In Search of Mental Equilibrium

There are times in a person’s life when mental equilibrium can be almost impossible to find; and now is such a time for me. There is a man who has lied, cheated, run away and hidden in fridges, stolen journalist’s phones and held talks with the US about our public services, and still enough people are planning to vote for his party to enable him to be Prime Minister. Devastating cuts to public services are not enough to change their minds, nor are threats to the NHS, nor cowardice in the face of Andrew Neil (who, to his credit, did his best to shame Johnson into being interviewed.) Nope, the nation wants this guy and apparently the phrase GET BREXIT DONE, when repeated often enough, is sufficient to overturn all this. I simply cannot believe a single person would vote for him, let alone millions. It makes me wonder what has happened to the world.

It is essential to one’s mental well-being to have a break from all this, and yesterday I took the train down to Leicester to look round the shops and visit a friend in hospital. It was a horrid day, windy and wet, but nevertheless a welcome break and I was able to buy a couple of pressies; however I was less than gruntled to find a TV in the waiting room blasting out a speech by our glorious leader, necessitating a scramble for earphones and music.


It’s been a week for egotistical males, as last night we watched a documentary about Bikram Choudhury, the founder of Bikram yoga. I have long been sceptical about this form of yoga as it seems to embody the most anti-yogic characteristics of competitiveness and greed. I was outraged to hear that Bikram was trying to copyright asanas (postures) which he did not invent but which derive from ancient texts and practices and belong to everyone. He did not succeed but the attempt embodies the very worst of capitalism.

Despite studying under his own guru, Bikram seems to have known nothing of the ethical side of yoga; the do’s and don’ts or yamas and niyamas which also come from the ancient texts and include such practices as ahimsa, non-violence; aparigraha, non-greed and most importantly brahmacharya, sexual abstinence or, for those in relationships, sexual continence. This was the most disturbing of the accusations levelled against him; that he did, Weinstein-like, invite young women to massage him and sexually assaulted them in his room. He is also accused of several rapes but has refused to testify.

Sadly the US equivalent of the Crown Prosecution Service has declined to make this a criminal case in spite of the wealth of evidence against him, leaving plaintiffs to pursue their own civil cases. Bikram is in the same mould as Trump and Johnson and is still at large running courses in Mexico.

The film is well worth watching for the massive size of Bikram’s ego and for the way he quite literally stands on the backs of his students as they are performing asanas. And unless we vote him out, we can now look forward to five more years of Boris Johnson doing the same thing to the country.

Kirk out

3 thoughts on “In Search of Mental Equilibrium

    1. I have seen this and shared on Facebook. I’ve met ken loach, he’s the most self-effacing, down to earth man you could ever wish to meet. I’ll have to google negentropy though

  1. The 2019 election – which I’m confident will remembered as the last ‘democratic’ election in British history – is a very strange one, for sure. From the outset, there seems to have been a determination on the part of several previously thought-neutral parties that the ‘least worst’ outcome would be a Conservative victory. To this end, the BBC has gone out of its way to secure coverage favourable to the government and to place a negative spin on anything said or done by the oppostion. Just today, Laura Kuenssberg has delivered her own coup de grace with a tweet that breaks electoral law: to the effect that the postal votes so far counted ‘look grim for Labour.’

    It may be that even the opposition parties – themselves sick of the impasse that has prevailed since 2017 – decided that they had no option but to let the egregious Prime Minister have his way. They could have held him to the fire for longer – and had they done so, quite a bit of his perceived shine would have come off – but they chose not to and went like lambs to the slaughter. Corbyn is tired and longs to spent what remains of his life on his allotment, Swinson is an over-parted head gilrl, who will almost certainly lose her seat. These are not the leaders we need for these times. But I’m not going to quote that Yeats poem, because I don’t believe ‘the worst’ to be filled with any kind of ‘passionate intensity.’ They don’t need to be.

    There will be a three-figure majority for Johnson and a huge Tory presence in the post-industrial midlands and north. Even people who are using food-banks have expressed an intention to ‘vote Tory’.

    I don’t think this country has any kind of future in the short-term; probably not in the long term, either. But it’s the young I feel sorry for. I think if there’s one thing we can do, it’s to help them get out while they still can.

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