Sunday, February 23, 2003

Of Language and Bridges Construction

Commenting on Jeneane's post at Tom's new Stir I decided to post it here because I am trying to say something I am not sure what so here we go doing some construction with words.

"We need a bridge somehow across languages through language"

A Bridge? There is a Bridge Tom (I later realized it was Jeneane's post). The Bridge is not Looking for One but realizing The Bridge is when one decides to build it. If I were to speak with someone who grew up speaking Other Language then the first thing I would want to know is 'How does world look like in your language?'. I am quite a Whorfian guy. I see the Language creates reality one lives inside of. The language one speaks one uses to build the world one sees, comments on and lives inside of. In a way we are creatures of Language (not a definite thing of course. We are creatures of many things).

So how do you build language? I think there needs to be some education in American Schools for speaking another language - not 'foreign language' but 'another language'. After all, when children are growing up English Language is quite foreign to them. Then, growing up, they live with it and mold the world around and inside of them. It is the same as playing a musical instrument. It is a language of sound that affords us to see something inaccessible by the language of words. So it may be in Polish. When I live inside Polish language I am one person and when I live inside of English language I am another. But then again when I listen to Rachmaninov I don't know who I am. I am housed in a different placed when Chopin touches my soul. Perhaps the road to Peace on Earth is for us to be open to discover the place we get housed in when we allow a different language to live through us.

We need translators. Those shamans of old who speak both the language of the tribe and the language of the gods. We need translators who can live in one language and then shift and live in another. We need language travelers. Language shifters. The world is much richer than the best constructions of English language can ever reveal.

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