Archive for February, 2012

Tales from the trains #3

[Notes from my rather epic journey to St Andrews a few weeks ago. It kept me amused]

And that was that.

We came we theologised, we left.

We had a poetry night, which is more awesome than it sounds.

I think I get poetry now. This is always been a personal bug-bear of mine; that I never really got it; that I never really got the significance of it as something more than mere transfer of information.

The key it seems is hearing it spoken. Perhaps in 10 different accents with some Ardbeg on the go.

I remembered some Seamus Heaney. Somewhere back in my memory it was there, unused and untouched but there all the same.

But the week ends as quickly as it begun

I’m at the beginning of my epic return, troy is conquered, I have a dangerous and mystical journey to get back… I’m sure I’ve heard that before…

I’m hoping southbound will be a bit smoother than northbound was: so far so good. I’m on the 1657 from haymarket to Birmingham. I have a whole table to myself. I have a flask full of coffee and a power suppply. Too bad the graphics card finally and conclusively died yesterday. Virgin trains give you free wi-fi? That’ll do nicely. Shame i’m confined to iPhone.

3 hrs of this. I’m a little buzzing with excitement at the prospect. God I love trains…

I have 3 hrs to hang around in Holyhead waiting for a ferry. You can imagine how much fun that will be.


Module 1 Unit 4 – Radical Hermeneutics

And the last one…

Tales from the trains #2

[Notes from my rather epic journey to St Andrews a few weeks ago. It kept me amused]

So yeah, I know this wasn’t the most efficient way to get to St Andrews, but it is a kind of transport, travelling adventure.

I spent an hour and half in holyhead train station this morning. What have you ever done?

I was shouted at by a toddler, I was cold and they sneakily stuck us on a train replacement service instead of a train. There were almost fisticuffs for the seats.

It was never made entirely clear that there was actually more than 1 bus coming for the 100 or so passengers. Hence the anxious panic.

Bus is no way to travel. At least for me. I get nauseous when I try to read so i’m limited to headphones and podcasts.

The woman in front of me has a mid-sized dog on her lap. i wonder where the term came from – mid-sized, it makes it sound like a VW Golf, it’s kind of mid-size. It’s a very nice dog, lies there quietly and I don’t notice it piss on the seat once.

After 90 mins on the bus we’re in Ryll. I remember being here on a BB camp a long, long time ago. I may have been 14. Imagine that, i was 14 once.

With an hour to kill I spend my time in a chip shop eating lovely fish, horrible chips and surpisingly appetising mushy peas.

There is a scrum back at the train station as the angry mob (my fellow passengers) attempt to storm the turnstiles, just as the passengers are leaving the train we need to get onto. Hilarity ensues. By which I mean gruimpiness, swearing and angry looks.

The attendants were blissfully unaware of the situatin letting the two masses collide into each other in some amateur hour version of CERN.

We all get a seat somehow, on a 2 carriage train smaller than any even Northern Ireland railways seems to have to offer.

This train goes for 20 mins. We get off (scrum style)

We get on another train heading fro London, and there are no seats and a repeating announcements that those of us with rail sail tickets wil be castrated and fed on our own genitalia if we fail to leave the train at Crew.

So I’m in crewe. Huddled over a pint beside a power socket, recharging, figuratively and literally, for the final assault.

Tales from the trains #1

[Notes from my rather epic journey to St Andrews a few weeks ago. It kept me amused]

8am Dublin-Holyhead

I envy the people who can sleep. Sleep anywhere I mean.

A half-empty ferry on a wet Sunday morning, and people are sprawled out all around me sleepng like babies. Their cheeks elevated on rolled up sweaters to keep their skin off the faux-leather cushions.

The MV Ulysses. Joyce would be chuffes I’m sure.

I forget how much I enjoy travelling. Or perhaps this is just commuting. I’m not sure what the difference is. Maybe the weather.

It’s all about getting a seat, and the train connections. And waiting rooms where I can ge a power point for the lap top. Such an amount of work and entertainment I have to occupy me. If I can just keep the battery charged.

Module 1 Unit 3 – Texts and Interpretations

And another

The Dignity of Difference

God is universal, religions are particular. Religion is the translation of God into a particular language and thus into the life of a group, a nation, a community of faith.

Sacks J. The Dignity of Difference : How to Avoid the Clash of Civilizations. London: Continuum; 2002. p55

Any thoughts on that? It seems that Sacks is suggesting that the universal is the key part and the particular less so. Though he may be saying quite the opposite, I’m working this out as I go…

This, I think, is his key premise.

God, the creator of humanity, having made a covenant with all humanity, then turns to one people and commands it to be different in order to teach humanity the dignity of difference.


Module 1 Essay 2 – New Testament Ethics

Here’s another



Module 1 Essay 1 – Old Testament Ethics

So I figured, like most everything else I produce it should probably be available for those keen enough to read.

Feel free to leave comments or send me an email.

If anyone knows how to fix the slightly odd formatting let me know. I’ve just copy and pasted the embed code from google docs


February 2012