On suffering Lionel Milgrom Introduction Suffering in its myriad forms has been with us for eons. If anything, and despite medical progress (some might even say because of it), suffering is on the increase. We suffer on all levels of our being; physically, emotionally, and mentally. We train as homeopaths for years precisely so that we can try to relieve or in some way mitigate our fellow humans' sufferings. If we are lucky and reasonably good at what we do, we might be able to determine from what our patients suffer and respond accordingly. But do we ever ask ourselves what suffering is for in the first place? It seems a crazy question to ask because most of the time, humanity's suffering seems so random and pointless. A question such as this presumes that suffering could have meaning, a purpose even. As if the perennial "why me?" that at some stage we must have all aimed at the heavens, actually warrants an intelligent response. In this article, I'm going to try and do just that, on the way making wild assumptions about what it is to be human, and ascribing ridiculously anthropomorphic qualities to the rest of creation. I shall also be asking related questions, some of which are probably best left as such; which I suppose is another way of saying that I don’t yet have a clue about the answers. Political activists and religious fanatics need not apply Don't worry. I'm not going to go all religious on you. Well, that's not entirely true, as I'll be drawing on the some of the wisdom of one or two of the world's major faiths, and perhaps a minor one as well. You see the trouble is that as soon as you start asking questions like this, bigger ones crop up, such as what are human beings for, and ultimately of course the existential big one; what am I as an individual here for. Such questions are traditionally considered the province of religion (and once philosophy, but post-modernism and linguistic analysis seem currently to have stymied the chances of it being of any practical use in this domain). So I'd better come clean. I do NOT consider that our presence here and now is completely the result of some freakish happenstance arising out of this mindless fruit machine of a 15 billion year-old universe winding down. Essentially, this is a synopsis of the current scientific view of our raison d'être (actually, it has to be said that most of the time, we are patently not here and now, but more of that later...). So what is this suffering? Broadly speaking, we can divide human suffering into two kinds; so-called acts of God, and man-made. As to the former, we live on a troubled sphere: a fiery nickel-iron liquid core, surrounded by a hot molten and semi-molten mantle, all topped off by our nice wafer-thin crust of a home. Is it any wonder if, on occasion, the crust splits as the earth spews its molten guts all over us (e.g., Pompeii and Herculaneum)? And above and around us, the seas and atmosphere can and do wreak terrible havoc, courtesy of that dynamo for the whole system, the sun. Of course, this is as nothing compared to the knockabout violence of planet earth's formative years (or if we were to be suddenly struck by a couple of billion tons of random asteroid, or if a supernova went off in our local stellar vicinity: in both scenarios, earth would be toast). But we are a fragile breed and even after slowly maturing over 4.5 billion years so that 'intelligent' life could evolve, our mother planet still on occasion turns nasty enough to wipe out her children. One could argue, that as her children we don't pay mum enough attention and respect, e.g., our burgeoning populations devouring the earth's precious resources and the associated environmental pollution. This could be a dangerous tack, as it might suggest the faintest whiff of a causal link between so-called acts of God (barring perhaps earthquakes and volcanic activity) and our own carelessness. And, by implication, that somehow we are responsible for our own suffering? I'll leave these highly contentious points hanging for the simple reason that this article is not about apportioning blame. This most definitely applies to the man-made suffering that we inflict on each other. For blame presupposes certain moral imperatives - cultural, religious, political, familial, and (if Richard Dawkins is to be believed) genetic - all of which can and have been used to explain and even justify suffering. Historically, this has meant that all the culture of blame has ultimately begotten is... well, more suffering (viz, the 1919 Treaty of Versailles leading ultimately to World War 2, etc, etc, etc…). What I am trying to do here is not find some formula that will magically banish suffering: far greater minds than mine have attempted this task. No, but perhaps it is possible to get some inkling of what role suffering plays in our individual lives and in the greater scheme of things, and how it might hinder or, indeed, could be used to help in cure. So, what is suffering for? Open the box! In attempting to answer this question, it occurs to me that suffering does not occur in isolation. This is not meant to negate the strong feelings of isolation that many who suffer can experience. No, what I mean by this is that perhaps certain kinds of suffering could be the by-product of a process whereby our usual functioning is not allowed to happen because it is blocked, or subsumed in some way by a larger more all-encompassing whole. For increasingly, it seems to me that we don't live in just one universe, but several simultaneously. And these universes or ‘worlds’ are not parallel, but co-existing one within the other like a series of nested boxes or spheres (figure 1). Also, the functioning of one ‘world’ is dependent on and affects those below and those above. So, we could be thought of as existing in our 'human' world, but the next 'world' down would be organizations of cells and organs, and the cellular 'world' would consist of large organized molecules. Going the other way, we are part of a planet that is itself part of an organized solar system, which itself 1 is part of a galaxy, and so on. From the usual scientific perspective, this is all considered as one seamless allencompassing universe. However, scaling in the manner I have indicated could actually permit the arising of an idea of our place in the grander scheme of things. For in one sense we are individually insignificant (planetary scale and upwards), yet from another we are the universe from the perspective of the one's below, e.g., cellular: for us, individual cells are insignificant 2. DNA CELL HUMAN PLANET GALAXY FIGURE 1: concentric spheres representing the idea of 'nested worlds'. Each 'world' is for itself a whole, but is also a part of the next 'world' up, and constitutes 'the universe' for the next 'world' down. What is conventionally called 'the universe' represents 'all worlds' taken together (the atomic and all-galaxies worlds have been omitted). The ancients knew this and coined the phrase, "As above, so below", suggesting a kind of self-similarity between different levels. Thus, it isn't necessary to go trundling round the galaxy to find out about the universe: just take a look inside…. Modern science, however (and whether it knows it or not), is actually capable of putting some fresh flesh on these ancient bones. Let us consider for a moment, the rather large number one hundred thousand million, that is, 100,000,000,000, or more compactly, 1011. In descending order, this number has been found to represent very roughly:• The total number of galaxies in the universe; • The total number of stars in our galaxy; • The total number of objects in our solar system (not just planets and moons, but asteroids, comets and space debris all the way out to and including the Oort Cometary Cloud, the solar system's natural boundary with deep space); • The total human population on Earth in the not-too-distant future (on present estimates and barring major cataclysms, a number in excess of 1010 is predicted by 2037); • The total number of cells in a fully functioning and healthy human brain; • The total number of atoms in a molecule of human DNA. A possible ‘chain of creation’ or mere coincidence? But if we look at the relative dimensions of these different domains something even weirder pops out. Thus:• • • • • The whole universe is roughly 10 metres across: Our galaxy is about 1021 metres across: Our solar system is about 1014 metres across: 7 Our Earth is about 10 metres across: A human being is about between 1-2 (i.e., 100) metres in length: 28 A DNA molecule is about 10-7 metres in length: • An atomic nucleus is about 10-14 metres across. 3 Inspection of these numbers shows that the ratio of one level to the next is roughly the same; 107.This gives some more credence to the notion of scaling and perhaps where we are notionally ‘in the grander scheme of things’ (about 3rd from the bottom in the above 'chain of creation'). It is as if we are positioned at the exact place where the worlds of the very small and the very large collide. What for? Now, I realise this all sounds incredibly vague, and you're probably wondering what any of this has to do with suffering. In order to help explain, I am going to go way off on a tangent and plunge down into just one of these 'universes' - the world of atoms and molecules. But this isn't going to be some dry scientific discourse. I’m going to get anthropomorphic about the chemistry and biochemistry of iron. It's one of my favourite elements. • For rust, read ‘lust’ So, iron: it's the fifth most abundant element in the earth's crust and is pivotal for all life processes. Our cellular metabolism depends on iron-containing bio-molecules and without the oxygen transporting properties of haemoglobin, air-breathing 'intelligent' creatures such as us could not have evolved. So, I'm going to tell you about haemoglobin. This is the story of how nature devised a cunning molecule that, without breaking any fundamental chemical or physical laws, makes iron do something that is totally against its nature.4 First, though, let's talk about your car. Like most cars, it's probably made of mild steel, which means that given the right amount of negligence, it will eventually turn into a rust bucket. Because this is what iron likes doing best of all: combining irreversibly with oxygen in the presence of water to make red-brown hydrated ferric oxide, aka rust. Think of iron and oxygen as being like a man and woman infinitely and terminally attracted to one another, and you won't go far wrong. For, they can't keep their chemically binding 5 'hands' off of each other; and water is the 'marriage broker' for this union. Once locked in each other's chemical embrace, it takes quite a degree of force to prize them apart. The Iron Age (the Industrial Revolution was its last great swan song) only came about because some bright spark found the right conditions to separate iron from oxygen to make steel: upwards of a thousand degrees centigrade and plenty of coke. So, separating iron from oxygen gave a boost to human evolution - and more efficient ways of killing each other. In chemical terms, we would say that, with the aid of water, iron and oxygen react to produce something (i.e., rust), which is of lower energy than either. By combining, iron and oxygen's natural tendency to move to a state of equilibrium (or lower energy, comfort, call it what you will), is well satisfied. Clearly their chemical 'passion' for each other provides the driving force for this movement. But wait. A human being turns over (i.e., takes in and excretes) about 10-15 milligrams of iron per day (upwards of 18-20 mgs, if you are a female of the species during a period). Now, with that amount of iron floating around our systems, plus being awash with water and oxygen, how come we aren't clogged up completely with red-brown, gelatinous rust? Or, to put it another way, if we were, and because of rust's incredible insolubility, it would be necessary for every one of us on the planet to consume daily the entire water supply of New York State, just to shift all that rust from inside us. So here comes nature’s clever bit, for she has specially devised large bio-molecules to contain iron, which stop it doing what it wants to do most: combine irreversibly with oxygen. Of these, in my opinion, haemoglobin is simply the best. It’s a big protein, specifically designed to carry just four iron atoms in separate, connected compartments, but in such a way, water cannot get near them. Haemoglobin is water-soluble on the outside, but like an oil drop on the inside, so water is excluded from its interior. Also, each iron atom is 'crucified' (i.e., held by four strong chemical bonds at right angles to each other) within a naturally occurring nitrogen-containing red pigment molecule called a porphyrin (figure 2: similar magnesium-containing green pigments called chlorophylls, drive photosynthesis). N N Fe N N Figure 2: Iron ‘crucified’ inside a porphyrin: each iron atom in haemoglobin is held by four strong chemical bonds to nitrogen atoms, which are part of a red pigment molecule called a porphyrin. The net result is that oxygen attaches itself to iron all right, but now it can just as easily fly away. In other words, oxygen's attachment to iron is now reversible. What happens is that on an oxygen molecule's approach, an iron atom shrinks ever so slightly, trying to move towards the oxygen molecule, but embedding itself ever deeper in its porphyrin ‘crucifix’ (figure 3). Figure 3: Before oxygen attaches itself to the iron atom, it is slightly too large to fit snuggly into the porphyrin (left – deoxy-haemoglobin). However, as oxygen approaches, it causes the iron atom to move towards it by shrinking it slightly, so that it now fits neatly into the porphyrin (right – oxyhaemoglobin). Because the iron atom is connected to the surrounding protein, this tiny movement causes haemoglobin to change its shape. And because the iron atom is also linked to the protein, its tiny movement is amplified and translated around the protein, causing the whole haemoglobin molecule to change its shape (figure 4). Iron and its porphyrin Figure 4: Schematic haemoglobin expanding as it takes up oxygen. Each iron atom is hidden inside its porphyrin (seen edge-wise on). Haemoglobin consists of 4 sub-units held together by chemical bonds (left: de-oxy-haemoglobin - represented by springs and clasps), which stretch and snap respectively, as oxygen is taken up (right: oxy-haemoglobin). This means the molecule seems to breathe into a relaxed R structure. When oxygen is given up, the molecule contracts back into a tense T structure. Thus the tiny movement of one iron atom is transferred to the other iron atoms making them more susceptible to picking up oxygen reversibly. The haemoglobin is then transported from the lungs to the tissues (inside red blood cells), where the raised carbon dioxide level causes the whole process to go into reverse, releasing the oxygen. So, when haemoglobin picks up and releases oxygen, it expands and contracts in molecular mimicry of the way we breathe. Okay, this is all a very roundabout way of saying that the whole apparatus of the large protein molecule that is haemoglobin is designed for one thing: to stop iron doing what for it comes naturally, i.e., get into oxygen's irreversible chemical clutches. Now comes the anthropomorphic bit. So how do you think iron feels about this? Iron? Feel? This has got to be the daftest question ever. But wait: iron has been impeded from doing what it wants to do most; combine irreversibly with oxygen. Iron and oxygen's ardour for each other, suitably dampened by iron's 'crucifixion' inside a porphyrin, and then wrapping it up inside a big bio-molecule like haemoglobin, is what keeps us alive. This means that iron has been forced into serving a purpose beyond itself. In terms of the 'chain of creation' mentioned above, we could interpret this as several nested 'worlds' - the biomolecular and the human ‘worlds’ - interacting with each other. And for this to occur, iron has to 'suffer', that is be impeded from doing what it likes doing most. So, how does iron feel? Gutted, I would imagine. But then iron is one of my favourite elements, and its suffering doesn’t last forever. After about 3 months (albeit an eternity in molecular terms), the red cells are broken down, haemoglobin is rendered into its constituent amino-acids, and the iron is taken down from its ‘cross’ and released from bondage. Equilibrium vs purpose The technical term in chemistry and biochemistry for 'doing what comes naturally' is ‘achieving thermodynamic equilibrium’, a state of rest where all chemical activity ceases: in other words, stasis. Left to themselves, this is the ultimate fate of all chemical reactions. Of course, iron is not the only one to 'suffer' by not being permitted to follow its natural inclination towards equilibrium. The biochemistry of every living cell is so intricately controlled and tuned by feedback, that none of the reactions going on inside it can achieve thermodynamic equilibrium. For if they do, the cell dies. Thermodynamic equilibrium means death. By contrast, a cell is an open, complex, perpetually chemically reacting system, operating far from thermodynamic equilibrium and constantly interacting with its environment. In so doing, it achieves a dynamic balance, which maintains its holistic integrity, and serves a 'higher purpose' by also being part of a greater whole, i.e., a structure, an organ and, ultimately, us. As the living 'cells' of a 'higher being', i.e., the earth, what do we or could we serve? And if we are not ‘serving’ then are we not akin to the cancers that seem to be on the increase in our species? For in our bodies every cell has a ‘purpose’, a ‘reason to exist’, be it nerve, skin, bone, intestinal, etc. But cells aren’t ‘born’ into this. Every cell ‘evolves’ into its ‘purpose’ from an undifferentiated ‘foetal’ state. It is when a cell for some reason cannot fulfill its purpose that it seems to go back to behaving like it did before differentiation. That is when it becomes selfserving, out of control…. and cancerous. With regard to our current existence on planet earth, we could be said to be in a similar unfulfilled state of self-serving ‘un-differentiation’. We can perhaps begin to discern here the possible outline of a universal principle, which is that "Suffering occurs in all systems regardless of complexity when spontaneous movement towards equilibrium or dynamic balance is impeded." Of course, the meaning of the word 'suffering' has now become highly generalised beyond its normally understood context of human misery. It suggests that it might be the 'glue' which binds all these nested ‘worlds’ together, and it would mean different things at different levels. Or it could just as well be completely incomprehensible. For to compare iron and oxygen’s ‘suffering’, i.e., their modified chemical behavior in haemoglobin, to the thwarted carnal ambitions of a man and a woman might be considered fanciful, yet is comprehensible metaphorically. They are impeded from achieving self-serving thermodynamic equilibrium, and it is by so ‘suffering’ that iron and oxygen serve a purpose beyond themselves. A cancerous cell, on the other hand, could be thought of as ‘suffering’ in a different way. W.H. Auden, writing about the death of a friend, referred to cancer as ‘life unlived’. A cancer cell has somehow been impeded from achieving its ‘purpose’ - a healthy dynamic balance with itself and its surroundings - so it goes ‘rogue’ (and in so doing destroys its cellular environment, leading ultimately to our deaths: modern biochemistry would reverse this chain of causality, i.e., cell goes rogue which leads to inability to achieve a healthy dynamic balance, etc). But what could possibly be the 'suffering' of a planet, or a solar system or a galaxy? Perhaps this simply reflects the shortcomings of anthropomorphisms: ascribing human attributes to that which is normally considered nonhuman, but still, it does make you wonder. Or could it be that there are some questions which we are simply not open enough to be able to receive an answer? Before I finish this section, I'd just like to throw in another bit of anthropomorphic fancy. Given the tentative generalised definition of suffering above, and the notion that it could be the 'glue' binding all together, what would it mean to suffer willingly, i.e., consciously? Could this be interpreted as 'love', the vital ingredient that makes the ‘glue’ sticky? All of which means we are now going to have to address the knotty problem of what we mean by consciousness. What does it mean to be conscious? No, I'm not going to trawl through the last couple of thousand years of philosophy, or get embroiled in psychology, neurology, and brain biochemistry. I am simply going to take a big Alexandrian sword to the whole Gordian Knot of the problem. And as ever, it starts with a question: whom are we referring to when we ascribe to ourselves the personal pronoun "I"? Think about it. We are creatures of body, emotion, and mind (some might baulk at the noninclusion of ‘spirit’ in this list: again, I'll return to this later). Yet when, if ever, do all these elements of our being actually work together harmoniously in the service of our overall self? When our bodies' are hungry, we say, "I am hungry". When our emotions are disturbed we say, "I am angry, sad...", etc. Similarly, when thoughts appear in our minds, we say, "I think..." In other words, at any one moment, any individual part of our being can (and does) lay claim to and direct the whole. And this isn't just semantics: we each live under the illusion that we possess a single unchangeable "I", and that we are fully conscious self-determined beings. Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. What we celebrate as "I" is arguably a fleeting parade of individualised, short-lived desires, emotions, thoughts, and feelings, each king of our existential heap for a moment, then giving way to the next.1 The lights are on, but nobody is at home. This we glorify with the term 'consciousness', and it is in this state that we eat, drink, make love, make war, do business, think thoughts… and suffer. How could it be otherwise if our selves are constantly at the beck and call of different parts of our being, each one making its own powerful but fleeting demands at the expense of the whole? There are moments, however, brief flashes of a more complete awareness when all the parts of our being work together as a cohesive whole. Under these circumstances, we feel a connectedness with ourselves and with everything else around us (one-ness) that transcends our usual notions of space and time. Now, it might be possible under these circumstances for something else to ‘appear’: perhaps this ‘something’ needs a coherent aligned ‘container’ before it can put in an appearance. Poets, sages, and mystics down the ages have all described this state, and it has been given different names by the different religious forms it originally energized: the Christians call it ‘grace’; Hindhus call it ‘enlightenment’; Buddhists call it ‘samadhi’. It is this that I shall refer to as consciousness: everything else could be described as the mere flickering manifestations of various states of semi-consciousness. Could this be what Christ meant in the Garden of Gethsemane when he is reported to have said to his disciples, "Awake; sleep not! Ye know not the hour of the day."? One might feel or intuit that such a fully conscious state is our natural birthright and perhaps it is, but as we are, we’re far from it. For could such fully conscious beings mindlessly slaughter one another, or allow a situation to arise where large numbers of fellow human beings starve to death, while a minority live in plenty? Of course, this presupposes certain qualities of a more fully conscious state that it might be impossible to test or prove 'objectively'. In defence of such a presupposition, most of those beings in the past reckoned to possess full consciousness (e.g., Christ, Buddha, etc) have been (admittedly, anecdotally) peace loving and compassionate. From which the unavoidable conclusion is that, assuming a simplistic inverse relationship between body count and consciousness, we must currently be living during the least conscious epoch in human history. What price the intelligence (and resources) required to put a man on the moon, if we can't stop killing each other or resist turning our home planet into a stinking, over-heating junk yard? And what perverted, moral imperative-ridden travesty has religion become when it exhorts its followers to kill in the name of God? Again, it is tempting to lay the blame for this state of affairs on something or someone, but this is not the purpose of the exercise. A more urgent question is, in terms of the nested ‘worlds’ idea mentioned earlier, are we as we would like to think the earth's 'finest’, made in the image of God, etc, really punching our existential weight, living up to 'expectations', delivering of our full cosmic potential? This is a hard question and the answer is even harder. Whose expectations; what cosmic potential? Where can one find a decent (cosmic) plumber these days? The Dervishes belong to an esoteric sect of Islam called Sufism, and they are famous for their ability to turn on the spot for ages without falling over (hence the phrase; whirling Dervish). While twirling, a Dervish will place his hands in an interesting position. His right hand is held open and upward toward heaven, as if preparing to receive something. Meanwhile, his left hand is also held open but facing down towards the earth, as if preparing to give. I cannot think of a more compelling metaphor for what our possible purpose here on earth might be: receivers and transmitters, but only if there are no blockages, interruptions, or dislocations in the flow. "As above, so below": could it be that man's purpose is to act as some kind of conscious nurturing conduit between these various nested ‘worlds’? In other words; man's possible role could be to help maintain 'the chain of creation' at this level of existence. For such a 'cosmic plumbing' job, a fuller consciousness would be required. But just as iron in haemoglobin has to be impeded from following its natural oxygen-binding inclination so that it is forced into serving a ‘higher purpose’, could it be as we are not fully conscious enough to willingly fulfill this possible ‘cosmic plumbing’ role, that this is the ultimate cause of our suffering, our fundamental dis-ease? Conclusion It might be thought that by tabling this last question, I have broken my own rule and apportioned blame; in this case, placing it squarely on our own shoulders. This is not the case. For becoming aware of our state of unconscious non-integration should not be viewed as yet another unquestioned tenet of belief from which, ever more contentious moral imperatives arise. A saner approach might be to attempt to realize this fully and experientially as an objective fact of impartial self-observation. This could be helped by realising that any more conscious state is not occupied indefinitely. As with all our states, we are labile within it: we move in to it and out again. Which means that it is just as vital to acknowledge our passing, as well as our arrival into it, and not try to hang on to past ‘glory’ (as if one could) like some spiritual 'badge of office'. Consequently, there is no room here for arguably the worst mind-game of all: 'spiritual one-upmanship'. In the quest for being and a fuller consciousness "We are all equal; and all equally beggars."1 Which is all very well, but how is any of this supposed to help our patients? If the analysis presented here is anywhere near correct, then there is a calling as never before for us humans to attempt to become more fully conscious. This is not at all easy to respond to, however, primarily because we think we already are! The various parts of our being seem unused to habitually cooperating, let alone faithfully serving one master; our selves. But didn't Samuel Hahnemann hint at this in The Organon, paragraph 9 on the Vital Force? "In the healthy condition of man, the spiritual vital force, the dynamis that animates the material organism, rules with unbounded sway. It retains all the parts of the organism in admirable, harmonious, vital operation, as regards both sensations and functions, so that our in-dwelling, reason-gifted mind can freely employ this living, healthy instrument for the higher purposes of our existence...." (My emboldening: the only thing I would change here would be to replace the word 'mind' with 'self'). Thus Hahnemann considered it axiomatic (i.e., so obvious as to not require proof) that the healthy condition of man has to include the ability to engage with some higher purpose. Therefore, apart from addressing the symptoms of dis-ease as observed by the practitioner, might not helping to bring people back to full health also include the (absolutely and completely non-ideological!) fostering of a desire to connect or reconnect the various parts of their being (physical, emotional, mental), so that perhaps a growing awareness of higher purpose can be nurtured, how ever that may be conceived? In so doing, it could well be that during those brief moments of integration, we become viable receptacles fit to ‘receive’ something else: some might call this spirit, perhaps (although not in the sense that Hahnemann uses the word when describing the Vital Force: for Hahnemann, Vf is fully embodied; that which might ‘enter’ during holistic integration would be conditional on many factors, including the preparation and duration of that state). But as ever, this is something to be individually verified (or not, as the case may be) by objective and impartial self-observation, not bludgeoned into people by yet another set of badly-understood, hand-me-down, and holier-than-thou moral imperatives. Suffering might then take on an altogether different meaning, because at this point, it has the possibility of becoming conscious and is therefore potentially of practical value (than suffering unconsciously. Please note: this is NOT to be taken as an invitation to engage in sadomasochistic practices). Now comes the crunch; for do we not share with our patients this all-too-human semiconscious but periodically conscious condition? Homeopathy means ‘similar suffering’; which is why, if we are healers, we're certainly of the ‘wounded’ variety. Thus, as we help to heal our patients, are we not also helped (courtesy, as ever, of the magic of entanglement) to heal ourselves? And, when all’s said and done, is this not something that it could be well worth getting out of bed for every morning...??!! References 1 2 3 4 5 P.D. Ouspensky, In Search of the Miraculous, Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd, (London), 1980. See the films, Men in Black 1 and 2. P. Morrison and P. Morrison, Powers of Ten: About the Relative Sizes of Things in the Universe, Scientific American Library (New York), 1982. L.R. Milgrom, The Colours of Life, Oxford University Press (Oxford), 1997. The Eagles, Life in the Fast Lane, circa 1975.