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THE GREAT

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Election 2015

Passionately Moderate MLC Candidate, Ramsay Nuthall gives a voice to people of every faith and none to stand against the forces of fear based hatred; bigotry and hysteria that threaten to tear our nation apart in this age of competing extremes...

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If Religion is the problem, What is the solution?

“(Religion) has two faces: one the face of truth, the other the face deception” - Arthur Schopenhauser “There are some forms of religion that are bad, just as there’s bad cooking or bad art or bad sex, you have bad religion too!" - Karen Armstrong

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Moderates ChallengeListen to Mother

“Australia is the most successful multi-cultural society on earth” - Malcolm Turnbull With both passion and moderation, this will still be true in 100 years

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The Aboriginal Gift to our Nation.

Our Aboriginal people have lived in biological and spiritual unity with this great land of ours since time immemorial. Deep in the indigenous soul is a gift for us all: a gift that can help us be reconciled to each other and live in peace.

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“Too Hard” is the easy option! (from Anglican Encounter - 2010)

 

I remember a conversation I once had with a semi-retired mental health professional who had worked within the Juvenile Justice system with young people in custody for several years.

Do you still do any work with young people?” I asked.  “No!” he replied with force and without hesitation: “Too hard!” 

 

During my working life of over 35 years, I have mostly worked with the young (as a teacher prior to ordination) and subsequently with the sick, the aged and the dying as a hospital chaplain, and finally with young offenders within the Juvenile Justice system. Of the latter, no experience has been as challenging, and for me painfully transformative as this. I have had every theological and social attitude, opinion and belief deeply challenged and often deeply changed. 

 

I have tried, even determined, not to call ‘Too hard’ even in the face of that reality. To call ‘Too hard’ is the easy option that can only lead to simplistic and mostly futile answers and actions. 

 

Saint Thomas Aquinas said that the proper objects of the Human heart are justice and truth.

Working with young offenders certainly takes us to the very heart of issues concerning justice and truth. 

 

‘What is Justice’? Of course ultimate justice is beyond the reach of any court. And of the law, I remember it once being said that the law was not about justice, but rather about social order and control. 

 

I would be hard pressed to identify a young person in custody who has not experienced some major experience, or even a lifetime, of existential injustice, and it is clear that they are more ‘lifelong’ prisoners of this existential injustice and its consequences than of the State. 

 

As a community, we encourage offenders to ‘take responsibility, for their actions, and this is right. But how much personal responsibility do we take for allowing the deep injustices of poverty, racism and emotional, physical, sexual and spiritual abuse to remain in the ‘Too hard’ basket?

 

And Pilates penetrating challenge to Jesus ‘What is Truth’

Whatever truth is, it’s a brave leader  in this self-protective and competitive age willing tell it or defend it!

 

The hard truth that is really ‘too hard’ is seeing the profound injustice of a young person possessing so much natural talent and potential locked away from the normal positive growth experiences that every young person should have, and knowing that had s/he been born into another cradle, life could have been so different.

 

What also seems to be really ‘too hard’ is our giving both personal and common ascent to the notion known in so many ancient cultures that ‘every man is the father of every boy’ – that ‘every man and woman is the parent of every child’. 

 

Our Good Samaritan of Luke 10:25 knew this!

Our famed passers-by, the priest and the Levite, just found it all ‘Too hard’!

 

Fr Ramsay Nuthall

Chaplain