- Belonging to this world as contrasted with a better or more spiritual one.
“Nina appreciated the summer landscaping job and the time to sink into the sublunary experiences of being outside and working with her hands.”
“Some days my mind is occupied with sublunary thoughts, and I can’t settle into my morning meditation.”
“I can get swept away by my daydreams and forget about my sublunary needs sometimes.”
Latin, late 16th century
Why this word?
“Sublunary” is based on the Latin “sublunaris,” which combines the prefix “sub-,” meaning “beneath,” and “lunary,” meaning “of the moon.” The adjective can be used to describe the often mundane circumstances of the world, in contrast with loftier or more spiritual matters. While wondering about something like what to make for dinner might seem boring in comparison to high-brow debates, the sublunary is what makes the world turn. For example, “The city council asked speakers to limit philosophical discussions so they could quickly get to the sublunary concerns shared by residents.”
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