As I pick my way across my keyboard, I stumble upon many ideas, some new, others surprisingly old.
I have lived several lives, in different places, in different times and under very different circumstances. I've earned my crust of bread (or bowl of rice, if you prefer), by many different means and currently keep body and soul together by teaching English for Academic Purposes at universities internationally. I am interested in many things and am fortunate enough to have been able to study many of these.
The things that give me the most joy: seeing infants and children figure things out; seeing children eating with relish; seeing old people in love; Moorish architecture; jazz saxophone; and the prospect of rum-and-raisin ice cream.
The things that distress me the most: dumbing down; injustice; internalised oppression (especially amongst women); and children starving.
I consider my heritage to be those traditions that enrich our humanity through openness and love and that value and protect the intellect.
I most admire: physical prowess; spiritual resolve; and intellectual honesty.
My biggest weakness right now is that I've not read enough literature and that my apprehending the world and our human experience are still hamstrung by the legacy of the scientific method.
I most detest: pandering; fawning; submission to peer pressure; servility and sycophancy.
Currently I draw most of my inspiration from Hypatia, Xuanzang, the Isma'ilis, the Cathars, Alice Walker, Malala Yousafzai and my newly-teenage daughter.
I consider the greatest human achievements to be love, cities, writing and the control of fire.
What I find most tiresome: sophistry and corporate-speak.
At the moment I'm thinking a lot about the cultural and philosophical price we paid for the Enlightenment and Rationalism. I suspect we could have achieved these at much lower cost.
I would like to see out my days as: A writer of great fiction and as a (sexy) women's boot camp instructor. I can dream, can't I?
Where I'm at right now is: I think I have enough life experience to have something to share with my fellow humans and most of that I discover as I wade through what I already know, feel, remember, like and fear. I hope never to be able to explain this. It's magic and I prefer it just the way it is.