“To live an enchanted life is to be challenged, to be awakened, to be gripped and shaken to the core by the extraordinary which lies at the heart of the ordinary. Above all, to live an enchanted life is to fall in love with the world all over again.” ~ The Enchanted Life, Sharon Blackie
Deep in the heart of winter, I have been enjoying the connection with this season by slowing down and taking deep rest. This slowing down has enabled me to catch up on reading, diving into the books that have been stacking up.
One book I’ve had the pleasure of reading over the holidays is “The Enchanted Life – unlocking the magic of the everyday” by Sharon Blackie. The Enchanted Life is Sharon’s second non-fiction book published after the widely acclaimed “If Women Rose Rooted”.
Sharon states “The enchanted life 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. It is creative, intuitive, imaginative. It thrives on work that has heart and meaning. It loves wild things, but returns to an enchanted home and garden. It respects the instinctive knowledge and playfulness of children, and relished story, poetry and art.”
This is a timely book asking “What is Enchantment?”, why is it important right now, what is involved to truly inhabit our living world and how to explore the magic of the Everyday.
Sharon is a storyteller intertwining her personal story with examples of others’ personal journeys to enchantment. Sharon has developed a deep sense of place & belonging over her life’s journey and this book explores these themes.
The Enchanted Life is an uplifting magical read reminding us of what really matters in life. This book can guide us in times of unease and disconnection. It’s a call to reconnect with the world and with nature, guiding us to explore and establish our sense of belonging.
Part personal journey, part collective stories, part storytelling & myth, part guidebook. The Enchanted Life gives us the tools for exploring enchantment and directing us to a more connected whole-hearted life.
I enjoyed the journey to the windy wilds of Scotland and the picturesque landscapes of Ireland. Sharon shared her experiences of healing and rewilding, finding her place in the land she was called to settle in. The process and ideas truly inspire.
My holidays have been a time of deep rest and reading. This book inspired me to get outside to explore my local area. Over the holidays I spent time walking the local part of the South West Coastal Path. To connect in more deeply to the landscape. I walked a new stretch of the coastal path that I haven’t journeyed along before, and I explored the ancient footpaths inland connecting local villages & communities to the coast.
“It is the intention that is the important thing – that’s what transforms a walk into a pilgrimage.” ~ Caro Woods, Artist
The Enchanted Life explores our connection with the nature world, the need for wilderness, the notion of embodiment, how to cultivate a mythic imagination, knowing our place and learning to belong, developing kinship and community spirit. This is an invitation to find our true calling.
“For me, calling has nothing to do with religious beliefs; it is quite simply the work of a lifetime – it’s about living life as if it mattered. It’s beautiful work, because it’s not so much about doing and accomplishing as it is about developing and expressing a vision for your life. And one of the things that is forgotten in a task-driven culture which has no appreciation of calling is that developing a vision takes time. Sometimes, it takes a lifetime – for it to emerge, and for it then to be developed and expressed in all the ways that are possible for us. Because to express our calling is to allow ourselves to uniquely express one mode of being, one facet of the creative life force of the universe – whatever you might conceive that to be.” ~ The Enchanted Life, Sharon Blackie
I found this book inspiring and accessible. There are tasks and prompts at the end of each chapter to encourage the reader to explore the topics more deeply and give ideas of how the ideas can be incorporated into our daily life. It is comforting to know that developing our calling can take time, maybe even over the whole of our lifetime.
I would highly recommend this book. It’s magical, inspiring, relatable and is a guide to re-finding ourselves.
“I believe that enchantment is an attitude of mind which can be cultivated, a way of approaching the world which anyone can learn to adopt: the enchanted life is possible for everybody.” ~ Sharon Blackie