Enchanting

You know, it’s funny. I don’t think of the Wild Hunt as one of my favorite blogs, but damn, when a post over there sticks with you, it sticks with you.  I guess what I mean is that it’s snuck up on me as a favorite blog.

And I’m completely enjoying mulling over this idea of “reenchantment,” of finding places that allow us to experience something Mysterious, or something as Mysterious.

One of the things that strikes me when I’m weeding is that eventually the brain just shuts off and the body hums along happily doing something it knows how to do.  It strikes me on two levels.  One is that, when I’m doing it, I can remember, vividly, being a child and sitting in the grass and tearing at it to get down at the dirt.  I feel it like there’s almost no time passed. The other is that I feel like I’m doing something my body as a human animal just knows how to do. I can’t explain it, exactly, except that I feel a kind of recognition that is deeper than just this brain level stuff.

I think that’s kind of the flip side of this idea of “reenchantment,” because isn’t that a way of trying to interact with the world that lets you stand in the presence of something your brain does not understand but which your body somehow does?

I mean, ha, if I were a philosopher, I could get at it easier, but it’s like you both don’t recognize it (or else it wouldn’t be mysterious) and you very much recognize it (or else you wouldn’t know that it was mysterious).

I think this is one of the reasons that I search out cemeteries.  One of the reasons I’m tickled about sharing with you my terrible fake ghost stories. I want there to be places I can get to that are enchanted, that make me feel that dissonance when you both know and don’t know something at the same time.

Even having this discussion, though, I am frustrated by the way this language won’t stretch to accommodate me.  I feel like whenever I try to talk about feeling like I am both a brain or a consciousness, a “me” and an animal or a body, or an it (which still has some level of awareness), and that I am usually under the impression that the brain rules the body and they function together rather seamlessly, but occasionally I have cause to be aware of how independent they are from each other, it sounds nutty.  How can you experience yourself as being both completely whole and uniform and fundamentally fragmented?

And yet, that’s exactly how it is for me.

And I hope my lawn is sparkly when I take the dog out here in a second, because I just don’t believe that’s ever going to not seem magical.

5 thoughts on “Enchanting

  1. Yes.

    I think.

    Well, no, I’m going to be firmer than that. Yes. If I’m going to define enchantment as that feeling of something being mysterious and known at the same time, then I think both places and actions can have that quality.

  2. Ha, I think I mean “familiar.” But I don’t know. I mean, I’m thinking about the sparkle in my grass again. That’s completely understandable. There are dew points to consider and the angle of the porch light and issues of refraction and reflection and so on. All very understandable.

    And yet, I still find my sparkly lawn enchanting. And I think I would, even if I could write out every mathematical formula that explains it.

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