Getting Personal: Ireland and More

 

 

 

It is time for a change, perhaps a permanent one.

For in the past I have long resisted writing blogs that were purely personal – which is to say strictly concerned with what I, Roger Buck,  might be thinking, feeling or doing today.

Whilst some blogs like that definitely work, I aimed to stay with the issues and only employ a personal flavour if it enhanced what I meant to say.

As of today, however, I surrender my resistance to the strictly personal. This post will be very much a personal update with some announcements – and I will be posting more like this in the future.

One reason for that is that it has been hard to post anything at all recently – this is my first post since February!

There are private reasons for that. At one level, I have been finding everything “all too much” lately. But apart from personal challenges, there are also my books, which have been more successful than I ever imagined and which have also created difficulties I never imagined, including difficulties in simply keeping up.

For despite months and months of typing lessons, five days a week, I could never learn to type (a fact which is related to some minor coordination problems which also meant I could never learn to swim or drive either.)

Now, I find myself repeating this a LOT to people. And the reason for my ongoing redundancy is that few folk in our fast-paced modern world, particularly younger people, can imagine how incredibly SLOW I am in writing. There are psychological factors here too – I remain very critical of my own pen. All this pertains not only to blogging, but also correspondence of which I now have more than I ever imagined.

And yet at the same time that every sentence I type comes out slowly, I need to write. Indeed, one reason I have not been blogging and been painfully, even sinfully slow in correspondence is that I have been desperately trying to find time for writing other things.

This includes not one but several new book manuscripts I am working on, of which it is still too early to speak yet.

However, I have also been PUSHING myself to pen things elsewhere. Chiefly, I have been unusually active at a new online forum for Ireland, created by an Irish friend Maolsheachlann Ó Ceallaigh, whose passion and concern for both the Faith and Irish culture deeply move me.

But much as I am moved by Maolsheachlann, that is not the only reason for my engagement at that forum.

As ever, the fate of Ireland haunts me. A few days ago I made an exceptional trip to Dublin – easily the most globalised of all the places on this island.

Now, this will sound naive, but what I saw in Dublin disturbed me. It disturbed me deeply. And it is naive because, of course, I know intellectually how utterly globalised Dublin has become.

But it is one thing to know something in the head, it is another to feel it in one’s bones, particularly when one lives in a rural hamlet and visits the big city . . .

Evening time in Dublin, I walk and walk the streets – shuddering. I shudder at the crassness, the commercialism I see all around me. And I shudder at the sight of  Irish people now utterly submerged in the rhythms of global culture and capitalism (the two are not easily separated!) whereas even a few decades ago the rhythms would have been far, far more referent not to globalism, but to Ireland herself and to the Church.

I shudder at a Dublin that is now, in terms of culture, so little distinguishable from London or Liverpool or Los Angeles. Dublin that was once the outstanding exception to all those other great Anglosphere cities – now apes them.

I walk through the streets of Dublin and the sheer unconsciousness of it all makes shudder, too. I know that if I stopped some of these Dubliners to bare my trembling heart, particularly young Dubliners, they would not have a clue what I was speaking of …

Or they might angrily dismiss my shudders, saying that the pain in my heart is nothing more than nostalgic delusion or the price we pay for ‘progress’. Indeed, they might say much worse.

And were I to reply, I would say: “But, young Dublin men and women, have you really thought about what you are saying? Have you actively contemplated the factors shaping Dublin, even thirty or forty years ago, versus today? Or are you just parroting a global mantra of ‘progress’, a mantra originating above all in the Anglo-American world and not Ireland …”

But my friend Maolsheachlann is not a parrot, I am glad to say. I see him thinking very carefully about what has happened to Ireland, moreover ever-questioning himself, ever-willing to revise his views.

I will have more to say of this anon – but here are indications why I particularly want to support this new forum which it seems to me may foster creative thinking in terms of saving the Soul of Ireland …

And if you, dear Reader, are either Irish or care about the Soul of Ireland in any way, I would urge you to join Maolsheachlann, me and others at this new project.

Now besides this new Irish project, there is another thing I am occupied with – an utterly new direction.

I am preparing video for a new Youtube channel, which, I hope to launch very soon. Tomorrow is Ascension day and I very much hope to be announcing this then. We shall see.

But let me return to personal things . . . I am fifty three years old. And, at this age, I find myself thinking ever more of death.

Death, it can happen to any of us, at any point of course. Still, I think to the hope of another twenty years or so. And I ask ever more what must I do with these remaining years, if I am granted them.

The answer that comes back certainly involves Ireland, working for Ireland. But it involves much more, too, including France and the rest of Europe.

As readers of my new book know, I argue that so often globalisation is really a euphemism for the Anglo-Americanisation of the world. The French, I think, see this better perhaps than any other people in Europe.

Yes, I look at my remaining years and I think to Ireland, but also France, two nations which, by the Grace of God, I have come to know and wherein reside, despite everything, I think submerged potential to resist that crass, rootless, soulless, ABSTRACT – so terribly, terribly abstract – parroting globalism that so clutched at my heart in Dublin.

My voice trails off …

I will just mention that I go into both France and Ireland very much in my new big book Cor Jesu Sacratissimum. Also, there are now more reviews appearing for that book, particularly at the American Amazon site, which you can go to here.

Finally, I apologise to those still waiting even after a long time to hear from me. As I contemplate my remaining years of life, things like my new manuscripts, Maolsheachlann’s new Irish forum or my upcoming Youtube channel must be prioritised, I feel.

I cannot only be a blogger or correspondent in my limited time. But even though I do not easily churn out correspondence like others, I do mean to respond slowly and carefully to quite a number of you.

Click here to see book at Amazon worldwide.

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8 Comments

  1. Posted 24 May 2017 at 21:17 | Permalink

    Glad to see you back Roger – I am pleased to learn about the success of the book,s and also about the new Irish Conservative forum. What a great idea!

    You may wish to check out my own blog, MAGA Ireland. I haven’t been able to get any traction – I hope the Irish Conservative forum will be much more successful.

    NB: Your views on Trump per se are unimportant – I have been reading your blog for a long time, and there is far more that unites us than divides us.

    I am in mourning for Ireland – I said as much a few minutes ago to a like-minded friend in Seattle:

    https://nightwind777.blogspot.ie/2017/05/little-house-on-prarie-meets-church-of.html?showComment=1495659641664#c1287418355314589716

    It’s the greed and self-centeredness that cut me to the quick, Roger – the rest is just aesthetics. I’m looking for a better place, a place I can breathe, a place where there is still some remnant of lived Christianity – perhaps a “Red State” (by God’s grace I a a U.S. citizen). I’m looking beyond Eire’s borders, as I cannot seem to find anything of that description here.

    • Posted 26 May 2017 at 09:25 | Permalink

      MAGAIreland, many thanks.

      I hear you being “cut to the quick” at the “greed and self-centredness” in modern globalised Ireland and I hear with sorrow what you say in those comments at that nightwind blog.

      But I can’t help praying you will find some corner of Ireland to be rather than the USA. I wonder how well you know the rural northwest where I am, near the Donegal border? There is still much that is very moving here.

      Your awareness of Ireland, pained as it is, is most needed in this country. I want to say “Don’t leave!” but of course you may be being CALLED elsewhere. I have certainly felt called to go elsewhere in my time.

      Also very glad to have your voice at that forum! God bless you.

  2. Stephen
    Posted 24 May 2017 at 21:25 | Permalink

    Thank you Rodger for sharing such a personal insight into your life. You will remain in my prayers.

    • Posted 26 May 2017 at 09:26 | Permalink

      Warm thanks for this Stephen – and much else! : – )

  3. Posted 24 May 2017 at 23:41 | Permalink

    Thanks Roger. Really enjoyed the Gentle Traditionalist and still have a few for sale in the repository. I see you are only a couple of years younger than myself and your comment about death is interesting because I find myself in the same meditative boat so to speak. I sometimes wonder if my Mother (born 1928) or Father (born 1911) looked at the world around them as they neared their ends and thought how much had changed in the short period they had been alive? My mother was quite disturbed by the scandals that struck the Irish Church in the 1990s and I don’t think ever fully recovered from it but she clung to the rosary, indeed when I went to see her for the last time, essentially to say goodbye, she still had the rosary in her hand. She had been unconscious for days after a stroke but thank God the staff were Catholic enough to ensure she died with it in her hand.

    • Posted 26 May 2017 at 09:36 | Permalink

      Gerard, here where I am in the north, I am witness to numerous older folk in my village dying like this – some of whom I’ve visited in hospital. And they are supported in their faith there. Thank God.

      These older generations of Irish are indescribably moving to me. Their prayer, their piety, kindness. I am grateful that they and your mother never lost faith despite the tragedy you invoke.

      Also you mentioned once buying extra copies for a library, or so I thought. I am very grateful you are selling them! This isn’t about my pocketbook, troubled as that is sometimes. It’s about the fact that I so want this book to reach the IRISH, above all. Indeed, a few days ago I was so gratified to hear someone in Ireland had given it to a secular cousin and that cousin has returned to the Faith as a result. Very, very grateful for all efforts to get this book out there in Ireland.

  4. Clay
    Posted 25 May 2017 at 18:08 | Permalink

    While I frequently disagree with you and what I consider your Nostalgia for a world which never was, I always know you are thoughtful, and sincere, which is refreshing as you correctly state in this world of hyper commericialism. The way forward is not in the past, but rather preserving what was best of the past, and making it new again, and in that we both agree that there is much in Catholicism worth preserving. Best of luck with your new journeys and god bless.

    • Posted 20 June 2017 at 07:20 | Permalink

      A belated thank you for your kind, generous words, Clay. Struggling to keep up with this new project amidst everything else …

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