Progress Report 6


The story might be located here

Well, chapter one is done and dusted until I reach the end and begin the inevitable rewrite. I started writing chapter two a couple of days back. Trying to tell you the reader a story without giving too much away isn’t easy. I’m applying the ‘Red Herring’ approach a lot this time. After all, we can’t have you thinking “I’ve cracked it!” within the first few chapters now can we.

What I will say is that at the moment, the story involves Dr Gilbert Briggs and a geologist travelling back in time to several key locations, in his quest to discover if the subject of endless debate down the centuries actually existed. So what is it I hear you cry? That’s for me to know and for you through Gilbert’s eyes, to find out. As for its location, that’s if you think you might know…

One other thing I can tell you is that the story quite possibly involves ‘ancient gods’, race memory and ancient cataclysms across the world. I’ve changed the working title once more. This time just one word –  Cataclysm. For now it suites my thinking.

This time round I’m only writing a couple of hundred words each day before going back through them to ensure you don’t become convinced you know what’s going to happen next. As for character conversations, first of all I just write what I want them to say before changing the words so that even when they are having a conversation, your still left guessing. Then I stop for a few hours to think things through, usually by playing my favourite video game Mass Effect 3. Doing something completely different to take my mind of things helps enormously.

More later.

PS Even writing this post, I’ve had to rewrite it several times for the reasons stated above. Devious or what?


There Is Nowt Queerer Than Folk


People in general are probably the most complicated, dangerous, confusing, annoying, tiresome, argumentative, frustrating, angry, illogical, emotional and idiotic creatures roaming this planet of ours. Don’t even get me going on the differences between the genders…

To begin with, the greater majority of mankind believes in some form of non existant all powerful entity. Why? What’s wrong with standing on your own two feet? To any logical thinking being, any form of religion makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Where is this all powerful being when we need them the most, like when we are involved in a war, or are suffering a family crisis? Nowhere, that’s where! So why bow down to them? It makes no sense at all.

Religion is hardly peaceful or benevolent, despite everything its devotees preach. Each religion believes it is the only true one, conning its faithful into thinking that all the others are unbelievers to be destroyed! I’ve lost count of the number of wars that were, and still are, being fought in its name – an ugly trait of those who still believe that they are still the masters of all mankind. It seems that we can’t get through a single century without declaring war on each other. Once again, why is that? In the days of yore the common people were given no choice in anything. Once upon a time we were ruled by Emperors, Kings, Dukes, Earls, Barrons and tribal Chieftains. What they decreed simply happened.

I’ve got news for you people. These days we do have a choice, despite what our political and religious leaders may say. Our politicians, backed by the more fantical religions, have taken over from any kind of royalty, prosecuting wars in other lands like there is no tomorrow, usually because those countries are oil rich. While we can’t do much about the religious fanatics, except ignore them, every few years we do get the chance to vote out the political party that is annoying and frustrating us the most. The real trouble is that instead of thinking first, many simply give their vote to a specific political party because that’s the way their family members and them have always done it. In my own case, I usually vote for the Labour party. Why do I do that? Habit, pure and simple!

More and more these days people simply don’t bother to vote, believing that their one vote won’t make any difference. Total rubbish!

With barely a fortnight to go, the good people of Scotland will get the chance to vote, either for independence from the rest of the UK, or to maintain the status quo. This is a historic moment in the history of these islands. The Scots won’t get another chance like this in the forseeable future. The political pundits and polls suggest that both sides of the argument, for and against, are about even. When have polls and pundits ever got anything right when it comes to elections, or in this case, probably the most important referendum that Scotland will vote on?

Since the Jacobites were beaten in the eighteenth century, ending any previous thoughts of Scots’ independance, the proud nation has been nothing more than a vassal state of England. Despite all of the scaremongering and threats from the UK parliament, personally I hope that Scotland achieves it dream to break away from the houses of parliament, otherwise known as Westminster, once and for all.

Role on the eighteenth of September…

Just give Al Qaeda an inch…

n_africa_mid_east_pol_95Why oh why do we in the West still feel the need to invade other countries on the flimsiest of contexts, convincing ourselves that we are somehow ‘civilizing’ and ‘saving’ the locals? Who are we kidding?

Just take a look at what is happening in Iraq at the moment. Since Saddam Hussein was defeated and executed, religious maniacs have surfaced. The latest group named ISIS, backed by Al Qaeda, now runs rampant scaring the pants off the country’s citizens. Thousands of ordinary Iraqis have fled from the northern city of Mosul, ahead of the fundamentalist army.

Now the ordinary inhabitants of Tikrit are also fleeing

When Colonel Gaddafi was removed from power in Libya, much the same thing occurred there.

While we have not been directly involved in Egypt, since the military dictatorship formerly led by Hosni Mubarak ended, Al Qaeda has got itself involved there as well, stirring up fundamentalists to take the country over. It is interesting to note that when the Muslim Brotherhood won the election legally, after Mubarak was deposed and placed under house arrest, that they soon showed their true colours. Once again the military has taken over. It remains to be seen if they can regain control of the situation.

That just leaves Afghanistan. What happens there when the last of the troops leave? One of two scenarios will become reality. Either the Taliban return in strength, or Al Qaeda stirs things up to the point where civil war breaks out, just as it has in Syria. That country used to be a steadying influence in the Middle-East. These days it is nothing more than a killing ground for the fundamentalists who crave a powerful Muslim state, encompassing the entire Middle-East and beyond…

An open letter to the Universe

After Turning Point

If you were peaceful representatives of a civilization beyond our Solar System in the depths of the universe, would you truly wish to make your presence known to humanity here on Earth? Just take a moment to look at how we behave towards each other and how we mistreat the beautiful planet we call home.

Ever since our earliest ancestors struggled free from the primordial ooze soon after the planet cooled, we have fought each other for survival, for food, for dominance, for shelter. All down the millennia through man’s time on this planet, greed, corruption and religion to name but three among a plethora of reasons, have been used as an excuse to wage war and to spread fear and dominance over others of our kind and the myriad of other species we class as lower life forms that also live here.

Take one of those three reasons I have listed above – religion. Come to think of it, it also encompasses the other two, greed and corruption.

Man has always been fearful of the unknown, even now in the twenty-first century. When our ancestors lived in caves, we were frightened by everything beyond our control. So we created gods (imaginary all powerful entities of our primitive imagination) to explain the totally natural phenomena of thunder, lightning, storms, floods  – in fact anything you care to name, guided by the irrational belief that somehow the gods were angry with us for some reason.

As the millennia rolled slowly by the concept of religion as a tool to subdue the masses moved from strength to strength. Those who craved power and control began to use it as a weapon in their arsenal.

When the Roman Empire fell into decline soon after a Palestinian freedom fighter who had been a thorn in the side of the Romans for preaching peaceful resistance to their occupation of his homeland was crucified by them, the leaders of the Empire changed direction. They continued to maintain the Empire’s hold over the known world by becoming the first leaders of a new religion based around the dead freedom fighter. Former Senators became Cardinals and the Emperor took on the mantle of leader of the new religion in the guise of Pope. Their church sprang up around the irrational belief that the man they had callously beaten, humiliated and crucified was in fact the son of an all seeing god.

Other religions have sprung up across the planet, working in tandem with the first organised religion in an unspoken agreement to maintain control over the entire population of our world.

We as a species have become so dependent on religion that the vast majority are unable to think for themselves anymore. We make choices, rightly or wrongly, as we go through our daily existence, all the while worrying about offending the tenets of our particular religion.

Over the centuries we have committed terrible atrocities against other peoples all in the name of religion, calling those who have been the target of our zealous war mongering heathen unbelievers.

We live in a world where to be a free thinking individual is to be an outsider. To get on in this planet’s society you have to conform to a specific set of rules. Religion demands you become a sheep-like member of the flock if you will. Our political leaders have largely taken over from the former Emperors, Kings, Queens, Chiefs, and Clan leaders, still using religion to further their own selfish need to be in control.

We have added yet another religion these days. We call it progress. This is used as an excuse to deplete our planet’s natural resources and rape the land to make way for the burgeoning numbers of humanity who are needed by our leaders to fulfill their wishes and desires to grow rich at our expense.

Imagine what we as a species would do if a far more advanced sentient and peaceful species decided to visit us here on our beautiful water dominated planet. Would we welcome them with open arms or would we bow down to them as gods? The more likely scenario is that our leaders, political, military and religious, would treat them as a threat and attempt to destroy them.

Personally if I were able to send those peaceful representatives a message, it would be this:

Stay away for your own safety! Warn all other sentient species that this planet we call Earth, while beautiful to see from the depths of space, is lethal to all life. Its inhabitants are irrational warmongering beings to be avoided at all costs. Do not under any circumstances allow us to explore beyond our system of planets.

Far better that we as a species are contained and unable to expand into the universe. Just wait until this planet and all the others revolving around our star are engulfed in its fiery demise, before you consider visiting this arm of the galaxy we call the Milky Way.

Religious Extremism Gone Mad


Buddhas of Bamiyan

Why is it that in this modern era, so many extreme Islamists believe that ancient monuments representing many other religions, are somehow offensive in the eyes of their version of God? Take what Taliban extremists did to the Buddhas of Bamiyan in Afghanistan as one glaring example of this completely nonsensical and baffling mindset.

See the following article for further reading:

Whether you are deeply religious or not, acting in such a way can never be condoned. Over the last few years an ever growing number of mindless acts of vandalism has occurred, carried out by various Islamic extremist groups (who it could be argued have a medieval Crusader mentality when it comes to other religions) across the Middle East and in countries bordering the region.

Now we hear that Al Qaeda backed religious extremist groups have desecrated former religious buildings in Mali, citing the fact that they are an insult to the Koran as the reason for their senseless acts of destruction.

In Egypt the authorities are extremely concerned since veiled threats by small groups of religious extremists within the country threaten Egypt’s world famous ancient monuments like the pyramids.

Can you imagine anyone in the west getting away with destroying a church, mosque or synagog these days? I can’t. How about a national monument like Westminster Cathedral or an ancient site like Stonehenge, or the long lines of Menhirs at Carnac in northern France, will they be targeted at some time in the future by these clearly deranged individuals?

If anyone tried to commit such an act of mindless destruction anywhere in the western world, they would simply be arrested and sent for trial before being incarcerated in prison for a considerable part of their lives.

What will it take to prevent these people from carrying out their mindless threats? Should we care? Yes of course we should. Statues like the Bamiyan Buddhas and other religious artifacts are part of a country’s rich heritage. Markers in stone if you will. They are certainly solid reminders of earlier periods in a nation’s history. Instead of wanting to destroy their past, they should be proud of it…