What about being pentalingual?

MSNBC – Being bilingual may keep your mind young

Two languages are better than one when it comes to keeping the brain young, Canadian researchers reported Monday.

Older adults who grew up bilingual had quicker minds when tested than people who spoke only one language, the researchers found. They showed less of the natural decline associated with aging.(via Jivha)

I grew up learning five languages (Kannada, Hindi, English Marathi and Tulu) in my childhood. I can read all four out of the five. (Tulu has no script, so no one can read it) I can speak 3 out of 5 fluently (Kannada, English and Hindi) and write 3 out of 5 well (English, Hindi and Marathi)
I am not bragging. Just saying…

18 thoughts on “What about being pentalingual?

  1. They said Bi-lingual.

    Are you falling prey to hasty generalisations Ravi?

    Can a cartel member fall prey to this disease? Bad news, ain’t it?

  2. Yes, Nitin. That risk is always there. I remember reading about a Harvard Medical School research on the effects of meditation on body.

    The meditation technique was simple – deep breathing accompanied by repetition of either a number or a sylable. They measured things such as blood pressure, pulse rate and oxygen content in the blood. These were monitored every day over a period of time.

    Some volunteers reported they were feeling great after these half-an-hour sessions. But in even those who didnt feel great, the researchers found meditation had a positive effect on bp, oxygen content etc.

    However, those who meditated longer – for say 2, 3, 4 hours – didnt get these benefits.

    Who knows, two languages may make your mind quicker, but a third one may slow it down.

  3. Ravages, If you carefully read the post, you will realise that no where have I claimed that learning 5 languages (actually 7 now. I can sort-of understand Tamil and Sanskrit) actually improved my mind. I was just professing curiousity about what effect it would have on my mind. Who is generalising hastily now?

  4. Ramnath, that must be because those who meditated for 2 hours-plus went off to sleep and suffered the ill-effects of sleep-deprivation rather than the beneficial effects of meditation.

  5. But they havent explicity mentioned more than 2 languages. They have only mentioned two languages. That is where I think you are jumping to conclusions 😉

  6. Methinks Ravages is obsessed with logical fallacies. He should be sent to rehab, or else he will go crazy, quit the “ad” world, become a rapper and call himself “hominem”.

  7. Firstly, it is letter and not alphabet. (An alphabet is a collection of letters)
    Secondly it is three letters not one. (Marathi has special letters which make it possible to pronounce bat and ball distinctly from bite and bowl)
    Thirdly, have you never padded your resume in your life?
    Finally, I must warn you that if you ever get murdered, the police are going to have a very difficult time narrowing down the list of suspects.

  8. Now that you put your reasoning forth in such a convincing manner, yes, writing marathi is really very different from writing hindi. You are indeed pentalingual!!! I genuflect!

  9. Languages are deeply assosciated with culture. I guess one won’t find an atomic cultutal segment that uses more than one distinct language.

    And as a rule of thumb, Ravi, the more languages you know… the better it is for your brain (more densely interconnected neurons).

    BTW, it’s said that Narsimha Rao at knew more than 13 languages. Now that’s something isn’t it?

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  11. Hi Ravikiran
    One correction about Tulu. It did have a script. You may find loads of references on web about its script and origin.Tulu is now written in Kannada language (!!!).

  12. English, urdu, hindi, Gujrati, Burmese, Japanese and Turkish.

    Fatality 😀 Currently attempting to master Polish.

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