(photo courtesy of Wikipedia)
“No civilisation ever became great on knowledge alone. Indeed it is the imaginative dimension of civilisations which gives them distinction. What would ancient Greece be without its tragedians, its Parthenon, its Homeric epics? What would ancient Egypt be without its pyramids, its temples? Imagination dreams what that which knowledge makes real. It could be said that imagination is the porto-reality. A people can only create what they can imagine. If in some mysterious way we fall short of the ancients, it may be because we have long ceased to cultivate, to the highest degree, the fruits of the imagination, of the spirit. That despairing cry from the Bible should always haunt us. “For lack of vision my people perish.” . . . How do we awaken imagination? How do we awaken vision? One of the ways, passed down to us with cunning simplicity by our ancestors, is storytelling.”
Ben Okri, The Mystery Feast: Thoughts on Storytelling, “Under the Sun: a meditation on stories, notes to a modern storyteller” (Claireview Books Ltd, 2015, pp. 14-15).