Please indulge me in a little self reflection.
It’s after Labor Day. Does that mean summer is over? To me, yes. Even if it’s still hot. We always went back to school after Labor Day when I was a kid, and for me that will eternally be the marker that ends the summer season. So now what?
I am going back to school, too. I have been working on my Lithuanian a little bit every day since I got back from my trip, but now I am making it an official part of the day. I am doing the same with writing exercises. I am going to somehow take 2 hours of my day and spend 1 hour on Lithuanian and 1 hour on writing — as courses, not for work projects. I am going to select a new, special place for studying and I am going to go there 5 days a week — Monday to Friday — just as if it were a real school. A few years ago, I had time to go to German classes 3 times a week for 3 hour classes, so there’s no reason I can’t fit this into my schedule now. Real classes may be better because you have to show up and put your butt in the seat and pay attention, but I can do that on my own if I make a plan. There are no Lithuanian classes taught in Colorado and there are no writing classes where you just work on exercises and play.
I am going to use the book Sing Me The Creation by Paul Matthews as my writing text. A new friend from Poland loaned me a copy of this book while I was in Vilnius and I just love it. It’s not a book I would have bought on my own. I don’t think it’s on the shelves of many American book stores, first. And second the author uses a lot of Christian references and, as you probably have noticed if you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, I am not a Christian. The thing is, even though I am basically a materialist or naturalist in my views, I believe there is a spiritual dimension to the human experience, and I am very interested in how we can develop spiritually, even in the absence of supernatural forces. I’ve also noticed that many of the people I am most attracted to, the people I find most interesting, the people who touch something deep in my own “soul,” are people who are also interested in spiritual growth. What does that even mean to those of us who don’t believe in gods or spirits or even souls? For me it means I believe that intelligence and culture and language and emotion and art give humans the ability to experience life on a level that is not available to most creatures, and that we can grow beyond our evolutionary limitations by using this new level of consciousness and we can use some of the language of religion metaphorically to express these ideas, because no other language of spirituality has (yet) been developed. Or something like that.
That’s enough for today. I have a lot of work to do but I hope to write (and think) more on these subjects in the coming weeks.
Cross posted on my personal blog.