Friday, January 20, 2017

The 52 Lists Project: A Year of Weekly Journaling Inspiration by Moorea Seal

I first ordered The 52 Lists Project: A Year of Weekly Journaling Inspiration by Moorea Seal last January after I read about it in an article I have long since forgotten. I liked the idea so much I sent copies to a few friends and my nieces. As stated it's a journal. The prompts are often thought-provoking without seeming overwhelming. They push journalers to look deeper inside and to examine the lives they live, the world around them, and the lives they wish they lived. Seal is on to something with this book. While I started it late and didn't really dedicate myself to it at first, when I finally did, I really enjoyed the vast majority of the prompts. There was the occasional prompt that just didn't apply to me personally, but even those gave me a reason to think about why they didn't apply to me. I did manage to finish it by the end of the year. I found the prompts intriguing and the exercise fulfilling. I imagine The 52 Lists Project: A Year of Weekly Journaling Inspiration might just become a gift I'll give again and again. I enjoyed it so much I also bought her new journaling book to work through this year.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

2,100 Asanas: The Complete Yoga Poses by Daniel Lacerda

2,100 Asanas: The Complete Yoga Poses by Daniel Lacerda offers a way to better understand myriad yoga poses and the variations thereof. The photos of each pose are accompanied with information about each pose. The information sometimes feels a bit underdeveloped, but the photos are fantastic. I discovered ways to modify a couple of poses I'd been struggling to do correctly in ways that moved me closer to the pose I wanted to do. The variations and the illustrations are helpful. He even offers a pronunciation guide for the poses Sanskrit names. I enjoyed this book. In spite of it's length, it's a fairly quick read as much of the book is made up of photos. I think this is a book anyone who practices yoga would find value in. It's the kind of book I'll keep on my shelves as a reference book for whenever I'm struggling with a pose.


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz

Sometimes a book comes along that makes you re-think your very existence, your history, everything you think you know about your place in the world. An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz raised all those questions in my heart, mind, and soul. An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States made me look at every history class I've ever taken through a different lens. Dunbar-Ortiz writes an engaging history that reminds us that whenever we declare people "enemy" we often strip them of their humanity in order to justify our own horrendous actions, from internment camps to genocide, while writing ourselves simultaneously as the victims and the heroes. I wish I had the power to make An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States required reading, but I'll have to settle for recommending it to everyone I know and even people I don't know.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Leaves of Grass (1855 Edition) by Walt Whitman

I'm not sure what I expected when I started reading Leaves of Grass (1855 Edition) by Walt Whitman, but I found myself surprised as I read. His language was reflective of his time but felt a bit unrefined in places, which at times was refreshing and at others uncomfortable. His prejudices, in line with the times in which he lived, shined forth in some passages. His use of imagery and language to express the nature of life and living offers a sense of connection and contradiction that pushed me to think and to feel connected to the world he described even when I resisted. Whitman observed and recorded the world around him in a way that gives the reader a glimpse into that world as he saw it and moved through it in Leaves of Grass.