There are two types of words: Written and spoken. There are two types of general structural entities of all phenomena: waves [which correspond to spoken words] and particles such as atoms which correspond to the ink on written words. Of course, written and spoken words are inextricably interrelated and codependent as are waves and particles. What binds the spoken and the written words, waves and particles, are "strings" or vibrational entities. The vibrational rythm, resonance, and frequency of strings [which science has not yet characterized] has been characterized by Buddhism as Namu Myoho renge kyo which may be written (Gohonzon) or spoken (mantra).
The very same waves, particles and strings that comprise words, written or spoken, comprise brain and mind.
"Words can cause *real* confusion but are not themselves real."
Others' words are very real and they can hurt more than a stick or even a knife, not exactly the same way but just as deeply, just as scarring. There have been people who have died over words, broken hearts and wounded egos. The converse is also true, words can stir us to greatness, to soldier on when we can barely crawl, powerful enough to bring us to blissful joy or even to heal very real ailments. Namu Myoho renge kyo can change a man into a Buddha. For this reason we must not take the Gohonzon or the Lotus Sutra lightly or the mantra, Namu Myoho renge kyo. The words themselves are Enlightenment and Buddhahood. The words of the Lotus Sutra are the words of the Original Eternal Buddha Shakyamuni.