Saturday, April 16, 2016

Necropolis - First Reading

In Late September 2015, I had the opportunity to have a sneak preview of the as-of-then unfinished book by Michel Weatherall, Necropolis. Once again, I have had the lucky opportunity to read its first (as of yet unpublished) manuscript.

One thing struck me. There are powerful women characters in this book.
Not damsels in distress nor secondary background characters. Not pretty eye-candy (well, some are). These are powerful women facing nearly insurmountable challenges.

From Donita, the adventuring, gun toting heroine from the '30's to Veronica ( (from both previous books, The Symbiot and The Hunt: Symbiosys), s), to the main character, Tamara.

(Spoiler) Even the struggles with its antagonists, Amber Miller, and the 1930 Alia Moubayed only to mention a few. Even Tamara's dead mother - Marie Gibbons - plays an intricate role. The 1930's Donita takes on men in one-to-one combat and even Lovecraftian monsters! Veronica faces down a madman!(Spoiler ends)

Yes, there are men in this book's character list, but its main characters are predominantly women.
I am impressed and happily surprised!

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Tong Il and Humanity's Unification

Of all the patterns (tuls) in Taekwon-do, I find the 24th and final pattern the most interesting. (I myself have only 'achieved' the 13th pattern, Po-Eun).

It is probable that I may never learn the pattern Tong Il But as unlikely as it is of me learning this pattern, I believe I can most definitely learn from this pattern.

The 24th and final pattern, Tong Il “denotes the resolution of the unification of Korea which has been divided since 1945. The diagram symbolizes the homogeneous race.”

Historically the concept of a Korean homogeneous race” is a scary idea. It would appear to have political agendas, hopes, aspirations and even discrimination, racism and hatred. However, I choose to interpret General Choi's views of Korea as a microcosm of the world.

Unification of humanity itself. 
The end of conflict. 

Whether or not this goal can one day be realized, it is undeniably a great and noble cause. Whether it be religious or political intolerance or ideological differences, we all share the same biology. We are one, whole and homogeneous people.

I believe Religion teaches to look out for one's own. The downtrodden, the poor, the sick. But Religion has always been insular - inward looking. It is still indicative of Tribalism. 
Spirituality, without the inhibitions and limitations of Religion teaches Compassion and Solace for all - without conditions or terms. 
I believe it is Tribalism that is humanity's biggest challenge today. I believe it is the biggest challenge this world currently faces.

I believe in this goal behind the philosophy of Taekwon-do. 

Ultimately, we are one tribe.

The Industry of Relgion

When anything becomes an industry it becomes compromised and corrupted.
Education, Health Care, etc.

When Spirituality becomes an industry it becomes Religion.
Religion is the Industry of Spirituality. Religion has been compromised and corrupted.