I find words and their definitions to be endlessly fascinating. It amazes me that the simple 26 letters in the English alphabet can be arranged in a seemingly endless variety that creates so many different meanings, stories, and feelings. Language is such a beautiful thing, and quite often in life, we get stuck in a daily routine with our language. We tend to use words that are comfortable to us and don't often actively seek out ways to expand our vocabulary. Here are some words that, even if you don't start using in your vocabulary, are gorgeous in sound and meaning. Try keeping them in your head and living through them in your life.
1. Logolepsy: (n.) an obsession or fascination with words.
This seems like an appropriate way to start this list. Always keep your curiosity high and your search for wisdom higher.
2. Eunoia: (n.) beautiful thinking; a well mind.
This word comes from the Greek word εὔνοια which directly means a "well mind." It is also the shortest word in the English language that contains all of the five main vowels. Try to always keep your thoughts clear and your mind positive.
3. Tacenda: (n.) things better left unsaid; matters to be passed over in silence.
Sometimes it is better when things are left unsaid. Often in life, we tend to speak too much and too carelessly. Think before you hurt someone and leave some words unsaid when necessary.
4. Saudade: (n.) the feeling of longing, melancholy, or nostalgia.
This word is from the Portugeuse and Galician languages and has no direct translation in English. However, it is still an interesting word that reminds us that sometimes it is okay to long for the past. As long as your head and heart are facing forward, it is all right to look to the past and remember and smile (shameless Blink-182 plug).
5. Kilig: (n.) the feeling of butterflies in one's stomach.
This word comes from the Philippine culture. We all know what this feels like, and now we can actually refer to it with a word. Never lose your sense of excitement and never let fear hold you back from something that makes your stomach swoon.
6. Namaste: (exclamation) a respectful greeting.
Namaste is a Hindi word that has roots in Sanskrit. With the rise of yogi culture in the United States, I feel like we often hear and use "namaste" without fully understanding its meaning (for example, "Namaste in bed" really just has no relation to the word besides comedic aspects). This gesture reflects the belief that a Divine spark is within all of us and is a way of acknowledging the soul in the self by the soul in another. Nama means bow, as means I, and te means you. Thus, Namaste means “bow me you” or “I bow to you.”
7. Orenda: (n.) a mystical force present in all people that empowers them to affect the world, or to effect change in their own lives.
Orenda is an Iroquois name for this spiritual power inherent in all people (oʊrɛndə). You possess endless internal power. Remember this and never feel useless or unimportant.
8. Serein: (n.) fine rain falling after sunset from a sky in which no clouds are visible.
With origins in the French language, this word reflects the feeling of evening serenity that results from the rain that falls when no clouds are present. I think it should remind us all of feelings of peace.
9. Sunyata: (n.) emptiness; voidness; openness.
While this may sound like a very negative definition, this word has roots in Sanskrit and is central to the Buddhist religion. It is the true reality of all worldly existences (people, things, and the self). Sunyata is the ability to disentangle the self from attachments and thus from being unsatisfied and disappointed. By not associating profound meaning to certain people and things (realizing everything is fluid and in reality, empty of the associations we give them), we erase the unhappiness that results from high expectations.
10. Marahuyo: (adj.) to be enchanted.
Allow yourself to be swept away by the beauty and enchantment of the world around us.
11. Wanderlust: (n.) a strong desire to travel.
This one may be the most popular on the list, but I still think it is an important one. Adventure is out there. Never stop looking for it.
12. Bodhi: (n.) enlightenment; awakening.
Also a Sanskrit term, this is the ultimate happiness. To rid the self of ego, the need for possessions, and attachments to other things, is the ultimate way to achieve awakening or happiness. Believe in yourself and the power that you have within yourself and you can have the strength to listen to your heart and be the happiest you can be.
Always continue to seek out new things and work towards the best you that you can be! Use language for beauty, not for destruction.