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Author Topic: Is Religion Really Needed in the World?  (Read 2359 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: August 24, 2012, 12:51:47 PM »

The poor you will always have with you. Nothing you can do will change that. We live in an imperfect world  and how hard we struggle, at the end of the day the world will still be imperfect. To speak in the words of Leibniz, we live in le meilleur des mondes possibles.  Just deal with it  police
Context is everything.

You do the words of Christ disservice to use them this way.
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« Reply #46 on: August 24, 2012, 01:20:22 PM »

While Aztecs did perform human sacrifice, the quantity of how often they did it and for what purposes they did it for are still up for debate. Most of the sources come from Spaniards who purposely tried to demonize them so that they could gain permissioon and support from Europe to exploit them or something along those lines. Of course, we also have little Aztec sources to draw knowledge from because the Spaniards burned all of their written texts.

EDIT: Also fair to mention....genocides where millions died and suffered were committed because of Christianity opposed to a questionable number of human sacrifices committed because of Aztec neo-paganism. Go figure.
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« Reply #47 on: August 24, 2012, 01:23:06 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

While Aztecs did perform human sacrifice, the quantity of how often they did it and for what purposes they did it for are still up for debate. Most of the sources come from Spaniards who purposely tried to demonize them so that they could gain permissioon and support from Europe to exploit them or something along those lines. Of course, we also have little Aztec sources to draw knowledge from because the Spaniards burned all of their written texts.

Thank you for brilliantly stumbling onto my point Wink

Some scholars and indigenous folks would even argue there NEVER was any human sacrifice.  After all, if hundreds of years in the future Christianity was to have fallen into decline and disappear, and archaeologists unearthed a Church, and read some of our texts and looked at some Passion icons or of the Martyrs, they might get the wrong idea about what our Church was about in their imaginative constructions.  We might even be blatantly accused of CANNIBALISM!! With Meso-American history before the Spanish, we are essentially doing the same things.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #48 on: August 24, 2012, 01:27:34 PM »

The poor you will always have with you. Nothing you can do will change that. We live in an imperfect world  and how hard we struggle, at the end of the day the world will still be imperfect. To speak in the words of Leibniz, we live in le meilleur des mondes possibles.  Just deal with it  police
Context is everything.

You do the words of Christ disservice to use them this way.

Yes, those words are almost always used in the most despicable manner.

And of course we have another quote taken completely out of context. Cyrillic, you actually read Leibniz? His entire Theodicy, Discourse on Metaphysics and Monadology at a minimum?

If not, please don't use his words.

And if you did by unlikely chance actually read those works, if you are going to get it wrong, at least do us the favor and do it in a properly entertaining fashion as Voltaire did or thought provoking fashion as Schopenhauer did.
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« Reply #49 on: August 24, 2012, 01:33:22 PM »

The poor you will always have with you.

Nothing you can do will change that. We live in an imperfect world  and how hard we struggle, at the end of the day the world will still be imperfect.

I agree that we WILL always have the poor with us, however, I disagree with the rest.

It is our duty to take care of those poorer than ourselves.  It is our goal and our hope to alleviate their misery....not to toss up our hands and give up, because we will never be able to make this world a better place.

We are called to do just that.  To make this world a better place....one person, one deed, one word, one smile, one cup of water, bowl of food, shirt or dollar at a time.



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« Reply #50 on: August 24, 2012, 01:39:20 PM »

I just had a thought. Is it possible that helping the poor and improving our present world is a part of being religious, only, it is not the end goal in itself? The end goal is the eternal goal of becoming like God (Theosis) and if we all pursued this goal then our physical world would be a better place/utopia.
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« Reply #51 on: August 24, 2012, 01:41:49 PM »


Absolutely!

We are instructed to care for our neighbors.  It IS part of Orthodoxy. 

You cannot be Orthodox and NOT care for others.  It's not possible.

For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in,... Matthew 25:35
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« Reply #52 on: August 24, 2012, 01:47:40 PM »

Okay I may be having an epiphany here then. Is it even further possible to say that perhaps trying to achieve a utopia in our present world is impossible--or at least very difficult, and that adhering to the guidance and help we receive from God in Orthodoxy that refines our character is the only thing that would even make an earthly utopia possible? Since we are incapable of doing it on our own?
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« Reply #53 on: August 24, 2012, 01:49:32 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

While Aztecs did perform human sacrifice, the quantity of how often they did it and for what purposes they did it for are still up for debate. Most of the sources come from Spaniards who purposely tried to demonize them so that they could gain permissioon and support from Europe to exploit them or something along those lines. Of course, we also have little Aztec sources to draw knowledge from because the Spaniards burned all of their written texts.

Thank you for brilliantly stumbling onto my point Wink

Some scholars and indigenous folks would even argue there NEVER was any human sacrifice.  After all, if hundreds of years in the future Christianity was to have fallen into decline and disappear, and archaeologists unearthed a Church, and read some of our texts and looked at some Passion icons or of the Martyrs, they might get the wrong idea about what our Church was about in their imaginative constructions.  We might even be blatantly accused of CANNIBALISM!! With Meso-American history before the Spanish, we are essentially doing the same things.

stay blessed,
habte selassie

I'm sorry, but no, you people have it backwards. While the actual presence of human sacrifice is debated/debatable, what you've just described, Habte, regarding Mesoamerican history is actually opposite how it went, at least as far as concerns linguists (the people who can actually read the old inscriptions). It used to be, in the days of people like Eric Thompson and his followers (1930s to about the early 1970s) that people had all kinds of fanciful explanations of what the ancient Maya were like and what their monuments and inscriptions must be recording (some said they were histories of regents and monarchs, others constellation-tracking devices, etc.), all of which turned out to be WRONG once the next generation of Mayanists (Dr. Linda Schele, Dr. David Stuart, etc.) actually set about deciphering the hieroglyphs. What emerged was not a picture of peaceful star gazers at all, as a lot of the texts are very, very violent and brutal. Granted, that doesn't make them terribly different than any other people, ancient or modern, but the idea that "we" are accusing them of all kinds of violence without cause is ridiculous. "We" used to believe that they were peaceful and harmless back when we couldn't read what they had written, so we didn't know any better. That is now not the case. While not substantiating obviously self-interested accounts of Roman Catholic conquerors, the idea that Western scholarship has somehow made monsters out of a peaceful people is equally hogwash as the idea that the Mayans were animals who killed children for sport or whatever. These were Mayan histories the Mayanists have been reading for the past 20-30 years, written in their own (pre-Spanish contact) language.

For an actual education on these matters, I'd suggest the NOVA documentary "Cracking the Maya Code", which is all about the process by which ancient Mayan script came to be deciphered. It's a very fascinating story, as are the stories and histories of the Mayans themselves.

(p.s.- I lived next door to three little old Mayan sisters for about 7 years back in California. They never tried to kill or eat me, but they did bring me flan by way of condolence after my mother passed away. That was nice of them.)
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« Reply #54 on: August 24, 2012, 01:56:08 PM »

Playing Devil's advocate, one could also look at our Old Testament and say that we were a brutal type of people. The only way it could really be understood for what it is is through the lens of the Church--rendering an outside attempt to understand and interpret it all as being futile and misguided. One could argue that certain Meso-American texts could be in a similar predicament. Also, fair to mention, the situation with the Aztecs in particular opposed to the Mayans is a bit different simply because there are little to no pre-Colombian documents as far as we know right now to draw knowledge from. Everything we know about them is either from unreliable Spanish sources, archeological finding and/or oral teachings.
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« Reply #55 on: August 24, 2012, 02:01:09 PM »

Playing Devil's advocate, one could also look at our Old Testament and say that we were a brutal type of people. The only way it could really be understood for what it is is through the lens of the Church--rendering an outside attempt to understand and interpret it all as being futile and misguided. One could argue that certain Meso-American texts could be in a similar predicament. Also, fair to mention, the situation with the Aztecs in particular opposed to the Mayans is a bit different simply because there are little to no pre-Colombian documents as far as we know right now to draw knowledge from. Everything we know about them is either from unreliable Spanish sources, archeological finding and/or oral teachings.

It's not really playing the devils advocate when it's the usual revisionist boiler plate.  Then it's just playing the devil.
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« Reply #56 on: August 24, 2012, 02:15:02 PM »

Fair enough, James, but Habte wrote "Mesoamerican", which would include both peoples, and hence the introduction of the Mayans is relevant, since Habte seems to think that evil Western scholars are being unfair, when that isn't the case for the people we have the most pre-Columbian records for, so I don't know why the Aztecs would be especially demonized and others treated fairly (as in the case of modern scholarship on the ancient Maya). Most people studying Mesoamerican languages, anyway, will dip their fingers in both Uto-Aztecan and Mayan languages, as they're right next to each other. I studied both O'odham (Uto-Aztecan) and Mam (Mayan) as an undergraduate, for instance. Both included studies of the cultural background of the people from academic sources, none of which perpetuated this idea that they were cannibals or whatever.

If you're going to trash academia, do it for the right reasons, not based on outdated stereotypes of intellectual conquistadors. It's not the age of "scientific" racism anymore. My adviser at the University of Oregon worked extensively (20+ years) in South America, actually among the Carib-speaking Panare people of Venezuela and others of Suriname ("Carib", or rather its Spanish equivalent, "Caribe", is where we get our English word "Cannibal"). I am happy to report from his first hand accounts that there are no cannibals in those areas, either. It's almost like researchers are there to research, not create fanciful stories of cannibalism and evil just because the people are brown.
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« Reply #57 on: August 24, 2012, 02:19:48 PM »

I just had a thought. Is it possible that helping the poor and improving our present world is a part of being religious, only, it is not the end goal in itself? The end goal is the eternal goal of becoming like God (Theosis) and if we all pursued this goal then our physical world would be a better place/utopia.
James, you really should read the epistle by your namesake. It is fairly short (five chapters) and addresses these issues directly.
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« Reply #58 on: August 24, 2012, 02:58:19 PM »

There is just something about religion and worshipping God..
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« Reply #59 on: August 24, 2012, 09:22:11 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


For an actual education on these matters, I'd suggest the NOVA documentary "Cracking the Maya Code", which is all about the process by which ancient Mayan script came to be deciphered. It's a very fascinating story, as are the stories and histories of the Mayans themselves.

(

Bro, that NOVA was a joke! It actually in my opinion demonstrated all the more how LITTLE we ACTUALLY know about the period, and how much of a guessing game especially Meso-American linguistics is Wink

 The studies of Meso-American languages have no Rosetta stone, indeed, the guys in the 1960s and again in the 1980s were just about as making it up as were the guys before them.  The guys today are a bit more sophisticated in their assumptions,  however again, there conclusions could hardly be considered fact like say in Egyptology.  What happened in the Americas before the Spanish is in many ways as much a mystery today as it was ever.  We have a of archaeological things we've found, but the Spanish burned all the texts, and the glyphs, carvings, and murals which survive are fragmentary and debatable at best.  There is a smug assumption amongst Western academia that they've answered all their questions, and indeed a lot of Mexican universities get caught up in these same fanciful assumptions.  However, I respectfully disagree with a lot of their conclusions, and there are lot of Indians and scholars today who feel the same.  Again, its not that I claim to know what happened in Meso-America, quite the opposite, all I am arguing is that we need to admit just how truly vague our substantive knowledge actually is.

Anyone who pretend to know everything about what happened in Pre-Columbian Meso-America to any certainty is honestly either naive or just wishful thinking.  There are a lot of books, a lot of studies, a lot of conclusions, but the evidence is stretched very thin and from an academic stand point, I truly question the integrity of the methodology. 

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #60 on: August 24, 2012, 10:05:57 PM »

Bro, that NOVA was a joke! It actually in my opinion demonstrated all the more how LITTLE we ACTUALLY know about the period, and how much of a guessing game especially Meso-American linguistics is Wink

I guess you know much better than David Stewart, who was rewarded the McArthur Genius Grant at something like 17 years old for his understanding and advancement of the deciphering of the hieroglyphs, and subsequently taught at Harvard. How silly of me to recommend a brief overview to the layman when you are clearly such a genius! I should have instead insisted that you read book after book on Mayan linguistics, so that you could be certain that you know all there is to know, inside and out. Please, Habte, tell me then how YOU decipher ancient Mayan writings. I'm dying to know what you do that is so much more sound than the people who are already doing so.

Quote
The studies of Meso-American languages have no Rosetta stone, indeed, the guys in the 1960s and again in the 1980s were just about as making it up as were the guys before them.  The guys today are a bit more sophisticated in their assumptions,  however again, there conclusions could hardly be considered fact like say in Egyptology.
 

"Making it up as they go along", huh? I pity the students you teach, with that kind of attitude. You don't get a Ph.D. by making it up as you go along, or if you do, then I'm clearly doing this whole thing all wrong...

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What happened in the Americas before the Spanish is in many ways as much a mystery today as it was ever.  We have a of archaeological things we've found, but the Spanish burned all the texts

Except for the ones they missed.

Quote
There is a smug assumption amongst Western academia that they've answered all their questions, and indeed a lot of Mexican universities get caught up in these same fanciful assumptions.  However, I respectfully disagree with a lot of their conclusions,


What definition of "respectfully" are you using when you accuse "Western academia" (who is that? I've never studied under "Western academia", just actual linguists, doing actual fieldwork) of smug assumptions? Nobody worth their salt working in ANY language is going to say that they've answered all the questions about anything. Please revisit the scientific method sometime.

Quote
Again, its not that I claim to know what happened in Meso-America, quite the opposite, all I am arguing is that we need to admit just how truly vague our substantive knowledge actually is.


That may be what you meant, but what you actually wrote was "We might even be blatantly accused of CANNIBALISM!! With Meso-American history before the Spanish, we are essentially doing the same things." That is wrong. To say that knowledge is incomplete is one thing. I don't think anyone would say otherwise. To accuse entire (vague) fields of science of inherent bias, especially when the record of how the field developed is exactly the opposite of how you're framing it (i.e., it was more biased/less evidence-based before, when people were claiming that the Mayans were all peaceful people) is something else entirely.

Quote
Anyone who pretend to know everything about what happened in Pre-Columbian Meso-America to any certainty is honestly either naive or just wishful thinking.  There are a lot of books, a lot of studies, a lot of conclusions, but the evidence is stretched very thin and from an academic stand point, I truly question the integrity of the methodology.
 

First of all, nobody pretends to know everything about what happened in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica. Again, revisit the scientific method sometime. When you get to the part about knowing everything there is to know about a topic under investigation, please let me know and I will adjust my own approach to research accordingly (probably by not doing it anymore, because what's the point if these other guys know EVERYTHING?). Until then, don't act like you're being even-handed, or are even the slightest bit interested in methodological integrity.
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« Reply #61 on: August 24, 2012, 10:17:05 PM »

Okay I may be having an epiphany here then. Is it even further possible to say that perhaps trying to achieve a utopia in our present world is impossible--or at least very difficult, and that adhering to the guidance and help we receive from God in Orthodoxy that refines our character is the only thing that would even make an earthly utopia possible? Since we are incapable of doing it on our own?
Utopia would be impossible in our state, Unfortantley.
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« Reply #62 on: August 24, 2012, 10:21:42 PM »

dzheremi, I'm glad someone on this board knows more about pre-Columbian Meso-America than I do. I only had one lone (although extremely insightful) class on the subject, and so even while I realize that the white-washing of the peoples (into peace-loving and misunderstood hippies lol) is laughable at best I cannot do the subject justice.
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« Reply #63 on: August 24, 2012, 10:22:48 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

...


Brother, I don't understand why you are taking this all so personally, do you happen to be a Meso-American linguistic? If so, I apologize if my comments have offended you.  Again, I have every right to criticize this academic subject, isn't that the point in the first place? I never claimed to be able to read Mayan, neither do I pretend to fill in the gaps.  What I proposed it that I am VERY skeptical of the current conclusions, and yes, I question the integrity of the assumptions behind the linguistics.  I have that right, those guys are not gods, they are people like you and me, and errors occur.  Remember, there is no Rosetta stone for Mayan.  We have nothing as conclusive to back up.  When even watching that NOVA, let alone reading some anthropology monographs on the subject, you fiind a shocking amount of personal bias inflected in the research.  People say that symbols means something simply because it is their opinion, sometimes on no other grounds than statements like "I think it looks like.." and then this somehow becomes conclusive entirely on the backing of the expertise of the person making the claim? I am sure that these folks are well-educated and work very hard, and I do not mean to disrespect them, but I do firmly disagree with many of their assertions, claims, and assumptions.  Further, I have every right to disagree with them without you having to act like I denied the holocaust or something and then scoff at my integrity as a teacher, as if you've ever sat in one of my lectures in your life.  I see you've taken the same licence to make the same broad and sometimes baseless assumptions that many scholars of Meso-American studies have made since the 1960s..  

However this is not a discussion about Meso-America, and if you'd like to continue this in a more detailed manner, I would love to continue in PMs please, but we are diverting from the OP..

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #64 on: August 24, 2012, 10:53:34 PM »

Bro, that NOVA was a joke! It actually in my opinion demonstrated all the more how LITTLE we ACTUALLY know about the period, and how much of a guessing game especially Meso-American linguistics is Wink

I guess you know much better than David Stewart, who was rewarded the McArthur Genius Grant at something like 17 years old for his understanding and advancement of the deciphering of the hieroglyphs, and subsequently taught at Harvard. How silly of me to recommend a brief overview to the layman when you are clearly such a genius! I should have instead insisted that you read book after book on Mayan linguistics, so that you could be certain that you know all there is to know, inside and out. Please, Habte, tell me then how YOU decipher ancient Mayan writings. I'm dying to know what you do that is so much more sound than the people who are already doing so.

Quote
The studies of Meso-American languages have no Rosetta stone, indeed, the guys in the 1960s and again in the 1980s were just about as making it up as were the guys before them.  The guys today are a bit more sophisticated in their assumptions,  however again, there conclusions could hardly be considered fact like say in Egyptology.
 

"Making it up as they go along", huh? I pity the students you teach, with that kind of attitude. You don't get a Ph.D. by making it up as you go along, or if you do, then I'm clearly doing this whole thing all wrong...

Quote
What happened in the Americas before the Spanish is in many ways as much a mystery today as it was ever.  We have a of archaeological things we've found, but the Spanish burned all the texts

Except for the ones they missed.

Quote
There is a smug assumption amongst Western academia that they've answered all their questions, and indeed a lot of Mexican universities get caught up in these same fanciful assumptions.  However, I respectfully disagree with a lot of their conclusions,


What definition of "respectfully" are you using when you accuse "Western academia" (who is that? I've never studied under "Western academia", just actual linguists, doing actual fieldwork) of smug assumptions? Nobody worth their salt working in ANY language is going to say that they've answered all the questions about anything. Please revisit the scientific method sometime.

Quote
Again, its not that I claim to know what happened in Meso-America, quite the opposite, all I am arguing is that we need to admit just how truly vague our substantive knowledge actually is.


That may be what you meant, but what you actually wrote was "We might even be blatantly accused of CANNIBALISM!! With Meso-American history before the Spanish, we are essentially doing the same things." That is wrong. To say that knowledge is incomplete is one thing. I don't think anyone would say otherwise. To accuse entire (vague) fields of science of inherent bias, especially when the record of how the field developed is exactly the opposite of how you're framing it (i.e., it was more biased/less evidence-based before, when people were claiming that the Mayans were all peaceful people) is something else entirely.

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Anyone who pretend to know everything about what happened in Pre-Columbian Meso-America to any certainty is honestly either naive or just wishful thinking.  There are a lot of books, a lot of studies, a lot of conclusions, but the evidence is stretched very thin and from an academic stand point, I truly question the integrity of the methodology.
 

First of all, nobody pretends to know everything about what happened in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica. Again, revisit the scientific method sometime. When you get to the part about knowing everything there is to know about a topic under investigation, please let me know and I will adjust my own approach to research accordingly (probably by not doing it anymore, because what's the point if these other guys know EVERYTHING?). Until then, don't act like you're being even-handed, or are even the slightest bit interested in methodological integrity.

I have not laughed this hard in quite awhile! excellent post in defense of genuine scholarship and scientific integrity! what else can I say, but that I do share the sentiment about pitying the unsuspecting victims of teacher with said sentiments be it in school or Sunday-school. LOL! Hogwash, poppycock, claptrap, gobbledygook etc... are words that remain alive because of such arguments. Grin
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Only pray for me, that God would give me both inward and outward strength, that I may not only speak, but truly will; and that I may not merely be called a Christian, but really be found to be one. St.Ignatius of Antioch.Epistle to the Romans.
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« Reply #65 on: August 24, 2012, 11:11:28 PM »

Brother, I don't understand why you are taking this all so personally, do you happen to be a Meso-American linguistic? If so, I apologize if my comments have offended you.

Mesoamerican, no. Linguist, yes.  

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Again, I have every right to criticize this academic subject, isn't that the point in the first place?


You have the right to do or say whatever you want. I kind of doubt that that's "the point" (there is a distinction to be made between academic writing and writing for the layperson, after all), but I'm not here to take away your rights. But if you write something that is demonstrably false, it is likewise my right (or anyone else's right) to tell you that, no, that's not how it is.  

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What I proposed it that I am VERY skeptical of the current conclusions, and yes, I question the integrity of the assumptions behind the linguistics.  I have that right, those guys are not gods, they are people like you and me, and errors occur.
 

Of course they do. That's why people refine their hypotheses, and why one view (like Thompson's view) comes to be discredited over time in favor of another.

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Remember, there is no Rosetta stone for Mayan.
 

And?

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We have nothing as conclusive to back up.
 

Um...if we had complete records of the type that you apparently require before you'll actually listen to scientists who work in this field, why would we need to reconstruct the ancient Mayan writing system in the first place? Huh Com'on, Habte, hop on the logic train with me! Cheesy

It's precisely because we don't have "conclusive" records that any of these people outside of the archivists have jobs.

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When even watching that NOVA, let alone reading some anthropology monographs on the subject, you fiind a shocking amount of personal bias inflected in the research.  People say that symbols means something simply because it is their opinion, sometimes on no other grounds than statements like "I think it looks like.." and then this somehow becomes conclusive entirely on the backing of the expertise of the person making the claim?


Nope, that was near the beginning of the story, when the documentary was talking about early/pre-scientific attempts to attach meaning to the glyphs by some French artist (not linguist). The whole point at which we began to understand the glyphs to any degree was when someone (Koronosov, if I remember correctly) began to attach phonetic meaning to the symbols. The look of the gylphs is essentially irrelevant but that they can be attached to the sounds of spoken Mayan via what is already known about the language.

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I am sure that these folks are well-educated and work very hard, and I do not mean to disrespect them, but I do firmly disagree with many of their assertions, claims, and assumptions.  Further, I have every right to disagree with them without you having to act like I denied the holocaust or something and then scoff at my integrity as a teacher, as if you've ever sat in one of my lectures in your life.
 

Well your attitude toward scientific inquiry ("making it up as they go along") is not exactly enlightened, so, yes, the idea of your educating young people is disturbing to me. I am glad that you do not teach in a scientific field. It has nothing to do with your teaching method, but your attitude toward academic scholarship, which is clearly unduly influenced by your personal politics.

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I see you've taken the same licence to make the same broad and sometimes baseless assumptions that many scholars of Meso-American studies have made since the 1960s..  

Case in point. ^

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However this is not a discussion about Meso-America, and if you'd like to continue this in a more detailed manner, I would love to continue in PMs please, but we are diverting from the OP..

Politicized anti-academic ranting is not welcome in my PM box, so no thank you. I do agree that this conversation is over, though. Apologies to the OP and the mods for this diversion.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2012, 11:15:05 PM by dzheremi » Logged

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« Reply #66 on: August 24, 2012, 11:55:08 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Brother, I don't understand why you are taking this all so personally, do you happen to be a Meso-American linguistic? If so, I apologize if my comments have offended you.

Mesoamerican, no. Linguist, yes.  


Then honestly what business have you assuming you know the particulars of Meso-Americans more than me to be so mean-spirited against my criticism? I have every right to disagree with the current scholarly conclusions as you have the right to agree with them.  I didn't insult you personally for believing in them, but you've continued to be rude to me for expressing my honest opinions, and in what seems to be in a particular subject to which you are no more or less an expert than myself.

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\But if you write something that is demonstrably false, it is likewise my right (or anyone else's right) to tell you that, no, that's not how it is.  

That my friend is merely your opinion, and as you've previously admitted, your a bit out of your expertise to be suddenly pontificating against my own.  Smiley

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Of course they do. That's why people refine their hypotheses, and why one view (like Thompson's view) comes to be discredited over time in favor of another.
Thank you, my brother that is entirely my point.  Hypotheses, not necessarily conclusive facts, hence debatable.  We can further debate without using insults.  "Western" academia was not meant to be an insulting term, rather to denote that these folks are not always the Mayans themselves.      


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Well your attitude toward scientific inquiry ("making it up as they go along") is not exactly enlightened, so, yes, the idea of your educating young people is disturbing to me. I am glad that you do not teach in a scientific field. It has nothing to do with your teaching method, but your attitude toward academic scholarship, which is clearly unduly influenced by your personal politics.

I make no intentions to demean scientific inquiry in general, in fact I rather enjoy the boring details of good archaeology, anthropology, and linguistics.  However, MY ENTIRE POINT is that I personally criticize the shallowness of the current studies and conclusions within Meso-American studies, particularly in regards to linguistics Wink

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Politicized anti-academic ranting is not welcome in my PM box, so no thank you. I do agree that this conversation is over, though. Apologies to the OP and the mods for this diversion.

Again, that is your assertion that I am anti-academic.  Hardly!! I love academic studies. Tongue  However, I am highly critical again of the current studies within the field of Meso-America.

Now that is enough of my own two-cents off-topic, I just felt it important to clarify, because you (and others here also may have) really misunderstand me and my point of contention.  

Please, no hard feelings, but by the way, you again didn't have to be so mean-spirited and even scathing in your responses to me, that was completely unnecessary.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
« Last Edit: August 24, 2012, 11:58:20 PM by HabteSelassie » Logged

"Yet stand aloof from stupid questionings and geneologies and strifes and fightings about law, for they are without benefit and vain." Titus 3:10
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« Reply #67 on: August 25, 2012, 01:02:25 AM »

Then honestly what business have you assuming you know the particulars of Meso-Americans more than me to be so mean-spirited against my criticism?

Because I know how my field works?  Huh It's not like linguists working on Mesoamerican languages operate by different rules than the rest of us (besides, I have worked with both Uto-Aztecan and Mayan languages in the past).

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I have every right to disagree with the current scholarly conclusions as you have the right to agree with them.
 

I have not disagreed with this, and I'll continue to not disagree with it. You can think and do whatever you want.

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I didn't insult you personally for believing in them, but you've continued to be rude to me for expressing my honest opinions, and in what seems to be in a particular subject to which you are no more or less an expert than myself.

Once again, I know how my field works. There's no special section of linguistics wherein Mayan scholars are trained so as to make their work inscrutable to someone who works primarily with Afroasiatic languages, like me. The same principles that guided the translation of Mayan earlier guided the translation of the Rosetta Stone that you keep mentioning, namely, the connection of previously "mystical"/assumed to be non-linguistic signs to the actual sounds of a spoken language. So while I am not a Mayan scholar, I can tell the difference between someone who knows what they're talking about and someone who doesn't.

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That my friend is merely your opinion, and as you've previously admitted, your a bit out of your expertise to be suddenly pontificating against my own.  Smiley

Please read the previous paragraph to understand why your impression is wrong. We are in very different fields, you and I. I don't tell you how history or civics or whatever it is you teach works. I'd appreciate it if you'd extend me the same courtesy.

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Thank you, my brother that is entirely my point.  Hypotheses, not necessarily conclusive facts, hence debatable.  We can further debate without using insults.  "Western" academia was not meant to be an insulting term, rather to denote that these folks are not always the Mayans themselves.

Many things are debatable. That doesn't mean that every debate is of equal merit. A debate between a cardiologist and a rodeo clown on the merits of advanced surgical techniques can hardly be characterized as a debate between two people whose opinions are of equal weight, can they? If you're not involved in the field, how could you possibly have counterarguments to the theories presented? By all means stick with your opinion, but it's pretty hilarious that you say I'm out of my league when you're not even in the ballpark, my friend.

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I make no intentions to demean scientific inquiry in general, in fact I rather enjoy the boring details of good archaeology, anthropology, and linguistics.  However, MY ENTIRE POINT is that I personally criticize the shallowness of the current studies and conclusions within Meso-American studies, particularly in regards to linguistics Wink

And my point is that you don't seem to (even try to) understand what you're criticizing before stating your grossly uninformed opinion. Sorry to be so blunt, but I'm tiring of this and I thought we were done with this conversation anyway. Come back after you've done a few hundred reconstructions of your own (or at least taken a historical linguistics and a field methods course), then we can talk. Trying to convince you that people aren't "just making it up as they go along" is useless when you are committed to that particular piece of ignorance all in the name of expressing an opinion that I've never even slightly suggested that you can't have in the first place.

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Again, that is your assertion that I am anti-academic.  Hardly!! I love academic studies. Tongue  However, I am highly critical again of the current studies within the field of Meso-America.

Okay.

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Now that is enough of my own two-cents off-topic, I just felt it important to clarify, because you (and others here also may have) really misunderstand me and my point of contention.  

Please, no hard feelings, but by the way, you again didn't have to be so mean-spirited and even scathing in your responses to me, that was completely unnecessary.

Again, my interest is in defending the scientific method, particularly as it applies to my field, and the (improvable, but usually earnestly commendable) hard work of scholars who, let's not lose sight of this, are contributing to the knowledge of all humanity, including the Mesoamerican people who would like to know this information for the purposes of reclaiming their own histories from the "Western academics" you have accused of being smug know-it-alls. Funny how that works.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2012, 01:05:51 AM by dzheremi » Logged

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« Reply #68 on: August 25, 2012, 04:20:47 AM »

The poor you will always have with you. Nothing you can do will change that. We live in an imperfect world  and how hard we struggle, at the end of the day the world will still be imperfect. To speak in the words of Leibniz, we live in le meilleur des mondes possibles.  Just deal with it  police
Context is everything.

You do the words of Christ disservice to use them this way.

Yes, those words are almost always used in the most despicable manner.

And of course we have another quote taken completely out of context. Cyrillic, you actually read Leibniz? His entire Theodicy, Discourse on Metaphysics and Monadology at a minimum?

If not, please don't use his words.

And if you did by unlikely chance actually read those works, if you are going to get it wrong, at least do us the favor and do it in a properly entertaining fashion as Voltaire did or thought provoking fashion as Schopenhauer did.

I read it and thought that it made some sense, but was weird at other parts. At the very least it didn't deserve the ridicule of a Candide. I just liked the quote, not  being at utopianist myself.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2012, 04:24:04 AM by Cyrillic » Logged

"And the Devil did grin, for his darling sin
is pride that apes humility."
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