Wednesday, March 26, 2008

"Nishtanu Hateva’im..."
[Update here]

"BIU’s Prof. Mordechai Kislev’s discovery [p.12] that figs found at Jericho are the first cultivated crop is among the top six stories...Dated at 11,400 years old, the figs are much smaller than modern ones...people who lived over 2,000 years ago ate the same kinds of olives we eat today. “We found that the olive pit has traits that allow us to characterize the species of the tree on which it grew, even after thousands of years” said Prof. Kislev. “We found two kinds of olives that people from the Massada period used to eat which are still very common in Israel today and haven’t changed for thousands of years.”

So much for overzealous application of the principle Nishtanu Hateva'im ("nature has changed"). Of course, it would be quite reasonable to suggest that differences between flora and fauna we observe today and those we read of from the past, are really matters of demographics -"which breeds with what traits" predominated (were "the average" encountered), then versus now. Noteworthy also is the age of this find; this is thousands of years before Biblical proposals for the advent of "Souled Man", who produce the hallmarks of 'civilization' - developed domestication, advanced ceramics, and architecture (of course, non-authorities in these fields are happy to quibble about what is meant by an 'advance'...). ALL of these have also been dated well before R. Weisz's proposed "great leap forward"; on average, 8-10,000 years old - with less 'advanced' examples reaching much further back in time. Page 18 of the same issue of BIU Today gives some additional research by Prof. Kislev and associates suggesting that this ancient agriculture was a matter of extensive trial and error - not 'quantum leaps' of development. Elsewhere I have proposed that some of what we find of great antiquity may indeed be anachronistic - as in artifacts from another time entirely - before our clocks even began keeping time. Be they artifacts or organisms or technologies (or even knowledge), these would be in some sense remnants of the worlds preceding ours. Each ensuing world being, in a manner recycled from the previous catastrophic 'rebooting'. We are forever finding indications of Homo Sapiens Sapiens being really old, finding "prehistoric species" in fishing nets, the famed "hobbits", etc., I don't know that it's completely insane to suggest that we actually are looking past our official "beginnings", peering into previous worlds', previous civilizations endings. Might be some similar allusions among other posts here.


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