Terry Fox: a shining example of one person’s ability to make a difference

Wonderful retrospective, thanks.

Robby Robin's Journey

Terry Fox was a young man who succumbed to cancer at the age of 22, a month short of his 23rd birthday. He died in 1981, 37 years ago. So how can a young man, dead all these years, be such an enduring inspiration in his native land of Canada and beyond? Well, it is to the credit of his family, who run the Terry Fox Foundation, to have kept his story alive. But Terry Fox, the young man who in the midst of dealing with his own cancer struggles decided he’d help other young people fighting cancer by raising money for cancer research, is the one who lived the astounding story.

Terry Fox was an athletic, fiercely competitive young man who grew up in British Columbia in western Canada. In 1977, at age 18, he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, which resulted in the amputation of his right leg…

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Be Gentle with your Mind

Thank you for this powerful reminder to slow down and live.

I can't believe it!

Here’s another poem by Steve Taylor, a message to all of us embedded in the constant involvement with media and other busyness: 

“Be gentle with your mind.
Don’t overload it with demands
or fill it with too much information
or pressurise it with too many deadlines
until it frazzles with strain
and refuses to work for you anymore.

Your mind isn’t a machine; it’s a sensitive artist.
It gets agitated easily, if conditions aren’t right.
And then it can’t think clearly, or give birth to new ideas and insights.

The energies of your mind are pure and powerful, like a clear fresh stream,
but they get polluted easily, if you don’t protect its environment.
And then you feel uneasy, as if your life is out of harmony,
and the world is conspiring against you.

So be gentle with your mind.
Give it time to rest and regenerate.
Allow it…

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Super-Size it

Wow, here is a great attempt to impart a little of the marvel and wonder that is our universe. Thanks guys.


If you live in a rural area, as I do, outside of the influence of city lights, you can often get a clear view of the night sky. I don’t normally make a special effort to look at the night sky, but on occasion I am drawn to it. I usually notice the stars when I return home on a clear evening. As I get out of my car, and before I enter the house, the night sky often grabs my attention. I pause for a moment, and try to absorb the enormity of it all. There are no words that come to mind, no thoughts, or even a sense of time. I find it difficult to focus on any particular star or any region of the sky. It’s as if I am staring into infinity—it really is an awesome sight.

The feeling of wonder that one gets when looking…

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The Inner Life of Animals

Just a little something to think about for a few moments.

I can't believe it!

“The idea that there was an abrupt break in the course of evolution, and that at some point everything was reinvented, is an idea whose time is past. The only major point of contention today is whether animals can think; that’s what we do best, after all.”

inner life animalsIn a way this quote summarises the essence of Peter Wohlleben’s important book The Inner Life of Animals: Surprising Observations of a Hidden World. He presents much evidence that the inner life of animals is very much like our own, perhaps except for the thinking faculty.

The evidence is extensive and overwhelming, a combination of scientific research and the personal observations of one who works on the land. For example:

  • ravens have a strong sense of right and wrong, and are very intelligent, using their beaks much as we do our hands.They and other species that live in social groups can match…

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Do the benefits of artificial intelligence outweigh the risks?

Just to stimulate your thoughts,

The Conversation Room

The discussion around Artificial Intelligence (AI) can sound a lot like Brexit. It’s coming but we don’t know when. It could destroy jobs but it could create more. There’s even questions aboutsovereignty, democracy and taking back control.

Yet even the prospect of a post Brexit Britain led by Boris“fuck business” Johnson doesn’t conjure the same level of collective anxiety as humanity’s precarious future in the face of super-intelligent AI. Opinions are divided as to whether this technological revolution will lead us on a new path to prosperity or a dark road to human obsolescence but one thing is clear, we are about to embark on a new age of rapid change the like of which has never been experienced before in human history. 

From cancer to climate change the promise of AI is to uncover solutions to our overwhelmingly complex problems. In healthcare, its use is already…

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We should be practicing for retirement our whole life

Thank you so much for sharing this as I personally grapple just a touch with retirement.

Robby Robin's Journey

Recently I wrote a blog post in which I observed that in many ways our 9-year old grandson was practicing being retired during the week he spent with us in August. Of course, it was a tongue-in-cheek comment, a throw-away line. Or was it?!

I’ve written at other times about the strange reality that we spend countless years preparing ourselves to enter the world of work: pre-school, school, post-secondary education and/or training, internships, etc. Then we work for 25-40 years – a long time, sure, although you’d be surprised how quickly it goes by! And then, given the remarkable increase in life expectancy, we actually may have an additional 25-40 years of retirement. Think about it: retire at 55 and live to be 95, retire at 65 and live to be 90. Retirement truly is a second career, and it’s entirely in your hands.

Bizarrely, all we are ever encouraged to…

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