Monday, January 21, 2008

8/50

We Think by Feeling, What is there to Know? (Theodore Roethke)

There must be different qualities of feeling. There is a kind of feeling which is unthinking, immediate, such as what happens when we are manipulated and give in to jingoistic tendencies.

I know there is a quality of feeling that can cause a sort of blindness: love can be like that. It must be why the ancients compared it to the moon, luna, lunatic. It makes one totally unreasonable and vulnerable. Anger can cause blindness and tragedy, so can its cousin, jealousy.

But there *is* a quality of feeling, which is more like intuition, perhaps, which I believe is almost synonymous with the imagination, that mysterious force authors have talked about for centuries. This is the kind of feeling Roethke sought to tap into, that vast river of feeling that connects us to the cosmos. To "think" with this kind of "feeling" is to be whole, connected, intuitive, and spirit-filled. It is the quality of feeling I seek and hope to be guided by.

1 comment:

emmapeelDallas said...

Empathy comes from that wellspring too, I am sure of it...and empathy is a blessing...

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"I was no better than dust, yet you cannot replace me. . . Take the soft dust in your hand--does it stir: does it sing? Has it lips and a heart? Does it open its eyes to the sun? Does it run, does it dream, does it burn with a secret, or tremble In terror of death? Or ache with tremendous decisions?. . ." --Conrad Aiken

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