Where change has no name

“The day you teach the child the name of the bird, the child will never see that bird again” – Krishnamurti

I perhaps don’t understand the full depth of this quote, but what I imagine Krishnamurti was referring to was this idea that when we are born we see the sacredness in life and things around us. There is something that happens as we grow, where as we ascribe language to something, we somehow put form around it and limit our perspective of that thing. We start to see the bird according to how we define the bird, rather than as the beautiful and special movement of energy that it is.

I also heard recently that in Tibet there was and is no word for ‘guilt’. Does the word create the feeling, or the feeling create the word. Did anyone in Tibet ever experience guilt? Perhaps not. I have been wondering how much language shapes how we look at things, as much as how experiences shape our language.

In the work that I do I am so often struck by the amount of language we use to give meaning to what we are doing and creating. We identify as ‘social entrepreneurs’; involve ourselves in ‘innovation’, and battle over the true definition of ‘social enterprise’, ‘conscious capitalism’ and ‘impact investment’. We give generosity and goodwill the name ‘philanthropy’, and overtime have complicated and confused what was once Read more