May 26, 2012

Calligraphy, Words and Truth

Finally relaxing after last teaching week is over, sitting in a skirt and short sleeve top, enjoying the warm air with all windows wide open; it feels as hot as if I'm back in Israel.
Although I am not really allowed to relax yet - there's a lot more to do... the students' tests from last week need to be corrected urgently of course although I have to say that the students I met in the hallway were extremely polite and sweet about their results... "um, have you had the chance...?" Well, since I have just taught them to be more polite, formal and tentative in their writing, they seem to have absorbed the lesson well! Which motivates me even more to get them their grades ASAP. But without stress. Because stress leads to unhappiness which is something that we in the Western world have the privilege of demanding and expecting less of in our lives. (sorry about all the double negatives)...
I was still a little stressed after checking out the Folia magazine after attending Maike Boots' Japanese Calligraphy lesson on Thursday where I bumped into a journalist for their paper. Reading through the article I wondered how so much unrelated information could come from a simple lesson on Japanese brush strokes... I saw my name mentioned in the article and tried to remember if I had said the words that were accredited to me. I am a big defender of democracy and freedom of the press, but it is so interesting how many perspectives and interpretations can be given to almost anything at all. 
So, last but not least, as I tell my students, don't forget to read critically anything you read anywhere, no matter how 'neutral' and objective the media seems to be... Always look at the facts, observe first, and explain or judge later...

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