The Nature of Swearing

front 6The powerful urge to swear and utter cuss words has its origins deep down in human psyche. They rise out of the swelling cauldron of turbulent human emotions which are in a constant state of friction and tension. When they can no longer be controlled, they spill out through the tongue in the form of swear words. The tongue unleashes a volley of words which, by no means, are sweet to hear, and hurt those to whom they are directed. Not only, do they shake the persons present, but also disturb the calm and peaceful atmosphere. Such is the destructive power of these swear words that their sharp negativity casts a cloud of gloom in the minds of the listeners for a long time to come and portrays a bad impression of the person who utters those words. Though cuss words are in no way acceptable, their increasing use has begun to gnaw the very fabric of a civilized society like a termite, and weaken it from inside.

But it is not only in fits of anger that we utter cuss words. They are spelt in states of anxiety, in jovial moods, and even in utter astonishment. When uttered in those states of mind, they are by no means harmful and offensive in nature. But even those swear words make an indelible mark on people, though for only some moments. Offensive or not, swear words have become not just words, but powerful means of expression and feelings, with numerous connotations and various meanings, when spoken in different social situations. Their negative affects far outweigh the positive aspects and have become widespread in modern conversations and lingo.

Social scientists and psychiatrists studying the reasons behind such liberal use of swear words have come up with results that are nothing but alarming. Curse words, it seems according to research and studies, serve many purposes. Swearing not just releases anger and frustration, but also let other people know how you’re feeling. They channel the emotions inside to flow out as a verbal onslaught and lays bare the hidden anger suppressed within the soul. They also make statements bold and creates a direct and sudden emphasis – statements which otherwise would have been orally spoken sentences.

Whatever the reasons, swearing affects all of us in some way or the other – emotionally, mentally and physically, though the signs are very subtle. Only determined efforts and a cultivated mind will rid us of the habit of swearing and uttering curse words. Let us make a firm resolve not to swear, even if the impulse to swear is very strong. You can always find substitute words and expressions which communicate the same emotions, if you really work around with your language. This initiative to make our language free of cuss words can be an infectious one, if people join hands and swear not to swear. Learn about this more on

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Deconstructing Swearing

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Swearing is so commonplace. We hear it almost every day, in various situations of life. In every single line, every single sentence that is spoken around us, swearing words has become increasingly used in one’s vocabulary. We hear it from friends, family members, strangers we encounter in public places, while commuting in crowded trains, buses, walking or traveling. It seems by the repeated use of swear words that people don’t find it abusive or immoral to use them anymore. Not even adults, children too are using curse words in their day to day language. It is almost shocking to imagine a scenario in the near future, where swearing words are on the tip of every tongue and every thought that crosses the mind comes with its liberal use of swear words. And increasing personal tensions, strife and struggle to etch a decent living, the desire to succeed and difficulty to accept failure, gives rise to an inner turmoil of the mind that acts as a fuel, igniting negativity and hatred among people and spurs them to utter curses and degrade themselves and others.

Such dreaded scenarios are not far off, and if we don’t act today as a community, as a person, and as a responsible human being, we won’t have to wait too long for the day to come. In view of such a disastrous future, let’s delve deep into ourselves and discover swearing in all its ugliness. Since when did we start to swear? Did we hear swear words from someone or did they occur within ourselves on their own? What were the situations that made us swear? Do we swear only when angry, or we swear spontaneously on other occasions too? Questions will make us uncomfortable, for sure. But facing these questions will uncover truths that we fear most and dread to know. It is then that we will see ourselves in a new light. It is this inner cleaning process from which will emerge a new vision of ourselves – a vision that will be pure and devoid of negative forces. This will be the true you and will show you what you were before you wore those cloaks of anger, pride, ego, jealousy and acquired all those negative energies that started to get attracted to you like a huge magnet.

Swearing occurs in the mind. It all begins when we hear and pick up strange sounding words consciously or unconsciously from our peers, elders, friends, strangers and try to comprehend its meaning. Quite often, the meaning or its connotations will become evident from its tone and the situations under which those words were uttered. It gets ingrained in our thinking process unconsciously, over a period of time. Once it takes its hold on our psyche, and when we hear those words again and again, it becomes a part of our unconscious brain and then it does not require any effort on our part to swear. It comes naturally to our tongues and becomes part of our natural conversations. Neither we realise that we are swearing, nor are we able to figure it out why do we utter such words in the first place. We do not find anything wrong in swearing. And when asked the reasons, our mind invents arguments and builds a web of logic to prove why swearing is just no problem at all!! We justify our swearing and transfer the onus on the society and its evils. And it is true to some extent. Isn’t it!!

To escape from the evil clutches of swearing needs a firm focus on moral values and a determined effort on our part to let go of this bad habit. It is an initiative that springs from within ourselves. Supporting this initiative, is a platform to free India and its population from the vices of cursing words and bring some purity to its languages. It gives a social impetus that eggs us on to develop a gaali-free India.

Gaalis, the modern leeches


Gaalis are no less than leeches that feed on our value systems, our moral and emotional health. The more we use gaalis in our life, the more it sucks out the core values out of our lives. It is in our hands to remove the leeches out of our life to be able to live life meaningfully.

Is anyone really proud of using curse words and gaalis to disdain and taunt others? Is this what feeds their ego and makes them feel happy? Does anyone think twice before using curse words and what it actually implies? Most curse words are so vulgar and often used in the context of mothers and daughters. So aren’t people actually insulting mothers and sisters by using curse words? Don’t others mothers and sisters hold the same meaning as it does for one’s own mother and sisters? So why use ‘MC’ and ‘BC’ as part of one’s vocabulary?

The answer is with each and every one of you and so is the solution. It’s time to set an alarm clock in our minds and every time you feel frustrated and try to depend on curse words to vent out your angst, let our biological alarm buzz and remind you to refrain from using gaalis. If not for anyone, do it for mothers and sisters sake. Bring back the real respect into our value systems.

Over to you now! It’s time to inspire others and as responsible citizens, work towards making India Gaali Free.

Learn more about this initiative on Be a Gaali Free Ambassador! Pledge to never use gaalis in front of parents, sisters, wife, children, at work, with friend or in your surroundings. Respect your language and pass on the rich language heritage to your posterity that’s devoid of the filth of gaalis! Do it for the love of your sanskriti.

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