Vocabulary and thought

[L]anguage deficit leads to attention deficit.  As we deplete our ability to denote and figure particular aspects of our places, so our competence for understanding and imagining possible relationships with non-human nature is correspondingly depleted.

Robert MacFarlane, “The word-hoard,” The Guardian (02/27/2015)


MacFarlane is talking about the gradual erosion of the vocabulary of words about our natural world, but this piece reminded me of how the loss of spiritual vocabulary — words and stories — leads to an inability to pay attention to spiritual things.