Lascaux 10 – life and language / © 2015 appendix 2016 Franz Gnaedinger
semantic leaps, ten messages: Cyclops / Argos Eye / soul and vision / Zeus pataer / Athene / English fur / verbal morphospace / "stasis is data" / dingua lingua / Welle and Woge, purse and bag, word and voice
life and language, hunches and ideas from half a century: harvesting ideas / energy flow, rippling space-time / religion paved the way for science / genes body mind / realm of words / verbal equations held together by recursion / overlapping words / solving the cultural equation
Europa (November 16-20, 2015)
Remember the formula of the conditio humana, AD TOR OC CO Mycenaean atoroqo Greek anthropos 'human being' - toward AD bull in motion TOR right eye OC attentive mind CO, toward the bull in motion with open eyes and focused mind, facing the bull, taking him by the horns, coping with fate ...
While the glottal stop OC CO -oqo turned into a labial one, -opos, the formula of the human condition became a word for the human being, anthropos.
A double formula named Europa, originally a Syrian personification of astronomy, OIR OC CO Europa AIR OC CO Europa - watching the place on the horizon where the moon should rise OIR with open eyes OC and focused mind CO, and raising the arms in joy AIR when it actually rises from the predicted place ...
OIR naming the far away place in the east where the moon rises from accounts for Greek eurys 'wide' and Euros 'wind from the east' while OC CO turned into ops 'eye' so that OIR OC CO became eurys-ops Europa 'the wide-glancing one', still fairly close to the original meaning.
CO OC LOP named the organization of a fortified settlement POL - in the middle the ruler of the attentive mind CO surrounded by guards of the open eyes OC along the enveloping hedge or fence or palisade or wall LOP ...
CO OC has a derivative in German guck 'look!' going along with OC CO ops 'eye'. CO OC LOP has derivatives in kyklos 'circle' and *kwekwlos 'wheel' (consider for example the Nation of Towns in the Transural, the circular towns evoking wheels) and in Cyclops, most famous Polyphem, Homeric symbol of Troy, his one eye the acropolis overlooking the river plain, and his body downtown Troy VIIa that provided protected shelter for 5,000 to 10,000 people.
A semantic leap turned CO OC LOP into kyklos-ops kyklops Cyclops, a giant with one single round eye in the middle of the forehead
CO OC OC CO ops 'eye'
leaping over to and taking hold of
LOP OP ops 'eye'
The Tiryns disc or side of the Phaistos Disc deciphered by Derk Ohlenroth can be seen as a both verbal and visual rendering of Middle Helladic Tiryns.
A rosette marks the beginning of the spiral text in the middle, another one the beginning of the ring text on the margin.
The spiral covers the acropolis, from the former Circular Building (a rosette of large blocks around the base still extant in situ) on top of the limestone hill down to the former gate, while the spiral text relates Zeus (in the form of Sseyr) and shining Tiryns (emphatic Slryns) and Eponymous Tiryns (Lord Laertes the gardener in Homer's Odyssey, lineage Zeus Arkeisios Laertes Odysseus Telemachos). The ring covers the former palisade, while the ring text enforces the protection the palisade provided with a banning formula of archaic power.
Moreover, the Tiryns disc offers a perfect visualization of CO OC LOP - the ruler of the focused mind CO in the middle, in the central field, between rosette and ear of grain (Ey in Ss Ey R) surrounded by guards of the open eyes OC all over the acropolis, concentrated around the gate, and placed along the enveloping palisade LOP ...
Correlation of disc and acropolis, North at the top; in this position the head of the ruler in the middle appears upside down; shields yellow, soldiers red ocher tirynsas.GIF
CO for the ruler of the focused mind
OC for the guards of the open eyes
LOP for the enveloping palisade
The same pattern is encoded in the shield of the Argivian soldier,
a central dot surrounded by six dots along the circle of the rim
central dot for the ruler of the focused mind CO
surrounding dots for the guards of the open eyes OC
circle for the enveloping palisade LOP
A central dot surrounded by a circle of dots - appearing four times on the staring plaster head from Mycenae - may have been the Argos Eye tirynsa.JPG
The Argos Eye would have been the emblem of a watchful union of towns in the Argolis, around Tiryns, oldest Argivian town tirynsar.GIF
We have then a fractal pattern on three scales
large scale - alliance of towns
middle scale - single town
small scale - shield
A semantic leap turned CO OC LOP into Cyclops, a one-eyed giant, a mythological figure. Magdalenian restored the original meaning and historical reality preserved in a fine piece of visual language.
(soul and vision)
SAI POL Gothic saiwala Old English sawol sawl New English soul compared the soul to life SAI in a well organized settlement POL.
One aspect of this organization was named CO OC LOP - in the middle the ruler of the focused mind CO surrounded by guards of the open eyes OC along the enveloping hedge or fence or palisade or wall LOP ...
This organization has a parallel in vision: in the middle the central 'ray of vision' accompanied by the mobile attention, surrounded by the field of vigilant attention noticing movements along the margin of the vision field. (Latin video 'I see' derives from PAD for the activity of feet - rays of vision going out from the eyes, exploring the world, and bringing home what they find. Vita 'life' has the same origin: living beings walk around, on their feet.)
Semantic leaps block the view for the comparative method, while Magdalenian gets behind them and explores the sense captured for example in the name of Cyclops which tells us that building towns and organizing them well was a great achievement occupying the mind, generating metaphors, and leaving deep impressions in the long lasting semantic memory.
A double formula named the supreme sky and weather god of the Chalcolithic, Bronze Age and Iron Age
ShA PAD TYR AS CA
DhAG PAD TYR AS CA
ShA for the ruler
PAD for the activity of feet
TYR for the one who overcomes
in the double sense of rule and give
AS for upward
CA for sky
DhAG for able
The ruler ShA goes ahead PAD and overcomes in the double sense of rule and give TYR up above AS in the sky CA, the able one DhAG ... (repetition)
Among the derivatives are ShA PAD TYR Jupitter Jupiter Jovis Giove, DhAG PAD TYR Dis pater, byname of Jupiter; TYR emphatic Middle Helladic Sseyr (Phaistos Disc, Derk Ohlenroth) Doric Sseus (Wilhelm Larfeld) Homeric Zeus, DhAG Dios, genitive of Zeus; ShA CA DhAG CA Jahweh, rider of clouds, a storm and fertility god from Mount Seir (!) in the Negev; ShA PAD Shiva, and TYR CA Durga, an emanation of Shiva's wife ...
ShA PAD TYR AS CA named Giubiasco near Bellinzona in southern Switzerland where the lovely Italian landscape of Lake Locarno goes over into the grim scenery of the Swiss Alps, and where traders heading for the mountains implored good weather from the sky god, while those who came from the north and successfully traversed the alpine barrier thanked for the good weather and the luck they had in their daring enterprise.
DhAG PAD TYR became Latin Dis pater, byname of Jupiter, Illyrian Dei-patrous, Greek Zeus pataer, and Sanskrit dyaus pita. In the case of the Greek form we have a semantic annexation
DhAG Dis Dei dyaus
leaping over to and taking hold of
TYR Sseyr Sseus Zeus
DhAG in the form of *dyeus took over TYR Sseyr Sseus Zeus, making the overcomer who both rules and gives TYR an able one DhAG.
Athene sprang from the head of Zeus. Homer calls her thygater Dios 'daughter of Zeus' (Dios a form of DhAG) already in the opening paragraph of the Odyssey, book 1 line 10. Proto-Indo-European has *dhyg(h)ter 'daughter' going back to Magdalenian DhAG TYR for an able overcomer.
Mythology was flexible. A mother could become a daughter. This might have been the case with Athene who might originally have been an emanation of the goddess of life, and then, more specifically, the goddess of life spreading in ever more settlements along rivers and trading routes flowing or leading toward AD one place while coming from DA another place,
AD DA NAI Athaenae Athene, toward AD from DA to find a good place for a new camp NAI - to find a good place for a new camp or settlement or town on a river or a trading route that flows or leads toward one place while coming from another place ...
AD DA NAI Athaenae Athene was a NAI AD DA naiad, Greek naiax genitive naiadaes, the naiads having been water nymphs presiding over rivers and springs
AD DA NAI Athaenae Athene protected AD DA SAI Odysseus, life SAI on a river that flows toward AD the sea while coming from DA hills or mountains, rivers rising and getting 'angry' when their course is being blocked, whence Greek odyzomai 'to be angry'. Athene protecting Odysseus in Homer's Odyssey personifies history as the way life will take.
BIR meaning fur named the bear as the furry one, also the boar, and via the emphatic doubling BIR BIR the Proto-Indo-European squirrel *werwer. Bern, the Swiss capital, is named for the bear. Cats in the Canton of Bern are called Bora. And bigger furry dogs Barry.
BIR accounts for Latin pella German Fell Pelz English pelt, naming felines for their pella Fell, also they furry ones, for example the cat felis. Pella shifted further to wool and weave. BIR MAN, she working on fur BIR with her right hand MAN, became something like weave-man then woman. (This etymology is confirmed by a Magdalenian site on the Seine where men worked on tools and women on fur.)
BIR has derivatives in Greek byrsa 'hide, fur, leather' and English purse, maybe also in abstract words like for, the content of a fur bag being destined for someone, and fair, the content of the fur bags being shared in a fair manner.
BIR accounts for the six Proto-Indo-European homonyms *bher-
*bher- 'brown' most fur is brown
*bher- 'weave, twine' explained above
*bher- seeth, bubble; roast' cooking in a pit lined with fur,
the hairy side outward, the leathery side inward, filled with water,
hot stones from the fireplace rolled in, making the water boil;
in the case of 'roast' BIR *bher- took over PIR meaning fire
*bher- 'strike (through), split, crack' killing and cutting up
a (furry) animal so that it can be cooked or roasted
*bher- 'carry' to carry or bear the prey, or a fur bag filled with
various goods, also herbs and berries
*bher- '+- cure with spells and/or herbs' healing with magic furs,
also rubbing a paste of herbs and fat on a patient with a fever
and wrapping him or her in warming furs, murmuring spells
(My fist Magdalenian test case dates from August 2008, bear as the furry one versus bear as the brown one.)
Now for English fur, case of an oscillation within what I call the verbal morphospace, achieved via a semantic leap and adoption.
When BIR spread out in ever more derivatives also of the second and third degree, and shifted to pella Fell Pelz pelt wool and weave, the original word persisted on a deep (unconscious) level of the semantic memory, waiting to take over a suitable word. This chance occurred when Proto-Germanic *Fodra turned via Frankish into French fourrer 'line with fur'
BIR meaning fur
leaping over to and adopting
*Fodra ... fourrer 'line with fur'
Here again the four laws of Magdalenian, the first pair from the spring of 2005, and the second pair from the spring of 2006
inverse forms have related meanings
permutations yield words around the same meme
D-words have comparative forms in S-words
important words can have lateral associations
Using my laws I mined a good four-hundred words, pairs, groups of six and a dozen words, in one case a group of six dozen words around DAI for protected area (tectiform signs in cave art) and the comparative form SAI for life, existence (dots in cave art, especially red ocher ones).
How does on get from a Magdalenian word or compound to a related word in a recent language? Use the physiology of speaking, pronounce a word or compound silently, going through all the motions (not just moving the lips as in mouthing) but without giving voice. If you do it normally, giving voice, the word or compound remains stable. But if you do it silently, without giving voice, not even murmuring, the word or compound begins to shift, and if you can reach the recent word you have in mind easily, there is a good chance that the Magdalenian and recent forms are correlated.
From this experiment, which guided my reconstructions for meanwhile a decade, I conclude that phonology and semantic memory are somehow connected and work together in keeping word language stable, fixing words within what I call the verbal morphospace (a loan from evolutionary biology), turning inevitable phonetic shifts into oscillations and thus maintaining a long lasting stasis (another loan from evolutionary biology).
A word can even sink down to an unconscious level of the semantic memory, then leap over to another word that came close in a shifted form, adopt it, and thus return to the surface - an ultimate oscillations demonstrated in the case of BIR and English fur.
The comparative method proceeds backward in time, whereas Magdalenian, relying on cave art and rock art and mobile art, makes an educated guess about a remote past and then proceeds forward in time, switching the temporal perspective, revealing new aspects of language, and replacing the linear determinism of alledged sound laws from the mechanical era by a complex dynamic on a par with evolution and development (evo devo) in biology.
("stasis is data")
Individuals differ from each other, and vary from generation to generation, while species can remain stable for very long periods of time. This phenomenon is called stasis and was the main concern of Stephen Jay Gould- "stasis is data" (see his book on The Structure of Evolutionary Theory).
Also words vary. The constable of Bozeat, Northamptonshire, England, spelled the words jail and hospital as follows in around 1700: Gel and Aspitol, Jeal and Quartridge, Jail and Hospittle, Gayll and Ostetall, Gele and Asptol, Jayl and Aspetell. Considering such a range of spellings we can only be astonished about how stable words commonly are. I explain it via oscillations, however these are achieved.
Oscillations may also be a useful term in the case of biological stasis.
Remember the example of an ultimate oscillation
BIR meaning fur
sinking down to an unconscious level of the semantic memory
then leaping over to and adopting
*Fodra ... fourrer 'line with fur'
and resurfacing in the form of English fur
fairly close to the original BIR
Could such a thing also happen in biology? We have a horizontal gene transfer via bacteria (and maybe also viruses). What if horizontal gene transfers are not passive but active events, the genome using external sources in maintaining stasis?
DhAG meaning able is the Magdalenian word of the most and most varied derivatives, among them Old Latin dingua 'language' that has a cognate in English tongue, a word also meaning language, for example in "Spanish is the loving tongue."
Old Latin dingua became Latin lingua 'language' accounting for French langage 'language' and langue 'tongue'.
Pronounce dingua and lingua repeatedly and notice what the tip of your tongue does: in the former case it moves upward, in the latter case downward. Both words are physiologically close, which allowed a semantic leap.
Where does the l- in lingua come from? The origin is ) or L, in the longer form )OG or LOG for having the say, or the one who has the say. Pronounce the smacking L given as arc ) by curving your tongue, let the tip of your tongue glide along the palate and smack into its wet bed. Among the derivatives of ) and )OG are Greek logos, Hebrew El and Elohim, Arabic Allah, and now also Latin lingua as adoption of DhAG in the form of Old Latin dingua.
DhAG took over TYR Sseyr Sseus Zeus, while )OG took over DhAG dingua in lingua.
(Welle and Woge, purse and bag, word and voice)
Semantic leaps require derivatives of different words getting very close. If they don't get close enough we just have semantic parallels. Here you are with two or even three parallels among derivatives of BIR and PAC.
BIR meaning fur has derivatives in byrsa pella Fell Pelz pelt wool weave, also in wave and billow, and in German Welle 'wave' - Leonardo da Vinci compared hair to flowing water. Further derivatives of BIR are purse and burden, bags made of hide or fur or leather, Greek byrsa 'hide fur leather', French bourse for purse.
PAC named the horse, AS PAC Avestan aspa Sanskrit asva 'horse', upward AS horse PAC, originally small pony-like horses used for transporting loads up a hill or mountain (while AC PAS named the horse of the steppes, riding this animal you get everywhere PAS in an expanse of land with water AC, whence *h1ekwos hippos equus and Epona). PAC has derivatives in back and pack(animal) and bag - horses carrying fur bags on their back, or hanging on both sides from their back. Now picture a herd of horses running down a slope, their backs undulating like waves, German Woge for wave, a synonym of Welle for wave.
Horses neigh, they got a Sanskrit wak Latin vox Italian voce French voix English voice, further derivatives of PAC for horse and PEC for smaller animals and PIC for bird. Latin verbum 'word' may derive from BIR in reference to a tambourine, from DAP BIR, activity of hand DAP fur BIR, the rhythmic sound of a beaten tambourine accompanying the words of a shaman or a shamans. Inverse BIR DAP may account for English word. PAC wak vox voice and BIR verbum or BIR DAP word are then a third semantic parallel
life and language
My first scientific hunch dates from 1963, when I was fourteen years old. If I do a chore in a clever way I save energy, so maybe intelligence and energy are correlated?
A schoolbook told us that animals have neither reason nor language. This upset me. What is language? I decided to answer this question on my own.
1974/75 was my seminal year, and the beginning of my scientific work. Among the insights of that year (from summer to summer) was a basic definition of language. Language is the means of getting help, support and understanding from those we depend upon in one way or another -- and every means of getting help, support and understanding may be called language, on whatever level of life it occurs ... Word language mirrors the use of ever more human made things, and life in an ever more artificial environment, words naming things, and treating all entities as if they were things. Our life requires not only language but a higher form of reasoning as well, since what we are doing now can fall back on us much later, via ever wider loops of things and people and things ... Sentences can be understood as overlapping semantic sets, or as clusters of explicit and implicit verbal equations.
In the 2010s followed the insertion of intelligence and energy. Language in the basic sense of the above definition is a basic feature of life, and may be considered the intelligence of life: coordinated by language we achieve more with the same energy, or the same with less energy.
Half a century of questions and studies led me to the triangle of word language whose corners are
life with needs and wishes
mathematics as logic of building and maintaining
based on the formula a = a
art as human measure in a technical world
based on Goethe's world formula
all is equal, all unequal ...
I could never formulate my hunch from 1963 in terms of physics, but it guides me insofar as I prefer intelligent solutions. Another hunch dates from this year, 2015. What if the gargantuan energy surplus of empty space (Cosmological Constant Problem, see for example Lawrence Krauss, A Universe From Nothing, Free Press New York 2012) absorbs the structure of matter, baryonic and dark matter combined, including the potential of evolving, developing, and generating life?
(energy flow, rippling space-time)
When I do a chore in a clever way I need less energy, so maybe intelligence and energy are correlated?
A partial confirmation of my hunch from 1863 came from Eric Chaisson: "... for us, information is a form of energy, whether flowing, stored, or unrealized" (Eric J. Chaisson, Cosmic Evolution, The Rise of Complexity in Nature, Harvard University Press 2001). Energy flow drives evolution on a cosmic scale, from galaxies (Milky Way) to stars (Sun) to planets (Earth) to plants (biosphere) to animals (human body) to brains (human cranium) to society (modern culture), from lower to higher 'free energy rate density' (quantified by Chaisson) in ever more complex structures – the latter, containing information, then a form of energy.
Language fits in this picture. Coordinated by language we achieve more with the same amount of energy, or the same with less energy. Language is a highly structured means of guiding energy flow in society.
Now for the Cosmological Constant Problem (again). The energy of virtual particles in empty space compared to the energy associated with all of matter (baryonic and dark) is too large by a factor of about ten to the power of one-hundred-and-twenty (Lawrence M. Krauss, A Universe From Nothing, Free Press New York 2012).
Matter has an equivalent in energy: mass times the speed of light squared (Einstein).
What about the structure of matter as encountered in particle physics? All structures we invent, struggle for, build, implement, establish and maintain require energy, so why not also the structure of matter? absorbing the energy surplus of empty space?
Nothing moves faster than light in space, while space itself expanded way faster during inflation. Can there be an upper limit to that velocity? the speed of light times ten to the power of sixty? velocity by which ripples in space-time are spreading? possible means of interstellar communication? (The great velocity was obtained by lifting Einstein's energy-mass equation to a higher level, fill in the mass of the universe and the energy of empty space.)
(religion paved the way for science)
Matter as we know it accounts for not even six per cent of the cosmos. Our picture of the universe might change considerably once we understand dark matter, currently probed at the CERN, and dark energy, still a deep mystery.
What is energy? Eric Chaisson: "The ability to do work or to produce change; an abstract concept invented by nineteenth-century physicists to quantify many different phenomena in Nature." So energy is an ability.
Greek energos 'active, working; energetic, forceful; effective, successful; fertile (of land)' has a German translation in tchtig, from taugen 'to be fit, able'.
Magdalenian DhAG means able, good in the sense of able. Among the very many derivatives are Latin facere 'do, make' present in English effective, also German taugen tauglich tchtig, and fhig 'able'.
Most important among the derivatives of DhAG are Greek theos thea Latin deus dea (incompatible in Proto-Indo-European, well compatible in Magdalenian), Sumerian dingir announcing a deity, and the name of the supreme Celtic god Dagda, the good god in the sense of the able god (Barry Cunliffe), from the emphatic doubling DhAG DhAG able able.
Deities are able ones. Religion was an early way of speaking about abilities including what we now call energy, and thus paved the way for science.
Deities arose from worshipped ancestors who persist in our gene pool, our genome, our genes that are enablers. Religion can be seen as an extended phenotype: our inner enablers give us an idea of what we might achieve in a lifetime, in a century, in an aeon, with our body and beyond our body, via deities who are personified abilities - more than we can realize, but envisioning the impossible we reach out for what is possible.
Athene flew as owl or sea eagle, Hermes on winged sandals. Flying was an ages old dream of mankind. We realized it by building airplanes ... We think (derivative of DhAG) and do (possible derivative of DhAG) and talk (pdoD) and teach (doD) and produce (doD) plenty of things (doD) that lend us abilities we know from divine (doD) beings, often in their animal guises, projections of our inner enablers we call genes or genome.
Why doesn't Richard Dawkins recognize religion as extended phenotype? When reading his descriptions of the 'selfish genes' I was reminded of Greek deities in Homer.
(genes body mind)
Language in the basic sense arises when living beings or entities depend on each other. Body cells communicate by exchanging photons, electrons, and molecules (consider language the vehicle and communication the traffic). Genes depend on body and mind for their replication, body and mind on the genes as enablers, the body depends on the steering mind, and the mind on the sensory input of the body. We may then expect various communications among them. How can mind and body talk to the genes? perhaps via epigenetics? I remember having read that a signal reaches the epigenetic switches (turning on and off a gene) within two minutes. Maybe placebos, meditation, a mother gently stroking the hurting knee of her child, and some esoteric rituals can also work via epigenetics? But how can the body talk to the genes?
Twenty years ago I got a bad medical diagnosis, and fainted. I was a boy again, on a Sunday pleasure walk with my family in the near forest, the sun slanting between the high slender trunks of the fir trees, all very peaceful. Then I woke up, lying on the floor, surrounded by nurses, the sun slanting between the slender vertical elements of the store ... Why was I a boy in my dream? The answer came when I read The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins, edition from 1989. Dawkins mentions a gene that helps the young body but harms the old body, and suggests that we might fool that gene into believing the body was still young ... Maybe my body did just this? Listen, genes, this body is still young, a boy, practically, and has a lot left to do, plenty ideas to work out, so please let it live ... All went well. A doctor gave me two more years, meanwhile I survived for twenty years, without a recidive, and make the best of the time I am given.
Genes and body and mind belong together. Separating the mind - as in the Human Brain Project - results in a severe loss of complexity. Living neurons contain the DNA, electronic neurons don't. Artificial brains can expand but not replace the human mind.
(realm of words)
When we build a house we gather wood, stones, clay, sand, ore, turn them into poles and beams and boards, blocks and slabs, bricks and tiles, glass panes, metal sheets and tubes, whereupon we assemble our building materials along the rules of the various professions engaged in constructing a domicile. And when we speak or write we form words that we combine to sentences along the rules of grammar, then, along the rules of syntax and rhetoric, to a speech, or to paragraphs and chapters and finally a book.
When we speak we shape the world in such a way that our listener may be inclined to help and support us, comparable to a farmer digging canals through which the water can't but flow and irrigate his fields.
The more things we invent, fabricate, form with our hands, own and use, the more words we need. Information technology alone created some twenty thousand English words and terms.
Our material culture is the proper realm of words, and life therein the realm of word language, although both go beyond, naming elements of life and nature as if they were things, which ultimately leads to a paradox. My car, my house, my computer, my clothes, my body, my mind, my soul, my ego, my life - but who am I to whom belong my body, mind, soul, ego, life? Wer bin ich dem mein Ich gehrt? Neither all of the world - cosmos, universe, multiverse, ?? – nor our innermost are things that can be caged in words (except, maybe, in the light of Magdalenian, where German Ding and English thing derive from DhAG meaning able, turning the divine universe and our living innermost into abilities).
Words go beyond their proper realm, and so does the creative power of word language. When I say The sky is blue, I take the sky and paint it blue, and when I say The sun rises, I take the sun and make it rise in the mind of my listener ...
Words and word language going beyond their proper realm indicate our increasing ability of conquering ever more space and turning hostile places into habitable zones where life in its many forms may thrive (invoking again Magdalenian DhAG meaning able).
(verbal equations held together by recursion)
Sentences are verbal equations, often conglomerates of implicit and explicit equations held together by recursion.
I see a red ball rolling down the road
(I - am - a human being, awake, with open eyes)
I - am - seeing
what I see - is - a ball
the ball I see - is - red
the red ball I see - is - rolling down the road
I see a red ball rolling down the road
A conspicuous red blur gliding and bumping across my vision field attracts my mobile attention and alerts my immobile but vigilant attention, my glance follows the mobile attention, takes in the spot which is enlarged by the focusing mobile attention, whereupon, very quickly, knowledge identifies the red spot as a ball, a red ball rolling down the road. If cars drive on the road, and one must expect a boy chasing his lost ball, I prepare myself to hold up the child, or signal to a driver to slow down or stop entirely. The road being a potentially dangerous zone heightens my attention from the beginning and makes me notice the ball even more easily. First I see red and rolling, sensations (from sense) which I then identify as a rolling ball. Sensation first, followed by the object. In my sentence the object comes first and is followed by the sensation
the ball I see - is - red
If I place the sensation first I have a case of emphasis
red - is - the ball I see
In a tv documentary on the Piraha (pee-da-HAN) a native man working on a boat explains what he does. I don't remember it exactly, but it was along this pattern
I whittle at a piece of wood.
Thus it will fit.
I - am - whittling at a piece of wood
the piece of wood I whittle at - is - one that will fit
While the Piraha man makes the recursion in his mind, English has it outspoken.
From another tv documentary I learned that wild turkeys emitting a call, for example a warning call, combine a deeper and a higher modulation, the latter (if I remember correctly) indicating a situation, for example what predator is approaching, and the former how to react
this or that situation (- is - occurring)
this or that predator (- is - approaching)
(you - are - one that may or should) react in this or that way
I see no principle barrier between animal language, simple word language, and elaborate word language coping with a highly specialized life in a more and more artificial word requiring not only many words but also a high level of recursion holding together many verbal equations packed in a longer sentence like this one.
Basically, sentences are verbal equations
the sky - is - blue (sky) (be) (blue) the blue sky
the sun - is - rising (sun) (be) (rising) the rising sun
Their mirror image are overlapping words, one of them a form of 'being' – is, are, was, were, had been, will be, will have been, might be, hardly is, is not, are not, and so on. (In the objectivated form of the blue sky or the rising sun, 'being' is reduced to an implicit presence). The sky is an imaginary dome overarching the land, or a painted sky in a cupola, or the blue line at the top of a child's drawing; the sky by day or by night, on a sunny day or a rainy day; the blue sky we know on our planet and the orange sky on Mars. German Himmel means not only sky but also heaven, heaven in the sense of paradise, the canopy of a Himmelbett English tester bed, also a mood, or a value in the term blue chip for good science or trustworthy stock. Words have sets of meaning that overlap in a sentence.
Interestingly, Piraha (pee-da-HAN) terms for color are actually phrases, koobiai 'white' composed of ko 'eye' and obi 'clear' and ai 'be' (Daniel Everett), being clear or transparent for the eye.
Here we have evidence for early words having been short, and for the building process of longer words in the wake of Magdalenian (that can go further by reducing 'being' to an implicit presence). Consider the formula of the human condition visualized by a Minoan bull leaper, AD TOR OC CO Mycenaean atoroqo Greek anthropos 'human being' – toward AD bull in motion TOR right eye OC attentive mind CO, toward the bull with open eyes and focused mind, facing the bull, taking him by the horns, coping with fate, or (being) someone who copes with fate, a human being, AD TOR OC CO atoroqo anthropos.
(solving the cultural equation)
The Pirahas have no numbers. Living on the sweeping banks of the Maici River in the Amazon rain forest, a basic life in a quasi eternal present, from day to unchanging day, building modest huts and boats, making arrows and bows, hunting and fishing for their daily needs, they have no reason for counting. Their natural environment asks for other abilities, for example discerning a snake from the foliage or branches or stones or waves, and they excel at this sort of task. Their language mirrors their simple life, a language of a few words but rich in prosody conveyed along the five 'channels' (Everett) of speaking singing humming whistling shouting. Their mind is well formed and adapted for their apparently happy life in their given environment.
One day Daniel Everett had been warned of something on the beach. But there was nothing. He stared and stared but only saw white sand. Why did they warn him? He was baffled for a long time. I imagine that this strange warning could actually have been a friendly gesture of adopting him as a grown up 'child' and giving him a proper education: watch out, even if there is nothing, thus you'll gain our sharp and clear vision ...
Problem solving is a question of matching complexities. Human cultures try to match our life and specific natural environment. What abilities are needed? to what extent? in what balance? and which other abilities can be ignored and given up?
The quest for artificial intelligence might inspire a new mathematical discipline that ponders the above questions: mind forming in humans applied to machines. In the framework of such a theory, the mind forming of the Pirahas apparent in their language might be considered a pretty fine solution of the cultural equation on their technological level and in their specific natural environment. A demanding equation solved without numbers.
Europe got the best from Ancient Syria (written November 16-20, 2015)
* Mes condolances pour la France, pays de la libert, galit et fraternit, aussi, dans l'ge de la pierre, des grottes Chauvet et Lascaux, bornes milliaires dans l'volution de l'esprit humain *
Magdalenian AD TOR OC CO Mycenaean atoroqo Greek anthropos 'human being' was a formula for the conditio humana: toward AD bull in motion TOR right eye OC attentive mind CO, facing the approaching bull with open eyes and a focused mind, taking him by the horns, coping with fate.
Marie E.P. Knig identified the magnificient bulls of Lascaux as moon bulls, while my studies reveal that the Minoan bull leaper was a chiffre for the astronomer calculating lunar cycles. Another formula named the astronomer king Minos and his palace Knossos, MUC NOS SAI, bull MUC mind NOS life SAI, the journey of the moon bull calculated by the mind as emblem of human life and existence
MUC NOS SAI Mi NO S or Mi NOS Minos
MUC NOS SAI C NOS Sos Knossos
Cyrus H. Gordon identified the language of Linear A as Northwest Semitic. Jan Best and Robert Stieglitz followed him. Walther Hinz, in their wake, succeeded in deciphering Linear A tablet Hagia Triada 95. One side lists up the amount of cereals for (the priestesses of) Dadumathe (She loved by the master), and the other side the amount of cereals for (the priests of) Adu (Baal, later seen as Cretan Zeus). On Hagia Triada 95 and on many more Minoan tablets appears the name Mi Nu The, which Walther Hinz reads as wheat from mu-nu-ti-um (2200 BC), Ugaritic mnt, and Minnit in the Bible (Ezekiel 27:17), better known as Ebla in Syria, forty kilometers south of Aleppo, by then a fertile region where the best wheat came from, and where also a minotaur had been worshipped, a beast half bull half man. Mi Nu The is an older variant of the above formula
MUC NOS SAI Mi Nu The
and given the same way in hieroglyphic Minoan, Linear A and Linear B – as head of a bull for MUC Mi, as visual pun of a bull leaper on feet hands feet for NOS Nu, and as tree of life for SAI The minos.jpg
(The legend of Minotaur covers an elaborate lunisolar calendar)
Minotaur – half bull half man – lived in the labyrinth of Knossos. Every ninth year king Minos had to offer him seven virgins and seven young men. Theseus dared enter the maze, overcame Minotaur, freed the young people, and with the help of Ariadne's thread they found out of the complex that was built by Daidalos whose name contains DAI for a protected area.
The labyrinth was the palace of the astronomer king Minos at Knossos, and the legend of Minotaur encodes a demanding lunisolar calendar held together by the returning numbers 9 and 19
Minotaur, half bull half man, indicates a double period
of 9 and 235 lunations
Minos impersonates 9 years
each of the seven virgins and seven young men stand for a period
of 19 days, in all 266 days, 14 times 19 days
Theseus personifies 19 years
The 9 lunations of Minotaur counted in the 30 29 30 mode yield 266 days
30 29 30 29 30 29 30 29 30 sum 266
that ask for the 266 days of the young people
19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 sum 266
The 9 years of Minos are seven regular years of 365 days plus two leap years of 366 days, in all 3,287 days, or 173 times 19 days.
And the 19 years of Theseus cope with the 235 lunations of Minotaur, according to an additive number sequence relating years and lunations (y/l)
3/37 8/99 11/136 19/235 30/371
Ariadne's thread may symbolize this and further number sequences (generated by another algorithm) that played a most important role in early astronomy, geometry, and mathematics in general. I found ample evidence for their use in Ancient Egypt and Mesotpotamia.
By the way, the kernos in a corner of the court of the Minoan palace at Mallia near Knossos encodes an alternative calendar based on the ratio 30/371 of the above number sequence: a year has 11 months of 33 days, or 33 long weeks of 11 days, plus 2 and occasionally 3 more days, while 30 years have 332 continuous periods of 33 days, in all 10,956 days, or 371 lunations.
(Syrian province of aqa and the Gbekli Tepe calendar)
An Egyptian papyrus (one of several versions of the Book of the Dead, facsimile London 1899) mentions a Syrian province by the name of aqa. This might have been the wider region of the Gbekli Tepe in southeast Anatolia and northern Syria. The large hill itself would originally have been known as AC CA –– where the earth AC and sky CA are meeting, or where they had been separated from each other in the act of creation ... AC CA was given by two Gbekli Tepe hieroglyphs: (1) a ring for the primeval earth and the hollow for the primeval sky (inhabited by AAR RAA NOS, he of air AAR and light RAA with a mind NOS), and (2) by a lying H whose long horizontal bars represent earth and sky, while the short vertical bar indicates the exchanges between them, especially prayers for rain and the rising smoke of sacrificial fires imploring rain (symbolized by snakes heading upward), and falling rain rewarding the prayers and sacrificial fires (symbolized by snakes heading downward). AC CA was personified by the Indo-European earth goddess akka (German Acker 'field'), by the Egyptian earth god Aker, by the Biblical mother of all life Hawwa English Eve, and, via the inversion CA AC, by the Greek earth goddess Gaia.
(10 000 BC) One version of the Gbekli Tepe lunisolar calendar had a month of 30 days, a year of 12 months (imagine a circle of a dozen poles) and a basic year of 360 days (wherefrom the circle of as many degrees), add 5 and occasionally 6 days (given by the space between a pair of central pillars) and you have a regular year of 365 days and an occasional leap year of 366 days, while 63 continuous periods of 30 days are 1,890 days and correspond to 64 lunations or synodic months (mistake less than one minute per lunation, or half a day in a lifetime).
(7 000 BC) Judging by a beautiful bowl from Tell Halaf in Syria, the astronomers of that place calculated with a period of 25 years that requires 6 leap days and has in all 9,131 days. Five such periods are 125 years or 45,655 days or 1,546 lunations.
The Gbekli Tepe calendar spread widely and saw many variations, for example 30 days for the solar eye and '2 '4 '8 '16 '32 '64 of 30 days or a synodic month for the lunar eye of the Egyptian Horus falcon.
(1 700 BC) Another variant are flowers of eight petals on beautiful Kamares ware from Middle Minoan Crete: each petal a long month of 45 days, all eight petals a basic year of 360 days, add 5 and occasionally 6 days for the tiny circle in the center and you have a regular year of 365 days and an occasional leap year of 366 days, while 21 continuous periods of 45 days are 945 days and correspond to 32 lunations or synodic months.
(1 650 BC) Consider also the flower of eight petals in the center of one side of the Phaistos Disc.
(Europa, originally the Syrian goddess of astronomy)
Let us calculate the Neolithic Syrian lunisolar calendar from Tell Halaf with ancient methods, beginning by counting lunations in the Paleolithic way
30 29 30 29 30 29 30 ... days for 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... lunations
15 and 17 lunations counted that way are 443 and 502 days respectively
17 15 17 15 17 or 17 32 49 64 81 lunations
502 443 502 443 502 or 502 945 1447 1890 2392 days
And again 'Ariadne's thread' relating years and lunations
3/37 8/99 11/136 19/235 30/371
Numbers of the Halaf calendar: 25 years are 19 regular years of 356 days plus 2 leap years of 366 days, in all 9,131 days. Five periods of 25 years are 125 years or 45,655 days or 1,546 lunations
19 x 365 plus 2 x 366 days are 9,131 days for 25 years
5 times 9,131 days are 45,655 days for 125 years
30 30 30 30 8 minus 3 sum 125 years
371 371 371 371 99 minus 37 sum 1,546 lunations
19 x 81 plus 7 are 1,546 lunations
19 x 2392 plus 30 29 30 29 30 29 30 are 45,655 days
(The simple yet clever methods that sail under the radar of math-history yield amazing results. Compare them with the actual numbers: 125 years are 45,655.248... rounded 45,655 days or 1,546.032... rounded 1,546 lunations.)
Astronomy requires not only calculations but first of all and then again and ever again observations. Finding the sliver of the young moon was a great challenge for the early astronomers watching the sky with bare eyes – in fact such a challenge that it may have accounted for English origin from Magdalenian ORI GEN, horizon ORI young moon GEN ... The magnificent bulls in the midsummer hall of Lascaux suggest these numbers for a lunation of alternately 30 and 29 days: young moon 3 days, waxing moon 6 days, full moon 9 days, waning moon 6 days, old moon 3 days, empty moon alternately 3 and 2 days. Now the Syrian astronomers excelled at finding the young moon on the predicted place on the horizon, and formulated a double compound for this challenge and achievement
OIR OC CO AIR OC CO
moon rising from the horizon OIR (permutation of ORI for horizon)
right eye OC attentive mind CO
raising the arms in joy AIR
OIR OC CO means then to look out for the moon rising from the horizon with open eyes and a focused mind, and AIR OC CO to raise the arms in joy when one sees the moon raise from the predicted place on the horizon, watching it with open eyes and a focused mind ...
Remember the formula AD TOR OC CO atoroqo anthropos 'human being'. A similar sound shift occurred in the case of the double compound
OIR OC CO Europa AIR OC CO Europa
Europa would originally have been the Syrian goddess of astronomy, became a Phoenician princess, arrived on the shore of Crete, and is seen in her double appearance on a famous Minoan fresco in a small court of the palace at Knossos, flanking a bull and bull leaper, OIR OC CO on the left side, the perfectly round neck rising as moon above the line of the horizon defined by the sighting line of the woman watching out with an obviously focused mind, on the right side AIR OC CO rising her arms in joy europa1.jpg europa2.jpg
And here Mi Nu The on a Linear A tablet, Mi given as head of a bull, Nu as visual pun of a bull leaper on feet hands feet, and The as an abstract tree of life; Mi from MUC for bull, here the moon bull, Nu from NOS for mind, here the mind of the astronomer, and The from SAI for life, existence, here the human existence depending on astronomy (providing calendars) and on the sciences in general minos.jpg
(Europe got the best from Ancient Syria)
Europa Europe is more than a name, it is a formula of long lasting success: watch out with open eyes and a focused mind for the moon rising above the horizon, ORI OC CO Europa, and raise your arms in joy when you see with your open eyes and attentive mind the moon rise from the predicted place on the horizon, ARI OC CO Europa ...
Observe the sky with open eyes and calculate the heavenly cycles with a focused mind. Study nature and record your findings. But know that we can only approximate the truth, neither really reach nor own it (number sequences and other early mathematical methods provide values around the unknown exact number, you can then choose the value that comes handy in a given calculation and work with integers, the mistakes even out more or less, often amazingly well, but there remains always a small or tiny mistake).
All books have been written, compiled and edited by human beings, even the most inspiring ones. Placing a book above nature – that you may consider God's creation - is hubris, a betrayal of transcendence (which is the very essence of religion), even blasphemy in the name of craving power
We know exactly who God is
and what He wants
He wants what we want
He is our mighty henchman
Europe got the best from Ancient Syria, the name Europa Europe that is a formula: study nature in all appearances, outer and inner nature, engage in the sciences, and in art as human measure in a technical world. Together they will overcome ideologies in the long run, even scientific ones.
And if ancient monuments in Syria are being destroyed, Europe's name will survive. And the spirit of Europa will eventually overcome the pseudo-religious evil spreading in and from her ancient homeland.
We have to do our part. A prospering global society requires fair trade (overall balance of give and get, one word in Magdalenian, GID) and a fair history of civilization including the one of mathematics, logic of building and maintaining. A fair history acknowledging all contributions to our common civilization will encourage good people all over the world.
Appendix from late March and early April 2016: words and compounds naming the horse / computer and hermeneutics in the case of HomerÕs Odyssey / Human Brain Project again (hermeneutic perspective) / computers wonÕt take over (coining a new term: phenospace)
(the horse, the horse, the horse)
CA LAB, sky CA cold LAB, named the winter sun horse of Lascaux, gallop and German Klepper. CA BEL, sky CA warm BEL, named the spring sun horse, in a longer form CA BEL IAS, healing IAS, the warm spring sun healing ailments of a long and harsh winter, ABelios AFelios Helios, Greek sun god with a quadriga of horses. CA BAL, sky CA hot BAL, named the summer sun horse, Latin caballus Italian cavallo French cheval, Spanish caballo.
Hear them run
CA LAB CA LAB CA LAB CA LAB ...
CA BEL CA BEL CA BEL CA BEL ...
CA BAL CA BAL CA BAL CA BAL ...
Magdalenian PAC named the common horse, AS PAC, upward AS horse PAC, the horse of the first Indo-European homeland on the banks of the Amu Darya, centered in the triangle of Termez and Kunduz and Kurgan T'upe, small pony-like horses used for carrying loads up the slope of a hill or mountain, AS PAC Avestan aspa Sanskrit asva for horse. Emphatic PAC AS AS, horse up up, named the personified hot summer wind Afghanetz that blows from the Aral Sea along the Amu Darya up to the Hindukush, the winged horse Pegasos Pegasus, horse of poetry, indicating an oral epic of the first Indo-Europeans, fragments of which might survive in the oldest Greek mythology. The phonetically similar but semantically different compound AC PAS, an expanse of land with water AC everywhere in a plain PAS (here, south and north of me, east and west of me, in all five places, Greek pas pan 'all every' pente penta- 'five') – riding this animal you get everywhere PAS on earth AC = in the steppes of the second and third IE homeland, in the Uralic steppes east of the Rha Volga, and in the Pontic steppes west of the Rha Volga ... AC PAS *hekwos Greek hippos Latin equus, also the Gallo-Roman horse goddess Epona and Finnish hevonen 'horse'. PIE offers *hekwos hippos equus aspa asva. Magdalenian makes a difference, AS PAC aspa asva, AC PAS *hekwos hippos equus Epona hevonen. I consider this one of my strongest Magdalenian test cases.
TYR names the one who overcomes in the double sense of rule and give, emphatic Middle Helladic Sseyr (Phaistos Disc, Derk Ohlenroth) Doric Sseus (Wilhelm Larfeld) Homeric Zeus. Close derivatives of TYR abound in Central Asia. Inverse RYT means spear thrower, archer, accounting for German Ritter 'knight', a riding archer, for Ross und Reiter 'horse and rider', German Ross for horse an emphatic form (analogous to TYR emphatic Sseyr), English hoss horse.
REO means river, accounting for the Rha, modern Volga, river between the second IE homeland in the Uralic steppes and third IE homeland in the Pontic steppes, personified in Minoan Rheia and Greek Rhea, mother of Zeus and Poseidon and Hades, her alter ego the Gallo-Roman horse goddess Epona who rode a horse in lady fashion, accompanied by a bird and a foal and a dog that evoke the emblematic animals of Zeus, an eagle, and of Poseidon, a horse, and of Hades, a dog. The main sanctuary of Epona had been Alesia near a spring of the river Seine, at the base of Mont Ra. Walisian Rhiannon 'horse' is a further derivative of REO, the undulating necks of a herd of running horses evoking the waves of a rushing river.
(computer and hermeneutics in the case of Homer's Odyssey, part 1)
Thinking about machine condensing of language I wondered how a computer would summarize Homer's Odyssey - could a machine possibly come up with a hermeneutic version such as mine?
Odysseus returns home from Troy and sleeps on the shore of Ithaca, one of the ancient names of the Peloponnese and especially of the Argolis, land under the sky of the young Zeus bull (ITA CA Ithaca, young bull ITA sky CA, under the sky of the young Zeus bull vs ATI CA Attika, mature bull ATI sky CA, under the sky of the mature Zeus bull), Ithaca surviving in the name of a relatively small island off the Peloponnese. A long series of dreams brings him to strange places that are - Troy, Troy again and again, blended with other places and periods of time. In his final dream he reaches pleasant Scherie, identified as early Troy by Eberhard Zangger. When he realizes where he is and what a lovely place he destroyed, or will destroy in the time perspective of the Phaeakians, early Trojans, he can't help weeping. Now, still sleeping and dreaming, he falls in a deep dreamless sleep, and arrives home for good, body and soul reunited. On the next morning Athene, Homeric personification of history's course, urges him to cope with the shameless suitors of his faithful wife Penelope who personifies the land (POL LOP Peloponnese, fortified settlement POL enveloping hedge or fence or palisade or wall LOP, and PAS LOP Penelope, everywhere in a plain PAS enveloping palisades or walls LOP, naming the Peloponnese as land of the fortified settlements) – Athene urges Odysseus to cope with those who profit from the land without meeting their obligations.
Could a computer understand symbols and find out whether the Trojan war was for real or just a bardic invention? It has been caused by the abduction of beautiful Helen. How can this have incited a war? Beautiful Helen of the white arms is a symbol, the Homeric symbol of – tin, her white arms tin ingots, her long glittering robes she made herself the symbol of the glittering tin ore cassitterite, and her thread the symbol of tin wire, by then cut out of hammered tin sheet. Her husband xanthos Menelaos is the Homeric symbol of copper, the color xanthos covering all hues of copper ores, yellow brown red. Their daughter lovely Hermione who resembles golden Aphrodite symbolizes bronze, alloy of copper and tin, of a golden shine when freshly cast. Menelaos had a slave woman for a mistress, Homeric symbol of andrasit, a mineral found in the Troas, natural alloy of copper and zinc – zinc in enslaved form, as it were. Their son was strong late come Megapenthes, Homeric symbol of brass, alloy of copper and zinc, harder than bronze, arriving late in the 'family' of metals ... While modern bronze requires five per cent of tin, Mycenaean bronze required a dozen or even fifteen per cent, way more, but there is no tin in Greece, Mycenaean tin came from Central Asia and was bound to pass the Dardanelles where the Trojans laid hands on the precious cargo, abducting Helen, as it were ...
(computer and hermeneutics in the case of Homer's Odyssey, part 2)
Ricardo Mansilla at the Free University of Mexico run a DNA taxonomy program on the Odyssey and found that it combines material of at least a dozen or even sixteen bards. Very fine. This allows a better understanding of how the epic originated. On his first 'adventure' Odysseus encounters Polyphem and on a later one a similar giant, so we can assume that the same stories were told in several versions, varied from bard to bard, and finally the best versions were compiled in the epic, two of them rendering Troy as a giant.
'Much famous' Polyphem resembled more a wooded mountain top standing alone than a man who eats bread. His one eye was the acropolis overlooking the wide river plain and his body downtown Troy VIIa that provided protected shelter for 5,000 to 10,000 people. His den or cave was the harbor in the Besik bay where foreign ships waited for favorable winds, in the epic symbolized as goats and sheep milked by Polyphem, whereas the Achaean ships are symbolized as horses, resting in a river mouthing north of Troy.
The early Trojans – Phaeakians dwelling on the shore of pleasant Scherie (Eberhard Zangger) - had been skilled river pilots navigating foreign sailors through the perilous waters of the Dardanelles, protected by the most noble gods, among them Zeus and Athene, Poseidon and Apollo. However, in later times, they abandoned their former profession and became a sort of pirates on land, asking high fees and tolls, and laying their hands on the precious tin that came from Central Aisa and was bound for Mycenae – abducting beautiful Helen of the white arms in the Homeric symbolism.
Homer 1 of the Iliad would have lived in the time of the first Messenian war; Homer 2 of the Odyssey in the time of the second Messenian war, symbolized by Telemachos 'Far away war' – far away from Troy and far away in time from the Trojan war. Both Homers compiled their epic from ample bardic material, both fearing for the unity of Greece: Northern Greece, Thessaly, Achilles, and Southern Greece, Peloponnese, Agamemnon in the Iliad; 'tripod' of mainland and islands and colonies in the Odyssey. Both Homers cared for the survival of the hopefully eternal Greek civilization, symbolized by the immoveable bed Odysseus and Penelope built around the trunk of the olive tree that had been planted by Lord Laertes the gardener (Eponymus Tiryns on the Phaistos Disc as deciphered by Derk Ohlenroth and interpreted by me). However, there is a difference: Homer 1 believes that all is predestined by the gods, whereas Homer 2 says that we can't hold the gods responsible for all we do.
Hermeneutics, in my opinion, is understanding from within. Computers can help us understand from the outside, enhancing our emphatic and hermeneutic apprehension.
Human Brain Project again (hermeneutic perspective)
The Human Brain Project – based in Lausanne, Western Switzerland, not far from the CERN outside Geneva – has entered its operational phase. Top scientists from all over the world promise a perfect simulation of the entire human brain in form of a giant electronic network.
Not even such a highly ambitious electronic brain could cope with a real brain, as I will show you via my basic definition of language from 1975/75. Language is the means of getting help, support and understanding from those we depend upon in one way or another --- and every means of getting help, support and understanding may be called language, on whatever level of life it occurs.
All of language is motivated by needs and wishes, ultimately by our survival instinct in combination with our individual abilities and limitations. Coordinated by language our small and large communities achieve more with the same energy, or the same with less energy. Following my first scientific hunch from 1963 – energy and intelligence being correlated – I consider language the intelligence of life.
Things get really interesting when we turn the above definition around: where living beings or living entities depend on each other, there is language. Body cells depend on each other, and they communicate by exchanging photons, ions, and molecules. Also body and mind and genes depend on each other: the genes on the body as its vehicle and on the mind steering the body, mind and body on each other, and both on the genes as their enablers. We have then six ways of internal language offered by this vantage point alone, most fascinating the one of the mind addressing the genes via epigenetic switches turning on and off one or another gene.
Now the human brain contains one hundred billion neurons, each connected with one thousand other neurons – a high complexity corresponding to a space of a dozen dimensions –, moreover each neuron contains the full genome including epigenetics. Even if the amazing network could be copied with electronic circuits, none of the simulacra of a neuron contains a genome and epigenetic switches, nor does the artificial brain have a body, let alone a survival instinct – you can turn it on and off as any machine. This means the human brain is right from the beginning way more complex than the one promised by the Human Brain Project.
Illusions of the impossible make the sciences proceed and eventually achieve what is possible. On the other hand I defend my hermeneutic work and perspective, hermeneutics being pushed to the margin and over the edge by academe.
(computers won't take over – coining a term: phenospace)
Reading Richard Dawkins' famous book The Selfish Gene (second edition) I was reminded of the Greek deities in Homer who behave in strikingly similar ways as the genes described by Dawkins do
Darwin postulated globuli carrying the hereditary biological information. Watson and Crick discovered the beautiful double helix DNA with genetic words of three chemical letters each, four different letters yielding 64 permutations or words that encode life on Earth. In reconstructing the Ice Age language I call Magdalenian – lingua franca of shamans and shamanesses in Eurasia – I mined a good four hundred words, most of them having three letters or phonemes and forming permutation groups, allowing very many compounds that were preserved in shamanic formulae, often double formulae. Can this peculiar language be what Richard Dawkins calls an extended phenotype? (The body is the primary phenotype, 'outprint' of the genome, while our productions that go beyond the body are extended phenotypes.)
Genes depend on the body, so there should occur a form of language between them. Could all of language be either an internal or extended phenotype?
DhAG meaning able, good in the sense of able, is the Magdalenian word of the most and most varied derivatives, among them Greek theos Latin deus (well compatible in Magdalenian), Sumerian dingir announcing a deity, and the name of the supreme Celtic god Dagda, the good god in the sense of the able god (Barry Cunliffe), owing to the emphatic doubling DhAG DhAG able able.
Can it be that all our productions, from language to computers, fill the space between our genes as inner enablers and their outward projections? a space we may call phenospace?
Computers don't have their own but are part of our phenospace. Machines increase our abilities and lend power to their owners but won't take over. Moore's law of the doubling of data storing capacity still holds, however, the storing velocity stagnates since 2003, communicated by Intel in 2005. In my opinion the so-called technological singularity is an extrapolation such as the clockwork universe and Laplace's all-knowing demon of the bygone mechanistic era. Sooner or later we come to a bend in the way of science.
Creativity loves winding roads. We will need plenty more of that human resource for integrating ever more technology into life and nature, task of art as human measure in a technical world.
I know nobody who hangs computer graphics in their bedroom. The Alpha CEO with Google in the portfolio is a human being. Could anybody imagine a political version of AlphaGo in the oval office? The highly demanding Chinese board game Go, recently won 4:1 by the Google machine AlphaGo against an Asian grandmaster, has a small set of simple rules whereas the rules of the serious political game fill libraries but still defy our penetration.
Basque and cave art basque