What’s the probability of you understanding every statement thrown at you the way the communicator wants you to do? Well, everything said by someone is not actually what everyone would understand correctly. Here are some of the most-used statements in the world that are often the most misunderstood ones too.
Opportunity comes but once.
This statement is often interpreted to mean that you should take every opportunity that comes your way, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem. However, the original meaning of the statement is actually more nuanced. It comes from the Latin phrase “Occasionam mon facit,” which means “Opportunity does not make itself.” This means that you need to be prepared to seize opportunities when they arise, otherwise, they may pass you by.
For example, let’s say you are offered a job interview. You may be tempted to turn it down because you don’t think you are qualified for the job. However, if you don’t take the interview, you may never know if you could have gotten the job. The point is that you should always be prepared to take advantage of opportunities, even if they seem like long shots.
A picture is worth a thousand words.
This statement is often used to argue that images are more powerful than words in conveying meaning. However, the original meaning of the statement is actually more literal. It comes from the Chinese proverb “一图胜千言,” which literally means “One picture is worth a thousand words.” This proverb was originally used to describe the power of paintings to convey complex ideas in a single image.
For example, the painting “The Thinker” by Auguste Rodin is a powerful image that can convey a wide range of emotions and ideas. The image of a man sitting in deep thought can be interpreted in many different ways, but it always evokes a strong emotional response.
Vox populi, vox Dei.
This Latin phrase means “The voice of the people is the voice of God.” However, this statement is often misunderstood to mean that the majority opinion is always correct. In fact, the original meaning of the phrase is more nuanced. It was originally used to describe the idea that the will of the people should be respected, even if it is not in line with the will of the ruler.
For example, let’s say that a majority of people in a country believe that same-sex marriage should be illegal. However, the government of that country believes that same-sex marriage should be legal. In this case, the phrase “Vox populi, vox Dei” would suggest that the government should respect the will of the people, even though they disagree with it.
Blood is thicker than water.
This English proverb means that family ties are more important than any other kind of relationship. However, this statement is often misunderstood to mean that you should always put your family first, even if they are wrong. In fact, the original meaning of the proverb is more nuanced. It was originally used to describe the idea that the bonds of family are strong and unbreakable.
For example, let’s say that your family is very religious and you disagree with their religious beliefs. The proverb “Blood is thicker than water” would suggest that you should still respect your family’s beliefs, even if you don’t agree with them.
These are just a few examples of the most misunderstood statements in the world. When you hear these statements, it is important to consider the original meaning and context in order to avoid misunderstanding them.