While hiking last week it popped into my head that “evolve” does not capture the process of personal growth as well as the term evolvulate might. What I like about many of the “___ate” words (in addition to the fact that they suggest eating), is that they imply a repetitive and/or cyclical activity or process, not a one shot deal. Think of gyrate, fluctuate, regulate, irrigate, disintegrate. For those who’ve noticed that Sex? is one of the items on this blog’s menu, we have copulate, fornicate, masturbate, stimulate and sadly, with Viagra, medicate, some of which might lead to populate. I won’t go into further detail — I’m going to assume readers have experienced what most of those words point to. Then there are the female body’s monthly cycles (ovulate, menstruate) and, if the parts designed to eliminate waste are working properly, daily purges (you can fill these in). One bodily word that doesn’t quite fit this pattern is prostate, although add an “r” and prostrate does (usually in prayer or yoga, one bows down more than once).
When it comes to human communication, people negotiate. There is a back and forth to, hopefully, reach agreement, an understanding or a decision to move on. And we have irritate, the rubbing (also a process) of someone or something the wrong way. Corroborate usually involve the checking of multiple sources or points of view. It’s not a one shot deal. Then there are the folks who regurgitate someone else’s opinions, perhaps of people who like to cogitate and then loudly postulate in order to differentiate themselves or repudiate others. And most of us want to avoid humans who excoriate or prevaricate. Being around them is sure to frustrate, enervate if not completely discombobulate. That’s when we commiserate in order not to exacerbate or complicate the situation.
Back to personal growth. In the last several years I’ve attended, on average, one week-long retreat annually. These are usually silent, for people who meditate. And some acquaintances have wondered, when I’ve told them I’m going again, “Didn’t you already do that?”, as if once was enough or, wanting to believe I had attended on a whim, that I should seek the next novelty (more on this in an upcoming post). Perhaps for certain folks, one week of silence is sufficient to convince them that it’s not for them, or to catapult them further along their path. But I’ve noticed that if I do an activity repeatedly over time — such as perambulate in the wilderness, or sit quietly in the mornings, or do yoga a few times a week — it helps me evolvulate because I can observe how I have or have not changed, and in what ways.
I think I’ve used enough “__ate” words to satiate.
Well, maybe not.
If I could levitate, then I’d ululate and celebrate!