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Home > Author > Tova Gabrielle
Tova Gabrielle

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Member Since: Before 2003

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  Tova Gabrielle

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I wasn't born to increase the Gross National Product!

Background Information

Buddhism, Judaism, deaths and births, hard knocks, soft knocks, no knocks and knock-knocks have brought me both misery and mystery; for all of which I am not sorry. ~ I wasn't born to increase the Gross National Product: I am a human-being, not a human-doing. The more materialistic and frantic I see people becoming, the more I want to rid my life of excesses, hunker down in my belief that only love is real, and create something entirely different from the lies around us in the news and mainstream media. I consider consuming less and running around less acts of political dissent, towards which I aspire. I sometimes ascribe to the philosophy, "Don't just Do something: Stand There". And when that fails, rebel by being a free-thinker and creative spirit. Over the past few years that has manifested in painting, drawing, bird-watching, hiking, and being with others in need (counseling; comforting; just "being there").~ Most of the people I've known in my thirties become enslaved to their accomplishments and their stuff while struggling to meet the goals of a paradigm that was not created for the artists they once were. By my late thirties, I'd lost my soul too, but regained it in my forties through education, the arts, and spirituality. Now I can boast that I've survived more than half a century of life on a planet that beats us up and then kills us--slowly. By age 50 the payoffs become clear: to be able to feel, to think and to communicate, outweigh being able to produce for the sake of production. When I was younger I wanted to save the world; now I need to save my self and try to do no harm for the duration of my time here. If in that process I can be of help to others, I welcome the opportunities that arise. I wish to dedicate the rest of my life to creating beauty and art that flies in the face of the increased destruction of all I cherish, in what was once a democracy. ~ The prescribed reality around US is not the only reality nor the truest reality, and somehow there must be a way to make small but increasing rips in that fabric through acts of kindness and reverence of the more natural world and states of mind. ~ I am acutely aware that this country was created by men, for men, to make money and gain power and dominance, and that I have always been looking for a tribal, artistic life and I still am. ~ I believe that the Banksters who have taken over our government are going to get theirs and I hope it's sooner than later. I hate male privileged attitudes and am certain that it's male power and not penises that I envy. Materialism and Machoism have created the disaster our country now faces. ~Sooner or later the truth comes out. My greatest conundrum right now in my life is how to relate my own writings to what is happening to our world. I’m left pondering these words by Adrienne Rich: "If you are troubled by the cruelty and violence and lovelessness you see around you...if you want to live in your time and not in some Hollywood or videogame fantasy, if you've seen people around you pushed around or crushed ... If you love language and see it being betrayed, if you feel a huge gap between what you're told is going on and what you actually see and feel on your nerves -- then this is the material of your art, there's no escaping it. The question then is, how do you make enduring beauty and form out of such materials? And that will be the question of a lifetime."


Birth Place
West Hartford, CT 

M.A. in Counseling Psychology with specializations in Substance Abuse Counseling (Antioch Graduate School, 1996). Trained in Mediation and Conflict Resolution, Psychodrama, and Jungian Approaches.~
Honorable mention in Writers' Digest '06 for Memoir, Published in Twins Magazine, Divorce Magazine, Moxy Magazine, Onine Journal, Newtopia, Big Bridge, 2 River View, and 120 Stories by Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, as well as other anthologies (one on animals and one on a commune i was in which has been made into a movie (Free Spirits-[still coming out in theatres]. Presently, I suffer badly from writers' block, and thus spend time tilling other fields such as sculpting, drawing, and going to museums.
I grew up (sort of) trying not to turn back into my identical twin, the othered half of the egg who has something to do with why I became a therapist. When that drove me nuts, I threw up my life as I'd known it and ran away to Berkeley to be with my daughter and the sunshine and be a full time artist and finding that being time-rich and cash poor was more than a fair trade-off. ~When I was small I once ran into a full length mirror, thinking it was my twin --read "Who's Who In the Mirror". There are actually two sets of girl twins in my family of origin!

Additional Information

I'm sometimes a saint and sometimes socially retarded, due to living in the wrong era and culture. I'm best employed as a shaman, but I can't find a job opening. I do things as if people were in Wonderland and had a sense of the absurd. While in one sense this is Wonderland in that what appears true here is false and what appears false here is true, this works against my being a seer and a truth-teller. Sadly, people do not have any respect for the absurdity of much in this life, and they can be quite unforgiving. I can't forgive that any more than I can forgive myself for being misplaced. ~I am the kind of buddhist who keeps jumping up from meditation to write sudden gleanings. An artist-with-ADD, I'm a hunter, not a gatherer-- which explains the ADD: if I want dinner, I have to catch every nuance that moves in that forest. However, being a vegetarian as well as sometimes being a vegetable, I hunt for food that doesn't have a face. ~In June '02, I moved to Berkeley because I thought I had no more reason to stay in New England than the geese did. In California I believed I might blend in, if not look normal, compared to the rest of the unemployed brilliant novelists who guiltlessly fill the cafes on weekdays.

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