History 104A, August 29:  Mother Goddess, Animals and Group Dynamics

               Welcome to week three of summer school.  It does look like we

          will be moving hopefully in September next week to a quote/unquote

          compressed calendar which would have 15 or 16 weeks, including finals,

          of classes.  And that would enable us to start after labor day.  And

          then it would be a true Fall semester.  The problem is that the state,

          and I may have mentioned this, tied us to the high schools and so we

          have to have far more days than normal university systems.  We're

          trying to work it out.  It would extend classes a week.  And there

          would be a four week intercession in January where you could take

          classes or you could have your whole January off.  I like that.  Okay,

          enough with procedure.  Well, no, not really.

               A couple of things.  We have been -- thanks to Connie getting up

          on-line all of the lectures.  And at some point I will have an

          opportunity to do a little corrections.  They're not really

          corrections.  We're getting my lectures word for word, but sometimes they're a

          little more difficult to follow on the paper and they may not be quite

          as clear.  I will be doing some corrections on that so that they are a

          little clearer.  They won't be exactly what I said in class, but they

          may make more sense.  Sometimes by reading them, you realize why

          certain things are confusing.  I also put up online the PowerPoint

          presentation on civilization that I provided you in class, so that if

          anybody wants to take a look at it for their notes or whatever, that's

          up there as well.  Once again, my job is to make learning easier for

          you.  Your job of course is to fill it in as you see necessary.  And


          as I indicated, I will be placing a search engine up there shortly so

          that you can search the transcripts for any information that you want

          to gather.  Okay.

               Today will be our first group meeting.  We will finish up on what

          I titled women, homosexuals, beer, and civilization based upon a few

          of the things I pointed out earlier.  I left prostitutes out because

          that was sort of an aside with Gilgamesh, the tiles that we have

          turned up from the Sumerians.  In any case, I wanted today to take us

          from women and the mother Goddess to domestication of animals.  And I think I mentioned Robert

          Graves book the White Goddess which delineates some of these issues

          that I'm presenting.  I also mentioned an individual Brazilian

          anthropologist by the name of Gilberto Freire; that's F-R-E-I-R-E or

          F-R-E-Y-R-E, both ways.  In Freire's work, he also talks about how

          another element of civilization quote/unquote was brought to be and

          not necessarily civilization but the surplus food and the complexity

          of certain things, such as how in the world did we wind up developing

          domesticated animals?  We can see domesticated crops occurring as

          women harvesting/gathering began to view changes by accident and then

          were able to take their data processing units -- I love that -- and

          place it into work to analyze how they could better breed grain in

          such a way or mix various elements of grain to produce a more usable

          grain for such things as bread, et cetera and therefore creating a

          more stable population, the less need to move around.

               As we identified last time, basically the animals that we have as

          domesticated animals, which of course are usually listed as cows,


          pigs, sheep, goats, dogs -- they don't list cats too often.  It

          depends on who you read.  There are those who have questions whether

          cats really ever are domesticated -- elephants maybe, reindeer maybe.

          Again, those are big maybes.  Any other animals that I left out that

          would be considered domesticated that we use for food that you can

          think of?  The animals are fairly wild when in their natural state.

          And so the question arises, why were certain animals domesticated?

          How were the tamed traits inbred?  And one simple answer is that the

          animals that they would eat first or eliminate were the wildest.  They

          don't want to keep them in a pen too long.  So if they captured a whole herd of

          animals, the ones that were left there the longest were the tamest and

          they would interbreed accidentally or incidentally, meaning that the

          tame traits of those tame animals brought about a domestication of

          animals.  However, a number of anthropologists have argued -- is that

          the term anthropologists -- have argued that it was intentionally

          created through accident, which makes a weird commentary, that the

          reason the wildest animals were sacrificed first, not just for food

          but for sacrificing to the Mother Goddess, because they had symbols of

          the Mother Goddess and therefore they were worth sacrificing.  The

          tamer animals, the symbols weren't quite as distinctive.

               Thinking about the Mother Goddess, that, by the way, is usually

          identified with three characteristics and sometimes four, but the

          three tend to be -- the young virgin, usually born with the land as

          the land begins to come back and grow in its fertility in basically

          April.  As the wasteland poem by TS Elliot goes, April is the cruelest


          month breeding flowers out of dandelion --

          A    Lilacs.

               THE PROFESSOR:  Thanks.  I could see that you were mouthing it

          along with me.

               And that Mother Goddess is symbolized as the White Goddess,

          symbol of virginity.  And then comes the hot summer when women reach

          their -- I'm trying to put this in a way, I was going to say they're

          hot period of life at the time. Butttt-- They become the sex in the city group in their 20s

          and 30s.  And they become identified with reproduction and the red

          Goddess, red meaning hot.  And finally, they get to be hags at around

          25 -- just throw things at me again.  And that becomes the fall when

          the land begins to die and of course the holidays celebrating the hag

          and the death of the land and the last harvest is Halloween as the hag

          identified with the witch flies around with one of those animals that

          is identified with the Mother Goddess and that of course is the cat.

               Why is the cat identified with the females?  I mean, men want

          dogs and women want cats.  Of course that's a generalization, but --

          why is the cat identified with women?

          A    They became bitchy and sassy like a cat.

               THE PROFESSOR:  I didn't say that.  You said that.  Cats are

          bitchy and sassy.

          A    Yeah, for the most part like their natures.

               THE PROFESSOR:  It could be.  I won't get into that.  Let's look

          for less sexist statement.

          A    Well, at least it was a girl who said it.


          THE PROFESSOR:  Obviously.  I say things like that for laughs and

          a reaction, not meaning it, but even then

          people get pissed.  Thank you.  You stole my words.  Better

          independent, less control -- wouldn't that be nicer to say for a

          woman?  I think so.  Cats are -- you can't control them.

          A    Bitchy and sassy is much better to say.

               THE PROFESSOR:  You like bitchy and sassy?

          A    Well, it makes sense because mostly all girls are like that and

          not a lot of girls aren't.

               THE PROFESSOR:  How about women?

          A    Oh yeah, that's what I meant.

               THE PROFESSOR:  How about some other element of cats?  When are

          cats actively awake?

          A    At night.

               THE PROFESSOR:  Why is the night identified with women and the

          day with men generally in primitive societies?  What is the symbol of

          the night generally when you think of the night?

          A    The moon.

               THE PROFESSOR:  The moon generally is identified with the mother

          Goddess.  The sun with the father God, with the male God.  Why is the

          moon identified with women?

          A    Because it's pretty.

               THE PROFESSOR:  It's pretty.

          A    We're pretty.

               THE PROFESSOR:  And you're pretty.  My son came home when he was

          in second grade and he said, Dad, how come the girls get to go in the


          classroom first?  And being a teacher, I simply looked at him and

          said, Well son, why do you think girls get to go into the classroom

          first?  And he said, Because they're prettier.  And I looked at him

          and I said, Well, I don't know son.  I think boys are just as pretty

          as girls.  And he looked at me and said, Dad, you can have your

          opinion and I'll have mine.  Talk about sassy.  Isn't that sassy?  How

          come women are only sassy.  Men do that.  They should be called sassy as well.

               Why would the moon be identified with women?  Not too difficult

          really a question.

          A    That's the only time the men see them?

               THE PROFESSOR:  That's the only time the men see them at night. :0)

          A    You said during the day the men are like the workers, the

          provider.  And at night they go home to their women who are supposed

          to satisfy them.

               THE PROFESSOR:  Actually, it's a much easier answer.

          A    The moon has 28 day cycle.

          A    Oh.

               THE PROFESSOR:  Sorry about that.  And so the moon becomes, in

          that 28 day cycle, identified with women.  Interesting reaction.

          Well, the argument being made is the animals that were sacrificed in

          often cases were identified with the moon.  The cat at night, but also

          with the what do you call those kind of eyes?

          A    Cat eyes.

               THE PROFESSOR:  How is the dog in its wild state even non-wild

          state identified with the moon?


          A    Wolves.

               THE PROFESSOR:  How are they identified with the moon?

          A    They howl.

               THE PROFESSOR:  They howled at the moon.  And here's one for you.

          How are cows identified with the moon?  Don't tell me because they get

          fat and give milk.  How are cows identified with the moon?  The

          argument is that the crescent shaped horn, because the moon is often

          in crescent form and therefore sacrificing the bulls, cows with the

          better crescents was more of a compliment to the Gods.  And those with

          the smaller horns were left to breed.  Now you will find, in many

          societies, the cow identified with the female or at least the crescent

          horns.  In ancient Egypt it became the symbol of the Mother Goddess

          herself, often the moon shape or the crescent horns with the mother

          Goddess in Egypt called Isis I-S-I-S.  And what about the wild pig?

          Where's the crescent horn?  On its snout, spout, it's nose.  And what

          other animals did I mention?  The goat, crescent horn as well, also

          the cloven foot for the horse.  That's one of the domesticated

          animals, I guess, but I think they're more tamed.  Goats pigs --

          sheep, same thing.  Crescent horns become the symbol of what causes,

          according to this philosophy, the sacrifice of animals bringing about

          civilization based in the Mother Goddess.  And as we indicated, the

          symbols of the Mother Goddess abound in late Paleolithic moving into

          the Neolithic period.

               When do we begin to move in their period?  The answer, somewhere

          around 10,000 BCE.  Why?  What happened to bring about agriculture at


          around 10,000 BCE?  The melting of the icebergs.  We began to see a

          change in climate that began to create a far more fertile land in

          plateau regions first.  Later from, those plateaus where some of the

          grains are first developed they move into the river valleys we talked

          about.  And so the melting of the snows at around 10,000 begin the

          settlement process.  And it's at that time we begin to see the cities

          of Jarmo or at least villages like Jarmo and then Catal-Huyuk.  The

          basis then of civilization, but where, why?

               Another element that's been analyzed is, why does it takes place

          in the regions it does and not in other places?  The argument's given

          is that civilizations can only emerge where life is difficult and

          people need to struggle but not impossible.  It is very difficult to

          create civilizations where people's struggle means survival totally,

          such as perhaps in the rain forests of Africa.  Where life is easy,

          where things some easily, like on the South Pacific islands, people

          are too relaxed.  They're not about to struggle.  They don't have a

          lot to struggle for.  And so they live with nature as do those that

          struggle.  They have to live with nature.  They don't have a choice.

          You do not see the changes in technologies.  But in the river valleys,

          starting from the plateaus as we indicated, we begin to see a struggle

          but not ones that, where they're not able to overcome nature and begin

          to control their resources and create technologies such as irrigation,

          dams, canals, and even the ability to be able to read when the floods

          are coming and to keep records, to trade, to pass those records on in

          some fashion, either through a form of drawing or what's going to


          become a form of rudimental alphabet where various symbols are put

          together to create different combinations of words.  And of course the

          first two basic written languages we tend to talk about are cuneiform

          which develops where?

          A    Africa.

               THE PROFESSOR:  No.  In the area called Mesopotamia, the land

          between the two rivers.  Cuneiform is a wedge-shaped writing.  It is

          straight lines cut into basically clay because the area has an

          abundance of clay and very little rock to paint on.

               And the other starting in the Nile River Valley, hieroglyphics.

          It's a picture-shaped writing.  The cow symbol, the mother Goddess

          again, later gets turned on its side and later becomes the alpha or A

          with the Phoenician alphabet, and for some, symbolize the fish of

          Christianity, not this fish.  Of course my favorite fish symbols are

          the ones I have in my office.  It got the Darwin fish humping the

          Christian fish.

          A    Oh my.

               THE PROFESSOR:  And it's called procreation.  All right.  I

          couldn't resist it.  I wanted to put it on the back of my car, but I

          think the windows would get busted.  I wasn't about to.  I must admit

          that I love those people who become so clever and develop those

          things.  It's got nothing to do with religion.  It's just a reaction

          here.  Which does remind me of a point I want to make and I wanted to

          make earlier.  I will be touching on many issues that may be sensitive

          to some of you, such as religious issues, but I want it to be clear


          had my concern is not with the religion itself, which translates -- in

          this case, I am not going to, in a history class in a university, deal

          with the question of Jesus's existence let's say.  As a historian, my

          historical interest, my professional interest, not my personal one, is

          what the impact of the belief of Christianity and Jesus meant to

          future history.  For many of you, the existence may be important; but

          for the historian, what impact did it have, analysis a narrow

          historian dealing with let's say, the existence itself.  I'm looking

          for the impact of the knowledge rather than the fate/faith in the

          issues.  Keep that in mind.  I am not attempting to touch on the

          issues because they're controversial in our society.  Not that I mind

          touching on controversy.  That's another story.

               Okay.  There was also a written language in the Indus valley

          civilizations of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro.  The problem is, those

          languages have not yet been translated.  So we do not know what that

          language said or did or what the records indicated.  We are able to

          translate the cuneiform and the hieroglyphics based on rocks, I guess

          you would call them, such as the Rosetta stone that was found in Egypt

          in the 19th century that had three languages on them including

          hieroglyphics as one of the languages with Greek.  And we were able to

          make the translation.  We were able to do the same with something

          called a B-E-H-I-S-T-U-N Behistun stone/inscription  (known as the

         Mesopotamian Rosetta Stone) in the Mesopotamia area which

          included the cuneiform and the later Persian.  We would able to

          finally put the languages together.  Some languages, written languages

          are out there and we have not been able to come to any translations


          including -- I have a feeling that within a very short period of time

          with the use of computers we will be able to translate those languages

          or maybe we'll have a sort of written equivalent of the babble fish,

          which nobody knows what I'm talking about or maybe one or two people.


               We have a group meeting on Velikovsky.  The group meeting will be

          about 20 minutes.  You will go into the same groups you were in for

          the maps assignment.  I will be giving out sheets.  The person I give

          them to can be the first chairperson.  The chairpersons will change

          from meeting to meeting.  Each of you will have an opportunity to be

          chairperson, to grade other people in the group and get even.  There

          are two sheets that will go to everybody.  And I'll re-explain this, I

          suppose, in the group except the chairperson.  The chairperson will

          get one sheet.  On the sheets, the two of them, you will check on one

          self, on the other chair.  The one you check chair on, you will give

          to the chairperson.  The one you checked self on, you will keep for

          yourself.  At the end of the group meeting on the basis of 0 to 10,

          you will grade yourself on these questions.

               Fully prepared for the discussion.  You did all the reading and

          prepared a three by five card or the equivalent.  If you did that, you

          would give yourself a 10.  If you did all the reading and didn't

          prepare the three by five card, you might give yourself a seven or

          eight.  If you did only half the readings, I guess you'd give yourself

          a five, based on the last question which said you answered all the

          questions honestly.  If you have questions, you can ask me when we go



               Once again, self, keep, chair, give.  At the end of the meeting,

          you will give the chair your copy that says self-examine.  The chair

          will grade you on his or her copy and turn them all in to me.  The

          chairperson only gets one copy and they will check on that copy or

          that sheet both chair and self.  And they will turn that in with

          everybody else's.  The grade I will give you will be based on the

          grades you placed on the sheets, you, not the chairperson.  The

          chairperson's grade is to keep you honest within limitations.  That

          translates to, if there is a big discrepancy where the chairperson

          gave you five and you gave yourself tens and I was not there to hear

          it or couldn't remember who you were, then I will generally create a

          sort of an average of the two or whatever.  Otherwise, generally it's

          the grade you give yourself.

               If you have any questions on this, when I get to the groups, you

          can ask them, okay.  If you will go into your groups now and I'll give

          these out as you're in the groups.  Your question, your impression of

          Velikovsky.  That's what you are discussing.  If you are not ready to

          do it, then please write it up and get it to me within the next two


                                    (group discussion)

               If you're done, I'll take the chairman sheets.