It’s interesting ( and truthful)… the more I blog, the better they get. I noticed my last post was a little more popular than previous times. Thanks peeps! I swear I’m trying to get better at this.
I noticed in my last year of efforts to try & write a little more–I have yet to reveal my massive PASSION for language. So I will discuss…well, NOW 🙂
I have been passionate about communication and language all my life. Ever since I was little and came across the first sentence in another language (which I actually think might have been German since our neighbor’s mother was from Germany and my mom said she used to talk to me in German…) I have always been fascinated by languages. It’s amazes me that so many different words and pronunciations are at our disposal as humans and how we give them a multitude of meanings. I also think languages bring us closer to God. See the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. Working in everyone’s tongue… everyone in their hearts understanding. It’s an amazing concept, an amazing experience (yes I have experienced something similar… I’ll leave for another post) and its just boggles my mind how languages are formed, modified, and broken down. (ahhh…sigh of beauty.)
Now when I mean language, I really mean all forms of communication. My example of this is watching my two dogs. Since I have been “professionally” trained to be a dog trainer… I know that dogs communicate through body language & tons of non-verbal signals. I.E. they understand when you go towards the wall with leashes it may mean a walk. By watching my dogs I have learned how they communicate: my black & white husky Scout will come up, knock April (my puppy girl of a mix) on the side and then try to (literally) “eat” her front paw. In response she lifts it up, growls at him and swings her butt towards his body. Some people think this is fighting—it’s really husky play and Scout has learned to come over and say “Hey, wanna play? I’ll get your leegggg…..” and April going ” yeah I guess, but i’m going to get you first with my … BUTT!” (exaggerated for dramatic emphasis 🙂 ) And it makes me smile to know that their just living life as dogs were meant to live it…. playin’ 😀
Moving into human language– i have an immense desire to learn what I feel like is as many languages as possible. Here’s the few I have formal school credit in:
1) Spanish (2 years High school) [side note i live in southern california–spanish knowledge is a must here…]
2) Latin, 2 years (yes- I felt like I should have learned this in grade school, so I made a commitment for a theology degree to learn an ancient language… I should have taken Greek…)
3)Hebrew, 1.5 years in undergrad, year as tutor; 2 quarters in grad school (and continuing since I want to be involved in Old Testament.)
4)Russian, 1 year. Definitely something I want to learn more of. I love eastern European/Western Asian countries…
5)Greek, 1 year. (well, I did go to seminary)
Now here are the few I have informally studied or at least looked at/owned books or done reports on:
1) Egyptian Hieroglyphics : YES, i did a report freshman year. We have to research something–I got REALLY dorky. And way back when (yes, Susan Miller this is true) i wanted to be an Egyptologist. I find this EXTREMELY fascinating and even more important now that I am learning how Ancient Near Eastern culture is pertinent to understanding culture and context of the Bible.
2) German. This is actually the language I understand the most (less the personal experience of Spanish.) I have taught it all myself, even purchased short stories & a Bible in German to eventually be able to read it & understand the plethora of German theological documents, papers and theologians. Plus my heritage is German. Shouldn’t i have learned that somewhere???
3) Ancient Near Eastern Languages. Suddenly, at the end of Hebrew, I felt this urge that I should look into studying Akkadian. Then when I asked about it, my professor encouraged I start with Aramaic after Hebrew, keep going in that, look at Uggaritic and then move onto Akkadian. And we’re talking maybe a handful of texts I would even be reading. But i’m sorry–this just sounds so COOL to me. So books purchased and ready to go.
4) Latin…again. This is how I know i’m called to do some type of research/knowledge-based something in my life. Even though I had two years of Latin, I do not remember as much as I would like. So I took information from my class, got the same materials and plan on working on this once I learn German. Besides, PhD candidates are required typically to know German, Latin and….
5) French. I have bought the books (3 actually, because I know I learn exceptionally well by semi-indicutive method between formal book training and interaction with speakers.
6) again… Russian. I have the books used from my undergrad class, bought the 2nd year books and understand very well on how to learn a language. Of course–this is very different from fully understanding them.
Whew…. Ok. I’m done. Sorry for the long post and what may be rambling about something i’m completely crazy about. So as for now. …..Auf Wiedersehen!