Wittgenstein: ‘The Vehicle Of Thought’

In Ludwig Wittgenstein’s celebrated phrase of informed and abject capitulation: ‘Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.’


Wittgenstein

Ludwig Wittgenstein wrote: ‘When I think in Language there are not meanings going through my mind in addition to the verbal expressions: the language is itself the vehicle of thought’.

Professors have made a nice living arguing about what a ‘Thought’ and a ‘Concept’ is for centuries [using Thought and Concept, of course.]

But here was Wittgenstein saying it’s all mostly words. This mysterious thing we called ‘Thinking’ is made up of just plain old words. Games we play with words.

Don’t believe him of course. Get back on the Meditation Mat and Sit.


The Wittgenstein family in Vienna, summer 1917. From left, siblings Kurt, Paul, and Hermine Wittgenstein; their brother-in-law, Max Salzer; their mother, Leopoldine Wittgenstein; Helene Wittgenstein Salzer; and Ludwig Wittgenstein.

Ludwig Wittgenstein taught Logic and Language at Cambridge with Bertrand Russell [Principia Mathematica]. 

A founder of what for a brief time became celebrated as the new subject of Analytical Philosophy [Philosophy with large helpings of Formal Logic in it].

I always liked Professor Wittgenstein. He was the established star at Cambridge, a serious philosopher who also had a fan-following. [Stranger things happen. Paris shut-down for Jean-Paul Sartre’s funeral.]

And Wittgenstein just turned and walked away from it all once he stopped believing in what he was teaching. That’s intellectual honesty.


See the later posts on Sign, Semiotics, Semantics and Language. I don’t think I have them up on the Site yet. If not, they should be up shortly.