Rebecca Marshall

The sublime is a dizzying notion. Feeling that combination of awe, joy, terror and the knowledge that you can’t really grasp what you’re experiencing, really does make you feel alive. It’s interesting that this surge of life in our veins happens through experiencing things that also usually make us aware of our insignificance. Just as freedom can feel binding, perhaps insignificance can feel uplifting.  ‘The rude magnificence of nature’ is an abundant source of the sublime; we are often met with things that are hard to get our minds around- such as the ubiquitous and enduring quality of trees or the vastness of the oceans. Infinite scale and time are hard for us to comprehend; everything about our lives has a beginning and an end; just as we grapple with the idea of non-existence we also struggle with accepting permanent existence. How can something exist if it was not created?
There are so many questions we ask. Our curiosity and desire for satisfaction and comfort lead us to things like religion, science, philosophy and art; we give ourselves a purpose.  We won’t receive the answers to our questions, but I am quite glad of it, because I enjoy asking them.

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