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Archive for the ‘freedom’ Category

A couple of A.C . Grayling’s books – recently finished

In books, ethics, freedom, good life, history, moral issues, philosophy, politics, traditions on December 14, 2013 at 14:26

The Good Book: A Humanist Bible.
I normally really enjoy books by A.C. Grayling.  I’ve got few complaints about this one.  I don’t know if it’s only fault of the audio book but I found it frustrating that I didn’t know from where the quotes were taken.

I did really enjoyed the verses chapter. It was great to recognise a piece of poetry I’ve learned at school in another language!  On the whole I think the book should not had “Bible” in the title and somehow influencing its structure. Bible is not a greatest of our ancient texts and has been completely discredited over the centuries. 

I also think that this A.C . Grayling book would benefit from inclusion of modern philosophy.

Liberty in the Age of Terror: A Defence of Civil Liberties and Enlightenment Values.
It is right to be concerned with attacks on Civil Liberties.  However I think the author didn’t really shown how much better informed we are thanks to the technology and globalisation,  how much more opportunities we have to express our opinions to the whole world and to listen to opinions of others. The feeling of interdependence and interconnection (one small world!) does helps to promote the Enlightenment values by itself.

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Freedom fighting

In ethics, freedom, philosophy, relationship on December 9, 2013 at 12:41

Did you notice that the people who are the loudest at claiming themselves freedom fighters are the first to get angry at you if you disagree? They can’t stand your freedom to have your own opinion.

Union or divorce

In freedom, history, people, politics, relationship on December 2, 2013 at 20:48

Whatever the outcome, it is a sad picture when a country splits apart. On the emotional level, I am happy for Germany, reunited. I am happy that more countries join EU, even if there are some troubles and worries. I am happy for Switzerland which keeps its national unity even if its people speak different languages. It feels like a wedding or a long happy marriage. I am not so happy for Yugoslavia or Russia/Belarus/Ukraine, where most people spoke very similar languages, had similar history but they failed to stay together. Divorce is always a failure – even a civilized one (as long as we treat life long marriage as a positive thing).

When a country splits there are family, friend and business connections torn apart. Customs and visas may creep in, different laws, currencies, different holidays. There often a nasty stench of aggressive nationalism involved.

I think more personal and regional independence but more national (but not ethnically nationalist) unity is the step forward – not multiplying governments, boundaries, checkpoints, and bureaucracy.

Skirts and scarves issue / О платочках и юбках

In взаимоотношения, история, мораль, отношения, православие, ethics, freedom, history, moral issues, религия, свобода, традиции, христианство, people, relationship, religion, traditions on November 4, 2013 at 15:27

I should confess that I find the notion that women should cover their hair, legs or even faces extremely evil and perverse. It is nothing else but a remnant of the dark primitive times of total male domination.

Why did this domination happened to the human race in the first place? I guess just because on average males were physically stronger than average females.  It is interesting to try to imagine what would happened if the strength was equal or roles were reversed.

All the excuses like “women should cover up so they do not tempt men” are based on obvious inequality: men’s hair, proportional bodies and handsome faces could be just as attractive to women – yet men are not normally forced to cover themselves up!

Hopefully human race is growing out of the disgraceful dominance of the physically strong. I often feel the need to help this somehow. I even wanted to start a women’s movement against all this cover up business and to have members pledging never wear particular styles of scarves or skirts – as they are signs of oppression.

I really can never be a close friend to a person who willingly participate in this scarves, burkas, dresses and skirts masquerade. I don’t object people wearing whatever they want for the fun of it but I can’t accept a “moral” attitude to dress code and sickly fear of “divine” punishment for not keeping it. Neither can I feel any respect to the cultures which still enforce this ancient injustice not will I go as a tourist to countries where this is common. I boycott them and hope other self respecting individuals would do too.

We do have a dress code here in the so called West too but it is based on rational MUTUAL agreement do not display publicly any reproductive organs to avoid unnecessary distraction. As long as this is rational, doesn’t interfere with art and could be easily changed if people’s perception of each other changes in future, it’s Ok.

I don’t consider myself a feminist: this is a human rights issue.  By the contrast I am really surprised at ladies infuriated because somebody called them “flower”. Obviously the men who do this just want to please and if enough women will let them know they don’t enjoy being called “flower” nobody would do this in future.  It is also troubles me that western governments are trying to get same amount of men and women per every occupation. Having the same human rights doesn’t mean being the same. A number of women spend time doing something that men physically couldn’t: being pregnant and breastfeeding.  And good for them. Plus there are other physical and mental differences resulting in different lifestyle preferences. But nothing at all to hide on the head…

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Должна признаться, что нахожу точку зрения будто женщины обязаны покрывать головы, ноги или даже лица исключительно порочной. Такое мнение – пережиток темных времен патриархата.

Как человечество оказалось в такой ситуации? Я думаю, просто потому, что в среднем самцы были сильнее самок. Интересно представить, что бы было, если бы роли поменялись или были бы равными.

Оправдания типа “женщины должны покрываться тряпками, чтобы не смущать мужчин” базируются на вопиющем неравноправии. Симпатичные лица, фигуры и волосы мужчин могут быть так же привлекательны для женщин, однако никто обычно не требует от мужчин прятаться!

Надеюсь, что человечество в скором времени вырастет из пережитков эпохи власти физической силы. Временами мне даже хочется этому как-то помочь, например, организовать движение женщин, отказывающихся надевать определенные типы платков и юпок – тех, которые навязываются разнообразными религиями.

Я вряд ли когда-нибудь смогу быть близким другом дам, которые сознательно участвует во всех этих маскарадах. Мне совершенно все равно, что люди носят, если они это делают для собственного удовольствия, но смирится с морализмом или глупым страхом божественного наказания в этом плане я не могу. Не могу я и испытывать уважение к культурам, которыедо сих пор активно навязывают такие атавистические взгляды и ни за что не поеду отдыхать в страны, где все это происходит. Надеюсь, и другие уважающие себя женщины поступают также.

Конечно, в современных Европе и Северной Америке существуют определенные правила, касающиеся одежды, но они, в общем, уже не базируются на суевериях, устаревших книгах, страхах и вопиющем неравенстве, поэтому меня они не беспокоят. Меняется мода – меняются и правила. Это нормально.

Я не считаю себя феминисткой. Принудительные юбки и платочки – это нарушение прав человека. Права у нас одинаковые, но это не значит, что мы – одно и то же. Глупо, нгапример, пытаться набрать то же число мужчин и женщин на каждый пост. Различная биология диктует различные устремления. Вот только на голове нет ничего такого, что необходимо прятать!

It’s OK as long as its not harmfull

In ethics, freedom, philosophy, relationship, religion on June 23, 2013 at 08:12

John Gray said in a recent interview: “I don’t care what people believe, unless it is in some way demonstrably toxic or harmful.”  This is somebody posing as original critical thinker – yet the phrase describes probably most of us with various opinions about many subjects. Each human think of different ideas as harmful, that’s it. Any religious fanatic would think that not following his understanding of his religion is harmful to people and he, being, of course, concerned about everybody’s wellbeing, would go any distance to convert all of us, to protect us from harm. Lots of horrible things are done not because of hatred but because of compassion, because of will to help to some “lost sheep”.  Non-fanatics may think the same, but they won’t actively go and try to “rescue” everybody they meet. Unless you live a life of apathy and indifference, you would find ideas, beliefs, sets of mind that you think are harmful. It could be just a waste of time in you opinion, or you could think “this may lead to violence, and that’s bad”.  Do psychologists, sociologist, historians, brain scientists write on when, how and which ideas become destructive for individuals or societies? Do they publish the results openly, without fear of offending supporters of these ideas? This may bring some clarity. Or maybe not, as the experts would probably disagree on what is destructive. For example, how much anger, procrastination or indifference is OK for each of us, could violent outbreaks in history lead to better future, etc…

What John Gray is afraid? “… the idea that human beings are, by their very nature, free is the one of the most harmful fictions that has ever been promoted anywhere.” So there is example of somebody who is actually after your freedom. Harmful illusion it is…

Tradition vs Freedom?

In crafts, folk art, freedom, good life, healthy life, people, traditions, travel on June 2, 2013 at 20:06

Local customs, costumes, crafts, foods… It’s all seems to melt gradually into some new globalised uniformity. In a way, this is a sad picture, a loss of our beautiful diversity. Western people often feel touched looking at tribal portraits, especially of children, in exotic attires.  But what these people from distant lands would prefer themselves, given choise? Modern living with its salaries, doctors, schools, pensions, benefits, equality and human rights or posing for tourists for a few coins? Is wearing those heavy earring painful? Did that beautiful bride choose her future husband herself? How old is she? How well is she educated? Do we have to stay in a fantasy land? Why so many people are migrating to cities and leaving traditional way of life behind?

 

The solution to the loss of traditional cultures seems to lay in our free will to explore them and carry their achievements into the future. Lets enjoy the color and sound, lets experiment without being afraid of onlookers. Lets celebrate free creative life. Nobody should ever try to force anybody into the past. Rather we should help to grow a free and equal for all future – firmly rooted in the best from our past.

Free speech

In freedom, philosophy, politics, religion on May 27, 2013 at 18:01

“Democracy requires debate and challenge,  the rule of law requires the right to be heard in court, genuine education requires questioning and access to information. Without free speech none of these things are possible.  Something the price of the free speech is offence, but “feeling offended” can never justify censorship.” A.C. Grayling

Recent sketches

In art, drawing, весна, взаимоотношения, мои рисунки, мораль, отношения, ethics, floral, flower, flowers, freedom, good life, moral issues, my artworks, свобода, творчество, painting, pastel, pen, pen and ink, politics, relationship, spring, t-shirt on May 26, 2013 at 09:54

A bee one I’ve started while in the Galleries Live in Telford

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And some sketches for greeting cards and t-shirts

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Back at the market table

In about me, art, car-free living, children, crafts, folk art, freedom, garden, gardening, good life, jewellery, jewelry, kids, mixed media, my artworks, painting, photography, relationship, sales, shopping, sketch, textile art, Uncategorized on April 16, 2013 at 09:46

So I did it again: for the third financial year I am loosing money (something like 67-350-250 £ a year). This is despite parting with a number of paintings,  cards and prints.

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I am grateful to the people who bought the artwork from me but please be aware that it was local council,  public transport companies,  insurance companies, post offices and art supplies who really got your money: I had to pay them too.

Number of customers at the Market is falling. I only managed to cover my rent for December. The local library sent me a letter saying I have to pay 45 pounds if I dare to put prices on my paintings at my annual exhibition. I had it here for 2 years and earned 20 – 40 pounds each time…

I should admit that the thought of a big bonfire made of the paintings and sketches regulary burns in my mind. But I am not sure I ever can give up. All the money I have to spend on art are the leftovers from buying food and clothes for my family for which my husband gives me some money. I could’ve spent more money on him and kids. Perhaps I should have spent more time on them too.

All the housekeeping: washing, cooking, gardening, tidying and almost all shopping are my responsibilities which I have been partly ignoring for last few years in order to “be an artist”. And I am not even good at it. My conscience is not allowing me to charge sky-high for my artworks and anyway local people wouldn’t be able to pay any more. We haven’t got many millionaires in Newtown. I love doing art but the stress of trying to sell it and to please everyone is getting at me.

So I probably will only have a table on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Newtown Market, I also will exhibit some artworks at Galleries Live in Telford and Shrewsbury. I also will possibly participate in an evening art club at Pen Dinas Community Garden if it won’t eat too much time. But I really would like to claim at least some of my life back as my home, me, the family and the garden are not well attended at the moment. I used to read, write, exercise, do plein air trips and I want to try to go back to this.

Sorry for a bit of whining but I feel I should explain what’s going on – mostly for people who (I think) expect me to be something I am not.

Random Things

In abstract, acrylic, art, crafts, drawing, мои рисунки, folk art, freedom, good life, mixed media, painting, pen, pen and ink, textile, textile art on March 14, 2013 at 11:57

A slate painting and a pin coushon

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