Posts Tagged With: anthropology

History of sickness and medical art 7 : in preliterate society 4

A Mask dancing of Dogon( agricultural tribes) in the Middle West Africa

< A Mask dancing of Dogon( agricultural tribes) in the Middle West Africa  >


An etiology: Recognition of the world

 Although native’s recognition about the sickness and the medical art is unscientific and superstitious, the base of it is a thinking that gives on to modern society.

First, they have caught logically the principle of cause and effect about the sickness in their own way.

For example, they thought that a swelling of hand and foot originated in an abnormality of the internal organs, or when a sickness prevailed in a village, it was carried with insect or the wind, or an epilepsy began from temporary cutting of a brain.

Although they did not need explanation beyond it, and could not make the exact medical treatment, they always have tried a certain understanding and explanation for it.

They think that most of mental diseases depend on the supernatural causes (evil spirit).


In order for people to advocate a general etiology with physical element (body fluid and blood, etc.), we had to wait for the city civilization birth.

Medicinal herb use and magic of medical treatment was still the main thing.


 Her diseased part is purifying with leaves in Mexico. 

< Her diseased part is purifying with leaves in Mexico. >












Medical treatment and magic:  Animism

To think that the magic and the evil spirits are causes of the disease are that they are thinking with separating the soul from the body, and moreover assume that the natural world have human nature.

Possibly you might have thought, “While clouds come out and it is raining, the sun is escaping to want not to get wet to rain.”


Bushman living in Kalahari Desert may cure a poor bag of hunting.

First, the root of certain plant and the hoof of certain game animal are burned, and it becomes powder.

Subsequently, the droppings of the animal are mixed with it and it becomes a mash.

Several body surfaces of a hunter are injured with a razor, and the powder is rubbed in.

I guess that this is a courtesy to control misfortune by the indirect contact to the object, and the dirty things (impurity).

Thus, all medical treatment and the courtesy will develop from abundant experiences and the analogy.



< Bushman >


治療と呪術 : アニミズム











a dancing to cure

< a dancing to cure >


Magic, science, and religion   

The anatomy of the animal might deepen understanding to the physiology and the sickness.

Therefore pastoral people would be able to escape easily from a conception of magic more than agricultural people.

This may be one reason that pastoral people have little mask culture (where the magic is thought as important in).

I think that this had made a difference of scientific development, along with the growth of the city civilization.

Moreover, by ethnic group, the ultimate responsibility contracting a disease included a difference in whether it was caused by self or outside.

These might have given a big influence on religion that was born in ancient civilization.












Categories: culture+society, history+evolution, <english language, <japanese language, Series: History of sickness and medical art | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments

History of sickness and medical art 4: in preliterate society 2

sweat lodge, a steam room of North American First Nations 

< sweat lodge, a steam room of North American First Nations >


We look at how shaman treats some medical arts.


Medical art of the easy illness

As for an injury or a stomachache, people do not request shaman.

In the case of a stomachache, Tasmania indigenous people bite and drink some asteracea plant.

In the case of constipation, Pygmy people in Africa give liquid medicine into his body through a hollow stem of vine for an enema.

Each indigenous people use many medicinal herbs.

If injured, a surgical operation will also be performed, and a medicinal herb with a hemostatic effect is used.

American Indians give man the melted fat, when he is deficient in meat, before becoming atrocious or man-eating fantasy

A steam room is used for medical treatment in northern Eurasia and the North American Continent.













in Malaysia, a shaman is treating a medical art

< in Malaysia, a shaman is treating a medical art >


Treatment to depend on shaman



An illness wasn’t cured by easy method, and his physical strength declined gradually and he became thin.

In this instance, the people considered the evil spirit and magic to be the cause of it.

Shaman gives a patient the diagnosis and the treatment.

Diagnosis is to find a supernatural cause of a disease.

Was a soul of the patient pulled out? Someone who bore him a grudge shot a kiss of death to his body?

He clarifies the taboo and the crime that the patient perpetrated, and the spirit that brings an evil.

He identifies the cause by hearing an oracle in a possessed state, by interview, or by a fortune telling.








患者の魂が抜き取られたのか? 恨みを抱く者が呪って災いの種を身体に射込んだのか?




in Borneo island, people dance throughout the night, and a shaman removes a soul from her head or puts in it. 

< in Borneo island, people dance throughout the night, and a shaman removes a soul from her head or puts in it. >



The disposal is whether a soul is returned or an evil spirit is driven out or a risked place is removed.

Many methods are performed with a ceremony, mystic words, and the fetish.

Occasionally, people will continue to dance and to cry several days, and send away evil spirit or calm down an angry spirit.

Holding up a rat near patient’s head of headache, the shaman of Andes moves evil thing from the head to the rat, kills it, and finds out evil part by fortune telling of internal organs of the rat.

The act of shaman that takes out diseased internal organs only with fingers from outside of patient’s body is widely seen, too.

For the cause of disease, they may suck out directly and may use a phlebotomy, a smoking process, and a steam room.

A lot of medicinal herbs are employed with mystic words, giving the droppings of an animal for driving out an evil spirit is also seen all over the world.













a shaman sells several medical herb in Peru

< a shaman sells several medical herb in Peru >


Shaman has full knowledge of cultivation, extraction, process, and effect of medicinal herb, and properly uses it to alleviation of fever, painkilling, urination, purgative, etc. 

Especially, when a ceremony was held, the hallucinogen was necessary for not only shaman but also families other than the patient.


Next time, I look at the life of pastoral tribe of Kenya.











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History of sickness and medical art 4: in preliterate society

 a shaman of Orochon in Northeast Asia 

< a shaman of Orochon in Northeast Asia >


We watch sickness and medicine of the preliterate society several times from now on.

From their simple life, the consciousness of the sickness which not to be affected by the civilization is seen.

This is helpful for understanding the medicine of ancient civilization.


The indigenous people of a remote place had been living like refusing civilization.

Many of them escaped the conqueror, or wanted the new world, and stayed at the remote place.

They did not necessarily preserve the primordial society that traced back to 10,000 years before.










Nomad of the south Sudan

< Nomad of the south Sudan    >


The sickness

How are the indigenous people in the world looking at the sickness?

Many people distinguished the ordinary sickness (cold, fatigue) and the sickness which an evil spirit caused, and requested a medicine man in the latter case.

They thought that spirits and devils, magic and black art caused the sickness.

When anybody was cursed, the people believed that it caused the sickness and death, even if it was a great distance, or when a foreign matter (animal) invaded the body too.

There are good and evil spirits, and if they offend a spirit, it will become an evil spirit.

The dead became the spirit and loitered around, and people feared to be possessed by an evil spirit.








American Indian    

< American Indian    >


The correspondence to a sick person changed by various ethnic groups.

In the American Indian, he was treated kindly.

Furthermore one who recovered serious sickness was revered as the owner of unusual power.

By an ethnic group, a disability person was murdered, and when the starvation visited their area, a suicide and a desertion were performed.

The madman (mental patient) was thought that an evil spirit clungs to person, and he was kept away, and was maltreated or was murdered.

The psychotic behavior was considered to have shaman’s qualification in Eskimos etc.





エスキモーなどでは、精神病的な行動はシャーマンの資格が   あると見なされた。

a mask of medicine man in Congo, this mask have a purpose of threatening an evil spirit.

< a mask of medicine man in Congo, this mask have a purpose of threatening an evil spirit.  >


Medicine man

Medicine man is shaman.

His main role prevented a disaster such as bad crops by a prayer and was to decide a schedule of the village by divination.

It is said that he had the ability that can communicate with spirits.

He be respected in a village, but may be murdered if he fail.

If a tribe is big, the specialty in charge was divided among the accident, and the sickness etc.

One using medicinal herb take part ordinary sickness, and he pray still at using medicinal herb.


Continue to the next time.

呪 医    











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History of sickness and medical art 2:  Start of the cure 1


< a heart was pictured in an elephant’s picture, 25000 years ago, Cueva del Pindal in spain >


Since the creation of life, there were the sicknesses together with creatures.

On the other hand, the cure and the care developed together with the evolution of the creatures.

We look at the process of older period than modern humans.


Neanderthal also was taking care of fellows.


A male human bone of nearly 40 years old of only one eye and one hand was found in Shanidar cave of 30000 years ago in Iraq.

Probably, these obstacles were things from young times.

Therefore, if there were not care and offer of food from his family or fellow, he was not able to live.

In addition, about 1.7 million years ago in Kenya of Africa, though a Homo erectus had suffered from the excessive vitamin A syndrome, he was alive for a while.

This also had the possibility of caring for the sickness.

The example of curing the man ape is not found.















< a burial by Neanderthal in Shanidar cave >


The chimpanzee in the jungle of Africa cures the sickness.


Occasionally, they chew at the stem of a very bitter grass that they don’t eat always, and drink the sap.

His diarrhea and stomachache will disappear within two days after the feeding.

According to an inspection of the plant, it has become clear that it has an antibacterial action and an intestinal parasite has an effect.









< He is chewing at a stem of the grass to get rid of the parasitic worms. >


Moreover, occasionally, they swallow slowly without biting about tens of scabrous leaves.

Living parasitic worms were found in his defecation after several hours.

They have noticed the abnormality in their intestines, and they select and are executing an appropriate therapeutic procedure.


As they get into line with several fellows and face each other, they perform each other’s grooming.

This mainly is to remove parasitic worms or its eggs that adhered to their hair and skin.

They repair itchy places that are beyond the reach of a partner by using the finger and the mouth.

The repaired person seems pleasant, and may show the beginning of the healing.












< grooming >


It sometimes happens that they lick to take the dust of partner’s eye with a tongue.

They mutually guess other party’s health and are giving care and cure.

Such behavior plays a big role in the appeasement of the group.


Please don’t miss the next article!













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Birth of primitive art :  A table of contents and abstract

I show the list of a series ” Birth of primitive art”.

please look at  page of ” Birth of primitive art “.

1  2 3 4  5  67  8 9 10 11 12 13  14   15 16 17       



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Birth of primitive art 16: What did precede the primitive art? Part2


The Himba woman in northern Namibia 

< The Himba woman in northern Namibia >

 Last time, we looked at the oldest fine arts and the ocher that were used abundantly over the world.

Using the red selectively has concerned with the creation of fine arts.

This time, I will consider this.


The Himba woman has covered their body and hair with red ocher that dissolved with oil.

This is not only sunscreen, but also the female beauty that has symbolized blood color of life.









   the ancient architecture in China, Japan, and South Korea

< the ancient architecture in China, Japan, and South Korea >

The ancient architecture in East Asia was almost red color.

Fig. A is the oldest Buddhist temple in Luoyang, China (the 1st century).

Fig. B is a gate of Heian Jingu in Kyoto and was reproduce a part of Heiankyo of the 8th century.

Fig. C is a tower of the Buddhist temple in Koyasan, Japan.

Fig. D is a gate of the detached palace of the 15th century in Seoul, South Korean.


At present, although many of temples of the ancient city were fading, they were shining with vermilion at when they were built.

Since ancient times, the appearance of the king’s palace, the shrine, and the temple in East Asia was applied red.











a Ryukyu king is standing in front Shuri Castle. Buddha Amida was painted in Tibet.

< Left side, a Ryukyu king is standing in front Shuri Castle. Right Side, Buddha Amida was painted in Tibet. >

In Asia, the red had an important meaning.

Ryukyu Dynasty was the style of China as same as Korean Peninsula.

The dress for courtesy in three nations was the same crimson.

In Buddhism, the body color of the highest Buddha Amida was red.

The red color symbolizes authority and dignity。And it gives people an idea of great benefit.







Red color in Europe, Egypt, and South America 

< Red color in Europe, Egypt, and South America >

 On other continents, what is the red role?

Fig. A is a room of the Palace of Knossos in Crete (around the BC 19th century).

It was rare to apply red color to building in Europe.

Fig. B is Seth God in ancient Egypt, and its body color is red that means the calamity.

Fig. C is a Mass of martyrdom by the priest with red vestment.

In Christianity, although the red color meant the love, yet it more meant the evil and the sacrifice.

Fig. D is the female doll that was decorated with red for sacrifice in Inca Empire.

Probably, latter three were emphasized the minus images of the scorching sun or blood.









What do the red color mean?

Since ancient times, the red color was strongly concerned with good luck, disaster, love, and authority (sacredness) around the world.

It changed by the cultural sphere or the religion little by little.

The meaning of red was probably separated to two, because the people that lived in Middle East of dry climate or in Asia of moistness climate had the difference in the consciousness to the sun.

Even so, because it has a meaning that originates a long time ago, the red color has still continued to give strong impact.








We look back the evolution a little.

All from insect to primates, when it has been born, it has the smell (sexual pheromone), taste, and vision image (snake) that stir up a feeling of likes and dislikes.

A scholar says, “the reason that human beings have feeling special to red originates in having asked for fruits ripe of red color on tree.” 

The period from birth of the primates is 60 million years.





What is art?

The primitive man came to use the red color selectively, probably, because it had satisfied their comfortable feelings.

The revolutionary change occurred in that time, because the ability of associating some imagery and expressing the imagery was being born in their brain.

They had associated some imagery with the law of causality that they thought. Then they expressed it. It will give them a pleasant sensation and a sense of relief, and might had induced art.

At that time, if there was dense group society, the art was born at a breath, and the culture grew.

 It produced the necklace, the Venus, the statues of lion man, flutes, and many rock arts of game animal.


Next time, I look at other mysteries hidden in primitive fine arts.
















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Birth of primitive art 15 : What did precede the primitive art ? part1

 1 ブロンボス洞窟

< Blombos Cave in South Africa. A cave entrance is right-hand mountain side.  modern human beings lived 100,000 years ago. >

Till last time, we looked at the primitive fine arts since 35000 years ago in the world.

Didn’t human beings make fine arts during 5 million?

This time, I will approach this mystery.






The oldest figure

< The oldest figure >

Fig. A, the figure was found in Israel, was made of a red stone between 700000 and 230000 years ago, and was 4 cm in height.

 Fig. B, the figure was found in Morocco, was made of a quartz between 500000 and 300000 years ago, and was 6 cm in height. 

Red ocher had adhered to the surface.

Both are considered that primitive man made.


Ages ago, primitive man on the way of evolution was performing fine arts creation.





The oldest painting in Africa

< The oldest painting in Africa >

This painting found at the Apollo 11 cave in Namibia is estimated to date from approximately 25,000–27,000 years ago. It is an animal figure drawn on the slate.


At the south end of Africa, the creation was performed nearly in parallel to the Europe glacial epoch fine arts.




something like fine arts  

< something like fine arts  >

Fig. A are the oldest bead made of many shells between 140000 and 100000 years ago, and were found in the cave in Israel.

Fig. B is an ocher found at Blombos Cave in South Africa. On its surface was the straight line pattern engraved, and it was made 75000 years ago.

In the cave where modern human beings were living, 8000 pieces and 12 sharpened crayons of ocher were found.

There were also brown and yellow colors of ocher, but the red was the most.

Ocher with the oldest used marks was found in Zambia in Africa, and was thing of 250,000 years ago.

Fig. C is a plate was found at Neanderthal ruins in Hungary, it was made of ivory at 250000 years ago. Red ocher had adhered to the surface.

It is considered that people was using at the ceremony over a long period of time.

What does the appearance of the bead, the plate, and the ocher mean?

This is concerned with “what is fine art?” deeply


The answer will be concerned with the relation of red color of ocher and human beings.











Burial and red color 

< Burial and red color >

Fig.A is two small children’s burial at 27000 years ago in Austria. Many red ochers was scattered there.   

In burial of Cro-Magnon after 37000 years ago, accessories attached to the dead and ocher was scattered on it.

Although Neanderthal was burying after 70,000 years ago, the dead that was painted with red pigments is seen in various area of Europe.

Ocher was used also with many pictures in every area of the earth.

Fig.B is the inner room of an ancient tomb in Japan at 5th century, and it is also painted in red.

This red was made from mercury and sulfur.

     Since time began, the red color had an important meaning in every corner of the earth.


Next time, I want to explain this meaning.










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Birth of primitive art 14 : People who made first fine arts 3

 Rock-Art、Four hunters and a leader、south-eastern Spain、8000 years ago

< Rock-Art、Four hunters and a leader、south-eastern Spain、8000 years ago >

 This time, the change that occurred in Cro-Magnons heart is evident from the burial and the fine arts.

I examine the thing that the change brought, and also the cause.


Last time, although we looked at the influence of their settlement, it is more important that rich contacts increased into the family or the group.

Influence good for child rearing must have come out first.

When they gathered together, they probably enjoyed a long talk like present-day hunter-gatherers.

This probably grew their intelligence, language, and their culture.

Probably, this is one of the reasons in which Neanderthal who used fire and had language functions (cerebral language field and throat structure) lost battles with Cro-Magnon.





reconstruction of a burial, a ruins in Russia, 28000~20000 years ago

< reconstruction of a burial, a ruins in Russia, 28000~20000 years ago, by Don’s Maps >

What happened to Cro-Magnons family?

A 13-year-old boy lies on the left of the figure, and an 8-year-old girl lies on the right.

They dressed with protections against the cold from head to tip of foot entirely.

Splendid spears made of ivory and the necklace of beads, etc. were added in large quantities.


This burial clarifies the difference between Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon.

 Although Neanderthal also buried one person, they didn’t bury small child or more than one person.

Cro-Magnon performed a burial of mother and child for the first time in the cave in Israel at 90,000 years ago.

After that, the burial examples such as two small children and three adults increased in Eurasia from 40,000 years ago.

They began to be strongly conscious of the bonds of mother and child, a family, and a group.

Probably, respecting for maternity added on prayer of fertility, and it led to Venus statue and next mother goddess worship.





Originally, because hunter-gatherers have several problems in life with a lot of people, they dispersed easily. Similarly, they are hesitant to settle down.

Something that controls this minus feeling and advances must have happened in their heart.

Although advanced technology and intelligence were indispensable to adaptation to arctic cold, unless the bonds of family or group arose strongly, the epoch would not have happen.


But, gradually woman and magician are expressed carefully, and group behavior such as the hunting that was shown a prefatory picture came to be drawn in the last stage.

Furthermore, mother and child and the women who danced were also drawn.

On the other hand, drawing carefully game animals decreased.




Brain of modern humans, a red maker is group of neurons A10(VTA)

< Brain of modern humans, a red mark  is group of neurons A10(VTA)、by CMAJ >

What happened to Cro-Magnons brain?

Neurotransmitter dopamine is widely secreted from A10 for a long time in large quantities, especially to the frontal lobe.

Although neurotransmitters are tens of kinds, a dopamine is called a pleasure substance, and have a role to maintain a feeling of happiness and romantic feeling strongly.

A10 is like the big faucet that only human beings have.


The frontal lobe takes the central role on planning, conforming to a social norm, controlling feelings, and the consciousness is in it.

When dopamine is secreted into it, people continue to have strong motivation.

In this way, the epoch happened, didn’t it?

The background in which primitive fine arts arose in Europe was the interaction of global environment and human-beings evolution, and the interaction of their intelligence and the settlement in a group.

Furthermore the brain and the gene were deeply concerned with it.

Next time, we will look at some mystery of primitive fine arts.  






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Birth of primitive art 13 : People who made first fine arts 2

left side is modern human, right side is Neanderthal

< left side is modern human, right side is Neanderthal、by Wikipedia >

 Last time, we looked at the situation in which human beings had gone into Europe.

 Why did the Cro-Magnon begin first fine arts?

 The reason is explored together with readers.






Tools of Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon in Europe is compared

<  Tools of Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon in Europe is compared. >

 Fig. A shows the stone tool that Neanderthal made from 70000 to 50000 years ago. Figs. B and C show what the Cro-Magnon man made.

The stone tools were made from 20000 to 12000, and a harpoon was made of bone from 17000 to 11000 years ago.

The bone or horn implement rapidly developed since Cro-Magnon has appeared.

 Stone tools of Cro-Magnon became sharp edged tool. These and spear thrower enabled them to do efficient hunting. Moreover, they made the extreme clothes that matched their body with sharp cutlery and thin needle. These enabled the lives of extreme cold.





On the other hand, the reindeer and horse of the large animal traveled in large herds in this cold. They were waiting for them in a ravine etc. and they hunted them in a group.  Furthermore, extreme cold enabled preservation of a lot of meat. In this way, they became to settle down on ideal place one season in a group.


Which route does group of animals pass through?  Can a few mammoths be discovered?  

This was their big anxiety. Probably, when they were not able to predict, they wanted to depend on the prayer or the curse like indigenous people.


In this way, they worshipped the skull of game animal, and the mural painting of the animal.

A statue of lion man and several figure of magician suggest later idol worship.


一方、この寒さの中、大型のトナカイや馬が大群で移動していた。彼らは渓谷などでそれらを待ち伏せ, 集団で狩りをした。さらに極寒は大量の肉の保存を可能にした。こうして彼らは好適地に、集団で1シーズン定住を行うようになった。







Comparison of the dwelling 

< Comparison of the dwelling >

 Neanderthal made Fig. A, and Cro-Magnon made Figs. B and C.

 Fig. A is an imaginary picture of a shelter at a ruin in France, is about 15 m in length, and was made about 400,000 years ago.

It was built standing trees to holes and fixing these with stones.

Although it is the first construction dwelling in Europe, the oldest dwelling at 1.8 million years ago is found in Africa, and was very small.


Fig. B shows the restoration of a dwelling at the ruins in Ukraine, is about 6 m in diameter, and about 18,000 years ago.

It was built assembling trees, covering with furs, using bones of the mammoth as a weight for these.


Fig. C is an imaginary picture of dwelling at Gonnersdorf ruin in Germany, is about 6 m in diameter, and was made about 15,000 years ago.

It was built assembling trees, and stretching furs of horse on its frame.

In it, there were a cooking device that made with bones of the mammoth, and a cooking hole.

They lived on several dwellings like this during winter months in a group.

Probably, except this period, they went in quest of game animal, and lived life on the move.










Although the existence of a furnace was common in them, Figs. B and C were firm and adapted to extreme cold.

Originally, since hunter-gatherers move frequently, they carry neither a tool nor materials.

Therefore, a shelter becomes very simple as shown in Fig. A.


People that drew cave mural paintings lived in the entrance of cave and on rock shadow.

There, wind was interrupted, low tree have grown, and the water place was near.




洞窟壁画を描いた人々は深い河谷にある洞窟の入口や岩陰  で暮らした。そこは風が遮られ、低木も茂り、水場も近かった。


This settlement of a glacial epoch brought about fundamental changes to people.

They were able to been having Venus statues that were sculptured and made of clay near themselves.

The settlement by large group also became to enable the allocation of tasks, and entrust mural painting to skillful person.

These led to development of fine arts and technology.

 Since they repeatedly have grouped together and have broken up, it promoted the exchange of knowledge and goods.

 The acquisition range of stone tool spread from a few kilometers to a few hundred kilometers.

 In this way, Cro-Magnon created the primitive fine arts in the extreme cold.


Next time, we will look at the important impact that the settlement caused further.











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Birth of primitive art 8: primitive arts other than Europe 1

  rock arts in Tassili-n-Ajjer       

< rock arts in Tassili-n-Ajjer  >

The first fine arts of the human beings were born in Europe of the glacial epoch, and eventually were lost.

 However, primitive fine arts were born in different parts of the world after that.

We look at the arts in different parts simply.





a map of primitive fine arts、fine arts of glacial epoch were born in a red part, other primitive fine arts were born in No. 1~7.

< a map of primitive fine arts、fine arts of glacial epoch were born in a red part, other primitive fine arts were born in No. 1~7. >

The primitive fine arts in Africa 1 and 2, India 3, Australia 4, and America 6 and 7 were rock arts.

 They are reflecting a life of hunting and gathering life. The indigenous people are continuing drawing them in some locations until recently. For this reason, establishing inaugural year of drawing pictures is difficult.

 Japan made many Venus image out of clay, but didn’t make rock arts.  japan is only special.




map No.1,  Tassili n'Ajjer,  Algeria  

< map No.1,  Tassili n’Ajjer,  Algeria  >

 Although there is in the middle in Sahara Desert here now, was in rich green those days.

 The rock arts on cliffs began to be drawn from 8000 years ago, and stopped by advance of desertification before long.

 Although at first they have lived a life of hunting and gathering, the paintings show that their lives changed from cow breeding to the trade on a horse.

The painting place is near once the water place, and will be in which religious service and ceremony were performed.






Tassili n'Ajjer,  a rock art in times of hunting and gathering  

< Tassili n’Ajjer,  a rock art in times of hunting and gathering  >

 Upper two persons wear some decorations to head, neck, and arm, and the scares in sequence of white points are on the body.

 This scar is a custom that has continued in Central Africa still.

 On the lower side, there are a goat, several playing children, a visionary animal, and tent like jellyfish.

 Each is no relation, the observing point is freedom, and they painted it by priority of how important.

 There isn’t sacredness on it, but I feel pleasure and familiarity to it.






Tassili n'Ajjer,  a rock art in times of cattle breeding 

< Tassili n’Ajjer,  a rock art in times of cattle breeding > 

Hunter that have an uplifting feeling, curved ships, and a herd of cattle that was made distinction of sex, these are painted in it.

Dancing, war, home life, carriage, religious rite, etc. were painted on rock arts of this time.

Brown is a basic tone of the painting, green and white also are added.




map No.2,Tsodilo Hills, Botswana, phot by Jaap Sikkema

< map No.2,Tsodilo Hills, Botswana, phot by Jaap Sikkema >

Bushman (Sun) is continuing a traditional life of hunting and gathering in the Kalahari Desert in Botswana.

In the north direction, there are mountains that they called Tsodilo Hills and regard as sacred.

Several thousands of the rock arts that have been painted by them from 2500 years ago remain here.

One theory is it began at 20000 years ago.



Tsodilo Hills,  rock arts by Bushman

Tsodilo Hills,  rock arts by Bushman

< Tsodilo Hills,  rock arts by Bushman > 

The image above is seen painting of ox and rhinoceros, and a Bushman. The image below is seen eland and giraffe. 

The theme of the paintings is mainly wild animal, hunting, and fishing.

Additionally, there are Dancing, war, rain-making rituals, musical instrument performance, and religion ceremony with wearing mask and with dancing.

When it becomes hundreds of years ago, impressive paintings appear. 

There are vast amounts of rock arts in Southern Africa. Bushman paints these from about 6000 years ago to until the 19th century.

People in Africa also had painted rock arts from 8000 years ago.

Next time, we look at primitive fine arts in other continents. 








Categories: culture+society, history+evolution, <english language, <japanese language, Series: Birth of primitive art | Tags: , , ,

Misunderstanding of war 10: Uncivilized war

 アフリカの牛牧畜民,cattle herder of Africa

< cattle herder of Africa、They are not the people of this article. >

We have so far seen a large-scale war.

There, soldiers’ face cannot be seen, and complicated social circumstances twined around the war

We are hard to see the actual condition of war.

This time, we look at small-scale war and some uncivilized wars. Feeling and a desire have come out plainly there.





We look at some Wars of people of a preliterate society who live in the savanna in Africa and the jungle in New Guinea or South America.

The cattle herders of African savanna sometimes cause war of cow pillage.

If serious dryness come every about 20 years, there were that the number of cow in a village will decrease sharply.

Then, the villager asks an attacked village to a shaman and according to the fortune-telling, tens of adult men sortie with a spear.

The village is attacked, all cows in the village are pillaged, and almost all village people are massacred.







ニューギニア先住民、indigenous people in New Guinea

< indigenous people in New Guinea, They are not the people of this article. >

We look at the War of the Marine people who perform slash-and-burn and breeding of a pig in the New Guinea highland. The scale of a village is hundreds.

Poaching, theft of crops, and a woman’s kidnapping happen between villages, and if the dissatisfaction accumulates, it becomes war soon. 

At first, the men have a pavis and a bow and arrows and gather.

They line up side by side and confront each village’s member within gunshot distance, and the arrow of each other is shot. This is repeated during several weeks.

When they have not a settlement yet, they construct a row with a spear or an ax, and do a duel with one-on-one from the front, and one by one each goes a back of the row.

This may continue several months. And an armistice may be concluded for field labor. 

The stage bring more deaths is an attack. A village is attacked, fire is released and a villager is slaughtered indiscriminately.

The surviving villager flees. The house and field of the village are destroyed thoroughly and a cemetery is soiled.









ヤノマミ族,Yanomami people

< Yanomami people >

They live in the jungle with slash-and-burn and hunting and gathering in Brazil.

The village was usually connected with trade.

Occasionally, a banquet is performed and the village in alliance is invited.

A trouble may happen by the dissatisfaction of food or a present, etc., and it may develop into “a duel of striking each breast.”

In front of everybody, each men go an open space from both sides, a man hold both arms behind one’s back, and projected his breast.

A man knocks a rival breast by his fist at full power. This is performed until either falls down. There are not the dead.

Subsequently, there is “battle of a heavy stick.”

Two men alternately knock each head with a heavy stick about 3 m length.

Since one side carries out bloodshed and falls down, both sides start to battle. If there is the death, it will develop into “an attack. 

If it is a case of other villages, about ten persons’ party will waylay on outskirts of the village at midnight. The raiding party kills one person, and withdraws quickly.

War of the last stage is ” a deceptive attack”.  They fake out the enemy and invite them to a banquet.

These indigenous people’s war is old and is not in present time.











In this way, when we look at war of a primitive society, there are some common features.

  • The beginning war is formalized, and there are little casualties and damage.
  • However, when casualties come out, it may escalate.
  • If it escalates, a brake will not be effective against slaughter or pillage.
  • The men become violent in the society where the battle is becoming commonplace.  


Human beings have accumulated the culture that reduces theft, homicide and revenge, etc. leading to a conflict.

We experienced both the great wars in the 20th century, and did we study the devices for reducing the war?


  • 初期の戦闘は形式化されており、死傷者や被害が少ないようになっている。
  • しかし、死傷者が出るとエスカレートしてしまうことがある。
  • エスカレートしてしまうと、殺戮や略奪に歯止めが効かない。
  • 戦闘が常態化している社会では、男は暴力的である。





Categories: culture+society, history+evolution, <english language, <japanese language, opinion, Series: misunderstanding of war | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Origin of mind sir.17 // Humankind’s tragedy and catastrophe

Invasion of Normandy in the movie 、ノルマンデイー上陸作戦

< Invasion of Normandy in the movie >

 This time, it becomes the opposite of the last theme ” humankind’s strength.”

 This theme is the problem that it has occurred frequently and I fear most.

The humankind has the mentality of big defect.

However, I think there is always a road if well aware of it.

 Grooming  グルーミング

< Grooming : it is an important appeasement policy. by Kyoto University>

I think that unification of a social hierarchy and a one male one female system became a key to the development of humankind.

However, this seems not to be researched. Though if possible, I want you to clarify with game theory etc.

The social hierarchy will be a developed type of a mock fitting and does not persist in a land like a territory.

Many animals had the hierarchy mutually accept superiority or inferiority for a limited time only.

By that, they made it possible to avoid conflict and to cooperate.

The social hierarchy of the animal kingdom differs from the class conflict of human society.

The greatest difference is the boss shift in a cycle of several years.

It is determined by a boss individual’s fighting power, and the superiority or inferiority of friend support.

Therefore, although a leader uses violence, he also performs protection of the weak and a female.

If it is not made, a boss will lose at the next conflict (it is the same as an election of human society).

Composition of the Humankind’s tragedy 人類悲劇の構造

< Composition of the Humankind’s tragedy >

The kind of conflict is not exhausted for humankind, a big war, a race slaughter, a slave system, the left wing and the right wing, a man and a woman, etc.

It seems that a chimpanzee society will be have a male massacre in a territorial fight.

Other animals cooperatively don’t slaughter like humankind.

 Why does it happen only to humankind?

At the beginning, please see chimpanzee society (left fig.).

This society is maintained by the social hierarchy and the altruistic behavior, and is strongly connected by the sympathy.

The chimpanzee has the three outstanding abilities except for humankind.

The sympathy becomes conversely hostile to the person of a different territory.

Humankind added two elements than the three abilities that the chimpanzee has.

It is the family and the society had culture and can be accumulated

The former induced the strong love to a family and it became the strongest sympathy in the earth.

The latter develops rapidly from about tens of thousands of years.

It produced various growth possibilities.

When the state was born, accumulation of economy, military affairs, knowledge, and social-related (bonds) took place.

However, the accumulation will make a difference and a wall from all dimensions.

A pink’s circle of the right figure is same with a chimpanzee.

The green ring of the outside is shown that the firm unification by society and culture.

This means a family, the village, the tribe, the race, and the state.

This connects every class with the strongest love, and can be said to be the expansion version of a social hierarchy.

The red ring of outside shows that it is very competitive to other society.

After all, the humankind was the strongest and became cruel because it.

Jesus Christ of Israel, mozi (Bokushi ) of China, and Shin ran of Japan said as follows.

Epistle to the Romans 13-9

[…if there be any other commandment, it is summed up in this word, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. ]

Jian ai (kenai) 3

[ It is accordant to the providence of the universe not to separate each other, to love each other and to help each other. ]

Tan’isho 5

[ Shin ran had chanted the Buddhist invocation once for a deceased father and mother’s memorial service. ]

Next time you will see the symbol which humankind’ mentality and culture induced

Categories: culture+society, history+evolution, <english language, Series: Origin of mind | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Origin of mind sir.16 // Evolution of mind, and humankind’s strength


humankind chimpanzee

< by Nikkei-science >

This time we will focus about the history of humankind and Japanese culture.

I introduce one theory of evolutionary psychology simply and explore the reason of humankind’s strength.


 Evolution of mind

< Evolution of mind >

Upper half figure shows how the function of a brain changed along with the development of humankind.

The left is a stage of chimpanzee, the center is primitive man and the right is modern humans.

It is notionally expressed notionally by the method of combination that several functions of a brain ware related to.

This is Steven Mithen’s theory, uses the cognitive archaeology and tries to explain the origin of art, religion, and science.

A fundamental idea of his theory supposes that five uniquely domains of intelligence first generated in a brain, and these were unified under a general intelligence along with evolution.

This has obtained the hint from the child’s development psychology and the stone tools which fossil men left after a few million ago.


humankind’s strength 


< humankind’s strength >

One of the humankind’s strength is already shown according to “Ser. 13 the family’s origin.”

Why did humankind become the strongest animal on the earth?

I think the point is in constitution of society power。That makes the unity increased

markedly our power and the culture was producing development.

The king chimpanzee of a jungle is “plural male plural female” society and has a strong social hierarchy.

On the other hand, there are many animals which take “one male one female” system.

Fossil men developed the social hierarchy in the large group, and also got “one male one female” system in the middle.

The former enabled a large group to maintain the peaceful order and strengthened the group to the enemy.

The latter produced the unity power led by the family.

The latter produced the strongest unity power connected by the family and contributed to intelligence training and cultural development.

These conjointly raised the fitness of an individual and a group.

In this way, humankind got the foundation of big development.

Next time we consider humankind’s tragedy and catastrophe.


Categories: culture+society, history+evolution, <english language, <japanese language, Series: Origin of mind | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Origin of mind sir.14  // a brain


brain 脳

Last time we looked at the origin of family.

This time we will see the changes in the brain occur in connection with evolution.





structure and evolution of brain : 脳の進化と構造


< structure and evolution of brain : 脳の進化と構造 >


As we have seen, our brains obtained the base program of the social behavior by evolution.

The trace is in a cerebral structure.

Brain development is divided into three steps.

It consists of the oldest brain stem, the cerebral limbic system located centrally in brain and the newest cerebrum wrapped them (figure upper right).

This corresponds to evolution of primitive animal, to reptiles, into the mammals.

While three steps of brains respectively react, it has structure adjusted as a whole.

An old brain reacts in an instant, and the last brain synthesizes much information, and judges the last intentionally.

The phylogeny is in the figure upper left.

For humans, a blue cerebrum is large and also outside cerebrum neocortex is the maximum most.

Furthermore, the portions that developed only into human beings’ brain are two language centers.

When we talk and hear, it is always functioning.

The proportion of the brain neocortex in the brain is 80% in the human, it is 35% on the average of the mammal.













The microphotograph of the neuron network within a brain is upper left figure, and the figure of the junction between nerves is located at the lower right.

If I say one special feature to the brain, it is that nerve connection (synapse) of several 100 trillion is carrying out parallel processing to serve both as memory and operation (a supercomputer is the example).

This is the wonderfulness of the brain of an animal. However, there is also a problem.

It is unable to perform correction of the error simply, by reason that the cerebral control of memory and operation are almost automatic.







growth of brain : 脳の肥大化 


< growth of brain  : 脳の肥大化 >


Although there are various theories, I can’t assertive it and can say following things in general.

The weight ratio of the brain became large as it evolves into a great ape and human beings from the primates.

Probably, this kept pace with development of tool using, language using, and social behavior.

The proportion of the cerebrum neocortex in the brain is 80% in the human beings.

It is 35% on the average of the mammal.

This part has been growing since the chimpanzee that makes about 100 groups, and is related to the scale of the social grouping.

Furthermore, human beings’ frontal lobe (upper right figure) is carrying out growth near double compared with the chimpanzee.

The frontal lobe is a part demonstrates most human ability.

It is a part that performs to make a long-range plan, to encourage oneself toward a target, controls feeling, and to act intentionally.

Furthermore, this portion is required in order to induce art, and war and a physical theory.











Why did growth of this brain occur?

Probably, development of the high eyesight of a life on a tree and dexterous fingers became the trigger at first.

After that, the transfer to the savanna by drying stimulated a walk in erect posture from bipedal locomotion like chimpanzee, and the birth canal in a pelvis was reduced.

Then, the female came to give birth to a small prematurely born baby.

A baby’s growth became late and a long period of time late again, and the gigantic brain was attained.

The family was born for child rearing.

The society where a family and a group live together was begun and born on the earth.

Last time, I explained this circumstance.

Strange to say, the time when a stone tool becomes complicated at and a new kind with a big brain is born was a glacial epoch of arctic cold.

Next time (sir.15) we will see the wonder of brain and the Intelligence development of child.

Page [ Origin of mind ] is a table of contents.













Categories: culture+society, history+evolution, <english language, <japanese language, science, Series: Origin of mind | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Origin of mind sir.13  /  Origin of family


 family 家族


Last time we easily looked at the evolution during the preceding 5 million years.

 After a certain incident in during this period, human beings become the strongest animal in the earth.

 This time we will look at this. What was the incident?  What did it bring human beings?






 The origin of the family of humanity : 人類の家族の起源


< The origin of the family of humanity : 人類の家族の起源 >


The accident occurred in the land of Africa and it was a prologue to the big change.

 It begins to be fossil hominid that he had made a simple hut began 1.8 million years ago.

They place many stones in a circle, made it leaning against a branch in the shape of a cone there.

 The chimpanzee that lives in the jungle moves the bed on the tree every day.

 This is to avoid lice.








Mankind has been faced with an increase in a childcare period and premature birth of baby by the enlargement of the brain and upright walking.

 If a female gives birth to three children, it must concentrate on childbirth and childcare in about ten years.

This was a big issue.

 Then, the dwelling for childcare in the savanna was needed first.

 For a long time, a male (father) that performed distribution of food and defense from many carnivores on the savanna was needed for a female and a child.

 On the other hand, although the chimpanzee male near an ancestor copulates, they perform neither a child’s childcare nor food distribution.

 The sex solved this big issue.

 A swelling (pink of the hips of a photograph) of a sexual skin like a chimpanzee will be lost, and they will copulate at any time.

 The present family of “one male one male” was born after this.

 Male reduces the struggle between the males and females became able to receive assistance from the male.

 Bonobo began to use sex for appeasement behavior 1 million years ago before us.














The marks of the change at this time remain also in the man of today.

 The females became lousy by living in the same place for a long time.

 The females with few hairs are more resistant to the skin disease and the epidemic.

 Melamine pigment appeared 1,200,000 years ago, and their skin was protected instead of the hairs.

 Probably, it is the vestiges of this incident that many modern women shave useless hair.








Abridged sentence.

 Human beings will be connected with the strong bonds called husband and wife.

 The family contributed to cultural formation and succession through childcare, and became the foundation to social development.

  Next time we will see brain.







Categories: culture+society, history+evolution, <english language, <japanese language, Series: Origin of mind | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Origin of mind sir.12 / Evolution during 5 million years


cave paintings in Lascaux, 15000 years ago : ラスコーの洞窟壁画

< cave paintings in Lascaux, 15000 years ago : ラスコーの洞窟壁画 >


The Last time, we looked at the relation between sex and society and the culture caused by these things.

This time, we will easily find the evolution during the preceding 5 million years since our early ancestors (fossil men) first separated from Chimpanzee.



evolution of fossil men 1 : 化石人類の進化


< evolution of fossil men 1 : 化石人類の進化 >


The first evolution of fossil man is in fog. It is sure that common ancestors of chimpanzee and us lived in the jungle in Africa.
An ape-man separated from the ancestor stepped forward one step in the prairie.

This was the beginning of a great leap.

The posterity soon pushed on to evolve the civilization that covers all the earths.

From 5 million to 2 million years ago, they progressed to erection and cerebral hypertrophy depending on the life and bipedal locomotion in the prairie.

There was a significant change in about 2 million years ago.

A stone tool of left in this figure is the oldest thing, 2.5 million years ago.

A stone tool of right was made about 1 million years after that.

They made hunting in groups, to build the hut, use fire, lost body hair, and also went out of Africa first.

This shows that cerebral development and the situation of social life changed.









evolution of fossil men 2 : 化石人類の進化 


< evolution of fossil men 2 : 化石人類の進化 >


The speed of evolution rose rapidly tens of thousands of years ago.

Neanderthal was active from about 100,000 years ago.

They became increasingly like modern man.

In extreme cold of the ice age in Europe, they made sharp stone tools (left in fig.), clothes out of fur, build big hut and hunting in big groups by design

They first performed the burial courtesy (ctr. in fig.) and enshrined animal’s bone

They supported a disabled person in a cave for tens of years.





At last, the modern man was born to Africa about 10 million years ago and spread to the whole earth.

It is important that Cro-Magnon lived in Europe.

Their hunting, tools (upper right in fig.), clothes and intelligence made more progress.

However, a bigger change is that they first made the cave painting, a bison image (under in fig.), the Venus image, and the flute which they in order to enjoy music.

Since the accessories at the time of burial had a difference, there is that the difference of wealth and poverty arose.

It is found out that the difference between wealth and poverty have occurred.








From 30000 to 15000 years ago, it seems to have suddenly the blossomed in Europe.

What happened to their group then?

Their long seasonal settlement first began and occurred and their trade range also spread.

This can strengthen the bonds of family and friends and would have prompted the development and succession of their culture.

Then the ice age went away and the land of snow and ice changed to the forest.

Farming and stock farming start soon and the city was made.








Abridged sentence.

l If various fossil men were born and disappeared. And remained man was modern man have slender body and an enlarged brain, and walk with upright posture.

l Our intelligence and social behavior were changed significantly on the last 500 million years.

Human beings became the strongest animal in the earth according to the incident of 180 million years ago.

Next time (sir.13) we will see this.


種々の化石人類は生まれては消えていきました。そして残ったのは肥大化した脳と直立歩行をする華奢な体型の現代人でした。 現代人の知能や社会行動は、この500万年の間にも徐々に発達し、さらに200万年前以降と3万年前以降に大きく発展したのです。

Categories: culture+society, history+evolution, <english language, <japanese language, Series: Origin of mind | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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