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Old 27-03-2016, 08:29   #76
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Re: Ancient navigation

Thanks Lass, never knew that.
I think I'll just shut up now lol.
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Old 27-03-2016, 08:48   #77
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Re: Ancient navigation

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Originally Posted by Factor View Post
I am sure thats relevant - just not sure how?

(...)
Thor discovered things which did not exist. He wrote books. He was not alone.

It is actually quite interesting that all such 'discoveries' are made by white men writing books. As if there were no literate Polynesians to tell us their story.

Right now I am reading a most interesting book by Daniel Kahneman. One of many things he talks about is how we are unwilling to accept other, better explanations of reality once we have created or acquired the first one.

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Old 27-03-2016, 09:41   #78
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Re: Ancient navigation

I find it interesting that most people are awed by the accomplishments of people before modern technology when ,in fact, many of the world greatest feats and discoveries happened during these times. The greatest technological device ever created was the human brain and, even today, its infinite possibilities have been largely untapped. The entire contiguous maritime world was discovered and largely populated before the use of modern navigational instruments by seafarers and land-based explorers who used a highly honed brain well-attuned to the natural world in which they lived. We can still see these skills today by survival hunters with primitive weapons who must kill daily to survive. Their knowledge of a prey's behaviour, their habitat and effective means of killing are essential tools for a continued existence. Modern sailors have become so dependent upon their electronic toys that it would strike sheer panic in most when a GPS, Radar, AIS or electronic charts fail. And, it shows us how far we have strayed from our natural skills, abilities and instincts to travel by land or sea. Advancement? It's your call. Good luck and safe sailing.
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Old 27-03-2016, 09:42   #79
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Re: Ancient navigation

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Originally Posted by captain58sailin View Post

barnakiel, perhaps you could enlighten us as to your definition of a navigator and how the old Polynesians don't qualify under your definition.
A navigator is a person trained and skilled in navigation.

Ancient Polynesians do not apply along the same lines that ancient shamans do not apply as medicine doctors.

If we were to believe in all that is written in books, we would have to believe this depiction of a Polynesian dancer to be spot on.

Why should we accept definitions of Polynesian navigators (that lived centuries ago) from a modern day white guy (having his interest in selling adventure books)?

I cannot enlighten you, I am not on the mystic wagon.

b.
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Old 27-03-2016, 10:24   #80
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Re: Ancient navigation

Hmmm. This sounds like semantic gymnastics to me.

If you were told that somewhere to the south of you, there was a lost city and you took out over the fields to find it, you're an explorer at that point. If you counted your steps per hour and knew how long those steps were, you would have a rudimentary distance scale. We'll say you were able to check your surroundings and establish waypoints for your journey home. You found the city and returned home with the information which you wrote down on the back of a napkin. At this point, you are now a cartographer. If you hand that map to someone or even orally tell them how to get there and they take up the journey, they become a navigator.

A navigator by its own definition means the information has to be pre-existing. First time is an explorer, subsequent times are navigation. That's the way I see it anyway.
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Old 27-03-2016, 10:41   #81
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Re: Ancient navigation

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
Ancient Polynesians do not apply along the same lines that ancient shamans do not apply as medicine doctors.

b.
That's actually not correct. I would liken the ancient shamans to modern psychiatrists and psychologists. And since it has been scientifically established that up to 80% of the diseases are either psychosomatic to begin with or worsened by the mental state of the sufferer shamanic medicine, in the absence of modern methods and tools, was quite effective. Certainly much more effective than placebo effect on the doubting patient.

I recall one of my anthropology professors in the early 80s telling us about some secret experiments done in GB in the 50s where the subjects were hypnotized and in that state were told that the rubber tipped pencil they were touched with was actually a red hot iron rod. Sure enough they started having burn blisters at the touch points. That's shamanic medicine redux.
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Old 27-03-2016, 11:01   #82
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Re: Ancient navigation

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
A navigator is a person trained and skilled in navigation.
Polynesian navigators were both trained and skilled.

NOVA - Official Website | Polynesia's Genius Navigators
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Old 27-03-2016, 11:33   #83
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pirate Re: Ancient navigation

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Originally Posted by FSMike View Post
Well, my apologies to all concerned. I apparently did something creative with the keyboard, which is entirely possible since I'm basically computer illiterate. I prefer to think that as opposed to having hallucinations (it's a long time since the 60s).

One unanswered bit - I am unable to find the "Hokule'a Circumnavigation" thread on new posts. Why would that be?
I looked through new posts from current to beyond the date/time I started that thread but its not there. I have to go to the particular forum to find it.
Of course the very act of posting this will make it miraculously appear lol.
Thanks
Just drop the search box and click on threads started by you
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Old 27-03-2016, 12:36   #84
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Re: Ancient navigation

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post

Why should we accept definitions of Polynesian navigators (that lived centuries ago) from a modern day white guy (having his interest in selling adventure books)?.
Because it was university approved funded and reviewed scientific research.

But look apparently only white europeans can achieve anything, so go with your prejudices. Facts will never beat prejudice.
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Old 27-03-2016, 13:00   #85
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Re: Ancient navigation

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Because it was university approved funded and reviewed scientific research.

But look apparently only white europeans can achieve anything, so go with your prejudices. Facts will never beat prejudice.
Global warming was also university approved and reviewed scientific research. Later it was found to be driven mostly by university staff interested in receiving grants and holding on to their otherwise unjustified jobs.

I agree with you that facts can't beat religion, prejudice nor bad science. If this my attitude you resolve to label as prejudiced then I am OK with your label.

White Europeans apparently achieved quite a lot: flew to the moon, composed Symphony No. 9 in D minor, discovered Polynesia. Not to say other cultures did not achieve other things. If a Polynesian eats a German cruiser it does not make the whole nation cannibals.

We have been to Polynesia and we liked people there. We did not see any getting ready for a serious offshore passage nor were we offered any lessons in navigation. Quite odd, given their love for and skill in navigation.

Apparently, they keep it to themselves. It takes a genius like Lewis to dig it out against their will and make it known to the unprejudiced reader.

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Old 27-03-2016, 19:48   #86
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Re: Ancient navigation

"Using no instruments, the canoe team navigated as their ancestors did, by the stars. They had no maps, no sextants, no compasses, and they navigated by observing the ocean and sky, reading the stars and swells. The paths of stars and rhythms of the ocean guided them by night and the color of sky and the sun, the shapes of clouds, and the direction from which the swells were coming, guided them by day....

For the ancient Polynesians, finding Easter Island, a small 64-square-mile speck in this vast ocean, must have been like finding a needle in a haystack; but the Polynesian community today is convinced their navigators intuitively discovered and settled this island.
"

So they never had been there, did not known the stars to make the navigation, neither they know the rhythm of ocean and waves to arrive there but they could get there by intuition. Kind of magic

Navigation is not only find a place but going there and to get back. Easter Island suffered massive famine and depopulation due to most resources to be consumed and yet they were not able to flee to other Islands or to the American continent.

"About 1,500 years ago the adventurous chief, Hotu Matu'a, led his people to the isolated island of Rapa Nui where they lived in isolation from the rest of Polynesia for many generations."

http://www.polynesia.com/polynesian_.../#.VviQeuIgu00
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Old 27-03-2016, 20:24   #87
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Re: Ancient navigation

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"Using no instruments, the canoe team navigated as their ancestors did, by the stars. They had no maps, no sextants, no compasses, and they navigated by observing the ocean and sky, reading the stars and swells. The paths of stars and rhythms of the ocean guided them by night and the color of sky and the sun, the shapes of clouds, and the direction from which the swells were coming, guided them by day....

For the ancient Polynesians, finding Easter Island, a small 64-square-mile speck in this vast ocean, must have been like finding a needle in a haystack; but the Polynesian community today is convinced their navigators intuitively discovered and settled this island.
"

So they never had been there, did not known the stars to make the navigation, neither they know the rhythm of ocean and waves to arrive there but they could get there by intuition. Kind of magic

Navigation is not only find a place but going there and get back. Easter Island suffered massive famine and depopulation due to most resources to be consumed and yet they were not able to flee to other Islands or to the American continent.
Since human development is not linear ALL civilizations/populations go through periods of development growth and decline. The ancestors of Easter Island's current inhabitants were in fact more nautically advanced than the current indigenous population. To think otherwise just flies in the face of facts and history. Same with most other Pacific islanders who got there centuries or even millenia before the Europeans "discovered" them. The very concept of a European "discovery of new lands" of any place which already had indigenous population is utterly ridiculous and frankly stupid.

The main reason Easter islanders could not pick up and leave was that already for about 300 years or longer they have lost their knowledge of open ocean canoe building and navigation. As did many other Pacific islanders. Read the "Last Navigator" and you will understand how easy it is for a small group of individuals on any particular island to lose the precious knowledge, especially due to the fact that initially only very few are entrusted with it. Not to mention the loss of canoe building materials with centuries of massive deforestation and such.

Oh, and btw, they WERE able to predict an island for many miles before they could even see the birds. I forget the details but that book lists the distances from which they could/can predict that land is ahead. Longest would be from the way the waves move, then the birds, then the clouds, etc. And they would adjust their direction accordingly.

And since the Polynesians had started in Taiwan 4,000-6,000 years ago and reached their last destination in Hawaii about 14c CE they were much better explorers and navigators than any Europeans up to that time, or even up to Cook's time.
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Old 28-03-2016, 03:22   #88
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Re: Ancient navigation

Knowledge that is lost to them (the Polynesians) is lost to us as well (since we had already lost it as well, and were depending on new technology.)

Humanity have traveled far, and left little archeological record, and therefore, it is really difficult to document where who went, and when. I'm convinced it's been a lot longer than can be documented scientifically. It is the newer discoveries that have convinced me.

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Old 28-03-2016, 03:44   #89
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Re: Ancient navigation

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White Europeans apparently achieved quite a lot: flew to the moon, composed Symphony No. 9 in D minor, discovered Polynesia..
They didn't discover Polynesia, it wasn't lost.
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Old 28-03-2016, 06:24   #90
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Re: Ancient navigation

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...
And since the Polynesians had started in Taiwan 4,000-6,000 years ago and reached their last destination in Hawaii about 14c CE they were much better explorers and navigators than any Europeans up to that time, or even up to Cook's time.
You have an odd idea of navigation history. The Polynesians come from Asia, mostly Taiwan and before that from the continent, China and Malaysia:

"The Polynesian people are considered to be by linguistic, archaeological and human genetic ancestry .. their prehistoricorigins in the Malay Archipelago, and ultimately, in Taiwan."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polynesia

Migration is essentially different than a country making voyages and navigation to other places and back.

Migration is essentially a one way voyage and you don't know from the ones that left over populated Islands, in the hope of finding an Island to settle, how many have made it and the number that were lost at sea.

Essentially the migration on that area was due to over population and lack of resources on their native land and was a desperate measure. The migration followed the sea currents on the area and the expansion of Polynesians relates to that.

Once they arrived to a new place the boats used for the migration were not used to maintain regular trading relations with their original places neither the new lands were reclaimed by the original country from where they where departed. That is the essence of migration, basically a one way voyage. Once there they used the big boats to make smaller boats and used them for coastal sailing and fishing.

That has nothing to do with seafaring, that does not imply a single voyage to a place but a continuous activity, not a migration but voyages that are made by the citizens of a country, that return to that country. That can have as motive trading, fishing, exploration, military or naval conquest but on any of the cases nothing to do with a migration and it always implies a return voyage. That is the essence of navigation, to go and to get back.

It is completely different, in what regards navigation, to migrate to new places, following seas, currents and favorable winds or to establish a continuous and two way trading navigation route with another part of the world.

In what regards navigation and trading it seems that it was developed firstly on the Mediterranean. The First ones seem to have been the Minoan more than 3400 years ago, followed by the Phoenician at almost the same time.


Followed by the Greek:

You seem not to have noticed that it was the Europeans that reached Australia, Polynesia and that circumnavigated and not the Polynesians that reached Europe, as it would be if they were much better explorers and navigators.

Also when the Europeans reached those parts of the world their superiority in what regards sailing boats was such that they were taken in some places as Gods. That was only possible due to the shortness of knowledge regarding sailing ships, that were common in many parts of the world including China, Taiwan and Malaysia, only possible due to their isolationism and therefore lack of extensive sea voyaging or trade.

Here, some basic information regarding history of navigation and earth exploration:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_navigation
HISTORY OF EXPLORATION
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