Remember Elijah as he lived

Hard thing to do now. As BROWN is to be buried as he lived, a cadet, I had to see him today as they prepared his body. I wish I had not, but I am happy I did.

It was an experience. Not one I wish to repeat but it made me think, seriously think. I  reflected and do I wonder. Hard to accept that Elijah is gone but, there was no life in him today, no smile, no soul. That was not the Elijah I knew and loved. He is gone, what I saw was an empty shell dressed, made up and prepared to look like my cadet, my student, my friend.

So this is what I came up with. Remember him as he lived not not as he is died.

Elijah is an exceptional young man, a true testament to the character of those who raised him,

Even in death he left an extraordinary legacy, forming friendships, and inspiring cooperation, smiles and laughter.

Be comforted in know that as short as his life seems, he left an unforgettable legacy.

Must be a BROWN!

Elijah Brown has died

Today a brilliant light flickered away. Elijah was always happy. He annoyed me by being always high in spirit. He was persistent and insisted that we love and listen to him. He knew why.
Elijah made us smile even when we were upset, annoyed or just not in the mood.

He was my favourite cadet. He was the standard of the unit and the standard bearer of the unit.

He was a brilliant student of Information Technology even though he never thought so.

He was a perfect St Jago Student.

I will miss Elijah.

Conviction in faith

May you be always convicted of your faith
Never question it
Never justify it
Remember always it is not the world’s gift to you but rather it is your gift to the world.



Ryan’s confirmation was today. So what to say? What does it mean? Why is that significant?

This morning I got up and went to fellowship, not for fellowship but in support of a great decision. Confirmation is the acceptance of not only apostolic teachings but also the fellowship. So in gathering together to support Ryan, his ministry is begun. Six persons who otherwise would not be in the same place at the same time, did gather for a singular purpose.

So today, reflect on the miracle of people getting along with each other.  Be inspired, have faith, transform the human mind. We are all capable of much more than we believe we are.

To attempt to understand a miracle, to understand faith, to attempt any of these is futile. The point is to believe that there is something that connects us.

Create reality out of possibility.



Say not in grief that we are no more

Say not in grief that she is no more
but say in thankfulness that she was
A death is not the extinguishing of a light,
but the putting out of the lamp
because the dawn has come.



Behind Me — dips Eternity –
Before Me — Immortality –
Myself — the Term between –

E Dickenson


I was dead

Merrick Nelson

To say Uncle Merrick will be missed would be disingenuous, truth is we are mostly waiting to see him speeding up the avenue in his white pickup or to hear his morning call.


Really though, not many people as loud as Uncle Merrick can be truly described as quiet.

A truly quiet person leaves behind a quiet void, a calm memory and humbled friends

“Maas wallie, pardie, CC, bloss, Mr Escofrie” any one or combination of these could be heard each morning as Uncle Merrick was sure to ensure that all the neighbours in his immediate circuit made it through the night.


Then as he drove down the road he would offer a drive to anyone who could hold in his faithful pickup truck. He greeted everyone by name as he passed. Uncle Merrick not only lived in Strathmore but made sure he was a part of the community.


He taught us all how to be good neighbours, he was genuine, kind, and simply an awesome person who was always willing to go the extra mile for everyone.


Uncle Merrick was proud of his children, he loved them dearly and grew them wonderfully; then he made himself personally responsible for all the children in the community. When we were young he taught us to be good children, when we grew up he taught us to be good adults.

All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players; They have their exits and their entrances, And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages.

And so he plays his part, and today we play ours:

We are sad, we mourn when we lose someone we love but we celebrate because he has joined the church triumphant and has achieved the greatest reward. He has been called by God to be greater than he was on earth.



This is my tribute for Merrick Nelson. A great neighbour, a great friend and a greater father.

Mokṣa in this life

 the liberated individual shows attributes such as:

  • he is not bothered by disrespect and endures cruel words, treats others with respect regardless of how others treat him;
  • when confronted by an angry person he does not return anger, instead replies with soft and kind words;
  • even if tortured, he speaks and trusts the truth;
  • he does not crave for blessings or expect praise from others;
  • he never injures or harms any life or being (ahimsa), he is intent in the welfare of all beings;
  • he is as comfortable being alone as in the presence of others;
  • he is as comfortable with a bowl, at the foot of a tree in tattered robe without help, as when he is in a mithuna (union of mendicants), grama (village) and nagara (city);
  • he doesn’t care about or wear sikha (tuft of hair on the back of head for religious reasons), nor the holy thread across his body. To him, knowledge is sikha, knowledge is the holy thread, knowledge alone is supreme. Outer appearances and rituals do not matter to him, only knowledge matters;
  • for him there is no invocation nor dismissal of deities, no mantra nor non-mantra, no prostrations nor worship of gods, goddess or ancestors, nothing other than knowledge of Self;
  • he is humble, high-spirited, of clear and steady mind, straightforward, compassionate, patient, indifferent, courageous, speaks firmly and with sweet words.

Among the Samkhya, Yoga and Vedanta schools of Hinduism, liberation and freedom reached within one’s life is referred to asjivanmukti, and the individual who has experienced this state is called jivanmukta (self-realized person). Dozens of Upanishads, including those from middle Upanishadic period, mention or describe the state of liberation, jivanmukti. Some contrast jivanmukti with videhamukti (moksha from samsara after death). Jivanmukti is a state that transforms the nature, attributes and behaviors of an individual, claim these ancient texts of Hindu philosophy.

The things persons do that we dislike

From the things persons do that we dislike we learn what we should not do but do we understand why?


What do you need to be happy? All too often, we list the things we want: a bigger house, a cooler car, a trip around the world, money for retirement, a new friend or lover.
While striving for more is one of the things that makes us great, it’s never wise to make your happiness dependent on it. All too often, it’s hard to bring the things we want into our lives.

But one thing you do have the power to do is let go of things you don’t want or need. Whether out of habit or because of peer pressure or family pressure, we often cling to poisonous thoughts, feelings, and individuals.
Our unrealistic expectations set us up for failure, and our addiction to toxic people and activities brings us down. And then we wonder why it’s so hard to be happy.
Letting go isn’t easy, but you can do it. And once you let go of even just one toxic thing in your life, you will instantly get a boost toward greater happiness! Here are 30 things to drop now and forever for a better life.
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The problem isn’t that life is unfair – it’s your broken idea of fairness

I do not this great piece of work to disappear. From Oliver Emberton (


Unless you’re winning, most of life will seem hideously unfair to you.

If life was fair

The truth is, life is just playing by different rules.

The real rules are there. They actually make sense. But they’re a bit more complicated, and a lot less comfortable, which is why most people never manage to learn them.

Let’s try.

Rule #1: Life is a competition

That business you work for? Someone’s trying to kill it. That job you like? Someone would love to replace you with a computer program. That girlfriend / boyfriend / high-paying job / Nobel Prize that you want? So does somebody else.


We’re all in competition, although we prefer not to realise it. Most achievements are only notable relative to others. You swam more miles, or can dance better, or got more Facebook Likes than the average. Well done.

It’s a painful thing to believe, of course, which is why we’re constantly assuring each other the opposite. “Just do your best”, we hear. “You’re only in competition with yourself”. The funny thing about platitudes like that is they’re designed to make you try harder anyway. If competition really didn’t matter, we’d tell struggling children to just give up.

Fortunately, we don’t live in a world where everyone has to kill each other to prosper. The blessing of modern civilisation is there’s abundant opportunities, and enough for us all to get by, even if we don’t compete directly.

But never fall for the collective delusion that there’s not a competition going on. People dress up to win partners. They interview to win jobs. If you deny that competition exists, you’re just losing. Everything in demand is on a competitive scale. And the best is only available to those who are willing to truly fight for it.

Rule #2. You’re judged by what you do, not what you think

Potato sculptor

Society judges people by what they can do for others. Can you save children from a burning house, or remove a tumour, or make a room of strangers laugh? You’ve got value right there.

That’s not how we judge ourselves though. We judge ourselves by ourthoughts.

“I’m a good person”. “I’m ambitious”. “I’m better than this.” These idle impulses may comfort us at night, but they’re not how the world sees us. They’re not even how we see other people.

Well-meaning intentions don’t matter. An internal sense of honour and love and duty count for squat. What exactly can you and have you done for the world?

Abilities are not prized by their virtue. Whatever admiration society awards us, comes from the selfish perspectives of others. A hard working janitor is less rewarded by society than a ruthless stockbroker. A cancer researcher is rewarded less than a supermodel. Why? Because those abilities are rarer and impact more people.

We like to like to think that society rewards those who do the best work. Like so:

Graph 1

But in reality, social reward is just a network effect. Reward comes down mostly to the number of people you impact:

Graph 2

Write an unpublished book, you’re nobody. Write Harry Potter and the world wants to know you. Save a life, you’re a small-town hero, but cure cancer and you’re a legend. Unfortunately, the same rule applies to all talents, even unsavoury ones: get naked for one person and you might just make them smile, get naked for fifty million people and you might just be Kim Kardashian.

You may hate this. It may make you sick. Reality doesn’t care. You’re judged by what you have the ability to do, and the volume of people you can impact. If you don’t accept this, then the judgement of the world will seem very unfair indeed.

Rule #3. Our idea of fairness is self interest

People like to invent moral authority. It’s why we have referees in sports games and judges in courtrooms: we have an innate sense of right and wrong, and we expect the world to comply. Our parents tell us this. Our teachers teach us this. Be a good boy, and have some candy.

But reality is indifferent. You studied hard, but you failed the exam. You worked hard, but you didn’t get promoted. You love her, but she won’t return your calls.


The problem isn’t that life is unfair; it’s your broken idea of fairness.

Take a proper look at that person you fancy but didn’t fancy you back. That’s a complete person. A person with years of experience being someone completely different to you. A real person who interacts with hundreds or thousands of other people every year.

Now what are the odds that among all that, you’re automatically their first pick for love-of-their-life? Because – what – you exist? Because you feel something for them? That might matter to you, but their decision is not about you.

Similarly we love to hate our bosses and parents and politicians. Their judgements are unfair. And stupid. Because they don’t agree with me! And they should! Because I am unquestionably the greatest authority on everything ever in the whole world!

It’s true there are some truly awful authority figures. But they’re not all evil, self-serving monsters trying to line their own pockets and savour your misery. Most are just trying to do their best, under different circumstances to your own.

Maybe they know things you don’t – like, say, your company will go bust if they don’t do something unpopular. Maybe they have different priorities to you – like, say, long term growth over short term happiness.

But however they make you feel, the actions of others are not some cosmic judgement on your being. They’re just a byproduct of being alive.

Why life isn’t fair

Our idea of fairness isn’t actually obtainable. It’s really just a cloak for wishful thinking.

I wish

Can you imagine how insane life would be if it actually was ‘fair’ to everyone? No-one could fancy anyone who wasn’t the love of their life, for fear of breaking a heart. Companies would only fail if everyone who worked for them was evil. Relationships would only end when both partners died simultaneously. Raindrops would only fall on bad people.

Most of us get so hung up on how we think the world should work that we can’t see how it does. But facing that reality might just be the key to unlocking your understanding of the world, and with it, all of your potential.


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Sacred Host

Greet we thee sacred host, body broken that life be restored.

Greet we thee adorned host, expended of grace for a mortal cause.

Greet we thee heaven egress, grant triune lord our immortal soul.


Militant Expectant Triumphant

May we militant join the expectant and become triumphant.

DELL-TRITEM - WIN_20151101_171025

Today is The Solemnity of All Saints (was also Harvest Sunday).

Morning Mass celebrated The Solemnity of All Saints. (the Manning Cup team came to Mass)

Evensong The Solemnity of All Souls.

Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine, et lux perpetua luceat eis.