Say What: Language?

I have being spending a lot of time with language, both in my own native tough, English, and studying basic French to pass my language requirements for University. The more I dive into both of these worlds, studying these two languages, the more I realize that our world is extremely limited because of the limited functions that these languages can function for us. Let me explain in more detail. The more complex our world becomes, our languages is still in a constant rate of “static” use, and has not devolved enough to keep pace. An example that occurred on the street today when a passerby noted something about another stranger who was standing on the corner waiting to cross the street. The fellow passing said, “You’re looking choppy today…” The fellow standing, waiting to cross the street said, “Hay, shut your hole Wonder-Bread.”

Now this exchange of words really got me thinking. On one level, even I have no true idea what both said to each other, and I thought I was “up” on the lingo thing…, but for some reason, could a complement be turned into a insult, and vice versa? Two strangers’ crossing paths, one says something totally out of the blue, and the other reacts with the most powerful emotions, like a dynamic duo of weather systems clashing, and the result is thunder and lighting.

Then I remembered some readings out of my text on “Nonviolent Communication: a Language of Life” by Marchall B. Rosenberg, who says that even words that mean positive things can have a negative, adverse effect on certain people simply because of the limited use of language itself. When using Nonviolent Communication, we are to observe, then evaluate when communicating; however, some positive words carry a dual meaning, and should not be used. So we imply things through worlds that carry both positive, neutral and negative feelings. Our language is created by history, from ancient people who were both simple and ignorant, and as our knowledge increases, our words stay behind, so we therefore become trapped with such limited uses for expressions, feelings and meanings.

I think the answer is clear: invent new words. We need more words to add to our vocabulary so that our lexicon of new ideas can flourish. Forget the printing-press, dictionaries people and linguists, we need more words to fix this problem!

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