Does anyone know where the phrase ‘bookworm’ comes from?
I looked it up.
It’s kinda gross.
“The origin of the idiom “bookworm” probably originated as a somewhat derogatory term for a person who studied or read more than was usual. Bugs such as silverfish, book lice, and linoleum beetles were referred to as bookworms because they inhabited books; thus the idiom.”
I’ve been in the habit of looking up common phrases after seeing a few posts on Instagram that highlight the often derogatory, offensive and even racist origins of some common phrases we use. Now, when I remember to do so (which is becoming more common than not), I try to look up the origin of a phrase before I use it. That led me to look up the phrase bookworm before I used it to self-describe myself this summer. So, let’s skip the phrase ‘bookworm’, shall we!
This summer has been the summer of the library!
Last fall, when the library opened up again, I took the short walk down and got myself a library card. Since school was in session, I ended up not using my library card as often as I had expected as my time was devoted to school reading and learning. Fast forward to the end of the summer and I’ve been on a steady diet of challenging, evocative, and whimsical reads that I wanted to take the time to share with you.
From diving into recommended reads to books I saw on Instagram that I took screenshots of, the past few months have been filled with page turners I’ve loved sharing with other people and now I’m so excited to share them with you.
What I’ve been reading lately, summer 2022 (aside from Marvel comics😜)
A powerful read on the power of the breath, history of studying the breath, breathing poorly, breathing better and full of helpful breathing techniques. You know how much I love the breath so this was a good find!
The Universal Christ by Richard Rohr
This was the first book by Richard Rohr I had read. I had heard a lot about him as an author (that spanned the good and bad) and had previously read some quotes I agreed with some I didn’t so I figured it was time to read a book by him!
The Making of Biblical Womanhood by Beth Allison Barr
GAME CHANGER. I 100% recommend this book to everyone! If you’re looking for a captivating read from a historian that goes through history including language, Bible translations, inerrancy, culture, the reformation and more, this book would be a good one to add to your list! I’m also planning to purchase my own copy because it was that good and I’d love to be able to lend it out to people.
Falling Upwards by Richard Rohr
In my adventures hearing about Richard Rohr, this book is the most talked about so I gave it a read! It framed life lived in two parts with the second part of life being where we find more spiritual themes being our focus. It reminded me a bit of some of the same ideas as the book, The Critical Journey which highlights the stages of faith most people move through.
A (thick) collection of poems spanning a number of her books. Definitely a book I’d purchase for myself to read through slowly.
Everything is Spiritual by Rob Bell*
Another author I had heard so much about and had yet to read! Most people preface their telling me about reading a Rob Bell book with the ‘drama’ which I hadn’t previously heard so I always find it kind of funny. This book was a delight to read.
The Disordered Cosmos by Chanda Prescod Winstein*
A mind-blowing adventure into scientific concepts that were interesting and went waaayyy over my head while also getting deep into racism, patriarchy and other forms of oppression in the science world and the rest of the world in general. I very much enjoyed it!
Beauty Chasers by Timothy D. Willard*
This is my ‘in-between’ book which I started and come back to between books being taken out at the library. I love the call to beauty and wonder that this book invites us into.
*Shared from my personal page Instagram post about these:
These books all come together to inspire both a sense of wonder at the world around me, while also cultivating a greater sense of curiosity into the oppressive systems I am part of, specifically at this time, based on interests like spirituality and astronomy (and the two together at that!). While chatting with my spiritual director today, in sharing about how I’ve wanted to take an astronomy course, I spoke of how books like the disordered cosmos make me aware of the space I take up— both in good ways and in ways that restrict others from taking up space (and particularly in areas I wouldn’t have thought of before), inviting others to take up space with me, and looking at opportunities with the tension of excitement for opportunity while asking questions like ‘who is better for this?’ and moving from there…
Anyways, it’s a wild ride over here in the world of books and thoughts and existence (and especially after those JWST photos this week) 🙃
Jesus and John Wayne by Kristin Kobes Du Mez
This. Book. Was. Wild. Another top recommendation (especially if you read The Making of Biblical Womanhood). This book goes through U.S. history and how ‘evangelical christians’ became prominent and the idea of ‘christian values’ and who stands for them in terms of policy, politics and voting. I’m not American but, in Canada, we are highly influenced by the US so it was a good read!
What is the Bible? by Rob Bell
Another book I will recommend to everyone! Lent to me by a friend, Rob Bell has such a lovely writing style that is easy and accessible. In this book he goes through what the Bible is, how it was put together, and answers some key questions people tend to have. I’d like to offer the phrase here of ‘theological assumptions’, which is what we all make. We all lean into different theological assumptions that is where we land and place our understanding so while I appreciated and resonated with this book, you may not, and that’s totally okay! We are one big family of faith and learning and growing and trying our best to follow Jesus and that will land us across the spectrum of belief within the umbrella of Christian that has all kinds of denominational beliefs.
A sci-fi read! After heavy books, I was craving something lighter and creative. This book captivated me from the mid-way on and I am looking forward to reading more of the series (and now seeing the movies as they continue to release!)
Wholehearted Faith by Rachel Held Evans
A quick read, but a lovely read, sharing the late Evans’ experience and desire for wholehearted faith. Pulling in ideas from Brene Brown and sharing her lived experience of faith, this read had me feeling resonate and looking forward to reading some of her previous works.
Read This to Get Smarter by Blair Imani
My current read, this book expands on Blair’s ‘Smarter in Seconds’ series on Instagram which spans topics of race, class, gender, disability and more. It really does a great job at making things simple and easy to understand and informs us on how to be better, and smarter, humans interacting with a wide variety of people who are all beautiful and unique.
It’s such a privilege to read, to learn, to take in knowledge, and apply it. It’s such a privilege to have the free time to read and the ability to take out books from the library and connect with people about those same books and talk through what we are learning and how we are growing. My ‘holds’ list on the library app is still quite large so there will be many more lists of books to share in the future.
Let me know if you read any of these!
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