When Did Words Lose Their Value?
Words are one of the most powerful things in the world. Marriages, friendships, relationships, businesses, companies are started from words. And wars are started over words. Friendships and marriages ended over words along with business deals, companies and other things. Words are extremely important. They can heal or wound, entice or break a person, bring laughter or tears to others, bring hope or despair to someone, and can break hearts or harden them. So, when did we start throwing words around so casually without any thought as to the repercussions?
image from uquoted.com
I am southern born and bred and where we come from in the deep south, the word “hon” is as common as breathing. There is no sentimental attachment to it and is just something people say as part of their culture. Let others from another area come in and some will find it “sweet” and some will get mad and ask how dare you call them hon. But, let them hang around long enough and people will soon learn that it is not used as a form of endearment but rather as a way of speaking to a person whose name you do not know. It is probably one of the least forms of endearment and a far cry from calling someone “honey”.
And then there are people who call others darling, honey, love, precious, sweetness….all words of endearment and yet they are not always to the person speaking them. Perhaps another cultural difference. And yet many will mistake them as genuine care and love and end up getting hurt. So, when did this casualness with words of love and care become something that is done so often? People get hurt with that because some will always believe in it and their naivety will cause them great anguish when they learn it is not true and is said to everyone.
Words used casually soon become hollow words and as time progresses they will become meaningless. So, what do we do? Do we go back to valuing the meaning of words and using them as intended or continue on a path of nothing anyone says is true? I am very old school. If I use the word “love” to a person…I mean it. It may be that the love is deeper with some than others, but I truly mean it. If I say I believe in you…I mean it to the very depths of my being. And if I no longer believe in you, I will never say it again. I try so hard to not say hollow words…words with no real depth behind them. It is like giving an award to the whole class when only one person really earned it. The words lose value.
I also believe in telling people when something has hurt me or angered me because not communicating only causes problems. And I have come to learn that many will “react” and begin coming back in attack fashion and as is already said…words can destroy. Friendships can be lost, marriages ruined, companies dissolved, countries go to war.
I have always believed in being “true to thy own self” and treating others like I want to be treated. Does that mean I always succeed? Of course not, I am human but it means I try hard. It also means that I trust too much, give too much of myself, love too much and reach out to help those that I care about any way I can. And it means I get hurt a lot. I sort of figured it came with the territory of trying to be as Christ like as I could and opening myself to others. I have begun to understand why some people prefer to live in the country away from others as there is less problems.
image from teemcf.com
What I have learned is that words are too powerful…the bad and the good ones. They can do things that we may not think about the consequences of and we end up hurting someone. And I have learned that I no longer know what a person means when they talk because people do not value the true meaning of words anymore. I find myself staring with this visual of a lotto machine flipping pictures at Vegas only it is flipping definitions to me to pick which one I want to take the words as meaning.
So, how do we fix this. I have no idea. All I know is that I have to live by the meaning I put in words and I have to accept if my meaning goes off course or becomes hollow and causes pain, anguish, anger, harm, etc to another. And in today’s time where the internet makes spouting off words so easy and then walking away….people are getting hurt more and more in life and learning to trust less and less. So, I would say maybe the solution is “be accountable” for what you say and do in life and own it for if you truly own it, you will think about it before you say it.
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