the mysteries of the easter bunny

Easter has never fascinated me as christmas. There are lots of interesting peculiarities about anthroposophical christmas, but the main event really is easter — or the so called mystery of Golgotha or the events of… (or whatever — the air is heavy to breathe with all the highstrung phrases). It’s the pivotal event in earth evolution and for humanity. It’s right smack in the middle of the present cultural epoch or evolutionary cycle, providing a turning point, so to speak. Nevertheless, it never held the same fascination for me as christmas, with its occult christmas tree decorations and advent spirals. However, as it is easter now and the Golgotha mystery is such a big deal in anthroposophy, it seems quite appropriate to say something about it. As it happens, I just read the section on Steiner’s christology in a dictionary on western esotericism.

For Steiner, Jesus Christ was essentially the divine Logos incarnate. Christ is the spirit of the sun who descended to the earth in order to redeem not only mankind but the earth in general. According to Steiner, mankind has fallen prey to the forces of evil, that have made him mortal and have thrown his diverse “bodies” into decadence. In order to revitalize humankind, Christ had to taste death himself and bring the ultimate sacrifice, thus becoming the “inner sun” or spirit of the earth and restoring its sense and purpose. According to Steiner, through the blood of Christ after the Crucifixion the whole earth began to shine. [Hanegraaff (ed), Dictionary of Gnosis and Western Esotericism, p 81.]

There’s a lot on the ‘mystery’ of course (it would make some sense to treat it only as a mystery rather than as something real, for sure… but that’s a personal preference and nothing to do with what’s actually the case). The Rudolf Steiner Archive is full of lectures — and, if you read german, there’s even more. Much of it is, unsurprisingly, about the importance of the event for the evolution of humanity and humans beings. In this context, he also talks a lot about planetary evolution — the incarnations, and so forth. Stuff you will also know, by now, from the reading of Rosicrucian Wisdom! This is sample from a peculiar little lecture you might want to read, at least if you’ve got nothing better to do (it’s not actually an easter lecture, but it fits in this context):

By recognizing the Sun as a Spiritual Being, it was possible to connect a conception worthy of man with the beginning and end of the earth. The conception of Jesus, who was Christ’s abode, renders possible a conception worthy of man in regard to the middle of the earth’s development, and from there will ray out towards beginning and end that which will once more make the whole cosmos appear in a light that gives man his place in the universe. We should therefore envisage a future in which hypotheses concerning the world’s beginning and end will not be constructed on the basis of materialistic, natural-scientific conceptions, but in which the point of issue will be the knowledge of the Mystery of Golgotha. This will also enable us to survey the whole cosmic development. In ancient times, the Christ was felt to be outside in the cosmos, where the Sun was shining. A true knowledge of the Mystery of Golgotha enables us to see in the historical development of the earth the Sun of the earth’s development shining through Christ. The Sun shines outside in the world and also in history — it shines physically outside, and spiritually in history; Sun here, and Sun there.

(When waldorf schools claim to be educating for freedom, what Steiner says about freedom in this lecture is worth keeping in mind, e g: ‘From birth to death, man lives in a real world unknown to him, one which cannot ever give him freedom. It may implant in him instincts which deprive him of freedom; it may call forth inner necessities, but never can it enable him to experience freedom. Freedom can only be experienced within a world of pictures, of semblance.’)

On easter friday (good friday), many years ago, my little brother was born. I didn’t enjoy it then; I’d rather have had a new toy or, even better, a dog or a rabbit. I never saw the point of babies, and I didn’t care one bit for that new, odd creature. It’s a different thing now. I’m so very happy he’s there. If he weren’t, I’d have to cope with our parents getting older and eventually ceasing to exist (I can barely say the word). All on my own, a thought which, quite honestly, makes me freak out. I wouldn’t be up for that, although I guess it’s a dire prospect for anyone. Not that that is the only benefit of siblings, but clearly it’s one of them. It’s not something you think of when you’re seven and a half, though.

To make this about waldorf — since what would be the point if everything here weren’t about waldorf? — he got out lightly. My education had fucked up so badly by the time he had started kindergarten that when I left he left too. There wasn’t anything to stay there for. But that path had been intended for him, of course, as it had been for me; we were meant to stay for all those 15 years. Happily! That was the idea. But reality does not always follow the plan, and with these kinds of educational environments — that include, in a sense, a ‘community’ — you can’t do it half way. You can’t remove one child and leave the other behind (it’s that cultishness, perhaps, that prevents this). As I’ve understood it, he was put on the waiting list for the waldorf school — you had to be on the waiting list for years to be guaranteed a place — on the first day after easter. Tuesday, presumably. It all must have seemed quite bizarre to me — both the arrival of that not so nice little thing and the fact that they wanted to put him in that school –, but of course back then I knew of no other kind of education. All in all, I think he was all right there, during the year (or perhaps it was two) he stayed there. I used to pass the kindergarten yard occasionally, and he seemed happy enough. He’d come running. I was so much older by then. So much older than him.

Oddly, I don’t actually know much about how to celebrate easter. As with midsummer and — what are they called? — traditional swedish cray-fish parties, I don’t know how it’s done in Sweden, so don’t ask me about swedish traditions! We used to have for easter — and still have, in fact, if they’re possible to get hold of — these chocolate eggs from a finnish company called Fazer. They are filled, you see, entirely filled with chocolate, and not a bad kind of chocolate as so many easter eggs. And the chocolate filling is inside a real egg, where the egg white and yoke have been removed. I can’t think of any other easter tradition. Gifts, of course, for children. But no church, and no mystery of golgotha. No tears, but no particular joy either. No mysteries, only the easter bunny. We still cling to the easter bunny. He’s an important character in the canineosophical cosmos, thus a being imbued with higher truth, presumably important for canine evolution. Perhaps there’s a Mystery of the Easter Bunny? What do you think?

Today is good friday, though, so how about some pain and suffering? No, I’m just kidding. How about dealing with some inanities instead. As for this (blog) being all about waldorf, or even all about anthroposophy (although that is far more interesting, which also goes for the connection between anthroposophy and waldorf), I think it’s worth realizing that my life is not. And that when people imagine I care a lot about their personal grudges and their fights — whether these grudges and fights are real or imaginary (I’m particularly fed up with the invented ones) — and that I care so much about them that I’m going to fight their personal issues for them, that I’m going to promote what they do or whatever else they want me to… that’s when they go seriously wrong. I want to write a blog about things that interest me. That’s it. That’s where my commitment to this begins and ends, I have no further obligations — neither to waldorf critics nor to the waldorf movement. Sometimes I’m happy to do things because the topics interest me — for example, I do like stuff that has to do with anthroposophy and waldorf or anthroposophy and medicine (or other similar topics). But I am not going to get caught up in people’s private, personal grudges and ravings against some or other particular Steiner school. Especially not in these circumstances. In particular when I don’t believe people are acting rightly, but not even if I thought they were. I’m not obligated. I’m not involved. I have things to do, things that mean something to me. This is not to say I don’t want to hear people’s ideas and suggestions and thoughts and experiences — I do. I just don’t want to be pursued and attacked for failing to support them or for not wanting to engage with them or for disbelieving them. I no obligations to react in a certain way. Expectations (some of which are clearly dreamed up) don’t confer obligations on me.

There are other things I don’t particularly care about: believe it or not, I don’t lie sleepless at night worrying about the UK free schools reform (or even swedish waldorf free schools, imagine that!). I believe it’s interesting to look at how these Steiner schools and the Steiner movement present themselves and I think it’s interesting to see how they handle that — seemingly much dreaded — anthroposophical connection. But other than this — it’s not a personal concern for me, and will never be. I’m not in it to serve a cause. Neither the situation in the UK nor any other topic that somebody else cares for nor any situation that bothers somebody else are necessarily my responsibilities. Unless I want to do something, it won’t get done by me, so if you think I have obligations, well, you’ve got to think again. As I’ve said numerous times before — I’m not offering counselling, I’m not offering support, I’m not offering help, I’m not going to cry your tears for you or wipe your nose or kiss your feet. I’m not offering an army to battle Steiner education either. (I wouldn’t even want one, were I able to assemble it.) The only thing I do offer is a blog about things I enjoy writing about. So anybody who’s afflicted by delusional expectations should immediately learn how to overcome them — for the benefit of everyone. In short: I’m not in a war, I’m not in somebody else’s actual or invented fight, I don’t write for any purpose other than enjoyment (if and when possible) — and, most importantly, I don’t write to put a stop to waldorf education or anthroposophy or any such cause. Whatever you think. I just am not. If you want to organize that war, please don’t expect anything from me. Please go ahead and crucify yourselves. It is, after all, the right time of year. But don’t try to taint me with your silly martyrdom.

I had my own experiences, my own thoughts, my own desires and also my own purposes for doing what I’ve done and what I still do. I’m not asking anyone of you to make anything of that, in concrete terms — in fact, I wouldn’t want you to. Take it for what it is, read what you want to read or enjoy reading. But understand that just because you are acting in all sorts of relevant and irrelevant ways against your Steiner waldorf schools or anthroposophy, for real or perceived or even imagined personal slights, I’m not going to. Neither on your behalf, nor on my own. I’m pretty content not to have a fight on my hands.

that was yesterday — today it snows again!

So, where was I? I thought about things, you know. About this writing business. My own writing — and, well, the writing of things, in general. And what it does to experience and memory. I wrote long before I had the blog. Most things I write never end up on the blog (one might even wonder if the worst things end up here, but I don’t know if that’s true). I see myself, and my experiences, through what appears to be ever more layers of fiction. It’s good, it’s what happens, it’s transformation and, if you’re going to write, consistency is overrated anyway. I don’t bear many grudges anymore — things have changed, people have changed, I have changed. Writing, the way I’ve done, you’re bound to create and recreate yourself and your past, to the point where nothing can be trusted, not even ‘yourself’, what- or whoever that is. This isn’t said to encourage you to take me less seriously. I am serious, when I’m not playing around. You take every word as seriously as it deserves — I take fiction very seriously myself. I’m aware that some people have problems distinguishing fiction from fantasy, and that some people don’t realize how much of what we tell ourselves about ourselves is a kind of fiction anyway. Or, more to the point, how much of what we think we know about ourselves is reconstruction and reconstructions of reconstructions trying to find who we were and what happened to us. It’s like chasing ghosts. (Or, as mr Dog would perhaps put it, chasing supersensible bunnies. It all ends in deep mystery, like the quest for the elusive easter bunny.)

But things happen over time. Even to who you are. And if you keep writing — mixing autobiography, thoughts, ideas, knowledge and fiction — for decades, that’s going to have an effect. Of course, thinking is enough, no writing is necessary. It’s just that when you write, you are in a position to more consciously notice what happens as there is a kind of record of the process. (People who don’t write might have to hope for — or perhaps dread — access to the Akashic records!) The consequence is not a production of lies, mind you. It’s very different from that. But how do you imagine I can retell the ‘same’ stories over and over again without recreating them in my mind, over and over again, every time with small differences? How do you imagine someone can ask themselves who they were and who they are without subtly changing the perception of who they were and who they are? How do you suppose any of this can be happening without inconsistencies occurring, or even without actual transformation taking place? How much is ever left of the actual event or the original state of mind? How accurately do we report on ourselves, on our experiences or anything else that involves us, for example our relationships to other people?

The bottom line is, I’ve come to think, that the way I see my present and past self — and the role of my experiences — is much more dependent on who I conceive myself to be today. In this moment. That, to put it plainly, is a different person than a few years ago, or even (subtly so) yesterday. There’s a line to follow from then to now, but on the way here, you’ll find inconsistencies. You’ll find that the line is broken and mended and, like a rope, tied together to fix it and make it hold, should somebody pull on it. But it’s quite fragile still. It’s more incoherent than this post, and that’s saying a lot.

So, happy easter. You pick and fight your own fights and bear your own grudges, don’t count on me to assist you. You nail yourself to your own homemade cross and relish your own crucifixion; it will make you feel all the more important, I’m sure. I won’t even look.

I’m busy sacrificing myself and my memories to the hungry pitbulls of the present.

(A real happy easter to most people — I will look at you and listen to you! Because you’re interesting.)

racist cake (politics, art, anthroposophy)

Can I buy a book? Read it? Enjoy it? Can I like an object? Can I eat what I like? Can I fancy an idea? A thought? An image? That is: can I do this without betraying political interests — my own or those of other people?

I’m not so worried about betraying my own; it is more that I feel others may have an expectation. Predominantly an expectation on my taking political standpoints even when there are none to take in any meaningful way. (As far as I’m concerned. That may be my stupidity or ignorance, for which I’m certainly responsible. Be that as it may.) Recently, in Sweden, I’ve seen people call for boycotts of anthroposophical products (food) because of the current measles outbreak in Järna, caused by the low vaccine coverage in the anthroposophical community there. That, too, is a call to take stand — and often, it seems, people assume what mine is. What isn’t actually the case seems to be self-evidently the case, apparently. I haven’t taken a stand. This is perhaps not about political principles as much as it is about immediate anger at the situation, the ignorance, the recklessness, the contempt for others who live in the same society. But still — it is a call to take stands. To show concrete support, in everyday choices, for the ‘right’ side. (But I feel I’ve done other things; I’ve done a great deal to inform about why anthroposophists don’t vaccinate, for example. I may be justifying myself now, but there are different ways to act… and I don’t know which is the most effective in the end or even if I want to spend much time pondering that rather than write, write, and write! I simply can’t do everything people want me to do. It has to do with time, energy — and sanity.) And then there’s the more important issue of the racist strands in anthroposophy.

There’s that idea that everything you do, in life or in art, is political — it’s all about taking some kind of political stand, even going so far as to show support or solidarity with one cause or another, and that nothing can be allowed to exist for its own, unpolitical sake. There’s the idea that what you do should be in support of something bigger than itself and its own beauty. This necessity sometimes seems to me a needless illusion to fall prey to. Also, it is exactly what plagues anthroposophical expressions — the assumption that virtually everything has to serve higher purposes, albeit for them these are spiritual not political. Almost never, it appears, is something there for its own sake; or for beauty, enjoyment, pleasure. Individuality is erased for this higher purpose, for meaning defined by others or by loftier aims derived from spiritual decrees. Insisting that all life and all art is in the service of political debate makes us fall into the same bottomless pit, where things are usually unbearably black and white (and this without the nuances and the light of a black and white photo, mind you), the same way as when everything is seen in the perspective of spiritual progress.

Either you show solidarity with the ‘good cause’ — or you don’t. Supposedly. And you can’t avoid making the choice, because if you avoid making it, you end up making it anyway. In the eyes of others, I guess, every move (or non-move) can be construed as political action. (It’s tricky navigating in this world. Without hurting sensibilities.) But just as little as I write this blog to help or inform — no matter how readers interpret it; damn is this the thousandth time I repeat this? — do I write it to show political solidarity. That would be as tedious as cleaning toilets to me, and I would be writing nothing at all, thus not making myself very useful anyway (as if the point was usefulness; it’s not — oh, damn, again!). The risk is I’d be showing political solidarity with the wrong causes. (I’m not against state-funded free schools, just said by the way…)

Sure, one can be interested in a phenomenon and nonetheless reject it; it’s perfectly possible. It’s pretty easy with crime and murder. It’s less easy with Rudolf Steiner. It’s no longer so simple. Maybe I’ve been hanging around with old Rudi for too long a time. Because that’s what I do; I don’t do politics much, I hang around with ghosts. I guess that’s my weakness: my fondness for mad, dead men. I like their company. They’re extremely funny and loveable, and have lost all interest in the politics of earthly life. They’re distant enough to fall in love with. And still they’re close enough; closer than anybody.

Not that I would characterize my blog as art; to make art is a grand aspiration, possibly too grand for me. But the political shit fucks up art all too often and too much. It claims a right to take precedence over everything else. It wants to eat your life. It wants to consume your artistic freedom and parasitize your organism for its aims. And it always claims the moral upper hand — because these political goals are always ‘self-evidently’ good. How can you not…? You will have to show solidarity, or be an enemy of ‘the good’. Whatever it is. But, then, remember: anthroposophists also think their values and aims are self-evidently good, and justified spiritually. The only obstacle to success is that the world does not yet understand. Not making comparisons in any other regard. I agree that Steiner’s ideas on race are idiotic; I think he’s spouting crap. What else is there to say? (I read a brilliant quote by Nabokov the other day: ‘A work of art has no importance whatever to society. It is only important to the individual, and only the individual reader is important to me. I don’t give a damn for the group, the community, the masses, and so forth.’)

It might be worth adding that I came upon these topics — waldorf, Steiner and anthroposophy — for completely different reasons: racism, no matter how important an aspect of Steiner’s work it is to others, was not my reason. I was driven to do this by my own experiences, in which racism was not a component. It had to do with being a child in a waldorf school. That’s what I had to find out about; it’s what I had to deal with. Not the racism some adults may have experienced. I guess it may be the naïvety of a small white blue-eyed child, but I never saw racism. I still live in Europe. I’m still a white european in a northern european country. Racism was not what made me want to make sense of my experiences. It played no role whatsoever. My focus was, in this regard, a wholly different one. But, yes, I know what’s in Steiner; I know about the racial hierarchies, about the idiotic statements he made. That was not what drove me to find things out though. It’s not what’s driving me now. Steiner’s racist ideas don’t dictate my choices today. When I despised everything anthroposophical it was not for political reasons related to racism it was for purely personal reasons — call them childish if you like. But they were not about political antipathy or solidarity. And I don’t have these feelings anymore. Thank Dog I don’t. They would suffocate me.

Does knowing about it (it being Steiner’s less acceptable ideas) put an obligation — of any kind — on anyone to reject everything coming from the same source (ie, Steiner and anthroposophy)? Does not doing so amount to inadvertently taking a political position?  Continue reading “racist cake (politics, art, anthroposophy)”

sleep

Falling asleep, the astral body and the I leave the physical body behind (Steiner says!). The ether body stays with the physical body. In dying — the brother of sleep, says Steiner — the ether body, too, abandons the physical body. (Diana summarized this particular lesson from Steiner’s Rosicrucian Wisdom last sunday; it’s lecture iii, with astral oceans and comet tails for your pleasure!) What about artificially induced sleep, I’ve been wondering. What happens to the astral body and the I when a person is under anaesthesia? I’m not thinking about the boringly rational answers now; I want the anthroposophical answer. According to which ‘normal’ sleep happens like this:

When the human being sinks into sleep, his astral body and ego, together with what has been worked upon in the astral body by the ego, withdraw from the physical and etheric bodies. When you observe the sleeping human being clairvoyantly, physical body and etheric body lie there in the bed. These two members remain connected whereas the astral body emerges together with the higher members; wit h clairvoyance we can see how, when sleep begins, the astral body, bathed in a kind of light, draws out of the other two bodies. To describe this condition with greater exactitude we must say that the astral body of modern man appears as if it consisted in many streams and sparkles of light and the whole appears like two intertwining spirals, as if there were two 6-figures, one of which vanishes into the physical body, while the other extends far out into the cosmos like the trail of a comet. Both these trails of the astral body very soon become invisible in their further extensions, so that the phenomenon then has an ovoid shape. When the human being wakes, the trail no longer extends into the cosmos and everything draws again into the etheric and physical bodies. [Source.]

So, then, what happens during anaesthesia? It’s supposedly quick — the transition, that is: you fall asleep fast, wake up fast. It’s not like ordinary sleep. You can die, although that’s rare of course. I’m a bit obsessed with the issue of falling asleep right now — in particular with induced sleep. I’m going to go through the eye operation soon, to fix the squinting. It combines three of my big fears: hospitals, falling asleep and nausea.

Sleep (and not sleeping) is a recurring theme in my life; for the first time ever, I’ve been able to sleep (without medication) most nights for the last half year or so. Though not so well during some of the last few nights. Partly, I think, it’s a fear of losing control and of lost control. I used to feel I had control over nothing, but not falling asleep was something I could control — paradoxically, even when I wanted to fall asleep, because I was dead tired, I think I did fear losing control, and thus could not let myself there. (Clearly, that’s a too complicated explanation. Anyway, I spent lots of time sleepless.)

I figure anthroposophy has an answer — anaesthesia is, after all, used in anthroposophical medicine too? Are there any differences, compared to mainstream medical care? I mean, I assume it’s used for practical and humane reasons — similar reasons to elsewhere — but what intrigues me is anaesthesia in connection to the special anthroposophical beliefs about sleep and what happens during sleep.

(A couple of quotes on sleep, posted two years ago, from the first class lessons.)

PS. You’ll wonder why the quoted passage speaks of a ‘trail’ when I spoke of a ‘tail’. In the print version of the book, it does indeed say ‘tail’.

today’s photos and assorted… stuff (including faceless toys and dolls and what they might be about)

New year’s celebrations are not really my thing. First and foremost, I have no choice but to abstain from them. Mr Dog is afraid of fireworks. We pull down the curtains and try to pretend it’s not really happening at all. Nothing Bad and Scary Is Happening. It’s the acting performance of the year. He’s had fun, met people, walked, eaten, and — just a few minutes ago — gone out for an evening pee (which made him a bit uneasy, as there are already fireworks). Hopefully he will now sleep. I have to be ordinary, normal and boring. That is, I type random things on the computer. Nothing is happening. It’s worked fine during the past few new years’ eves.

But, this aside, I’m not personally fond of it either. I’m not sure why. Every new year’s, since the year 2000, I keep thinking of something my beloved grandmother said to me once. ‘When it’s year 2000’, she said, ‘there’ll be huge celebrations, the grandest new year’s celebrations ever. But by then we won’t be here anymore. We’ll be gone.’ (This was the content, of course I can’t remember the words as they actually fell.) She meant herself and grandfather. That’s one hell of a thing to say. Of course, she was right. They were not there. And all I could think of, on that night, was her words.

As for new year’s resolutions, I don’t do them. I hope to live less rigidly — as far as my state of mind goes, but also in practical terms — and more inspiredly. I hope my eye examination in january shows that I can have an operation and that it is successful. I hope I will be writing. More. And reading more.

Art with a face. (Waldemarsudde in the last remains of sunlight on this new year’s afternoon.)

From one thing to another, a thought — or a question — came to my mind when I read the newspaper today. (The newspaper was a few days old… but I read it today. Well…) There was an article about stuffed animals, that is, toy animals. Supposedly, stuffed animals — perhaps the same applies to dolls — help children develop empathy. I wondered, upon reading this, how it would affect this learning process (or perhaps I should say developmental process… it’s about learning in a loose sense) to have faceless animals and dolls, the way that some waldorf folks prefer them faceless. Since — I know this has been researched and discussed a lot, and… just google, I won’t bother now — seeing faces, facial expressions and the interpretations thereof are such important features of the empathic faculty, would not faceless toys… be a hinderance rather than an asset, when it comes to empathy? I mean, it’s said — by Steiner admirers and hardly nobody else (as far as I know) — that faceless toys are beneficial for the child’s development of imagination. But are they really? And how does this relate to empathy and the development of empathy? Mind you, I know that stuffed animals have static faces, and you have to use your imagination to see shifts and emotions in their facial expressions, even when they have faces! But — would it not have any impact if the animal had no face at all? If it’s just blank. There are no eyes, no nose, no mouth. This facelessness so completely deindividualizes the (stuffed, plush) being.

Is it just imagination — and the role of imagination in the child’s development — we’re talking about here? What does this facelessness mean? What’s it about? What does it imply? What about faceless people? It can’t just be about imagination; there must be another explanation. Because why else do the dolls still have legs and arms and hair? They could be amorphous lumps of matter, just as well. (Imagine the imagination you’d have to develop to play with such items!) Is it because… legs, arms, hair have little to do with individuality? This in stark contrast to mouths and eyes which convey content… which convey thought and which are the outer representations of a mind that works and thinks. Mouths and eyes release intellectuality in the world (perhaps the faceless beings can type, and thus commicate the contents of their minds?). And the metaphor of the eye as the mirror of the soul and all that.

What about faceless children — children who are just blank spaces for the teachers to fill with content? What about being a spiritless nothing — a deindividualized person? You know, writing this, I realize what (possibly) makes me spooked out by faceless toys is that I felt like a faceless being myself. The thing is, though: there was something inside — somebody who could experience all this, this deprivation of individuality… or the expectation that you should relinquish individuality and personality. In favour of some greater good, your future spiritual enlightenment, the social context (being a daft ‘nothing’ in a flock of equally daft sheep) or whatever else.

(Actually, I can’t personally remember any faceless toys. The waldorf dolls I remember had rudimentary facial characteristics: tiny eyes, tiny mouths. But I’ve seen the faceless ones as an adult. They creep me out just slightly. Here’s an example: faceless gnome and doll cross breed. This design of small dolls is very popular in waldorf. But this one is apparently a gnome, too. What a bargain! — Can we please discuss what this facelessness is about? How we interpret it? Whether it’s bad or good? Is there something to my thoughts in the passages above?)

Now for some more photos.  Continue reading “today’s photos and assorted… stuff (including faceless toys and dolls and what they might be about)”

my eyes (and photos from the woodland cemetery)

This morning, I had another appointment with the orthoptist. Now I know why (though I already suspected it) I had such difficulty reading, despite the glasses — since my last visit, the eyes had deteriorated again (and quite a lot). It’s been really quick, I noticed I had problems already a few weeks after I got the new glasses in June. The upside is that the situation now — that is, the degree of squinting — makes surgery an option. The eyes have to stabilize first though, so that we know there’s no further deterioration. I didn’t get a new prescription for glasses this time, only a lens in the form of adhesive plastic film attached to the old glasses (only on one eye, though). It’s very odd, since it’s slightly striped and makes vision on that eye blurry. The quicker this is over, the better.

To visit the orthoptist, I have to go to a suburb south of Stockholm. After the appointment, I took the opportunity to visit the nearby Woodland Cemetery (web page in English!), listed as a world heritage by UNESCO.

It was a very grey morning; rainy, damp and cold.

Continue reading “my eyes (and photos from the woodland cemetery)”

fiction

Ran into someone from school yesterday. It wasn’t someone I used to hang out with much, and not someone I’ve been in contact with since (not that there are many), and other than running in to each other very occasionally, we probably don’t know anything about each other. Expecting a second child, she and her (I guess) husband had settled in a house in a suburb. I continue to be amazed at how life runs away with people. It’s entirely surprising to me, this willingness to adapt to the contingencies of life — this ability to do what’s expected, to be able to mould yourself to fit the average transactions of human existance. To recast yourself to the demands put upon you by society and by family life.

All while I exist in some parallel universe of perpetual teenage angst and confusion. So, I guess, the question is — how do people do it? How come they even want it? How do they cope with order, organization, responsibility? On second thought… perhaps it’s not for me to know.

I don’t get it. I don’t. I feel like I’m the only one left on planet Abnormal while everyone else got on the train to the land of Ordinary. I guess they were never on the same planet as me anyway, and that it’s simply becoming all too apparent that they weren’t. I’m still stuck asking myself, and an unresponsive world, what this growing up is going to mean on a personal level. All that happens is that the divide between me and normal adult life is getting increasingly vast, until I don’t know what it is I’m watching on the other side — real humans or some exotic life-form?

Everybody grows up to push prams. Even boys grow up to push prams these days.

I see more and more the allure of fiction. Maybe fiction is the only place left for someone like me — left free from invasions of normalcy, left free from the lifestyles of those humanoid aliens that you encounter in this very real city. Today: heavy rains and thunder.

sätt att se (järna 2011)

Valvkänsla, foajén i Kulturhuset, Ytterjärna; med oförlåtande, brutalt dagsljus utanför. Hade egentligen behövt den sena eftermiddagens eller tidiga kvällens ljus, dess skuggspel. Eller annars morgonens, beroende på. (Färgversion nedan.)

Jag tror inte jag skulle kunna se Järna, om det inte vore för att jag såg genom en lins. Det är som om kameran skänkte mig distans, men samtidigt möjligheten att vara närvarande, även om det är ett slags indirekt närvaro. Att se genom ögonen vore helt enkelt inte nog. Besynnerligt nog är jag beredd — inte bara beredd, det sker närmast automatiskt — att acceptera det jag ser genom kameralinsen, fastän jag kanske inte skulle gjort det på samma sätt om jag betraktat det med ögat enbart. Jag menar på ett slags mentalt plan; jag slipper de associationer jag är rädd för. Det är som intrycken tog en helt annan väg in i hjärnan. Det jag ser tar form, skapar sig en plats därinne, som annars inte skulle nås. Mer direkt än så kan jag egentligen inte känna Järna. För egentligen är de där inredningsdetaljerna kusliga för mig, och jag vill inte ha för mycket tid och för mycket fokus över till att tänka på varför det är så.

Jag vet inte om det är så att kameran fyller samma funktion som jag ibland får för mig att engelskan gör — i det ena fallet, ett språk att gömma sig bakom; i det andra, ett seende att gömma sig bakom. I fråga om kameran, att den ger mig ett syfte, en upptagenhet vid något. Fullt så enkelt är det kanske inte, gissar jag. Men genom att ta bilder uppehåller jag mig vid något som förtränger känslan att inte höra hemma i något som ändå är oerhört och närmast obehagligt bekant, jag behöver inte tänka för många dåliga tankar, behöver inte finna mig i risken för overksamhet och avsaknad av mål. Jag gör något. Kanske är det lite som att röka en cigarett eller något liknande. Något att fokusera på. Och den reser en behaglig vägg mellan mig och andra. Overksamhet är utsatthet.

Ändå finns den där: känslan av att inkräkta. Det gäller särskilt i Järna. Jag önskade att jag kunde ta andra inomhusbilder, trots att jag annars sällan fotograferar inomhus. Vidvinkel. Att genomtänkt komponera dem, även om det annars är sällsynt att jag fotograferar genomtänkt. Jag fascineras av dessa hus, av dessa byggnaders egenheter; av de aldrig raka vinklarna, av ljusinsläppen, av cementen. (Färgerna är däremot rätt svåra, och konstigt nog inte alltid ens harmoniska.)

Det slog mig just, att jag, som mest bara gillade ord och inte bilder, ägnar dagarna åt att se på bilder och ta egna bilder. Det är högst märkligt. Fast det är kanske inte hela sanningen, och därför mindre märkligt än det låter. Jag var mycket fascinerad av tanken på att fotografera redan som barn. Men då var jag för liten att förstå att det hette fotografera; jag kallade det något annat, trots att man sa åt mig att det var fel. Jag hade ingen film i kameran (som faktiskt var riktig), men jag kamerade (med betoning på första e) allt vad jag kunde. Några andra konstnärliga eller hantverksmässiga verksamheter var jag inte intresserad av; jag började till och med avsky allt sådant. Det finns konstformer som är tabu i waldorfskolan, i alla fall för de yngre barnen (yngre än högstadiet); fotografi är en sådan. Eller snarare: fotografier existerar inte. Bara vattenfärger, kritor och färgpennor existerar, och en oerhörd tristess. Continue reading “sätt att se (järna 2011)”

night rises

‘I’ve always felt that night doesn’t fall; night rises.’ — That’s from an interview with James Turrell (whose work is exhibited in Järna right now) in the American magazine aptly named Interview. He talks about art, light, flying and the Quakers. Worth reading. (‘I should have been a Pharaoh. That would have helped.’) The photo above shows night falling — or rising! — over the Stockholm archipelago and our cliffs and fox-gloves. End of June, some time past 11 pm.

*

I also want to say I’m aware that I have unanswered emails; I have neglected the blog, too, lately. Things are better, but not exactly splendid. Today I wanted to prioritize an update with further comments on a recent debate about anthroposophical measles advice (it should have been written days ago). Though I spent most of the day reading a wonderful book, and wrote the update later. And yet again postponed everything else.

adventures in old neighbourhoods (or: some gnomes of my childhood)

In the vicinity of the school, there was this shop. In it, you could stock up not only on biodynamic food products but on the usual anthroposophic and waldorf paraphernalia as well. Crystals, bees-wax, Weleda soap and Stockmar crayons and water colours. Books, though probably not a very extensive selection. But they certainly carried anything that would be sought after by the enthusiastic waldorf parent. They still do. The shop windows are decorated with waldorf dolls, but since my childhood there has been some small change, although the aesthetic as well as ideological profile remains the same: the flag outside the door advertises ice-cream.

We went there frequently, because my mother used to do much of her shopping there. (She continued with this habit until recently, actually; but less frequently than during our waldorf years.) I’m old enough to remember a time when you could not find organic products in ordinary supermarkets. It started slowly, with… potatoes, I think. Instead, you had to visit special stores, like this one, or order your food from obscure companies (and without the option to decide which products you wanted). Usually, mother shopped on the way home after picking me up at kindergarten and school, and later after picking my brother up, but sometimes, on Saturdays, we went in the old Volvo, though overall we rarely used the car. It’s a nightmare getting shopping done in the suburbs. There’s walking, taking the train (we were two train stations away), walking again, carrying bags of groceries, walking, train, walking… But it was a matter of principle, and the principle was adhered to. Most of the time. So we dragged and carried. It was not much fun. When I was a bit older, perhaps approaching nine, I took the train home on my own after school, and saw the insides of this shop more rarely. But it still happened, occasionally.

These 1940s or 1950s buildings surround the school. When in first grade, I had a horrible anthropsophical nanny who used to work in the waldorf kindergarten on and off and who lived just behind that shop, in  a similar building; she lived very anthroposophically. If there was a TV, I’m sure it was concealed under a pastel-coloured silk cloth. (I have always assumed there wasn’t one, though. She was a waldorf orthodox.) One day, I refused to go there anymore, as with all such non-mandatory activities that had any connection with the school.

Opposite this shop, on the other side of the street (close to where I was standing last autumn when I took the picture), there’s a pizzeria. I’m not sure children in the lower grades, that is, lower than 7th grade, were allowed to leave the school premises. Since we were starving, we did this anyway. Or I did and some others. I’m sure the righteous didn’t. Whoever they were. In the pizzeria, you could purchase bread. The bread could be eaten. You could avoid going hungry. I could never eat porridge without feeling nauseous. The school served porridge once a week. The pizzeria is still there — or was there, on this gloomy day, in November last year — and I bet they’re still selling pizza to hungry waldorf children who can’t stomach the food served in the school’s canteen!

In the background, on the other side of the pizza place building and its neighbours, the school hovers menacingly on its hill. I don’t know what it is with anthroposophical architecture, but I always have the impression it will jump down and try to devour the other houses. And perhaps consume a number of unsuspecting humans, too. (Now, wait… that’s not entirely untrue!)

It looked more monumental when I was a child. But it is true that this school building dominates the area; it looks down upon the ordinary world from its elevated position, and I have a feeling all the people and all the mundane things of the world are being judged — and found inferior. (This shows it from the train window; bad photo though.) It’s a steep walk from the station to the school. Grades one to six reside at the very top of the hill in smaller buildings — behind the large building whose front is seen on the photo. Its main entrance is on the school yard — also at the hilltop. It’s situated much higher than what seems to be the ground level from this perspective.

The human neighbours in these buildings close to the school were less than happy about it. They often complained. Children were informally prohibited from walking through the residential area on their way to and from the underground station (the underground, curiously, is over ground in these parts of Stockholm — by the way). Children didn’t care, of course. And there was nothing stopping anybody — the spaces between the buildings didn’t belong to the residents, they were city property much like any streets and walking paths. It’s not difficult to understand why they protested so much, though. The behaviour of these waldorf children was atrocious. Yelling, screaming, fighting, and so on. Occasionally damaging property, I guess.

This was the nearest way from the station to the school, however, thus the attraction of it. There was another way, but it was significantly longer. On the other hand, this shorter path had its drawbacks. I was always a bit uneasy about going through a small forest — or a sad excuse of a forest, more likely, it was a collection of unhappy trees and some neglected shrubbery — which started behind the shop and went almost all the way to the station in these days (since then, new residential blocks have eaten away at the already tiny and sorry forest area). The area around the station, and the area behind it, with its path to the school, was a place occasionally occupied by local drunks, drug addicts and hobos, when they didn’t prefer the benches outside the liquor shop, which they often did. They used to dump refuse, like disused syringes, behind the train station.

The school took some social responsibility in telling us not to pick up syringes to play with, no matter how tempting they may appear to be. Or maybe it was my mother who said that. Maybe both. I remember they also informed us that it is a bad idea to hook up with sinister people who were out to molest children, though they probably didn’t put it quite like that; there were those kinds of folks around too. Or, at least, there was the occasional ugly old man who liked to expose his genitals to children and women and who had found excellent hunting grounds near the school. The path leading through the small wooded area, and then via the residential block and on to the school might have been pretty perfectly suited to such purposes.

The other way you could choose to take had its own oddities, of course. It was the road you used if you arrived in a car; it also had proper pavements. On one side of the road there was a huge rock — the size of a house — or maybe it was one large rock and many smaller ones. In any case, it was one of many ice-age remains in the area and it had a cavity inside. I’m sure the waldorf teachers would have preferred us to believe this rock with its cavity was inhabited by gnomes. It might have been, once upon a time, but if so, the gnomes had encountered pretty ruthless competition for their rightful space. I don’t know much about the habits of 21st century thieves, but back then, some thieves used a certain rock, indeed, this particular rock, as a storage place for their goods. This was pretty different from the gnome stories told by waldorf teachers in the kindergarten (practically next door to the rock!) — yet not entirely different. The thieves also liked metals. But physically, they looked suspiciously like humans. Like gnomes, they probably cared little about setting a good example for hundreds of children. Unlike gnomes, they didn’t fear waldorf teachers. To the frustration of many waldorf teachers, neither gnomes nor thieves know eurythmy. (There are exceptions, of course. Some thieves do know eurythmy.)

So, anyway, you could say we had real thieves instead of fairytale gnomes. If this wrecked the imagination of anyone, it was probably the teachers’ and not the children’s imaginations. The gnomes either didn’t exist or had emigrated long ago — and everybody knew it. Except the teachers who needed to pretend the children believed in order to preserve their own illusions. Reality was always much closer, somehow.

ofrihetens korridorer

— denna fruktansvärda, kvävande miljö med dess krav på individens utplånande såsom individ, med dess ouppnåeliga krav på konformitet, med dess förbannade förtryck av allt som avviker från den waldorfpedagogiska normen och det antroposofiskt sett riktiga, med dess sanktionerade pennalism och dess godkända slaktande av all självmedvetenhet och självkänsla. Och propagandan, om främjande av individens känslo- vilje- och tankenatur och dennes frihet, till trots: den raka motsatsen till just dessa värden är det som gäller, nämligen ett kollektivets tyranniserande av den enskilda känslan, viljan och tanken. Den enda läxa som finns att lära handlar om lydnad och underdånighet, den handlar om att sluta vara sig själv och därmed finna godkännande i omgivningen. Klarar man det inte, är odugligheten bevisad. Men oavsett man vill eller inte, tvingas man till förslavning under ideal man inte delar och inte kan leva upp till. Vägen till frälsning går genom förståelsen av värdet i att underkasta sig vått-i-vått-målningen, eurytmin och flöjtspelandet; man måste, för att han en plats i världen, uppskatta värdet av dessa företeelser även om man inte omedelbart förstår företeelserna som sådana. De antroposofiska idealens tyranni. Det är de som gäller, över allt annat, på bekostnad av allt annat, på bekostnad av individens frihet. Friheten att tänka gäller bara den, som tänker innanför ramarna. Och man måste tåla majoritetens våld.

Jag spyr på alla de där lögnaktiga paradisskildringarna.

Waldorfläroplanen deras borde inte få kallas En väg till frihet.

Den borde heta En väg till underkastelse. Det vore med sanningen bättre överensstämmande.

Ok. Från det ena till det andra. Jag har slutligen tittat på den illamåendeframkallande filmen. Handhållen och ryckig filmning av dessa vidriga korridorer. På något sätt gör det dem ännu värre. Den finns här på youtube. Kristofferskolan är mitt helvete, och jag antar att den som är bedräglig nog kan framställa också helvetet som ett paradis. Det söker de förvisso göra i den här filmen; men den som vet baksidan, kan de inte narra. (Det vet naturligtvis även de, och sådana som jag är förstås inte deras adressater.)

Musikläraren från helvetet säger att man mår bra av musikundervisningen — inte fan mår man bra av hennes musikundervisning, det är då en sak som är säker. Och där står hon och domderar i samma obehagsframkallande musiksal som på den tiden. Som om tiden stått stilla. Hon gillar, läser jag: ‘Ärlighet, medkänsla och ansvar’. Jag vet inte om jag har ord för att beskriva vad jag tycker om det. Det mest optimistiska jag kan säga är: självbedrägeri.

‘Känn dig själv’ är inget ideal som tillämpas i verkligheten av människorna som befolkar den här miljön. (Och så säger antroposofer att icke-antroposofer omöjligen kan förstå antroposofin. Det slår mig — inte för första gången — att vi kanske på somliga sätt förstår Steiner bättre än de själva förmår…)

En annan lärare talar om att tillvarata och möta upp hela människan och om chanserna att utveckla alla sidor av sig själv — så i helvete heller.

Ytterligare en talar om detta som en ‘bred och gedigen utbildning’ — hur man kan inrymma så mycket bullshit i en så kort filmsnutt är i och för sig imponerande, och tyder på breda och gedigna kunskaper i lögnaktighet.

Äckelkänslor.

Det är som att möta en återvändsgränd fylld av död och förruttnelse. Och det är, bland andra kadaver, mitt barndomsjag som ligger där, stadd i sådant förfall. Det finns fortfarande ingen nåd, ingen respit, ingen räddning. Det är dock, i praktisk mening, över. Jag måste vara 33 år gammal och bortse från det förmultnande förflutna.

nauseum

I can’t watch this with sound on; I don’t want to hear the voice of that music teacher ever again in my life. But just watching the corridors and staircases, I… something grips me, and I feel sick. Not because of the revolting PR, which I guess is present in the film clip (as I said, I turned off the sound). But because I honestly feel sick to my stomach. I notice some former students have become teachers; I suppose they must have love their school. I suppose they don’t feel anxious and like they’re going to vomit. I do. When I watch this, I can’t understand I’ve managed to go there twice since my teenage years. I must have unconsciously decided to become numb to the environment. Happening to click on this link off-guard, however, it makes me very uncomfortable. As I said, sick. And I’m not just saying this. I feel sick. It’s more than 20 years on, and I feel sick. I can only watch a few seconds at a time. It’s a bit strange it happens now, maybe because I didn’t expect it, I wasn’t prepared. Maybe it was the camera movement in these corridors, stairs and rooms; I don’t know. It’s not like it’s the first time I’ve seen footage from there, I’ve even been back there a couple of times as an adult, and it’s been alright. I’ll try again tomorrow.

I’ll tell you, because I don’t know if I have, I think I have, so forgive me if I tell you again. Once, when I was 13 or 14, my mum wanted me to go with her to a fair at the waldorf school. This was only a year or two after I’d left it. I thought nothing of it, I went with her, they often had lots of second-hand books, and I liked buying second-hand books. I mean, I was away from there, I was safe elsewhere and I knew it was just a visit and I didn’t expect it to mean anything in particular to me. My reason alone didn’t alert me to the emotional danger. Not that I reasoned about it, I didn’t understand I should have. I didn’t expect anything. I had had to go there for nine years, so what could a short visit do to me? A lot, it turned out. I totally freaked out. I understand now that I must have had a panic attack of sorts, but I didn’t understand it then. I thought I was going to break, physically too, to pieces. And that my brain was going to burst my skull. I couldn’t think. I had an adrenalin rush that helped put me in a flight mode, and I just fled. I don’t mean I walked away like a civilized person who only wants to leave a place. I fled for my life, like a chased animal, like a hare from a wolf. That’s how it felt. I ran for my life. I probably ran in the way of traffic and accidentally into people who were going uphill (you know what I mean if you watch the movie clip). I have a vague memory of trying to run at top speed among too many people, too many obstacles. I felt I was facing Death, and I have no idea what all these people were doing there.

Interestingly, something similar was the theme of many of my nightmares during those years. I used to dream I was shot, or butchered alive, or was bleeding from huge gashes, that I was among people but nobody noticed the blood, nobody noticed me dying in front of them. Not even if I had bullets gone through me or my organs were protruding from my torn apart chest. It was life as usual.

(How ironic! Not until I pressed preview on the blog post before posting did I notice that the front ‘cover’ (you don’t say that with film clips, do you?) includes a human skeleton. Appropriate somehow.)

(Edit: re the post title, see Tom’s comment.)

people like me don’t exist

It is an increasingly frustrating situation. When you were a teenager, there were still those who imagined a future as bohemians. As a 33 year old, you find the entire world in praise of the family. You find that everybody wants to be in their family cocoons, only mixing with people who are in similar cocoons. And you are supposed — it is assumed of you! — to want to create this kind of cocoon for yourself. There’s no place at all in this society for people who don’t want families. People like me are excused as defiant, immature individuals as 17 year olds. When we’re 33, we can no longer be allowed to exist. Everything in this society is geared for people who want to build families and live in families. You’re supposed to make money to sustain a family. It’s supposed to be the Meaning of Life. There’s no way you can go on with life as a social being without this desire for conventional family life. You’re a fucking pervert. Not wanting monogamy or taking care of used diapers makes you a low-life. You must be sick. You must be like this because you’re demented. You must be like this because you’re totally inferior; morally, psychologically, and so forth. You’re unfit for life. At least ‘healthy’ life.

I suppose it’s an undesired consequence of my occasionally writing about education — I should stop because apparently people cannot fathom I don’t give a shit about child-care or family life — but I get these comments from Mothers (who have found Meaning of Life in pushing out these divine Babies) who somehow seem to think they’re an authority and I should listen to them because they have procreated, and didn’t have just one child but… like 13. Or I don’t know. I’m sorry, but that kind of thing makes me want to puke. I have no respect for anyone’s opinions just because they had functional ovaries and a provider of sperm. I’m sorry, but that’s the truth. No, I’m not sorry. I’m resentful. I’ve had enough — not just on this blog — of missionaries spreading the gospel of eternal bliss of Babies. I’ve had enough to such a degree that just seeing a mother push a trolley makes me want to puke. Not because of the mother herself, but because human life is disgusting. I don’t understand it. It makes me sick over the fact that there’s no way to understand why people in general make these decisions; they’re incomprehensible to me. Why is everybody like that?

Thus, the blog aside, this is a constant terror in real life. If you don’t have a family, if you don’t want to get married, if you’re not looking for a partner to make children with, you’re constantly judged. It never ever stops. It is the assumption from when you are a kid that in the future you’ll imitate your parents and ‘get a family’. It’s the only way to get Meaning of Life. It’s like there cannot be any other idea of what makes life worthwhile. Only one. This hegemony creates nothing but misery. All our lives — from when we’re children ourselves — people who don’t want children are forced to have other people’s ideas about blissful procreation shoved down our throats. It never stops. I’m sure that when I’m 65, people will tell me I hate children because I wasn’t able to have any. The sentiment is the same as it always was, but the excuses for this kind of put downs will change. Of course, now that I’m over 30, I’m the only one who hasn’t given in. I’m the only one to maintain I want nothing to do with children. Perhaps I am really alone in it, or perhaps there are others who just don’t want to admit it. I don’t know. It’s possible I am this spectacular aberration of a human being.

Sure, some people don’t have children, for various reasons. But they’re still supposed to celebrate family life as the ultimate, meaningful pursuit. They’re supposed to admit that their life aren’t as full as those lives lived by parents. People like me are sick for not accepting this big ‘truth’; thus people who don’t have children generally pay lip-service to it, at the very least. I cannot respect it because to me it seems like a really big lie. I’m saying ‘people like me’ but I know of nobody else. It’s really just me. The rest say ‘oh, I didn’t have children, but it still is the superior way to live!’

And then people say, ‘but you cannot hate children, you were once a child yourself!’ — but it’s not something I can help, can I? I had to be a child, whether I wanted to or not (I didn’t, I hated being a child, and I hated other children). And they say, ‘but you’ll be lonely!’ — yes, I suppose I will, it is inevitable, I will be lonely. Everybody else is in families, and they want to be around families, not around adults who hate their children.  I understand that. But it kind of makes me an outcast. It’s not anybody’s fault, but it’s the inevitable consequence. If my brother has a child, I won’t be a part of the (extended) family anymore; I’m incapable of coping with it. And everybody will resent me for it, because they will think that me being as old as I am, I ought to have reached a minimal level of maturity. A maturity which means accepting other people’s family life and children as a collective blessing. I cannot. Because I despise babies as much as I did when I was a child myself. I want nothing to do with the phenomenon. Ever. And people say, ‘but everybody loves their own children!’ — no, that’s not true. Moreover, that in itself — even if it were true — would never justify enduring the terrors of living in a family.

But I have nowhere to exist with these feelings. Nobody thinks they are for real, because a human being cannot possibly feel what I feel. It is (presumably) human nature to feel protective towards children and family life. I’m not natural, I’m a perversion. I sometimes think people have an easier time understanding paedophiles than understanding me.

I have this feeling I will never quite learn to live in this world. I wish it were different. It won’t be, though, because you cannot change other people and their desires. And I cannot change me.

to järna with love (x)

I remember a discussion over at the waldorf critics list years ago; I probably couldn’t locate it again even if I tried, unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately…). It was about how we (or I), when displaying anthroposophical environments or contexts, risk conveying an impression of beauty only — of superficial beauty, of the nice stuff, selling anthroposophy once again (like anthroposophists tend to do) for what it is not rather than for what it is. The superficial side of it conceals the supposedly darker interior, the more obscure corners, of anthroposophy (whatever those are, but let’s forget this question for a moment). We may be aware of those, but fail to convey them. At that moment, at least. It is, after all, more pleasant to post nice pictures. I’m considering these aspects again, as I’ve got loads of more photos from Järna, and I stopped posting them for one reason or another (I think I was temporarily angrier, temporarily more resentful). And I post my photos from the biodynamic gardens at Rosendal all the time, because that’s where I often take walks and because I genuinely like the place.

It’s a difficult dilemma: does one end up promoting the very thing one is also criticizing? I’m leaning towards a preference for ignoring such considerations all together. I don’t think they matter to me at all. I still love all those photos, whatever they mean to others. To those who cannot abide anything anthroposophical, I’ll be an apologist. I’ll be siding with the ‘enemy’ if that’s what it takes (for my peace of mind, it may be easier if that’s what some people think). To anthroposophists, on the other hand, there’s no doubt: I don’t understand anthroposophy, no matter how much (or little) I know. So I’m perpetually lost in between. It may be the best place to be. It’s better to be confused than to have settled one’s mind, I like to believe.

These were pictures taken by a staunch materialist. I don’t understand a thing. Remember that. Continue reading “to järna with love (x)”

seeing

Seeing is all that matters. I don’t know what I would do if I didn’t see. The one thing that makes me panic is the thought of losing my sight. Hearing I don’t care much about, but seeing. I know that I’m whining now — I really do know it — but I have to wear an eye-patch on one eye for two days. Just two days. A few hours into it, I’m getting rather desperate. I can use my other eye, but I feel like a prisoner in my own brain. I am, obviously, a prisoner of my own brain no matter what. It doesn’t become so apparent, though, when you can look out at the world unrestrained and without strain. My seeing eye is tired already. This will bore me to death before it’s over. What do you do when you cannot read words or view pictures? I don’t know.

a week ago

I cannot stay in, I cannot go out. I look like a moron (a real pirate eye-patch would have been more appealing than one which makes you look like you have a hole in your head) and feel like an idiot. Whining about it is still an option, I suppose. It’s perhaps the best entertainment I can get today.