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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Postcards from the Basque Coutry (Aralar)


Not all
postcards have to be about urban settings and political unrest. This one is most postcard-like than others, in fact.



What you see is not just a mountain but actually a former coral reef. No wonder that the ancients venerated the mountains as emblems of Divinity, so integrated they are with everything natural, like cloud formation and rain.

But also beyond what they could understand back then: like geology and paleo-ecology.

This is what María Isabel Millán has discovered in this iconic Basque mountain: that the coral reef on top of it shows sings of sudden collapse at the OAE1a event because of acidification caused by excess of CO2. Just as is happening today.

More at Science Daily.

4 comments:

manju said...

No wonder that the ancients venerated the mountains as emblems of Divinity

We can celebrate our ancestors ignorance as an innocence fun. However, it depresses to see some modern communities still living in that ignorance and other enlightened people celebrating them as living ancients.

Maju said...

For me it's not just "innocence fun": those myths often hide more truth than the "ignorant modern" can see.

I mentioned the case of how mountains participate in meteorology and the ancient Basque legend clearly says that when the two gods (female and male) meet at the local "holy mountain" (varies by district) storms are born. Seemingly the celebrated this perpetual creation at their weekly (?) holy night, which is obscurely known to us as the witches' sabbat or akelarre. It survived the Dark Ages but not the "illustrated" Inquisition of Modernity.

I think we should pay more attention to the hidden truths in the surviving wisdom of the ancients. The fact that hunter-gatherers work just a few hours per day (on average) is clear sign that they are much wiser than us... even if less knowledgeable of some other things such as nuclear weapons, engineering or even some aspects of medicine.

Their knowledge is still valid, not necesarily better but not worse either. It's a complementary point of view for those who can see through their eyes a little bit.

tavatea said...

Beautiful pic. Did u shoot it. This blog also posts nice pics http://txikilike.blogspot.com/

Hunter Gatherers work less but their population levels are less too and mortality rates high and life expectancy low.

But I agree with respecting the traditional wisdom part.

Maju said...

"Did u shoot it".

No. I took it from the source.