December 2021

Editor's Note

Hello friends,

I hope this letter finds you happy and healthy.

I know it’s been such a difficult time for many of us, but looking forward I’m also imagining which stories we will tell from the Covid years. What will we share with the next generations about what happened, how will we remember this experience, and what will we forget? Stories are the way we remember experiences, but stories are never perfect and from a specific point of view. Stories are the marriage between memories and imagination. But exactly that is what makes us human.

Enjoy the collection of stories the Blue Sky Republic team created and curated for you.

Warm regards,

Arne and Maarten

P.s. The book in this photo is "Sapiens Graphic Novel: Volume One" by Yuval Noah Harari,
illustrated by Daniel Casanave and co-written with David Vandermeulen. 

"We Are Story" 

Article by Maarten Jurriaanse
As we venture into the season of social connection and reflection, we cannot ignore the subject of Storytelling — also the theme of this months’ Newsletter to which this article contributes. My most vivid memories of story-experience originated during nightly family readings, gathered around a real Christmas tree, decorated with real and burning candles, a bucket of water and a nervous mother, in a small cottage on the island of Terschelling, The Netherlands...
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"Heider-Simmel: Is there a story?"

Back in the 1940s, psychologists Fritz Heider and Marianne Simmel made  a simple animated film. Heider and Simmel used it in an experiment: They asked people to watch the film and describe what they saw happening. Try it out yourself.

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"The Story of Sarah Braud"
Creative Leadership Podcast with Arne van Oosterom

I like listening to life stories and all, yes all, life stories are interesting. I even turned it into a podcast and would like to introduce you to Sarah Braud. She was a guest on my show exactly one year ago and I think her delightful and insightful story fits this newsletter perfectly. Sarah grew up in a small Christian community filled with stories and (I’d say as a result) grew up to be a professional storyteller.
Listen and enjoy
"Wetter the better: Gothenburg's bold plan to be world's best rainy city"
Article by Richard Orange

When four-year-old Enja Bäckström and her six-year-old brother Charlie wake up on a Saturday morning to find rain coursing down the windows of their Gothenburg apartment, they often still want to go out to play. That’s because their local playground has been designed to be particularly fun when it’s wet. The Regnlekplatsen, or “rain playground”, is part of Rain Gothenburg, a bold plan to be “the best city in the world when it’s raining.” Jens Thoms Ivarsson, the artist and designer hired to develop the project explained, “What we’re looking at is: how can we use the fact that it rains quite a lot in Gothenburg in a creative way? What if we can turn the rain into an asset for the city?”
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"Is it OK to lie about Santa and the Tooth Fairy?"
Article by Cory Turner and Anya Kamenetz

In general, we try to be pretty honest people. But when it comes to Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the tooth fairy, or whatever it is in your family ... is it bad to lie to your kids to keep the magic alive?

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"The surprising benefits of journaling for 15 minutes a day—and 7 prompts to get you started" 

Article by Deepak Chopra and Kabir Sehgal

Writing in your journal as a way to release and express your thoughts, feelings and emotions can be a life-changing habit. After the loss of her husband, Lourey said she couldn’t survive reliving the pain of the tragedy by writing down her thoughts and emotions. Rewriting her life to fit a fictional narrative helped her heal faster because it allowed her to become “a spectator to life’s roughest seas.” Journalist and novelist Leila Cobo agrees. Writing fiction has now become a daily routine. “It allows me to say anything in any way that I wish. It’s the most amazing feeling.”

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"Humans Are Hardwired to Tell History in Stories. Neuroscience Tells Us Why We Get Them Wrong" 

Article by Alex Rosenberg

We love stories. We’d like to have all our knowledge packaged in stories — narratives with plots that involve people (and animals) with reasons and motives, carrying out their aims and designs, in cooperation or conflict, succeeding or being thwarted. Science comes hard to most of us because it can’t really take that form. 

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