Words of re-enchantment

Every now and again I seem to lose my impetus and need to pause, reflect, re-fuel and be re-inspired.

When I first got into all things narrative I was seduced by the potent mix of screenwriting, myths, fables and fairytales mixed with the practical use of anecdote circles, narrative capture, patterns and sense-making.

It was my deep immersion into the world of the ‘environmental’ storyteller at the mystical site of Cae Mabon where I met wonderful purveyors of stories, songs and even silence such as Anthony Nanson and Eric Maddern. This week I at last got my  copy of Anthony’s new book Words of Re-enchantment (writings on storytelling, myth and ecological desire) and all I can say is that his certainly do. I have only read the first two chapters so far and they are packed full of inspiration and need to be savoured like a ten year old malt.

Eric gets to write a superb foreward to the book in which he says:

We humans mediated our experience through story. Stories enchant an otherwise dull experience, adding depth and meaning to our lives. And meaning, some say is what we seek above wealth, power, knowledge and even love.

Well chosen, well told stories, spoken direct to the ear of the listener can lift us from the mundane, help us see and feel what is truly valuable in life, re-enchanting the world and help us live with joy in the face of deepening crisis.

Anthony then responds in his introduction:

(Good) stories are animated by desire… desire for resources, food, water, territory, to survive, find a mate, reproduce. It’s the pattern of significance imparted by the sequence of events resulting from a particular characters’ pursuit of particular desires that distinguishes a story…from the inchoate mass of experience and information that make up life.

Stories can re-enchant our lives, and the places we live in and the creatures with which we share the earth.

Finally I love the hidden connections between phrases that the mind throws together when reading such wonderful prose, and I could not help but think about cynefin and sensemaker when I read Anthony’s recollection of a:

mythological , multi layered historical landscape

and being inspired by Hugh Lupton & David Abram’s perception that:

everywhere a web of stories is draped over the physical landscape.


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