Meditatio 7: I Remember (Je me souviens)
The Ambience of the Past
Have you ever viewed one of those YouTube videos called ‘ambience’ videos? There are all kinds, of course. There are the very popular nature sounds: those of the forest, the sea, the lakeside cabin. I recently discovered my favorite ones: ambience videos that recreate a specific historical setting. A scriptorium in a medieval monastery, the interior of an Iroquois longhouse, an Edwardian-era parlour set for tea, a 1920s writer’s den… These videos are often very impressive in their high degree of historical accuracy and in the attendant sound effects (church bells pealing, farm animals crying, people laughing and chatting…) they recreate to make you feel like you’re right there. Like you’ve time-traveled to a far-away land. Strangely enough, they also make you feel like you’re right at home… Why does this virtual reality appeal to us so much?
I think it has something to do with our desire to experience the past as a ‘distant home’, as something which is mysterious and yet very familiar, something which, ultimately, allows us to touch the eternal within our souls. It is a desire we all share, some more than others. For me, this need to immerse myself in the experience of timelessness is very, very strong! It is, I would venture to say, a spiritual need. A spiritual need which informs most everything I do, from art to writing to podcasting. It is a need which will shape very episode of this podcast, inviting you to share and participate in a timeless ‘ambiance poem’, one which seeks to envelop you in a contemplative and creative mood. My aim is to capture a moment, to try and capture something of the essence of a moment in time as if it were a fine perfume that I wanted to bottle and offer as a gift from me to you. I truly believe that, in the midst of the current upheaval in the world, it is a gift which is precious and vital. So I invite you to make yourself a nice cup of tea, and accompany me on this gentle and meditative journey of discovery…
...To hear the full article, please tune in to episode 3 of my podcast here!