A Vocabulary Lesson ~ Anamnesis
This is what I love to do. I love to borrow back words the Church has claimed for its own and re-introduce them into a more universal context. Anamnesis is such a word, a wonderful word. In the Church, it’s associated by the act of remembrance, with the death, resurrection and ascension of Christ. The word comes to us from the Greek, and it can mean as well, the remembering of things from a previous existence. Literally, it means a loss of forgetfulness, and it’s that silken nuance of the phrase that intrigues me. We can easily say that to lose forgetfulness is simply to remember, that it’s nothing more than a question of semantics. This is what fascinates me, though. Remembering becomes a two-step process. First, we have to lose, or release, our forgetfulness. Only then, in step two, will we be able to remember.
This is a good time for an art project. I am thinking of a collage in particular, something not too threatening. Finger painting would do as well. As you’re settling in with the materials, hold in mind this question: What have you forgotten? Color? Shapes? Making messes? The art of play? Have you forgotten what it’s like to engage in something and not worry about outcome? Have you forgotten to listen to your own inner knowing, your inner teacher? Take this project outside, if you can, and ask the same questions of the wind as it breathes through your hair, the songs of the early robins or the peepers, the rustle of grass, the smell of the season. What of your forgetfulness do you need to lose in order to know your place within the earth community?