women

For the wildest woman

For the wildest woman

July 1, 2020
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”For the wildest woman, the animus cycle of increase and decrease is natural.”

For the past… oh, five, no, seven, possibly going on ten years, I’ve had the urge to describe my experiences in terms of in and out, exhale and inhale, up and down. The way of the wave, crashing onto the beach, only to recede and gather force, to come at the beach again, and again, and again.

If you were to go through my writings, you’d find countless references like these, of me letting go, letting come, that which wants to happen.

”It is an archaic process, an ancient process. Time out of mind, it is how women approached the world of ideas and the outer manifestation of them.”

There’s a Duracell bunny within me, that can run for a long time, endlessly drumming away.
But I know, I have to let my batteries recharge now and again. Otherwise, this bunny will run dry on energy, and not be of any use to anyone.

”This is how women do it.”

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The Swan Thieves (book 1 of 12)

January 30, 2020
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in Tip
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“It was as if he simply did not know how not to be himself, and I felt his selfhood go down through me like lightning–I who doubted and second-guessed and analyzed every second of my own life.”

Started reading one of the books on my reading challenge… but was somehow drawn to pick up The Swan Thieves by Elisabeth Kostova instead. And why resist? If a book is calling to me, why not go with the flow?

“But most women were remarkably strong, I’d always thought; those who healed themselves were full of a deeper life afterward.”And how I loved this book. Thick, deliciously thick; weaving together now with then, through the eyes of not one, not two, but many more. Once I finished it, I gave the book 5 stars on Goodreads, only to have my eyes fall upon a couple of reviews by other readers. Some low ratings, and then, a very interesting 4- or 5-star review saying something along the lines of understanding the low ratings, as “nothing really happens” in the book. That got me thinking… and I agree. It is a very slow novel, with a lot of technicalities into the art of painting, about colors and brush-technique and fading light… and yet. What I love about it is just that. I am given a glimpse into the ordinary day-to-day-life of not just the main character, but of his wife, his psychiatrist, his art student, and of others, such as not just one, but at least two, and in a sense, even three artists, of a century long since passed.

Then there are the beautiful passages that I’ve marked.
And others that I simply let enter me as my eyes gently span page after page, sentence after sentence.

I love how I can find a sentence or two, or longer passages, that speak to me, in basically any book I read. Speak to my sense of aesthetics, curiosity, to my longing for romance, love, human touch. Sometimes making me connect dots to other books, other pieces of fact, of questions or ponderings I have. Sometimes tapping into my sense of justice, outrage; making me cry, laugh, strive to do, to be, better at being me, of letting more of me out, refraining from holding myself back.

“It’s a shame for a woman’s history to be all about men–first boys, then other boys, then men, men, men. It reminds me of the way our school history textbooks were all about wars and elections, one war after another, with the dull periods of peace skimmed over whenever they occurred. […] I don’t know why women so often tell stories that way, but I guess I’ve just started to do the same thing myself […].”

The Swan Thieves is a story of strength. Of skill and talent.
Of love, of sleuthing, of daring to live. Or not.
Of hope. Longing. Courage.

“Aren’t there things greater than public censure, things that ought to be attempted and cherished?”

Yes.
There is.
And to do so requires me to be me. And you to be you.


The book I am blogging about is part of the book-reading challenge I’ve set for myself during 2020, to read and blog monthly about 12 Swedish and 12 English books, books that I already own.

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Advent Calendar – December 5, 2019

December 5, 2019
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One of the female workers at the Kiambere plantation, here in the inner sanctum of the nursery. Underneath the plastic sheets are teeny tiny mukau seedlings, which this nursery can produce 1 200 000 every year. That’s a heck of a lot of trees, and yet, it’s a far cry from what the company aims at. The vision of Better Globe Forestry is to eradicate poverty and corruption in Africa, and this will be accomplished through the mission, which reads: Through “social entrepreneurship” plant as many trees as there are people on the planet and thereby finance a successful implementation of the Vision. To accomplish this the company aim at planting a million trees a day!

This will make a huge difference in many ways, not in the least when it comes to providing job opportunities for people. Kenya has an unemployment -level of somewhere between 10-40% – I have not been able to find any definitive numbers, but it’s definitely a lack of job opportunities. By empowering people (for instance by providing them with a job) they can lift themselves from poverty. The Gapminder Foundation illustrative Dollar Street is a very visual way to see what happens when people do that. What seems to work better than anything else to raise entire families and communities from poverty is to empower women. This is one of the reasons why Better Globe Forestry has a large percentage of women workers.

I’ve just finished reading Melinda Gates’s book The moment of Lift and it’s filled with great examples of just this. In the introductory chapter, she writes: How can we summon a moment of lift for human beings–and especially for women? Because when you lift up women, you lift up humanity. And how can we create a moment of lift in human hearts so that we all want to lift up women? Because sometimes all that’s needed to lift women up if to stop pulling them down.


Advent Calendar for 2019: sharing pictures and stories/reflections from my trip to Kenya in June. I went to visit “my trees” and get a hands-on experience of the social entrepreneurship of the Kenyan forestry company that I buy trees through.

Full disclosure: I am proud to say I am both a customer and an ambassador for the company. If you are curious to find out more, let me know and I’ll gladly get in touch with you! Here’s my sponsored link: https://betterglobe.com/27216 

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Think and Grow Rich (book 8 of 26)

April 22, 2018
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in Tip
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Think and Grow Rich is a book written by Napoleon Hill. It was first published in 1937, with a few more years of The Great Depression having the world in a firm grip. I picked up a copy in India some eight years ago, but again, never got around to reading it. until now – this was one of the books I decided to read for my English reading challenge of the year. The copy I picked up was the original unabridged version, and in a sense that’s a shame. Because it is dated. The way it is formulated, the actual style of the writing is a bit… well, it’s as if Mr Hill believe the reader to be a bit obtuse, so he’s capitalizing the most vital parts, and that in and of itself rubs me the wrong way.

I also do not like how 99% of all of his examples of successful men, are actually men. The women are few and far apart, and basically show up at the very end of the book. Two, or possibly three examples of ladies as successful role models to mimic, the rest of the time when women are mentioned speaks of “our” ability to wrap men around our little fingers. (I trust I don’t have to even begin to explain why this get’s me all riled up?!) But, given the fact that the book was written close to a century ago, I tried to let this slip.

And once I do that, sure, this is a book that has its virtues, for sure. And given the fact that this is actually one of the most successful books of all time, it would be weird if it didn’t right? Read what it says on Goodreads about Hill and this book: “Hill’s most famous work, Think and Grow Rich (1937), is one of the best-selling books of all time (at the time of Hill’s death in 1970, Think and Grow Rich had sold 20 million copies).” 

Here are a few of the passages which spoke to me for one reason or another:

Open-mindedness is essential for belief. Closed minds do not inspire faith, courage, and belief. 

Every man is what he is, because of the DOMINATING THOUGHTS which he permits to occupy his mind. 

we-are-where-we-are-and-what-we-are-because-of-ouKnowledge is only potential power. 

[…] the word ‘educate‘ is derived from the Latin word ‘educo‘, meaning to educe, to draw out, to DEVELOP FROM WITHIN.

Any man is educated who knows how to get knowledge when he needs it, and how to organize that knowledge into definite plans of action. 

The person who stops studying merely because he has finished school is forever hopelessly doomed to mediocrity, no matter what may be his calling. The way of success is the way of continuous pursuit of knowledge.

[…] we are where we are, and what we are, because of our own conduct!

A book worth reading? Hm. Yes. It is. But I hope (and trust!) that there’s a revised edition more recently re-worked, and if I were you, I’d pick up such a copy instead of the original unabridged version.

The book I am blogging about is part of the book-reading challenge I’ve set for myself during 2018, to read and blog about 26 Swedish and 26 English books, one book every week, books that I already own.

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