Friday essay: the legend of Ishtar, first goddess of love and war

This is a fascinating account of the earliest goddess of war and love. It is also tells that the first recorded poet was a Enheduanna a priestess of the Moon God thought to have lived in Ur about 2300 BC. Love and war, creation and destruction, that pretty much covers it.

It is a great article, please read.

Love, it is said, is a battlefield, and it was no more so than for the first goddess of love and war, Ishtar. Her legend has influenced cultural archetypes from Aphrodite to Wonder Woman.

Source: Friday essay: the legend of Ishtar, first goddess of love and war

I thought the statue “Fearless Girl” an appropriate visual here. Not yet a goddess although impressive and confronting.


Fearless Girl: Shinya Suzuki/Flickr

 

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Being Busy Permanently Reduces Your Capacity to Think Deeply and Creatively | Big Think

This article suggests we need to “chill out’ if we value creativity. My view is that that is correct. Too much worry and stress, too much business kills you, as a human, a member of society and as a creative person. This article explores the impact of business on creativity and what to do about it.

This is the authors recipe for change

“1. Make a long walk—without your phone—a part of your daily routine
2. Get out of your comfort zone
3. Make more time for fun and games
4. Alternate between doing focused work and activities that are less intellectually demanding”

Here’s why you should try to fit less—not more—into each day.

Source: Being Busy Permanently Reduces Your Capacity to Think Deeply and Creatively | Big Think

From: Andris on FLICKR

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Lucy Hone: In defence of introverts | Stuff.co.nz

Extroversion isn’t the Holy Grail of functioning.

I found this article positive and encouraging given how much I enjoy my own company. An important message to share. Being an introvert is a good thing. Its great. We need to encourage and support introverts; and tell extroverts to be quiet, and listen.

Source: Lucy Hone: In defence of introverts | Stuff.co.nz

It is interesting to me that I chose this picture rather than a musician practising, or a writer writing. When I walk it is mostly with Helena (my wife) and Bart (our dog).

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Want To Innovate? Science Says, Be Curious! | The Creativity Post

This is a BIG piece on curiosity. Give yourself 20 minutes to read this. It is worth the time.

I’m serious, I’ve read this three or four times looking to summarise or paraphrase the material but there is so much here.

An eight step outline: identify and remove limits to curiosity, question (my favourite skill), become interesting by connecting with your sense of wonder, open yourself to new ideas and adventures, go deep, build encouraging and deep relationships, play, and live and work with enquiring minds.

That’s just the outline. Each section has five to ten bullet action points.

My summary: Question, dance and act.

Kea Toa Kea Ngakaunui

At first glance, curiosity seems annoying because it can make a task take longer. A closer look can reveal how the extra time curiosity takes can make the task more rewarding and the outcome more unique.

Source: Want To Innovate? Science Says, Be Curious! | The Creativity Post

From FLICKR Pima Aditya

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Why forests and rivers are the most potent health tonic around | Aeon Essays

It is Sunday morning and I’m stressing with the thought of work to do and all that… But before I go to work, I’m walking with Helena (my wife) and the dog, and posting here.

Do the important things first!

The idea that immersing yourself in forests and nature has a healing effect is far more than just folk wisdom

Source: Why forests and rivers are the most potent health tonic around | Aeon Essays

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Sciblogs | The Story Collider Has Been

I attended the Story Collider workshop on Thursday at Victoria University in Wellington, and I’m excited that I did. I learned heaps and it was wonderful just to sit in a room with thirty other passionate science tellers.

Thanks SCANZ for organising this. Liz Neely lead us; she is a passionate, effective and evidence base speaker. Wonderful.

If you could not get to the workshops there is a recorded presentation from an earlier workshop here (Science Communication – The Power of Storytelling https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DhCfqZDQSQI) and a great list of podcasts here (https://www.storycollider.org/podcasts/).

Thanks again SCANZ and Scienceblogs for organising and advertising the meetings.

Ngā mihi maioha

The Science Communicators Association of New Zealand (SCANZ) wants to hear your story during a special live show with The Story Collider.

The Story Collider has been bringing true, personal stories about science to life both through our many live shows as well as our weekly podcast, and we’ve used what we’ve learned about science and stories to teach scientists to use narrative in our university and corporate workshop program.

Source: Sciblogs | The Story Collider is Coming

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The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot. Robert MacFarlane

In my twenties is spent many happy weekends walking in a tramping club, although I consider my walking solid, it is nothing like that Robert MacFarlane has achieved. Walks across the ancient ways of England, and in Spain and Israel; he tells the tales of his wandering with thought and passion. Much more than a travelogue, he writes his thoughts, the history and the ways of life. There is so much he tells use.

I was particularly struck by how far we used to walk: between villages, regularly; across districts, occasionally; and across continents and sea-ways, as required. We are a dispersed species and much of this dispersion was on foot. But that is lost now as sedentary habits are the norm.

There is much more than this, please read this book.

This book reminds me that we can walk; must walk. Go on, get up, be active!

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Antares: astronomers capture best ever image of a star’s surface and atmosphere | Science | The Guardian

I’m just amazed by this; awesome and so beautful!

Pictures of red supergiant Antares, 550 light years from Earth, are the most detailed images even taken of a star other than the sun

Source: Antares: astronomers capture best ever image of a star’s surface and atmosphere | Science | The Guardian

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What I have discovered this week: Science Writers and Magic lessons

Three times a year between terms I find myself dreaming a passion for science story telling. I love the stories, I’m a PhD in science and a teacher, but I seek to learn and do more. But, how? This week I have found two useful resources: a whole section from The Guardian 2014 on science writing and Elizabth Gilbert’s Magic lessons for unblocking and exploring creativity. Both are excellent, practical and fire me up to write.

I recommend them both.

https://www.theguardian.com/science/series/secrets-science-writing

http://www.maximumfun.org/shows/magic-lessons

The scale of the Universe is impossible to imagine (Credit: Denys Bilytskyi/Alamy


Continue reading

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The Joy Of Science : 13.7: Cosmos And Culture : NPR

This is just so… cool.

A paper exploring the consistency and makeup of Saturn’s moon Titan brings joy with discovery as we learn about our universe of wonders, says astrophysicist Adam Frank.

Source: The Joy Of Science : 13.7: Cosmos And Culture : NPR

infrared view of Saturn’s moon Titan from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft

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