The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows by John Koenig


The word ‘sadness’ originally meant ‘fullness.’ To be filled to the brim with some intensity
of experience. It’s not about despair, or distraction, or controlling how you’re supposed to feel. It’s about awareness. Setting the focus to infinity and taking it
all in, joy and grief all at once. Feeling the world as it is, the world as it could be. The unknown and the unknowable closeness and distance and trust and the passage of time. And all the others around you, who are each
going through the same thing. The Romans called it Lacrimae Rerum, ‘the
tears of things.’ I call them ‘Obscure Sorrows.’

Daniel Ostrander

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