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TagsTheater (41), Biography (37), Philosophy (26), Music (19), World Literature (American) (15), Autobiography (15), Flight (14), Psychology (13), Theater & Film (11), Performing Arts (10) — see all tags
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About meGraduating high school in Nebraska at seventeen, I enlisted in the Marine Corps for two years at the tail end of the Korean War, before going to college and then on to Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Virginia. After ordination into the diaconate and the priesthood, I spent six years in the parish ministry of the Episcopal Church of Florida, before moving to Atlanta, where, though still a priest, I was granted permission to work secularly while undertaking a doctoral program that combined my four primary fields of interest (philosophy, psychology, theater, and religion). Galvanized first in 1974 by a phone conversation with and eventual meeting of Jonas Salk; next, right on its heels, came my personal encounter with the ground-breaking achievements in Formative Psychology found in both the work and person of Stanley Keleman. My doctoral project as well as my professional life, was immediately affected by the ground-breaking work being done by both men. As a direct result, my project was significantly expanded in its conceptual scope as well as deepened in its substantive content. Its aim was restated to become: "to develop a fresh approach to human experience" -- which also stretched it from the expected two or three years into seven. (The specifics of this program are set out in some detail on the second page ("the human realm") of my website at the Authors Guild, which is listed below as my homepage.) With my interest in each field being equal in strength to that of the others, I chose to pursue all four fields to the maximum extent: Philosophy, Psychology, Theater, Religion -- thereby risking diffusion rather than undertaking a deliberate diversion. What might have otherwise remained a handful of hobbies subsequently metamorphosed into full-fledged occupational endeavors, each of which continues to flourish to this day. I am a professional actor, playwright/composer with a doctorate in psychology, philosopher, and ordained Episcopal priest. Since 1968, I have made my home in greater Atlanta, but remain a native son of the sweeping plains and prairies out west where I grew up . . . and see myself as a student of life, fellow-seeker of the truth, and citizen of the world.
About my libraryWhen is a book more than a book? When it's in a library that opens out onto the world.
Taken with Library Thing's concept, I began resurrecting my library from season upon season of its languishing in storage. At first, it seemed fifty to a hundred carefully selected books would jump-start a sufficient connection between me and my books, and after so many years, serve to get the current flowing as before. What I failed to foresee was what sparks such as these would generate and set in motion. Picture, if you will, the undersea site of some huge sunken ship (out of respect, not the Titanic, but something equally huge left largely intact). What I'd unwittingly devolved into over the recurring cycles of years was akin to making occasional salvage runs to find and, if lucky, retrieve items thought to be there. Now envision also, that as the initial connecting sparks flashed and energy returned to encrusted lines and cables, the engines revived, lights flickered and came back on, gears creaked as they moved haltingly, and gigantic rusty shafts turned and began to drive; and instead of only the tiny search vehicle bubbling its way back from the dark depths beneath it, the whole ship arose drifting upward, broke through the waves on the surface of the sea, and started to sail once more. That is what finding LT has been like for me.
Surprisingly . . . what has emerged is a library of thirteen sections, reconfiguring itself in this way: I. Theater & Film: The largest single section of the library standing, it is drawn from over sixty years of direct involvement in theater, first through mainly acting in plays, and later through writing them as well -- which carries over into the present with five musical theater pieces as current works-in-progress (see p.2, entitled "The Human Realm," of my homesite at the Authors Guild for the plot synopses of these); II. Science & History: Traditional and self-explanatory, these volumes reflect the customary divisions of the major scientific disciplines and fields of study.; III. Language, Literature & Literary Arts: Authors arranged alphabetically, starting with Anna Akhmatova and running through W.B. Yeats, with a few select anthologies inserted; IV. Reference Works: Dictionaries, Grammars, Usage books, Encyclopedias, Lexicons, and the likes thereof; V. Philosophy: Since it was my major as an undergraduate, the whole tree is largely represented here with its many intertwining branches; VI. Cultural Literacy: A wide-ranging series of books encapsulating expansively, though not glibly, "Cultures, Countries, and Critters." Though most biographies are found here arranged alphabetically, they are cataloged as the tripartite collection Biographies, Autobiographies, & Memoirs, with individual volumes interspersed in their originating fields and housed there when appropriate). The main language-learning programs and volumes in my library are German, Spanish, and Italian -- in addition to Greek and Hebrew for Biblical studies. And, because of its having long since transcended national boundaries, thus influencing languages and cultures far beyond its own, the full Shakespearian canon, coupled with commentaries and tomes of every sort (the Bevington version, for example), form a veritable "village" of culture-clusters residing here. (NOTE: An example of an entry in the 'Critters' category would be Seabiscuit, done with full equine honors and a ceremony in the winner's circle, of course.); VII. A. Bible, Religion, & Spirituality: (Three times the size of any standing section of the library, which, though "backstacked" in several storage boxes, keeps incrementally inching its way onto the expanding entries of my developing LT catalog.) Old & New Testament, translations of Scriptures and attendant relevant writings -- with source texts in Greek and Hebrew, amplified by extensive commentaries on these -- influence of Greek ideas on Christianity, history of religions, history of Christianity, liturgical worship, forming of the Church as an institutional entity and historical reality, and in the primary theological and practicing religious traditions found over several historical periods, right up to modern times, along with the other religions of the world; B. Psychology & Psychotherapy: (primarily as developed in Europe and the U.S from the 19th Century to the present), the brain, higher cortical functioning, major schools of psychology, psychotherapy, counseling, et al; VIII. The Sixties And All That: A widely varied collection ranging over the extensive issues and events of the late 60's, with its reverberations rippling into the decades that followed; IX. A. Anatomy & Physiology: Form and Function of the living human organism, Fitness, Exercise, Health, Nutrition, and its nurturing inwardly and outwardly; B. Formative Psychology: A particularly distinct, solidly grounded, pervasive approach in a class by itself -- consisting principally of the pioneering work founded by Stanley Keleman, including his fourteen years of work collaborating with Joseph Campbell (whose related writings on mythology are appropriately housed here); X. Music: Major Classical Western composers, from opera at its inception, then metamorphosing into operetta in Europe and spreading to the U.S., where it blossomed into full-blown Musical Theater, merging with Jazz, big bands, popular, rock, and so on up to now. Also contains: use of voice, and vocal development (all three registers), in singing as well as in acting onstage, and in the other performing arts in radio, recordings, film, and television; XI. Native Americans, the Great Plains, and the West: A large collection of books (many are oversize books bearing lush photos of land, sky, and rivers, with graphic foldouts of vast territorial, up to the time of the Lewis and Clarke Expedition (1804-1806) and concentrating heavily on the region from then on); XII. Flight: Aeronautical & Astronomical (Space). Applied principles of soaring, aircraft (vintage and modern), and rocketry; XIII. Multimedia & Audio-Visual Section: Some sixty years worth of vinyl records, audio-tapes, CD's, VHS cassettes, and DVD's.
(So then, these are my rescued books as of now, with three-fourths still to be cataloged, the greater portion of which have all been read. Most of them have survived a raging fire and later a flooding among those in the lowest shelves, leaving signs of what they went through scorched or watermarked upon them; and which, since I hand-scan each book individually, can clearly be seen if you peer closely at their covers displayed here. Were you able to look inside them, you'd find the pages of most sprinkled with lines or margin notes running throughout, as well as on the pages available at extreme front and back. It's a rudimentary "retrieval system" that pairs any notation with its page numbers, enabling me to readily locate and retrieve the passages and points that particularly stood out.)
May your own endeavors prosper here in whatever you hope they bring your way. And a toast to Library Thing! As Zorba might have put it, "Hey, Boss . . . have you ever seen a more splendiferous cloud!?" -G.R.
Creator/Administrator of the following groups at Library Thing: Gateways into the world, and the human realm: Experiencing . . . , working closely with Stanley Keleman (prominently featured in and throughout my second book) in a further elaboration of his oeuvre in Formative Psychology as it has grown to fruition from its early days in the 1970s right on up to now, and also The Artistic Endeavor, for those interested or working in the arts. (The linking blog to all these groups is www.sensingtheway.com. It is the 'Grand Central Station' of my sites, and has a "main train blog" that runs between them all to keep them up to date -- with both www.gatewaysintotheworld.com and www.prairywriter.com (entitled "Out Where The Big Waves Are") and their articles treating individuals of world-renown -- and finally, as the train's caboose, the most wide-ranging and recent one of them all, "The Splendor of Human Seasons") -- with the two domains that are my chief professional work sites being readied at Yahoo. The reason for housing these LT-connected endeavors at WordPress is the ease with which media-enhanced renderings can be further developed there. (A quick glance at Sensing the Way's "To Begin!" page, with its full array of video clips, gives a clear indication of just how and why this is so.)
As an integral part of the whole network, my Library Thing profile always carries notifications of what is going on in it elsewhere as well.
All of my sites, blogs, and professional pages were fashioned into a unified online network for the first time on September 5, 2012 . . . and the site 'the human realm' (originating from the second page of my homesite at the Authors Guild), currently under construction at Yahoo, will be added to the rest of these by the end of this summer.
RECENT NETWORK POSTINGS (at Authors Guild, WordPress, GoodReads, Amazon's Authors Central, and elsewhere). ON KAZANTZAKIS, SAINT-EXUPÉRY, AND AMELIA EARHART: Though Kazantzakis's life and works must be taken together to reflect all they contain, it's important to set apart these two from the combustible controversy -- which, after a bitter seven-year battle in the Greek courts, was decided in favor of his wife Eleni's claim along with that of her adopted son. The Kazantzakis group at Library Thing bears the same name as the title of that blog's initial posting, "The Arresting Life & Writings of Nikos Kazantzakis (with an incidental review of his Report To Greco)." The second article on the same blog recounts a still-vivid recollection of my meeting Eleni at her home on 32 Avenue William Favre in Geneva on a sun-filled afternoon at the end of summer in 1988. The third article, "The Fresh Biographical Works of Stacy Schiff" will touch on how Schiff goes about her task in the often arid reaches of rigorous biographical writing. These three postings will be followed by condensed reviews of the two matchless biographies: NIKOS KAZANTZAKIS: A Biography Based On His Letters, by Eleni Kazantzakis, and SAINT-EXUPÉRY: A Biography, by Stacy Schiff. These, and the next pair, also biographies, will open with a piece entitled "The Lingering Effects Left By The Lives Of Those Who Vanish", (summarizing half-a-dozen books on both Saint-Exupéry and Amelia Earhart, followed by another pair on Marlene Dietrich, and books on other figures yet to come.)
January, 2013. (ANNOUNCEMENT: A limited-engagement show at the Alliance Theatre took place in January of Noel Coward's STILL LIFE, which was made into the 1945 film Brief Encounter, starring Celia Johnson and Trevor Howard.)
The article on Nikos Kazantzakis is at Word Press and was also posted by Εκδόσεις Καζαντζάκη - Kazantzakis Publications in Athens, Greece (whose ongoing cooperation and support helps to make this possible). A link to the complete article along with its full printed-text is found at LibraryThing on the Kazantzakis group page. This group is open to any who wish to take part. As the WordPress blog continues to roll out the other articles already referred to, on the new blog "The Splendor of the Human Seasons" put in place yesterday, and construction can now commence on "the human realm: Experiencing ..." as the major remaining activity in this personal network of ongoing sites. (For online discussion activity, here's a portion of an exchange on a Goodreads group dealing with books made into movies: http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/346310-literary-films-set-between-1900-1945?...). For those seriously ready for a state-of-the-art online learning group, the "full Monty" can be found at The History Book Club: http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/286841-about-us---the-history-book-club. It has seven moderators, more divisions and threads than you can shake a stick at, and helpful detailed segments on procedures for posting and participating. Begun in 2008 as a private group, it has since grown into a sprawling state-of-the-art operation with genuine facilitation by its moderators at every point! If you take a look at it, you'll probably come away surprised!
Meanwhile, the rest of my personal web activities move ahead: with the aforementioned articles on Eleni Kazantzakis, Saint-Exupéry and Amelia Earhart can proceed, as can the cataloging of the "Tillich shelf," on the philosophical theologian Paul Tillich (1886-1965), and be completed, allowing then for the subsequent reviewing of each of them (at least 25 books!) along with the recently posted: Paul Tillich: His Life & Thought, Vol. 1: Life… by Wilhelm & Marion Pauck, entitled, "Putting Into Words The Life Of A Man Of Thought".
MONDAY, October 21, 2013 --G. Ruyle
Groups18th-19th Century Britain, A Pearl of Wisdom and Enlightenment, A Quieter LibraryThing, Actors Who LibraryThing, ADAPTATIONS: From Book to Movie, into Play, Musical, and More, African/African American Literature, Algonquin Readers Round Table, All the World's a Stage, American Civil War, American History —show all groups, American Postmodernism, analytic philosophy, Ancient History, Anglophiles, Arab, North African and Middle Eastern Literature, Archaeologists, Archaeology, Art is Life, Atlanta Bibliophiles, Australian LibraryThingers, Author and venue pictures, Author Theme Reads, BBC Radio 3 Listeners, Biblical History, Biographies, Memoirs and Autobiographies, Boats and Sailing, Book reviewers, Books on Books, Books that made me think, Booksellers, Bostonians, Byzantinistik, Canadian Bookworms, Catholic Tradition, Christianity, Classical Music, Club der toten Denker, Club Read 2011, Cognitive Science, Collaborative work, Deep South, Elizabethan England, English majors!, Everyman's Library, Evolution, Evolve!, Existentialism, Faith and Reason, Fans of Russian authors, Final Frontier - Spaceflight, Fine Press Forum, Finnish Librarythingers, Folio Society devotees, Gateways Into The World, Geeks who love the Classics, German Library Thingers, German literature and poetry, Happy Heathens, History Fans, History of the Book, History Readers: Clio's (Pleasure?) Palace, History: On learning from and writing history, Homer, the Trojan war, and pre-classical Greece, I Survived the Great Vowel Shift, In Translation, Italians - Italiani, Kindley Book Club, Language, Legacy Libraries, Let's Talk Religion, Library of America Subscribers, Lutheran Group, Mark Twain, Medieval Europe, Midwest Writers/Readers, Military History, Monks, Monasteries and Monasticism, Monthly Author Reads, Nabokov!, Nature Lit, Neuroscience, Nobel Laureates in Literature, Non-Fiction Readers, Opera, or Nobody Knows the Traubel I've Seen, Persephone Readers, Philosophy and Theory, Philosophy of Science, Poetry Fool, Political Philosophy, Proust, Psychology, Readers Over Sixty, Reading Globally, Religion Studies, Rock 'n' Roll, Records and Record Collections, Science!, Second World War History, Skeptic's book club, The Arresting Life & Writings Of Nikos Kazantzakis, The Federalist Papers, The Globe, The Green Dragon, the human realm: Experiencing . . ., The Teaching Company, Travel and Exploration literature, Underappreciated Books and Authors, Urban Romantics, William Faulkner and his Literary Kin, Wir Philologen, Writer-readers
Favorite authorsAnna Akhmatova, Steven Bach, Samuel Beckett, Saul Bellow, Walter Benjamin, Nikolai Berdyaev, Sven Birkerts, Joseph Brodsky, Jacob Bronowski, Jerome Bruner, Robert Brustein, Martin Buber, James Cagney, Elias Canetti, Ernst Cassirer, Constantine Cavafy, Dick Cavett, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Erwin Chargaff, Anton Chekhov, Harold Clurman, Joseph Conrad, Jill Ker Conway, Noël Coward, E.E. Cummings, Charles Darwin, Annie Dillard, Desiderius Erasmus, Oriana Fallaci, Theodor Fontane, Sigmund Freud, José Ortega y Gasset, Ira Gershwin, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Erving Goffman, William Goldman, Frederick C. Grant, Vasily Grossman, Jim Harrison, Moss Hart, William Least Heat-Moon, Erich Heller, Robert Henri, Hermann Hesse, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, Victor Hugo, Karl Jaspers, Sidney M. Jourard, Tony Judt, Elia Kazan, Helen Kazantzakis, Nikos Kazantzakis, Alfred Kazin, Sam Keen, Stanley Keleman, Søren Kierkegaard, Hans Küng, Arthur Laurents, Gene Lees, Karl Mannheim, Thomas Mann, Gabriel García Márquez, Floyd W. Matson, Czesław Miłosz, Michel de Montaigne, James Muilenburg, Robert Musil, Pablo Neruda, Friedrich Nietzsche, Pascal, Fritz Perls, Rainer Maria Rilke, Marilynne Robinson, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, William Saroyan, Stacy Schiff, Harold C. Schonberg, William Shakespeare, George Bernard Shaw, John D. Sheridan, Constantin Stanislavski, Paul Tillich, Ivan Turgenev, Mark Twain, Kenneth Tynan, Miguel de Unamuno, Simone Weil, Walt Whitman, Ludwig Wittgenstein, P. G. Wodehouse, Irvin D. Yalom (Shared favorites)
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Membership LibraryThing Early Reviewers/Member Giveaway
Real nameGene Ruyle
LocationAtlanta, Georgia (U.S.A.)
Account typepublic, lifetime
Member sinceMar 6, 2011
Currently readingThe Sound of Wings: The Life of Amelia Earhart by Mary S. Lovell
Amelia Earhart: The Turbulent Life of an American Icon by Kathleen C. Winters
East to the Dawn: The Life of Amelia Earhart by Susan Butler
Véra (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov) by Stacy Schiff
Fathers and Sons (Barnes & Noble Classics) by Ivan Turgenev
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