“Was not their mistake once more bred of the life of slavery that they had been living?—a life which was always looking upon everything, except mankind, animate and inanimate—‘nature,’ as people used to call it—as one thing, and mankind as another, it was natural to people thinking in this way, that they should try to make ‘nature’ their slave, since they thought ‘nature’ was something outside them” — William Morris

Sunday, January 21, 2024

An Extract from Hell

 Intimate distance can never be spoken as well as this: I have a dream. Right here and now, one can sense the affective power, the surging sonority, the outrageous poetry, of I have a dream. This is the fullness of I am alive

If we can find magic in the default, mundane sense of “dream,” how much easier will it be to understand the visionary sense in which Martin Luther King says I have a dream?

Dreaming is what brains do by default, in sleep. Sleep is the ground state of being alive, just as being alive is the ground state of dancing, just as dancing is the ground state of drama… 

King declares: "I have a dream that one day down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; that one day right down in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers." Ultimately, that vision is about how simply alive beings can just be, without being targets or weapons; without being arrows. 

To be able to sleep in public, literally, without being punished in deed and thought and word; just to be alive, in the most relaxed and vulnerable sense; just to be rippling, palpitating, dreaming. Arrows of desire don’t point at all. 

Hell: Towards a Christian Ecology

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