Rheomode: an Arabic construct

David Bohm was a quantum physicist who tried to reconcile the philosophical implications of new discoveries in physics (chiefly quantum behaviour) with art, society, and eastern mysticism. Retaining scientific rigour all the while, which earned him near-universal respect.

His main thesis is expressed in the book Wholeness and the Implicate Order. Very coarsely, it revolves among the distinction between the apparent order, our 4-dimensional spacetime, and a more subtle level of reality that is currently being uncovered by scientists in nearly all fields. He calls this level the "implicate order", in which observable phenomena merge into a continuous state of flux - or rather, they emanate from it. According to Bohm, taking the apparent 4-dimensional level as constituting absolute reality leads to fragmentation of thought and to unending reductionism, which bring about deep confusion about nature and the self.

He argues that language plays a big role in causing this fragmentation, especially the subject-verb-object construction that sometimes creates artificial and unneeded divisions in the description of a phenomenon. To remedy this situation, he introduces the Rheomode (amazingly not described in Wikipedia) which is a new mode of English language in which one generates verbal forms from root verbs. The verbs that he introduces are derived from Latin, like 'to vidate' from 'videre', meaning 'to perceive' as in 'seeing, feeling, understanding' all rolled into one. Transforming this verb using prefixes and suffixes yields meanings derived from the root meaning without the need to invent new verbs.

This might sound familiar to some readers. The Arabic language is in fact built on this principle. Indeed, in his book, Bohm mentions that the Hebrew language features such constructs. In Arabic, Root verbs are 3 (sometimes 4) letters long, and a great number of transformations can be applied to those roots to describe different configurations of the core meaning. I have started repertorying the transformations in the hope of finding a formal language for automatically extracting structural meaning from those transformations.

Of course, the same concept can be expected to exist in most natural languages, but in the few I know, none other supporting the Rheomode so explicitly.