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Posts Tagged ‘Wheel of Time’

image from dreamworlds.ru –

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Ever since my daughter introduced me to this film I’ve been fascinated with it. It is Labyrinth with David Bowie and Jennifer Connolly.  I love the imagery and the messages it puts across. I can empathise from the outset with Sarah who lives in her fantasy world, memorising the lines to her favourite story. What I wouldn’t give to have some of her costumes! (Yes I still love dressing up).  I especially love the ball scene where she dances in a beautiful ball gown.

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image from wendyroby.tumblr.com –

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At this point  everyone may be wondering what the purpose is in this ramble. It’s really simple, pure unadulterated escapism. I have heard this film described as a horror movie but whilst for a children’s movie there were scary parts in it, I thought it was a wonderful example of a young girl growing up. She finally had to realise that whilst she could retain her childhood innocence and wonder there was another world waiting for her too.

Jared, the Goblin King wants to control her, feed off her emotions by telling her he had “turned the world upside down… all for you”.  In reality he was changing reality to keep her enmeshed in his world where he could order things to his needs. When she finally remembers her lines “You have no power over me”, the spell is broken and she returns to reality.

Yet what is reality? Is it the hours we spend hunched in pain and agony as illness rips us apart. (poetic license). Yet tonight that is precisely what it feels like. My innards feel like a volcano is erupting, violently and often, and I cannot rest or even forget for a few moments what is happening. (Thank you Lyme disease). Hence my escape into something as far from my reality as possible. It is permissible to use whatever means we can at times like these.

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image from pinktentacle.com

Of course I did consider using the film Volcano with Tommy Lee Jones as my example but there’s no idyllic subterfuge hidden within its drama. Love the film but I needed that total opposite to illustrate the difference. I would much rather be Jennifer Connolly in a beautiful ball gown, even in a fairytale than stuck in molten magma, the bowels of the earth ripping and tearing and spewing forth in fearsome splendor.

Now that I think of it, as an avid Robert Jordan fan I could use the imagery of a Darkhound or a Myrddraal as my nemesis. I suppose it all depends on what most resonates with you.  I love Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series so either will be suitable for me.

image from onlyhdwallpapers.com

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Then again perhaps I would like to be Moiraine, an Aes Sedai, wielder of magic and able to be healed by another. That sounds fine right about now.

Back to meditate for some rest.

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image from totalbalance.com.au

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No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality.”
Shirley Jackson, The Haunting of Hill House

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Blessings one and all in our own form of escapism or coping skills.  Susan x

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People are like stained – glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.
Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

It is impossible to deny, there is both light and dark inside everyone. Each human being, each soul has the ability to perceive both the light and the dark.  This simple fact is explicit in everything we do and say. It provides the balance by which we grow as human beings and as souls in a human body.

There are times when, despite our best endeavors we are overcome by the dark, by “the bleakness”. I first heard this term in a novel I was reading.  In short, a race of people who were warriors, the Aiel,  detested another, the Tinkers,  who followed the ways of peace, who not only turned the other cheek but would sooner die than raise a weapon in their own defense. During a sacred Aiel ceremony, where a man would become either a clan chief or die, or a woman would become a wise one or die, they learned their entire people’s history. What they learned was the peaceful Tinkers were actually the original Aiel people.

Understandably, this sudden turning upside down of their world was overwhelming. Those who were unable to deal with this dropped their weapons and simply walked away. It was described as “being taken by the bleakness”.  For those who recognise the plot, it is from a Robert Jordan series, “The Wheel of Time”. For brevity I have shortened the explanation greatly.

image from    modernmartialartist.com.au

And the symbol used in the book:

image from http://www.comicvine.com

It intrigued me, not only for the magic and abilities of the characters, but for the way the dichotomy between the light and dark within ourselves can be similarly described. It was also interesting that the Yin Yang symbol was adapted to illustrate the light and dark forces at play.

As souls having a human existence we strive to reach the light, to increase its presence in our lives, in our bodies and souls.  We practice drawing the white light of the universe down, through the crown chakra, flooding our body with positive energy and removing any negative energy.

image from soundofheart.org

In meditation I follow this daily, and as a practice in the shower it is soothing and energising.  There are times when I can only reach that feeling of calm whilst I am meditating or showering ( a shower meditation), but the dross of the day sometimes overwhelms me again. It irritates me and I try to remind myself that I am only human, a soul in a human body and I am a long way from perfection. Anyone who knows me will recognise that I have been going through my own form of “the bleakness” of late.

Yet that in itself is also comforting – eventually! I am like a Willow, I will bend before the storm but I will not break like the mighty Oak. We draw our inspiration from strange places, places which are important to each of us but may have no relevance to another.We have to acknowledge our dark side, those undercurrents of “bleakness” so that we are able to see the light in all its glory when it occurs, just like the sunlight after a storm.

It is a measure of our soul growth that, in the midst of chaos and despair we still strive for the light.

Like a protagonist in any battle we often feel thrown from one extreme stance to another. It is somewhat like being a tennis ball or a basket ball, any ball in sport, we are tossed, seemingly at whim to and fro until we are unsure where up or down is.  I know that anyone reading yesterdays blog will wonder if the same person is writing this. Change can happen quickly or not, a slow return or smashing volley.

image from http://www.odt.co.nz – The Nadal, Federer match.

Like a small bud opening to the suns first rays, we are small and fragile but can open to be a beautiful bloom. Even though our ‘life’ may be short there are more buds on our tree and we will continue to grow and flower with the sun, the light shining on us. We can only wake each day, or take a deep breath during the day and make that decision to keep going. Find something, even something small to be thankful for. Grateful for the scent of the opened roses, freshly mown grass, the laughter of children playing, the warmth of your husband’s hand in yours. It may even be a simple ‘thank you’ from someone for something you thought too insignificant to remember, yet it was important to them. They are often hard to remember when things feel grim, but like the turning of the seasons we cannot stop them if we continue to be mindful of everyday things and grateful that we can be resent to experience them. No, the battle may not be over, but then neither am I.

image from jbeachyphotography.blogspot.com


May you too find your heavenly fire to light your way out of the darkness, my blessings and gratitude for you will continue each day, hopefully brightening your day knowing that there is indeed someone out there who truly cares for you for no other reason that you are there.

“There is in every true woman’s heart a spark of heavenly fire, which lies dormant in the broad daylight of prosperity; but which kindles up, and beams and blazes in the dark hour of adversity.”  ~Washington Irving, The Sketch Book, 1820

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“A home without books is a body without soul”.  by Marcus Tullius Cicero

home library

image courtesy of cindysbookclub.blogspot.com

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I love reading, always have and by now, really don’t believe  that will ever change. In this move to the digital format I am losing something I’ve always treasured. It’s that moment when you first open your new book, fresh from the bookstore. It has a crisp feel, fresh, new, the smell of paper and ink and the knowledge that it hasn’t been read by anyone else.  A freshly brewed cup of tea by my arm, my book in hand and I’m set for an hour or so.  Ok, if I’m honest I may have to take a few breaks but I can be lost for the entire day, or night.  It’s a wonderful feeling.  I can fully engage my characters, even insert myself into the story as one of the characters and then I’m also living an entirely different life from the sometimes mundane one we have to tread day by day.  Reading the last page is torturous. You hope and pray the author has a sequel (or three) in mind and you can pick up once more where you have to leave your other life. It truly is a marvellous escape and apart from the cost of the book (yes, it isn’t always inexpensive) it harms absolutely no-one, yet allows you the opportunity to live in a magical, foreign landscape for a time.

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“Fantasy is escapist, and that is its glory. If a soldier is imprisoned by the enemy, don’t we consider it his duty to escape?. . .If we value the freedom of mind and soul, if we’re partisans of liberty, then it’s our plain duty to escape, and to take as many people with us as we can!”
J.R.R. Tolkien

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By now I think you can gather that I’m a totally absorbed by good print media. I’m afraid I cannot, nor would I sully my description of a good read, to include the many tabloids abounding today. (Papers, magazines, take your poison). In their attempt to capture audience they have devolved to publishing half-truths or total fabrications without license for who they hurt in the process.   We are bombarded by half researched , ill-conceived and dangerous posturing from our ‘purported leaders’ and passed on as gospel by the journalists who write the stories.  I don’t altogether blame the journos, most have so many strictures placed on them to conform to “the powers that be” that they are unable to print the truth any longer if they wish to continue to work.  I will now hop off my soap box and return to normal viewing!

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woman reading book in front of tree
image courtesy of  katarinahalimloves.wordpress.com

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I have my trusty kindle now.  After many years of looking longingly at my library – which needs a removal truck just to carry them all,  I finally relented and bought one so I could once again immerse myself in my favourite form of escapism.  Looking day after day at my books, many of which are three or more inches thick, I could not hold them up because of the pinched nerve in my neck, which also stopped me from propping the book up and looking down at it.  After all, what good is a good story if it’s over with before you’ve managed to really sink your teeth into the story? Torment and torture on a daily basis.  Withdrawal symptoms which had reached a magnitude undreamed of.  I’m sorry, but that is how it felt, each and every day as I walked longingly past my treasured friends, running my fingers lovingly across their spines and wishing to be able to find a reading nook and curl up and lose myself temporarily within their covers. (sigh!)

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kindle reader
image courtesy of  xbitlabs.com

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One of my all time favourite escapism novels has been written by Robert Jordan, an amazing writer and wonderful storyteller.  His Wheel of Time series is huge – thankfully, and I add more condolences to his family at his passing a few years ago. Such was his passion and dedication to his craft that, on finding out he was terminally ill, he spent his remaining time dictating his unfinished series, numbering fourteen novels now, each larger than the first, to his wife and a ghost writer to complete after his passing.  We are now, that is all this avid fans of this series, awaiting the final instalment of this marvellous series.   He is, in the area of science fantasy, in my opinion at least, one of the marvels of our time. He managed to capture his audience on book one,  have so many sub plots and storylines running that you could draw a mind map to follow the convolutions, but so vivid, so incredibly believable that not for one millisecond did you doubt that you were right there, in the midst of the chaos and magic!  He reminds me of  J R R Tolkien, and  J K Rowling, different times and places but with an ability to transport their audience to a place totally unfamiliar at first but captured within moments in the brilliance of their writing. Ooops there I go again, waxing lyrical.  (I hope this doesn’t count as a soapbox too?)

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This is by no means the topic I was going to write about – it has taken on a life of its own and I will have to go back to my identity crisis later.  My kindle is calling, and my darling husband has just brewed me a pot of French Earl Grey tea. He has already learned one cup of reading time is simply not enough – wonderful man!  It’s a wonderful and gratifying thing that I can have so many loves in my life, the love of a good book, the amazing love of a wonderful man whom I adore and cannot bear to live without, the love of my fragrant garden,  the wildlife which visits me daily, especially my Boo Book Owl.  My family, my friends, the wonderful people who have honoured me by reading my blog.  Love you all dearly.  I’m learning and need to sort out how to tailor my meandering thoughts so that I know you’ll enjoy the saunter through my musings as much as I enjoy writing them. Perhaps that’s the message from my divergence into the world of reading; it’s what moves the author which eventually moves the reader.  Hmmmm.  Profound in its simplicity.

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I’m away to my kindle and Robert Jordan, French Earl Grey and I’ll be back later.

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Wheel of Time series

image courtesy of azonmania.co.cc        (unfinished series)

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“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body”.
Joseph Addison

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