When doing nothing is doing everything

Yesterday was a day spent with my son. We played a closely fought set of table tennis, went for a swim during which we threw a football back and forth, duelled with with water pistols, and experimented with lying on the bottom of the pool. In the late afternoon we went to the cinema, picked up pizza on the way home, and watched Terminator 3 on DVD.

All simple things that were really just an excuse to spend time together, for a son to know that his dad not only loves him, he likes him. And for a dad to know his son not only loves him, he likes him. A time to do nothing more and nothing less than simply enjoy each other’s company and in the process to affirm one another’s humanity at some inexplicably profound level.

This is what my dad did for me, and now it is my turn to do the same for my children. I think it created in me a deep sense of belonging and “okayness”. I hope I am doing the same for my children.

It’s funny. If you asked what we did yesterday we’d both probably say “nothing much” but it seems to be that in doing nothing much we were doing something of incalculable importance.

Living inside an echo chamber

I heard a talk last year by the managing director of the ABC, Mark Scott, in which he described the contemporary media landscape as a series of echo chambers.  With so many sources of news available to them, people simply select those that reflect back to them what they already believe. Rather than being challenged…Continue Reading

If pornography is so bad,
why does the Bible give us the Song of Songs?

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Young people who are same-sex attracted (SSA) experience victimisation, harassment and abuse because of their sexual identity. Those who are open about their sexuality frequently experience abuse and rejection by family and friends. Consequently they do not feel safe about ‘coming-out’ and instead prefer to keep their feelings hidden. This silence can lead to self-harming…Continue Reading

Five New Year Wishes for the Church

1. A mature debate on same-sex marriage Within the Christian world there are a variety of principled perspectives on same-sex marriage, including diverse views within the conservative wing of the church. Yet it seems that this discussion is surrounded with hysteria. The moment anyone urges anything other than opposition to same-sex marriage they are pilloried.…Continue Reading

Joe Hockey ends the idea that Australia can help make poverty history

Yesterday Treasurer Joe hockey announced that next year’s international aid budget would be slashed by $1 billion. This decision marked much more than the cutting of the aid budget. It marked the end of the idea that Australia could play a significant role in bringing extreme poverty to a halt. In the last decade a…Continue Reading

Don’t be fooled. Children will remain in detention.

In the wake of the agreement between the crossbench Senators and the government, many are under the impression that no children will be held in immigration detention into the future. This is a misunderstanding of what was agreed. Children are currently held in immigration detention centres on the Australian mainland, Christmas Island, and Nauru. Prior to the current…Continue Reading

What the changes to the migration act mean

This week the Senate passed the “Migration And Maritime Powers Legislation Amendment (Resolving The Asylum Legacy Caseload) Bill 2014″. The bill results in sweeping changes to Australia’s treatment of asylum seekers. Reintroduction of Temporary Protection Visas When asylum seekers arrive in Australia they must apply for a protection visa. A protection visa gives them the…Continue Reading

Hugs from strangers

I was on the train from Newcastle to Sydney a few weeks back. It was a Sunday afternoon and the train was packed. I was sitting in one of the designated quiet carriages where conversations must kept to a minimum, phones are to be put away, and if you listen to music you must do…Continue Reading