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Author Topic:   Languages and the Creationist account.
Omnivorous
Member (Idle past 375 days)
Posts: 3808
From: Adirondackia
Joined: 07-21-2005


(1)
Message 16 of 32 (633991)
09-17-2011 9:03 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by Portillo
09-17-2011 12:56 AM


Common ground
I suppose every society developed an explanation for the discovery of those who spoke different languages.

It isn't surprising to find similarities in the explanatory myths--they were all invented by people.


"The brakes are good, the tires are fair."

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Wollysaurus
Member (Idle past 1899 days)
Posts: 52
From: US
Joined: 08-25-2011


Message 17 of 32 (633996)
09-17-2011 9:52 PM
Reply to: Message 15 by Portillo
09-17-2011 8:49 PM


Portillo writes:

Well it proves that one language isnt just a crazy biblical myth. But can be found all over the world.

But there is *much* more to the myth than the simple assertion that there was, at some time in human history, a single language. Who knows? Maybe there was. Maybe in the depths of history, there was a unified proto-language of some kind spoken by a human ancestor. I'm not a linguist, so I won't speculate beyond the myth.

However, the myth also specifies that the entire human population was concentrated in one specific location and that, through divine interference, was given different languages and forced to migrate throughout the world (from that specific point). This brings up several key points:

1. Languages were divinely created and directly implanted into humanity
2. The entire human population was concentrated (very recently, say 2,000 BCE give or take if you read the literalists) in one specific location in the middle east
3. At a point, the divinity becomes alarmed (threatened?) by the potential of humanity if they all work together (seriously, how is this not evil?)
4. The divinity creates a plethora of languages, forces the living humans to forget their old language in the process (see #1) and scatter across the land. They go on to colonize the entire world in very short order, simultaneously founding all of the cultures and civilizations which actual evidence shows us predate this supposed event.

You can regard the story as allegory or myth, intended to explain something about our world, or perhaps very vaguely rooted in an actual event, or maybe regard it as simple fiction; or you can take it literally and assign the event a time period. If you take it literally, you have a hefty burden of proof to show that these things actually did happen.

The more I think about it, the more the "Global Flood" debate ties directly into this topic, since they are absolutely interconnected.

I also find it interesting that, after reading through the Flood threads and some of the (imaginative) evidence presented there, no-one has come forward on the creationist side to attempt to seriously defend this myth.

Edited by Wollysaurus, : No reason given.


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caffeine
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Posts: 1261
From: Prague, Czech Republic
Joined: 10-22-2008
Member Rating: 5.4


Message 18 of 32 (634091)
09-19-2011 4:55 AM
Reply to: Message 17 by Wollysaurus
09-17-2011 9:52 PM


But there is *much* more to the myth than the simple assertion that there was, at some time in human history, a single language. Who knows? Maybe there was. Maybe in the depths of history, there was a unified proto-language of some kind spoken by a human ancestor. I'm not a linguist, so I won't speculate beyond the myth.

To me, it seems that you need some kind of divine intervention to bring about a scenario without a common ancestral tongue. The alternative seems to be humans without language spreading over the earth, and then independently creating languages afterwards. This suggests the potential for language was already there, but never expressed until after spreading across the globe.

Of course, that doesn't mean trying to locate the signs of an ancient Ur-tongue isn't a pointless waste of time. Polish and English are two completely different languages, even though their common ancestral tongue is believed to have been spoken only 3,000-4,000 years ago. This period has seen the rise of large, settled societies; the advent of writing, the influence of common lingua frances like Latin and ever increasing communication and travel within and between the two language communities - all factors which should alow their divergence from one another.

To think, then, that any trace of connection would remain between two languages seperated by tens of thousands of years, mostly spoken by small, close-knit societies with minimal contact with outsiders and no written language, is absurd.

Please tell me to shut up if I'm going off topic here!


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Jon
Inactive Member


Message 19 of 32 (634114)
09-19-2011 10:48 AM
Reply to: Message 18 by caffeine
09-19-2011 4:55 AM


This suggests the potential for language was already there, but never expressed until after spreading across the globe.

This is a little problematic: in all known instances where the 'potential for language' is present, language develops.

If there was not a single 'proto-World' language, then we must assume that the potential for language developed after ancient humans had become too dispersed to share a language.

To think, then, that any trace of connection would remain between two languages seperated by tens of thousands of years, mostly spoken by small, close-knit societies with minimal contact with outsiders and no written language, is absurd.

And we may not even know what languages so old would have looked like. Did they utilize similar syllable structuring? The common three-part consonant distinctions? And this is even more true when we start going back so far that we are no longer agreeably dealing with homo sapiens, but instead different human varieties with different brains and different vocal structures. If such critters beget modern humans and their full capacity and potential for language, then the obvious question is: did they possess linguistic abilities? And if so, what was the nature of their 'languages'?

The question of language origins requires us to consider matters of human evolution, and once we do this the Biblical account is clearly sunk. (As if it weren't clearly enough sunk before hand.)

Jon


Love your enemies!

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Dr Adequate
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Posts: 15922
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.8


Message 20 of 32 (634173)
09-19-2011 7:44 PM
Reply to: Message 18 by caffeine
09-19-2011 4:55 AM


Polish and English are two completely different languages, even though their common ancestral tongue is believed to have been spoken only 3,000-4,000 years ago.

Well, this isn't completely true. A look at a Swadesh List for Polish shows lots of recognizable Indo-European roots, some of which are also present in English, such as "nos" for "nose" and "dwo" for "two".


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caffeine
Member
Posts: 1261
From: Prague, Czech Republic
Joined: 10-22-2008
Member Rating: 5.4


Message 21 of 32 (634237)
09-20-2011 3:45 AM
Reply to: Message 20 by Dr Adequate
09-19-2011 7:44 PM


quote:
Well, this isn't completely true. A look at a Swadesh List for Polish shows lots of recognizable Indo-European roots, some of which are also present in English, such as "nos" for "nose" and "dwo" for "two".

Of course there are still plenty of similarities dotted about the languages, that's how we're able to know that they only diverged about 3,500 years ago. My point was just that the differences between Polish and English should pale in comparison to the differences between English and Xhosa, to the point where surviving similarities between the latter two would be indistinguishable from ones that could have arisen by chance.


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Dr Adequate
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Posts: 15922
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.8


Message 22 of 32 (634241)
09-20-2011 4:19 AM
Reply to: Message 21 by caffeine
09-20-2011 3:45 AM


Ah, I see what you mean. Yes, there's a point at which we simply have to give up. Unfortunately, some linguists don't seem to know where that point is. There are protocols which would allow one to distinguish between coincidences and significant data, but where these are most needed they are rarely used.
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IamJoseph
Member (Idle past 1076 days)
Posts: 2822
Joined: 06-30-2007


Message 23 of 32 (634627)
09-23-2011 7:11 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Son Goku
09-12-2011 7:07 AM


quote:
It is commonly believed that the reason for the spread of this language is related to the domestication of the horse by its speakers and their expansion following a farming crisis in Neolithic Europe.


Horses are relatively recent and not seen in all places of geo-history. Language appears began silmutaniously, giving a certain kernal of mystery to the Genesis story of Babel. It does not appear language,a follow-up of speech attribute, was driven by any natural impacting factor other than an inherent trait in a recent or last specie of life forms. It appeared suddenly, bypassing the normal evolutionary tracks by its time factor appearance [the older species should have acquired language and speech first] and of its being unique to one specie only. Language does not appear connected with a superior brain or with the normal collection of all other life form communications.


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Son Goku
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Posts: 1067
From: Ireland
Joined: 07-16-2005
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 24 of 32 (634751)
09-23-2011 6:03 PM
Reply to: Message 23 by IamJoseph
09-23-2011 7:11 AM


Horses and stuff
Horses are relatively recent and not seen in all places of geo-history.

True, I assume you mean domesticated horses, but that doesn't really matter. The claim is that Indo-European spread over India, Persia, Xinjiang and Europe, about 6,000 years ago. So domesticated horses not being present everywhere is actually consistent with that.

I believe the rest of your post is about how language suddenly appeared without having an evolutionary context. There are others here more able to deal with this point, but it doesn't matter, the central problem is that Indo-European is too old for genesis.


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IamJoseph
Member (Idle past 1076 days)
Posts: 2822
Joined: 06-30-2007


Message 25 of 32 (634790)
09-24-2011 1:33 AM
Reply to: Message 24 by Son Goku
09-23-2011 6:03 PM


Re: Horses and stuff
quote:
the central problem is that Indo-European is too old for genesis.


If you mean the Hebrew bible, yes this is a late comer in the ancient world. However, I find it mysterious that Genesis depicts the history of modern man [speech endowed kind] with remarkable credibility. There is no other document which lists names, dates, places and events dating 5000 to 6000 years which matches Genesis. I know of no name, nation, city, king, monument, etc - older than that depicted in Genesis - there is no history beyond 6000.

Edited by IamJoseph, : No reason given.


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Coyote
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Posts: 5778
Joined: 01-12-2008
Member Rating: 3.7


Message 26 of 32 (634849)
09-24-2011 11:24 AM
Reply to: Message 25 by IamJoseph
09-24-2011 1:33 AM


Remarkable credibility?
If you mean the Hebrew bible, yes this is a late comer in the ancient world. However, I find it mysterious that Genesis depicts the history of modern man [speech endowed kind] with remarkable credibility. There is no other document which lists names, dates, places and events dating 5000 to 6000 years which matches Genesis. I know of no name, nation, city, king, monument, etc - older than that depicted in Genesis - there is no history beyond 6000.

Beyond about 6,000 years ago you enter the realm of prehistory and that is defined as before-written history.

But there is a lot of history prior to that date. It is the job of archaeologists to read that history, and we do it quite well.

And if you include paleontology we go back millions of years with human ancestors.

As far as "remarkable credibility" -- for that you have to ignore whoppers like talking snakes and global floods and the tower of Babel.


Religious belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge.

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Portillo
Member (Idle past 1568 days)
Posts: 258
Joined: 11-14-2010


Message 27 of 32 (635117)
09-26-2011 9:48 PM
Reply to: Message 26 by Coyote
09-24-2011 11:24 AM


Re: Remarkable credibility?
quote:
It is the job of archaeologists to read that history, and we do it quite well.

Not neccesarily. William Corliss said that, "The entire picture of human exploration and colonization of our planet is probably radically different from what we have been led to believe". Richard Rudgley said, "the widely accepted view of the human story is wildly inaccurate" and "preconceived opinions have repeatedly led to the rejection of evidence that does not fit with present archaeological dogmas."

Sources:
William Corliss, Archaelogical Revisionism, Science Frontiers 118 (July 1998)
Richard Rudgley, The Lost Civilizations of the Stone Age (New York Free Press 1999)

Edited by Portillo, : No reason given.


And the conspiracy was strong, for the people increased continually - 2 Samuel 15:12

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Coyote
Member
Posts: 5778
Joined: 01-12-2008
Member Rating: 3.7


Message 28 of 32 (635118)
09-26-2011 9:56 PM
Reply to: Message 27 by Portillo
09-26-2011 9:48 PM


Re: Even less credibility?
In response to my statement that, "It is the job of archaeologists to read that history, and we do it quite well" you wrote:

After a lifetime of study, William Corliss concluded, "The entire picture of human exploration and colonization of our planet is probably radically different from what we have been led to believe".

Corliss was not an archaeologist, and from his writings, seems to have been on the fringe of a lot of different fields. Here is his obit:

http://www.cryptomundo.com/cryptozoo-news/corliss-obit/

British scholar Richard Rudgley summed up his study of the ancient world by saying, "the widely accepted view of the human story is wildly inaccurate" and "preconceived opinions have repeatedly led to the rejection of evidence that does not fit with present archaeological dogmas."

Here is the Wiki article on Rudgley:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Rudgley

Not exactly mainstream either.

How about getting some statements from real working archaeologists and from peer-reviewed journals. There are literally hundreds of such journals and they have a lot more credibility than the two sources you posted here.


Religious belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge.

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Portillo
Member (Idle past 1568 days)
Posts: 258
Joined: 11-14-2010


Message 29 of 32 (635133)
09-27-2011 5:06 AM


The mainstream account isnt always the correct one.

And the conspiracy was strong, for the people increased continually - 2 Samuel 15:12

  
frako
Member
Posts: 2694
From: slovenija
Joined: 09-04-2010
Member Rating: 2.1


Message 30 of 32 (635135)
09-27-2011 5:25 AM
Reply to: Message 17 by Wollysaurus
09-17-2011 9:52 PM


3. At a point, the divinity becomes alarmed (threatened?) by the potential of humanity if they all work together (seriously, how is this not evil?)

got reminded of this video lol


Christianity, One woman's lie about an affair that got seriously out of hand

Jesus was a dead jew on a stick nothing more


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