About me, Lena Nechet, L∃N∀
In addition to introduction and formal statements, in this section I have more informal and personal self-description: my values and origins, and selected autobiographical stories from childhood to adult life.
The meaning of my art signature is my first name in alternative symbols. The short form of my real name is Lena, and
L∃N∀ is my signature art seal. ∃∀ - are math signs, which mean "exists"
∃ and "for all"
When I started using my signature online in 2000s, there was no safe-to-use Unicode character with a line above (logical "not") for the sign
∀, "for all" - and thus the meaning changed from "exists not for all" to almost the opposite "exists for all", which I find amusing - hope you do too!
My last name, Nechet, means "odd number" in Ukrainian, like
-1, 1, 3, 5, 7, ... - integers that cannot be divided by 2 exactly. This is my birth name.
- Where do you find meaning in your life?
- What are you capable of achieving?
- When do you feel truly alive?
- What is your passion?
- Whom do you love?
- Who are you?
- And now?
The first 7 defining words (nouns) I would choose to describe myself:
- Artist - an abstract fine art painter and portraitist, enchanted by photography and videography. I always knew I will paint, but it took a couple of life-threatening events to make me drop almost everything else and dare to dive into the madness of purposeless creation. I am obsessed with composition and color, and have always been.
- Fruitarian - long-term, since 18, which suggests a lot about my lifestyle: predominantly fresh fruit and seeds-based vegan diet, environmentally-friendly attitude, avoiding buying too much, etc. I ran large ethical online communities, and still minimally maintain the data from the Fruitarian's Network. Recently I got a chance to start a small orchard, which still requires some foundational work. In the past, I paid other people to plant thousands of trees and supported wildlife protection and animal rescue causes. Now, I have propagated and planted many perennial plants myself. I donate to independent media that educate people about legal changes they can support to make the Earth more life-friendly on a global scale.
- Humanist - who can criticize the hell out of the current humanist manifesto :) I am a secular person with a deity-independent moral code. At 18, I was baptized Orthodox Christian in a long ceremony in an old monastery upon the kind request of my grandmother. Still, I am a lifelong non-theist: agnostic in regard to knowledge and atheist in regard to belief - science and character-based. I am simply unwilling to be mentally subordinate. I will protect everyone's right to believe in anything they want though - for the sake of the freedom of mind. What do I believe?
- Polyglot - as a multilingual person, I spoke several languages, and this experience made my thinking more independent from grammatical and cultural conditioning, I believe. The need to set my mind free by verbal expression made me a poet at 13, and I used this tool in each language I knew sufficiently well.
- Web Developer - I love the internet. I was happy with server programming for several years, regarding it as an art without emotions. I still enjoy it now and then. I like its clear logical structures, immediate results, and practical application of math. I am painfully aware of the loss of freedom, monopolization, and prevalence of misinformation and junk content on our networks. I try to do my part in fixing it.
- Investor - I started to invest risky and early, as a university student, with currencies and commodities, and later transitioned into mid-term stock trading, followed by index funds (ETFs). My degree is in economics, and this is how I used it. Risk-taking gives me thrills, and I need to guard myself against passionate moves (I lost a lot on alternative energy!). I dislike being in debt, so I managed to never have any serious liabilities. I believe that financial fluency and access to markets and capital-building instruments are essential rights in modern society.
- Female - I am a serially monogamous heterosexual woman, who seeks the depth of intellectual and erotic connection with one man at a time. I am rarely physically attracted to anyone, and seldom meet people with whom I see the potential to experience what I want. Nonetheless, mutual love is not only my "drug" of choice, I prioritize it in life decision making. Friendship is of almost the same importance to me, but gender plays no role. I am not family-oriented but I never dated casually. My eroticism is directly connected to a person's mind. Now, I am surprisingly happily married, to a guy who also was and stays my friend, for years - we laugh a lot.
If I would use only a few adjectives to describe myself, I would choose these additional words:
- Happy - I am quite joyful most of the time. If I am not in a blissful state, it is usually because of actual difficulties in my life. If those are bad enough, which happened many times, I still cannot stay sad for too long. It feels like I can not allow myself melancholy. Usually, I quickly find ways to force myself out of sadness through action or radical material changes. Luckily for me, I started practicing prolonged meditations (zazen, pranayama, kundalini, etc.) early in my youth and had the time of my life, staring at empty walls.
- Sensitive - in some cases overly so. I used to have extreme color sensitivity, to the point that I could wear only achromatic clothing for some periods of my life, was annoyed by paint on buildings, and so on. Once, I painted my walls black, another time - my blond hair. I had periods of white walls and attire. To this day, you can notice these tendencies in my clothing and minimal home decoration. On top of that, I can be inexplicably sensitive to some words, and especially facial expressions.
- Risky - I can take and handle lots of risks if I know the reason why, have considered the range of outcomes, and can initiate the action on my own. The problem is that for most of my life, I could tolerate the possibility of very bad results as well. A few times I actually lived through the scary consequences of my risk-taking attitude. At the same time, I almost never feel adventurous. Maybe, it is because I am rarely bored. In some areas, I can hardly tolerate any risk at all, for example, for fun. I do maintain an emergency fund in three forms at all times because I do not want to lose any dignity or health. I take only a few things for granted because I know I am at risk of losing everything. I rarely can find comfort in anything connected to dependency - it saved me from addictions and turned me into a difficult girlfriend. I take risks to let precious truth come my way - it decreases my risk to make stupid mistakes, or to die largely clueless.
- Decisive - in personal matters, I tend to make up my mind quickly and permanently. I do not look back with doubts. I prevent myself from having regrets by ensuring that my process of making decisions is maximally all-factor-encompassing and minimally instinctual (benefiting the species), and does not contradict my intuition. I stay true to myself because life becomes unbearable if I do not.
- Lonely - somewhat, intellectually. Although I am willing to invest a lot in friendship with the right people, only with a few close friends I can be fully myself, and most of them live far away. In most cases, even among good friends, I need to avoid certain subjects and try to filter my humor. I spend lots of my time in solitude, by choice, but deep human connections are absolutely precious to me.
- Concentrated - I can easily focus on something of my choice for hours at a time. Sometimes I work on projects for weeks, disregarding almost everything else. It can be quite unhealthy. But when I am distracted and cannot continue for a while, it becomes almost painful to keep in mind all the information needed to restart. It could be very disappointing to forget something important or not to be able to go into the same mindset. I avoid that bother by immersion but I fear interruptions. Since I was about 14, I have been aware of my big flaw: if I see the clear end of a project, I lose interest and move on. In my mind, it is done. Another corresponding flaw I have: it is near impossible for me to do something I do not want unless there is an existential threat of some kind. I think it is called laziness :) Keeping concentration longer allows me therefore to overcome these two limitations to some extent.
- Intense - my brain demands stimulation and transformation. In silent introspection, it is full of visual activity. Even my meditations on nothingness are sometimes singularly intense. In conversations, I can be passionately engaged. I attempt to be sincere, even if only in essence, because we always need to filter out irrelevancies. For many years, I practiced full truthfulness, but that turned out to be too dangerous. I still believe that people deserve kind measured honesty, even if reserved or challenging. Interactions with both smart and kind people energize me more than anything else.
I was able to maintain relative fluency only in three languages at a time. Switching between more languages is not practical for me. Now I use only four natural languages on a weekly basis. But at various times, I was fluent in five in total.
Я тебе кохаю. Я тебя люблю. Te quiero. Ich liebe dich. I love you.
Before I was five, I spoke mainly my first native Ukrainian (Українська). Then, I lived in a Russian-speaking city and went to a Russian (Русский) school. By age twelve, I spoke a street dialect of Spanish (Español), while living in Latin America. My attempt to revive it and learn standard Castellano fifteen years later was not successful. Now, living in Southern California, I hope to pick up more of it again. I started using German (Hochdeutsch) in 1999, and became fully fluent by age twenty-eight, and my decent English fluency came around 2010. I studied English in schools previously, but the challenge was to unlearn the wrong stuff I acquired elsewhere and to deal with the referential cultural archness of U.S. English.
In general, most difficult in operating multiple languages are these three aspects:
- separating the languages clearly in the mind, provided it is difficult to know for me, which language I am currently using - it takes a few seconds to realize;
- switching between thinking modes of approaching live and expressing thoughts base on different concepts of classification of matter and various societal traditions;
- dedicating time for regular immersion.
Being a Humanist, I am often asked, whether I believe in nothing.
I do. Nothing is a wonderful concept for me that symbolizes a state of mind from which one can appreciate (or not) everything else. I do believe in emptying my mind to give place for new ideas. Jokes aside, I believe in love, friendship, kindness, cooperation, compassion, brave awareness, self-reflection, critical thinking, purposeful change, beauty of creation, usefulness of scientific method, ever changing life forms, reasonable personal rights and freedoms - to say the least.
I constantly adjust my believes, especially when I analyze complex conflicts and situations. With time, I make less adjustments to the major parts of my credo, and more to more specialized areas. For example, kindness as a principle stays, but the ways to practice and apply it under new or dramatic circumstances gets refined and becomes more dependent on various conditions and external factors.
The major events of my life that shaped my belief system were these seven:
- Being given away at age one and returning to my parent after age five;
- Not being indoctrinated into a religion and having access to good books early on;
- Observing multiple ways of life and using three languages before age twelve;
- Knowing what human societies do to other forms of life and the environment;
- Being a double-immigrant and have lived under six national states with different sets of laws;
- Having both bad and good partnerships;
- Russo-Ukrainian war since 2014.
In general, I could be described as partially liberal - for almost any personal choice that is not detrimental to others, and partially conservative - for the most part, fiscally, and definitely for maintaining and building upon what is good, especially for preserving ecosystems (wild life conservation), freedoms, beneficial institutions, cooperation, knowledge, and innovation.
In life, I failed almost at everything, except a few important things, fortunately. These are a few random bits of curious information about my endeavors.
People deserve to know where ideas originate, I believe. And, people should share their stories.
Origins × 18
Before 1980s - my family of origin, birthplace, and circumstances.
Changing cultures taught me that people like to check where you came from to reduce their own barrier from your strangeness, and I am all for it. I love people's stories, and here is mine.
Childhood × 10
About 1980s - my early years of life, till the onset of puberty.
Adolescence × 3
About 1990s - after puberty into early youth: my teenage years and early twenties.
Adolescence, growing up, is a transitional stage of physical and psychological development.
Youth × 1
About 2000s - more of my determining years, mid and late twenties into thirties - my life in the West.
Adulthood × 0
2010s, 2020s, ... Current states and reflections.
San Diego, California , USA , LenaNechet.com