Thinking and Things

We experience the physical world around us through our five senses. Through our imagination and our intelligence, we recall, organize, conceptualize, and meditate. What we meditate upon is never shapeless or filled with alien emotion—it is filled with all the precise earthly things that we have ever encountered and all of our responses to them. The task of the meditation is to put disorder into order. No one could think, without first living among things. No one would need to think, without the initial profusion of perceptual experience.

–Mary Oliver, A Poetry Handbook, pg 105

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