At the end of her best-selling memoir Eat, Pray, Love, Elizabeth Gilbert fell in love with Felipe, a Brazilian-born man of Australian citizenship who'd been living in Indonesia when they met. Resettling in America, the couple swore eternal fidelity to each other, but also swore to never, ever, under any circumstances get legally married. But providence intervened one day in the form of the United States government....
I wasn't the biggest fan of Eat, Pray, Love - and whether or not that was the case for you - please do not let that stop you from picking up this book if you are thinking about marriage or are already married. This was a wonderful listen, with just the right amount of history and research about the Institution (marriage that is) and personal anecdotes sprinkled throughout. Fascinating was Gilbert's discovery of a book called Subversion (chapter 7), a rather interesting text that claims marriage is actually revolution on a micro level - that while the ruling class has been trying to control the individual, they have never been able to control the almost universal impulse to cohabitate in pairs and get married. What goes on in the marital bed, the secret pillow talks, the shared intimacy, the privacy of a relationship - all of these are threats to those that want to control. This decision to choose one person, above all others, to share your life with is a personal revolution that will on some level, said or unsaid, upset family, friends, and anyone else with an agenda against you. This CONCEPT is revolutionary, and really appealed to the rebel within. And perhaps, for someone like me who never much liked the Institution in the first place, is just the kind of thing I needed to hear.
That being said, there's plenty said in the book against marriage - particularly for women. Less happiness, lower life expectancy, and if you happened to live in the 19th century a nifty legal concept called Coverture - whereupon marriage, a woman's legal rights ceased to exist. When you consider today's typical prenuptial agreement, especially in the case of the disadvantaged party (which often is the woman), not much has changed. Its maddening.
Another interesting tidbit, especially in light of the Pope's recent comments - Christianity has only very recently been a proponent of marriage - and only once the powers that be realized they could not stop people from cohabitating and marrying did this come to be. Originally celibacy & non marriage were heavily encouraged. If you can't beat em, join em, I guess.
Elaine Pagels explores the surprising history of the most controversial book of the Bible. In the waning days of the Roman Empire, militant Jews in Jerusalem had waged anall-out war against Rome’s occupation of Judea, and their defeat resulted in the desecration of the Great Temple in Jerusalem. In the aftermath of that war, John of Patmos, a Jewish prophet and follower of Jesus, wrote the Book of Revelation, prophesying God’s judgment on the pagan empire that devastated and dominated his people.
I was looking for a book that could potentially explain Revelations, so I was a little disappointed, yet curious, when I realized this book was more about the political context related to the writing and inclusion of Revelations in the bible. Still, it is very interesting stuff, especially the part about "secret books" of the bible. Will certainly be looking up the gnostic gospels in the future. Worth a listen for context sake.
Despite constant efforts to declutter your home, do papers still accumulate like snowdrifts and clothes pile up like a tangled mess of noodles?Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes tidying to a whole new level, promising that if you properly simplify and organize your home once, you'll never have to do it again. Most methods advocate a room-by-room or little-by-little approach, which doom you to pick away at your piles of stuff forever.
Some of the things Kondo suggests are pretty ridiculous and impractical- that said the biggest two take aways for me were don't keep anything that doesn't bring you joy and try to tidy up all at once, in one great effort- otherwise you'll be trying to tidy up for life. I enjoyed the narration and even the silly things were so out there as to be entertaining (like, don't roll up socks into angry balls, let them rest and, talk to your objects and thank them for service). Kondo really believes objects are alive in some sense and encourages us to act as if they are (are my purses happy to be stored here?) A few parts sounded like Things an OCD person would do (NEVER keep shampoo bottles in the bath area, always store them in cupboard and clean bottle everytime after use, NEVER buy in bulk, immediately throw out any overstock even if it seems wasteful). Unfortunately the silly advice was more plentiful than the practical so I have to give it three stars.
157 of 185 people found this review helpful
This is a summary and analysis of the book and not the original book. Marie Kondo is a Japanese consultant specializing in tidying. In The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Kondo shares her simple method of tidying along with a wealth of insights into clutter, including what causes it and what types exist. Kondo also shares her own personal history and how that history led her to develop and refine her tidying method, referred to throughout the book as the KonMari Method.
I didn't feel enough was provided in this summary, at least nothing that could not be gleaned from the books own summary available on Amazon for free. I expected a pared down, no fluff version of the exact tidying method that I could use to get started while I listen to the actual audiobook of the real book. This book just reiterated the bits you'd already know from reading a few reviews on Amazon and the book's own summary. Skip it.
22 of 23 people found this review helpful