Monthly Archives: May 2011

Against the Stream by Noah Levine–Review

Against the Stream: A Buddhist Manual for Spiritual RevolutionariesNoah Levine’s Against the Stream is a basic, no nonsense guide to Buddhist ideology, meditation and practice. Levine has training in both the Theravada and Mahayana traditions, but leans toward the Theravada tradition in his own practice and in this guide. (There are other differences between both traditions, but the main one is that the Theravada tradition emphasizes the achievement of liberation for oneself and the Mahayana tradition emphasizes helping others to achieve liberation as well as oneself.)

Read the rest of this review at Associated Content

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I Am Not a Writer (Yet)

When I grow up, I want to be a writer.

No, seriously, I want to be a writer when I grow up.

Here are some of the problems:

I have somehow managed to acquire a meme that states that “real writers” are instantly successful and are discovered and become famous. This is not helped by certain people mentioning that some kid managed to get a lot of money for a book of poetry he wrote. What has apparently not occurred to those certain people is that the reason they heard about this on the news is because things like this DON’T HAPPEN VERY OFTEN. Continue reading

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Filed under random thoughts, speshul thinking

Book Review: Changeless by Gail Carriger

Orbit
374 pp.

Changeless (The Parasol Protectorate)In Changeless, Our Heroine is rudely awakened by her husband who rushes off without telling her what’s going on,which is quite a lot. The pack regiment is currently camped out on the front lawn, Alexia is once more being accused of random acts of exorcism and soul sucking while dodging mysterious assassins. Then Lord Maccon rushes off to Scotland todeal with a situation involving his former pack. To make things more interesting, the commander of the regiment is a insufferable twit, her best friend is having romantic adventures, one of her sisters is visiting and there is a hatter who is a mad scientist.

Not knowing what else to do and having a sincere desire to find out what the heckis going on, Alexia goes after her husband. Continue reading

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Filed under alternate history, fantasy, Gail Carriger, mystery, Review: Book, steam punk

Book Review: 1636: The Saxon Uprising, by Eric Flint

Baen
424pp.

1636: The Saxon Uprising: N/A (The Ring of Fire)
Available on Amazon

In this book, Gustav Adolph’s cousin quietly investigates the circumstances around Chancellor Oxenstierna’s power grab and the ensuing succession crisis, Gretchen, the Committees of Correspondence defend Dresden, and various other groups, rise in opposition to Oxenstierna’s attempt to take over the government. (And are able to play it quite convincingly that they’re on the side of the angels–because they are–since Oxenstierna is deliberately trying to change the entire system that had already been decided upon by everyone, and everyone else are continuing to play by the rules already deciding on and more or less  fighting back to maintain those rules.) Continue reading

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Filed under alternate history, Eric Flint, Review: Book, science fiction elements, time travel

Book Review: Dark Companion by Andre Norton

Baen 
410 pp.

Dark CompanionI really like that Baen has been reprinting Andre Norton’s works (though there are times when I wonder why they chose the novels they did to combine into each of the omnibuses). This would almost be one of those times, except that I can kind of see the logic since both novels deal with adults (or near adults) who are responsible for the welfare of children in a dangerous situation. Dark Companion is the omnibus edition of Dark Piper and Dread Companion. This is my first time reading both of these books because I generally kept to her Witch World novels with only occasional forays into her science fiction. Continue reading

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Filed under Andre Norton, distant future, faerie, fantasy, science fiction, space exploration

Peril of a Slippery Definition

I have never felt particularly comfortable talking about my religious beliefs (or my occasional lack of same). I can blame this on having deeply embarrassed myself on several occasions when I was at least nominally Christian. (On one very memorable occasion, I invited a Baptist to my church–my eight year old self not realizing that Baptists are in fact Christian. The girl got her revenge in the form of her ill-tempered Sunday school teacher aunt and an invitation to her church’s summer vacation bible school.) I was interested in the beliefs of others and found a great deal I wasn’t very comfortable with in the religion I was raised in. Continue reading

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Filed under pagan, random thoughts

Signs That You May Need to Shut Up Now

My current class is Sociology and we have threaded discussions, in the classroom’s online shell. We were discussing “nature versus nurture,” and in the course of this discussion, someone uttered the dreaded line “well, we’re all disabled in a way.” This simple-minded line of course nearly made my head explode with sheer outrage. Despite my extreme dislike of the line, I managed to be somewhat polite in pointing out that what she said was extremely stupid.

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Filed under rant, skool daze