Simply 6 Minutes- 9-13-22- Requiem for the Artful

Today’s prompt is:

https://www.thebrokebackpacker.com/mysterious-places-in-india/

I’d been walking for 3 days without food or fresh water.
Suddenly, there it was!
An ancient cathedral in the middle of this barren landscape.
Was it a mirage due to my exhaustion and near collapse?

Even as I approach, the craftsmanship is breathtaking! All the wooden parts of the structure have long since rotted away yet the builders’ intention of enduring beauty is crystal clear.
No modern-day contractors would even attempt such a project and it is quite doubtful that they could imagine any artful plan anyway. Beauty and divinity no longer matter in 2022, and our humanity shows graying fraying edges directly for that reason.

Sweat pours down my face burning my eyes and I startle awake. Outside of my parked car in the glare of the midday sun, is a Walmart.
My catnap inspired dream of wandering in the heat undernourished-nearly dying-was less gut wrenching than this reality of such banal, purely functional, architecture.

157-words

https://christinebialczak.com/2022/09/13/simply-6-minutes-welcome-to-the-challenge-09-13-2022/




The Psychology of Totalitarianism: A Book Review

I chose to experience this book in audio form and I’m glad I did. As someone who tries to grasp every morsel of a book, I may have become bogged down in it otherwise.
Unless you’ve had an excellent liberal arts education, the frequent world historical references may cause you to be Googling and/or refreshing your knowledge at the expense of the deep and well-described essence of the text. Within every reference is a clear explanation of the time period so you don’t have to recall all your own facts.
I’m blown away how (somewhat scarily) this book describes the intrinsic human tendency to drift toward totalitarianism and draws an undisputable correlation to our experiences before, during, and since, the Covid-19 pandemic. It’s been a perfect storm for our self-destructive behavior.
The book does not point fingers or make judgements but simply explains Mass Formation Psychosis.
In fact, I felt relieved that there isn’t likely organized malicious wrongdoing on a large scale, but instead, this phenomenon is arising from widespread fear and uncertainty. It’s dangerous and destructive just the same. But there’s actually a hopeful thread that makes our future seem less grim… yet still uncertain.
More than explaining just a psychological phenomenon, the book offers many reference-based cases and gets to the center of defining our humanity and human limitations in general.
[spoiler alert] Poets, artists, and Nature lovers just may be closer to the ‘truth’ of our existence than the dogmatically logic-based scientists.
I’m going to re-experience this fascinating book soon because all the enlightening and affirming information could not possibly be absorbed-to my liking- in one dose. You’ll definitely feel more educated once you read it.
If you’re curious, logical, anxious, or find yourself just shaking your head every day, this book is for you!

Here’s a short clip of the author explaining a sliver of his findings:


BTW-the audio version is not read by the author so if you find his Belgian accent distracting, it’s more clearly understandable.

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=mass+formation+psychosis&&view=detail&mid=4A9D029B0483AC21D4724A9D029B0483AC21D472&&FORM=VRDGAR&ru=%2Fvideos%2Fsearch%3Fq%3Dmass%2520formation%2520psychosis%26%26FORM%3DVDVVXX

Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge #162- Guardian of Hope

from Anita Creations at DeviantArt.com.

Malia shut down all her ‘accounts’ and returned to a place where innocence had once been her entire reality. It was going to be her Walden experience.
Her family hadn’t bothered to sell their “little piece of heaven”, which had remained raw in its remoteness and untended state, so no one objected to her pilgrimage.
It was a shock to her adult urban mentally when she discovered how much effort ‘living simply’ was. Time to contemplate life was limited by ‘living’.
She’d hope to escape the ugliness she’d observed in her 30 years and found that she couldn’t ‘wash’ it from her subconsciousness. “You can run but you cannot hide.” was a recurring notion that depressed her.
On a gently lit calm morning, Malia wandered along a path she’d played on as a child. The rock where she and her siblings once played “King of the hill” beckoned her to sit.

It was there that Malia realized those memories and innocent beginnings were the sturdy foundation that her life had been built upon. No matter how many times she had been knocked down, that ‘rock’ remained. Moss and debris could be swiped aside anytime she wished.
In that moment, she’d found the treasure she was seeking. It was the rediscovery of her innocent happy childhood. That alone, was the secret to a lifetime of hope. Hopeful people are strongly armed for any, and all, life assaults.
Malia packed and returned to the city, days later.
Her mission?
To advocate for children… with the focus on protecting their innocence.
Saving humanity from itself had found a new warrior who had discovered the essence of what needed to be done.

Defining Sanity and Humanity

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I’ve been away from my blog for some time. Knowing it exists, and that I would return, was always a comforting thought. I am pages from completing a fascinating, enlightening, true story and could wait, no longer, to share it.
I am grappling with the term “forever changed” by this book. Instead, I think it is more accurate, in my own case, to say “finally aware” or “forever defined”.
This is a firsthand story of a brain scientist’s stroke. There is a wealth of science about symptoms and perceptions, from the victim’s view. It is an essential part of the story and, really, not hard to learn and appreciate but the overall message and “insight” into the human psyche will “blow you away”!
We are a single being which operates, through our world, by using two separate, yet connected, brain hemispheres. The story exposes the purpose and function of those hemispheres in enlightening detail. The author’s conclusions about the necessity for both to function in unison in order to offer a life “rich” in a common conscientiousness are extraordinary, possibly, life changing.
As I read this book, I was thankful for my years with children for my primarily hopeful perspective about living “in the moment”. Jill Bolte Taylor hits the “nail on the head”, in my opinion, about how much of our own happiness is a matter of how we CHOSE to perceive the world. Embracing how ordinary events make us “feel” (emotionally and physiologically) just may be the biggest tool in the counteracting of everyday depression and sadness.
The author does not disregard the fact that our mental health is subject to chemical reactions beyond our control. The awareness that we CAN control much of it, though, (beyond brain damage and illness) offers a primer in a more fulfilling, happy, existence.
Incidentally, the carefree, forgiving, nature of man’s best friend seems to further explain why our Left Brains (containing speech and ego) can be our worst enemy if left to control too much of our time. On the other hand, who wants children, or dogs, making critical decisions?
As with everything we learn about life, balance is the best medicine.
I’ve barely scratched the surface of the wisdom between the covers of this book!

  • How to recognize a stroke.
  • How to treat stroke victims.
  • The recuperative power of sleep.
  • How our brains interpret the world.
  • The importance of patience and kindness.

I give this book 11 stars out of 10.

For our souls…

My husband and I had many differences. One centered on our music preferences.

As an ex-naval man, he’d had a few unfortunate instances where black friends felt the need to abandon friendship (his and theirs), in favor of, their racial affiliations. He was hurt by this, and therefore, felt discrimination of a different kind. He talked of having really wonderful “buddies” who acted as if he were an “enemy” when grouped with “their kind”. You know, I don’t think he ever had a prejudiced inclination until this occurred.

Well, my affinity for Motown, didn’t make him happy. My goodness, R&B is awesome and sensual. I’d never considered it a racial statement but dang good music.

He aged and mellowed, a bit, before I put my foot down. I loved R&B and his unfortunate experiences, had nothing to do with whether I could continue to love it.

This post is for anyone, black or white, who has felt the “heat” and ugliness of racism. Grow-up! Rise above the hurt and embrace our humanity. We can only adjust our own attitudes, but that’s a great start.

The Confederate Flag was not all about anti-black sentiment and Motown is, truly, all about soul…. Not black soul or white soul. The human soul.