What’s In A Word?
Greetings. Today’s post is a more permanent reminder, to accompany the ever-changing “update” found on the home page of this blog, that this, and my other blog, plus my Twitter account were invaded by an unwelcome guest. I know when it happened and considering we live in a world of technology that expands at extreme rates, it’s easy for me to understand how easy it may be for some who have the inclination to “hack” into blogs, accounts and other places of the virtual variety.
It’s not a worry for me, but please do keep in mind that some content seemingly produced and placed on the “interwebs” may not be mine as the major contributor of either blog or Twitter account holder of @creasesinger. Sara Daniels contributes, so the same also applies to her. For those familiar with either/both of my blogs, it’s business as usual. Things in my personal world ebb and flow. It’s rather a natural state and quite normal when seen as a whole. For those who are new or more recent readers (and listeners/watchers-AV is a part of the mix that creates the big picture), my personal “self-expressions” may appear fractured or “choppy” at first. Considering I’ve been sharing on the internet for almost 13 years in various ways, it’s understandable.
Moving on; there are often times when a single word has more than one definition. Recently, a discussion of the English word “respect” occurred in one of my circles and it caused me to visit my good friend, the dictionary. Here is the Dictionary.com definitions of the word “respect”. When the conversation started, I was thinking in terms of the origins of the word and stated that it first meant “to look back.” We “speculate” and see things in “circumspect” and wear “spectacles”. Sometimes we even make “spectacles” of ourselves. Originally, the Latin word was “respectus”. In modern day English, however, it is most often first thought of as the linked definition indicates. We should “respect” the meaning of words.
It’s been proven throughout history, and I’m sure you can think of some examples in your everyday life as well, that simple words can cause a great divide. Sometimes words can even start wars. Words can be used to hurt another. Words can be misunderstood and cause divorces, anger, hate, and much, much worse. Words are how most of us communicate. Sign language may not be spoken “words”, but language is the key word. With any form of “language”, interpretation can very easily break down and degrade to the point of utter disaster.
The reason “words” have become the subject of this post is because it became evident that even one, single word, “respect”, caused a simple conversation among friends to escalate into something that very nearly created a divide that could not be mended. It wasn’t that any party was attempting to do anything but communicate. I’ll be an advocate for communication until I breathe my last breath, so there’s no finger pointing or judgement implied on my end. The problem was so simple, we didn’t even know there was a problem until it was almost too late to repair.
The conversation involved different people, born and raised in different places. When words in any language are used to communicate, they are always heard and perceived in the manner in which the person who takes them in and processes them was taught since birth to interpret them. Often, even a single word can be internalized by each individual person as meaning something very different. When words are added around the original “single” word and context comes into play, well, the conversation can take a very sharp turn toward “bad” and no person in the conversation is actually to blame. If you think about it for just a minute, it happens all the time; everyday. We tend to believe that those we are conversing with have the exact same understanding of each word we use. We take the time to communicate, but the communication is received as something, often times, completely different than the origin.
In short, any word that proceeds out me may not be received as intended, therefore, I ask that those who have attempted any sort of communication with me as a person remember that I will never be bothered or annoyed if I am asked to clarify or restate something in any conversation, on any level. Words help us come together, but they can also destroy. Internally, words can linger as hurt for the entirety of a person’s life and the deliverer of those words may never have even known the words sent forth could do such a thing, let alone be the cause of pain.
It also became clear at one point that some parties were discussing things on one level, while others were using the same words and seemingly participating on that same level, but as it happened, the conversation was taking place on more than one level and rifts created weren’t discovered right away. To those who hope to “elevate the conversation”, I feel it prudent to remind them that it is wise to always keep in mind that all conversations as they “elevate” do not simply exist on one level. In other “words”, the more “elevated” the conversation, as many like to think of it, the more levels must be addressed at once. The “ground level” conversation which was the origin of the communication does not disappear and it is the “foundation level” that the “elevated conversation” stands upon. Without every level, the conversation becomes fruitless and lacks the result many believe an “elevated conversation” will produce.
It’s okay to call me a nerd of grand proportion after reading this post. I do like to “get deep” as some have described it, but in essence, it’s just me walking around observing things and sharing thoughts. I do take the time to “look back” and I, personally, do strive to bear in mind that “words” are not the entirety of any conversation. Even if other people take offense when I ask for clarification, I will still continue to do it, because I know that a “conversation” as we know it to be, involves more than just one party.
Until there comes such a time that “words” aren’t even necessary and we all have one single awareness, hence “conversation” should be changed to “Universal understanding” in terms of “words”, mankind will continue having disputes brought about by “words”. Is there a “Universal understanding”? To answer in human words on one level, “yes”. On other levels, we are still working and it takes patience and time. As the speed of human communication methods get faster and faster, so too does the amount increase of humans who get left behind and out of the conversations on almost every level.
I, for one, do not have it in me to leave masses of people behind simply because mankind believes it has the authority and knowledge to create life on Earth; then turn around and leave that life behind, scrambling in the dust, fighting for scraps and contending with the wolves with ever decreasing resources to survive. As I’ve stated in at least one previous post, life is a gift and having the gift to create it as humans should also include the ability to sustain that life. I trust in my heart that the right thing to do is remain grounded in the basic “conversation”, physically standing along side those who barely eek out an existence, all the while fully aware and actively engaged in what is called the “elevated conversation”. I trust in love and though “words” aren’t necessary on one level, as a human, they are the gifts, if used properly that help unify. It is not for me to decide who should get left behind, so until I become aware that it’s time to stop, I will not simply look upon another human in any circumstance and assume that person is worthless.
I am who I am and though being the person I was born to be makes other people find me “weird”, “strange”, and use an entire dictionary full of words in attempts at causing me to feel shame or guilt or gain some advantage over me, I will be exactly the same as I have always been, no matter what “words” or actions are used by others to hurt me or try to change me. There is nothing in me that intentionally causes other people hurt or suffering and I will stand by that through any judgement. The only time I would ever use any sort of force would be if another life or my own were in danger.
Some humans were built to run right into the fire if life is at stake. Sometimes, those of us who do that naturally, will also stay in the fire and sort through the rubble to make sure no one gets left behind. Sometimes, of those who will do that, a few will also be the first to draw fire so that the rest can reach their destination unseen and unharmed. We all have our “thing” and if you know what your “thing” is, please don’t let the “words” and judgments of other humans make you feel worthless or less. None of us are alone, no matter how hard the rest of the world tries to convince you otherwise. Someone always cares and while my words may not mean much on some levels, I would not put them out into open forum of the internet if I wouldn’t stand behind them right until the moment I die. Don’t let words hurt you and never think you are alone. I care, at the very least, one human cares and I assure you, there are plenty of others out there who are right there with me.
Anything is possible. Words can mean many different things, but communication can achieve clarity with patience and effort.
Peace – Mia – firstname.lastname@example.org and @creasesinger
We are and we know love.