There’s a moment of orderly silence before a series of well chained imagination begins in one’s mind. Nerves are in position, thoughts are frozen and anything is possible. Then like a traffic accident emotions begin to randomly collide. From the first time the eye sets foot on the first word to the nerve transmission onto the brain for comprehension is closer to four microseconds than five. The words we read begin to change the game of life as we know it. It doesn’t only alter your life but mine as well.
This is not an ordinary article on the power of words spoken but those written and read.
There’s that strange feeling we all get when reading words in a book. We’re drawn into a world we cannot explain. Something comes over us and its hard to remove yourself from the magical effect one is so lost in. You suddenly feel you’re not yourself. Like your head has been cut off and another’s put in its place such that you see the world through a different pair of eyes. Your body becomes extremely frozen not even the hottest fire can warm you up. You begin to feel physically weak and in no time you’re swept by what you imagine. You’re held captive by the words that are manipulated deftly in the hands of expertise. The words wind themselves around your whole body, you can hardly breathe. And when you’re so enthralled you cannot move, they pierce your skin, enter your blood, numb your thoughts and slowly begin to work their magic on you.
A character created by sentences, a figment of imagination formed through fiction is whom you create an emotional and intellectual bond with. In the wink of an eye all human relationships are lost and your life just takes a turn. You begin to live among the paper characters. You love some and love others less. You feel what they feel. You know what they know and not only that, but also live through every situation together; both good and bad. You understand them, maybe just maybe, more than you understand yourself. You can tell when they lie and when they’re telling the truth.
Slowly as you blend yourself into the paper society, you begin to figure out things you didn’t know about life. You start to believe in continuity in the strive to live and result in survival. The words lead you to automatically carve concepts out of the experiences of the paper characters.
Words have power. They can light fires in the minds of men. They can wring tears from the hardest hearts. They can put smiles on the gloomiest faces and warm the coldest hearts. They are the coins making up the currency of sentences and there are always too many coins. They open our eyes to a life outside our own, allowing us to be enlightened and in turn enlighten others. A process that changes lives and turns societies.
“Words… they’re innocent, neutral, precise, standing for this, describing that, meaning the other, so if you look after them you can build bridges across incomprehension and chaos. But when they get their corners knocked off, they’re no good anymore… I don’t think writers are scared, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones in the right order, you can nudge the world a little or make a poem which children will speak for you when you’re dead.” A Tom Stoppard quote.