“Many people do indeed experience this realm of phantasy as ‘perilous’. Thresholds always are. Why else would Angels say, ‘fear not’, whenever they make an appearance? And yet, if we are to come to certain levels of truth we have to take risks with the literal, and be silly. Actually, the word ‘silly’ derives from the German ‘seelig’, meaning ‘blessed’ or ‘soulful’. That is as much as to say that you will not come to the sacred unless you are prepared to make a fool of yourself.”
– from ‘Sing Me The Creation’ by Paul Matthews.
I’m reading this book – which was loaned to me by a very-wise-indeed former teacher – and it’s a ‘Source book for poets and teachers, and for all those who wish to develop the life of the imagination’.
This was another quote about ‘foolishness’ (I seem to always have been interested in the idea of the Fool), which often stands in for its opposite, wisdom. Particularly when working with young people – although so many adults are very worried about seeming ‘foolish’ – this seems to sum up my feelings about the importance of ‘silliness’ as an access point or route into creativity.
A Methodology of Silliness, perhaps? It’s a really useful idea. I’m looking forward to putting many of the ideas in the book into practice in future, in whichever form they take (Matthews being duly humble in putting them ‘out there’ as tools to be deployed freely and loosely – thank you, Paul!).
Planning on doing some more SciPoetry over the weekend, a couple of stories in mind – Cosmic Bangs and Shakespeare’s Sonnets in DNA, or maybe some Asteroid mining….