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Re: maize and ancient numeration in ancient India
A broader re-titling of this thread seems appropriate, right?
On Sat, 28 Dec 1996, Milo Gardner wrote:
> Yuri speaks of maize as the best leading indictor that he can
> imagine. Well, I can offer zero being given to India ,as the
> Vedic texts list Maya.
> If the Maya reference in India is well known in other situations,
> I'd like to particularly cite a Historia Mathematica journal
> 'reviews of papers' submitted by Dr. Gupta, on or about Feb. 1994.
> In that article a Ph.D. candidate was researching the history of
> the symbol zero - not the concept that clearly goes back
> to 1800 BC (Egypt, the RMP and Babylon, Plimpton Tablet).
> Without having the article at hand, all that I recall is that
> the Vedic section that cited Maya was read as Ptolemy - a
> gross mis-reading if I ever saw one.
> On 28 Dec 1996, Yuri Kuchinsky wrote:
> > Randal Allison (firstname.lastname@example.org) wrote:
> > : email@example.com (Yuri Kuchinsky) wrote:
> > : >This alone, to me, is a strong indication of antiquity. It is a matter
> > : >well-known to anthropologists that the higher one goes into the
> > : >mountain areas, the more ancient and the more indigenous the tribes
> > : >residing there are. Usually, invading tribes throughout history come
> > : >in from the plains and push the previous residents (the more
> > : >indigenous peoples) to less fertile areas at higher elevations.
> > : >(Alternately, they can be pushed further into the jungle areas.) In
> > : >turn, the previous arrivals to this general area push the even more
> > : >indigenous people ever higher up into the hills. This sort of a
> > : >process was, and of course still is, quite common around the world.
> > : >(The destruction of native cultures is occurring at a very high rate
> > : >currently.)
> > : >
> > : I'm not even going to touch this one...."more indigenous"?? You either
> > : is, or you ain't!! Also, this hypothesis of conquest-and-retreat is not
> > : the norm
> > I think you deliberately try not to see the point I'm trying to make.
> > It's a self-evident process that I often observed myself in my travels
> > around the world, in the Philippines, for example.
> > : <snip>
> > : >Who is minimizing what here? I, for one, _know_ how creative and talented
> > : >the ancient Americans were, and how much they have accomplished. The
> > : >diffusionists that I read only wish to describe the particulars of
> > : >cultural evolution objectively -- the way it was in reality. That reality
> > : >clearly included cultural interaction across the Pacific that went _both
> > : >ways_, starting from a very early date. To pretend that good evidence for
> > : >this does not exist, to close one's eyes to all this, is to choose to
> > : >live in a world of delusion, it seems to me...
> > : So, are you saying that maize came FROM the Americas??
> > Correct.
> > : And are you
> > : admitting that the native peoples of the Americas did indeed have the
> > : ability to creat their own civilizations and cultivate crops unknown in
> > : the Old World??
> > Correct. I always did.
> > : To date, you have stood foursquare in opposition to any
> > : suggestion that anything of importance came from the New World, or even
> > : occured there without Polynesian/Chinese/Japanese, or Old World group _du
> > : jour_ to bring it here. Quite a switch.
> > This is a deliberate distortion of my position. (Are we surprised?) I've
> > always maintained that the sweet potato (that diffused, I think, with
> > human assistance, _from_ America westward) was the best indicator that
> > diffusion was for real. Untill now, that is. Now I think, the corn is the
> > "leading indicator". The importance of this unfolding story of maize is
> > that it strongly indicates _the cultural diffusion_ from America, as well
> > as simply the diffusion of the seeds. (Because the iconographic evidence
> > from these temples indicates that the fertility rituals associated with
> > corn were borrowed by the Old World tribes that also borrowed the seeds).
> > In other words, what we are really seeing is that cross-oceanic travel was
> > not an isolated, perhaps accidental, occurrence of contact. It indicates
> > stronger links, i.e. perhaps repeated trips there and back. This is
> > something that even Needham was loth to postulate as a working hypothesis.
> > Now, we can go further than him, and on a good basis!
> Needham is an excellent source. He shows the Chinese Remainder theorem
> coming to Hellenic era's like 100 AD (about the time of Diophantus).
> Diffusion of math was well known and considered very important
> 2,000 years ago.
> > These are the full implications of this maize evidence. A better smoking
> > gun I could not imagine...
> is zero and another basis for our positional number system greater?
> Wishing everyone a Happy New Year,
> Milo Gardner
> Sacramento, Calif.