World Arabic Language Day: Celebrating Linguistic Unity and Promoting Global Understanding
Dr. Khaled Al Ahdal
As we approach December 18th, the world prepares to celebrate World Arabic Language Day, a momentous occasion that calls for a global reflection on the power of language. As I ponder on the significance of this day, I am reminded of the immense potential that lies within language to foster goodwill and understanding among diverse communities. In light of this, I am moved to share my thoughts with the world, with the hope that they might inspire a collective effort towards building bridges of communication and unity across all languages.
Since Noam Chomsky came out with the notion of language universals, it has been accepted as a fact that although each language has its personality, its cultural roots, and its specific features, what they share among themselves outweighs what makes them different from one another. In other words, all human languages, though each one is cut out in its own way, are not only similar but also identical. There is no language of the world, which does not have nouns, adjectives, and adverbs. There is no language in the world which has no device for making statements, asking questions, making requests, giving orders, and expressing exclamations. There is no language in the world which has no vocabulary for love and affection, respect and compliments, differences and hostilities. There is no language in the world which has no device for expressing time, space, and frequency.
The time has now come for us to realize that linguistic quarrels are now matters of the past, linguistic differences, rivalry and hostilities have no real basis. God has designed the blueprint of the human brain in such a way that a human baby can learn any language it is exposed to. Time has come for all of us, therefore, to recognize that irrespective of which language community we belong to, we are all the same brothers and sisters manifesting the same human urge, the same human inclination, and the same human propensities. What is needed is not rivalry, jealousy, hostility, or animosity between different language communities but a creative understanding, goodwill, mutual love and support, building for a better world, a more cordial and loving universe, and a more universal congenial environment for future generations.
Language not only enabled the human race to transcend physical violence, it also enabled them to rise to greater and still greater heights of refinement and sublimity. Had there been no English, could there be a Shakespeare, had there been no Greek, could there even be a Homer, had there been no Latin, could there ever be Seneca, had there been no French language, could there ever be an Albert Camus or a Sartre, had there been no Arabic language, could there ever be Imru Alqais or Al-Mutanabi? It is language that makes us human; it is language that enables us to think in terms of sophistication and sublimities.
By its very nature, language encourages connectivity. The very nature of language is the nature of interconnectivity of mutual give and take. May all of us say to ourselves forever and ever that although we may come from different language communities of the world, we are, linguistically speaking, basically the same and we will make creative use of this basic unity and will endeavor thereafter to create a better world of mutual understanding and cordial relations.