It's really amazing how our linguistic system influences our process of thinking and systems we produce. Also, "unknown unknowns" phenomena (part about blue color in the article) explains why lambda calculus feels so alien :)
It's true that the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis has been largely discredited. But practical use of a language and analytic understanding of the principles that allow it to function are not strictly related.
For Whorf, it was an unquestionable fact that language influences thought to some degree: [...]
He seems to regard it as necessarily true that language affects thought, given
- the fact that language must be used in order to think, and
- the facts about language structure that linguistic analysis discovers.
He also seems to presume that the only structure and logic that thought has is grammatical structure.
These views are not the ones that after Whorf's death came to be known as ‘the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis’ (a sobriquet due to Hoijer 1954).
Nor are they what was called the ‘Whorf thesis’ by Brown and Lenneberg (1954) which was concerned with the relation of obligatory lexical distinctions and thought. Brown and Lenneberg (1954) investigated this question by looking at the relation of color terminology in a language and the classificatory abilities of the speakers of that language.
The issue of the relation between obligatory lexical distinctions and thought is at the heart of what is now called ‘the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis’ or ‘the Whorf Hypothesis’ or ‘Whorfianism’.