Which lanugage do you think in?

Slovak proverb says, kolko jazykov vies, tolko krat si clovekom. People learn languages for various reasons. For study, work, personality development and so on. Learning language has so many plus points that no one would generally say that it is one of the main causes that makes us lose our original identity. Identity, here, refers to the basic idiosyncrasies, gestures, movements and facial expressions that is typical to one by birth and culture of his origin.

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Mainly, this effect occurs when one learns those languages that are copletely different. For e.g. slovak and English, Japenese and German. Lack of synchronization between oral movements and body language or say gestures may present somebody in a completely contrasting way, the result of which causes unusual movements of hands, body etc. Being a foreign student from Nepal, I have personally faced such problems in the beginning while trying to speak Slovak. In Nepal, I used to speak Nepali and English simultaneously from my childhood. I didn't feel such complication in these two languages however, they are absolutely diffrent both in written and spoken. To my surprize when it came to slovak language, I had to face problems like lack of match between my thinking and expressing. What I wanted to say was not in harmony with what i said and that presented me completely different than I was. Many psychoanalysts insist on the fact the whatever changes may be acquired during lifetime, the basic instinct always remains the same.

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Very often slovak colleagues ask to me, "Which language do you think in?" Till today I don't now its exact answer whether in Nepali or in English or in slovak? My experience tells me that language which one uses all the time is his first language regardless of the mother tongue or number of languages one excels in. I have first hand experience of seeing friends having problem to talk in their mother tongue after staying long time in foreign land. It doesn't mean he has forgotton his mother tongue. At the moment, mother tonguge is passive and unused. 

This reminds me of the law of use and disuse of the organs in "The theory of evolution". The organ which is used frequently becomes more active and modified the one not in use slowly passive and extinct. Same is with the language.

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 This may not apply to the professional and well conversant of many languages. But the majority of speakers face problems mentioned above.

sushil pandey

sushil pandey

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I am originally from Nepal. Currently, I study in Bratislava. Zoznam autorových rubrík:  SúkromnéNezaradené

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