You Can Say Everything with Just a Look

· October 26, 2016

We don’t have to say anything to each other. All we need is a look that contains every “I love you” we’ve said, every kiss we’ve shared, every promise we’ve made, and every touch that’s been tattooed on our skin. Because when your eyes find mine, there are no words. Our hearts dance to the rhythm of the universe, right there between your gaze and mine…

Linguists say that even though love is the most universal feeling, subtle differences in the way it’s expressed make it unique, almost untranslatable, in each country. In Japan, for example, the term “Koi no yokan” means something like the intense and inexplicable sensation you feel when you look at someone that you’ll always love.

You’re the reason for my blank stares and foolish laughter. You’re the person I want to look at every day and see myself reflected in the warm ocean of your eyes…

In sign language, “I love you” can be expressed in various ways. One way is by raising your index finger, pinkie, and thumb. The magic in this gesture is exceptional, because you don’t need a voice or words made by sounds. The feeling continues to be the same, just like in any language in any corner of the planet.

However, perhaps the most universal language you can use to convey true love is through looks, where emotions burn, gratify, and captivate. Although apparently, we still need words to help us out…

rose in the mountains

A look, and “I love you” in a thousand languages

They say that love is a chemical shipwreck, that desire –  which includes every promise traced beneath the sheets, every nighttime walk full of kisses and laughter – is nothing more than the result of a complex machinery of neurotransmitters and hormones.


This is certainly hard to believe. Because love is more than just chemistry. It’s a moment. It’s a look that attracts you to someone without knowing why. And it’s taking the risk to say “I love you” even though you’re afraid, as if your whole life depended on it. Maybe that’s why humans have always tried to bottle each of these inexplicable, contradictory, intense, and magical emotions into language. Let’s look at a few examples.

  • Firgun. This Hebrew word means feeling happy because someone you love has done something good.
  • Dorn. This Romanian word refers to the pain you feel when you’re not with the person you love.
  • Merak. When you love someone, when you do something that strongly pleases you, it feels like you are one with the universe. This wonderful feeling, so complete and intense, is something that the Serbs tried to capture with this word.
  • Cwtch, from Welsh. It’s the amazing hug you receive from your partner.
  • Naz, from Urdu. It refers to the pride of feeling loved.
  • In the Yaghan language, spoken by the indigenous people of the southernmost tip of South America, the word Mamihlapinatapai describes what happens when two people look at each other and know that they both like each other, but both are too shy to make the first move.
native americans

A Hug Is a Love Poem Written on the Skin

Silent love

No part of the body is home to more emotional weight than the eyes. That’s why it doesn’t really matter too much which words you say. Because it’s pretty likely that you already knew you were loved long before those words were spoken, thanks to those shimmering eyes, that gaze that holds you, that seeks you, that never needs subtitles to describe what the soul feels.

Silent love says much more than a sentence, a conversation, or the best card in the world. In fact, when words stop, hands begin to search, mouths find each other to paint a picture with kisses, and bodies touch to play the true game of love, where silence reigns and everything is genuine.

couple

However, we’re always going to have to communicate to build love. Whether it’s with sign language, or learning how to speak the language of the person you love, you have to communicate to give shape to the spark that ignited in your heart.

According to Gary Chapman, author of The 5 Love Languages, the physical expression of affection and passion is just a part of what constitutes a stable and happy relationship. People need to receive affection, support, empathetic communication, and understanding from their partner, who must be able to say in words everything they express with their eyes.

Because as they say, love starts with a look, is spoken with a word, is felt with a kiss, and sometimes, is lost with a tear.

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