ABOUT Windows on the world



The world is full of opinions. Even the most minor incident is reported, distorted, and analysed. Verdicts are pronounced, extrapolations made, and then on to the next scandal. Surely the last thing we need is another forum for opinion, yet here is a site just for mine.

Why should bigger-picture be different? Firstly, I am not out to make money or gain power, so I don't have to support political parties or commercial interests. Secondly, I believe in harmony and unity, which means I am not interested in promoting negative aspects. The bible commands us 'not to bear false witness'. The Buddhists go a little further, encouraging the individual to practice 'right speech'. In other words, do not harm others by inappropriate or thoughtless speech.

I trained as a Chartered Accountant, which means that for years I had to pay attention to mind-numbing detail. Later in life I was a director of a multi-national computer company, which meant seeing the whole picture: not just the company, its products, staff, shareholders, customers and suppliers, but the environment in which we operated. At the age of 42, I retired from business life and started writing, hoping to share some of my understanding and experience.

Our society today is so complex that it is easy to lose sight of the bigger picture. As information expands exponentially so we become less able to make sense of it all. We were told the most intimate details of the Monica Lewinski affair, but less prominence was given to the potential impact on the troubles in Africa or the Balkans. We tend to look at events in isolation: the visits of the leader of the Peoples' Republic of China, General Pinochet, and Mike Tyson, were all reported on the front page. But bringing these different strands together in an examination of policy does not produce a headline which would help sell a newspaper.

My aim, in bigger-picture, is to comment on current affairs in a way that might help provide a different perspective. I am not setting out to change anyone's political or religious belief system. But before we rush to condemn, ridicule, or shame those people in the public eye we should seek a wider understanding and focus on issues rather than personalities.

Harvey Tordoff
January 2000