words, speech, silence, power of words, what we say, relationship, healthy living, ketchupmoms

The Word and its Meaning

Asthi Kaschit Vaak Visheshah?” Princess Vilasavati asked her newly married, ignorant husband. It means, “Is there any verbal skill in you?” The absence of an adequate reply irked her. Soon she realized that her husband was dumb. Disappointed being tricked, she guided him to pray to Goddess Kali for speech. Blessed and transformed, the young man returned as the immortal poet, Kalidasa. His answer to her question was given through three beautiful epic poems, each of them starting with one of the three words in her question –

Kumarasambhava begins with Asthi, 
• Meghadutha with Kaschith and 
• Raghuvamsha with Vaak 

Vaak is beautifully interwoven in the introductory sloka of Raghuvasmha as-
Vagarthaviva sampriktau Vagarthah Pratipattaye 
Jagatah Pitarau Vande Parvati Parameshwarau” 

It means,“The word and its meaning are as inseparable like the parents of the Universe, Parvati and Parameshwara, to whom I pray for knowledge of speech and the meaning behind it.”

This sloka conceptualizing the single form of “Ardhanareeshwara”, where one half of the body represents Goddess Parvati and the other as Lord Shiva, has been interpreted in interesting ways. While Pitarau refers to “parents”, it also means “fathers” - Shiva and Vishnu. One should read Parvati Parameshwarau as Parvatipa, Shiva as Parvati’s husband and Rameshwarau, Vishnu as Rama or Lakshmy’s husband.

The first word uttered by a toddler delights and surprises the parents. They wait for the spate of words to follow. Similarly, an introduction at a new place whether a new home, school, college, or office starts off positively, only when the existing folks greet and welcome us through words. Any interaction or relationship is built or destroyed mainly on the exchange of words. In short, we prefer communication through words, instead of silence. But, why do words mean so much to us?
should we not be vigilant about our own words and exercise caution over what we say?
All words conveyed have meaning and if there is no meaning in the words uttered, the communication will be incomplete. Then, should we not be vigilant about our own words and exercise caution over what we say? Whatever the person be in terms of stature, protocol or otherwise, our words can either please or hurt them. A feel for sensitivity ensures and paves way for the stability or break-up of the relationship. However, spontaneity should not be missed out, else artifice gets easily recognized when the words do not convey the feeling. The measure behind the words has an important role to play in any context. The listener dismisses the entire conversation if it is slack and voluminous. Similarly, too much of brevity turns the conversation into dull, boring and leaves a sense of frustration in the listener.

The power behind the words also carries tremendous significance. Sanatana Dharma extols the Vedas as the utterance of the Gods. The intonation of the Sanskrit hymns is not only musical and soothing, but also very powerful because of the weight each word carries. It leaves a lasting impression on the listener. Every language has its chosen words and the beauty is seen and felt in the manner they are handled. It is for us to not only recognize this power but also see the vitality behind it.

John Maynard Keynes rightly emphasized, “Words ought to be a little wild, for they are the assaults of thought on the unthinking.”

Why do we utter a word? Where does it come from? If we trace the word to its source, wemight realize that word is the medium or the instrument through which an emotion or a feeling is expressed and understood. If we are blessed with good feelings, it stills our mind and would leaves us in a molten state of silence. In that silence, the immeasurable comes into Being.

Therefore, we should use the words intelligently to leave an effect or simply opt for silence.

Click these links to read more such motivational articles -

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Comments (6)

Prerna Sinha Posted on Aug 28, 2018

What a beautiful read. Words are very strong and people often use them without realising their worth. Amazing article!


Dipika Singh Posted on Aug 28, 2018

This is really useful to understand, every word has a meaning and choosing words wisely we have been advised by our elders. Giving out same to next generation is our responsibility. Right selection of words is vital


Vidhya Posted on Aug 28, 2018

Good read..


Purva Bhatia Posted on Aug 28, 2018

What a delightful read! Words can hurt and words can heal. Must choose them wisely :)


Ruchi Verma Posted on Aug 27, 2018

Actually when you speak you should have knowledge about it\'s meaning as it effects a lot in your communication


Neetika Posted on Aug 27, 2018

Good food for thought!



A finance professional in a reputed organization with an experience of over three decades, he thoroughly enjoys the twin but taxing pursuits of music and reading and loves to live his life to the ful

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