The first order of business today, on this 238th birthday of Jane Austen, is the annual publication of JASNA’s Persuasions On-Line Vol. 34, No. 1 (Winter 2013). Click here for the Table of Contents to yet another inspiring collection of essays, some from the 2013 AGM in Minneapolis on Pride and Prejudice, and other “Miscellany” – all about Jane Austen…and perfect winter reading material…
Here is the link: http://www.jasna.org/persuasions/on-line/vol34no1/index.html
I will posting other things today, so please stay tuned!
To me the most wonderful thing about Jane’s stories is how much of herself she puts into them.
When I read her books I feel like I’m downloading her memories.
As a person she means a great deal to me. It’s safe to say she’s one of my biggest moral influences.
In the interest of not creating a giant tome that will only bore everyone but myself I’ll just say what I really loved about her and empathize with her. Some of these are faults and some of them virtues.
She was a very strong Christian. Not that she was a bible thumper; she kept her faith to herself. But it was central to her life.
She could judge people very quickly, sometimes unkindly, and sometimes prematurely. I think she got this from her mother.
She could feel very cynical about the institutions and people in her life.
She was always aware of her faults and tried to address them. This is her most endearing characteristic.
She had to deal with a great deal of unkindness directed at her. Her sister and her novels were her only real outlets. And yes Jane, we hear you. :)
She idolized her sister Cassandra. She absolutely looked up to her. I think Elinor Dashwood, Jane Bennett, and Jane Fairfax were based on her.
“Marianismo” is a major part of Jane’s value system. She admired the woman who was the “quiet hero” – the person who gave all with no expectation of reward, acting only out of a sense of duty and love.
She does not pull any punches when it comes to deciding on issues of right and wrong. She was no moral relativist.
She was as quick to laugh at herself, if not more so, as she was to laugh at others.
She had virtues, she had faults. She was right about some things, she was wrong about others. In short she was a beautiful, imperfect human being who I would think was wonderful even if she never wrote a single word. She was very lovable.
Spiritually, I tend to be pretty agnostic. But you wouldn’t believe the number of times her admonitions popped into my head at different times, or the number of times I really needed help and said “Jane please help me here” and it did.
One time I was really upset about something and a thought jumped into my head. “Think of the past only as its remembrance gives you pleasure”. The way it came it was very calming. I almost felt as if someone had put a hand on my right shoulder.
I felt so relieved and I in a way knew where it came from. I just said to myself “Thanks Jane”. I turned around to walk out of the room and I happened to see the time on the microwave. It said 12:16.
I know, it’s eerie. But it’s also wonderful. If I have an intercessor she is it and I’m so so so grateful. That’s why this day is so important to me.
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