On the Queen as an example of duty

We have heard many opinions about Queen Elizabeth II, ranging from fawning admirers to resentful critics. For me, this range of commentary, coming out of ideological commitment is of little interest. Ideological thinking is inherently unreasoned, therefore of little value if we wish to speak of any profound human truth. Ideological thinking is a reductive …

A visit to De Mazenod Farm – A quiet Christian contribution

Sometimes you visit a place that just feels right. My recent visit to De Mazenod Farm was like that. The Farm is a development of the De Mazenod Door program, which was started by Fathers Tony O’Dell and Jarek Pachoki, both Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. It was named after Saint Eugene de Mazenod, a …

We never walk alone

This is a quick personal narrative about why I love walking in the forest. Memories, imagination, creativity. I walk for many reasons. Obviously, I need to get from place to place. Sometimes I need a workout, so I walk fast or listen to music that will make me walk even faster. Other times, I walk …

New Year’s Resolutions 2021

This year was a strange year. COVID-19 kept us at home and made many of us sick – I had extended family members who caught COVID-19 and survived, thankfully. As many of you know, my life revolves around my work as a professor of communication studies and communications management at McMaster University and my work …

A wake up call to end 2018

I had a powerful experience this morning in a Starbucks in Niagara Falls, Canada. I sat in my car enjoying the overnight oats that I made the day before, in front of the Starbucks where I intended to set up to prepare for a meeting later in the morning. My mind was full of concerns: …

The first snow – a moment of regret? or an invitation to contemplate?

We spend so much time in the waiting room of life, anticipating a future in which the conditions will be right for us to take action. The first snow fell today, in silent sprinkles. I am watching its flakes drift and glide in a zig-zag as they fall, in a manner similar to leaves. I …

The pain then is part of the goodness now

So sometimes we are confronted with the pain of others and its raw and its hard and it hurts, both them and us. You know, we make choices in our lives and sometimes, I think about those choices and it’s hard to see the path linking them through time… that golden filament weaving through the …

Swimming is beautiful

Last night I went for a nice swim at the Westmount Pool in Hamilton on the mountain. It was lovely to swim again after being away from it for a couple of weeks. I felt renewed. There is something really special about community pools. The energy of a legion of people doing aquafit or just …

Q & A on my first year as a vegetarian

It has been almost a year since I left meat behind and changed my diet. People often ask me about what my experience has been like: Has it been hard? Did it cause you social stigma? What was hardest to give up? Are you protein deficient? I thought I would compile my answers to some …

Time discipline

One of the comments I often get from people is: “You are the most productive person I know!” I am grateful for having the stamina to be so productive. However, I am discovering, as I become more mindful and self-aware, that my productivity is not the result of great planning, but of brute force effort …