“In the silence of the heart God speaks. If you face God in prayer and silence, God will speak to you. Then you will know that you are nothing.”
– Mother Theresa
One of the greatest confusions you see in people these days is regarding their relationship to words. This modern world of ours is filled with words, symbols, numbers, sentences, data, and so on, all cascading around in a giant flood that snuffs out every moment. Under such an onslaught, it is unsurprising that most people find themselves confused and agitated by words and language, supposedly humanity’s greatest gift.
It is as if they have forgotten what words are.
What is a word, anyway? It’s a vibration, information, meaning – but all of these are just more words. On your screen they’re pixels, on paper they’re ink. Useful tools, if you need them – but do you need them? All the time? For what?
At the ultimate level, a word is merely a reduction, an attempt to capture the uncapturable. As Mother Theresa says, God speaks in silence. The religions of humanity debate over the right word for ultimate truth: God, Allah, Yahweh, Brahma, Shiva, Buddha, nirvana, moksha, and so on – but none of these are accurate, none of them are more than a shadow.
Coming back to the confusion: this flood of words has made us believe that words are the ultimate, can express the ultimate, and that that’s that. This, of course, cannot be the case.
After all, if words are the ultimate, if ‘I think, therefore I am,’ is the highest holy truth, what exists when the mind goes blank?