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  1. #1

    Default Condescention and ancestors?

    I wonder sometimes if some of the plain spoken historical accounts of ancestors are not a work of condescention?

    I mean I've been listening to a history of the world in 100 objects and they describe the discover of mirrors in a sacred pond in Asia, the historian describes how "there was a belief that there was a God in the lake", I wonder if its as simple as that, if such ideas would appear unreal or silly to us today would they not have appeared similarly so to people in the past?

    I dont know, it just seems like most modernist accounts flatter themselves and make ancestors appear like superstitious idiots, those same ancestors managed to survive, transmit culture and institutions to future generations and have left much in the way of archeology, history, mythology and artifacts which I dont think our present age can or will leave similarly to others.

  2. #2
    Senior Member LeafAndSky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    I wonder sometimes if some of the plain spoken historical accounts of ancestors are not a work of condescention?

    I mean I've been listening to a history of the world in 100 objects and they describe the discover of mirrors in a sacred pond in Asia, the historian describes how "there was a belief that there was a God in the lake", I wonder if its as simple as that, if such ideas would appear unreal or silly to us today would they not have appeared similarly so to people in the past?

    I dont know, it just seems like most modernist accounts flatter themselves and make ancestors appear like superstitious idiots, those same ancestors managed to survive, transmit culture and institutions to future generations and have left much in the way of archeology, history, mythology and artifacts which I dont think our present age can or will leave similarly to others.
    At the county fair the other day, walking through the barn with all the varieties of chickens, my companion remarked on how stupid chickens are.

    Domesticated, I said. Cows, too. The wild ones were a lot smarter.

    Suddenly I thought, Probably people now are the domesticated version of wild ancestors. I think I'm so intelligent and my ancestors were less so? In all likelihood, it's the opposite!

  3. #3
    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    Our ancestors were total morons simply because their worldview was different from ours. In spite of being genetically no different we are much smarter today.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member LeafAndSky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    Our ancestors were total morons simply because their worldview was different from ours. In spite of being genetically no different we are much smarter today.


    "We are the greatest city,
    the greatest nation:
    nothing like us ever was."

    -- Carl Sandburg, Four Preludes on Playthings of the Wind

    About "being genetically no different," though . . . have you read the latest on genetics and genetic change? What you/we/anyone learned in school no longer applies.

    Anyway, intelligence is a debatable or problematic concept however you look at it.

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