word

June 2016 (Vol. XXIX, No. 6)

Dear friends ~ Marveling at how very young children accomplish the astonishing feat of language acquisition makes me wonder about the power and meaning of words. The nature of being human is that we need to shape thought into language. The way we use language with each other can either hurt or heal, confound or connect. As inadequate as they may be, words help us attach names to meanings, express and share ideas, and circle round questions together. How do words in turn shape our ideas and beliefs? What does it mean to use culturally laden or gender specific names for God? Do they help us to understand more about God or about ourselves? If various world religions have different words for names of God—the Compassionate One, the Light, the Truth, the Eternal, the Creator—is this more a matter of form than substance, language than meaning? And what is the Word we listen for in the Silence?

The names of God

Among the greatest gifts we have been given are the names of God.
~ Kabir Helminski

It is the nature of a word to reveal what is hidden

It is the nature of a word to reveal what is hidden. The word that is hidden still sparkles in the darkness and whispers in the silence. It entices us to pursue it and to yearn and sigh after it. For it wishes to reveal to us something about God.

~ Meister Eckhart

Words are singularly the most powerful force available to humanity

Words are singularly the most powerful force available to humanity. We can choose to use this force constructively with words of encouragement, or destructively using words of despair. Words have energy and power with the ability to help, to heal, to hinder, to hurt, to harm, to humiliate and to humble.

~ Yehuda Berg

If you talk to him in his language

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.

~ Nelson Mandela

The language of the heart

The language of the lips is easily taught, but who can teach the language of the heart?

~ Mohandas (Mahatma) Gandhi

The pages are still blank

The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible.

~ Vladimir Nabokov

Logos is more than Word

"Logos" is more than "Word." It means the fullest expression of a creative idea in outer manifestation.

~ from THE WORK LIFE by Beryl Pogson

Breaking into the daylight of language

[Humans became human] by breaking into the daylight of language—whether by good fortune or bad fortune, whether by pure chance, the spark jumping the gap because the gap was narrow enough, or by the touch of God, it is not for me to say here.

~ Walker Percy in THE MESSAGE IN THE BOTTLE

Love creates such a language

"The Tamil language is very precise,"
the Tamil poet said.
"There are seven different words
between the English words, 'bud' and 'flower.'"
One would have to live in attentive quiet,
live with the plant,
marveling at each subtle change
to create such a language.
Love creates such a language.

~ from WILD SEEDS by Francis Rothluebber
Wild Seeds
By Francis Rothluebber
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