I was thinking this morning about how I like to hold on to a grudge or a resentment, even a jolly good hate. It takes a huge amount of effort to change my mind, to stop demonising the other person, to try and understand why they are like they are or just to let them be that way and move on. It always strikes me that while I am refusing to change, at the same time I wonder why the world is such a mess and why our leaders have to react, retaliate, invade and war. But how can I expect others to change when I won't? Is it possible that the amount of aggression each of us individually nurses in our heart is adding to and even feeding the amount of aggression on our planet? Is it possible that by resenting our parents or children, keeping that grudge against ex-friends and ex-partners, holding that resentment against neighbours, employers or employees, colleagues, the unhelpful guy at the counter ... we are actually aiding and abetting the massacres, the bombings, the genocide, the wars?
I was born in Ireland and grew up in Toronto, Canada with my seven sisters and two brothers. Left home at seventeen to live in a commune, then headed off across Canada with my pal, Carole, and we hitch-hiked around California for months, then back up to Vancouver(Van as we called it then) and across Canada with two more pals, Linda and Peggy. A year later, headed off to Malaysia and Borneo with Jeunesse Canada Monde/Canada World Youth for a year. Baik-lah! Back home, went to Trinity College at the University of Toronto (posh blokes) while also joining the Canadian Naval Reserve as an Officer Cadet. Trained on the east and west coasts of Canada every summer. Great fun. Then what? Hmm. Started to write books, dodgy personal life (that's personal but let's just say it's been a long time between drinks) started to wander around the world, had a darling daughter, settled down in Ireland, wrote more books.