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Observations placeholder

Ritter, Christiane - Moonstruck



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

A Woman in the Polar night – Christiane Ritter

IT IS FULL moon. No central European can have any idea of what this means on the smooth frozen surface of the earth. It is as though we were dissolving in moonlight, as though the moonlight were eating us up. It makes no difference when we go back into the hut under the snow after a moonlight trip. The light seems to follow us everywhere.

One's entire consciousness is penetrated by the brightness; it is as though we were being drawn into the moon itself.

We have been out in the moonlight a great deal, for some pack ice has entered the fiord. A whole iceberg is stranded on the shore in front of our hut. Moving gently with the current and gleaming in the moonlight, the ice floes, piled high with freshly fallen snow, float by our hut.

We stand spellbound and stare. Again and again we climb the moon-shiny mountains to keep watch over the sea. It does not look as though all the pack ice is coming our way.

We cannot escape the brightness. I take it particularly badly, and the hunters maintain that I am moonstruck.

What I would like best of all is to stand all day on the shore, where in the water the rocking ice floes catch and break the light and throw it back at the moon. But the men are very strict with me. They do not let me out of their sight and often keep me under house arrest. And then I lie down in my little room, where the moonlight filters green through the small snowed-up window. Neither the walls of the hut nor the roof of snow can dispel my fancy that I am myself moonlight, gliding along the glittering spines and ridges of the mountains, through the white valleys. . .

The source of the experience

Ritter, Christiane

Concepts, symbols and science items



Sun and Moon

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps