Tuesday, November 30, 2010


"Don't use words too big for the subject. Don't say "infinitely" when you mean "very"; otherwise you'll have no word left when you want to talk about something really infinite."
C. S. Lewis 

I recently got into a conversation about current slang. My friend and I were discussing the fact that words like "awesome" and "epic" are now used for every day things and have completely lost their original meanings. I, honestly, am just as guilty of using them this way, but that conversation, along with Lewis' quote got me thinking.

If I call my friends "awesome" and "amazing" or even "wonderful", how do I describe God? 

If getting an F on a paper is an "epic failure" how would I talk about losing a war?

Do we still have words for these things?

There is a sense in which this holds true for profanity as well. I rarely (almost never) resort to swearing, but I am not particularly bothered by its use by others. (Except that I consider the names "Jesus", "Christ" and "God" to be sacred so hearing them used as cuss words is seriously offensive to me.) I do wonder, though, what people who lace all their conversations with profanity say when they are truly frustrated or angry or need to shock people into action. Also, on the (very) rare occasions when I use profanity it provides an emotional release ..... would it do the same for someone who  uses it every other word? I wonder.

I know I am not being very original here, but I think these ideas have validity. Just my humble opinion really. Would love to hear what others think.

Have a good day!


  1. Brilliant! I agree but slang has been doing this to words for years. Words are like water: moving, flexible, changing. I myself use awesome way too much and love the energy and feeling of "epic" but never use it. I guess if we really need to use these words for their true meaning we can always through in "wicked" in front for emphasis. ;-)

  2. I'm particularly guilty of using JC when I get angry...but I guess it is more out of frustration when I have been at my wits end...perhaps begging for his help?? or to give me some sanity?? or to save me?? LOL! I also tend to say "Oh my God." when something terrible happens...but that isn't profanity...but I do know some people take offense to that term too.

    Getting back to the C.S. Lewis quote though...I think that is just his opinion, personally. You can call your friends awesome, perfect, amazing, whatever...and personally, I think you can call God the same, after all we are made in His image. God is Great, but He is also my "bud" if that makes sense. :) I guess that is because I don't look at God as being "better" than me - He just is.