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4. Threads of History

4.0.1. The Myth of the Machine: The 5000-Year History of the great Empires -
The Eternal Struggle of Power Structures and Symbolization Systems


Mumford tells in "The Myth of the Machine" the grand narrative of the concrescence of humanity into the mega-machine of statehood. This grand theatre began quite exactly at that fateful date which is marked as the beginning of the Kali Yuga in Indian mythology at -3120. This is when the great empires on this planet started to arise. There is no need to recount the 800 pages of Mumford's great work, nor of the other cultural historians, Gibbon, Toynbee, and Spengler. Onle a few aspects will be listed here from the symbolization side.

The history of civilizations displays an almost eternal struggle of the reservation and preservation of symbolization systems in the hands of power-structure preservers against other pressures of society, whose widely diverse proponents could be summed with a common denominator: those who want to have their share of the business. The old proverb "Knowledge is Power " (Francis Bacon) is almost true - if this is read as the knowledge of the ones who wield the power. The knowledge of writing was the prime key to this power. When the first civilizations formed in the Middle East around -4000 to -3000, it was the control of script and numbering for bookkeeping by the priestly castes and the control of metalworking that allowed the first states to rise. Metal weapon armies kept the subjects (and the outsiders) in check, and ensured that the taxes were paid, which the priests had set thanks to their bookkeeping skills. Priesthoods and the aristocracy formed an entente cordiale that lasted about 5000 years, pretty much up to the time of the european moderne. His-story writing began when he, the all-powerful ruler and sovereign, ordered his scribes to commit to writing the stories which he deemed fit to preserve for posterity. Out of his ideas of his-story, arose history. Of course this is the feminist position, and because it is feminist, it has to be ridiculous. And we know better: history is derived from Latin: historia .

Military strategy , ballistics , diplomacy , agriculture , taxation , and criminal law are bound up in their history and their structure with the evolution of writing. The origin of writing was associated in the most diverse cultures with the distribution of political power and the structure of the family, a process that was very complex but also very orderly. The possibility of capitalization and the political-administrative organizations was always going through the hands of the scribes. Wars were possible because technology and administration were able to cooperate. Writing was always more and the same time something else than mere communication medium. Power and efficiency of rulership was only thinkable through the "symbolic force" of writing. Monetary and pre-monetary economy is bound up with writing.
DERRIDA74, 168

This successful cooperation was outwardly abolished by events like the french revolution of 1789, the US constitution, and the demise of aristocracy after 1918. But that does not need to confuse us. Old successful recipes are never changed, even if some of the ingredients may change. The name and the form of the ruling elites may have undergone some modification in the millennia, but the methods will change less, if they change at all. The role of the aristocracy has been taken over by financial elites, and the priesthood diversified into bureaucracy and scientific establishment.

4.0.2. The successful cooperation between rulers and priesthoods
In Egypt and Mesopotamia, there was about 3000 years of successful cooperation between rulers and priesthoods, thanks to the control of the secrets of script and number by the ruling power elites [86]. Mesopotamia was the scene of an almost incessant come-and-go of local ruling class. What apparently never changed was the priesthood structure that preserved the essential skills of mathematics and writing. Cuneiform writing was quickly adopted from encoding the indogermanic Sumerian to the semitic Akkadian language. Once that was accomplished, there was no problem accomodating to the special wishes of Babylonian, Assyrian, and Persian rulers, who came and went through the mesopotamian revolving door of power.

Only when Alexander entered the scene, did a few things change, but overall, not so much. His political genius transformed the by then age-old know-how of rulership into the recipe of bureaucratic administration which was soon after to become the Imperium Romanum. He had married not only his officers to persian princesses, which was the outward gesture, but also the persian administrative system to the greek makedonian military and engineering structure, then he added the egyptian legacy, and he welded it all into one very short lived empire that fell immediately to pieces after his death. But even though the political rulership divided up, all resulting parts kept the organizational structures. And Alexandria became the focal place of the resulting developments. It was the intellectual and commercial center of the ancient world. Its importance diminished only gradually after the roman conquest. Here convenced all caravans, all Silk Road routes, and all ship lines that connected the hellenistic, and then the Roman Empire to China and India [87] . Alexandria was the hub of the ancient world. Here the hellenistic structure of administration and scholarship was created that served as model for all subsequent civilizations of Western Eurasia, and after the european conquest, also America. The Library of Alexandria was the visible symbol of the ancient knowledge. It was burned, or deteriorated, but the thought structure of hellenistic thinking survived all the torrents of time. First, the Alexandrian know-how was transferred to Rome. The Romans married their superior military and engineering know-how with the eastern administration system and formed the Imperium Romanum. That again was transformed into the organization system of the Roman Catholic Church, and later, the european national states. The Islamic Empires did their own adaptation and transformation of ancient knowledge, and also transferred that to Europe.

4.0.3. The case of Egypt
In Egypt, the situation had been a little different from Mesopotamia. Before the Alexander empire and the Roman takeover, there were no lasting conquests from outside, except the a short Hyksos invasion, and some Assyrian domination. The stability of pharaonic society structure is some kind of a marvel in itself (see the next chapter). But the drawbacks of stability became apparent after Egypt was subdued by the makedonian invaders. Egypt lost her writing system and adopted the greek alphabet. The societal structure of Egypt was so fossilized and the mentality of the population so engrained with the old structures, that Egypt became the helpless pawn of foreign powerplay for the next 2000 years to come. Spengler aptly described the resulting state of mind of the population as "fellahin consciousness" (SPENGLER23 ). See: ->: SONG_SYNAISTHESIS, p. 406.

4.0.4. The rise of Alpha-Beta
The priestly control of writing was broken by the Phoenician traders. They succeeded creating a much more practical writing system: the Aleph-Bayt system. As a trader nation, the Phoenicians', scales of economy forbade the laborious many year-long training of scribes, and so their aleph bayt system was invented through sheer economic necessity. It is today not so sure any more whether the Phoenicians had created that system alone, or whether there were strong influences from Crete and the older Linear-B writing system [88]. Around -800, the Greeks had adopted the Aleph-Bayt to their Alpha-Beta system. They also created their own native steel and naval technology, together with elaborate mechanics, and very powerful military tactics, the hoplite system. This was the mixture which allowed them to resist the Persian onslaught, and a little later, under the makedon Alexander, defeat the Persians themselves. It is no coincidence that the Greeks, who "technology-shared" the Aleph-Bayt system from the Poenicians, also "economy-shared" their profitable trading grounds. The Phoenicians were eradicated in the process. First, the sacking and eradication of the last phoenician stronghold on the Levant, Tyre, by Alexander the Great. The whole phoenician culture was wiped off the face of this planet when the Romans defeated Carthage in the third punic war, eradicating that city as thouroughly as no place had been eradicated before, setting the record of human destructive action which was only broken in 1945 with Dresden, Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The ground on which it once stood was ploughed over and salt was thrown in the furrows to insure that nothing would ever grow thereafter in this place.

4.0.5. The library of Alexandria
The writing system, Aleph-Bayt alias Alphabet, formed the core of learning in antiquity. Its intellectural center was Alexandria, with the famous library as epicenter, with hundreds of thousand script rolls, the collected wisdom of antiquity. This knowledge center was slowly deteriorating. The first conquest by Caesar was the occasion for the first literary bonfire. It was either a minor charge of 10.000 script rolls ready for shipment in the Alexandria harbor, or part or whole of the library proper (CANFORA-BIB ). Let us assume that it was only a minor loss. When Rome became the political center of the antique world, Alexandria was on the decline, any which way. In the later days of the roman empire, Alexandria was the scene for a lot of rioting, between and among christian factions, and their opponents. Since history writing consisted at that time to an essential part in burning those books containing accounts which didn't fit the ideas of his-story of the party that took the power, a lot of books had to be burned before we finally got to the correct version of his-story that we are now having the privilege to learn in our his-story books.

4.0.6. The murder of Hypatia
We know for sure of the murder of Hypatia in 415. And this was a fundamentalist terror coup perpetrated by christians in a factional war between Cyrill, the archbishop of Alexandria, and Orestes, the prefect of Alexandria. Of course, it was a political power struggle. Hypatia was a friend of Orestes, and she happened to be a symbol figure. Being the most famous of the last surviving proponents of the antique philosophers' wisdom, and to add insult to injury for the christians, she was a woman. So she was the ideal candidate for ritual sacrifice. She was ambushed one night, stripped nude, dragged into the Alexandria Cathedral, her body torn to pieces, and the pieces displayed to the crowds of Alexandria, and then publicly burnt. All in all, a typical case of ritual murder right out of the cookbook of mythological blood sacrifices. So much is historically verified. Whether that time also saw the complete and final destruction of the collected wisdom of antiquity in the Alexandria Library is uncertain. There is a fairly credible account that at least a part of the Library was housed in the Serapeion [89], which went up in smoke when the christian mob burned it in 390. Be that as it may, there were many other literary bonfires staged throughout the rotting corpse of the once Roman Empire by all sorts of Vandals, marauders, intruders, plunderers and religious fundamentalists. Not much was left when a new center of learning under christian heading began on Monte Cassino in 529.

4.0.7. Script and the Law
The law is a double-edged sword. It serves to keep order among the citizens of equal status, and it ensures that "those who are more equal than the others" (George Orwell, Animal Farm), keep their enviable status. The power elites soon recognized that brute force was not the way to stay in power for long, and so law was invented. The code of Hammurabi is perhaps the oldest known law document committed to writing. The codification of law was an eternal side-show of the civilizational process. In Europe, the law means in most cases: Roman Law. And this was especially geared toward the ones who had the power. (SPENGLER23, 624-655). Roman Law: Human life as chattel

The general principle of the roman law of property, at its inception, gave the legal owner of a family (the pater familiae) the absolute right to use and abuse all the members of the family, his wife, his children, his slaves, his animals, and his other property. No one could stop him from even killing his children, the slaves, and wasting the land. And this is how the romans dealt with all their posessions. The province governors sucked the blood out of their dominions until they were bled white. The forests were razed until nothing but karst remained in the whole mediterranean. The Roman Empire has already in antiquity done its share of work towards the destruction of the mediterranean ecosystem (WEEBER90 ). The wildlife of the whole northern part of the continent of Africa was slaughtered in the circuses by the hundreds of thousands, never to mention those other hundreds of thousand that were just wasted in the process of capture, and transport, or in filthy conditions and malnutrition in the cellars while waiting to be butchered in front of the multitudes. What do you think happens when you catch about 70 to 80 % of all hunting animals in a huge area for centuries? Surely the herds of grazing animals will explode, leading to overgrazing, and destruction of the soil. That the sahara is a desert now, instead of rich cornfields and pasture, is attributable to roman ecodestruction of the southern savanna areas where the lions for the circuses came from. The only thing that was wrong with the collapse of the Roman Empire is that it came about 500 years too late! Even though the absolute property right of the Romans has been somewhat limited in the development of western civilization, it still holds full sway to extremely detrimental effects in all other sectors: The right to use and abuse of land owners, wasting the soil, and the life forms, on his land for all the future. The terrible heritage of the Roman Empire is still with us, alive, screaming and kicking! (See also NEIRYNCK-ING, 149-158 ).

The ruling class consisted exclusively of big land-owners, military officers, lawyers, and public administrators, whereas the manual labor was left to the slaves. The administrative rule was executed by people who had neither a precise idea of the material resources of the Empire, nor of the ways and means how to attain them, nor how they could possibly be cultivated: They knew nothing but the rule of force by military and juridical means. Even more than the Greeks, the Romans have isolated themselves in the pattern of the two cultures: one verbal, juridical, philosophical, and aristocratic, and the other material, technical, and scientific relegated to those who had to obey orders. The whole latin world is still tied up in this cultural schizophrenia, accentuating why the industrial revolution was more successful in the countries of northern Europe... If we were to adopt an aphorism of Bernhard Shaw on the USA to the roman case, we could subsume the fate of Rome like this: An empire that directly made the step from barbarianism to decadence, without ever having known civilization...

(NEIRYNCK-ING, 158 ) Noxious laws and legal power structures

The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.
Shakespeare, Henry VI

Shakespeare had keenly observed this noxious tendency of legal power structures, and proposed a working solution for it, although with little chance for execution. All the power systems in the western world are permeated, if not to say perverted, by the oligarchy of law-makers and law-interpreters, lawyers, judges, and bureaucrats. The problematic extends into all the power structures that rest on the law systems that in most western countries are derived from Roman law. The emphasis on fixation of legal domains translates into an emphasis on clearly delimited and permanent boundaries, material possession and goods, and concomitant power struggles for their domination. Laws and regulations get drawn up in incredible volume, as the current EU bureaucracy shows so clearly, and their growth is hardly ever checked, and practically never is it possible to repeal unnecessary or noxious laws. The law situation in Germany is a particularly good example for this, but the problem is shared by all modern civilizations [90]. The most visible examples of obnoxious laws are traffic signs which may be useful in some conditions of heavy traffic, but are obnoxious as they continue to enforce their law character even when they are completely useless: traffic lights that go on blinking at midnight, when there are no cars on the road. Far from regulating traffic, these superfluous laws and regulations are everywhere amply being utilized to fill the coffers of local governments: the fines for traffic violations are increased regularly year by year, and as everyone knows, the police watch posts are not stationed in places where there is a danger spot but where there is most traffic coming by that can be cashed in on. At another age, the time honored custom of road-robbery had set a precedence for the current traffic police. While this may be just another feature of a disintegrating social system that takes money where it can get it, the bitter side effect is that thousands of people per year in Germany alone are criminalized and lose their jobs because they lose their driver's license and are deprived of the vital transportation means of driving a car. This noxious development arose because the German Law has permanently fixed the criminalization level to a certain sum of penalty paid, that was established 10 or 20 years ago. Meanwhile penalties have risen about 10-fold, so quite soon, almost everyone will get criminalized for the smallest traffic offense and looses their driver's license.

The great danger for society of noxious laws is that they have a perverse tendency of immediately creating niches for loophole exploiters who profit from them, and then gain in the process of the lawful, but unfair exploitation, enough political power to subvert the legal system. As soon as there is a law that creates an imbalance in conditions and creates an unfair chance, there will be those lawyers who exploit the loophole for their clients, and a lobby paid from the profits which will prevent any change of the law. In time, this subverts the whole legal system of a society. Even such a disastrous law as the U.S. prohibition amendment could not be changed for a long time because the gangster syndicates poured lavish amounts of money into the funds of pro-prohibition circles. A similar deadlock seems to happen today with any attempts at the reform of drug legislation: The organized crime profits most from the current state, and if drugs were legalized, the organized crime would lose their business. So there are enormous amounts of black money funds poured into ultra-conservative hardliner drug programs. And it is quite consequential that of course no such connection would ever reach public attention.

4.0.8. The chinese case
The chinese case shows a major difference. Here we have the ideographic chinese script system which allowed a state to form that had about ten times the size of Egypt. There were many different language (or dialect) groups in the territory of ancient China. Had the earliest Chinese emperors attempted to introduce a phonetic script as medium of central administration, as was the case in Egypt and Mesopotamia, that would have meant the (attempted) domination of people of one language group. Domination by one language group means opposition by all the others, and resulting war and secession. In the age before transportation machines, all military action was dependent on the speed of soldiers on foot. Therefore, the dominion of one ruler could extend only as far as he could dispatch his soldiers who were usually from the same culture group as the ruling class. But because chinese writing is language-independent, this opposition was avoided. The administrative structure of the chinese empire was open to all language groups, but connected to the central structure via the common script system. Since the high court script was much more complicated than the character sets used for mundane purposes like commerce, there was a strong security measure. The learning of the reserved signs was controlled by central authority. That allowed the formation of a continental empire. Western eurasia was never able to do that, continuously being split up in nation states of one specific language. The dispersion of one language dominion is determined by travel and communication limits. Therefore european language groups (nation states) before the advent of railways had territories of about 500-800 km diameter. Only when the continent of America was conquered by western eurasian settlers [91], could a single-language group form a continental empire: The USA.

4.0.9. The european sequels
The medieval church was successful controlling script and the book-writing process in Christendom for one thousand years until it lost the grip over their little sheep when the printing press rendered the stake and the torture-rack useless: heretics could distribute printed books faster than the inquisitors could burn them [92].

Closer to modern times, it was the Empire of IBM that appeared unshakeable for about 20 years, between 1960 and 1980, when the mainframe range of /360-/370 computers dominated the development. Ironically, IBM itself set the fuse of self-destruction when they introduced a super-successful new type of computer: The IBM PC. (This outcome was predicted in all detail in the article BIB-AG:IBM-PC.TXT as early as 1984, before anyone really knew what was happening.)
4.0.10. Prophesies of a Cyber-Age thousand year reich
We don't need to stop at the present. The prophet of Cyber-Age, William Gibson, supplies us with terrifying and extremely accurate visions of a technologically brain-dominated millennium of a cyber-medieval humanity with brain implants and electronic dreams in his "Neuromancer" series. The fact that it is science fiction should in no way lure us into thinking that it may not become grim reality before we turn around. This is the fate humanity is in for when we construct computers that are more intelligent than we are, or that we cannot control any more.

The struggle goes on and it will continue. Today humanity is at the brink of eco-disaster and malthusian self-extinction. There is a good chance that we succeed in presenting a wasted planet earth to our rat- and cockroach- descendants to build a new civilization upon. We don't know if we will make it, and surely, a "Neuromancer" future is not worth devoting the best energies of present science and intelligence to this end. Technology by itself will not bring us a better future. Nor will better thinking methods alone help us any further. If we are to make it, we will have to go further on, further back, and deeper down, than any generation of humanity before.
4.0.11. The Lemming story - Humanity and the Malthus laws
"His Story" would not be complete without at least trying to list some of the "neglectable side effects" of the tale of His Domination: The gruesome tale of human mass destruction. Either by human action against humans, or by ecological lashback phenomena. The greatest massacres of world history

Here in tabular order listed by body count. The number of victims can of course not be given with historical accurateness for the earlier events. The list is an excerpt from WER 56, Fall 87, p.74-75.

Number Date Victims Cause, Place
59.000.000 1937-45 Humans 2nd world war, grand total
40.000.000 1210-40 Chinese Mongolian invasion, north China
40.000.000 1850-64 Chinese Taiping Rebellion, China [93]
30.000.000 1930-53 UDSSR-people Stalin-regime, Gulag, Ukrainian Famine
15.000.000 1949-64 Chinese Maoist regime in China
15.000.000 1941-45 Russian Hitler-campain in Russia. Civilians
15.000.000 1914-18 Europeans 1st world war
12.000.000 1400-1880 Africans Slave trade with Amerika
10.000.000 1937-45 Chinese Japanese invasion of China
10.000.000 1220-60 Humans Mongolian conquest of Russia, Middle East
6.000.000 1939-45 Jews Holocaust
6.000.000 1618-48 Europeans 30 year war, mostly German and Bohemian
5.000.000 1492-1600 Amerind Spanish conquest of Southamerica, Mexico [94]
5.000.000 1640-44 Chinese, Manchu Manchu conquest
5.000.000 1250-80 Chinese Mongolian conquest, south China
5.000.000 1945-49 Chinese Chinese civil war
5.000.000 1370-1405 Asia Timurlan conquests
3.500.000 1939-45 Polish Nazi-conquest and slave labor
3.500.000 1789-1815 European French revolution, Napoleon wars
3.000.000 1941-45 Russ. Soldiers Nazi-POW camps
3.000.000 1096-1400 Humans Crusades
3.000.000 1945-87 Humans Indochina war
2.500.000 1950-53 Corean Corea war
2.500.000 1917-23 Russian Russian revolution
2.000.000 1350-1750 Women Witch persecution
2.000.000 ????-1850 Women Suttee, ritual incineration of the widow
2.000.000 1839-1911 Africans Colonialisation of Africa
2.000.000 1750-1850 Indians British conquest of India
2.000.000 1944-46 Germans Removal of Germans from eastern settlements [95]
2.000.000 1300-1750 European Inquisition
2.000.000 1400-1520 Mex. Indians Ritual sacrifice of Aztecs and other cultures

unknown number of victims, more than 100.000 up to several million:
-3200 The Battle of Kurukshetra (Mahabharata)
-1200-800 Assyrian conquests and exterminations
-1200- +400 antique slave trade
-300-200 Punic wars
-100-0 Roman conquest of Gallia, Britannia
600-1100 Islamic conquest Africa, Asia Minor, Persia
1100-1200 Islamic conquest India

He who doesn't write world history as criminal history is an accomplice.
BIB:DESCHNER-KRIMI, p. 11 Lies, damn lies, statistics

There is an old adage about lying: "Lies, damn lies, statistics". [96] What do these death toll statistics mean at all? What we are looking at, is a small section of the human suffering through the ages worked out statistically. It is a base figure of the human suffering caused by human intra-species aggression. How does this compare to other forms of suffering? For example the death toll of disease and malnutrition. If we consider the life-expectancy of those eras, the death toll numbers of human intra-species aggression are nothing compared to the loss of life through "natural" causes like disease and malnutrition. But then we have to realize that the "natural" loss of life was mainly caused by civilization problems: overpopulation, unspeakable sanitary conditions. These must be called ecological lashback phenomena because they are a direct Malthusian consequence of overstressing the ecological balance of the local population area. Was there more or less suffering through death by slow wasting disease? Did the ancient Egyptians, who were on the whole a not-too-belligerent nation over 3000 years, suffer less than the Mesopotamians who saw a violent upturn of the ruler class about every 400 years? The Egyptians possibly lost more lives due to parasites and secondary diseases caused by tooth decay than the Mesopotamians lost to warring. Even if we take the heroic deeds of the Assyrians into our account, who impaled the population of whole cities.

So lets go about the lies in these statistics:

1) The first lie would be that it is impossible to get any reliable data for european events before 1700, and for the rest of the world before 1900.
2) The second lie would be that the figures mean nothing if they don't indicate the percentage of the population killed.
3) Third, it makes a lot of difference if there was selective killing. A common practice of conquerors was the selective extermination of certain groups of the population which had a specific influence on the whole body. The roman extermination of Druids in Gallia is one good case. This is called "intellectual beheading " in the language of the termination trade [97]. On the "intellectual beheading" of a population

This practice has the doubly beneficial effect for the conquerors of leaving a more or less mindless and blinded mass of human chattel that were just suitable for the kinds of slave labor their conquerors had in store for them.

The muslim conquest of India gives another good case of this with the extermination of all the buddhist monks in the monasteries. It is hard to estimate how much of the intellectual potential of India had been concentrated in the monasteries, and how that corresponds to the remaining population. Between the time of the Buddha -500, the Alexander invasion -300, and around +600, the time of Shankara, India was probably the culturally most advanced place on this planet. (Basham: The Wonder that was India). How that long decline was fabricated would be a very interesting chapter of world history. The Muslims surely did their thing in this, and the British gave Indian culture the death blow when they closed the Vedic Brahmin Sanskrit schools. See: ->: BRAHMIN_SCHOOL, p. 402

Most radical, and most successful, were the Spaniards in South America. They succeeded in instituting a cultural beheading that continues until today. The Indians were robbed of all vestiges of their cultural identity, their cultural soul. The modern post-colonial states on the Indian territory are following suit. When the Paraguay Jesuites attempted to allow the Indians to recover a bit of their culture, they were terminated themselves. The cultural desasters of Europe

We can list three major cultural desasters that befell Europe after 900 and changed the course of its history:

1) The Bubonic Plague [98] or Black Death which wiped out 1/3 to 1/2 of the population of all Europe from 1300 to 1350 with several recurrences in the following centuries. There was probably the same percentage of victims in the near and far east where the plague had come from, making it one of the largest desasters of humanity ever. There are no figures available from extra-european areas. Some reports from India had stated that the countryside there was as much, or more devastated as in Europe.

There have been many investigations on the negative influence of the Plague on the structure of the european cultural fabric. One unanimous observation seems to be that the Plague corrupted the core of christian european society. It acted as a negative selector because it killed those first who were by their nature the most kindred and social persons. The intellectual potential of the population was severely drained when the inhabitants of many monasteries died to the last monk. The concentration of a certain genetic potential of the population in mass communities like monasteries proved to be an extremely vulnerable spot of human society of that time. Monasteries were the places of learning. They were about the only place where the second-born sons who had no inheritance to make could turn to "to make a career" as we would today call it. Other vital sectors that were severly hit were the lower grade priests who were called to the dying and couldn't refuse, who died in exceptional proportion. Just like all people who were moved by their social conscience to assist the victims. Those who were hard hearted enough to think of themselves first survived, and with them their attitudes toward life. It is of no coincidence that the higher echelons of the church suffered very few losses. Here the basic christian ideal of compassion seems to have received a lethal blow from which it never recovered. One writer (ZINN89) believes that this breakdown of basic human consideration was the reason why it was Europe and not China who resorted to the large-scale adaptation of fire-arms thereby setting the fuse to an ever-increasing escalation of warfare to ever higher potentials of lethality with the inevitable logical outcome of the atomic bomb.

2) The 30 year war of 1618-1648.
It left one third of the german population dead, its cities in ruin, its villages and countryside depopulated and the once mighty Holy Roman Empire as a patchwork of bickering statelets that were pawns at the hands of the great Roi Soleil Louis XIV . The idea of the Holy Roman Empire (HRE) was of course entirely eradicated as consequence of 3). The historical loss to european history was that the HRE was a supranational body. The Emperor never meddled in the local cultural and language bound national affairs of his subjects. All the nation states, France and England going first, were to the contrary very eager suppressing all the local ethnic traditions on their territories. Today, the unification of Europe has to deal with the great problem of these nation based political structures. The principle of subsidiarity has been invented to recover something of what had been common political principle in the HRE. The next historical problem was that Germany remained a power vacuum for 200 years among fully-grown national states all around it. This led to the belated desastrous german drive to assert national souvereign statehood under Prussian rule, to assume the role of continental power player, and leading directly into the next desaster.

3) The first and second world war 1914-1945. These two wars should be seen as one. The second was the direct result of the non-achievement of peace when the first came to a cease-fire. The fire flared up as soon as Germany had regained enough economic power to arm up again. Genetic culture-forming: Malthus meets Mendel

Human history is the story of all those who survived. What about those who didn't survive to tell their story? What about those who died before they could reproduce, the losers who are not in our ancestral bloodline, whose genes were lost to the evolution of humanity? Who were they? What was their genetic potential, that humanity has shed, discarded, or lost? Could we discover any influences of genetic culling in the mortality rates of humanity? The Darwinian statement of "the survival of the fittest" is a thinly disguised tautology since "surviving" just defines what is meant by "being the fittest". The specific cultural environment presented in cultured and civilized humanity is very different from the environment of a forest-dwelling neolithic tribe. The honorable license to slash and trash

There is a considerable amount of selective breeding that had been going on in certain forms of the termination trade.

Have you ever wondered about that seemingly impenetrable facade mask of courtesy and reservation the japanese people display when meeting someone they don't know? This is not just a cultural attitude that they have been trained to. This is a genetic trait the Japanese have acquired in a few millennia of selective culling. The story goes about like this: In the good old times of the heroic Samurai age, those warriors were given a kind of "007" license that probably was unique in all of human history. They had the "honorable license to slash and trash" everyone (of the low caste people of course) whom they met in the streets who didn't seem to fit their idea of a perfect state subject of the japanese society. And the Samurais were famous for their swordsmanship [99], and they just loved to practice their art. So, a certain genetic trait present in most other races on this planet to show at least a little bit of civil disobedience had been carefully manicured away from the japanese racial body. Have you ever seen how a bonzai is made? I guess you will get the idea.

Not that we might not find similar cases closer to home: The case of the Witch Hunt is one of them. It has been speculated by feminist researchers that the witch extermination campaign of Europe had eugenic backdrops. For example the extermination of all signs of psychic powers. It would of course have helped the rise of rationalism and the enlightenment when one could get rid of all those who didn't believe in rationality [100]. Another speculation was that the witches knew too much about birth control methods, and since the rulers had an ever increasing need for workers in the fields and in the mines as well as for soldiers and sailors, some gentle pressure had to be exerted on the european population to produce enough fodder for the cannons. Needless to say that this is all senseless unhis-storic nonsense and unscientific speculation. Death rates and cultural selection

Usually it was the children that died by a margin of maybe 50 %. Of course, disease was the main cause of child death. (And childbirth the main cause of women death between age 16 and 36). Very often, child death was the "poor man's method of family planning". Many children died as consequence of neglect. Gender differences often made for higher mortality. Often "superfluous" girls were killed. The analysis of church and parrish registers can yield economic and societal connections of survival ratios. It will be useless to determine whether there were any psychological traits, that had higher mortality than others. Did children die more often who liked to climb in the trees? Most certainly. Did children die more often who liked to play with fire? Most certainly. And their families together with them. In their fairy tales, the Grimm brothers have collected a lot of those stories how children came to death.

The next question is: Who were the ones who reached the procreative age and were not allowed to breed? European medieval society had strong marriage controls imposed on people. The ability to earn the money to feed the family had to be proved. The guild system showed a peculiar age shift pattern of 40-year old crafts masters marrying 16 year old girls, because their wives had died, and when the masters died, the only chance of the 25-year old apprentices to get the rare license to set up shop as a master was to marry the now 40-year old widow of the old master. That surely created interesting social interaction patterns in urban medieval european societies. The late born sons had not many roads to a career. They could join the clergy, become monks, or join the military to fight in one of the countless wars that were constantly going on somewhere in Europe. Or they became sailors in the rising maritime expansion of Europe. The ones who were more introvert of course joined the clergy, the bolder ones were bound to the military. The ones who stayed at home and bred were the older sons, those that managed to marry (not a princess but) a craftsmaster's widow, and those who were able to get a schooling, become merchants, lawyers, doctors, etc. These were the crafty, practical, down-to-earth types, who didn't mind marrying a woman not for her beauty but for the dowry or the shop, who were eager to please their superiors, and who didn't mind sitting or standing in dark and cold, uncomfortable, confined and smelly places, where the merchants had their wares and their bookkeeping, the lawyers did their records...

This is about the sons. About the girls, much less is known. Where did those women go who couldn't marry? The veil was the only alternative they had. There is this old adage that the number of unmarried spinsters directly influences the wealth of the country because spinsters love cats, and cats love to eat mice, and when there are lots of cats, they eat many mice, and therefore the farmers are getting richer harvests...
4.0.12. The New History
Because of the abovementioned tendential bias of history, most of what fills the history books are the stories of the great hierarchic civilizations. It is safe to say that writing and hierarchical civilization have biased our outlook of humanity's past to an extent, of, maybe, 95 %. Only now, with technological methods of history research, have other ways of deciphering the past been found that will, in due course, lead to a re-write of our entire history. This will take time, and if humanity will be around 100 years from now, we will then become aware of the filtering effect from the archeological field and lab research to the official picture. For those who know where to look, the new history is already available. Spengler was one of the first to notice the new pattern (SPENGLER66 ). James Mellaart made a start when he discovered the matristic [101] culture of Catal Hüyük in Anatolia, that is our oldest cultural ancestor. This culture had no hierarchy, and no writing, and still it was very highly evolved (MELLAART , ILL:H ). What is most remarkable about this culture, is the fact that the ancient wall paintings of Catal Hüyük of -8000 are still to be found on the kilims woven by the native women of the area. An unbroken tradition of 10,000 years, and no-one knew about it. Sure to say, that official history will be the last to notice. Mariam Gimbutas has been similarly successful uncovering an also matristic archaic substrate of european civilization in the Vinca culture, in the Balkan area of -5000 (GIMBUTAS , HAARMANN , ILL:W-78 ). Also, recent research from Mesopotamia indicates that hierarchical structures were not there from the beginning. Probably only when metal weapons became available, did this pattern come to full swing. When more material on the ancient european developments will become available, we will probably see an entirely different version of what formed the dynamics of culture. It may not have been the ancient hierarchical civilizations that were most important, but the networking people: Seafarers and caravan traders. Hierarchy versus network: an archaic field of tension

The origin of european writing, the alphabet has conventionally been traced to either a migration of egyptian or mesopotamian patterns towards Phoenicia , the formation of the Aleph-Bayt there, and its adaptation by the greeks. But it could as well have happened the other way around, according to the theory proposed by Haarmann . Crete was, directly, or indirectly, the heir of the Vinca culture. This culture had writing patterns that conventional historians call purely ornamental. It is probably just an "interesting coincidence" that these symbols re-appear almost identical in the cretan linear A script of -2000, and this was also used in the minoan palace administration to -1500 (HAARMANN-SCHRIFT, 77-87). Also, purely "coincidental" is the identity with the nordic rune symbols dating about 2000 years later [102]: from AD 200. The similarity of these scripts with phoenician aleph-bayt script might as well indicate that it was the Phoenicia ns who borrowed from the Creta ns.

Another, hardly known factor in this story is the existence of the proto-greek Pelasgian people. There is a beautiful painting preserved over the millennia from the great Thera eruption -1400, buried under hundreds of meters of volcanic ash. It shows beautifully painted ships, houses, and ornaments of these ancient people (FRIEDRICH94 , and ILL: THE).

While land-based civilizations leave remains of buildings, fireplaces, and waste heaps, ships don't leave such traces in the sea. Deep sea navigation is probably older than official history can admit. Because there are no traces visible, and no written records, there is very little evidence or proof. So much to be said on this is informed speculation. The most tangible evidence of navigation are tuna fish remains in neolithical garbage heaps. Tuna fish can only be caught in the open sea, and for this people must have had seaworthy ships. A lot of evidence has been collected in HERRMANN52 . Recently, the work Eberhard Zangger has helped to reinterpret the history of bronze age navigation (ZANGGER-TROIA ). A unique piece of evidence are the well-preserved boats of Cheops , found near the Cheops pyramid . This is the only case in human history that a 2500-year old ship has been entirely preserved [103]. According to Thor Heyerdahl , these ships are, even if not of seaworthy construction, so similar to a Viking ship that the idea can at least be entertained that there had been visitors to egypt who came in sea-going boats that served as models for those ships. Some other myth even has it the the ancestors of the egyptian Pharaos were not locals, but came with these ships. This is of course speculation that cannot be validated. But somethimes it is necessary even to look out for speculation.

For millennia, the mediterranean basin has been the scene of a constant criss-crossing of ships. The Creta ns and Phoenicia ns were the oldest to make our history books. But that only means that we don't know what was before. That we have no evidence of anything before them means not that this is evidence that there was nothing before them. Phoenician and ancient Greek culture before Alexander had many things in common. They were organized in local groups, usually a city-state, and were not dominated by land-holding aristocracy but by an oligarchy of merchants, or other political coalitions. Their organization was a network, based much on their superior naval know-how. From the network era of Greece between -800 and -300 stems most of our western european cultural heritage. This was the time from Homer to Plato and Aristoteles . After Greece was subdued to the hierarchical hellenistic system of the Makedon Alexander , the greek creativity ebbed, and was only preserved and ordered and systematized for posterity by the Alexandrine scholars. When the Imperium Romanum took the rudder, even seafaring was under the control of the hierarchy. But soon after its demise, new networking seafaring cultures sprung up. Most notably the city republic of Venice which led its independent existence as a successful networking state after the model of Phoenicia and greek seafarers between 466 and 1797.

But the Mediterranean was not the only theater of intense trade. The northern routes were known to the Phoenicia ns, who came at least as far as Ireland . There is evidence that the north seas have been widely travelled already in the neolithic. In later times, we have the Viking who formed a quite lively trading/pirating network. The northern exploits of the Vikings are almost unknown, except maybe the exploits of Eric the Red 982, who founded the settlement of Greenland . The Viking Greenland adventure was only short-lived, because the climate became colder after 1300. In 1540, the last Greenland Viking was found dead by John Davis in 1586 (HERRMANN52 , 285, 289, and 255-320). (See also: Appendix I).

The America exploits are more speculative, but historical consensus grants them validity today. The rune stone dating from 1362 and found in Minnesota , though, is too much for historical consensus to bear (HERRMANN52 , 255-265). The Bjarni expedition to Vinland mentioned by Herrmann (HERRMANN52 , 327), dates to 985, that is the same time as the Greenland expedition. His followers were Leif Ericsson , and Thorfin Karlsefni (p. 328) who are better known. More on that matter in (HERRMANN52 , 321-418)

A later nordic trading network was the Hanse , who sailed mainly the baltic routes.

4.1. The tradition of the Ars memoriae

Art of Memory, Raimundus Lullus, Giulio Camillo, Giordano Bruno, Leibniz: Characteristica Universalis, Aby Warburg.

The issue of memory is a focus point in the discussion.

We must not be confused by contemporary mis-uses of the word memory for technological storage devices as they appear in computers: e.g. Random Access Memory RAM. Human memory is still an entirely different matter. This is just a good example how we can be totally mislead by wrong terminology.

4.1.1. The Ancient Art of Memory and Architectonics
The ancient Art of Memory was a highly prized and praised skill as Frances Yates has shown (YATES66 ). It is of no coincidence that the ancients used architectonic models for their artificial memory technology . For in the ancient architectonic lay the knowledge of the pythagorean system of proportion and harmonics that expressed the fundamentals (or the stoichea ) of the cosmopolitic universe of antiquity much better than did the linear text recordings which were auxiliary at best. It was for this reason, that everyone learning to apply the Art of Memory did so perambulating the halls and staircases of the temples and monuments. In these perambulations, the candidates learned unconsciously the intricate connections that had been incorporated into the construction of these buildings. These were the ratios between the measures of the human body and the cosmic proportions . This was another meaning of the uomo universale , or homo universalis . The human body containted all the cosmic proportions . When you studied the body, you studied the universe. The last one who seemed to have had some knowledge about this was Paracelsus . These ratios could be experienced fully by the kinesthetic sense and much better than through alphabetically framed analytical and mental exercises as has become the norm in our linear-text based age. Anything experienced and walked-through physically, with the kinesthetic sense, becomes an engram . It is memory matter that will not decay for life. (Everyone who has learned to ride a bicycle will attest to this. Totally unlike anything one has learned analytically and mentally only. This was, and still is, the secret of the Ancient Art of Memory . Since the alphabetically framed mind will be reluctant to even consider such an option, there is a good chance that it will be lost forever, even though it is mentioned here. It is hard to penetrate the fortified walls of 3000 years alphabetikolobos . (VITRUVIUS , DOCZY-GRENZ , 47-71, 122-146, SCHWALLER-TEMPLE ). See ->: BICYCLE_PARABLE, p. 93

4.1.2. The peripatetic school and the implantable Walkstation
Perhaps it is not just a coincidence that the school of Aristoteles was called the peripatetic school (=perambulate). Because even though he never mentions the principle, Aristoteles was a quite acute observer, and the fact that all the orators and lawyers composed their speeches perambulating in the halls and staircases of the temples and public buildings, might not have escaped him. Even without the more esoteric principles of cosmic harmony, it is undoubtedly a definite factor that helps learning, and thinking, when you keep the body in motion, breathe some fresh air, and see some beautiful vistas. It has to be remembered that ancient Athens was not the smoggy, filthy, overpopulated, hell-urbanized, moloch then that it is now. The air was good, and even if there were some filthy quarters, where the low-class people lived, the city fathers had seen to it that they were well removed from the living places of the upper classes. The pebble had to live in the harbor city. The public building programmes, starting with Perikles , had seen to it, that this place was one of the most breath-taking and stunning visual experiences that any place on the globe could provide. So, even if he doesn't mention it in his philosophy, Aristoteles might have known what he did, and why he did it. And it would serve our civilization exceedingly well, if we could just introduce this little thing in our education systems: That the first thing the children learn is not to sit still (which stifles them), but that they learn to learn while perambulating. Perhaps just this innocuous little detail would turn around the fates of western civilization to the better. Of course, a little technology that helps us do our word processing while walking might come in handy. If we have a Walkman , we can also afford a Walky-Symbolator . We are technically not too far away from the implantable Workstation , which we then call a Walkstation. (Gerald Maguire , ED-MEDIA95 , not included in the conference proceedings) .

[86] To be correct: In Egypt, there was alongside the hieroglyphic and hieratic scripts, also a cursive writing system, the demotic, for mundane use. But it is still safe to say that the schools where the writing arts were taught were under control of the priest/state hierarchy. And since the higher and more state-relevant matters were written in the "hiero" scripts, they could be kept in a smaller circle of control by the ruling elite.
[87] There were 250 ships sailing to India every year in the days of the Roman Empire. See also: (HERRMANN52, 151-194)
[88] If we follow Haarmann (HAARMANN-LANG, 230), we have still another perspective on the matter. He states "that writing skills must have been wide spread amont the Minoan population because there is no evidence that the society had a high-ranking social class of scribes which would have been the gurarantor of literacy. The absence of such a class in ancient Crete is indeed remarkable, since this is an important factor in other civilizations." Perhaps the history of european civilization will have to be rewritten sooner than we imagine. The Thera ash may yield any day surprising new finds on the nature of minoan and pelasgian cultures that don't fit the conventional pictures.
->: THERA, p. 164
[89]No one really knows whether there was more left over in another building, to be burned in 642 when the Arabs took the city. One record speaks of books being fed to the ovens of the alexandrine bath houses for three months. What a splendid opportunitiy to take a hot bath! Who destroyed the library had been another matter of hate propaganda between arabs and christians who did everything they could to denounce each other as the destructors of antique civilization.
[90] When the West German constitution was drawn up hurriedly after WWII, the political structure was based on some sort of parliamentary democracy that was soon taken over completely by a shadow-puppet playing ensemble of a practically self-governing body of lawyers and civil servants. BRD means: Beamten-Republik Deutschland.
[91]At the cost of eradicating those people who were living there originally. The american continent wasn't completely empty, even if Wild West novels sometimes pretend so.
[92] From: SOFT-ENCYC.
Gutenberg, Johann
Johann Gutenberg, b. c.1398, d. 1468, was a German goldsmith who is credited with the invention and development in Europe of PRINTING from movable type. His invention fulfilled the needs of the age for more and cheaper reading matter and foreshadowed the modern printing industry.
Gutenberg first experimented with printing about 1440 in Strasbourg, 160 km (100 mi) from his native Mainz. By 1450 he was back in Mainz, and his invention had been perfected to a point where it could be exploited commercially. To produce the large numbers of individual pieces of type that were needed for the composition of a BOOK, Gutenberg introduced the principle of replica-casting. Single letters were engraved in relief and then punched into slabs of brass to produce matrices from which replicas could be cast in molten metal. These were then combined to produce a flat printing surface, thus establishing the process of LETTERPRESS printing. The type was a rich decorative texture modeled on the Gothic handwriting of the period.
Gutenberg's second achievement lay in the development of an ink that would adhere to his metal type and that needed to be completely different in chemical composition from existing woodblock printing inks. Gutenberg also transformed the winepress of the time into a screw-and-lever press capable of printing pages of type. While setting up his commercial press between 1450 and 1452, he borrowed a sum of money from Johann FUST to enable him to produce his type and presses but was unable to repay the debt promptly. Fust foreclosed on the mortgage in 1455 and obtained possession of the type and presses, setting himself up as a printer with his son-in-law, Peter Schoffer. Gutenberg apparently abandoned printing altogether after 1465, possibly because of blindness. He died on Feb. 3, 1468, in comparative poverty.
Only one major work can confidently be attributed to Gutenberg's own workshop. This is the GUTENBERG BIBLE (also known as the 42-line Bible from the number of lines to each page), which was set and printed about 1455.
C. Fairley
Bibliography: Ing, J., Johann Gutenberg and His Bible (1988); McMurtrie, Douglas C., The Book, 3d ed. (1943); Scholderer, Victor, Johann Gutenberg: The Inventor of Printing (1963).
[93] Other figures indicate that it could have been as much as 140.000.000. (SCHINZ)
[94] The figures vary widely because of the "secondary" effect of hunger and diseases, and mass extermination in the death camps of the mining industry and other labor-intensive areas like the plantations which wasted the Indians like flies. It was out of compassion with the miseries of the Indians and to stop the senseless waste of human life that the Spaniards perpetrated that Bartholomeo de Las Casas proposed to import the african slaves, because they could better survive in the condition of slave labor. The death toll caused by this act of compassion is also listed in the table.
There could have been as many as 100 to 150 million in the secondary body count. Also remember that this "same procedure as last year" has continued more or less unabatedly until today. What is today going on in Guatemala, Chiapas, and the U.S. directed eco-poisoning of Coca plantations in Bolivia, Peru, and Colombia, always hits the Indians, never their colonial exploiters.
[95] The territories of East and West Prussia now covered by Poland and Russia, also areas in the Czech Republic, were cleared of Germans. About 16 million were removed, the ones listed died in the process.
[96] If I remember correctly, it is from Benjamin Disraeli.
[97] Thank you, Arnold, for the appropriate title!
[98] bubonic plague, from SOFT-ENCYC
Bubonic plague is an acute infection in humans and various species of rodents, caused by Yersinia pestis (formerly called Pasteurella pestis), a bacterium transmitted by fleas that have fed on infected rodents. After a flea has fed on blood from the skin of an infected rodent, usually a rat, the ingested plague bacteria multiply in the flea's upper digestive tract and eventually obstruct it. Then, when the flea feeds again, on a human or another rodent, the obstruction causes the freshly ingested blood to be regurgitated back into the bite, along with plague bacteria. The circulatory system of the bitten individual then carries the bacteria throughout the body.
The first signs of illness in humans appear suddenly, within about a week. In a few hours the body temperature rises to about 40 deg C (104 deg F), and the victim becomes gravely ill, experiencing vomiting, muscular pain, mental disorganization, and delirium. The lymph nodes throughout the body, especially those in the groin and the thighs, become enlarged and extremely painful. The inflamed lymph nodes, called buboes (from which the disease gets its name), become filled with pus, and the disease spreads through the body by way of the infected bloodstream and the lymphatic system. In 60-90 percent of untreated cases the infection is overwhelming and causes death within a few days.
Plague pneumonia, or pneumonic plague, is caused by the same bacteria as bubonic plague but is acquired by inhaling infected droplets from the lungs of someone whose plague infection has spread to the respiratory system. This is the most contagious form of the disease and the form that progresses most rapidly, with death usually occurring in less than three days in virtually all untreated cases.
Historic Epidemics
Respiratory transmission was mainly responsible for the historic plague epidemics that swept across entire continents and wiped out tens of millions of people. One such epidemic killed an estimated 100 million people in the Middle East, Europe, and Asia during the 6th century. Another epidemic in the same regions during the 14th century--known as the Black Death--killed one-fourth to one-half the population of Europe, or about 75 million people.
Small epidemics of bubonic plague continue to occur in widespread regions of the world, including the United States. The epidemics fail to spread beyond local outbreaks, however, which may suggest that less virulent strains of the plague bacterium have developed over the years and conferred a relative immunity to many people. That plague does recur indicates its existence as a chronic disease among wild rodents.
[99] One example going in this direction is that of the chinese executioner famed for his swiftness and speed with which he handled his sword. When one day he swissssshhhhh-ed his sword at the neck of one recipient of his art, the fellow said: "Oh, I think you missed". The executioner replied calmly and courteously: "Would you please nod, Sir?" The japanese Samurai, of course, were all experts like this. One Japanese propaganda movie in WW2 showed a Samurai chop off the barrel of a machine gun with his sword. I believe the Japanese propaganda ministery didn't need to lie this time.
[100] "Sie sollen dran glauben", literally "let them believe in it", is the German expression for "Let the sword tell them what the truth is".
[101] The older term "matriarchy" (BACHOFEN) is misleading because it forces the reader subtily into a pattern formed after the patri-archy of male-dominated hierarchical civilization. Matristic societies probably knew no "archy" (or dominance by military force). An alternative term would be "matrifocal", indicating the unison of the mother and the focus, or hearth, the life-supporting fire, were the center of cultured life of those ages during about one million years.
[102] From: SOFT-ENCYC.
Runes are the 24 letters (later 16 in Scandinavia and 30 or more in Anglo-Saxon England) of an ancient Germanic alphabet used from the 2d or 3d to the 16th century. Perhaps derived ultimately from the Etruscan alphabet (see WRITING SYSTEMS, EVOLUTION OF), the runic alphabet was used mainly for charms and inscriptions, on stone, wood, metal, or bone. Each letter had a name, which was itself a meaningful word. The rune f, for instance, could stand for either the sound "f" or the fehu, "cattle," which was the name given to the rune.
David Yerkes
Bibliography: Blum, Ralph, The New Book of Runes (1987); Elliott, Ralph W. V., Runes: An Introduction (1959); Kim, Ralph, The Book of Rune (1982); Odenstedt, Bengt, On the Origin and Early History of the Runic Script (1990); Page, Raymond I., Runes (1988).
[103] From: SOFT-ENCYC.
Khufu, or Cheops, fl. c.2680 BC, was the king of ancient Egypt who directed the construction of the Great Pyramid at Giza (see PYRAMIDS), the largest tomb-pyramid ever built. He was the son and successor of King Snefru, who founded the 4th dynasty (c.2613-2498). During his reign, Khufu mobilized nearly all of Egypt's male work force for his monumental building project. In 1954 remains of the 43-m (142-ft) funerary ship of Khufu were discovered near the Great Pyramid; a second boat was found in 1987. An ivory statuette found in the temple at Abydos and thought to depict Khufu is in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.

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