The Power of Words

“I know nothing in the world that has as much power as a word. Sometimes I write one, and I look at it, until it begins to shine.” – Emily Dickinson

Your words are one of the most powerful tools at your disposal. They can ignite fury, relieve tension, destroy lives, repair broken hearts, empower hatred, clothe love, topple a dictator, organize civilizations, and much, much more. Your words are the primary means by which the world you center and larger world in which we live is created from day to day.

Words are vessels for spirits. They convey ideas, yes, but just as importantly they transmit and pique feeling. Words create. Words destroy. Words heal. Words wound. Words inspire. Words depress.

Words also define. They define places and things, yes, but they also define you. The limits of your words are in many ways the limits of your world. As Henry Hazlitt noted in “Thinking as a Science”:

A man with a scant vocabulary will almost certainly be a weak thinker. The richer and more copious one’s vocabulary and the greater one’s awareness of fine distinctions and subtle nuances of meaning, the more fertile and precise is likely to be one’s thinking. Knowledge of things and knowledge of the words for them grow together. If you do not know the words, you can hardly know the thing.

Most importantly, words penetrate the mystery of being. They either connect you to the universe or isolate you within it.  Words formed in the womb of love are the genesis of fulfillment and happiness. Thoughtless or insensitive words are the seeds of regret and loneliness.

Take great care with your words today, tomorrow, and in each and every moment of your life. Begin with those closest to you and then let your words radiate outwardly. Your words change and shape your circumstances and those present with you, yes, but beyond that, they ripple out into the world in ways you could not possibly fathom.

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

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