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issue 4

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Community Culture C u l t u r e Insight_ Insight

Community

Sometimes we are asked ,

what is this Inspired Community Magazine about? The founding notion was for Inspired to be a vehicle to bring people together and to share ideas and experiences that have inspired the writers and might inspire readers too. Based on the feedback we are getting so far, and the material that is being submitted, we have seen three main themes that are important to people, namely - community, culture and insight. What do these words mean? Well, by our definition, community is whatever brings people together. At Inspired we consider anything that brings people together to be a good and desirable thing! Culture is the mark people make in the world. Articles coming under the banner of culture cover any subject that looks out at the workings of the world. Finally Insight is an individual's unique and personal reflection on life. No We all have our own unique and insights on who we are and can valuable what our lives mean. At Inspired, we feel that to explore and express such istle a insights is an entirely worthwhile thing to do.

one

wh

symphony It takes

a

whole

orchestra to play it H.E. Luccock

So please enjoy reading this Inspired magazine as our contribution to community, culture and insight. Pass it on to someone else you think would be interested to read it. And if you want to, why not write something for the magazine yourself. Write about what brings people together; write about the world around you; or write about a personal insight you have to share. And always, be inspired! Inspired Community Magazine Team 1


I don’t get onto public transport looking for lessons about life, but I often find them: nothing forces us to compromise our sense of ourselves as individuals more than sharing a packed bus or train. I often think about this when jammed into a Métro train in Paris, where public transportation is undoubtedly the most effective way of getting around the city. For a start, when you don’t have a car you don’t have to go looking for a car-parking space (also, when you frequently see motorists bounce their vehicles off other parked cars while trying to squeeze into a too-small spot, you understand why people would swear off driving in the French capital).

“use drives

As a result, when I think about community I think of public transport – not streets, housing estates, shops or churches. The need for movement in the modern city means that, if we choose to take public transportation, we spend more time every week on the bus or train than we do at the other activities we’d more readily associate with community.

expansion”

Yet making the decision to take public transport is a profoundly communal act. You’re making a statement about what kind of city you want to live in. Too often getting the bus is seen as a poor second to driving, but the fact is that, if a critical mass of people decided to start using public transport more frequently, the revenues for bus and train companies would increase, and services would have to adjust to allow for this increased capacity. ‘You need [population] density to support public transit’, says planning expert Jeffrey Zupan in David Owen’s book Green Metropolis. One of the problems Dublin’s transportation infrastructure has to deal with is the city’s relatively low density: people live further apart and public transportation systems struggle to supply services that will cover everyone. These problems have been exacerbated by recent planning: the city has continued to expand in a form that primarily facilitates car use; road capacity increases to sate demand from drivers who want to get to work, or to the shops, in their private cars. And Dublin’s public transport system, which is mainly road-based, is slowed by the increased traffic. As a result, buses are seen as unreliable, or a transport choice of last resort. More seductive forms of public transport, such as the Luas, are 2

Community

Public Transport and Community


viewed as more efficient and attractive – some people’s attitude seems to be: unless there’s a Luas running near my house, I won’t switch to public transport. But the fact is: use drives expansion. Overuse of private cars, together with effective lobbying from organisations such as the Automobile Association ensured a vast programme of road expansion during Ireland’s boom years. Public transportation expansion lagged behind. As soon as the economy tanked, public transportation projects such as Metro North were the first to go, cynically tagged as ‘vanity projects’ rather than essential aspects of an effectively functioning modern city. Admittedly, in 2012, transport fares increased – but journeys still cost far less than equivalent trips in London or most of the UK. And, due to the vagaries of petrol prices now and in the future, the cost of car trips will be less predictable than the cost of a bus journey. So what I’m suggesting is simple: in opposition to the reduction in public transportation use that’s being encouraged by transport pricing policies, we continue to use it, and encourage others to use it too. Public transport is an essential, fundamentally social aspect of life in a big city. Karl

picture quiz Can you identify the following ten corporate brands or logos? Turn to page 18 to learn the answers, and to find out where you register on our highly un-scientific “Corporate Personality Index”! 1.

6.

2.

7.

3.

8.

3

4.

9.

5.

10.


Culture

2012

So the much talked-about and anticipated 2012 is finally upon us – the End of Days, the Apocalypse, the Rapture! 2012 is the year the Mayan calendar writers ran out of paper and declared it the end of time, rightfully anticipating they wouldn't be still around by 2012 anyway, and so taking the rest of that day off. But it's not just the Mayans. What about the Irish priest Malachy who predicted all the popes leading up to the last one? That list is almost up now. This current pope is the second last one and when he goes there is only one left - Petrus Romanus - who will oversee the persecution and the tribulation and the final judgement of mankind. Yikes! And the current pope hasn't been looking the best lately, has he? Don't forget the Hopi Indian prophecies either. The first sign of impending doom for what they called the 'Fourth World' was the coming of the white man to America, with his long-horned cattle and his railroads. That was ages ago. Then they predicted further signs - electricity, oil spills and hippies. Their final “ninth sign� was a space accident. How could Hopi Indians hundreds of years ago have foreseen space travel? Gulp! Needless to say, Nostradamus also wrote many vague and intriguing verses, which can be interpreted to mean basically anything, so he probably predicted a global apocalypse this year too. Yes, it is all starting to make terrifying sense. And look at the world around us. Does it look like a viable, sustainable situation? The global economy is in meltdown. The planetary ecosystem has had enough of us humans trying to destroy it, so it is burning us out, as if purging itself of a virus. 4

>>>


And in the finest biblical tradition of apocalyptic end times, war and terrible rumours of war abound - not just any war, nuclear war! Could a thermonuclear World War III be about to kick off in Iran? America seems to have it in for Iran. Russia doesn't seem to agree with that. Neither does Iran, I'm sure. Is this the beginning of the end for humanity – war, drought, famine, plague, pestilence, nuclear holocaust ... is there no way out of this madness ???!!! Well, here's one happy thought to consider. If you want to miss 2012, Iran might actually be the best place to be. According to their Zoroastrian calendar the year is only 1390. They've got about six hundred years to go before 2012 even gets close. If you are in Iran, then you are sipping back piña coladas and watching the great 2012 fiasco unfold somewhere else. Bottoms up! Shay

Community They Switched the Light Back On! You certainly couldn't say Inspired Community Magazine was part of the concerted campaign, which had been going on since April 2011 (Inspired wasn't even born in April 2011) but there was a powerful article in issue 2 entitled, “Who Switched Off the Light?” It was a heartfelt personal insight into the closing of a great cultural landmark in Dublin. The article ended with a simple plea, who will turn the light back on? So it is with great joy that we can report the re-opening of the unique and beautiful Lighthouse Cinema in Smithfield in Dublin. Element Pictures are running the show now, and they plan to "screen the best of international arthouse and Irish cinema, as well as re-runs of classics and special events". Sounds the business. So well done to Element Pictures, the Irish government, the Arts Council, the Irish Film Board, and everyone else involved in switching the light back on. And as has been said at least once before, in the many twists and turns of the unpredictable story of the Lighthouse Cinema ... … ladies and gentlemen, the intermission is over, the screening is about to begin, please take your seats! 5


A few years ago I travelled to London to visit my brother Tom, who had been living there for a year or so at the time. He took the Tube train to Heathrow Airport to collect me and bring me back to his digs in Brixton. “Now Shaymus, I need to tell you something important. You have to be careful here. It's not like at home. People aren't so friendly. Don't look at anyone or they could start trouble. Especially on the Underground, keep your head down and don't make eye contact.”

“The leader of the skinhead gang was staring at me. Out of politeness I stared back.”

Community

It's Not Like That Here

The train pulled out of the station at Terminal One. The carriage was empty and my brother and I were speaking freely. We chatted for a while, catching up on the news. “How's da?” “What's your job like?” “I saw Wheelo last week, he was asking for you.” We became gradually quieter as slowly one, two, three people got on to our carriage. Then the nightmare scenario unfolded. A gang of four or five skinheads strolled in and spread themselves out across from us. My brother's body tensed up and I heard a panicked intake of breath, possibly a stifled warning for me as well, muffled into his chest. I was too green to take heed of it. I was in a new city, on my holidays, on the Tube for the first time. I was excited. I kept looking around the carriage. The leader of the skinhead gang was staring at me. Out of politeness I stared back at him. He stood up and walked over. He reached into his pocket as my brother flinched. “Want some chewing gum?” he offered. “Thanks” I said, taking one from the pack. My brother guardedly took one too and we chewed and chatted together for the rest of the journey. “Where you from? Ireland? Great. What you doing over here? Oh, you're brothers. You live here. >>> 6


How long you been living in London?” And so on till they got off the train, shaking our hands as they left. “Have a nice holiday!” From Brixton Town Centre my brother led me in the direction of his place, and the London initiation talk resumed. “That was nice, but I'm sorry it happened”, he said ruefully. “That will give you the wrong impression. It's not like that here. You have to be careful.” The protective lecture continued until we passed a small corner pub in the heart of residential Brixton. “Fancy a quick pint before we go home?” my brother suggested. We grabbed a couple of drinks and sat down. Before long, someone spotted the suitcase and struck up a conversation. “Oh, you're from Ireland. You're brothers. Hey Jimmy! These two lads are from Ireland. Come over and say hello. Jimmy's Irish too. Been here forty years....” A couple more locals came in and were introduced to us. It was hard to buy a drink after that, our hosts insisting on taking care of us. I sat at the bar with Jimmy, working through The Sun crossword, while my brother went off playing darts with a few of the others. As we stumbled out of the pub at closing time, my brother was laughing and shaking his head.

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly;

what is essential is

invisible to the eye. Antoine de Saint-Exupery

“Now I'm really sorry that happened. You have got the exact wrong impression of London. It's not like that here.”

As we happily staggered our meandering paths home from the pub, through the dark but welcoming streets of Brixton, periodically bumping into each other, suitcase rattling merrily along behind, my brother kept trying to insist, despite much unhelpful evidence to the contrary ... “It's just not like that here!” Shay. 7


Insight

What is Life? That which is born, dies. Is life but a puff of smoke from a forest campfire, Billowing upwards, lost in space? Is life but the breath of hoarfrost on a window pane, Turning to water, dripping downward? Is life but footprints in golden sand, Dissolving into beach with advancing tide? Is life but a shadow from the full moon, Undulating over grass, gone when the moon is covered? Is life but a field of glistening dewdrops, Melting into air with the rising sun? That which is born, dies. Be not attached to the things of this world. What is Life? That which remains, when all else is given up. Wallace 8


Culture

H2O - Friend or Foe? "Water, water, everywhere, nor any drop to drink." This quotation can be relevant to parts of the world where drought and famine are prevalent. Water is something we take for granted, but it is a luxury, and indeed a necessity - something that is well known by the many who are deprived of it. In religious terms water is hugely symbolic. At birth it is used to welcome us; in death it is used to protect us on our onward journey. One sermon that impressed upon me just how precious water is was the description of a daily ritual of brushing one's teeth!! The question posed by the priest in question was "How far does an African child have to walk for the same quantity of water to achieve this simple task?� To this day I have the good practice of water preservation, which is just as well, as we will be paying for that privilege in the not too distant future! Water is a powerful energy. It can cleanse and restore us. It is a thing of great beauty. It is an entity we should respect, and at times it commands our respect. Water can be benevolent and destructive. Its ebb and flow can bring people together and it can tear them apart. It can sweep brave fishermen away in one cruel blow; a moment of sporting pleasure can be a fatal accident instantly; and it can seep into the very core and foundations of a loving home or hard-earned business premises. For the desolate and down-hearted, it can provide a swift ending to their pain. H2O, friend or foe? Yvonne

Nothing is softer or more flexible than water. Yet nothing can resist it. Lao Tsu 9


One of my first lectures

in the Biochemistry class was given by a quirky Polish professor; he had a twinkly eye and he was obviously obsessed with his work. His office reeked of Sulphur and other odd chemical smells, and was interspersed with piles of seemingly chaotically-distributed papers and folders. “What is life?” he would shriek enthusiastically, maybe expecting his intonation would make us ponder the question more deeply. He informed us that life was traditionally seen as something that has movement, something that seemed to move in space by its own will, but that argument came to a halt when physicists discovered that seemingly immobile objects such as rocks possessed elements of intense motion – atomic and subatomic particles buzzing about at manic speeds! A more current theory was then offered, that life has the ability to procreate. These days it seems to me that the lines of life and death or unconsciousness/insentience are blurring again. It all depends how you view it. Consider that your body is made up from matter that was collected from apparently “dead materials” like Carbon and Nitrogen from the soil, then alchemised into a living being. Your bones are made of Calcium, Magnesium and Phosphorous, among other elements. Rivers of fluid and water run through you, and deep within, cells have a chemical burning factory operating, not unlike a fire burning inside you. Fire and Brimstone! What is going on? Unseen, mostly inconspicuous and ignored on a daily basis are the little life-makers of our bodies, tiny micro-organisms that facilitate and perpetuate fascinating transformations. Bacteria and yeasts are phenomenal alchemists. From “dead matter” they manifest lifegiving structures. Haven't we all been made aware, by constant advertising campaigns, how probiotics - bacteria living in our gut - are so beneficial for us? That is because they can transform foods into usable forms for our bodies. Fermented foods, such as foods transformed by yeasts and beneficial bacteria, are highly absorbable and provide easy nutrition for our bodies. The micro-organisms themselves have the ability to break down difficult elements like carbohydrates, fats and proteins, and make them more accessible to us. They also enhance our 10

Culture

Eat or Be Eaten


immune system. It is awesome to see how intricately and elegantly these processes are intertwined. Much of this knowledge has been around since ancient history and has been used by ancient peoples. Now we have to resort to Danone et al and Health Food shops to supply us with life-giving probiotics, but it wasn’t always so. Most cultures have traditional ways of getting the little critters to work for us. In Ireland the traditional ferment was buttermilk. Other cultures have their own versions – Turkish kefir (a type of yoghurt), Asian kombucha (a fermented tea), German sauerkraut (fermented cabbage), Korean kimchi (fermented vegetables), Japanese miso (fermented soya) - just to name some common ones. Sadly many of these traditions are forgotten or little used. It is a pity as these foods are cheap ways to prevent visits to the doctor, provided of course they are the real thing i.e. live, unpasteurised fermented foods. They are Homemade Sauerkraut Recipe so hard to come by that you may have to resort to • 2 medium heads of cabbage, making them yourself. are many excellent cored and finely shredded There books on the matter, but I • 2 tblspns unrefined sea salt will list one simple sauerkraut recipe.

Tip: add grated carrot and ginger for an alternative flavour. Toss cabbage and salt together in a large mixing bowl and begin to squeeze the cabbage and salt together with your hands, kneading it thoroughly to break up the cellular structure of the shredded cabbage. When the cabbage has become limp and released its juice, transfer it to a clean sealable glass jar. Pack the salted cabbage into the jar as tightly as you can, eliminating air bubbles. Continue until the cabbage is completely submerged by liquid, filling the jar to within 2 inches of the top. Seal and allow it to sit at room temperature for at least seven days, tasting the sauerkraut every few days until it is done to your liking. Transfer to the fridge or other cold storage where it should keep for at least six months. 11

A fascinating turn of events is that when life does seem to stop, it continues really. When we die, our “lifeless” bodies are digested by other types of bacteria and yeasts, so that this matter is returned to more elemental forms and made available to Mother Nature for further recycling. Where is Life? Where is Death? Whatever your view is on the matter, it can surely be chewed over and digested! Marianne


This is a very easy stew, originally from Spain, very nutritious and healthy, perfect to fill you up during these spring days. -

1 cup of puy lentils or green lentils 1 carrot, sliced 1 medium potato, cut into chunks 1 onion, chopped 1 courgette, sliced 2 teaspoons of paprika 1 tin of chopped tomatoes 3 cloves of garlic, chopped 2 tablspns of extra virgin olive oil Salt

Place all the ingredients in a pot, and add about 500 ml of water. Bring it to the boil, then cover and simmer until the lentils are soft (around 1 hour)

YUMMY HEALTHY CHOCOLATE SMOOTHIE This is a delicious nutritious healthy smoothie - sugar free, full of protein, vitamins and calcium. -

500 mls of rice milk 1 banana 1 ripe pear 2-3 tablespoons of ground almonds ½ teaspoon of natural vanilla extract 2-3 teaspoons of organic cocoa powder

Blend it all together and if it turns out a little thick, add a little extra rice milk. Enjoy with all of the family!! Carmen 12

Culture

LENTIL STEW


Insight

Unconditionally Yours

Who am I?

When ‘ego’ meets me, it does not get me; it does not see where I am coming from. I am a creator of bridges not walls. I do not measure, I do not score points. There is no hidden scoreboard. I seek to give, not for what I can receive back, but just because I can. I am your supportive friend, always wanting the best for you. I don’t do ‘envy’; I have no need for that. Your success is my success. When you shine, I shine. Your joy is my joy. I do not lose when you have achieved your desires; it merely gives me hope that what is for me is also on the way, and in the appropriate time it will arrive. Then we can rejoice again, my friend.

Who am I?

I have no need for expectations; you do not need to fit into any preconceived notions of who you should be in order to please me. I accept you as you are, because I love and accept myself firstly. In this 'now' moment, you are good enough, and I am good enough. You are where you should be, and I am where I should be. I don't want anything from you; I have no hidden agenda; I have no motives; I do not seek to gain anything; I do not have a void to fill. I am whole and complete and perfect as I am. I seek only to add joy to all my interactions; I am the icing on your cake. You can live without me, but life is so much nicer with me. And yet as a giver, I allow I don’t do ‘petty’, and mind games are myself to receive. Giving and receiving is a not for me. I am open and honest in natural flow of energy from divine to divine. all interactions. Life is easier that way. I do not hold back. Moments are precious and fleeting. If I think you look nice I tell you. If I think you are amazing, I tell you. I give you my time. I know I have nothing to lose by helping you to feel good or helping you move forward towards your success. I do not torment myself endlessly with thoughts of what will people think if I say that, do that, or see myself as being foolish. If what I I cherish your freedom; I say or do will make you feel better, then I do not need to own you, don’t think twice, I don’t hold back. If it or change you, or make you won’t, then I won’t say it... I won’t do it. more like I am. I celebrate Everything for the Greater Highest Good... our differences, enjoy our similarities. I see beliefs my choices are easy. as an individual thing; neither side is right or wrong; they just are.

Who am I?

Who am I?

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Who am I?

I celebrate your freedom, your independence, your autonomy, your empowerment. I have no need to control you or keep you down. We are equal; I want you to walk beside me always. I want to witness your unfolding, your blossoming, into the wonderful being that you are becoming; not because I want it to be, but because it is your time to blossom. I am the same with all, stranger, friend or foe. I am consistent and reliable and predictable with all, and in all situations.

So who am I?

I am ‘Unconditional Love’, and I am ‘Unconditionally Yours’ any moment you choose me.

Paula

Culture Wise Mike's Legal Lookout Hard Cases Make Bad Laws! A simple principle in law and in life. You rarely find the truth at the extremes. When you form your world view, see the whole picture. Be calm and clear and balanced. One example of bad laws arising from hard cases is the senseless undressing of people passing through airport scanners, because someone in another country once carried a stanley knife through. At a personal level, consider the principle in this context. Don't make life-changing decisions when you are upset. Avoid the temptation to react to a passing frustration with some grand absolutism. Never again!! Give yourself a break until you see things more clearly and then make your decision. 14


Culture

Questions and Their Timing

2011 is behind us now, 2012 a new beginning ... ... maybe not. The lessons of history still point to the wisdom of learning from one's mistakes and the value of asking the right questions at the right time. So let us start here ... ARBEIT MACHT FREI ... a chilling reminder of Hitler's Final Solution. These words were the last ones seen by prisoners entering through the grim gates of Nazi Concentration Camps at Auschwitz, Dachau and elsewhere. Arbeit Macht Frei – Work Sets You Free. That sinister motto was the doctrine of the Nazi regime, exhorting its subjects and its victims alike to make unquestioning effort and to find salvation through their labours. In fact, they were being led like passive lambs to slaughter. And what of the inner workings of the Nazi regime? Hitler's Final Solution was designed and operated by highly educated bureaucrats, engineers, doctors and industrialists to materialize the goals of a morally corrupt but all-powerful Nazi government. The Nazi system also had elements of a two-tier Europe. The elites of the regime operated the levers of control from central Europe, but the system allowed regional puppet regimes to operate under its watchful eye, with a warped (but efficient) bureaucratic machine ensuring that its corrupt values and policies were implemented across the continent, and beyond.

“It's funny how, when that system was brought to its end, many claimed they had no idea what was actually happening.”

It's funny how, when that system was brought to its end, many claimed they had no idea what was actually happening. Admittedly, the regime went to great lengths to conceal some of their policies and activities; but if people truly didn’t know what was happening, well, what conclusions can we draw from that? Before continuing, please understand, this is no anti-German diatribe. There were Nazis of all nations across this continent, and horrors perpetrated by many non-Nazis also, before, during and since the period in question. Nevertheless, a study of Europe under Nazi Germany at that time presents many important questions about why so few spoke out against it. Put simply, why did the vast majority at that time allow the utterly depraved Nazi ideology to develop unquestioned? 15


Well, conclusions, I’d like to posit a few. Consider first the hypothetical case of Mr. X. A lot of people like Mr X did know what was going on, or had their suspicions at least, but they turned a blind eye. Well, what could be done? They were powerless against the scale of the Nazi operation. And besides, they were personally benefiting by being on tier one. So, best to say nothing. Also, there were many like Mr Y, who possibly didn’t know, certainly didn’t question, and just got on with their lives. They were swept up in the momentum of the times. They knew their place in a system that worked well for them; and they lived within a consensus view of the inevitability and unquestionability of Nazi supremacy. So, what of the above analysis, and what has it got to do with anything today? Ah, now there is a question, and perhaps it leads nicely to the core of this short piece, “Questions and their Timing”. Mostly overlooked in favour of the answer, it is the question that is of utmost importance. It is the question that unlocks hidden motives, points to core values, and leads to further important questions that ultimately shine a light on the subject. An example of the power of a question (while not wishing to cause offence or take sides) was Mr McGuinness’ question to Mr Gallagher during the recent presidential election debates, regarding an envelope of a certain colour ... I suppose the rest is history; but history, like questions, matters, and continues to matter. For instance, what if people in the early Thirties had questioned the Nazi doctrines of racial superiority, or the need for such a big army, or the possibility of other and better ways to bring about change? And it's not just the questions, but the timing of the questions that is so important. If more people were asking more questions in Nazi Germany, maybe they could have come up with better answers, especially if the questions were asked earlier The price of liberty rather than later.

is eternal vigilance.

That leads us to present-day Europe, and a Andrew Jackson, few questions that seem to arise today. For Founding Father of one, where are we going with this grand European Union of ours? What are its core the USA values, and are they apparent? >>> 16


Is the EU a community of nations working together, or are we heading for a centrally-controlled, possibly unelected bureaucracy, whose values are unknown and unquestionable? And in light of the earlier example of a centralised elite bureaucracy with regional rulers, we must ask, are our elected Irish leaders now puppets to a degree, mere proxies to carry out the edicts of others? Are we in Ireland to be citizens of the second tier, or perhaps worse, the first tier, giving us grand delusions of ourselves? There is no doubt about it, when one sits down and starts asking questions, they naturally lead to deeper and more challenging questions. And then the question of timing rears its head. That question asks, is it already too late? Are we like Mr X, feeling powerless and asking what’s the use, or like Mr Y, just keeping our heads down and not asking at all? Maybe 2012 should be the year of the question. I hope its not too late. All great movements have a figure head or a symbol. Perhaps 2012’s should be the ? Paul S P I N N I N G T H R O U G H T I M E

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picture quiz answers - from page 3 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

A is for Apple Lacoste clothing Starbucks Coffee Company Lufthansa Airlines of Germany Royal Dutch Shell Oil

6. The ubiquitous Facebook 7. HSBC Bank 8. Toyota motors 9. Coco Chanel (Double C) 10. Coke (as drunk in Thailand)

... and now, in the tradition of all great magazine quizzes, we will sum up your entire character based on the number of correct answers you gave. See where you rank on the Corporate Personality Index - from consumophobic forest-dweller to world's leading venture capitalist? 0 correct: No Logo!! Congratulations, you are Naomi Klein’s superman/superwoman. You have never bought a consumer item in your life. You have no television, nor have you ever seen an advertising billboard. In fact, you live one hundred miles from the nearest population, in a house you built yourself using glass bottles filled with clay. You keep three years supply of tinned food in your shed - with the labels peeled off. 1-2 correct: A proper leftie - non-consumerist, non-capitalist, bordering on Communist! In fact, you may have just recently arrived in this country from Belarus. You recognised Lacoste, but only because you used to work in a factory that made Lacoste knock-offs. Welcome to Ireland! 3-6 correct: You live a healthy balanced existence. You watch television; you buy things. You think you form your own opinions, but unknown to you, your world view is actually formed by Sky News and Joe Duffy. You see and use these brands often, but still didn't recognise them. Advertising works on you. 7-9 correct: You are the original Celtic Tiger! You worked for a multinational corporation during the boom years. You say things like “touch base” and “going forward”. Like most corporate employees you only actually worked about an hour and a half each day. In between emails and coffee breaks you bought and sold shares on-line. You call yourself a “taxpayer” and you think Michael O'Leary should be Taoiseach. 10 correct: Now be honest, you didn’t get ten out of ten correct. No one knows that much about corporate brands. If you really did get them all right, then you are obviously one of the world's leading, aggressive vulture capitalists. At one time or another you partly or wholly owned at least seven or eight of these companies. You don’t count wealth in money, but in countries and governments in your portfolio. You keep two pet Doberman Pinschers named Rockefeller and Rothschild. The Queen of England needs an appointment to see you. You eat caviar and babies. And where did you pick up this magazine?!! 18


Insight

Gone Exotic songbirds who once sang gloriously for all the world to hear have vanished entirely. We find their remains only in a heap of thousands of tiny bones. Today there is nary a squeak out of the empty nest. Once upon a time they staked it all so rapturously. Once upon a time upside-down trees were the talk of the breakfast shift. Topsy-turvy trees; trees to defy gravity. Once they rose above Denali's shadow, Sleepy Hollow, sky-splitting peaks...rushing rivers‌fifty-miles views – flew over the rainbow. Precisely. Perfectly. The sun dimmed its lights for one minute in their honour. Prema

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I am a wave in the ocean to which I belong, for I am part of it. There are many other waves in this vast expanse of water. I have a few close neighbours, the waves immediately behind me and the ones immediately in front. It is normal that I cannot get to know all the waves in the ocean, for they are spread across immense distances, to the horizon where they meet the sky. One evening, when the great orange sun was setting and the sky was the most magnificant myriad of colours of pink and orange, interspersed with clouds of deep purple and mauve, the ocean gave me a name. My dearest wave in my ocean Thou art full of devotion. Thy name is now 1008 Believe in me and have faith Very soon thou will surge In my waters to ever merge. The ocean told me to keep this a secret and not to divulge my name to any of my wavelet friends, for they would not understand this sacred number and its mystical meaning of completion. So my busy existence continued day after day, rolling back and forth to embrace golden sands, whose miniscule grains became billions of glinting mirrors that shone their love back to the sun. O heavenly waves of ocean deep Thy waters in us do seep and seep. For without thee we could not be Glistening mirrors of beauty free. Thou washest these sands day by day That we may shine in godly play The wave understood the grains of sand and became ecstatic in the knowledge of their love, for it knew that its rolling back and forth on the golden sand had a special mission to fulfill. One fine day, a piece of driftwood landed on the wave, where it bobbed up and down for a short while until it landed on the sandy shore. O dearest wood, all a-drift Thou landest on the sands a-shift. Thy voyage on the ocean deep Held a secret for thee to keep.

>>>

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Insight

The Story of a Wave in the Ocean


The driftwood replied to the wise wave. O heavenly wave, I did float On thy crest of sacred boat. For once upon thy holy time I belonged to a tree divine. That gave all shelter, rain or shine. O yes, my life was all sublime. And then it all came to pass They came and chopped me with an axe. My life became the separation Of sacred tree all elation. The voyage was long and very wet But my will power was all set To ride on the crest of a wave That I my life would ever save. Now here I am on sandy shore 'Mongst mirrors of love ever more. The wave understood the driftwood and became ecstatic in the knowledge of its love. Some days later a storm rose, all of a sudden, and the wave became very choppy. It floated further along the sands into a rocky cove. Its other neighbour waves were now falling together on top of the wave, which created a jolly party to say the least. They had never been so close to each other. One might say that the stormy weather had managed to bring more unity in their existence. No wave made any complaint when they were, by force, thrown together. In fact, the lapping of their choppy lurching here and there created a beautiful echo of sounds in the rocky cove, which the magnificent sonority seemed to be ... Om Om Om, we are all ONE Om Om Om, this is our song. The sacred wind blew its tune To give us all this sacred boon. Om Om Om, we are all ONE Om Om Om, this is our song. Gradually the storm subsided and the night crept in. The stars and moon were already the jewels of the velvet black sky. The waves became less choppy and began to recede out of the rocky cove. This had indeed been an adventure for the wave and its neighbours. They had experienced a much closer contact than their normal daily rolling to and fro on the sands. And even though they had been brusquely treated by the storm, everything had happened for the best in the end. 21


The ocean had become calm and peaceful, and in the quiet night the moon and stars shone a message to the wave. O sacred wave, the storm has passed For it comes and goes very fast. Thou didst visit rocky cove With thy neighbours ever rove. The choppy waves here and there Played their symphony something rare. For Om is the sacred sound, All truth, profound, profound. The wave which basked under the moonlight became a beautiful hue of golden light and spoke to the velvet gown of the bejewelled night. O moon and stars up above Thou art jewels of nightly gown That twinkle down on me with love I cannot cry tears to drown. My love for thee is ever deep, I wish one day to surge In this ocean and to seep No more to dream, but to merge The bright sunny morning greeted the wave in the routine embracing of the golden sand. The shifting sand matched the shift of the wave, for after the storm there reigned a deep peace. As the wave slowly floated on the sand, it encountered a beautiful shell. The shell accepted the wave's gentle journey and echoed back from its inner chamber the memory of the wave's past voyages, some joyful, some drastic, all now done. O dearest wave of my devotion Thou soon wilt merge in the ocean. In my abode is wisdom pearl which waits for thee to unfurl. When setting sun in ocean sinks Thou wilt merge in a blink. That evening as the sun kissed the wave goodbye, it was no more. The shell, which carried wisdom's pearl, was carried to the depth of the ocean, content in the knowing that the wave had attained its own nature – ONENESS. Valerie 22


Being Human Four hundred and fifty little girls are on their best behaviour, walking in single file, fingers on lips in gestures of silence and reverence as they enter the church. It is the start-of-year school mass. The children fill the church, quiet as mice. Miss Moran feels a light tapping on her leg and looks down to see a tiny teary-eyed five-year-old face looking up at her. Janine has a sincere concern. She whispers desperately, “Miss Moran!” “Yes?” “I'm afraid in churches.” “Why don't you say a prayer to ask God to help you not to be afraid.” “What one will I say?” “How about the Hail Mary?” The girl quietly returns to her knees and obediently drops her head into her hands. Miss Moran continues to shepherd the other children to their seats until a second tapping is felt. She looks down at the same sad wet eyes looking up at her. “Miss Moran!” whispers Janine desperately again. “Yes?”, whispers back Miss Moran. “It didn't work!”

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Inspired Community Magazine - Issue 4  

Inspired Community Magazine is a free magazine distributed in Dublin, Wicklow and Kildare in Ireland. It is by the community and for the com...

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