The land as a dictionary

Photo by Marci Takacs on Unsplash

Words forge identities through stories, memories, and metaphors.
These ancient sounds weave realities with different pronunciations and meanings, create and destroy perceptions, ideas, and visions.

Dialects are living systems, evolving along with culture and day to day activities. But the first layer of language is the land. The most ancient root of all these sounds we create to communicate love or hate is a direct reverberation of our surrounding landscape. We use the local wind and air flowing through our vocal cords to reproduce sound vibrations. We are essentially a landscape speaking to itself.

Natural forms and its cyclical interactions create unique and singular rich environments full of immanent consciousness flows. In the Indigenous world view, all is sacred and alive, every rock, river, cloud, or wind.
Every place is full of wisdom and agency. All landscapes are dynamic systems of life.

In verbal, written languages, like the ones using the contemporary Latin alphabet, the original connection to the land was severed, separating sounds from their original nature and place, creating space for out of context abstractions. Our dictionaries became printed dogmas, sometimes restraining the living flow of the language system that should move with the place's rhythms.

But the places kept speaking through us in subtle ways. The stone whispers became mute, but we still hear the bird songs, wind through trees, or the rain falling.
In our raw sounds like moans, screams, hummings, or silences, we make when neat and organized words are not enough to describe our experience. Those primal melodies that resonate straight from the heart liberate us from the confinements of grammatical structure.
We howl, whisper, and cry from love or despair. We shriek, wail, or laugh out of the intensity of being porous to the living experience.

Let us again connect to the land as a dictionary, remembering the root lexicon embedded in nature. Let the place you are in be the reference, receive the information that emerges, the meaning flows, uses, and origins of living experiences — not listed in alphabetical order — but sourced in a deep, complex, and layered ancient system authority.
The living meanings emerging from the landscape, once heard, re-connect us to the cosmos, helping us remember our true place.

What poetic meanings emanate from your natural surroundings?

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Journeying 🌿 between inner and outer landscapes, remembering ancient earth practices, radical presence, active listening, ecopsychology, art and writing.

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Sofia Batalha

Sofia Batalha

Journeying 🌿 between inner and outer landscapes, remembering ancient earth practices, radical presence, active listening, ecopsychology, art and writing.

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