Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Thought for the Day

I recently read Kate Braestrup's Here If You Need Me: A True Story, which I enjoyed very much. I don't re-read books that often, but I expect I will re-read this one. I'd like to share a quote that Braestrup includes. She says:
In his book The Hidden Heart of the Cosmos, cosmologist Brian Swimme offers the following exercise:

Invite someone to visit you who lives at least twenty miles away and who has never visited you before. You can give verbal instructions on how to get to your abode...but the one rule is this: In your directions you may refer to anything but human artifice. You may refer to hills, oak trees, the constellations of the night sky, the lakes or ocean shores or caves...ponds, trails, or prairies...estuaries, bluffs, woodlands...creeks, swamps...and so on.
Braestrup goes on to say that although she could not do it herself, she knows some people who are so familiar with their natural surroundings that they could. Could you? I could give directions to someone who was about a mile away, but not twenty.

3 comments:

Linda at teacherdance said...
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Linda at teacherdance said...

I tried to get to this today, but just too much else going on. This is so interesting, Tabatha. And I will look up the book too. I think I'll start by looking on my way to school. I am now 'filled' with city things, although there are hills and trees. Wow-I'm thinking...

Author Amok said...

That's a fascinating exercise, Tabatha. I think I'd have an easier time doing it at my parents' house in the mountains than here in the suburbs. There is less "human artifice" cluttering the landscape there.