Books as friends

Can philosophers help resolve the real problems that people have in their lives?

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marjoram_blues
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Re: Books as friends

Post by marjoram_blues » Fri Jan 06, 2017 8:53 pm

duszek wrote:Sometimes we don´t have enough people around us who are good company for us. Not everyone is lucky.

I have discovered that certain writers can write in such a way (no matter what the topic) that you feel good just by reading the friendly words.
One of such writers whom I have discovered recently is Jonathan Maslow and the book is "Sacred Horses". It is about his adventures in Turkmenistan.
He does not beautify anything and yet his words have an up-lifing effect on me.
I will never meet Mr. Maslow, and yet I can enjoy his friendliness any time and feel cosy.
I found the book by chance. It was lying around as a free gift after being removed from a public library.

Has anyone made a similar experience with any writers ?
Thanks for the introduction to Jonathan E. Maslow. I have just finished reading Chapter 1 of 'The Owl Papers'.
Can't wait to read more - I am truly smitten!
How wonderful this chance :)
And your generous sharing...

PS one thing, though, what do you mean by he does not beautify anything?

marjoram_blues
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Re: Books as friends

Post by marjoram_blues » Sat Jan 07, 2017 10:32 am

Dalek Prime wrote:I'm a fan of quiet distraction.
There are times when reading a book is, or appears to be, quiet distraction. But - wow, do some thriller mystery types take you to some deep, dark places - disquieting. Any book which can create rumple has done its job, I think.
The choice is endless. The means to jump out of your box.
And laugh out loud at some pretentious sage.
Or be enchanted by an author whose writing simply hits the spot, at the right time.

marjoram_blues
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Re: Books as friends

Post by marjoram_blues » Sat Jan 07, 2017 11:01 am

marjoram_blues wrote:
uwot wrote:That doesn't sound like good news, marjoram_blues. For what they are worth, you have my best wishes.
Thanks, uwot. It wasn't me but my vigil with Mum. A few months ago. The end was a release and a relief.
But I miss her so.
I think the word 'vigil' is a bit problematic here, if it gives the impression of being prayerful or spiritual when at the bedside of an imminent death. In that scenario, it would be disrespectful to be distracted by a book.

I was there over a period of days and nights. Being vigilant in the sense of watching for any signs of pain/distress and then taking appropriate action. At times, it was simply being there - and taking breaks in the hospice lounge.

So, the book came in handy; as a friend or companion - as a way of seeing life goes on - and to take me out of myself and the situation, for a wee while.

I actually don't like the word 'vigil' and don't know why I used it...
I had previously denied that that was what I was doing - to a minister - probably because of the religious aspect.

marjoram_blues
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Re: Books as friends

Post by marjoram_blues » Sat Jan 07, 2017 11:24 am

duszek wrote:Thank you, marjoram.

Jonathan E. Maslow died of cancer, in 2008, at the age of 59.
But he had an interesting life for sure.
Perhaps his ghost appreciates now that I cherish his memory.

Mr TSBU is right that friendship may not be the right word because an active exchange of thoughts is missing.
Mr Maslow´s words communicate a spirit of peace and friendliness to me.
He lives on in his books if people read them and feel inspired by them.

Could a writer be called a coach ?
So sorry to hear about his death from cancer - at such a young age, with so much to give. But it seems he had a shining life, and his 'spirit' lives on in his work. How many of us can say that ?

Perhaps - the word is 'fellowship' - the quality of a shared feeling ?

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Harbal
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Re: Books as friends

Post by Harbal » Sat Jan 07, 2017 11:50 am

marjoram_blues wrote:
duszek wrote:
Jonathan E. Maslow died of cancer, in 2008,
So sorry to hear about his death from cancer
What would you have preferred him to have died from?

marjoram_blues
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Re: Books as friends

Post by marjoram_blues » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:22 pm

Harbal wrote:
marjoram_blues wrote:
duszek wrote:
Jonathan E. Maslow died of cancer, in 2008,
So sorry to hear about his death from cancer
What would you have preferred him to have died from?
Interesting that this is what you zoomed in on.
I had almost added that cancer is such a bastarding bitch etc., etc. - but refrained.
Right now, I feel anger at how our society is handling, or mishandling, the whole end of life choice issue. Almost tempted to start a thread on it...
But I won't.

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vegetariantaxidermy
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Re: Books as friends

Post by vegetariantaxidermy » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:26 pm

marjoram_blues wrote:
Harbal wrote:
marjoram_blues wrote:
So sorry to hear about his death from cancer
What would you have preferred him to have died from?
Interesting that this is what you zoomed in on.
I had almost added that cancer is such a bastarding bitch etc., etc. - but refrained.
Right now, I feel anger at how our society is handling, or mishandling, the whole end of life choice issue. Almost tempted to start a thread on it...
But I won't.
Apparently people are obliged to suffer because kristians think that suffering is some kind of virtue. Have to keep the fucks happy.

marjoram_blues
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Re: Books as friends

Post by marjoram_blues » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:40 pm

vegetariantaxidermy wrote:
marjoram_blues wrote:
Harbal wrote:
What would you have preferred him to have died from?
Interesting that this is what you zoomed in on.
I had almost added that cancer is such a bastarding bitch etc., etc. - but refrained.
Right now, I feel anger at how our society is handling, or mishandling, the whole end of life choice issue. Almost tempted to start a thread on it...
But I won't.
Apparently people are obliged to suffer because kristians think that suffering is some kind of virtue. Have to keep the fucks happy.
And that's why, right now, I'm not up for a discussion on it. I need time to refresh.
Before all this, I read a novel ' Me before you' - Jojo Moyes. It deals with the issue and is enjoyably emotional !

Dalek Prime
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Re: Books as friends

Post by Dalek Prime » Sat Jan 07, 2017 6:05 pm

marjoram_blues wrote:
Dalek Prime wrote:I'm a fan of quiet distraction.
There are times when reading a book is, or appears to be, quiet distraction. But - wow, do some thriller mystery types take you to some deep, dark places - disquieting. Any book which can create rumple has done its job, I think.
The choice is endless. The means to jump out of your box.
And laugh out loud at some pretentious sage.
Or be enchanted by an author whose writing simply hits the spot, at the right time.
Reading is definitely exciting, yes. It can transport one to amazing places and adventures, for sure.

marjoram_blues
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Re: Books as friends

Post by marjoram_blues » Sat Jan 07, 2017 6:52 pm

Dalek Prime wrote:
marjoram_blues wrote:
Dalek Prime wrote:I'm a fan of quiet distraction.
There are times when reading a book is, or appears to be, quiet distraction. But - wow, do some thriller mystery types take you to some deep, dark places - disquieting. Any book which can create rumple has done its job, I think.
The choice is endless. The means to jump out of your box.
And laugh out loud at some pretentious sage.
Or be enchanted by an author whose writing simply hits the spot, at the right time.
Reading is definitely exciting, yes. It can transport one to amazing places and adventures, for sure.
But there can be more to reading than simple distraction, or escapism, no?
What do you think of 'bibliotherapy' - which I think is about prescription of works of fiction, philosophy, poetry or creative non-fiction particularly tailored to meet individual needs or desires ?

Book-matching for an ideal travel companion...?
Or is it more fun to leave it to chance...

Dalek Prime
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Re: Books as friends

Post by Dalek Prime » Sat Jan 07, 2017 7:42 pm

marjoram_blues wrote:
Dalek Prime wrote:
marjoram_blues wrote:
There are times when reading a book is, or appears to be, quiet distraction. But - wow, do some thriller mystery types take you to some deep, dark places - disquieting. Any book which can create rumple has done its job, I think.
The choice is endless. The means to jump out of your box.
And laugh out loud at some pretentious sage.
Or be enchanted by an author whose writing simply hits the spot, at the right time.
Reading is definitely exciting, yes. It can transport one to amazing places and adventures, for sure.
But there can be more to reading than simple distraction, or escapism, no?
What do you think of 'bibliotherapy' - which I think is about prescription of works of fiction, philosophy, poetry or creative non-fiction particularly tailored to meet individual needs or desires ?

Book-matching for an ideal travel companion...?
Or is it more fun to leave it to chance...
It is nice when you stumble upon a great story or non-fiction work by chance, opening up new venues, but I try to tailor my reading to my interests, or let people with more expertise in a field recommend something they believe might complement my needs or interests. I have a philosophy professor friend doing this for me at the moment, that I don't limit myself.

marjoram_blues
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Re: Books as friends

Post by marjoram_blues » Sat Jan 07, 2017 8:11 pm

Dalek Prime wrote:
marjoram_blues wrote:
Dalek Prime wrote: Reading is definitely exciting, yes. It can transport one to amazing places and adventures, for sure.
But there can be more to reading than simple distraction, or escapism, no?
What do you think of 'bibliotherapy' - which I think is about prescription of works of fiction, philosophy, poetry or creative non-fiction particularly tailored to meet individual needs or desires ?

Book-matching for an ideal travel companion...?
Or is it more fun to leave it to chance...
It is nice when you stumble upon a great story or non-fiction work by chance, opening up new venues, but I try to tailor my reading to my interests, or let people with more expertise in a field recommend something they believe might complement my needs or interests. I have a philosophy professor friend doing this for me at the moment, that I don't limit myself.
Sounds good :)
and you have confidence that this philosophy friend isn't too biased towards own interests...
or does it not matter that, even if you don't limit yourself, there may well be some unseen, or hidden, constraint...
Suppose it's all a learning process, anyway.

duszek
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Re: Books as friends

Post by duszek » Sun Jan 08, 2017 8:28 am

Marjoram

When I said that Maslow did not beautify I meant that he expressed his honest views about bad things too. But in a humorous way.

At the airport Domodedovo (in Moscow ?) he muscled in into the cafeteria to get some food, only to discover some bad items (which I don´t need to repeat) and some good ones.

He went to great pains to learn Russian, he described the experience as a slave camp with lots of drill, drill, drill.
Perhaps it was this terrible experience that led to cancer ? If you suffer a lot during a certain period of time your body and soul cannot thrive.

duszek
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Re: Books as friends

Post by duszek » Sun Jan 08, 2017 8:32 am

A book can make you stop thinking about something that worries you too much and annoys you.

I like to listen to a writer reading his own novel or to an audio book in general, in a lying position, with the legs up for blood circulation and moving my arms and holding dumb-bells. That way the concentration is good and one can improve one´s muscles at the same time.

marjoram_blues
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Re: Books as friends

Post by marjoram_blues » Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:27 pm

duszek wrote:Marjoram

When I said that Maslow did not beautify I meant that he expressed his honest views about bad things too. But in a humorous way.

At the airport Domodedovo (in Moscow ?) he muscled in into the cafeteria to get some food, only to discover some bad items (which I don´t need to repeat) and some good ones.

He went to great pains to learn Russian, he described the experience as a slave camp with lots of drill, drill, drill.
Perhaps it was this terrible experience that led to cancer ? If you suffer a lot during a certain period of time your body and soul cannot thrive.
Thank you, duszek, for the explanation; it makes sense, given what little I have read of him.
I wouldn't like to speculate on the cause of his cancer; there are so many different types and factors involved.
I intend to read more of Maslow...

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