Where does language’s authority come from?
Language is a deeply integral part of our life; it’s difficult to grasp its value and purpose. Literally, I can express a thought, just as these words are doing now, and through writing, bring something within myself into concrete existence. I can describe a place in my imagination to another conscious being and they can imagine roughly the same as I do! Through the facial expressions of a child, we can interpret anger, or joy. Through vocal tone or percussion, we can separate serious from sarcastic. By the paints on a canvas, we can feel beauty and connection or desolation and pain. There is a shared, unspoken language that each of us understand. What is that? Not only should we be asking what particular language that it is, but, what is language and where does it come from?
Language will be defined as a medium for communication and expression understood through meaningful, coherent patterns. It is a catalyst for expression – something that we are so totally absorbed in that we forget it’s place in creation. Referring back to the question introducing this piece, what gives language it’s power? Think, tens of trillions of prayers request for a reality that is different from a current one, why would any of them come true? Are we the ones giving meaning to the pattern of sounds, or have coherent patterns always existed and we are drawing from something fundamental, upon which existence has built its foundation (language being a quality of existence). My suggestion is that language is divine – meaning that language is not strictly an invention of man, it is eternal in nature. Divine Language (communication) transcends all intentions in all forms; it is a real connection lying within each one of us.
Language looks to be the only real link to a greater depth of understanding – we think in it, we speak in it; it is all encompassing and therefore illusive when we reach to it. How can we understand language when we are confined to think only about it within it’s own boundaries? Can we transcend language?
The take away: the language in which we speak cannot be fully understood in the same means by which we speak it; it must be transcended by the highest language (in this case, meaning understood without our spoken word).