DO ACTIONS, NOT WORDS, REVEAL A PERSON OR GROUP'S ATTITUDES AND INTENTIONS?
Both actions and words reveal attitudes and intentions
The true attiduteds and intentions of an individual person or a group of individuals will be not easily discovered if the person or the group calculatedly covers or hides them. The complexity of human beings is that they are able to deceive others. However, both the words and the actions reveal some of their true intentions, inclinations, and attitudes, depending on the knowledge, experience, and wisdom of the perceiver.
Words are able to convey the true attitudes. But at the same time, words can be well used as a means to deceive others or to hide the true intentions of the speaker. This is not necessarily lies. When one peroson or a gourp of persons clearly and unequivocally articulate attitudes towardssocial, economic, cultural, or religion problems, these words are used perfectly to convey the thoughts. For instance, when the Chinese president Hu Jintao clealry claimed that the problems in Tibet fall in the scope of Chinese domestic political and cultural issues, these words reveal the attitudes of his administration. But not in all cases humans are willing to entirely and clearly express their attitudes in the form of speeches or words. Under such conditions, words might lead the audiences to go astray. For example, in many cases, when a Chinese girl receives a bandle of rose from her boy friend, she will not use words in literal means. Rather, she, not calculatedly, prefers to use words in figurative or even ambiguous s
enses. A particular but typical sentence in such case is “I hate you”. Paradoxically, when girls say the words, their actions show that they love the boys.
As far as the relationship between actions and true attitudes is concerned, the role actions play are not much different from those of words. That is to say, the actions of a person and a group of persons have two opposite functions. On the one hand they might reflect or mirror the true intention or inclination. This is much common among children. When a child cries, the baby is not satisfied. But in the field of political affairs, the situation might be totally reversed. For instance, when the Chinese King of Han Dynasity cried in front of his crew, he conveyed a complex sense and sensibility, attempting to cover not reveal his true attitude.
As the means of conveyance or communication, both human language and human behavior have at least double functions. Therefore, it is presumptuous to conclude that actions reveal the true attitude while the words have no such a function. The fact is that the true attitudes or intentions of human beings can only be revealed by those who have rich experience, wisdom, and knowledge in language, psychology, and the like.
Another case in point is that when the great lecturer cried two hundred years ago: “Is life so dear? Or peace so sweet? Even to be purchased at the price of slavery and chains?...to give me the liberty or to give me the death!” He clearly stated his point that the people must work together, pray together, and struggle together to build the new country, an independent and interdependent sovereignty. This case once again demonstrates the power of words in expressing the attitudes of a group.