Category Archives: beautiful thoughts

How even the best writers are affected by bad reviews

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I have mentioned that I very much liked the writer Kenneth Gergen and especially his book,” The saturated society”

http://identitythoughts.wordpress.com/2009/02/11/the-saturated-self-dilemmas-of-identity-in-contemporary-life-kenneth-j-gergen-pt-2/

http://www.qualitative-research.net/index.php/fqs/article/view/553/1198e”

I think it’s  beautifully written and explains the bad side of post modernism but also how differently it could be used.He got a very good review on the Washington Post but later got a terrible one in the NYT.In an interview he told how this affected him badly until the man who wrote the review died ten years later,I’ll put a link in here later.http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=SweMLEe6TpgC&pg=PA294&lpg=PA294&dq=kenneth+gergen+the+saturated+self++washington+post+review&source=bl&ots=_lKF4I_lVi&sig=VEbgQl1ZpIwcLgfw3S5M5sI9__U&hl=en&sa=X&ei=JJ_VUtfLEeaP7AaviYHwCA&ved=0CGwQ6AEwCA#v=onepage&q=kenneth%20gergen%20the%20saturated%20self%20%20washington%20post%20review&f=false.

!He used to wake up at night with thoughts of what he’s like to do to this person.This shows how even someone of high quality can be wounded easily/

Most people who read English novels have heard of Virginia Woolf. She was highly acclaimed yet had breakdowns whilst awaiting reviews .Eventually she committed suicide during WW2.Her husband was Jewish and she was afraid of what would happen if the Germans invaded Britain.

But her mental health was fragile after losing her mother and favourite older sister in her teens and also possibly being sexually assaulted by her half brother.Despite al this she had  much happiness and is one  of the most highly acclaimed women writers of the 20th century…not much good  to her of course

Sylvia Plath a great poet  a generation after Woolf also committed suicide and later became known as one of the best poets of our time

http://www.neatorama.com/2008/03/18/writers-who-suffered-from-the-sylvia-plath-effect/#!scilW

Would you like to be a tormented genius and enter the literary canon or just be an ordinary,moderately happy person? Most of us are not so gifted in any case.

Some of us believe that others with more gifts,more money,more winning personalities are much happier,but it’s not true.Many geniuses are troubled.

On the other hand being troubled by itself will not make you a genius,alas.Everybody is troubled at times.Sometimes a poet may use it

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We need to trust the world before we can see

tWeeds or flowers I have become interested in virtue and perception.It began when I read  a little Aristotle about virtue being a habit.That was quite recent.Before that for many years I believed virtuous acts would follow from being able to perceive well.But when we are fraught our minds and eyes tighten up and so we perceive only what may be a danger to us.To perceive others well we need to be in a position to trust others and we need to feel secure.How is this possible?From my studies I read that our ability to trust begins with a trusted caregiver in infancy,[See” atttachment and loss “by John Bowlby reference to come] We may be able to become more secure later by good fortune,friendship and love.If not,I seem to get the idea that if we are insecure and nervous we cannot truly perceive others and they may be in the same position.If we are very afraid then virtuous acts may be hard to accomplish. The reason is obvious… when. we are concerned with  mere survival as a person , in that state what we do to others  may be impossible for us to consider.We cannot truly see them and so we cannot act well towards them except by good luck.Or if we are able to tolerate great anxiety,we may see better…. if not we are incapable…. Those whom we cannot see properly we cannot truly consider with feeling  and act on this feeling.We see them partly or mainly in terms of the fearful fantasies in our minds and cannot see them as  other and interesting.When we make a friend online we may feel safer but in fact we are more likely to misperceive them. When we are from a sad a or difficut background it may help greatly if we have some friends who might point out our errors if we trust enough to tell them.Or we may pretend to be hard and tough.Neither leads to virtue.If we trust God it may help but I believe we see God through the lens of our parents.. which is not good…depending on the parents. When we live in fear,we cannot see what is there before us.We cannot let go.We cannot accept grace and love nor give it.We will try to live by will power.Ironically people who are fearful inside can develop a shell of toughness and pride and so are not seen as vulnerable  and/or lovable.Tbey may seem frightening to others. This account may help to explain why politics is the way it is and also  we see that arguing is not persuasive when the other is not able to open up and see things more broadly.Arguing makes us tighten up and see less well.And it can be frightening too though some cultures find it more acceptable than others.

Here are some relevant blogs and articles

This author had a lot to say about perception… http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/obituary-marion-milner-1163951.html   http://susannanelson.wordpress.com/2014/03/02/happy-go-lucky/

http://glimpsejournal.wordpress.com/2014/05/11/the-real-bees-knees-stunning-micro-view-of-the-workers-behind-your-mothers-day-flowers/

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Losing one’s self again

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There are trends in society to encourage us to build our self esteem and to value ourselves… to develop and achieve  a place suited to our talents.. but what is best for me is when I lose myself in something.I was reading an old blog of a friend and was quite absorbed and went into a different state of mind..then I regretted I don’t manage to lose myself enough being  a housewife and having much on my mind and being busy.

Sometimes it can happen when we love a person.Sometimes a wonderful landscape feels like home.. other times a sunset across the Irish sea from the cliffs of the Isle of Man where myriad butterflies swirl and float over flowers and rocks.

Modern life, the News,talk,excitement of the wrong sort seem to lock us into  our self and frighten us so we forget the value of fining something in which to lose ourselves and grow as a result. Sitting by a river  fishing,knitting,sewing,a book, many things can elicit this response  And remember how horror filled was the self consciousness of adolescence and how good to forget one’s self being more comfortable and accepting of appearance and image..How to live like a wild flower for a time… and be happy not to be a rose but just a tiny wild geranium or a moderate  sized  gentle pink flower in a arden

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Living with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – a survival strategy

Living with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – a survival strategy.

A very good post and person.Do read it as it is  heartening

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Behind glass… a defense

Have you ever felt you were behind a pane of glass? I did once many years ago after a friend committed  suicide.It must be a protective  condition but it is painful and odd.Everyone else seems ok ,you imagine,but you are not a part..In reality many people may be feeling like you do and putting on a performance while out at work or socialising.We are probably wiser as we grow older as we know more people better and see we are not  unique in our suffering and pain; we know that feelings pass,even the worst ones and we may have become better at judging others and knowing if friends die  by suicide it’s probably not our fault

When one feels that way it has to be accepted for the time being, like all feelings,I found reading poetry helped me and also being with others in a group where I could sit and listen without pressure to speak.I like this poem from then.It was a favorite  of Simone Weil,the mystic.

LOVE BADE ME WELCOME  by George Herbert

 

 Love Bade Me Welcome – from Love (III)

Love bade me welcome: yet my soul drew back.
Guiltie of dust and sinne.
But quick-ey’d Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning
If I lack’d anything.

A guest, I answer’d, worthy to be here:
Love said, You shall be he.
I the unkinde, ungrateful? Ah, my deare,
I cannot look on thee.
Love took my hand, and smiling did reply,
Who made the eyes but I?

Truth Lord, but I have marr’d them: let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.
And know you not, sayes Love, who bore the blame?
My deare, then I will serve.
You must sit down, sayes Love, and taste my meat:
So I did sit and eat.

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A new author for me:Kenneth Gergen

Gergen faceGergen

Ihave been reading his earlier book,The Saturated Society which I also strongly recommend.I found it good reading and I now know what post modernism  is about for better or worse.He can be very funny too When trlating his personal experiences.If you can get these from your library you will be intrigued.And his prose is great too.

I am learning so much.

A plunesh bull in a kitch

A plunesh bull in a kitch

wittgenstein

And laughing too

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“The inner processes are very patient.”

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And of course the inner processes are very patient. The puzzle of humanness is
apparently not meant to be a simple affair to be easily mastered. Whatever deals
with human lives is naturally patient.
—Wilson van Dusen,

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