I am enjoying a week off from work, with no agenda but to relax; a delicious luxury! Fortunately, it has been raining off and on for the past couple of days. The refreshing spring downpours mean that I can indulge myself by doing nothing in particular, without feeling like I out to go out and do something. Relaxing and I have been strangers of late and the ability to watch a movie before breakfast, read a novel with no redeeming social value what so ever, sip gin and tonic and discover new music is splendid indeed.
Ever since I was a child one of my favourite forms of relaxation is to curl up with a good biography. So taking a break from Dan Brown’s latest thriller Inferno, I opened Richard Holloway’s auto-biography “Leaving Alexandria: A Memoir of Faith and Doubt”. I am grateful to my colleague Brian for introducing me to this wise, passionate, Scottish bishop who describes himself as an agnostic Christian. Holloway is perhaps best known as the “barmy bishop” a name given to him by the press while he occupied the post of Bishop of Edinburgh and head of the Scottish Anglican Episcopal Church. Holloway resigned from the church in 2000 and has become a popular broadcaster, lecturer and writer.
Holloway is a gifted story teller and his autobiography reads like an intellectual search for a better way that takes the reader from the streets of Glasgow (Alexandria is a suburb of Glasgow) to the halls of ecclesiastical power whilst he ponders his own faith and doubts. Holloway’s humour is compelling! His honesty refreshing! His story reveals a struggle with the institutional church moves him to encourage those who are seeking meaning to raid what is good from the institution and move beyond its boundaries.
Enjoy the short video teaser and let it wet your appetite for Holloway’s lecture “Sudokos and Symphonies: Killing Time” in which he argues for the value of play! I’m off to watch a BBC biopic on Stephen Hawking starring Benedict Cumberbatch of Sherlock Holmes fame! Let it rain!!!