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  • Writer's pictureCatherine Norton

It Seems

In the Russian language, кажется (kazhets-ya) translates to "It seems." кажется comes up frequently in my course and in songs, so I imagine it is widely used to soften a negative statement, like "It seems you are working hard but not getting results." Americans would say that sentence without the softener - a little more bluntly.

Learning another language helps us reflect on our own. When I thought about "It seems," it helped pull an awareness from me. And that was, "It seems I am not happy, even though I am much happier than I was in the past."

I thought about past relationships, questioned my belief that men "ruined my life," and explored why I don't date now. Aha! Thank you кажется. This reflection was helpful and shifted something within me.

I invite you to try кажется. What follows when you hold "It seems..." loosely in your mind? Does it trigger a self-truth that is useful for contemplation?

Image courtesy of the Canva pro media library.

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Catherine Norton
Catherine Norton
May 28, 2022

Someone I respect recently said to me, "Why bother learning Russian? It won't be popular for at least 100 years!" And I thought wow, first I am not learning Russian to be popular and second, there is a big difference between appreciating culture and language and endorsing the decisions made by politicians. This is like others hating all Americans and the English language because of what our president says or does. Please don't blame me for the wars my government engages in. There is never an anti-war choice on the American ballot. I have absolutely no control over our military. I am sure many Russians feel the same way.

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