Irrelevant fact for the day: if I were to ever rename my blog, I would change it to the waters and the wild. It's from a poem by Yeats, The Stolen Child. I don't suppose a poem about children being lured away from the world by faeries is much of a useful basis for anything in particular but the romantic melancholic in me sees something different. A longing, a fantasy, a dream to escape the burdens of adulthood and return for a little while to the limitless imagination of childhood. I think it's healthy, actually. I think there's an unadulterated joy in throwing yourself into the possibilities of make-believe, into that place where you know something is not true but you believe it could be.
Do you ever wonder why human beings have drawn and sung and danced even before we collectively developed language? There's a lot in there about belonging and making some sense out of a world we'll never be able to really understand, sure, about passing down cultural norms and standards to future generations, no doubt. About preserving some part of our selves for the future. But it's more and beyond that I think. It's a letting go, a falling into a place of possibility, hope, and wonder. An expansion of the soul, whatever the soul may be. It's beyond language, beyond science, beyond categorisation and collection. It's a primordial melting pot of everything human beings have ever felt, or thought, or imagined themselves to be. It's not just about story, it is story, and story is ... story is where we experience the divine. It's where we create meaning, a space we can, as Thomas Merton says, both lose ourselves and find ourselves at the same time.
Or not. And that's the whole point, isn't it? What is true is a lot less important to us than what we believe is true. (And, as the story goes, what is truth?) I believe in the waters and the wild of the imagination. I believe in their power to lure people away from their sorrow and fear into a space where they can remember the infinite wonders of an infinite universe. If not for more than a minute, than at least for that minute, and that minute can be time enough to garner loins and keep moving forward.
If that's not magic, I don't know what is.