Every so often, I will feature a great channel that I think everyone should know about. For this week, I’m talking about a unique, creative and awe-inspiring channel called The Dictionary Of Obscure Sorrows.
The Dictionary Of Obscure Sorrows is a fairly unknown channel that makes incredibly inspiring, thoughtful and philosophically profound videos. Paired with great editing and unique film work, I’m surprised this channel isn’t more popular. Started as an equally great website of the same name, The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows is, well, pretty much what it says. Created by John Koenig, a writer and graphic designer, The Dictionary is a collection of words, created by John, that describes emotions, experiences, and sorrows that there currently isn’t a word for but there really should be.
On this journey, John has tackles some incredibly philosophically profound feelings, leaving you with a sense of wonder that someone could so accurately describe one event or another in your life, and wrap it up in one word. And although the words John creates are just from his mind, and aren’t actual words, I hope writers will start using them, as they seriously need to be integrated into our language. And, if you research a little, you can see that he actually uses other languages, mythology and more to craft his perspicuous words.
To illustrate that, here’s some examples of some words he’s only written definitions for, not created a video, on his website:
Lachesism – n. the desire to be struck by disaster—to survive a plane crash, to lose everything in a fire, to plunge over a waterfall—which would put a kink in the smooth arc of your life, and forge it into something hardened and flexible and sharp, not just a stiff prefabricated beam that barely covers the gap between one end of your life and the other
Gnossienne – n. a moment of awareness that someone you’ve known for years still has a private and mysterious inner life, and somewhere in the hallways of their personality is a door locked from the inside, a stairway leading to a wing of the house that you’ve never fully explored—an unfinished attic that will remain maddeningly unknowable to you, because ultimately neither of you has a map, or a master key, or any way of knowing exactly where you stand.
Astrophe – n. a hypothetical conversation that you compulsively play out in your head—a crisp analysis, a cathartic dialogue, a devastating comeback—which serves as a kind of psychological batting cage where you can connect more deeply with people than in the small ball of everyday life, which is a frustratingly cautious game of change-up pitches, sacrifice bunts, and intentional walks.
As you can see, these words and definitions are truly incredible. They make you think, and in a way you never have before, about your life’s experiences. And the video series that John has created to go along with the website only enhances the experience. With great animation, unique videos and intriguing new ways of filming, The Dictionary Of Obsure Sorrows’ channel and their videos is an extraordinary experience to watch. Watch the video above for my favorite of his videos, or click HERE to go to his channel!