Thinking Wild
Theo Grutter
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Buy *Thinking Wild: Its Gifts of Insight (A Way to Make Peace with My Shadow)* by Theo Gruttero nline

Thinking Wild: Its Gifts of Insight (A Way to Make Peace with My Shadow)
Theo Grutter
Turning Stone Press
334 pages
March 2013
rated 4 of 5 possible stars

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Open this book to the Contents page. Spend time enjoying essay headings like

I am waist deep in blaming, and I am still shoveling to free myself.

The Earth is lush with the beautiful flowers of apparent injustice.

Take hatred, Theo. Sit down with this unwanted child, and hear it out.

Thanks over and over for my ignorance.

We are walking boxes stuffed with gifts. We bow to each other, congratulating how impeccably we are wrapped.

Blessings for the misunderstandings

Goodness is each man's personal jigsaw puzzle.
Then pick the one most appealing to your day and luxuriate. Be prepared, though. Since author Theo Grutter is originally from Switzerland (thus English is not his native language), he employs some peculiar yet pleasing phrasing. There will be a few melodic sentences that become nonsensical when repeated and pondered. Or perhaps just to Americans.

As the publisher advertises, Thinking Wild is indeed "A tapestry of metaphors, thoughts, ideas.... over 100 short 'try-me-outs.'" Grutter explains:

I have spent maybe five thousand days and nights alone on the ocean, fishing. This helps me to leap out of my society's 'orderly' scene. This solitude has become my drug of choice. We lead a simple life that has been sweeter to us than I was told to expect.
Grutter would be fascinating to converse with. A man who called Paris; New York City; Sitka, Alaska; San Blas, Mexico; and other fascinating locales home, he abandoned the corporate world early in life, marrying Clara, once a concert pianist. Five children shared their adventurous lifestyle. Novembers were exploration months, hiking in Borneo, Papua New Guinea, Ethiopia, Sikkim, Cuba, Honduras, the tribal areas of Pakistan and in dozens of other countries.
I have had a car in my name for only three months of my life. And don't fear for a minute that I talk here of whining sacrifice, of being married to only a bicycle. It's just that this is the best bargain from life I could figure out.
In Fecundity of the mind, Grutter asks
And what plate of yummy food did you serve your imagination today? Did you laugh off the terror of the strange and take your mind on a safari? Or did you bore your mind just to figure out the cheapest fare to not- much-where?
Readers will delight in finding essays that cover popular topics like overpopulation, overspecialization and the woeful state of public education. But as quickly as it seems Grutter is advocating the opinions of a particular group, another section will present a topic favored more by readers degrees away in their thinking. Grutter's musings work multiple sides of some topics seemingly on purpose; to drive home his belief that we humans need to abandon preconceived notions—and resist jumping on the next boat riding a wave of popular wisdom.

A number of selections deal with religion; challenging conventional worshipers.

Many people expect their organized religion to be for their minds what the Cadillac is for their bodes—a vehicle of comfort. No climbing over logs anymore. No confusion. No lying. No risk of getting lost. No driving on either side of the road. Their souls become proud inmates of a fine road system carved into their psychic wild land. Others see in their religion a great cruise ship, beautifully furnished with all taken care of to comfort indoor-minds. These people like to devote themselves to one sacred book. They like to have a formula classifying everything—no doubts, no wondering, no growing pains, no creative fevers, no driving on the ‘wrong’ side, and no weed thoughts for them.
One additional consideration before plunging into Grutter’s musings: he writes in a definitively European voice; the fairly frequent usage of erection metaphors distances this female American reader. But such a style does drive home the naturalness of Grutter's thinking, and how far removed from that many of us are. Without a doubt, readers will enjoy his summation: "Did I learn to celebrate the goodness that Life is teaching me?"

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at © Leslie Raith, 2014

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