Sehnsucht describes “an unidentifiable longing or yearning, often for a place or home; missing a place far away that one can identify as their home.” Sehnsucht is a German word with no perfect or direct English translation.
In Jacky Bowring’s book A Field Guide to Melancholy, Jacky explains:
“The term for longing in German is Sehnsucht, combining a typically paradoxical melancholy mix of nostalgia and desire. CS Lewis adopted the word to express a form of spiritual longing throughout his life, from the works of Plato to a longing for God. The conundrum of Sehnsucht is further confounded as Lewis uses it synonymously with joy.”