Thursday, October 30, 2014


SHADOWS OF SHAMBHALA was the original title of what would become THE ASSASSIN LOTUS. The title plays on the theme of man's recurring quest for Utopia, the dark side of which is explored in the novel. The mythical Tibetan kingdom of Shambhala was the basis for the book and movie "Lost Horizon," (1937) which gave the legendary kingdom its more popular Western name, "Shangri-La."

Saturday, October 25, 2014

The Mind of the Jihadi

Fascinating article by Mary Wakefield gives rare insight into the making--and unmaking--of the violent jihadi.
"What we forget about IS, I think, is that the boys who herd off to join the jihad in Iraq or Syria don’t usually start off as monsters — they are made into them along the way. There are techniques for making sadists out of young men that have been practiced by militias worldwide and throughout history. In fact all that throat-cutting and torture, which seems so particularly diabolical for being unnecessary, is actually a crucial part of the monster-making process itself."
Read the whole piece HERE.

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Soul

The soul is like a little mouse.
He hides inside the body’s house
With anxious eyes and twitchy nose
As in and out he comes and goes,
A friendly, inoffensive ghost
Who lives on tea and buttered toast.
He is so delicate and small
Perhaps he is not there at all;
Long-headed chaps who ought to know
Assure us it cannot be so.
But sometimes, as I lie in bed,
I think I hear inside my head
His soft ethereal song whose words
Are in some language of the birds,
An air-borne poetry and prose
Whose liquid grammar no one knows.
So we go on, my soul and I,
Until, the day I have to die,
He packs his bags, puts on his hat
And leaves for ever. Just like that.

~John Whitworth

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Nothing to do with Islam?

"Which will come first, flying cars and vacations to Mars, or a simple acknowledgement that beliefs guide behavior and that certain religious ideas – jihad, martyrdom, blasphemy, apostasy – reliably lead to oppression and murder?"