Words are only labels.
- Author Stacey T Pollock
- Published July 20, 2008
- Word count 849
What is a word but a label that we use in order to communicate in our world?
What is a word, a phrase, a sentence but a creation within our world in which to communicate with another, who in turn understands us through the process of stimulated repetitiveness?
We learn words in our world from a very young age and continue each day adding to our dictionary of knowledge called the brain. Each word learnt is adjoined often by an impulse or stimulated interaction directed by an outside source. How would we then categorize such communication as language except to call it creative interaction?
Think about how words evolve within our world, firstly made from sounds and then built up into words, then into more complex structures to order our life and better understand the other people around us. The real question is, do we really understand them or are we living in a world of miscommunication?
One thing is for sure a word is merely a label. It can be utilized to label an object or thing, something that has no emotional or feeling representation in our world, but merely a direct representation. For example:
That is a ‘tree’.
This is a ‘hat’.
These are ‘people’.
This would say that physical objects can be well communicated within our world without much problem, except for the instance between two differing languages which can be directed by physical stimuli. What about emotions and feelings? How are these two completely non-physical components communicated within our world?
Firstly, let’s look at the word, ‘love’. If you were to ask a group of people to justify their meaning of the word love in a single page essay, no two people would write the exact same words. Love is yet one word but with so many differing meanings and feelings that every single person has his/her own individual understanding and context in which to utilize it.
Harry walked down the road hand in hand with Sally and he whispered the words ‘I love you’ in her ears. What is Harry implying when he says ‘I love you?’ in this instance? Yes, immediately most would say that it should be clear, but love is not a word with a single meaning, so it can be understood from completely different viewpoints. Perhaps Harry said ‘I love you’ because he loved the way Sally looked that day in her dress, the way she cuddles him and is confident in her stride. This would mean that Harry’s representation of love in this instance is to say I love the way Sally looks to me, how we suit each other walking hand in hand down the street.
Love can have so many different meanings depending on the outcome to which we want to achieve. What is love to one might have conditions whilst to another might have sacrifice as its core foundation. Either way we still label this multi-faceted feeling and emotion as just one word, ‘love’. It has no form but what we create through our mind, based on interaction and feelings.
If feelings and emotions have no real physicality, and cannot really be labeled, then we are truly living now within a world of miscommunication. Did we ever stop to think that maybe the whole world lives within this miscommunication, that in all essence we do not truly know how to express to another person without them not ever understanding our feelings and emotions? We constantly talk about issues of misunderstanding between people because of emotional difficulties. It is the hardest thing for us all to control in this life, to communicate through our emotions, to get across our deepest feelings.
What if all that we have problems in this world is merely because of misunderstanding the emotions and feelings based around issues that we have no physical ability to translate towards one another? We live entirely within our own singular world without the ability to absorb another person’s emotions and feelings as our own. We can be impacted by another persons emotions and how they effect on the outside. However, we have no ability to become these people in form to know exactly how they are feeling. We can only try and explain ourselves to the ends of time, with just more emotional labels that also have no full physical representational value.
Are feelings and emotions then an appropriate communication device, or just a creative expression? Would this mean that the words themselves are merely a creative tool that needs continuous understanding in order to be utilized? Next time you ask someone ‘what is love’, ‘what is life’, ‘what is purpose’, think about what these things mean to you, and ask yourself, does this person feel the same as me? Does he/she know exactly what I mean by the labels I use? You will be very surprised to find that in most cases, that these words are only labels. It is not until we use the words in the physical sense that we can determine any real direct meaning from them.
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