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Lady Aquila

Jun 24, 05 - 12:48 PM
A Visit to the Mindsetter

I was thinking about the fact that we need a new Decanter. There are so many dreadful words not included in the old one. Recycling isn't there. Ridiculous word. It sounds like coming back from somewhere on a bicycle. What is wrong with good old Kadorian "salvage"? And all those words used as the wrong part of speech: "party", "critique" and "access" as verbs, for example, or "savvy" as an adjective.

And what about "mindset"? What on earth is a "mindset"? It sounds like something bongos might call their television sets. You know the thing that sets their minds. "Do not adjust your set - it will adjust you".

Or is it the result of the mind-setting?

"How do you like my new mindset, darling?"

"It's just the same as everyone elses."

"Don't say that! Don't ever say that! It is completely different. I am a rebel. I am an individualist."

Well, of course she is. They all are. She probably has a warped sense of humour too. Not nasty messy warping like that caused by over-exposure to the sun or water on the brain, but nice neat warping, moulded to the correct curvature (politically and otherwise) and each with the same little dreadfully-clever swear word neatly turned up at the end. Rather like factory-torn jeans.

Of course she is a rebel, an individualist and a non-conformist. She ought to be. Milliards of taxpayers' pounds and quintillions of corporate dollars have gone into making her one. She is a piece of precision engineering wrought upon the most delicate and difficult raw material available - the human mind. She has been successfully detached from the traditional ground from which she sprung, like ore extracted from a mine, and turned into something new.

She is the most expensive and the most successful mass-product on earth.
Miss Amelia

Jun 25th, 2005 - 6:46 AM
Re: A Visit to the Mindsetter

This gives me an opportunity to ask a question that has been in my thoughts lately. Is it proper for one to refer to one's friends in the possessive tense?

Might one call one's particular friend "My Annick," or one's darling, "My Doris," particularly when speaking to others?
Lady Aquila

Jun 25th, 2005 - 11:46 AM
Re: A Visit to the Mindsetter

I have to say, I haven't heard this one. "My blonde" or "my brunette" is very common in Aristasian usage, but that, of course is rather different. The term "own" as one of affection seems to have been used very early in the 20th century - often in address as well as reference. I seem to recall a child called Anthea in an E. Nesbit book being called "own Panther" (Panther being her pet-name). Does anyone else remember this?

But getting back to your actual question, really everything tends to depend on where it comes from. Is it a bongoism? It doesn't especially sound like one to me. Is it an antiquated revival? A usage from a particular place? A personal whim? All those are likely to be acceptable.

One must remember that bongoisms are actually unacceptable simply because they are bongoisms. As someone remarked, an ongoing situation is not inherently worse than an oncoming train, but the former happens to be associated with bongo-talk, so we avoid it.

So do let me know where the idiom comes from. Has anyone else any thoughts on it?
Princess Mushroom

Jun 25th, 2005 - 1:25 PM
Re: A Visit to the Mindsetter

Well, I like it. It seems very intimate and nice. Unless of course it has especially bongo associations, which I probby wouldn't know about.

It doesn't sound bongo to me, becaue the Pit is all about "personal independence" and fragmentation.The idea of closeness and belonging: committment even to the point of a certain sense of possession is very un-bongo, I should have thought.

Forming and acknowledging strong bonds and ties is very Aristasian, and this style of speech strongly supports that.

That is my untutored impression, anyway.
Miss Amelia

Jun 26th, 2005 - 5:37 AM
Re: A Visit to the Mindsetter

I'm afraid I rather invented it myself! At least, I believe I did. Perhaps I heard it elsewhere and can't recall.

I began using the phrase in April. I liked it because it implied intimacy as well as dependence. I like to imagine that one does belong to one's close friends - one has strong ties and obligations to them, after all.

I'm quite sure you can all see what a mess I am. I thought this particular phrase might be a good way to begin. I would like to improve both my choice of words and my speech itself, but, since I have only a vague idea of what is proper, I thought it prudent to ask those more informed than me.

Jun 26th, 2005 - 9:48 AM
Re: A Visit to the Mindsetter

Well, all I can say is, congratters on a jolly good invention! I shall certainly consider using it. You may well have added a new expression to the ever-expanding Aristasian vocabulary.

It is lovely to have you here, and do ask more things. If they are all as charming as that one, what a lovely time we shall have!

Jun 27th, 2005 - 7:36 PM
Re: A Visit to the Mindsetter

Dear Ladies,

I thought this would be a good place to ask about two words, unknown to me, which I've come across in Aristasia. They are: "hestia" and "sithame". I'm sure they have interesting meanings and wonder if you might explain them.

Thank you very much.


Sushuri Novaryana

Jun 28th, 2005 - 9:55 AM
Re: A Visit to the Mindsetter

Thank you very much for your interesting questions, Miss Suzanna.

"Hestia" means the home or household, properly "the place centred on the hearth-fire", which is the embodiment of the sun in the microcosm of the house (as is the heart in the microcosm of the body).

The term "hestia" is often used in contradistinction to "agora", which means the public world. Patriarchal societies tend to be agoracentric, believing that the public world is the focus of all importance, while feminine societies are more hestiacentric, seeing the household as the centre of life (we still refer in English to our homes as "where we live" - a very significant expression when one thinks about it).

The movement from hestia to agora has been an important part of late-patriarchy. Most early education, for example, once took place in the home, as did much work. People who owned shops often lived above or behind them and the shop was a "public" extension of the home. Many craftspeople worked from their homes, as did farmers. Today most of these functions are transferred to "public" institutions like schools, factories, and supermarkets, while television brings the agora right into the centre of the home, forming a new "focus" (the word "focus" originally means "hearth-fire").

Aristasians stress the importance of the hestia as the centre of life. For example, when modern people perceive something amiss with the world, their first thought tends to be to change the agora (this is termed "politics"). Aristasians point out that such efforts are largely futile, as one has no control over the agora, whereas one can have full control over one's hestia, and this is where efforts should be directed. The idea of Aristasia-in-Telluria as a union of linked households (or hestias) is thus based in Aristasian philosophy.

Sithame (pronounced sit-ah-may) means the special thame of an individual. Thame (with a small "t") is a complex word that means "law" and "harmony" and "own-nature". In a traditional society there is the thame that is proper to everyone, there is the thame that is proper to a particular estate (priestesses and intellectuals, nobles, artisans, servants) to a particular job or function (motherhood, musicianship, etc.) There is also the thame that is special to an individual - her own personal nature, her "calling", her "way". This is called her sithame or own-thame.

I hope this clarifies the concepts. Do please ask further questions if you wish.