AS MY 80th birthday party fades into memory and time seems increasingly precious, I no longer want to use important words lightly. One word that is very important to me is goodness. It seems so commonplace that it has almost lost its meaning - good day, good weather, good shot, good health, good meal, good point, good weedkiller...

However, if I take the Bible’s assertion that: ‘God is Good’ as my baseline then, when I say to a polite enquirer that "I am good" it puts things in an entirely different light. Am I saying that I am God or perhaps God-like in some respect? Fear of some kind may linger here. How dare I think, let alone write, such a thing? Surely that's blasphemy?

But no - as I sit here and write, I am comfortable with the weight of that insight. I am accountable to no one except this deep genuine part of me, and all that matters is my fully conscious honesty, integrity and congruence.

I can say that "I am good" and also that "God is Good". After all, God made mankind in His own likeness and so, surely, "Man is Good" also - in his truest, most self-aware, most honest self.

I long for a time when we are all able to acknowledge and to celebrate this amazing truth, and talk comfortably in each other's presence - not just to unknown readers of the Gazette – about our experience of the true goodness which we surely have within each one of us.

Ged Fidler Platt, The Good Consciousness Movement, Kendal

Sadly, Mr Fidler Platt passed away recently and the family has given permission for his article to be published