Tag Archives: Books

Between the Covers

 

“You find certain writers who when they write, it makes your own brain voice like a tuning fork, and you just resonate with them … And I sometimes have a hard time understanding how people who don’t have that in their lives make it through the day.”
— David Foster Wallace

 

I rarely get bored. Not that I don’t find certain chores tedious, its that when I am doing them I can send my mind and self travelling elsewhere. Also whenever I find myself with long periods with nothing to do I pick up a book. Reading has been one of my favourite activities since I was six and there are writers and characters with whom I’ve had deeper relationships with than the majority of people I’ve met. Plus as long as I have a book to pick up, I know I will not be bored.
That isn’t to say I believe that books are the be-all and end-all of existence. Some things need to be experienced in order to make them real. Tho it is always books I will return to in my downtime.
Blessings, G

 

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Forest SpellForest Spell by G A Rosenberg

 

Webbed NestWebbed Nest by G A Rosenberg

 

Holding the Attention — A List

 

“Tell me what you pay attention to and I will tell you who you are.”
— Jose Ortega y Gasset

 

My attention tends to shift amidst many different areas and I never know which facet of my being will come into play. Here are some of the things that tend to capture it these days:

 

      • Whispered words and Loud conversations
      • How the light falls on the leaves – Light in general and darkness and the interplay between the two
      • People’s hearts – People’s eyes, spirits and stories as well.
      • My Family
      • Art- Both creating my own and enjoying that of others. Favourites: Dali, Escher. Alex Grey, Austin Osman Spare, Caravaggio, Vincent Van Gogh, Bosch, and lots of others including that of many friends on Tumbler and Face Book.
      • Bad Jokes and Good Wordplay- I love playing with language and making it dance.
      • Books- Favourite writers are Charles deLint, Spider Robinson, Aleister Crowley, Austin Osman Spare, Michael W. Ford, Robert Anton Wilson, Ken Wilber,Neil Gaiman and an almost endless list of others.
      • Archetypes-Myths, Legends, Songs and of course Comics.
      • Music– Of all kinds. My tastes tend to change and evolve. Some favourites currently and perennially: ELP, Queen, Behemoth, Metallica, Neil Young, Dana Owens (Queen Latifah), Watain, Bob Marley, Animals as Leaders, Walk Off the Earth, Acherontas, Postmodern Jukebox, Emme Ya and again I could keep going endlessly
      • People’s conceptions of the universe. I prefer to hear people’s unique takes on spirit as opposed to prepackaged ideas that they gained either at their parent’s knee or their latest conversion. I want to hear the kernel of truth that I believe each of us carries within.These days my studies have taken me more towards the goetia and left-hand path topics tho I am always interested in hearing and discovering truths as each person knows them.

I am always interested in learning more about the people who read this blog. Feel free to share what captures and holds your attention these days
Blessings, G

 

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Questions Asked and AnsweredQuestions Asked and Answered by G A Rosenberg

 

Galactic Building BlocksBuilding Blocks Towards A Cosmic Fractal by G A Rosenberg

Travelling in Books

 

“In books I have traveled, not only to other worlds, but into my own.”
— Anna Quindlen

 

All of my life I have been an avid reader. I’d be the kid always walking around with the book in his hand. In class, I’d have a novel hidden under my school books and trusted to my memory to fill in the blanks in the lessons. So much that other people did and said puzzled me that I looked to the characters in books and how the writers handled their interactions to clarify the relationships in my own life and it helped. I read a lot of non-fiction and from those I gain knowledge but it is from fiction that I tend to get the most insight. From Spider Robinson’s Callahan stories I learned about the importance of empathy and sharing both joy and pain. From Frank Herbert’s Dune novels I learned about the many layers that communication happens on and how to handle it when overwhelmed by emotions. The litany against fear (http://dune.wikia.com/wiki/Litany_Against_Fear) works with all emotions. From Charles DeLint’s stories I learned much about how to overcome past pain and the sheer wonder and magick that exists in our everyday life. From these and so many others I’ve learned so much that I’ve been able to apply and share with other people and I am grateful for the light that they have shone in my world.
Blessings, G

 

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TaurusTaurus by G A Rosenberg

 

Fractal Seeds In An Abstract GardenFractal Seeds in an Abstract Garden by G A Rosenberg

 

Linking Real

“So books are real to me, too; they link me not just with other minds but with the vision of other minds, what those minds understand and see. I see their worlds as well as I see my own.”
― Philip K. Dick

 

Feeling my heart open
feeling my wounds bleed
My blood spilling out
of view and precious need
to reveal what’s inside
That spark of truth
that separates bifurcates
my age from my youth
I lied to myself
so easily when young
seeing myself in the lyrics I sung
or the books that i read
heroic tales
grandiose successes
dramatic fails
the passage of time
did honesty bring
those old half truths
no longer would fling
so now I can bleed
confessions and truth
I no longer need
the protections of youth
— GAR

 

Wow, where did that come from…Partly the wish to be more open and then realizing that its easier to be honest with time… There is both less reason and less desire to hide… Not that it was ever necessary. Hiding sent me on some amazing adventures as did eventually facing myself…
Blessings, G

 

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Sacrifice and RenewalSacrifice and Renewal by G A Rosenberg

 

Mandala with Flame threadsMandala with Flame Threads by G A Rosenberg

Bookshelf Revelations

“To know a man’s library is, in some measure, to know a man’s mind.”
― Geraldine Brooks

 

Can we be known by the books that we choose to read, the books we choose to keep or perhaps a bit of both? Most people who have read my blog before know that my tastes in most things is a bit eclectic (I think that’s the nice word for it) and my bookshelf tends to be even more so…Since the advent of ebooks (which has cut down on bookshelf space considerably. What? You say that there is nothing like the feel of a book in your hands? That’s true but with two or more avid readers in the house, book space tends to run into living space way too easily.) With the intent of sharing a bit of myself then, a selection from what’s currently on my e-reader.

 

  1. Over My Head by Charles deLint – I love Charles deLint’s writing. His characters are three-dimensional and they understand pain and joy, love and sorrow, art and music. Recently he started a series for young adults called the Wildings of which Over My Head is the second volume. It has many of the same themes that other popular teen fiction has these days but in typical deLint fashion the tropes are just a bit deeper and more thoughtful
  2. Lady Slings the Booze by Spider Robinson – One of Spider’s best and funniest. Lady Sally runs a place of healthy repute where the courtesans (both male and female) are known as artist’s. Spider’s characters and his humour and his understanding of the human heart are addictive. Plus this is the book where he brings in Nikolai Tesla as a regular character.
  3. Hyperreason by Mike Hockney. A unique and insightful viewpoint on reality
  4. Boomeritis by Ken Wilber. When I first heard that Ken Wilber had written a novel, I was fascinated. I have listened to his interviews and lectures and read a few of his books and wondered how his style would carry over. What we get are a few main characters listening and reacting to lectures, yet its Ken Wilbers ideas on integral thinking which I find so vital to the current period we are living in now. This book goes a long way towards explaining Spiral Dynamics in a coherent conversational fashion. I highly recommend this one.
  5. The Enneagram and Kaballah (Reading Your Soul) – I was looking for insight into the idea of the Enneagram. I have just begun skimming through this book.
  6. The Whole Elephant Revealed by Marja de Vries. This book is extremely insightful
  7. Cold Days by Jim Butcher. I love urban fantasy and Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files novels are my favourite of these. A bit like Phillip Marlowe meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer .
  8. The Wandering Who? by Gilad Atzmon. Atzmon is fairly controversial but he asks some very important political questions.
  9. Daemons of Pleasure by Austin Osman Spare. Spare is a new discovery. I find his art beautiful and inspiring and his books on magick to be wonderfully poetic and cryptic.
  10. Outside the Circles of Time by Kenneth Grant. Fascinating views on Kaballism and Magick.

Ten books each of very different nature. I have a lot more but these in particular I have either read, read from or researched in the past week. Ten filters on which I look out on the universe. Ten windows through which people can see different facets of me. What books have you read lately?
Blessings, G

 

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Date NightDate Night by G A Rosenberg

 

Opal gatewayOpal Gateway by G A Rosenberg

Loyal Books

 

“There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
― Ernest Hemingway

 

Today I went to one of my favourite old bookstores. It’s Eclipse books in Bellingham, Washington. Two full floors of bookshelves from floor to ceiling filled with books. Then there are the books that don’t fit on the shelves so they are stacked neatly on the floor, all over the floor of the store. It reminds me a bit of most of the old apartments I had as a young adult.

I’ve always loved reading. At a time in my life when I was less than socially adept, books comprised most of the friendships I had. There are still fictional characters I have late night conversations with, their viewpoints coming in surprisingly handy.
One of the coolest things about Eclipse books is that I find books there that I don’t seem to find in any other used book stores anywhere. Books I haven’t seen in years. They and several more common ones comprise, well if they were music, I would call it a soundtrack to my life so let’s call it a backdrop.

There were the first three books that along with a class I took, gave me my start at reading the tarot when I was 18: Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom by Rachel Pollack, Tarot a handbook for the Apprentice by Eileen Connolly and The Book of Thoth by Alister Crowley. There were also several other tarot books I’ve read over the years since. There were the Carlos Castaneda books which recounted his apprenticeship with the Nagual Sorcerer Don Juan that was the jumping off points for my studies about the same time into Theosophy,the Kaballa, witchcraft, Ceremonial Magick and quite a few other areas.

Over in Fiction, there was On the Road by Jack Kerouac, a book that captured my heart and my imagination even earlier and which no doubt led to some later cross-country hitchhiking trips I was to undertake, The World According to Garp and the Hotel New Hampshire by John Irving which made me feel with their outlandish so true to life characters that my life wasn’t quite so strange after all or if it was I was not alone. Still I Persist in Wondering by Edgar Pangborn, one of the finest short story collections I have ever read and one of the most heart stretching and heart wrenching. Lots of other Science Fiction that I also loved, Asimov, Ellison, Spider Robinson, Roger Zelazney, Ursula Le Guin, Robert Heinlein filled the walls looking down on me as if to say, “Where have you been? It’s great to see you back, would you like so spend some time?”

Walking back up the stairs, I found a few old self-help books buried in my memory and displayed, among them Ira Progoff’s In a Journal Workshop, an amazing book for organizing one’s inner life through writing and journalling.
Sometimes the best thing about seeing old friends is the realization of how much you’ve grown since the last time you saw each other. What’s even more fun is realizing there is still more things to discover with them beyond the sharing of memories.
Blessings, G

 

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MarkedMarked by G A Rosenberg

 

MaelstromMaelstrom by G A Rosenberg

Quote of the Day – July 3 2012

“I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.”
― Robert A. Heinlein

 

I love Robert Heinlein. In a way he along with a few other writers raised me to think for myself through a stormy adolescence. I learned it was ok to be myself no matter who i was and it was ok to love always. In his books, he also introduced me to both the idea of sentient computers and libertarian ideals, which I still lean towards many years later.

 

A few more Heinlein quotes just because :

 

““Always listen to experts. They’ll tell you what can’t be done, and why. Then do it.”

 

“Secrecy is the keystone to all tyranny. Not force, but secrecy and censorship. When any government or church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, “This you may not read, this you must not know,” the end result is tyranny and oppression, no matter how holy the motives. Mighty little force is needed to control a man who has been hoodwinked in this fashion; contrariwise, no amount of force can control a free man, whose mind is free. No, not the rack nor the atomic bomb, not anything. You can’t conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him.”

 

“Being right too soon is socially unacceptable.”

 

Recommended books by Robert Heinlein:

  • Stranger in a Strange Land

  • Time Enough For Love

  • Moon is a Harsh Mistress

  • Number of the Beast

    Blessings, G

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    Ankh Appearing by G A Rosenberg

    Hall of Being by G A Rosenberg


Quote of the Day – April 6 2012

“Consciousness is the place of worship. Consciousness is the sacred text. Consciousness is the way. Consciousness is the place of sacrifice. Consciousness is the fire. Consciousness is the place of ritual union. Consciousness is the place of samadhi. Consciousness is the Awakening. Consciousness is the dwelling place of the gods. Consciousness is time. Consciousness is space. Consciousness is the jar, the vessel out of which flows the divine.”
— Daniel Odier, Tantric Quest

Recently I have started reading Tantric Quest by Daniel Odier, an account of one man’s study of Tantra with a female yogi in the Himalayans. It is a fantastic recounting of an amazing story that I recommend highly. I may have a few more quotes from it before I am done. I always find it instructive to read of the paths of others and the relationship between a spiritual teacher and a student has always been fascinating to me.

 


Three more days to vote in this months contest. Let me know your favourite picture in the 2012 art gallery and you may win it.
Blessings,

 

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Observing the Shadows of Love by G A Rosenberg

Books Recently Read-The Story

The Story

penned & illustrated by Sanyasuk Andekshkwe

To order copies, see some awesome pictures,

& hear some great music:

http://www.songofsilvercrow.com/

The Author’s blog:

http://www.lightingtheseventhfire.blogspot.com/

Visit Tribe of the Seventh Fire


COVERDESIGNAAAforsite

I have started writing this review about five times now. Each time I stop, look into space, wander around in my head and then start writing. One of the reasons for this would be that finding a way to describe this book without sounding like one of the proverbial blind men describing an elephant would be a difficult task. I found The Story to be equal parts “Da Vinci Code” type thriller, dream quest, autobiographical narrative and travelogue. I might have left a few parts out.

The main but not exclusive viewpoint character of the book is Silver Crow aka Charles Ambrose Tyson aka Charlie, a half first nations -half Scandinavian/celtic intuitive reader/sage. Charlie is asked by a client to help locate his brother who has disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Thus begins an adventure that will lead the two from Charlie’s home in Wisconsin through many diverse places including a good deal of the Middle East, the Vatican, Eastern Europe and other diverse places. While this is happening in their waking lives, there is a second narrative, a dream quest that is shared by both  of a young native mystic and his mentor, an equally compelling story. Each chapter starts with Charlie discussing part of his past. It enhances the story rather than detracts from it. Both the main plot and the dream quest find their resolutions and everything ties together neatly in the end but that matters little for as one character sings “The destination does not matter, for it is the journey that brings the joy.”

Oh yeah, one other thing. In the book you’ll find quite a lot about “A Course in Miracles”, the writer Sanyasuk Andekshkwe (Silver Crow) has dedicated the book to The Foundaion for A Course in Miracles and the students and teachers of the same. He quotes from it quite a bit and Charlie centres himself most days by reading and meditating on the Course. According to Wikipedia, “A Course in Miracles (also referred to as ACIM or the Course) written by Dr. Helen Schucman with the help of Dr. William Thetford is a self-study book that presents a purely non-dualistic metaphysical thought system yet provides practical application in its approach to spirituality." The quotes and ideas from ACIM resonated with this reader and will no doubt for many others.

So Did I like the book? Definitely, tho there are large parts I might want to read another time or two and reflect on and absorb. The plot moves along nicely and the intrigue is suitably intriguing.  The best quest stories for me have had the ability to bring the reader along and give him or her the feeling that they too were on the quest. On that level this book succeeds also. Silver Crow bends if not breaks a few writing conventions in terms of viewpoint among other things but pulls it off without pulling one too far out of the story. One of the main things I ask for in a narrative these days would be that the characters in them be if not likeable, intriguing enough to hang out with. On that level this book definitely succeeds. About my only complaint would be that the illustrations within the book (many of which are amazing, others which are merely beautiful) are in black and white. Check out the sites linked to above to see many of them in colour.  Definitely recommended.