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Hi, I'm Odile, a historical linguist from the Netherlands who also likes to write about music, games, and history. Check out my longer blog posts and other writings on Sub Specie.

Currently reading

Signs: an Introduction to Semiotics
Thomas A. Sebeok, Marcel Danesi
Language and Space
Lynn Nadel, Mary A. Peterson, Paul Bloom

Star Maker (SF Masterworks)

Star Maker (SF Masterworks) - Olaf Stapledon 'Star Maker' moved me. Written in the late 1930's, Stapledon was perhaps a bit ahead of his time, or at least, it seems at least as relevant today as it must have been back then.

I would describe the book as a creation myth for the secular age. It is a mystical and spiritual story for those of us who believe in science, and not in a personal God in the tradition of traditional faith, yet who are spiritual seekers all the same.

Based on the astronomical knowledge of the time, Stapledon paints a sweeping picture of the creation of the universe, the development of life on an ever-growing scale, the birth and death of stars, the arising of planetary and galactic consciousness. Though conjectural - it is a myth, after all - much of what Stapledon imagines conforms to scientific ideas of astronomy and biological evolution, even by today's standards, as far as I can judge.

More importantly, this is one of those precious books that speak to the heart and the mind at the same time, in an age where the former is often neglected by those writing for the latter.