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Strange times

Posted by Philip on 25 July 2016, 5:22 pm in , , , , ,

Brexit, Donald Trump and schools policing young men's facial hair — what's going on?It feels like the world is spinning backwards.

Young people despaired at the decision of Britain to leave the EU. Commentators are saying Trump may win the US presidency, simply because he believes in nothing but himself. Schools want to force 17-year-olds to shave.

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NEW MUSIC VIDEO: Who We Are

Posted by Philip on 12 July 2016, 6:39 pm in , , , , , ,

"Who We Are" is a music video with a vision of changing how we know ourselves & each other. It's all about us, made for the world to see.

Follow Jess and her friends as they explore and celebrate identity and self expression. They are young people with unique gender, sexual and functional expression who are proud of who they are.

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Kintsugi and the art of being uniquely flawed

Posted by Philip on 10 July 2016, 9:43 am in , , , ,

Kintsugi is the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with lacquer dusted or mixed with powdered gold, silver, or platinum. (Wikipedia)

As a philosophy kintsugi can be seen to have similarities to the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi, an embracing of the flawed or imperfect. Japanese aesthetics values marks of wear by the use of an object. This can be seen as a rationale for keeping an object around even after it has broken and as a justification of kintsugi itself, highlighting the cracks and repairs as simply an event in the life of an object rather than allowing its service to end at the time of its damage or breakage.

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Leadership as host, disruptor, navigator

Posted by Philip on 4 July 2016, 7:46 pm in , , , , , ,

As Director of the Be. Leadership programme, which is now welcoming 2017 applications, I answered some questions on what different leadership styles mean. Published on Stuff.co.nz on 1 July 2016.

What does being a leader as host/disrupter/navigator mean?

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Politicians – leaders or followers?

Posted by Philip on 1 July 2016, 9:33 am in , , , , , , , , , ,

We call our politicians — whether local, regional or national — leaders, but are they really?

Given they are reliant on public support and popularity to be voted in, politicians can't really show true leadership, particularly leading up to elections. They have to listen to the public and represent the majority view if they want a chance in office.

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Denying reality: how politicians change the world

Posted by Philip on 30 June 2016, 9:13 am in , , ,

Finance Minister Bill English argued in Parliament yesterday there is no evidence of increasing inequality in NZ. This was in response to the latest figures from Statistics New Zealand, which show the top 10 percent of New Zealanders now own 60 percent of all wealth, up from 55 percent five years ago.

English said, responding to RNZ News about a family working three jobs and 80 hours a week, "It doesn't mean their life is easy but it does mean there's pretty moderate but consistent progress in lifting our lowest incomes.

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Two important things #Orlando can teach us about homophobia and war

Posted by Philip on 19 June 2016, 4:04 pm in , , , ,

There is something about this article, by Chris Trotter on The Daily Blog, that paints Omar Mateen, who killed and injured over a hundred people at Orlando nightclub Pulse last week, as a victim of his homophobic religion and potentially closeted identity. And maybe he was.

Photo / www.zerocensorship.com

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My lyrics get used for Homosexual Law Reform anniversary and the tragedy of Orlando

Posted by Philip on 13 June 2016, 3:26 pm in , , , , , , ,

Today I learnt that composer Gareth Farr has used one of my poems, 'During these Days', in his commission for Wellington's Glamaphones choir. He also used a poem from Brent Coutts, "Naming Ourselves".

Gareth has even chosen to name his piece "During these Days" — how chuffed am I? I'm told the choir has been rehearsing it and it is sounding wonderful.

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Rape culture — how do we address it and end it?

Posted by Philip on 8 June 2016, 1:33 pm in , , , , , ,

Trigger warning: this post contains challenging references to rape and sexual violence.

I was moved by Madeleine Holden's piece in The Spinoff today, about Brock Turner, the 19- (now 20-) year-old Stanford student athlete sentenced to six months imprisonment after, in January last year, he raped an unconscious woman behind a dumpster. It's a passionate bit of writing, angry actually and, rightfully so, Holden asks the question, "What culture raised Turner to become a rapist?"

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Avoiding filling the void — an epiphany in the making

Posted by Philip on 30 May 2016, 3:48 pm in , , , ,

Sorry for being quiet on the blogging front lately. It's been a weird time, lurching from busyness to idleness in three or four day cycles.

Image: Len Jingco via Metservice

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