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Spis, bed, elsk : en kvindes søgen efter det hele i Italien, Indien og Indonesien (2006)

af Elizabeth Gilbert

Andre forfattere: Se andre forfattere sektionen.

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
21,985857177 (3.53)613
Forfatteren rejser efter sin skilsmisse ud i verden: Italien, Indien og Indonesien. Hun genfinder sig selv i den italienske mad, den indiske meditation og den nye kærlighed i Indonesien
  1. 116
    Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously af Julie Powell (heidialice)
  2. 61
    Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage af Elizabeth Gilbert (cafepithecus)
  3. 30
    Wild : en fortælling om at fare vild og finde sig selv igen af Cheryl Strayed (KatyBee)
    KatyBee: Another woman's search.
  4. 30
    Now Is the Time to Open Your Heart af Alice Walker (aleahmarie)
    aleahmarie: An American woman reaching mid-life shrugs off all she has done in order to discover who she might be. Both stories resonate with spirituality, the feminine, and exotic travel.
  5. 31
    A Thousand Days in Venice af Marlena de Blasi (infiniteletters)
  6. 31
    How to Be Single af Liz Tuccillo (elizabeth.a.coates)
    elizabeth.a.coates: This is a way better book than Eat Pray Love. A similar premise but written well. The main character decides to go on a journey around the world and research how people are single in different countries. Humourous and endearing!
  7. 20
    Dreaming in Hindi af Katherine Russell Rich (amyblue)
  8. 10
    Enlightenment for Idiots af Anne Cushman (Katie_H)
  9. 10
    The View from Lazy Point: A Natural Year in an Unnatural World af Carl Safina (jordantaylor)
  10. 10
    Yoga Bitch: One Woman's Quest to Conquer Skepticism, Cynicism, and Cigarettes on the Path to Enlightenment af Suzanne Morrison (ainsleytewce)
  11. 21
    Pi's liv : roman af Yann Martel (FFortuna)
    FFortuna: Both deal with the same kind of mixed spirituality.
  12. 10
    A Woman Alone: Travel Tales from Around the Globe af Faith Conlon (PaperbackPirate)
    PaperbackPirate: I enjoyed this collection of short stories much more than Eat, Pray, Love.
  13. 10
    The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry: Love, Laughter, and Tears in Paris at the World's Most Famous Cooking School af Kathleen Flinn (DixonClassroom)
  14. 10
    It Sucked and Then I Cried: How I Had a Baby, a Breakdown, and a Much Needed Margarita af Heather Armstrong (spacepotatoes)
  15. 10
    Extra Virgin: A Young Woman Discovers the Italian Riviera, Where Every Month Is Enchanted af Annie Hawes (Bcteagirl)
  16. 10
    Holy Cow: An Indian Adventure af Sarah Macdonald (bogreader)
  17. 00
    Broken: A Love Story af Lisa Jones (nancenwv)
  18. 00
    A New Kind of Country af Dorothy Gilman (whymaggiemay)
    whymaggiemay: Similar books in that each is a writer and each journeys to a country to find herself. Different in that Dorothy Gilman did it without knowing that was what she was going to do, but Elizabeth Gilbert did it deliberately in order to write a book about it.… (mere)
  19. 33
    Mennonite in a Little Black Dress: A Memoir of Going Home af Rhoda Janzen (foggidawn)
    foggidawn: Both of these books deal with a woman looking for meaning and trying to deal with failed relationships in their past -- one travels the world, the other goes home, but both have written heartfelt and funny memoirs about the experience.
  20. 00
    Honey and Dust: Travels in Search of Sweetness af Piers Moore Ede (SqueakyChu)
    SqueakyChu: Both books contain noteworthy personal reflections felt while travelling as well as encounters with interesting people of different cultures.

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Human Spirit
  BooksInMirror | Feb 19, 2024 |
I re-read this book that I originally read when it was first published because I came across my hard copy of it when I was going through books to donate as I continue my downsizing project. And it begins with the letter "E,” which fills a prompt in The 52 Book Club. I loved the first third of the book and felt lukewarm about the remaining two-thirds. My opinion did not change on my second reading of it.

Three stars is generous, but I really did think the first third was quite well-done. I could relate to the implosion of her marriage (although I had married much longer and had three sons), which she explored in that first third (the "eat" part, I call it), although what differs is that unlike many people who are reeling from the disintegration of their marriages, she had enough money to go off and travel comfortably for a year, trying to find herself. I could relate to her emotional relationship with food in the "eat" section as well. This description was exquisite: “Sausages of every imaginable size, color and derivation are stuffed like ladies’ legs into provocative stockings, swinging from the ceilings of the butcher shops. Lusty buttocks of hams hang in the windows, beckoning like Amsterdam’s high-end hookers. The chickens look so plump and contented even in death that you imagine they offered themselves up for sacrifice proudly, after competing among themselves in life to see who could become the moistest and the fattest. But it’s not just the meat that’s wonderful in Lucca; it’s the chestnuts, the peaches, the tumbling displays of figs, dear God, the figs…”

I thought the "pray" third of the book was the weakest, and had I not been so in love with the first third, it might have been a DNF. This section is set in an ashram in India, where Ms. Gilbert tries to find serenity through meditation and prayer. I have read and enjoyed far better accounts of such spiritual journeys, so it was not that the subject matter was uninteresting to me; I just found the whole section fell flat.

The final section, "love", takes place in Bali, where Ms. Gilbert tries to synthesize all she has learned about herself in the previous parts of her journey. She settles on advice provided by an old medicine man, Ketut, who she meets there: “To meditate, only you must smile. Smile with face, smile with mind, and good energy will come to you and clean away dirty energy. Even smile in your liver.” To me, it was a lot better than the second part, but it did not live up to the promise of the first part. This is not a criticism of Ms. Gilbert and her choices, just my opinion that two thirds of the book did not live up to the promise of the first, and unfortunately, that disappointment I felt is reflected in my rating. ( )
  bschweiger | Feb 4, 2024 |
I’ll try to keep this part brief; I have had at some points in my life an annoying habit of defending the popular chick—on the other hand, people tend not to do that, actually. 😸

I guess, in short, I don’t understand why people feel threatened by a book they don’t want to read, even if it is popular. Should the world be like school, where we all have to agree, where we need permission, and therefore can only study the stuffiest crap? I mean, if you need the study the dark places, then just do that, right. There are more Holocaust books out there than anyone could ever read—try to eradicate and Hitler away a group with a deeply symbiotic relationship with the academy, boy, and your crimes will be /studied/. Even books about the oppression of Blacks, Native Americans, are definite niches in book world, and there are also many books by college-educated women who rant about how women have been dishonestly called stupid, basically, throughout history.

But also: some girls want to be happy, right. You are not diminished by the other girl being happy. And you are not enhanced by keeping your girl in her place, because-feminine-garbage-is-trash-and-if-she’s-a-girl-on-top-of-it-she-can’t-even-man-up-and-get-out-of-it, right. There is something subversive about a happy woman, a woman who doesn’t belong to somebody—or everybody, and who after having a nice meal can chat with a female swami, the guru-mother, right. And yet, she’ll also probably suffer from a lot of the same limiting beliefs as other women, despite having either a lot of money or perhaps a very high credit limit—she might still have the belief that being north of 29 makes her half-worthless, even though the 30s are really when life begins in earnest, really.

I’m sure that some people might have a little schadenfreude to hear that the girl who doesn’t play hockey or translate Homer is in pain, but, you know. Maybe people can regularly be extraordinarily toxic, you know.

…. Yes, the happy woman is very scary to people, even if she’s not always happy. But she’s /on the road/ to being happy—and that’s not allowed.

…. And, you know, it is kinda comic/toxic that the all-male all-celibate hierarchy of the Catholic Church, for example, still gets on people’s cases for not having children. Even Pope Francis, I think, was making fun of childless couples for getting a pet, you know. It’s like, /you/ think that reading “Eat Pray Love” may or may not violate your poverty chastity misery vows the way that going to see “Little Women” with a date Certainly would—and it’s only a toss up because of the last few decades, you know, before that it would have been like Burn the witch! She wants to get married!—but it’s also your responsibility to get me to father children, regardless of whether or not I get into a circumstances-position early enough in life to make that reasonable, you know, (you can’t really father a child well past a certain age, to some extent even from the biological aspect of birth defects), let alone the emotional stress and the ability to parent well, you know…. And it’s like, You know that Jane Austen and Louisa May Alcott never got married, right? —Ah, but that was so late on history. The Age of Men had almost passed away, like the Age of Elves and Dwarfs before them…. —What, don’t you have faith? The Age of Men will never pass away, nor the Romano-British Empire pass into l’histoire, so long as men believe…. We will yet raise up sons and heirs to our glorious Empire!…. Let’s drink! —Let’s drink! —To sons, to heirs, to community-based childcare! —Eh, not on your life. —To automatic immunity from child abuse charges! —We’ll see what we can do; I will speak to Chancellor Palpatine on your behalf….

—Anyway, one day religion will wake the fuck up, and it’ll be great, you know. 😸

…. And hey, colorism is going down! The /Italians/ are gonna end it for us! ‘Cause he’s a brown-eyed boy…. 👀

…. I like how she talks about God. (The classic woman—the ‘real woman’ or whatever—always believes in God or whatever it is. The atheist is one of the faces of the ‘real man’ basically, and a very unusual face, at that.) Part of me would like to know as much “theology” as a being of pure spirit, but a lot of knowing too much about weird stuff and abnormally intelligent theology, just isn’t…. (I mean, conservatives like to mouth those words at people they don’t think worthy, then do the abnormal mess of thinking themselves to a weird degree.) Liz does it much healthier than a lot of people.

…. Of course, she can be a mess too. But she doesn’t try to fake you out like we were playing basketball or something. Sometimes when pastors misbehave, it’s like they did it in between learning 16th century German to read Luther, “So I may be a schmuck: but I’m a smart, smart schmuck.” And I’m not saying that I’m better than that or I’m not better than that, but I am saying that when Liz is a mess, she just briefly and powerfully says, I’m a mess, and we should respect that. It’s hard to be free when you’re a know-it-all, right.

…. —It wasn’t that I wanted to study each country objectively, like others had done, but to subjectively study myself and one aspect of life in a place that excelled at that aspect of life.

More people would benefit from looking at life that way, and that is also how I read books. The objectivity junkies look at things like: Homer understood war, so your book about it isn’t as good; it isn’t necessary. But each of us are different people to some extent; if reading Homer is to teach us something, we must discover ourselves. Objectivity can be so self-defeating. Like the comedy memoir guy who read the encyclopedia set and wrote a funny book about knowing things: the know-it-all and-I-know-it’s-not-funny set whine that the book doesn’t live up to the impossible standard of the intellectual life, and even if he did it well, if somebody else did—it could be totally different, in the way that they did it, and who //they// were—but they’d whine that it had been done before. Pop culture whiners do it too. “Mommy there have been Star Wars movies already.” And did you like the last one? So that means you want the series to die? 😸 Many cultures understand if we whoever we are we tend not to, or to profess that we do not understand, that liking a story means wanting to tell it over and over. Either everything is unique, or nothing is, right. Have I lived before? Why, yes…. But I was different, in Ancient Greece, than I am now.

Also, I would like to get out of my shell and travel. As a book reader sometimes you hide away and read your book, you hide the world away. You never have fun, you never relax. But you can see yourself doing those things—and then you can do it.

And, yes—you don’t have to exclude: a good spiritual life or a good physical life. Physical or spiritual? Yes. —People are more likely to //say// that nowadays, but the locked-in-the-mind set tend to be incredibly dishonest or at least self-deluded about it. And it’s not enough to say, “Yes, I am self-deluded…. And I’m the best. (back to book).” You can’t always guarantee Total Freedom in this Life, but you know you can start the journey, and that the journey is what counts, not disallowing other people’s journeys or whining that you need one or whining about yourself, or whatever.

…. People make fun of “People” magazine, and books like this, but both of them have talked about (technically, completed vs contemplated) suicide, you know. Of course, some people who read People magazine probably are suicidal and suicide-inducing, you know—no judgment, of course, we all deserve another chance in my book—but you could say the same thing about doctors of science, and doctors of theology, you know. If you eliminated every sort of life that might have a bad end, you’d be left with the paranoid’s life, or the life of the hypocrite, I guess, and those can come to a bad end, too.

[N.B. I actually stopped reading “People” magazine, actually, because I feel like there are ~too many~ albeit rather short stories, so to ‘keep up’ you’d have to watch like 37 movies listen to 34 albums watch 12 TV shows and read 7 books, so that you could then understand about a paragraph of commentary about each, you know. Industry Magazine (New Jersey) has some entertainment news, but is mostly a lifestyle mag more generally, and I find that and other magazines I like mesh better with my very, very casual in terms of time invested, (but thoughtful) following of pop/entertainment culture, you know.

I also incidentally started reading this book (incidentally I’m in the middle of at least a few dozen books at any one time, and believe it or not, I spend time NOT reading too, lol 😂 ), being a Christian, wishing that “theology” would grow up, etc…. And now I think, Christianity gave us Saint Therese of Lisieux, who—I fucking swear I’m not making this up—wanted to be Jesus’ BALL TOY FOR HIM TO PLAY WITH, so that she wouldn’t have any “personal will”, you know; and Elizabeth Gilbert created “Eat Pray Love” for herself in an age when the Catholic Church has NOT changed and the overwhelming majority of Christians are at best ambivalent and sometimes angry about the end of the Age of Saint Therese, you know.

I hate to be a dick, but: good riddance. Good riddance to a religion that brainwashed women into wanting to be a fucking living ball toy or whatever; holy fuck! It’s like something you’d Make Up to insult Christians, and they literally and solemnly hold her up as a Model: to the present day, this minute.]

…. I actually don’t think it’s less religious to think that you could be talking with the subconscious or another aspect of your personality, as opposed to an angel or a god within you or Jesus or the One, you know. We must have been created as much more than we imagine ourselves to be…. God knows I can do and feel more now than when I felt the dread of continued existence, and I intend to continue to expand.

…. I don’t know if I ever literally told Inner Self, ‘I don’t believe in you’, you know, but I remember once taking my notebook and crossing out each page, corner to corner again and again, and then throwing it away, like I didn’t want to write anymore; that was like me being angry that I was alive. Then later I became afraid that I was alive, and then more simply secretly angry at others—I mean trends over years, and each one was actually an improvement,even, or, almost especially the last, since I’m not a terribly angry-with-others sort of a personality…. Eventually it does grate on you, no matter how you water it down, though. Eventually it’s like…. I’m grateful that I’m alive; I look for the best and I find it.

…. And you know, clearly feeling fear or anger isn’t the same as being ‘bad’, you know, although one wants more for oneself, you know…. I used to nail myself to my own cross and think that I was Jesus, you know…. (🤧 But nothing real is ever really lost, OMG….)

…. I think she’s right that lots of people—“Americans”, but then, there are Americans all over the country, and sometimes in other places—tend to be entertainment-seeking, but also (she doesn’t quite use this middle term, but) anxious, and almost pleasure-averse, or at least not terribly welcoming of pleasure, though, even though we stress about not having money to pull down for thrills, you know. But then we go and we moan, Oh but this is //stupid//….

…. (Re: ‘why do we bother trying to make pizza in Stockholm? God, why do we bother doing Anything?’)

It’s always funny for me, to be reminded how different the Swedes—the people in Sweden—are from, you know, blonde Americans. 🤓🥱😴

…. I’m not re-reading my whole review right now, but just because I know that sometimes I defend the honor of girls from academic hooligans (I’m making fun of myself), (deep breath), I don’t know. I’ve been reading a little Wayne Dyer/Louise Hay, on relationships and other things—I don’t do it constantly, but I go back to it because it’s good, and I want the good, even if I don’t want to dull the edge and turn it into cant, right…. I mean, yes, there are insufferable little know-it-alls, even if they aren’t really insufferable, and intellectuals mock people on the internet, and get their insults incorporated into Wikipedia articles, and even if people dislike being made fun of, the anti-ad intellectuals have checked out, they live in the clouds, you know; they really don’t give a rat’s ass about how people feel…. But you know, a conscious person can get along with the person that “you can’t get along with”, and Elizabeth got along with her sister in this memoir, even though they were different, and there was another point too, but I don’t want too much clutter, you know…. I mean, I couldn’t do the whole thing I’ve been reading about as a separate review of one of those books, but just to tack it on here where it really does tie in, I wanted to do that, you know…. I don’t really it know it that well yet, but, I know what I’d like to do different, and that’s to be less angry at people and to just be different from them, which is ironically how they’d rather I be anyway strangely, but I guess I gotta be okay with that! 👌

…. I guess the Italians are kinda like the Ancient Greeks—much better individually, than collectively.

…. I see myself having much less to say about India than Italy—or Indonesia, probably; India’s role in this journey, I mean—but the first things that hits me is that when she becomes religious or whatever, she immediately ~senses~ home, fellowship, and relationship, unlike the majority of religious men, maybe, including me, when I was a religious man, (and my father, the aristocrat of the book club), who go for the ideas and the idea-thumping, you know. The rhetoric I won’t talk about, you know. “Me and my ego are in a beautiful relationship; why can’t the world see? Thoughts, group? No, not you. You intimidate me. You. You look frightened of me. Say something, please—and briefly, if you don’t mind.”

But India is a beautiful place, and holiness is beautiful.

…. I guess it is surprising, even for me, to see her do a book that does the spiritual/ultimate well, which is not Only spiritual/ultimate, and which is so popular, and in which she is a woman.

…. Liz talking to Richard from Texas is not entirely unlike Deepak Chopra talking to Sadhguru, you know. Very rim/center, if you like.

I also find it highly believable that, outside of the monasteries, Indian soda is more, well, American, than what we sell here in the States. Pop India often has the feel of a place that’s absorbed the Hollywood surge of America without half (3/4?) of the regulations—far more marked as different, than different. (Ie sometimes brown men like to go for a joyride too, though little white boys from Kansas cannot fathom this inscrutable idea.)

…. I think it was Krishna Dass who quoted some Indian woman as saying, “It’s all grace—but you also have to do something”. I also like Liz’s metaphor of the two horses—Fate & Free Will.

But I also don’t want to spend too much time trying to Understand Perfectly. I feel like you understand what you can by reading a bit about it, often in passing, and by keeping your eyes open and living the right way, you know. Whatever you can’t understand by doing that, you would probably only make a bigger mess of by giving up all your other interests and throwing a fit until you understand Fate, you know. (shrugs) I stopped trying to defend Calvin and all those people, and not because there’s no Fate or whatever you want to call it—just because they never seemed to mean what they actually said, basically.

…. “Woe’s me for thee, unhappy Prosperine” of India….

…. I anticipated the Bali chapter being rather different than it is, as it’s actually (despite the medicine man visit) kinda a Hindu society rather than a shamanistic one, and it sounds pretty Indian, in the Indian-mother sort of sense. Of course, I have learned about it a bit and for that I’m grateful, and I also know that I don’t really know that much—and that of course India and Bali ~are different of course, as Canada and Australia ~are actually different places, as any botanist could tell you, you know. Actually I guess France and Quebec would be a better comparison, but you get the idea. It just does seem like, for country-idea-pairs book—which Is a pretty good idea for a book, less ‘perfect’ and chessman-y than many nonfiction books, and more brainy and thought-out than many popular ones—most of the contrast between ‘India’ and ‘Bali’ is between monastery and mom-culture, so that it’s almost like, ‘Eat Nun-Prayers Mother-Prayers’, which is a big surprise after ‘going to meet a shaman’, you know…. Of course, it won’t come as a surprise to Bali, or the world, that nobody needs the permission of an individual named goosecap to live their life. But it seems like somebody is trying to woo me with the idea of balance being, I don’t know, it’s not that nobody needs community—but it just seems like kinda an overactive, mentally lazy community: or something along those lines~ that needs to have everyone sleep in a pigeonhole with their label on it so that they don’t slit their wrists with the mental torment of not understanding, you know.

Don’t get me wrong: some of the Western societies are the worst, the very worst, and much of what’s admired in the West today, whether by its own or other people, is the result of it falling on its ass so hard it dropped, in certain times and places, so many of its neuroses—at least, that’s what the West bills you for, you know. But I can’t look at any particular other society as a perfect blueprint, or pretend that I’m not a paleface, or pretend that I admire a sort of gendered stasis, you know, no matter how many books the men at the top have read.

…. I don’t know whether anybody really rules America, or whether it’s all just chaos and racism; and I don’t know why we-the-American-Christians bother trying to convert the world, knowing that the others are going to be just as much cursed outsiders at the end as at the beginning.

…. It would be so wrong to be naive about (if I may say so) the rest of the world, you know. “My dad is probably the only sexist; if it doesn’t happen to me/my sister, it’s probably not sexism….” 🤪

…. It’s a good book. It’s a real book.

…. Even in magical Bali, people are often too “humble” to accept a gift, properly, if you like. Granted it is entirely just and commendable to be generous with one’s things. “Tell everyone they can stay with me if they ever visit Bali.” But it is an entirely inappropriate way to treat oneself, for Wayan, if she is given a house because she is in need, and has a friend who has a million friends who send money, to say, “This is not Wayan’s house.” The trouble we give ourselves! Even across in the world, in another place, even “kind” people are often not well. Even the healers.

…. It’s a good book.

…. I find myself more sympathetic to Wayan’s “everything at the proper time, not before” POV than I would have been before reading, I guess it was, “The Key of Solomon the King”, (Renaissance magic, basically), but I do think that her attitude can be a little extreme and unhelpful. Personally, I don’t use the word “superstition” the way an atheist (or many a Christian) would, but I think that when customs harden and become inflexible rather than pragmatic, as a rule you start to see something approaching superstition. Really any family-tyranny society the way that most societies’ majorities have been for most of history promotes that unreasonable hardening of customs that probably had a solid core, you know. Granted than an atheist thinks you’re a nut, either way. But then, atheists usually consider themselves victims of the industrial machine—perhaps not the most pleasant state of mind?

So: yeah, I can imagine myself and might very well consult an astrologer for a good date for closing on a house, you know. (I think I would rather rent than tie myself down like a serf for three decades, but I digress.) Certainly Mercury Retrograde would be out of the question. Even my job coach/friend Peter wouldn’t do that, and he’s not ~super~ magical, you know.

Maybe I would try to get a little feng shui advice about the house (apartment), you know, although maybe not. (The Chinese system is certainly easier to get info on than whatever they use in Bali. I have no special ties to Bali.) I’d certainly not want an overwhelming bad intuition, you know; and obviously you cleanse a house after you buy it in case people lived there who had bad vibes. (Say, they were normies, for example, lol.) I don’t think the “feng shui” (near a river!) thing would be the huge case closed deal breaker for me that it was for her, though.

I’m sure I wouldn’t need a ~dream~ confirmation, though. Maybe if I had a really terrible nightmare I’d ask, say using tarot cards, if that had to do with the house (apartment) deal. But I think it’s a combination of almost presumptuousness and impracticality to go to a temple and inform the gods that you’re not going to move forward until they send you a dream, you know. What if they say, Fuck you and your need for a dream, just figure out an auspicious closing date ~ you know?

Barring a woman from going to a temple because she’s menstruating is a lot. I’m sorry, but that’s just a lot.

…. Bali sounds like a real neurotic paradise, you know. First you have the Westerners, who want to live in the tropics for cheap and not do too much work, while living in an exotic culture and seeming chic. Now, I am a Westerner who lives, not in Bali, in America, but without too much money and without putting in as many hours as most people do, (getting off benefits is…. Complicated; people say they want you off, in Republican speeches, but they also make you sound greedy if you literally want to be non-poor—calling people greedy is the American way, lol—and I’ve never had the skills to support myself before; it’s all new to me), and although I’m not ex-corporate in that sense—although many, many of the spiritual/new age books I’ve read are by ex-corporate people; I used to kinda put that population on a pedestal until I realized that one day, that could be ~me~, you know: at least I could ~try~, lol—but yeah, a lot of my mental illness (although obviously what mental illness does is spiral out of control, anybody’s control) was initially a subconscious defense mechanism to avoid the dirty, immoral world of money I wasn’t confident I could succeed in, you know…. (And again: eventually it became subliminal suicidality, you know….) So I get the whole thing of wanting to or not believing in work, but I think as often as not, that’s a trap. Going to Bali because you like the culture (although it sounded kinda repressive to me) or the climate or the people is one thing, but going there and carrying on some kind of useful, practical work seems like it would be a better blessing to give to those people than, “I can live here in a tropical paradise and work as little as people on benefits”, you know. It’s one thing if you can work a bit less and be productive and rich. But if you work a bit less because you’re work-shy—impractical and “noble” or whatever…. Yeah, no. That’s something to work on.

And then a lot of the Balinese people don’t feel like they have agency, because they’re poor non-Westerners, because they’re socialized to be dependent on social control, and because the Westerners who show up don’t do much to alleviate any of that, right…. So then—I don’t know how to say this in a non-stigmatizing way—but they start to look on tourist scams as a business, right. It’s legitimate business for them. Like, I don’t have the agency, for MULTIPLE reasons, to create a paradise hotel ethically: so I’ll just tell people stories, you know; siphon off some of the white God’s cash; he’ll never miss it…. It all originates in their lack of belief in their own agency, for reasons both within and from outside their own native culture. It sounds REALLY sad, you know. Really sad….

I’m not sure if I said that the way I wanted to…. But it’s very like, codependent: two people, in this case, two groups, enabling each other to be their worst selves, basically.

…. It’s a cray cray world, but it’s a good good book…. I don’t believe in the concept of “required reading”: not Homer, not Toni Morrison, nothing: first and foremost “requiring” people to pretend to read really just requires pretending, you know. It also promotes oppression, basically, which is obviously what the whole Greek thing became, despite the Greeks being a very wild people, and a very different from the style of oppression later carried on in their name…. Also, if you oppress ANYBODY, pretty soon it will also oppress Black people, you know: even if you “adapted” it, lol…. Hey Jay-Z? You finish reading those 39 books yet? Y’all gotta write a book report. Yeah homie, I was supposed to tell you before; I forgot brother; I tripped you up…. ~(angry white guy) (snaps pencil) I had to read those 39 books because now the |blackpeople| control everything…. I’ll get them back…. I’ll get them BACK….

lol.

But yeah: I don’t believe in required reading, but I do believe in feeding to Captain Hook’s crocodile all the people who mock books that they Obviously Do Not Understand, lol…. 😂

It’s a good book.

…. It’s a middlebrow book, you know. It’s a general memoir: it’s about the real personal story of someone not part of an unassimilated culture, and not part of history, religion, or spirituality, academics, etc. Just an ordinary girl. But it’s not poorly written, and draws freely on different kinds of material that a specialist might write a more narrow book about, you know. The most important thing is that it’s healthy. The world would be better if people were happy and healthy. And part of that is supplementing and fitting in between the “best”, coldest books, and the warm, sugary, sweet-n-low books with middlebrow books that kinda fit artfully in between. In between two words! (Or three or four, lol!)

…. And I don’t know that good middlebrow books are the “best” books—there are no “best” books, only books—but I would say that a good middlebrow book is probably among the most-undervalued kind of book. A good high-lit book can indeed be very good: but then it is also considered very good. A sweet-n-low book might be mocked, but, although it should not be mocked, neither should it be taken too seriously. But a good middlebrow book is the good book likely to be considered “bad”, you know.

…. Holy gods, the child was Loki; that’s so funny. 😆

—Hermes, good Hermes: protect us from Loki.
—(lollipop out) Do I gotta. (lollipop in)
—Yes!
—Ok. (beat) I love you….

If you want to exist, just do what Hermes did. Hermes created the world. He created his mother. I started out in the Other Place, the Otherworld, but then I imagined…. I visualized…. It all starts with a dream, an idea. I dreamed that there would be a mother, someone to love me and take care of me and protect me and nurture me. I love the mother, so I invented her…. I imagined and I imagined and I imagined…. And then there was a mother, and she collected some seed; she got a good deal on it, and then there I was. I had been invented. And I got some milk, too. Later that day, I stole the cattle of Apollo the sun god. So yeah, that’s how I invented the ~world~, you know. After all, I’m god—if I didn’t create the world, who was going to do it? Hermes had to see it to, diligently, emotively, magically.

…. (Hermes explains this idea to the elders in the temple)
—That’s a good idea, Hermes, a very good story…. But I think that the way we’ll tell the story is, we’ll make you a tree: because trees reproduce asexually. Much, much better story this way. Safer. Better.
(Hermes rolls his eyes like, whatever)

…. I’m here reading over the finished review both for the pleasure of perspective—I guess the primary reason I invest time in LT; there’s no money in it and no one seems to care, you know: but it provides A LOT of perspective, and if it weren’t for the ad money or however they monetize it for themselves so that they don’t have to charge us and can increase the user base that way, realistically it probably IS worth paying for and it’s free you know; perspective is valuable—but yeah and also the minor necessity of reading it over to correct the easily-fixed sloppy wording, although if I had to undo a whole sentence or something, it would basically just be Present Ted fucking with Past Ted’s freedom of speech, so I leave it alone if it’s just sloppy or something; only if it were truly a big mistake I’ve left behind earlier in this lifetime would I delete it: although if it were like that I’d just delete the whole review, the whole book; individual sentences aren’t really like that—and also lol I have to correct typos which realistically are iPhone mis-corrections, sometimes of correctly-typed originals; although of course it probably does save time taken as a whole, you know…. Still, it’s odd; it’s recently acquired this tic where sometimes it’ll turn ‘that’ into ‘that’s’, where ‘that’ is correct and ‘that’s’ is incorrect, you know…. Sometimes, anyway….

But yeah: sometimes I read and I try to gain perspective and I just think, I’m a mystery. I don’t know everything about my journey. There’s always more of me in here…. (smiles)

…. Postscript: It’s sorta like a spiritual memoir, although it’s also not; it’s also sorta like a mental health memoir, although it’s also not. The fact that she has a real life apart from her illness, and even that (especially that?) she actually recovers from her illness and returns to full functionality, kinda masks that at one point she was not obviously going to ‘win’ against her illness, you know. It is different from the majority of mental health memoirs. Some kinda don’t do much at all except get diagnosed, (the majority of mental health cases in general are like this in my experience), they just get diagnosed and take meds and talk to doctors and professionals and then run around with their equally ill girlfriends or boyfriends, and stay medium ill at best, for the entire span of the book until the end. Certain others just go to meetings or parrot teachings, perhaps, but use this as an escape mechanism and never actually live their lives. That can be a tough one. I myself love reading, but it doesn’t feel good when the non-reading part of my day doesn’t go well, you know. (Although often it does, now.)

It’s that balance, that Elizabeth practices, you know.

…. After-note: I am sometimes reminded of the unearned benefit of being gendered male, you know. There are some conscious girls, but I think it’s hard for the average girl to read something like this, ~~and take it seriously—, you know. It’s not a “good” book; it’s a “female” book. Women like “female” books; “good” people like “good” books—and never the twain shall meet, right…. The average girl is like, Oh it was female; how fun—and the “good person” is like, Death yo you, woman! Happiness is the work of the wickedness; —and then the girl is like, Oh, wow. My femaleness must really be provoking you to sin. I apologize for making things hard for you. If only EYE could be a good person, too…. (finds book: “Following in the footsteps of my seven brothers and our storm trooper father: “Electra”’s journey”)….

Whereas if you’re a guy, and you finally realize what you have to do to be balanced, right…. I mean: there are “hazards to being male”; that was a book I haven’t read, although personally it always reminds me of, I don’t know, art history prose, right…. But then you figure out what you have to do and some jerk is like, hon hon hon, we meet again, 👨‍🎨 ⚔️, and it’s like, I’m sorry, we were talking about what a giant dick you are, and how you needed to go home and give your dick and nice fuck so you could stop being you: yeah, I’m totally behind you. I support your decision to go fuck yourself 100%, ok. 👌

Just don’t forget we all have our own ways of finding happiness! *pushes off cliff of endless falling* “hon hon hon, I am falling….!”

(shrugs) It’s a paradox.
  goosecap | Jan 28, 2024 |
Writer takes a year to travel to Italy, India and Bali on a personal journey of faith.
  bentstoker | Jan 26, 2024 |
Story: 5 / 10
Characters: 9
Prose: 9
Content density: 7 ( )
  MXMLLN | Jan 12, 2024 |
Viser 1-5 af 851 (næste | vis alle)
Gilbert is suffering from shattered confidence. Who hasn't been there? Who hasn't cried on a bathroom floor, sure that our life is over at 32? Gilbert's beauty is that she isn't exceptional; she's just an ordinary gal with a broken heart and gift for writing.
 
Lacking a ballast of gravitas or grit, the book lists into the realm of magical thinking: nothing Gilbert touches seems to turn out wrong; not a single wish goes unfulfilled. What's missing are the textures and confusion and unfinished business of real life, as if Gilbert were pushing these out of sight so as not to come off as dull or equivocal or downbeat.
 
Your book was recommended by a friend, and he's right in saying this story is awesome. Why don't you try to join N0velStar's writing contest?
tilføjet af Gab_Cruz | Redigerreview
 

» Tilføj andre forfattere (19 mulige)

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Elizabeth Gilbertprimær forfatteralle udgaverberegnet
Bustelo, GabrielaOversættermedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
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Tell the truth, tell the truth, tell the truth.*
----Sheryl Louise Moller

Except when attempting to solve emergency Balinese real estate transactions, such as described in Book 3.
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When you're traveling in India -- especially through holy sites and Ashrams -- you see a lot of people wearing beads around their necks. (Introduction)
I wish Giovanni would kiss me.
A few months after I'd left Indonesia, I returned to visit loved ones and celebrate the Christmas and New Year's holiday. (Final Recognition and Reassurance)
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When I get lonely these days, I think: So be lonely, Liz. Learn your way around loneliness. Make a map of it. Sit with it, for once in your life. Welcome to the human experience. But never again use another person's body or emotions as a scratching post for your own unfulfilled yearnings.
...I don't care how diligently scholars of every religion will try to sit you down with their stacks of books and prove to you through scripture that their faith is indeed rational; it isn't. If faith were rational, it wouldn't be—by definition—faith. Faith is belief in what you cannot see or prove or touch. Faith is walking face-first and full-speed into the dark.
Man is neither entirely a puppet of the gods, nor is he entirely the captain of his own destiny; he's a little of both.
Culturally, though not theologically, I'm a Christian.
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Forfatteren rejser efter sin skilsmisse ud i verden: Italien, Indien og Indonesien. Hun genfinder sig selv i den italienske mad, den indiske meditation og den nye kærlighed i Indonesien

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