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Homesick For Another Place - how many have this view?

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Meneldur Olvarion
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Homesick For Another Place - how many have this view?

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

I have just begun reading A.N. Wilson's C.S. Lewis: A Biography, and in the forward I came across this idea which seems to have deep roots in Western culture, from 'Otherkin' and 'Alien' believers to the philosophical undercurrent present in Athrabeth Finrod ah Andreth:
Preface–the Quest For A Wardrobe wrote: [...] Lewis himself would have been equally anxious to remind us of the whole European philosophical tradition since Plato which has attempted in the language of metaphysics to account for our sense that we do not belong in this world, that we are pilgrims and strangers here, homesick for another place where one day we shall be truly ourselves.
Now, I've seen this thought expressed quite often online in my time (which dates back to Usenet in the mid-80's), but it's something I've never felt myself. To speak bluntly, I've always felt that I'm a natural being, whereas the ordinary humans - which may include people who think this way, though I have no proof of that - are interlopers.

I just wondered if anyone reading this resonates with the 'Homesick For Another Place' idea and if they do, if they'd like to discuss it, as to me at the moment it is purely an intellectual abstraction.
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Re: Homesick For Another Place - how many have this view?

Post by Mildir »

Meneldur Olvarion wrote: Wed Jan 06, 2021 9:02 am I just wondered if anyone reading this resonates with the 'Homesick For Another Place' idea and if they do, if they'd like to discuss it, as to me at the moment it is purely an intellectual abstraction.
Alas, in my case I think the matter is rather serious, being that many times through the years I felt even motivated to attempt suicide because of this feeling.
So many call it "homesickness" but my way of experiencing it has always been more like "I don't belong here".
The main reason is that incredible "alleged" memories - in the form of images, long and short visions or just... memories of moments spent with another family - have been blooming in my mind since I was a little inexperienced child.
They were a blessing and a curse at the same time: no matter what they truly are, they had the power of teaching me how far the universe can go in terms of beauty and "intensity of life", thus also teaching me how "low" our common level of evolution is, how poorly and badly we live.
I really feel like a modern man ended up in the Stone Age among people who die for a broken bone, who dismember each other for a piece of meat and do the kind of things that were absolutely normal back then but are not from our modern perspective.
And so, yes, I think "I want to go back home, as far as I'm done leaving to the people here an image of the world how it could be, of the world I know - even though I cannot prove it - that I come from, I want to leave this horrible place forever and return where my spirit feels home".

I also had the chance to discover that reading Tolkien has little to do with these feelings, as he certainly narrates about other worlds, but they are not always fit to be seen as a potential "home" for homesick individuals...
For instance, I doubt I'd have really liked to live in Beleriand: I'd have probably died soon!  :D
 
Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil. (J.R.R. Tolkien)
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Re: Homesick For Another Place - how many have this view?

Post by Lúthien »

While I think I know what that homesick feeling is about, I have never interpreted it as a desire to truly and wholly being in some other place or time. 

I would rather say it is a mixture of several different things:
  • a longing to be whole, or to (re-)integrate a part of me that had been neglected;
  • a longing for a mode of living that includes everything that “neglected part” stands for, but that is hard or impossible to accomplish in society as it exists now;
  • a longing to be able to connect to others and to build relationships that include recognition of the above
This is in any case how it would work out in practice. I realise very well that I’m also a child of my time and would find it awfully hard to live in another period in history - and in that sense I absolutely value that what is good of even the modern culture, despite all its flaws.

However, the true undercurrent, the driving force of all that is yet something else that’s extremely hard to put into words. I mean that sense of a “true home”, or of “being exiled”: as far as I can put a finger on it, it might be a longing for “being in faultless contact / harmony with the universe / including other minds - or, maybe, being part of one mind”.
I’ve felt that sense (though only in watered-down form) in many other people and stories - for instance, it’s very clearly present in many of Clifford Simak’s stories, and of course in Tolkien. 

And another side of that same feeling is the flowing-together of “the Numinous”: the sense of awe when confronted with the mystery of the infinite universe, and at the same time feeling utterly at home in that.  

PS - Imaginal presence as how we discuss elsewhere comes quite close to that state of being.
 
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Re: Homesick For Another Place - how many have this view?

Post by drcyd »

My understanding of the Gnostic position is that we here on earth all come from another place. That place is called the Pleroma, the Fullness of God. We are implanted with a desire to return home to the Pleroma. This desire is purposeful so that we do not become enamored of this material world and to give us the reassurance that we are going to a better place when we die.

My book, The Gnostic Gospel Illuminated, teaches that we (and all other living creatures) were sent here to impart the life force to the otherwise dead material world that was created by an Aeon's Fall from the aeonic realm (the Pleroma). This is the battle between a cold material-only world and we living creatures who carry the life force and love of the Pleroma into this world. 

This earth is a sad and deathly place. It is entirely understandable to be sad and disappointed with our lives here. Our lives here are a never ending war against forces and principalities that would rather the earth remain cold and lifeless. The tragedy is that we forget our mission is one of love, life, and redemption as we do battle with the haters and adopt their strategies.

We can all look forward with joy to returning to the Pleroma, where there is no death or destruction. In my vision of the afterlife, everyone we have ever known will be there to joyfully welcome us home, even our dogs and cats. 
To read more about this, visit my Gnostic blog where it's all detailed out.  Here is a link to an article on this very subject, called "Yearning for the Pleroma."
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Re: Homesick For Another Place - how many have this view?

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

Lúthien wrote: Sat Jan 09, 2021 11:41 am [...] And another side of that same feeling is the flowing-together of “the Numinous”: the sense of awe when confronted with the mystery of the infinite universe, and at the same time feeling utterly at home in that.  

PS - Imaginal presence as how we discuss elsewhere comes quite close to that state of being.
What you say above and in your list makes sense.

I guess one of the reasons I have periodic trouble understanding it and require "comprehension resets" may be partly due to the way it's is usually expressed ("longing for somewhere else") and the fact that as a shaman and a therianthrope, I never had the 'neglected' part - I can just switch cognitive modes.

Part of it may also be that I can "afford to": as someone on the government dole I don't have to "go along to get along" with coworkers or an employer, and if I don't like someone I'm likely to just directly come out with "I don't like you", like I did with that 'Earendil'-dude in T-e back in the spring of 2019. I usually don't do that here, but that's just due to common courtesy - and lack of motive, most of the time.
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Re: Homesick For Another Place - how many have this view?

Post by Lúthien »

Meneldur Olvarion wrote: Sun Jan 10, 2021 5:53 pm (...) I guess one of the reasons I have periodic trouble understanding it and require "comprehension resets" may be partly due to the way it's is usually expressed ("longing for somewhere else")
I think so, too. I've often seen it expressed in a somewhat victimised way, which can be rather, let's say, annoying, e.g. ("look at poor me here, I deserve so much better!"). I'd think that if you feel you belong to better world, the first thing to do is to behave like that  $) .
And as long as there is no way to go where you want to go, better make the best of the current situation.
 
Meneldur Olvarion wrote: Sun Jan 10, 2021 5:53 pm Part of it may also be that I can "afford to": as someone on the government dole I don't have to "go along to get along" with coworkers or an employer, and if I don't like someone I'm likely to just directly come out with "I don't like you", like I did with that 'Earendil'-dude in T-e back in the spring of 2019. I usually don't do that here, but that's just due to common courtesy - and lack of motive, most of the time.

I think that if both sides take some effort to make things clear, it usually works quite well :)
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Re: Homesick For Another Place - how many have this view?

Post by Lúthien »

drcyd wrote: Sun Jan 10, 2021 2:15 pm We can all look forward with joy to returning to the Pleroma, where there is no death or destruction. In my vision of the afterlife, everyone we have ever known will be there to joyfully welcome us home (...)
Some, especially older, Catholics referred to dying as "stepping out of time"; or, you could say, into a state of timelessness. I kind of like that notion, and though I don't know a lot about the concept of the Pleroma I can imagine timelessness is one of its characteristics as well. Do you know that maybe?
 
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