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Genealogy of Words


English: Wolves chasing an elk

English: Wolves chasing an elk (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I like the sound of the word “wolves”.  It’s an unsettling sounding word.  But notice this:

 

How much does “wolves” sound like “wool”?  Quite a bit.  If you pay attention in English, there are strange affinities between words.  “Wolves” or “Wolf” are very close to a prominent feature of the animal they are frequently portrayed as eating.

 

I’m not saying this is a unique thought or a new idea.  It’s just kind of new to me.  Not really even new, it’s an old idea that only recently I started to think about.

 

Why is the highest part of a human being–“soul”–the same sound as the lowest part of a human being–“sole”–or the same as “only”?

The critical theory that I sort of learned in college said that we construct the world with words…we construct reality with words.  And there is some truth to that, right?  At least we construct the way we perceive reality; and we help to construct the way others perceive it by means of words.  Even if we didn’t originate a phrase or a way of thinking, by repeating it we contribute to a way of seeing the world.

But if you believe that God created with His Word, it makes you wonder what you are looking at when you see the way words have developed or evolved.

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