How to Take Notes: From a Textbook

Statics and Stationery

This method is best suited for textbook or article notes, and is a version of revised notes. It is also well suited for books you plan on returning to the bookstore or books you have rented, as it does not involve writing directly in the book itself.

First, you’ll need to find a notebook, and the pens you like the best. My favorite notebooks to work with for note-taking, especially for my “revised” notes, are the Moleskine, hard or soft cover, in size extra large. For this specific class (Intro to Gender and Women’s Studies), I decided that lined pages would suit my needs better. For my math, engineering, and science classes, I usually opt for squared paper, as I draw in lots of diagrams and graphs.

My favorite pens ever are Staedtler Triplus Fineliners, so even though they show through the pages a little bit, I still choose to…

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Kids these days get too much praise: Praise, validation, and encouragement

Book of Jubilation

For part of my graduate training at therapist school, I did a counselling internship in a university student resource centre. It’s an interesting experience to fall back on, especially when people start ragging on millennials for being lazy and self-satisfied. The students that I saw were overwhelmingly workaholics who felt pressured to sacrifice everything at the altar of academic success—and they were resistant to being told that completely forgoing sleep, a social life, leisure time, and adequate nutrition actually made them less likely to succeed. I came away thinking that there is a deep sickness in the root of my generation’s soul, and this is what it looks like: To be imperfect is to be inadequate. If you are not an extraordinary success, you are an utter failure.

And overwhelmingly, the students I saw—bright, accomplished, high-achieving people—were obsessed with the thought that they were lazy, stupid, and untalented. Impostor syndrome

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Fantasy’s Othering Fetish, Part 1

Media Diversified

By Phenderson Djeli Clark

This is Part 1 of a three-part series.

Over the years demands for more meaningful diversity in our fantasy realms have grown increasingly louder–a clarion call that echoes from the mundane world to haunt our usual lands of elves, dragons, orcs and whatnot. Back in 2010 when local New Zealanders were told they were “too dark to be a Hobbit” (no one’s ever too dark to be an Orc, it seems) in the new Peter Jackson films it caused a stir, highlighting the at times “unbearable whiteness” of the heroes of Tolkien’s masterpiece. Both Pixar’s Brave and Disney’s Frozen were criticized for their similar ode to all things vanilla, without even attempting a hint at color.

Diversity in fantasy has been thrust into the spotlight due to author George RR Martin’s popular A Song of Ice and Fire saga, which has been adapted as the…

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Scientific views on daily rituals (KRT)

Kemetische Einsichten

Kemetic Round TableI have decided to wander off the topic a bit for this post and take you on a little trip into neurology, psychology and sociology.

To watch people performing rituals can look very strange if you do not know the background and the meanings behind them. It might even look funny, scary or just confusing. Experiencing different cultures can sometimes force us to deal with habits we find hard to relate to. A socialist brother’s kiss can seem odd to western minds like it can be obnoxious to Muslims if a catholic woman does not cover her hair. It can look brutal if indigenous people in Africa pierce their lips with spits of wood for initiation ceremonies like it will probably seem weird to them to watch a typical German marriage. The latest discussions about circumcision in Judaism have shown clearly how heated a debate can get about maintaing a…

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When the Night Has Come

It’s been a long time, so this entry is titled after the old classic, “Stand By Me”. I’m finishing up my undergraduate degree in the next couple months, so this is probably all y’all will see from me until June. It’s still a declaration of intent to resume blogging on the topic of religion, though. Commence the jazzy singing and swaying.

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Loki and Women

Weaving the Net

This post is based on and inspired by Sati’s wonderful post about Seth and Women (in German).

Loki, the “Unmanly” Man

If you worship Loki — especially if you’re female while doing so — you’ll quickly be finding yourself battling prejudice based on the clichéd immature, hormone-driven teenager; or alternatively, the clichéd oversexed while underfucked aging single woman. According to cliché, you only have the hots for a particular part of Loki’s — the part that you usually find roughly in the middle of the male body, to be precise. If you stop to think about it, however, this is rather odd: in fact as far as we know from extant sources, Loki and His sexuality are not as clear-cut for Him to easily lend themselves interpretation as a sex symbol.

Imagine a time and culture where ergi — that is, the accusation of unmanliness and cowardice, that is always…

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An environmentalist interpretation of the binding of Loki

Rebalancing Acts

This has been hanging around in the back of my mind for about a year now. I took a crack at a draft earlier this year, to get some of my thoughts down; that draft has been sent to join its ancestors.

I was thinking over the Lokasenna, and the myth about Loki’s binding, and the various players in that myth, and I realized that another way of looking at it is about civilization’s attitude towards nature.

The Aesir are commonly seen as gods of civilization, whereas Loki is not only a Jotun, from the part of the pantheon where deities are aligned with primal natural forces and phenomena, He is (among other things) a god of change, which is one of the most fundamental natural forces there is. While there are other Jotnar who are accepted among the Aesir, Loki never seems to be as fully accepted among this…

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