wildhood welcome

Share what you have gathered wildly.

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Missoula, MT 59802

Wildhood is kinship of the wild in all people, places, and things.


Welcome the wild.


Mark Douglas

Wilderness clearance indicates wildhood. Wildhood is the composite of qualities that resonate socioculturally and ecologically with somebody. Wildhood is the state of being attuned to wildness. Wildhood is a mood that comes over someone that is used to wildness. I have a feeling that wildhood will be better understood with Merleau-Ponty's notion of "wild being". For now, what I have to work with is primarily Heidegger and the secondary sources of interpretation.  

To get at wildhood I need to explain what it means for somebody to "be-in-the-world" and I need to explain worldhood. I think I made an adequate effort on explaining worldhood and to a lesser degree, being-in-the-world in other posts here on wildhood.net and over at the darkerwater blog.  

I have a couple goals for the concept of wildhood. First, I like to use wildhood to show that even though wilderness means different things to different people and that it is a fluid concept, there are likely to be some areas of overlap among different ways that wilderness matters that can be empirically discovered. With that discovery, I want to use the mutual resonance of wildhood to instill greater concordance among conflicting perspectives of wilderness. On a tangent, I believe this concept is applicable to other understandings of place. The reason why it applies to landscape meaning or sense of place is that wildhood is aimed at discovering the way the world is disclosed or unveiled to people in their involvement with the world. The -hood of wildhood could be laterally considered the -ness of wildness. (Note: I'm not quite ready to take on "wilderhood" but I see it rising on a distant horizon for this line of thought.) To tack the -hood onto wild signifies that what I'm after is the human dimension of the essence of the wild. 

Bracketing the essence of the wild into the human dimension is a deliberate limitation. Some of my writing up until now has indicated that I will be taking the "posthuman turn". (Just using these quotation marks reeks of a pretentious affect, and I'm absolutely trying to "keep it real".)

Don't be evil.

Don't be evil.

I think that in order to keep this project in the realm of realistic possibility (and sanity) I'll postpone that turn until later when I'll bring forth the posthuman dimensions of natural resources (PhDNR - it'll rock our worlds). All this is to say that I'm aware of the discourse around posthumanism, speculative realism versus correlationism, and object oriented ontology. In fact, I gladly make use of Harman's Quadruple Object to get at essence in terms of the essential qualities of the human dimension of the wild. 

What do these essential qualities hang with? What's in the neighborhood of wildhood? I've been through this a bit with my post on the fourfold. I need to take another stab at it for the sake of clarity. For anything, there are four quadrants to consider. I follow the configuration used in Integral Ecology. I also make it my own and I bring in Harman's thinking in Quadruple Object . I especially like Harman's symbolic use of playing card suits. Both of those are founded on Heidegger's fourfold.

To get four quadrants you need to draw at least two lines. Let's make use of the X,Y axis convention. On the X axis you have veilance. It ranges from complete veilance in the lefthand X direction to complete surveillance in the righthand X direction. At X = 0, there is the threshold of disclosure or unveiling. X = 0 is a janus-faced positon. Using Heideggerian terminology, veilance relates to handiness in the sense that the veiled end of the continuum is pure readiness-to-hand and the surveyed end is pure presence-at-hand. 

If the horizontal, X-axis is veilance, the Y-axis is stance or -sistence. Going above the X-axis on the Y-axis moves toward subsistence while below the X-axis going down the Y-axis moves toward consistence. In this way we have four quadrants interrelating veilance and stance. To connect this to Harman's scheme, note that the difference between reality and sensuality is the difference between veilance and surveilance while the difference between objects and qualities is the difference between subsistence and consistence. The way this maps onto Heidegger's fourfold is that Earth would be in the upper left most quadrant at the fulfillment of veilance and subsistence. Earth is the most subsisting and most veiled. Sky is at the extreme lower right as the fulfillment of surveillance and consistence. Sky is the most consisting and surveilled. Mortals are in the upper right quadrant as the fulfillment of surveillance and subsistence. Mortals are most subsisting and most surveilled. Divinities are in the lower left quadrant as the fulfillment of veilance and subsistence. Divinities are the most consisting and most veiled. Below is the fourfold interpretation offered in Integral Ecology how world is discovered (left) and how the world is disclosed (right).