“Not till we are completely lost or turned round — for a man needs only to be turned once with his eyes shut in this world to be lost — do we appreciate the vastness and strangeness of Nature. Every man has to learn the points of the compass again as often as he awakes, whether from sleep or an abstraction. Not until we are lost, in other words, not until we have lost the world, do we begin to find ourselves, and realize where we are and the infinite extent of our relations.”
– Henry David Thoreau
I can get very caught up in the day-to-day stuff of life. It’s easy; there’s a lot of stuff, and some of it is essential. But we can’t be like that all the time. We need to get away from what we know, from time to time, and see the whole world as it is.
This is why I love fantastical stories. I know that isn’t what Thoreau was getting at, but for me, they are a way of getting lost to find your self. Good fantasy and science fiction describe real people (with real flaws and real emotions) in completely unreal situations, helping you to see things in a new way.