Meaning Creates Language
by robert cinque
We care about what is meaningful to us. The cat gets hungry and cares about his hunger. He says Meow, you feed him, and a successful communication of meaning through language takes place.
A conversation is an agreement, a contract, to mutually care about each other and their meaning.
A successful conversation is completely determined by how much caring exists.
The Speaker must care enough (about both his message and the Listener) in order to be responsible for communicating his meaning in such a way that is understandable and harmless. The Listener must care (about the Speaker and his message) enough to be responsible for comprehending it, making sure he got it in the way the Speaker intended, and waiting until the Speaker indicates that he is finished speaking before responding. When that signal is given, the Listener becomes the Speaker and the roles reverse.
When there is not enough caring, communication is impossible. The Listener will interrupt the Speaker or the Speaker will assault the Listener, for example.
When agreeing to have a conversation, both Speaker and Listener agree to be responsible for caring.
The rules of a successful conversation are
1) Listen without interrupting, unless a question must be asked for clarification of the message. Verify that what you have understood is accurate.
2) Speak from caring about the message and the Listener and be responsible for getting the message through intact, as you mean it, not as it may be interpreted. Verify that what you said was received accurately.
In this way, both individuals can meet their responsibilities as Speaker and Listener in their agreement to have a conversation, and be guaranteed of a successful outcome.
And, not otherwise.
No matter how much intellect or oratory skills may or may not be present, the success or failure of a converstaion depends entirely upon the level of caring and the amount of responsibility such caring demands.