Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Quotes: Learning from people who are different

Without stealing or unfairly/inexpertly appropriating ideas from each other, we can learn from each other. Two reflections on this:

“The Jew can teach the Indian a lot about how to survive as a people and as a culture while being uprooted from one’s homeland, and against the odds of genocide and forceful proselytizing campaigns perpetrated by dominant religions and cultures. The Indian can teach the Jew a lot about what the Jew has lost at the expense of centuries of survival consciousness and uprootedness from connection to the land, information that is far more fresh in the ways of the Indians than it is in the ways of contemporary Jews.”
Gershon Winkler. Magic of the Ordinary: Recovering the Shamanic in Judaism. Berkeley, Calif.: North Atlantic Books, 2003. p. xx.

"Sufi mystics were renowned for their poetic testimonies to a paradigm of self-annihilation (fana) followed by a return to the glorious ‘subsistence’ (baqa) of everyday life. And similar notions, I believe, are to be found in Hindu teachings of the mystical heart-cave (quha) and Buddhist teachings on sacred emptiness (sunyata) and nothingness (nirvana)."
Richard Kearney. Anatheism: Returning to God After God. New York: Columbia University Press, 2010.

On how we can internalize the perspective of a parent (or anyone close to us), as we imagine they would express their perspective:

"What’s always funny, with me and Mom, is how the conversation can continue even when we’re not in the same room—how whenever I feel especially under pressure, I almost always start to hear my own internal version of her arguing with what I think might be her internal version of me, as though I’m rehearsing our next argument in my head, playing through things I’d never have the guts to say to her in person. Except . . . maybe it’s less “guts” than simple forbearance, a wistful wish to seem more reasonable than I often think I’m capable of being, plus the insight to know exactly how crazy most of the shit I long to spew at her would sound, if blurted out loud: how bitter, how scary. How essentially unnatural."
Gemma Files. Experimental Film. Toronto, Canada: ChiZine, 2015. P. 191.

A shared reality affects how we interpret our personal experiences:

"...two recognitions of human life that sound paradoxical but are actually complementary. First, people’s experiences are intensely personal; claims to the uniqueness of experience are true and deserve to be honored. Second, people’s ability to have experiences depends on shared cultural resources that provide words, meanings, and the boundaries that segment the flow of time into episodes. Experiences are very much our own, but we don’t make up these experiences by ourselves.”
Arthur W. Frank. The Wounded Storyteller: Body, Illness, and Ethics. (Originally published 1995.) Second edition. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 2013. Preface, 2013.

No comments:

Post a Comment

In case you missed it

Have you seen inside the book 'To Climates Unknown'?

The alternate history novel To Climates Unknown by Arturo Serrano was released on November 25, the 400th anniversary of the mythical First ...