Peter A Goldsbury
The thought that 'language communicates because humans are doing the speaking', seems to me to make Language an entity, a Platonic Form, just like the Form of Justice and the Form of Equality. ...
If one believes that language is indeed a Form--the Form of Language, then the same question arises here as it did for Plato: what is the ontological relationship between the Form of Language and the individual languages / instances of language(s) spoken by you and I and the other members of this and other discussion forums?
Why? Why should the syllable be the basic unit of reality, rather than the complete sentence? Odano Sensei also appears to rely on single words, compounds of Chinese characters that rely on the homonyms uniquely created by the Japanese language. Her entire ontological structure relies on the exploitation of the meanings afforded by Japanese kanji compounds. But why should this be the archetype of the language of kotodama?
Ontologically, because language IS first music. As such, it does obey musical form, which is mathematical in structure (as close as one comes to reifying the Ideal Forms.)
Voice is first a form of communicating mood and drama, and that long antedates representational language. Gestural modes antedate both. Ontogenetically, language is first appreciated as a pleasing pattern of sounds adjunct to the first intimately communicative movement any human experiences.
Th relationship is quite plain to me. Using voice in syllabic utterance (do re mi fa so la ti do) in patterns of modulated breathing (kokyu ho) in open and closed forms (in-yo ho), is the root of vocalization -- and gestural forms pertain to vocal rhythm, and are objectified in natural percussion (atemi). It is all of a piece. (Did I mention that I sing?)
Lisa Gerard famously illustrates the way in which we process syllabic music as "language" and having a sense of "meaning" without there being any representational form at all in the nonsense syllables she crafts to express moods in her work (Gladiator
, Blackhawk Down,
as some good accessible examples.) Here
is a good comparison, with Denez Prigent singing in Breton and Gerard adding her vocal syllables in counterpoise. Since no one here likely speaks Breton, it is interesting so see how the two are similarly affective of a sense of meaning -- in the same sense, for me anyway, of the feeling of meaning after hearing or ("speaking in my head") a well crafted poem -- which is different than, say the same length of speech in reasoned argument or mere prose narrative.
Aikido -- is both -- music and gesture -- relating a fundamental human drama -- without the words.