You know I wonder if we should be more concerned with the black holes in our lives as opposed to the possible black holes in space - ha that's funny really isn't it, I would have said space was a black hole (sorry sometimes I can't help myself slipping into non-scientific jargon).
Anyway, I've been contemplating wordy black holes - you know those letterly arrangements lurking in far too many (life) sentences, waiting to suck the unwary reader (or speaker) into the twilight zone.
The particular black whole that has brought forth this short (yes you can relax, I shall be brief(ish) this time) is that lying little bugger believe (it can also be found lurking in trees disguised as a 'beleaf').
I suggest this word could do with a loooong period of confinement in a wtf-holding-cell somewhere in way-outta space.
Can someone tell me what it means??
Surely it's an arrangement of seven letters that leads nowhere. I'd say it actually belongs is in a seven worded sentence
"I do not know what I believe."
And that's the whole point of it! The instigation of this word 'believe' is a cunning device to get you thinking you know something that you do NOT. AND this process of thinking you know something you know not, leaves you literally & metaphorically tied up in nots & knots.
According to the online etymology site that is a favourite haunt of my Mus musculus, the ancestry of the word believe goes like this "O.E. belyfan ... (W.Saxon) "believe," from P.Gmc. *ga-laubjan "hold dear, love," from PIE base *leubh- "to like, desire".
Now this little noword has one of the largest followings of the humankind - it's power sweeps unhindered across the great divides of religion, race & sex & is unanimously accepted. Once implanted (no need for microchips here) it turns it's followers into a pack of questionless disciples. It's certainly not only religion that has it's flocks 'believing' what they are tolled.
And lest we forget, 'belief' has become the catch phrase of the 'New Age'. Come on I'll bet you've said it too, I'm know I have & Google certainly has (many times) - "Results 1 - 10 of about 174,000,000 for you get what you believe in".
"You can have anything you want if you give up the belief that you can't have it" hmmm...
So let's make like a pathologist & perform a little auto-spy on the Noveau Temps slogan.
"You get what you believe in".
If we'd stayed with the origin of the word, then to get what we held dear would be very grand indeed. But belief got taken by over by religion (FYI religion is also worth a backward glance- "popular etymology among the later ancients (and many modern writers) connects it with religare "to bind fast" - hmmm...
Sorry I digressed. We were looking at the 'B' word - "belief had by 16c. become limited to "mental acceptance of something as true," from the religious use in the sense of "things held to be true as a matter of religious doctrine".
So that's pretty much where we stand & dither on belief today - "mental acceptance of something as true". What's missing here is experience, because it's all just in the mind. Perhaps that's why it's gotten to be such a good little earner for the New Age gurus, well who hasn't got a penthouse suite of the mind.
"The probability that we may fail in the struggle ought not to deter us from the support of a cause we believe to be just" A-Bee Lincoln said this double-speak was so.
Something I've been wondering is how much we can really 'create' without some kind of physical experience or body knowing. Lately I've been looking into the physical world & also looking into rituals - always some kind of hands on experience is required, it's not a mind only job.
I've been wondering if the masses have been fed a lot of stale air 'words'. Verbs are supposed to be doing words - but verbs like 'believe' & 'hope' don't go anywhere. They are waiting words. Have you noticed how much of our lives revolve around 'waiting' (wait (v.) c.1200, "to watch with hostile intent, lie in wait for"). Do the words that keep us waiting have some form of hostile intent?
Another waiting word is faith "c.1250, "duty of fulfilling one's trust" - a rather bizarre wording, n'est-ce pas?
I suggest that these words could be viewed as peasant food for the masses - a glutinous substance that binds the mind & weakens the body/soul.
I got started thinking about beliefs because of the extremely popular self-bashing system whereby we acknowledge our 'destructive beliefs', yet are completely unable to make the most basic changes - we can see the truck of life that's about to hit us but are unable to step aside. I've been hit by many of these life trucks & am amazed at my inability to either avoid the impact or launch a missile & blow the bloody thing up.
This dilemma has led to the idea that we are not victims of the mental black holes called beliefs. Instead what we are dealing with is a very definite set of inner 'instructions' - we don't move out of the way of the truck du vie because there is within us an override-order to stay put.
Matthew Delooze has written a stunning article which I'll link to at the bottom. He tells of a dream whereby people with mouths stitched shut absorb words in a way similar to how we breathe air. With each word absorbed they become more & more lifeless.
Is that what these words do do us?
There is one more word, well phrase I want to mention before I go.
A conversation with my friend from West Africa a little while ago led to his revealing his irritation with the phrase 'making love'. He told me that he often translates words back into his native language in order to get a better understanding of them. He told me that in his language it is impossible to translate that phrase - that you cannot 'make' love. He sees it, & I agree, as a marketing device. That phrase has been inserted deep into the Western World's psyche - why?? When two (or more!) people get together & make like a sewing machine, love is NOT being made, rather sex is being had. You may have extremely deep feelings for your playmate, but love is not being made.
This phrase may well be behind much of the male-female discord, for VERY different things in-deed seem to be being sought by the parties involved. Another friend of the male persuasion has told me that 'he has never made love.' Research across the generally male dominated blogosphere has introduced me to ideas of a very similar nature - the male of the species DO NOT make love, they seek out & enjoy sex (well when they can get it :)
The more I look into words the more I seem to see a wor(l)d of spells.
Why is it that our world of words echoes the management committee of Planet Earth - a very select few, in in-your-face-positions, overseeing the many?
Perhaps it's time to spell our own words?
Link to Matthew Delooze's brilliant new article