Life is lived in moments.
Traditionally, there is a difference between swearing and vulgarity, but just a quick back track… They now theorize that swearing reduces sensitivity to pain, because it brings up negative emotion and triggers the fight or flight response which speeds up the heart rate – one thing they detected – as well as dulling pain sensitivity. I disagree with that conclusion. There are other experiments, they have not cross referenced, involving the affect of priming the brain by reviewing personal values. They have found that when someone spends a brief period of time reflecting on their personal values, concepts they esteem or thinking about loved ones, things along these lines, self composure increases noticeably. Any testing requiring self control or conscious prolonged focus becomes noticeably easier.
So you say swearing is natural? Oh indeed, I am saying it is natural, and vulgarity is just the lowest form of swearing. Traditionally, swearing was a form of invocation, a declaration of honest intent, wholehearted commitment. This is the origin of concepts like giving your word.
I find if I need to do something I don’t have motivation to do, I sit and think or read about it, then I gain motivation to do it. You become favourably disposed toward anything you think on in a relaxed manner, but there is another deeper process that we can access there. The desire to swear is not as simple as a defensive reaction. In those moments, we seek to affirm our strength. Our casual thinking tends to undermine our sense of strength. All the problem solving thought which is really just a misnomer for analysis. Does going over the details of a problem really ever actually solve it?
I need to think around it, not on it.
Conventional so called problem solving puts us constantly on edge. We remain constantly on guard against failure, and our natural reward reaction never has a moment to trigger for us. Our heads remain filled with problems. The reward response is also responsible for recognizing when an idea matches our desired intent.
I think if you mull it over in your mind, let it ferment, then things will occur to you over time. Relaxation does wonders there it’s true, but when sudden distress strikes, sudden pain or being startled, our brains jump naturally not to prey mode, not to evasion. In my experience, human beings are much too naturally curious, even aggressive. Our brains in those moments seek to express power, dominance, like that funny little lizard in Australia with the huge neck frills. We need to feel like we can assert ourselves. Dr Maslow even listed self actualization as the greatest human need.
I think that’s very useful …the best defense is a good offense.
Invoking ‘God’ to ‘damn’ something. Indeed, the original intention behind the phrase “God damn it”, was literal, not a figure of speech. It was said when you honestly believed someones conduct was deserving of condemnation.
“I put a hex on you.” Hexes are a form of cursing which is indeed a form of swearing, but the hex works a bit differently. Everyone hear of kenning?
Kenning was systematic poetic metaphor. They were deliberately constructed to present an understanding of some important topic or bit of social understanding. Traditionally, those who had the skill of kenning, the skalds, also called bragr, were able to express insights into someones faults or weaknesses in character in such a way that they would (to use our modern terminology) “go viral.” People who heard the kenning would be unable to get it out of their heads and would find themselves naturally noticing the defective behaviour.
Like a song? Not necessarily song as we understand them today. Spoken word rhymes were also called songs back then.
Sort of like a meme? “If it fits, I sits.” “A penny saved is a penny earned.”
Ever notice how often our urge to swear is aggressive as opposed to passively displeased?
When someone angers us, our instincts move us naturally to look for the cause, an explanation for why we are so angry at them. So we start looking for character defects, reasons why our anger is justified, and well, most people are rather poor observers so we wind up just saying something unsatisfying and pointlessly crass.
I think swear words are located just at the borders between our human/beast threshold. Indeed, you are correct.
“I am justified, because I am angry.”
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.