Do you ever get that sudden, unexplainable urge to… cry?
No? Just me?
Well, this is awkward...
It’s not a sad cry… it’s not happy either. It’s more akin to a deep sense of nostalgia.
I don’t know, maybe it’s because I’m currently listening to Finding Nemo’s soundtrack (that fact it self — how music affects us — is incredibly fascinating as well, but we’ll explore it some other time). Regardless… I sometimes get these strange moments where I’m struck by a profound wistfulness without any apparent trigger (such as music, in this case).
It’s really hard to articulate. But it feels like something calling from afar. Beckoning from the farthest reaches of my being. Something that cannot be ignored. Something true and powerful and beautiful and urgent and, somehow… it makes me sad.
But it feels... good?
I’m sorry, this is very challenging to convey! (I think music, indeed, does a better job at communicating the complexity of these feelings than words do).
These moments are usually brief and sporadic. But they are powerful reminders of the unfathomable depths of the psyche, and the inherent mystery that lies therein. I have no idea where these feelings "come from", but then again, I have no idea where anything I do or am “comes from”… It might be easier to understand my ignorance regarding how my heart beats, or how I digest, or even breath. But somehow, we fall under the illusion that we are authoring our thoughts, when in reality, I have no clue where my thoughts “originate”.
Thoughts just flow through “me”…
These sort of poignant moments are reminders of the vast capacity ‘within me’. Of all the potential feelings I can feel at any given moment… of all the memories I ‘have’, yet am not presently aware of. That, if I were to get a phone call right now informing me of the passing of a loved one, the capacity of profound sorrow is here. All of that is here… but somehow hidden, dormant (cognitive science has some very interesting stuff to say about this through concepts such as ‘relevance realization’).
And when these small yet pungent instances of melancholy drift by like some familiar aroma carried by a stray breeze, I can’t help but feel a sense of profound reverence for the mystery of being — for the well of experience that I am… not to mention, being astonished by the sheer experience of experience. By just how these feelings feel. And to that, the utility of words falls away like thin paper wrappings.
As one Ludwig Wittgenstein would (perhaps) say: “That of which we cannot speak, we must pass over in silence”.
I invite you now to share your own experiences. Have you ever felt a similar wave of unexplainable emotion? What was it like? Maybe together we can gain a broader understanding of such ontological enigmas!
P.S. Here's the Finding Nemo Song I was listening to that I mentioned at the beginning :)