Dave Andrews, an Australian Community Worker with some great insights into the Beatitudes. Click on the youtube link here:


The St Pauls Protest and the invisible hand’s own goal*

*Apologies for the mix of metaphor.

Rachel Mariner has definitely captured something with her proposal for a Winter Carnival and touring occupation around the Cathedrals of the country.

This sounds like a genius idea, but just a minute, how did we get from the intention to occupy Paternoster Square outside the London Stock Exchange to a tour of Britain’s finest ecclesiastical heritage?  Is this a sign of the end of the road for the protest or is it a journey right into the heart of the problem –one which will challenge the very idea of who holds the power in this country?

But first, a quick review of how the St Paul’s protest began as an accident. Legal action by the private owners of Paternoster Square,  aided by the Metropolitan Police kept the protestors out of Square but left St Pauls as the next best location.  (see Andy Worthington’s eye-witness account of its start)

For those of you who are sticklers for detail, Paternoster Square and St Paul’s Cathedral are neighbours – here’s the map…

I do believe that this protest outside St Pauls (and others to come, it sounds) has located itself as a piece of grit in the eye of a sleeping giant.  Those who make their fortunes as a result of Adam Smith’s Invisible Hand may just have scored a Maradona-style own goal which goes on to stir up a protest which will challenge all the rules of how the power game is played.

I liked Paul Mason’s comment on the St Paul’s protest, when he tweeted, “it might not have started a revolution, but it does seem to be kick-starting a second Reformation”.

Hopefully, it will go further than that.

The challenge to the church (of all denominations) will not stop with the resignations we have seen so far. I believe that there is a profound challenge on its way to the church’s door. 75 tents on its doorstep or even some troublesome candlelit marchers on tour (although these are to be applauded and appreciated) are just the start. On its way, one hopes, is the indisputable revelation and the church’s own startling realisation that it is addicted to power, wealth and status and over the centuries has built itself a complex web of alliances with those powers which its founder came specifically to disarm.

Welcome to Man Wakes Up

Man Wakes Up is about sharing ideas about how we can wake up, find inspiration to live lives that count, discuss ways we might try to make a difference, and defend each other from getting picked off by those powerful groups who view the world, its inhabitants, its nature and its resources as simply stuff they can buy.

Will Durst says, “Looking round at the world, if you are not confused – then you’re not paying attention”. Why that is so funny is that its true. At the moment, the world economy, the Arab Spring, is baffling to most of us.

This blog will point to inspirational writers and thinkers and communities who are starting to make some sense of this and as Gandhi encouraged us to ‘be the change we want to see in the world’.

Anyway, enough to start with.