About me

My name is Peter Scott-Gordon. I was born in Edinburgh in 1967. I was born backwards and could, as a child, sleep standing up. I was a slow developer and used to write back-to-front. I have since lost this ability.

My life was turned around by an English teacher in my second year at Comprehensive education at Firrhill High School. Mrs Beaton saw something in me. I think this was my imagination and graft and need to be as authentic as I could be to the world I faced.

I studied Medicine in Aberdeen University, graduating MBChB in summer 1990. It was in Aberdeen that I met the girl who was to become my wife. Sian is also a doctor and has practiced as a General practitioner for 30 years now. We have two children: Andrew who was born in March 1997 under the comet Hale Bopp (which was noted for its ‘high intrinsic brightness’) and Rachel who was born in summer 2000.

In 1991 I left medicine to study Landscape Architecture at Edinburgh University. Just over two years later I graduated with distinction and with the Scottish Chapter prize. I then started specialist training in Psychiatry and became a consultant for older adults in 2002. I retired fully from Medicine on the 20th January 2020.

My academic studies in both the sciences and the arts have left an indelible, yet wonderful mark, upon me. My journey between and across two cultures is the very basis of my writings and filmmaking. My website is called Hole Ousia which translates as the “whole being”. My general outlook is that science and arts are complimentary to one another and to truly progress understanding we need to acknowledge this.

I have always been interested in history: on the broad and everyday scale.  I am drawn to Walter Scott’s Antiquary who was “preoccupied on every level by the relation between past and present”. I am fascinated by narrative and the passing of time that science still struggles with. My stone sculpture, The Ageing Stone, is an expression of this relationship.

My many interests include philosophy, sociology, ethics, evidence-based medicine, neuroscience, medical humanities, the history of science and medicine, narrative medicine, architecture, horticulture, ecology, design, sculpture, poetry, archaeology, local history, family history, photography and filmmaking.

As a Trustee of the William Adam house Mavisbank, which remains ruinous, I wrote “Repeats its Love”.  This book covers the history of Mavisbank and the narrative of many of its occupants, including its last 100 years as a hospital.

The other book that I have written is “Deeside tales – The stories of a small glen”.  This book was the culmination of ten years research walking through the history of remotest Royal Deeside.

Both my ‘books’ are published on Lulu. I make no profit from them as this was not why I wrote them.

As an ‘underground’ filmmaker I have made over 1500 short films. The philosophy generally behind the films is that they should have no immediate separation into ‘two cultures‘: science and humanities. My films inevitably reflect the experience of their maker. In this I intend to make the point that science too must remember the complexity of human life.

“It is perhaps here that the role of literature and the arts generally can have an advantage, by the author exposing poor health choices and behaviour patterns, in ways which are more powerful and effective than that of the medical teacher or professor. The writer’s imagination and expression can change things. The word can be powerful” [Kenneth Calman].

E-mail address for Peter J Gordon: peter@holeousia.com


15 Replies to “About me”

  1. Thank you for your work in supporting the connection of science and the humanities. I just finished reading a short eBook entitled Mary Queen of the Scots, part of a series called Makers of History. Less than 200 pages if it was in print. Now I MUST read a more thorough rendition. Do you have an interest in this subject? Can you recommend one? It was merely accidental that I happened upon your blog and I am addressing my question to a real Scotsman as you seem to be both approachable and personable.

    Thank you for your consideration,
    David Glen Hunt
    Greensboro, North Carolina, USA

    1. Just back from family holiday in Skye. So apologies for delay in getting back to you.

      Alison, I will send you an e-mail as soon as I am up and running after oorbreak.

      aye Peter G

  2. This is great, Peter! I am a 3rd great granddaughter of John Gordon. I have visited his grave in Tooele and I have also read stories about him. My mother and I visited Aberdeen in 1969, because we wanted to see where he was from. I haven’t yet read your blog completely, but are you a descendent of John’s older sons who stayed behind in Scotland?

  3. Well, that’s awesome. Nice to meet you! I am going to do more reading here as I get time. Very interesting!

  4. Peter, I read your piece on David Ogilvy of Rashiebog in Glen Quiech, Angus. It is great that this old story, and David’s memory are kept alive. I know Rashiebog very well as I rented the neighbouring farm house at Shallgreen for many years. I am now just over the hill in Glen Clova (next door to Gella where David was born)! The lands of Rashiebog and Shallgreen in Glen Quiech have in recent years been taken over by the Laird family of Memus and many improvements made. Rashiebog is now accessible as never before. The old ‘College’ where he was educated still stands. I wonder what old David would think of the Glen now? Kind regards, James Nicoll, Brocklas, Glen Moy, Kirriemuir.

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