Absorbed with Reading: A What I have been Reading Lately Post

My reading has led me to all sorts of directions, mostly away from my reading challenge and more into psychological/spiritual reading.  I was at the thick of reading Marriage, a History: How Love Conquered Marriage when my reading took a turn and led me to one book after another.  While I would love to review these books, I would have to do that some other time. Today, let me share what I have read and a few excerpts/quotes from each book.

  1. Brene Brown’s Daring Greatly

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“…the word vulnerability is derived from the Latin word vulnerare, meaning ‘to wound.’ The definition includes ‘capable of being wounded’ and ‘open to attack or damage.’ Merriam-Webster defines weakness as the inability to withstand attack or wounding. Just from a linguistic perspective, it’s clear that these are very different concepts, and in fact, one could argue that weakness often stems from a lack of vulnerability–when we don’t acknowledge how ans where we’re tender, we’re more at risk of being hurt.”

“If we want to fully experience love and belonging, we must believe that we are worthy of love and belonging…Belonging is the innate human desire to be part of something larger than us…true belonging only happens when we present our authentic , imperfect selves to the world, our sense of belonging can never be greater than our level of self-acceptance.”

“Hope is a function of struggle.”

Continue reading →

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Poetry: The Voice out of the Darkness

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Growing up as the youngest of five in a household torn by parental separation, abuse, aggression, and poverty I didn’t have a voice. I lived under the safety of desks and the company of stuffed animals. The turmoil I witnessed in our household was as turbulent as my own internal world. My under the desk world was never enough to give me reprieve from the darkness that was consuming me. At 10 years old, I attempted suicide. Continue reading →

Coquettes in Literature: When Women Play the Game

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[ This particular post has been sitting on my computer unfinished since April. It took a while to sit down and write it all out. I’m hoping to post more than just once a month. I’m crossing my finger. ]

Upon reading the last sentence from Jane Austen’s Lady Susan, I found myself thinking back to Turgenev’s First Love. These two short novels have at its center a woman endowed not just with beauty but with charm that could not only turn heads, but make fools out of the most respectable of men.

There is skill in being a coquette and in grabbing a wealthy husband and while it baffles the reader as to how these men could not see past the coquette, one can only surmise the skill behind it. Yet, I ponder over the the motives behind the coquette? Is she a problem society must address or is she a creation of society? Continue reading →

I met Camus and I threw him out the Window

308We were in the coffee shop when we started to argue.We got home and we were still arguing. We slept and when we woke up, the tension was still there. A week later and we were still unable to settle our differences. Eventually, we had to just part.

Camus, was great, but somehow, after a long time, I found myself arguing with a book. I picked up Albert Camus’ The Stranger for the Read Harder Challenge. He was one of those authors I see read by many, but never got to until recently. At first, I wasn’t sure if I liked him. The pace of the book was slow and it was hard to get interested. A few chapters in and I was hook, but as I reached the climax, I found myself in need for discourse and discussion. I struggled to agree with Camus’ resolution, hence my research on his philosophy of Absurdism.

With Camus, I found myself looking back and thinking that had I read this in my late teens to mid twenties, I would have subscribed to his philosophy. Presently, however, I am in disagreement. I felt, that his character’s rejection of the priest, his acceptance of his life and his letting go of hope is but a beginning of a journey. Camus’ however ended it too soon. Continue reading →

When I discovered the Universe: Aristotle and Dante

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I read this book early this year. I read it on a whim, but found myself deeply moved by it. I was asked to write a review of this book for another book blog. I struggled with writing the review, as I often do with books that affect me.  As the review came to life, it underwent a whole lot of re-writing. In the process, I found myself writing a letter to the two main characters—Aristotle and Dante.

It is those letters that I share today. I hope you enjoy this unusual take on reviewing a book. Continue reading →