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There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:26-28)
Diversity within unity and change over time is the reality of Creation. Peter Such, poet and writer (1943–)
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Peter Such

Peter Such

A view of Great Berkhamsted from Cooper's fields. 

Peter Such lives in Great Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, England.
Formerly working in printing and publishing Peter Such is currently an occasional writer on diverse issues, as the mood takes him.
He has regularly put his views to the test of public opinion, which is how he twice ended up as mayor of his home town.
 He also stood for The Referendum Party in the UK General Election of 1997.

www.petersuch.org www.petersuch.com
Also on Twitter as Peewit2 (he doesn't take it seriously) and on Facebook as himself (Peter.Such.5)

FURTHER DEVELOPMENTS CURRENT BLOG ANNOTATIONS/OTHER REFERENCES

LAST PUBLISHED
FRIDAY 10th MARCH 2017 [mid morning]

SOME THOUGHTS ON LIFE
DEVELOPING A POST IN MY WEEKLY COMMENTARY ON FRIDAY10th MARCH 2017

GENERAL AND COMMENTARY INDEX
THE EU QUESTION
and MOVING ON

NEVER FORGET
It was Labour and the Lib/Dems that denied us the political vote that turned commercial agreements on trade into political authoritarian diktat. As Churchill said "Trust the British people". Labour refused to do so and the Tories took too long to get round to doing so. Neither presented a competent argument.
We would have had a perfectly harmonious relationship with the EU had France not panicked over the greater empire and commonwealth that we created, for which reason they denied us earlier entry and ensured the rationality and logic we would have brought was excluded from the EU's basic structure, leading them away from proper objectives.
  

TAKEN FROM MY WEEKLY COMMENTARY OF FRIDAY 10th MARCH 2017 [early morning]
A ROLLER COASTER OF A WEEK AND A HALF!
THIS past week and a half has been very much a roller coaster of life’s realities: to lose one spouse is tragedy enough but to lose a second is not only a repeat tragedy but a reliving of the first, especially when the second was a replacement of the first deliberately closing that history as if it had never happened.
           Who we are is the history we accumulate as we progress through life and gaining a stepmother should be a building and development of established history, not a denial of it: “there is no death”.
            Eliot comes to mind: “Time present and time past are both perhaps present in time future and time future contained in time past.” This came to the fore in a BBC programme last night on the science of the brain, dealing with many weirdly wonderful physical and biochemical accidents and how these events had impinged on one or two individuals, not only making them unique but also answering some previously known but unexplained anomalies. A reminder that science continues to find explanations for what had previously been beyond explanation.
            One individual had the ability to remember every detail through her life, highlighting that loss of memory in the average person was more a function of failing to remember, rather than memory loss being a natural state over time. For such a person, the ability to be in more than one frame of time at any time was a natural part of her being, in the same way that while the average person can see a million colours, one or two people have four light cones instead of the “normal” three, enabling them to see four million variations of colour against a single million for everyone else.
            I remember a lengthy discussion with a close friend, who possessed a mediumistic talent, on the philosophies concerning past lives, the nature of spirit, the nature of time and the “intrusion” of sex.
            Sex is a separation from the whole, which is spirit, the relationship being like the driver to the car. Who, or at what point is the driver defined? Likewise the car, how does the driver determine or has determined for him/her/LGBT a Rolls Royce, a motorbike, or a “lemon”, as the Americans call rogue products? Or is the sexual orientation purely the product of the physical, the driver spirit in its wholeness defined sexually, mentally and physically by the physicality of the vehicle?
            So, that was Tuesday before last. It was already a crowded week. Emotions across the family plain were all awry, as were time frames. The first of these two deaths was my mother’s younger sister some forty years ago, when medics had too little knowledge of cancer and not the slightest idea of how to handle death, especially the death of a parent to four pre-teenage children. It was the period when the only mention of cancer was “the big ‘C’” in conspiratorial whispers, as if some treason or heresy was being committed; the “stiff upper lip” and “fear to tread”, relying on privacy was the order of the day and no one seemed remotely open as to what the hell was actually going on with anyone. Therein lies the perception that different people were being told different things about the same event. The reason was relationships: partly familial; allowing for age range (children and the varying range of adult sensitivities); varying turmoil over time in the face of uncertainty, balancing the necessity of "carrying on" with the commitments of a demanding working life.
            One has to bear in mind what that time period had inured into them by social convention. Everyone was “out of their depth”, relying on “the professionals”, who lacked the honesty to admit they too were out of their depths. The hospice movement had not yet started in any meaningful manner.
            That emotion was now relived, through the changed perspectives of their older selves and society's changed attitudes towards the handling of death, over time. Individual life experiences now gave the very young players of the first experience a different perspective, time having made them now more themselves than the products of the adults around them earlier but still damaged by the way they had been previously treated. Hopefully, this enabled a more rational relationship with the new generation that knew the "step" generation emotionally only as "assumed blood relatedl".
             The church where the funeral was to be held was one in which my and their cousin, a now retired Reverend Doctor, would have been happy to preach, representing a familiar empathy with that aspect of the family which embraced a free church orientation. How odd then, the abrupt coldness with which the new regime announced its arrival, so many years previously.  
              The classic “statement” of this reality was the unexpected arrival of my uncle, after a 100-mile plus motorbike journey to see his nephews and nieces, his deceased youngest sister’s children. “Hello and good bye” only, the new regime demanded church must come first, what would people think, to miss church service for personal family relationships! The rote of ritual was the only reality, emotional love and instinctive response of familiarity was not to be allowed to get in the way of the schedule!
            Countering, there is the perspective of the step's family: their loss in coping with her need for a previous divorce, hence her own two sons emotional needs but which trauma made her "available" and the two families were aware of one another, living close by. Therein lay a problem. The father, a highly successful senior manager (later director) of a major company was in as emotional a state then as he was again now but now at least retired, although much older.
             A situation had arisen then, in which hard-headed objective management was needed, emotionally beyond him then. Such objectivity then seemed to have failed totally to take into account the highly sensitive emotions of four diverse pre-teen children, individually dazed with bewilderment and unaware of the saerious practicality of possible separation.
            Back to the realities of 2017, a period in which the hospice movement has made great strides in changing social perceptions and even many churches have adapted reasonably well but we still have appalling hangups over "assisted dying" and fully handling the fact of death.
            Christianity is driven by the coldly logical as well as the humanity of pure love and understanding of one another and recognition of individual needs. Co-ordination, through pre-planning and openness of facts did not seemingly go so well in the former case. The structure was not there. There was the rigidity of “objective rationality” but not the emotional flexibility, adaptability and malleability of patient understanding, that was so essential and so much part of the deceased mother's four children's rightful inheritance and need, then. What ever measures were necessary to keep them together seemed (and rightly so) to over-ride all other considerations... but this turned out also to incur complete disconnect from their established history of familial certainty.
            I am of diverse spiritual interests, which is why I do not feel particularly at home under any specific label. So, leaving a ‘free’, modern community church I continued on my business needs and ended up dropping in on the centuries old parish church, admiring its stained glass windows, its ancient pews and persistent smell of furniture polish, providing the music to the dance of dust in the sunbeams but no aroma of incense; another of my dichotomies.
            My own church (one of three such) is high yet personally, except for very special occasions, I am low, hence my current precipitation to the simplicity of the “free” church tradition, especially the general jollity of its “Salvation Army” type tunes (I cannot sing) and its easy-going style, as I was to experience that coming Sunday; but I cannot travel the Evangelist road, a proclivity of which is another cousin’s preference, interestingly converting from Roman Catholicism to Evangelism.
            There is a movement, of which my theological cousin is a proponent, “Free to Believe”, an informal network of liberally minded Christians striving for an open, inclusive and thinking church. That reminds me, there is a book I am supposed to read before an early summer conference of a few days in the Lake District but this is digression.
            Many years back, my recently departed friend in the States joined the Unitarian church with which he felt empathy, primarily for his daughter [his first wife (again cancer but handled with modern realism) later became a minister] and to which he once delivered a talk on his personal spiritual experiences, about which he had previously kept very quiet.
            A Unitarian in Britain has posted that he finds great similarities with the Quaker philosophy, in which I have likewise had an interest but have never made any specific enquiry. That is probably the nub of my matter. I have too easily had much “handed to me on a plate” and taken matters too casually, almost flippantly.
           My personal experiences are not relevant here, other than as a background to the whys of a particularly demanding week. Through family and wider associations I have direct experience of a diversity of interpretations of the Christian message and generally conclude, “does it matter?” They are all “interpretations” based upon a fundamental belief that there is “something else”, so why not deal with “the something else” simply and straightforwardly: there is no death!
            For my father, my notice of funeral simply said “be not morbid in your attire, this is the celebration of a life.” I have only spoken to him once since, with both my mother and sister and the sitting was so excellent even the medium was overcome.
            Will I speak to my late friend? I will allow him to impinge upon my mind should he wish to do so but unlikely, as I have no need but physically to catch up on background information he was supposed to be sharing with me but never got round to doing. In any case such an amount of data is not practicable through a paid medium.
            Use your time well, every minute of every day and both of us were people accustomed to doing many things simultaneously, which is why I flannel around as the “author of half-a-dozen books, taken to various stages of incompletion, because the day job got in the way.”
            So, Tuesday was learning the arrangements being made. For reasons implied here I decided not to attend but spent the Wednesday and Thursday thinking through the various persons involved, their relationships. Empathising with their emotional concerns and how they will have adapted and changed over time.
            Hence Eliot: “Time present and time past are both perhaps present in time future and time future contained in time past.” The BBC programme last night highlighting the scientific probability of reliving past events almost literally, as my friend and I had discussed, relating to spirituality generally. During one of those sessions, when I was in America with him, my aunt came through—my uncle’s first wife and the prime cause of my present trauma and contemplation.
            It was this unexpected and unsought event that turned my appraisal of possibilities in this field into accepting them as simple facts. My aunt was concerned about her eldest daughter and “would I visit and talk to her when I got back home?” It was not her directly but someone her side of the veil on her behalf. I knew not why but felt I would sense why when talking to her daughter. As turned out to be the case, her daughter at that time having no idea but that I had “simply dropped by in passing”.
             In my most recent experience, talking with both parents and my sister, which I had specifically initiated on impulse, because I happened to be outside the Spiritualist Association of Great Britain’s HQ and I had gambolled on a medium being available, the communication was so relevant and specific, there was simply no doubt in my mind that my friend and I had been rationally dealing with experiences which any of the scientifically examined BBC witnesses broadcast last night would have experienced in their circumstances.
            HSAM [Hierarchical Sequential Access Method in computing] biologically known as Hyperthymesia, is the condition of possessing an extremely detailed autobiographical memory.
            People with hyperthymesia remember an abnormally vast number of their life experiences. American neurobiologists Elizabeth Parker, Larry Cahill, and James McGaugh (2006) identified two defining characteristics of hyperthymesia: spending an excessive amount of time thinking about one's past, and displaying an extraordinary ability to recall specific events from one's past. Nowhere as distinctive as later, currently described, I submit that Eliot was thinking along such lines when he wrote that first poem ‘Burnt Norton’ in his Four Quartets.
            Friday was another contrast, an Old Boys’ dinner, bringing back different memories and a connection, my recently widowed uncle and his brother were also Old Boys but not as regular in following through as I have been. Being born in the town, lived in it all my life and having been, now some while back, its mayor, the school has been an integral part of my whole.
           Until then I had been on tenterhooks, was I okay for the weekend? My health was showing an up and holding, so weekend away with my mother’s family and the uncle with whom I have periodically talked about his own personal spiritualist experiences but whose experience with a London medium, one of the most well known at that time had been deeply disappointing.
            As the SAGB’s web site says, there is no guarantee of any outcome. These things are not for us to dictate, simply to be available, if required. So, a week of deep thought but my inherent mischievousness ponders, with amusement, whether there could be any empathy between the two women now they are both in spirit. If not, could it be because the first has already moved on, or been redirected and is back on this earth? Past lives… I have been informed of two previous ones of my own, through my friend’s mediumship, in both of which I was apprently male.
            Half a day later I added a further note, thoughts I had inadvertently left out of my first post. It was this that prompted me to make this subject a page of its own, to which further thinking can be added.
           Such potential, creating specific subject pages had been part of my original thinking in creating my Weekl;y Commentary but editorial management simply took up too much time. When I casually mentioned, in an Fb post, that I would be extending my point further in a web page, I had no idea my week of turmoil would extend into a week and a half, nor that my report would be as lengthy as it was, hence a page creation more or less as my pages on the Referendem evolved.
           First, on the Wednesday before the funeral, Berkhamsted Citizens' Association held a meeting at which the former director of Berkhamsted Hospice, subsequently awarded an OBE and now advising nationally, gave a talk on the hospice movement.
           Interestingly, this was entirely upon the physicality and finality of death. No one raised the issue of spiritual existence but does handling the simple "mechanical/objective" process as a form of ritual really deal with the situation? The problem is the diversity of acquired opinion across the persons most affected in any particular death experience, especially the subject of assisted dying.
          The speaker said that she had often said to a terminal patient, "Imagine I have in my hand a tablet that will end everything, would you want to take take it?" 98 out of 100 decline but the issue is the right to choice, even if only 2 in 100 would take the choice. It is not the right of the cowards hiding behind their screens of self-detachment and "objective philosophy" to deny someone they do not know, their right to choose. None of us know, until that critical moment, what our choice would be. What matters is that there is a choice and the freedom should be theirs to exercise it, simply as they will. Rather as I, knowing the reality of inter-spritual communication do not pursue it: the choice is there, that is what is important.
          

PREVIOUS MONTHS 
It was Labour's socialism that determined acceptance of the EU's diktats without argument because it took away their accountability for what they knew the country would not accept. All that is happening now is the rational debate Labour were not capable of holding.

PARLIAMENTARY WORK AHEAD
Boundary clarification. How many seats and what preferred size of constituency population?

Proportional representation. Which system?

House of Lords? Should it be elected or appointed and upon what classification? Originally based on the realities of the day: Spiritual; Legal; Defence; land ownership; hereditary entitlement.

Today? Spiritual but across the faiths (define), including pure secularism/humanitarianism (all appointed/elected by their respective churches); Legal, as is; Political (variable by proven worth, such as past ministers or retired professional senior civil servants and limited party nominations); representatives of Capital, Financial Services, Labour (all either retired or active, appointed or elected by their respective accredited bodies); Education (ditto precedents stated); Health (ditto); Other?

The whole re-viewable by a statutory committee reporting with recommendations to parliament on a ten yearly basis to cover relevance of classifications in the then current world. Modus operandi as at present.

 
 
WORKING NOTES