Readers of the Being Human -blog may have been wondering why there has been just one new posting during the last three months. The sad fact is that my last posting was originally written nine days after a major surgery.
In the surgery my stomach was cut wide open to remove a cancerous tumor. I was also diagnosed with terminal cancer of the liver. Illness started eating me away already in the beginning of last November. Now I have lost 55 pounds in the process.

The low point came when my liver stopped working completely three weeks ago. I was given just days to live at that stage. In fact, I was asked by my doctor to write my testament 'immediately'. I was at that moment classed as too weak for any more treatment.
Happily, my liver started working again with the aid of cortisone and I survived that ordeal against all expectations. I also gained enough physical strength to start chemotherapy.

However, I don't know yet if chemo works for me as it has just started and it takes some time to see any real results.
I got my first three days of treatment last week. The side-effects of this rather heavy stuff are now kicking in. At the moment I am still too weak at mornings to fetch the morning-papers from the post-box. However, luckily I can well sit on my laptop and meet the world through it.

A coronal CT scan showing a malignant mesothelioma- - Wikipedia

I have had much time to think at my hands. I already see that thinking about things that are larger than my own sorry life has kept me going through this ordeal.
The more so, as I quite paradoxically feel that I have been liberated from many of the normal constrains by my situation. I really feel free now to explore new angles and new ideas.
In the current situation, I seem to have at least months left. If I can regain some physical stability, I am sure that I will soon be able to produce new stuff for this blog also.

All in all, this new situation has already liberated me from the constrains of daily toil in the newspaper, in which I have worked for over 20 years. My current sickness is incurable, and it seems that I will never return to work.
There are always two sides to every coin. I feel that this liberation will give me an all new kind of opportunity to think and write. Of course, the overall price for this freedom is rather steep.

However, I feel that I have finally a real chance for finding my true limits as a thinker and writer. I must admit that I am already secretly hoping that time that I have left could be extended to a year or two with the aid of ongoing chemotherapy, but now it still too early to say.
I simply was not pleased with my work as an economics editor anymore. I have for a long time already longed to be able to express my own ideas. I was simply tired of just repeating to readers what others think as journalists commonly do.

If I get at least some of my physical stamina back, I hope that I can write at least in half-hour -long stretches before resting. Hopefully this will be enough to create all-new content also.
All in all I feel that I have already reached the next level in intellectual development. I feel that even if my body fails my mind is sharper than ever.
This feeling could naturally be, of course, because of the heavy medication. Only time will tell. You, my dear readers, will of course be the judges for that.

grammar

I have received a strongly-worded complaint about the grammatical quality of this blog. Happily I can hereby announce that I have already taken steps to rectify the situation.
Of course, I could first defend myself by saying in my defense that I am a bloody Finnish foreigner. I have never lived for a single day in English-speaking country. In fact, I have learned English mainly by just reading a mass of books in that language in my adult age

However, I have bought same paid help. I have used the Grammarly-service at http://grammarly.com. I have marked the pieces that I have corrected and stylized with the text "This piece was completely refurbished on xx of xx at 2001X"
I started this grammar-checking in August 30th of last year. For some reason I started from postings of March 2011 towards present. All this time I have tried to go through one piece a day.
I have gone through nearly one hundred of my little essays or my 'secular sermons' during this period. As I have written nearly 400 entries to this blog during the last few years, there is still a lot to be done.

All this time I have tried to proof-read one of the old pieces in this blog a day. I just think that there already are many ideas worth preserving and presenting in a readable way, even if I say so myself.
Keeping up this proof-reading has naturally helped me to keep my spirits up during a deal during the long weeks of waiting. I first waited for nearly a month to get see a specialist who would find the culprit, then I waited two weeks my surgery. Then there was a month-long wait for the stomach to cure so much that the chemotherapy could be started and this time did not all go to waste with the proof.reading going on.

I did also use the same proof-reading service to my other main blog or A Little Book for Humanity at http://thelittlebook.blogs.fi. In this blog there are at the moment 147 great quotes by secular, humanist and free-thinking philosophers, scientist and writers.
The difference with normal quote-collections is that every published quote has really given me something new as a person. However, the biggest difference to normal quote-collections is that I have included the ideas that every particular quote has raised in my mind.

(This piece was Grammarly-checked on 23th of January, 2012)

Elsewhere in this blog about this subject:

What’s so special about death, after all?

http://beinghuman.blogs.fi/2008/01/07/what_s_so_special_about_death~3543260/

Why death is nothing to us?

http://beinghuman.blogs.fi/2011/06/04/why-death-is-nothing-to-us-11265808/