Saturday Snuggle Read
The Enchanted Life: unlocking the magic of the everyday
By Sharon Blackie
On Sale February 27, 2018
The title caught my attention and I knew I had to read this book. I am on a quest to celebrate the art of ordinary moments. I believe in my soul that there is magic in the everyday, if we only take the time to see it. And, those thoughts are what Sharon Blackie illustrates beautifully in her newest book, The Enchanted Life: Unlocking the Magic of the Everyday. Reflecting back, I almost do not know where to start because she covered so much in the pages of this book. She opens the book with the story of two women walking in the woods, one distracted by modern technologies and business, and one fully present. This illustration captured my attention immediately. Blackie defines enchantment as to fully participate in the world, to be open both to its transparency and its mystery. She discussed our path to disenchantment from childhood to adulthood. As children we are open to wonder and discovery, but to be considered fully adult and to be accepted as such we must fit within cultural norms which do not include enchantment. I love the way children play, with creativity and awe. The books that are written for children that allow them to escape in to worlds of wonder. The way they are enamored with chasing after a mystery that sparks their curiosity. Why are play, discovery, and fairy tales only for children? Blackie encourages the reader to get lost in a story of fantasy and delight. She argues that, “if we can create a shift in the fundamental ways in which we see and approach the world, so that we come to feel again that sense of wonder, awe and belonging that we felt when we were children, then we will dramatically enhance the quality of our own lives and increase our sense of wellbeing.” She travels from there, to our place in the living world. She says that, “because enchantment, by my definition, has nothing to do with fantasy, or escapism, or magical thinking: it is founded on a vivid sense of belongingness to a rich and many-layered world; a profound and whole-hearted participation in the adventure of life.” It’s about being fully engaged in a place, in a community. She encourages us to slow down and truly find our place in our home, in the ecology of place. I loved the way she discussed belonging as it relates to our sense of connectedness to the ecology of our place, to how well we really know our surroundings. She believes that our disconnection from nature plays in to our increased levels of anxiety and depression. In fact, she lists as one of the four major components of enchantment to be, “a sense of fully participating in a living world-a feeling of belonging rather than separation.”
This beautiful book is full of highlights, and is one I will not only continue to reflect upon, but go back to often. There are beautiful prompts and questions throughout the book to help readers re connect to their sense of wonder and enchantment. I highly recommend this read, as someone who values play and is on a quest for beauty-this book truly spoke to my heart. I want to reconnect with my childhood sense of awe and magic. I will continue to build blanket forts, I will spend more time getting to know-really know the ecology of my home, and I will curl up with a fairy tale tonight.
I received a copy of this book from NetGalley, but the thoughts are all mine.