Language As Map


Languages are often likened to maps.

If the words and phrases of a language are the points on the map which we can visit, our use of that language are the highways and the dust roads on the map.

We see the advantages, but we rarely see the drawbacks of language.

Use of languages gives us the ability to structure our thoughts; to reach point B from point A. With the tools of language at disposal, thoughts can be streamlined, and our minds can perform much faster.

Why do we achieve a boost of speed using language? A language imprints its map on our minds, and our thought processes move a layer of abstraction higher. Basically, ideas and concepts are hard-coded into language, and that means we don't have to reinvent the wheel every time we think.

We save much time by delegating most of the work into our subconscious.

If we learn more languages, we have more maps (and thus more options) at our disposal. We can observe the differences, and use them in our favor.

Languages are tools.

As with most tools, they can be used, abused or misused. Languages too are a double-edged sword.

Misuse happens when we use language all the time, in every situation.

As with highways, we rush our thoughts in more or less predetermined directions, barely noticing the world outside the highway.

This can be a fatal error. If maps become shackles, consciousness may become rigid and unresponsive. Awareness locked into set patterns is likely to experience death of those patterns - one way or the other.

It is imperative that we learn the drawbacks of language.

Most languages are created ('optimized') to address a particular set of problems.

Most social languages are patchworks representing subsets of collective (sub)consciousness. They do not only represent parts of subconscious, but influence as well.

Creating new maps for new problems may be quite appropriate as long as we understand both the advantages and the drawbacks.

Familiarize yourself with the tools you use!


Aeria Gloris / I Ching Integration / Language As Map