^^ To me it shows that the meaning of some words evolve over time, and that we have the power to imbue words with meaning that can be recognisable outside strict dictionary or historical definitions.
True enough - I'm generally a fan of words mutating over time. Like I said though - when you expand the meaning of a word that previously just meant "A" to now cover "A and B", what word do you use when you ONLY want to describe "A"?
To try to pull it back to this thread.....it certainly appears that Junebug was using the "just A" form of the word "curse" when she began this thread. She mentioned "superstitions", and made clear that she really wanted responses from theists rather than boring old "cause and effect" atheists.
She suggested that maybe the tornados were happening because of early-settlers treatment of native Americans, and 1800s treatment of slaves.
So I certainly took the view that she meant the "A Only" meaning of curse.....so I can understand (and hope you can understand too) the frustration and confusion when a couple pages in, Junebug suddenly asked "Say I don't change the oil in my car. Have I not cursed myself to have engine failure?" which appeared to suddenly shift the terms of "curse" to a very rational cause-and-effect "B only" definition. Particularly when she then made clear that what she meant by "curse" was "a vindicatory action imposed on you from another."
(Actually, even there it's not clear what she meant. I took it to be a mis-stating of "vindictive", but possibly she actually meant "vindicatory", in the sense that "the effects that they experienced were a vindication of their action".....it doesn't QUITE make sense, but maybe that is what she meant - I don't know.
In a discussion where we are already talking about such vague concepts as are described by common nouns, that can mean slightly different things to different people, it would be preferable if the usage remained static.
Words evolving over time, I can deal with. Words changing over the course of a 3-page thread.....that's something else!