Hold It All

Category: Lexicon

Words Words Words

David Crystal, Words Words Words
Oxford University Press, 2006


From this engaging book, I note  the following words and  passages.


Aptronym = when a name is felt to be especially appropriate to a person, when a Dentist is called Tooth.

Dialect = use of language which tells other people where you are from.

Eponym = when a name becomes an everyday word in a language  [chauvinistic] Read the rest of this entry »

Word of the Day: Maitri

“Maitri is translated in a lot of ways, maybe most commonly as love, but the way Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche translated it was unconditional friendliness and in particular unconditional friendliness to oneself.” — Pema  Chödron

Word of the Day

Saudade, noun, Portuguese, pl. Saudades

1.  longing, yearning, ardent wish or desire
2.  homesickness, nostalgia.…

Estou cada vez com mais saudade de voce = I miss you more and more every day.
Meu coração tem saudade dela = My heart aches for her.
Morro de saudade de ve-la = I die with impatience to see her.
Tenho muita saudade dela =  I miss her very much.

–Novo Michaelis: Dicionario Illustrado


Itadakimas is an important word in the Japanese language. Literally, it means, “I place this over my head,” and is translated as “I humbly receive.” It is the blessing which all Japanese, from the day laborer to the prime minister, intone before a meal, even a snack. It is the saving grace of Japanese culture.

–Robert Aitken, Miniatures of a Zen Master

Word of the Day: Gassho

Gassho is the Japanese equivalent of the Sanskrit Anjali. It is the greeting, palm to palm, found among people throughout Asia, from the Dalai Lama to the Singhalese peasant, from the Pakistani weaver to the Japanese business executive. One palm is you and the other is me, and we are together.

–Robert Aitken, Zen Miniatures

Word of the Day

Disponibilidade, noun, Portuguese

A disposition of openness
In which one is accessible
Available and willing
To be inconvenienced
By the needs or requests
Of another person or event

–adapted from Mev Puleo, The Struggle Is One: Voices and Visions of Liberation

Word of the Day

Word of the day, via Abbie Amico: In the Filipino language of Tagalog, there exists a word by the name of Kapwa. Literally translated it means “I’m not me without you” but as with other words, the English language does not do it justice.

Gospel Subversive

Even when they call us mad,
When they call us subversives and communists
And all the epithets they put on us,
We know that we only preach
The subversive witness of the Beatitudes,
Which have turned everything upside down
To proclaim blessed the poor,
Blessed the thirsting for justice,
Blessed the suffering. [1]

–Oscar Romero

In his introduction to All Saints, a daily, Catholic and catholic guide to traditional and contemporary saints, Robert Ellsberg acknowledges, “I can truthfully say of my own life that I have learned far less about the gospel from studying theology than I have from the lives of holy people. In part this reflects the narrative structure of the Christian gospel. The truths of Christianity are verified in living witness rather than in logical syllogisms.”[2]

Of course, that narrative structure deals principally with having a passion for the Reign of God and facing the inevitable consequences of conflict with and persecution by the reigning powers.In recent decades, some sectors of the Christian churches have lived out that very narrative with both courage and fidelity amid incredible horrors, often sponsored by the U.S. government.

One of the most famous exemplars this of compromismo, or commitment, is El Salvadoran archbishop Oscar Romero, who was assassinated after three years of ever-growing solidarity with the poor majority of his country. Read the rest of this entry »