Meaning

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Meaning is a term in linguistics and philosophy. It is also a word in everyday life. The basic idea is this: meaning is the information which is sent by speech or messages. What that information is can be inferred by a listener or reader.

Meaning makes sense as part of a conversation between two or more people. The bits of a conversation, like questions and answers, suggestions and explanations, work to help the meaning get across. Requests and instructions are other types of communication which depend on meaning.

Although humans use language to carry meaning, non-verbal communication definitely has meaning. In fact it is far more ancient than human language, and interpreting its meaning is mostly done by the unconscious mind. Messages travel by scent and sight as well as sound. Humans do some of this as well as almost all animals. In humans, facial expressions and the sense of touch are very important. All these things have meaning.