9/13/2009

"The unexamined life is not worth living"

Those are the words of Socrates at his trial for heresy. He was on trial for encouraging his students to challenge the accepted beliefs of the time and think for themselves.



I don't pretend to be a modern day Socrates, far from it, but I do try to examine my life, destination and beliefs as much as possible.

One of the clear advantages of having a blog with my writing style is that I am able to go back these last four years and see how much I have changed, or not.

In two months time I will be 25, a bit of a milestone.

When I first started this blog I was 20 and I am a very different person now compared to back then. In many ways I am much more comfortable in my own skin, I know who I am and who I am not.

When I first started blogging I was a heathen Socialist with a great desire to fight, it didn't matter what I was fighting or arguing against so long as I was fighting.

Looking back on some of my blog posts and comments I've thought "Did I really believe that?"

I am now much more in touch with my faith and I grateful for that gift. Friends who have known me for a long time are quite shocked by my change with regards to religion.

At 15 I was very anti-Church, concerned only with the material benefit of the working class through the advancement of Communism.

I am still a left wing Socialist but guided now by an even stronger Catholic faith that provides meaning to empty words.

I am now much more suspect of the "isms". I am suspect of those who judge only by a label. I am much more concerned by the soul of a man.

What do they really believe that and do their actions bear fruit to that belief?

You can call yourself a Socialist till the cows come home but if you engage in anti-Socialist practises then your words are empty and you are either a political whore to be bought at the highest price or an opportunist.

I have time for neither.

I am also much less politically active than I once was.

When I was 20 I was the Chair of the QUB Cumann, a member of the officer board back home in my own Cumann and also involved in Chomhairle Ceantair activities in both South Belfast and South Armagh as well as being a member of the South Armagh Demil Committee.

At the moment I haven't been involved in political activities since the last election.

Work leaves my time much more constrained in a way that it wasn't during University but I am starting to feel that it is something different.

I got involved in Republican politics to effect change, to make a difference and I don't see much change being enacted at the moment.

I have a lot of thinking to do over the coming weeks and months.

In many ways I am much more questioning of norms than I once was. At 20 I had a lot of sacred cows and a lot of those have been slain.

As a result I am much more open to questioning direction and arguments than perhaps I once was.

I enjoy looking back over the blog pages to see how different, or not, that I have become.

There are lots of changes that I want to make in my life including career as well as personal.

I want to include much more travel into my life and think a move to a more global firm may offer that opportunity. We are in a recession and so opportunities are limited but that won't always be the case.

When I first started my legal career I thought that Criminal and Family were the areas that I wished to practise in. That has now changed and I am drawn much more to the Tax and Corporate route.

I want to learn a new language and I want to change other parts of life including perhaps further study.

At the moment these are only internal conversations but over the coming months I intend to place them into action.

A change of scenery is in the offing and that may be either Dublin or, if I can arrange it, New York.

I'd like to spend some time in the States and my ex works for the New York State Prosecutors office and loves it.

She has been trying to convince me to go out for quite a while.

I'm at a cross roads in my life and knowing what to do for the best is difficult.

The only thing I wish to avoid is regrets

I'm reminded of the quote from Polonius in Hamlet

"This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man"

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