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Charles Williams on Ritual Significance

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Even now, when, as a general rule, the human body is not supposed to mean anything, there are moments when it seems, in spite of ourselves, packed with significance…A hand lighting a cigarette is the explanation of everything; a foot stepping from a train is the rock of all existence…A finger pointing is quite capable of seeming not only a significant finger, but a ritual finger; an evocative finger; not only a finger of meaning, but a finger of magic. Two light dancing steps by a girl may (if one is in that state) appear to be what the Schoolmen were trying to express; they are (only one cannot quite catch it) an intellectual statement of beatitude. But two quiet steps by an old man may seem like the very speech of hell. Or the other way round. Youth and age have nothing to do with it…ordered movement, ritual, is natural to men.

Taken from “Witchcraft” by Charles Williams.


Written by KarlH

January 29, 2011 at 5:21 am