Lincoln in the Bardot. By George Sanders

I don’t think a fictional book could be more relevant. Sanders explores humanity; life and death as only an artist could, illuminating and exploring a way to discover compassion and love within amidst all the suffering that humans perpetuate. I am not surprised at the lower approval ratings as compared to other great books. Not every one can see the relevance that he illuminates in his creation. And that is the point of his writing it seems; to touch something deeper within. It certainly is not meant to be grasped literally but more to initiate a capacity to see in metaphors and to allow for what is unexplored within to be touched.

IMAGINAL LOVE The Meanings of Imagination in Henry Corbin and James Hillman TOM CHEETHAM

A stunning book. This is one of my all time favourite books, one that I am sure I will reread numerous times. It is an astounding creative exploration and extension of the writings and life views of Henry Corbin and James Hillman, including brief synopsis of poets Robert Duncan, Wallace Stevens and others. He explores the literal process by which human kind has wandered into and the misguided abstract world that does not reflect concrete reality. He explores how energy of the archetype manifests in us and can be wrongly interpreted and discourages attachment to abstract nouns and literal understanding, encouraging a life view and living through “being” and a practice of reflecting in verbs and adverbs. He speaks of events rather than objects. He writes in a way that is inquisitive, that he has discovered something life changing and that he intuitively relates to in Henry Corbin and James Hillman. A genuine desire to find in humans what is authentic is obvious and in that, he has come to see the wonderful aspects of being human that we all have access to. He encourages another non literal perception of our very creative, expansive and compassionate human nature that easily becomes trapped in the narrowing of our human perceptions. He does not illustrate any of this as an idealistic pursuit or success or as something to be achieved but more out of an unraveling and letting go and a returning to what we inherently are.

Less. by. Andrew Sean Greer

I was quite excited about reading this Pulitzer Prize winner but never felt that it met my expectations in fact I was quite surprised that it won this award. I felt that the main character was uninteresting, unsympathetic and unrelatable and unliveable; that the paltry humor was only mildly amusing (not “hysterical” as one endorsement said), the ending was predictable and anticlimactic; and the book was not compelling.
It seemed to be quite focused on superficial themes and insights and involved beautiful looking people and self indulgent ways. Maybe the point was to illuminate the characters superficial orientation. In the end he seem to lose most of what he was indulgently attached to. Maybe there was a point in there somewhere and perhaps it does mirror a more collective indulgence that looms subtly.

Fear. Robert Woodward

I appreciated Woodwards perspective. He doesn’t present Trump as mentally handicapped but more as a real estate focused business man with related priorities largely unsuited for the complexities of being President. His lack of knowledge of history and international and world affairs is disturbing and his defensive posturing and lack of diplomatic skills is disheartening. From the authors perspective he creates an impression that Trump seems to have great difficulty accepting responsibility for much or to admit to and learning from mistakes.

Etsy Hilessium: An Interupted Life: Letters From Westerbork

This was a profound read. Being drawn into Etty’s journal for her final two years of life on this earth results in an unexpectedly intimate encounter with a gifted and exuberant young lady. As you read her entries, you get a sense of how she, and the rest of the Jewish population, were slowly boxed in to a corner from which there was simply no escape. But Etty is a light in the encroaching darkness. The book is full of reflection, contemplation and insight on life and suffering.

All The World An Icon, Henry Corbin by Tom Cheetham

Speech is not of the tongue, but of the heart. The tongue is merely the instrument with which one speaks. He who is dumb is dumb in his heart, not in his tongue … As you speak, so is your heart. –Paracelsus

I competed this wonderful read “All The World is an Icon,”about Henry Corbin by “Tom Cheetham.”He writes about the the tendency towards separation of philosophy and revelation that began around the time of the Enlightenment and that it set the stage for a very common tendency these days in terms of how we use language. The norm is to rationalize or analyze our experience often involving a focus and language that is disconnected from the direct experience and more about conceptual and cognitive ways isof perception, learned and conditioned in us. In general there seems to be reduced value in that direct experience or deeper revelation. In this process we create a perception of reality that is very dependent on these perceptions and that is quite separated from the experience.