The Interplay of “Sight,” “Sound,” and “Spirit”

The Interplay of “Sight,” “Sound,” and “Spirit”

Comparing occurrences of the words "sight," "sound," and "spirit" in published books.
Comparing occurrences of the words “sight,” “sound,” and “spirit” in published books.

Interesting to compare the number of times that the words “sight,” “sound,” and “spirit” appear in published English-language books over the centuries. They’re all pretty tight until 1800, when “spirit” jumped way ahead, peaking around 1850. In contrast, for the entire 19th century, “sight” and “sound” held steadily together, until 1900, when instances of “sight” started falling off. “Sound,” on the other hand, has held pretty steady now for 200 years, and has held the top spot since 1974.

Personally, I am most partial to “sound,” as it occurs in both internal as well as external phenomena. “Spirit” really applies to one’s internal reality, and “sight” to external reality… but we can hear both the external world as well as our internal world– our bodies, our voices, our heartbeats, our breathing, the creaking of our very bones.

But this is why I’ve chosen “sight . sound .  spirit” as my tagline– between the three senses, all of existence is acknowledged, verified, justified, received, empowered.

via Google Ngram Viewer.

Image by Omar Turcios

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