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Welcome to my personal website!

It's been a long time coming...

Is it a vanity project? I hope not. Rather it's a somewhat ramshackle, digital omnium gatherum, a place where I can share some biographical facts, a little personal history, as well as acquaint you of some of my ongoing passions and interests which are long-held and wide-ranging.

First, I write as an ordained minister, as an Anglican priest with a deep appreciation of and interest in Orthodox Christianity, in short as a sort of retired 'Papa', but also as somebody who has learnt a great deal from the wisdom of all the world's great religions - Judaism obviously, but also Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Zoroastrianism, Sufism, Daoism as well as what might be unfairly described as 'indigenous' religions. Not only that, I genuinely appreciate the honesty and sincerity of genuine agnostics and principled atheists. But please, no references to 'tooth fairies'!

Secondly, I also write as an 'also ran' philosopher with particular interest in ethics, aesthetics and epistemology as well as the relationship between science, especially neuroscience, and philosophy as informed by information technology and contemporary psychedelic research.

Thirdly, I write in some sense as a reluctant 'chronicler of the end of time' as our planet 'Earth' faces two enormous and maybe impossible challenges: namely, climate change and the emergence of artificial intelligence. Certainly it is not clear to me that humankind's future is in any sense assured at this stage in this planet's history. Technological inventiveness may be of little use if the world is running out of resources or we do not have the polical structures and moral wisdom to ensure that the resources are distributed justly. Sadly, the signs are not looking good. Yet we must live in hope and not retreat into cynicism or indifference. Think about the children. Yes, think about the children (
your children)!

According to Polonius in Shakespeare's
Hamlet , "To thine own self be true" reflecting Socrates' belief that there is a duty to 'know oneself' and that 'the unexamined life is not worth living'. However, this benchmark of authenticity is far from straightforward and probably needs to be complemented by the Johannine belief that "the truth will set you free" - free that is from narrow or distorted understandings of what selfhood means.

Today, many people are imprisoned by opaque, 'subterranian' ideologies underwritten (
sotto voce ) by large, transnational corporations and shadowy individuals of immense wealth, effectively unanswerable to anybody, who are more than delighted to be effaced in the media by the 'Punch and Judy' shows of national parliaments.

But an extraordinary revolution is on its way (yes, it really is, don't fret)...not so much the revolution of Lenin, but more the revolution of Lennon. When people start to understand the insufferable and despicable level of manipulation and deceit in national administrations, they will start to wonder whether in the coming age of the de-centralised internet and much else, 'politicians' and 'national governments' (as defined by the Westminster model) can make any sense. Reluctantly they will conclude that they are irrecoverably
passé and de trop ! I realise this disturbing prediction will offend some people and scare others, but it needs to be heard and loudly; certainly I don't wish to shy away from blowing the clarion along with others.

This website is dedicated to my late wife Audrey and her very extraordinary and gifted family. I stretched her to the very limit in every sense, but she did likewise, though differently. She was my true
μούσα, my true lover (yes there was a time when people didn't need recourse to pornographic sites to stimulate their imagination!), my true friend and, most important of all, my ultimate 'moral compass'. In sort, there are not enough words in the English language to express my gratitude!

I realise that this probably all sounds a bit earnest and grave. My sincere apologies. Yes, I've come to Symi to do some thinking and praying in my 'eyrie' aka 'monk's cell', but I'm happy (as many of you know already) to share a little retsina and ouzo and dance. We can give thanks at the altar, but we can do so as well on the dance-floor.

Symi is an absolutely extraordinary place. There's not a single day when I don't forget the incalculable privilege of living here. The warmth and generosity of its people (which must never be forgotten or abused) are at the very heart of the experience. The expat communities may struggle with the Greek language or the vagaries of the wind and rain in winter, but they are a hundred-per-cent committed to the future well-being of this amazing island, not just emotionally, but also intellectually. Their investment is huge. It really means a great deal to them. And I am one of them!

But, so too, is the extraordinary beauty of the island lying as it does at the very edge of Europe. We are so privileged!

Finally, and on a more prosaic note, this site will feature a
Book of the Month and a Track of the Month . I fear democracy will not feature here in any shape or form whatsoever as it will always be MY choice. Sorry folk. A real and necessary indulgence. In addition, the site will also feature a curated Food for Thought page of contemporary news articles as well as a Notice Board to publicise forthcoming events in Symi if they have a cultural or community signficance. Just email me with the relevant details of the event in Greek or English (or indeed any other language) and I'll upload the information within 36 hours at the latest.

That's it. Please enjoy!


PS First, this website is still in its infancy and will expand greatly as I gain access to more relevant materal. As a matter of principle, the site will never feature ads, employ cookies or track its viewers in any way. Secondly, I would be enormously grateful if you could alert me to 'dead links' or any other problems with the site, so I can put matters right. Thirdly, just for the geeks (Greek geeks as well!), this site was put together using Ambiera's RocketCake 2.0 and CoffeeCup (HTML editing) having 'retired' an ancient version of Dreamweaver! Sounds like a nice breakfast!

(8th March 2018)