I’ve been raised in the Netherlands, and you might know that it is a flat country. I can’t speak for all Dutch people, but I think that most of us get excited when we see hills and mountains. I still do after living between them for 15 years now here in Norway. Don’t get me wrong; we have a beautiful landscape in Holland too, but for me, hills and mountains are always associated with vacation. So, I still like this flowing landscape end I did it to this morning. At one point, somewhere halfway, I noticed a tiny snail slowly going somewhere. I took out my phone to take some pictures, the one you see at the top is one of them. After I saw this first one, I started to notice more that tried to crawl somewhere; I also saw many that were flattened by the wheels of an occasional car that drives by.
Later I took a picture with two signs telling the speed limit is 60. I wondered how fast you could drive if you didn’t want to hit these tiny snails.
“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.”
Underneath, you can read a quote from Nietzsche about morals. He was an atheist and as such. Nietzsche didn’t believe that the moral rules we should follow came from a God-like figure. Nietzsche almost always approaches his subject from different directions, making it difficult for the casual reader to understand where he is going. Whenever I read Nietzsche in English, I will read one of the more modern translations, but if I quote him a lot, I will fall back on the earlier translations because they are copyright-free. It is always fun to see what the different translater make of the original text. I cannot be the arbiter because my German is not that good, especially compared to scholars that have studied German and philosophy.
I have set myself a goal to find out what I know about certain subjects after 49 years on this rock, I did that with the question: what is gender? I have given it my best shot a few days ago so today I was searching for a book related to that question, I did that on one of those book sites, and before I knew it, I saw all kinds of recommendations in the corner of my eye, and one of them was “delusion of gender” by Cordelia Fine. I realized what I already knew: I would like…to read many of these books and question my presumptions.
Yesterday I wrote some of my thoughts down about what it is to feel like a man or a woman or even none of those. I have no scientific training, and I have not done any extensive research in this specific matter. The way I write on this blog is: I pick a subject, or it pics me, and I begin writing what I know about it without a plan where I want to end; I use what is still there from 49 years on this earth and a 25-year interest in science, philosophy, and psychology. I enjoy writing like this because while I write, thoughts start flowing, and often things float by that I haven’t seen in years; I can even surprise myself where I end, usually after around 1000 words.
In the last few years, there has been a lot of talk about gender and why we live in a world where the genders are clear and divided in most cultures. I do not have a big problem with the imagined separation between the genders, but I also don’t mind if someone doesn’t follow the “rules”.
But what is gender? We all have our thoughts, but it is pretty apparent in the western culture where I come from. When you walk in the mall or meet people, we all know from when we were young who is a girl and who is not. It is hard to deny this, and the times that you were in doubt are sparse. Everything screams man or woman, and if you take away the clothing, it becomes even more apparent. I can’t speak for the modern wave of gender confusion, but I don’t think that someone who calls themselves non-binary means that there are no differences.