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THE GREATER GOOD OR GRANDER EVIL

Western democracy has a long tradition of individualism which has usually been ascendant over collectivist regimes.

This article from Spectator Australia, February 9th, 2022, summarizes Australians’ experience with collectivist-inspired regulations, with individuals subservient to the collective.

From the beginning of the Covid epidemic, Australia’s governments have adopted collectivist policies: segregation; state-sanctioned discrimination; stalking apps, vaccine passports, state vaccine employment policies. All violated what Australians understood to be their individual rights. In order for government to protect themselves from public backlash, they drafted and implemented ever-more tyrannical health orders.

Government was desperate to enforce mass compliance to their public health plans. Any form of contrary debate or conversation that challenged the ‘science’ sprouted by the Department of Health had to be erased — not discussed.

My forthcoming novel ‘Turkeys Not Bees’ has a dilemma of individual and collective Covid actions.

See posts on Covid and my novels on my blog: martinknox.com

https://www.u3abrisbane.org.au/documents/classes/uploads/aspwymf19/The_Greater_Good_or_Grander_Evil_Spectatot_Feb_2022.docx

GOING WITH THE FLOW

It means taking what life gives you. A movie and a novel about endurance both have heroes who take as much as they can get.

In the movie Cast Away (2000) Chuck (Tom Hanks) frenetically controls workers’ goals for punctual delivery of parcels for his employer’s worldwide business. When a plane he is on goes down in the Pacific Ocean, he is cast away alone and starving on a small island without control of anything, except his striving to stay alive. 

His only hope is to build an escape raft. Without materials or tools, he slogs for 4 years. His raft is seen and he is rescued, by which time his wife has remarried and has a child. She still loves him, but the situation is not finally resolved at the end, as he waits for things to turn up, as he did on the island, contrasting with his former work-to-schedule life.

It is a very good movie.

Time is Gold by Martin Knox, has an elite marathon runner, Maxi, who learns to live in her own time, like Chuck did. She runs ‘in flow’ and contests the world record. The story has psychology, philosophy , neuroscience and physics and will keep you on the edge of your seat.

The movie and novel both have lessons on everyday endurance that wins.

On Amazon. Reviews: martinknox.com

RUNNING OUT OF TIME

Maxi Fleet is a marathon champion able to stretch her time, called time dilation, following Einstein’s Special Relativity theory, applied to neuroscience. In the novel ‘Time is Gold’, author Martin Knox explains the science of ‘flow’, the psychological condition optimal achievement, or ‘in the zone’. The story follows her career as she trains for an attempt on the world record in a future Olympics. Her story will keep you on the edge of your seat.

Available on Amazon. Reviews: martinknox.com

THE ART OF BODY MAINTENANCE AND PERFORMANCE

I compare my novel Time is Gold (2019) with a book I love, Robert Persig’s Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (1974), reputed to be the most popular philosophy book ever written, selling over 5 million copies.

Time is Gold is fiction with a similar philosophical underpinning.

The genre of Persig’s novel is a roman-a’-clef, in which real people or events appear with invented names, in much more than a travel story. Time is Gold is a coming-of-age epic adventure thriller.

Both books are steeped in Zen philosophy applied to adventuring. 

Robert Persig cared for his motorbike, often taking it to pieces and reassembling it, the way people care for their horses. In his book The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance he demonstrates his Zen philosophy of ‘quality’ living, with care as a compromise between mechanical classicism and romantic spirituality. His son, Chris, goes with him as pillion passenger on a long journey and learns his philosophy of ‘quality’. 

In Time is Gold, Maxi is a schoolgirl with running talent whose training is taken over by a team of expert coaches from whom she learns ‘extreme flow’, a philosophy of optimal performance time. Jack Cram is a university research student who helps his girlfriend Maxi to combine, physiology, physics, psychology and neuroscience and Zen in her training. Her story is punctuated with marathon race reports in high level competition.

Maxi tunes up her body for marathon running like a complex technology, in the Zen way, with her attention on goals and processes but not outcomes. Maxi balances physical and mental demands as she approaches Zen mastery.

The protagonists’ journeys are seldom downhill. Phaedrus, Persig’s autobiographer, contends with the aftermath of an earlier nervous breakdown. Jack’s career in industry gets off to a rocky start. These experiences open them to radical experimentation to achieve their personal needs. They have successes, becoming euphoric, with some poetic descriptions.

Maxi’s racing is punctuated by coaching dialogues, whereas Persig’s protagonist Phaedrus reflects between adventures.

Readers interested in endurance and resilience in any field of performance or problem solving will be enlightened by Time is Gold. Why do athletes inspire us so much? 

Available from Amazon. Reviews at https://martinknox.com

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