I recently discovered that I sometimes feel this strange "mirrored-eerieness", a tension that is in expectation of something good, even glorious. Whereas "eerie" tends to connotatively denote "premonition of something horrible", this "mirrored-eerie" would more connotatively describe a "premonition of rapture". It's like an ambigious "near-spiritual" experience.

I think, like "eerie", it would mostly serve as an adjective, but also as a noun that describes a feeling, like "terror", or "joy". Perhaps like "eerie", it could take on the form "____(i)ly". Otherwise, maybe "____ified".

From the examples I'll give, it's pretty flexible.

Example 1:

Alone in the chapel, the room became warm, the candles seemed to burn brighter, the stillness turned ________: soul and senses seemed at once to heighten and separate from the earth as though some apparition were moments away.

Example 2:

She stared into space, feeling ________, slowly disconnecting from the world passing by.

Example 3:

________: the kind of feeling you'd get if some holy spirit entered the room unannounced, or the soul of a lost loved one sat beside you.

I usually get this strange feeling listening to music, especially, if not exclusively, music that uses the "Lydian" mode--the "brightest major scale possible". It's not commonly used in popular music, simply because it just seems off. Ridiculously bright.

To understand the feeling of what I mean, here's two songs from Radiohead. Radiohead uses C Lydian a few times. Here it is in "Codex" at 3:44, and here it is in "All I Need" at 2:45. I started both clips a few seconds behind for context.

Even if you aren't a music theorist, you can just sense there's something about those parts that seems abnormally bright, heaven-gazing. The effect maintains the tension of "eerie", but the implication of something heavenly and not hellish.

"Anticipation" could work, but it seems weak, and could be used in either a positive or negative context. "Wonder" seems like it could word, but it lacks the notion of tension. "Excitement" is another close one, as it seems to denote tension, and usually positive tension (due respect to Bloc Party), so it's a possible candidate, I think. Either there is a word out there that connotatively merges the two ideas, one can be made, or a pre-existing one can be extended to include the merging of ideas.

If by a new word, "foreawe" seems like it could work. Literally, "before awe".

The silence and foreawe would soon give way to a glorious sight.


Suddenly the world felt farther from me: I stood foreawed, feeling like I would be taken from this earth to heaven itself.

Any suggestions? Thanks so much, -Jon

  • What did you take? So the word can be a nonce word, ie., created ad hoc for your specific need, that wouldn't be found in a dictionary? If that's the case, you seem imaginatively creative enough to bang two words together, maybe sprinkle on some extra morphemes to taste.
    – Zebrafish
    Commented Mar 25, 2018 at 17:14
  • "What did you take"? --- I'm not sure how to answer that. Like, what English classes, what words to arrive at my new word, or ...? Anyway, I'm not adverse to new words should they need to exist, but I was wondering if there was already one that described what I was going for. For all I care, it could be a foreign word, or made up of foreign morphemes.
    – Werewoof
    Commented Mar 25, 2018 at 17:20
  • 1
    My first instinct is to look into the words used in the different religious and spiritual traditions to describe states of emotion or consciousness, either that or Hippy poetry, like Ginsberg or something. Or just get high and flick through a dictionary.
    – Zebrafish
    Commented Mar 25, 2018 at 17:28
  • Could you rephrase that to drop most of it, please? I was about to ask whether you were more interested in the language or your own psychological state when Zebrafish put it more bluntly. Is "mirrored-eerieness" a new phrase of your own or are you quoting someone earlier, please? Logically, how could "mirrored-(anything)“ be “in expectation” and how does “eerie” denote “premonition”? What d’you think “connotatively” adds here? How would "mirrored” or “eerieness" or “premonition” evoke “rapture” or a ‘”near-spiritual" experience’ or anything similar? Commented Apr 7, 2018 at 21:07
  • @RobbieGoodwin: Absent any confirmation or clarification from the OP, I guess that they put the words “mirrored” and “eeriness” together to try to construct a meaning that’s something like “ominous, but in a good way”.  You should probably think of “mirrored-” as being like “anti-”  (as in “anti-pattern”) or “reverse” (as in “reverse mortgage”), so (IMHO) it’s fairly straightforward to think that the opposite of “eerie” would be “promising of good things to come”. Commented May 6, 2018 at 5:56

1 Answer 1


You may want to consider using sublime, though it does not quite capture all that you suggest. Unfortunately the meaning of this term has shifted over the years. In the Romantic era, philosophers like Edmund Burke and Schopenhauer reserved the sublime for truly awesome, even terror-inducing experiences. It was held to be distinct from the "beautiful". Today however the term, at least in everyday usage, has the much more watered down meaning of "elevated" or "refined" experiences.

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