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Rumi and Love and Tolerance

I said after breakfast in the ‘Rumi Hotel’ in Konya to a Sufi from Birmingham in England:

‘The reason why Rumi is so important today is because he taught tolerance and love.’
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Neo-Hippies’ are back, it seems, in fashion. But I suspect many are like ‘neo-capitalists’ with little conscience.

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Trump and May

Donald Trump is truly absurd. He is not only a racist and misogynist and believes in torture but an extreme right -winger who denies the existence of climate change.
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Castro and Cuba

The ‘Jefe Maximo’ (Supreme Leader) Fidel Castro is dead. He may have become been a towering figure in the 20th century but for many he was a highly controversial and divisive one. His brother Raúl, head of the military forces, continues as president of Cuba. The ‘Communist’ regime totters but for the moment lives on.
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The UK referendum on membership of the European Union and the Freedom of Speech

I don't usually vote at the national level because there is no real choice between the existing parties. They are all committed to a national parliament and have top-down solutions. Voting only encourages career politicians; if it genuinely changed things, they would abolish it.

However,  I have recently voted in the referendum to leave the European Union mainly for the following reasons:

I would rather be a citizen of the world than a member of a narrow,largely white,undemocratic, centralized, capitalist superstate of Europe.

I don't see why 70 per cent of UK law should be made by unelected commissionaires in Brussels and UK judges should be overriden.

I don't see why rich European states in the north should dictate terms to poorer countries in the south of Europe, such as Germany with Greece. Greece will never be able to repay its debts.

It comes as no surprise that the head of the IMF, the President of the US and the main transnational corporations would like Britain to remain part of the EU. It would mean business as usual. 

I think there is more chance of Britain forming a loose alliance of countries of the world and to create a democratic, participatory, ecological, equal and free society in the future outside the iron fetters of the EU than within it.

I am in reasonably good company on the left as well as the bad company of the 'little Englanders' on the right. What unites them is a belief in greater democratic control over Britain's future although we differ widely over our beliefs, visions and goals.

Obviously, as my books and actions vividly illustrate, I am no racist. I also think we should help and receive political refugees from war-torn countries.

You may disagree with me but I believe in the freedom of thought, expression and action. It is only through adopting these principles that any moral or social improvement can be made.

I may disagree with you but I accept wholeheartedly your claim to express an opinion, whatever it might be.

Peter Marshall is the author of over 15 books including Demanding the Impossible: A History of Anarchism.


Welcoming Refugees

Europe is at present besieged by refugees from countries in the Middle East where their governments and that of the U.S.A have intervened militarily: Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and Libya.

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International Monetary Fund, World Bank, European Central Bank

These financial institutions are entirely undemocratic and wish to create a world of laissez-faire economics and unadulterated capitalism. They are owned by international shareholders and governments.
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The Sixth Extinction and Liberation Ecology

It seems that we are in the middle of a mass extinction, the sixth on this Earth. Previously this was due to natural phenomena but this one is largely due to human processes.  
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Notes On Liberty and Freedom

Liberty and freedom in English are often used interchangeably but there does seem to be a difference. Liberty, a word which comes from the Latin libertas, the Goddess of Liberty, seems more formal and civic than freedom, which comes from the Old English freodom and is related to Old Saxon. Freedom appears to me more personal and homely.
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I am the salmon which leaps in the pool

I am the salmon which leaps in the pool

In early Celtic poetry, there was no gap between human beings and the rest of the natural world. With the coming of Roman Christianity and Western philosophy it was thought that humans were somehow separate because of their soul or reason. A Celtic poem identifies the poet directly with nature: “I am salmon in pool”.

The following is thus inspired by the early Celtic poets:

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