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Old 10th June 2023, 10:32 AM   #361
Myriad
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
You don't, but many do.

You see, the colonists spent 150 years replacing Maori culture with their own, and now that Maori are pushing back they don't like it at all. Suddenly they are faced with the possibility that they might have to learn a few words of a 'foreign' language, and accept that their worldview might not be the only one with some merit.

It's perfectly understandable for people to struggle with this, especially the older ones. At 65 years old I feel it myself. I have also seen firsthand how difficult it was for people from eg. Germany and China to learn the language and culture of an English-speaking country, and I don't think any less of them for failing.

However I think it is quite ironic how the colonists look down on indigenous people who had difficulty assimilating, then howl in protest when asked to do a little of it themselves. The irony is that they still don't appreciate what it was like for Maori in that position.

The general attitude of white New Zealanders is that Maori culture is objectively inferior, so they are doing them a favor by replacing it with their own (that's the culture that led to two world wars and the Atom bomb, and is currently in the process of destroying the World's ecology). And if Maori don't thrive under white culture that just proves they are inferior - which is not at all racist mind you...

Whitey is framing this issue they call 'Maori Creationism in Science' as purely a matter of facts and logic vs primitive superstition, when in reality it is more about asserting cultural dominance. Of course they deny it - while throwing out accusations of cannibalism, drug dependency, inherent lawlessness and general inferiority to 'prove' their point. Because without the guidance of white culture, Maori would devolve into the primitive savagery that is their true nature.

That's as may be, I'm not going to argue against it, but it's kind of perpendicular to the gist of what I was saying (and, if I understand correctly, part of what dann is saying too). Which is that there are reasons to teach (and culturally appropriate, that is to say, apply) these "Maori" environmental concepts. Reasons that have nothing to do with being kind to the Maori or redressing past or present wrongs that may or may not have been done to the Maori or even whether the concepts themselves are genuinely original Maori.

It might be preferable, given the context, to describe mana and mauri without using the word "energy," which as far as I can tell is an inexact translation anyhow. Energy has a precise meaning in science. Sure, it's also used casually to describe things that aren't energy. If I tell my doctor I have low energy, he doesn't try to quantify it in joules. But it would be better not to take a chance anyone will end up thinking a hydroelectric dam turns a river's mana directly into kilowatt-hours. Maybe figuratively, but not literally.
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Old 10th June 2023, 01:05 PM   #362
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
Yes, it's racist. Their situations were not at all alike, but even if they were you are still accusing Maori of having some inherent flaw that makes them inferior. That you can't see how racist this is is telling.
Still no response.

Thanks for the confirmation.

Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
... these "Maori" environmental concepts...
That's the biggest fallacy of them all - Maori had no concept of environment, or protecting it, which is why moa were hunted to extinction for food and huia for their feathers, and why they burned off most of the bush.
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Old 10th June 2023, 03:14 PM   #363
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
That's the biggest fallacy of them all - Maori had no concept of environment, or protecting it, which is why moa were hunted to extinction for food and huia for their feathers, and why they burned off most of the bush.

Yeeeaaaaah, listen, I need you to appreciate how "your culture screwed up in the past so it's got nothing of value now" is the very same argument people are making against science when they bring up thalidomide or Hiroshima or "they rejected the evidence for plate tectonics for 50 years." If you could recognize the irony, that'd be greeeeeat.
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Old 10th June 2023, 03:40 PM   #364
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
The general attitude of white New Zealanders is that Maori culture is objectively inferior, so they are doing them a favor by replacing it with their own (that's the culture that led to two world wars and the Atom bomb, and is currently in the process of destroying the World's ecology). And if Maori don't thrive under white culture that just proves they are inferior - which is not at all racist mind you...
Please educate us dumb, racist Whitey . . .

If you claim Neolithic Maori Culture was superior to, or even as good as, Whitey culture 180 odd years ago, or even that Maori culture has been superior to Whitey culture any time since, please provide evidence that this claim is actually, factually true.

Don’t provide oral myths, mere claims, feelings, suspicions, or beliefs . . . actual evidence please.
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Old 10th June 2023, 03:47 PM   #365
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
That's the biggest fallacy of them all - Maori had no concept of environment, or protecting it, which is why moa were hunted to extinction for food and huia for their feathers, and why they burned off most of the bush.
Damn those darn pesky facts . . .
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Old 10th June 2023, 03:53 PM   #366
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
Yeeeaaaaah, listen, I need you to appreciate how "your culture screwed up in the past so it's got nothing of value now" is the very same argument people are making against science when they bring up thalidomide or Hiroshima or "they rejected the evidence for plate tectonics for 50 years." If you could recognize the irony, that'd be greeeeeat.
Feel free to Educate Whitey.

Provide factual proof that Maori actually had these claimed "Maori environmental concepts".
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Last edited by ynot; 10th June 2023 at 03:58 PM.
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Old 10th June 2023, 06:51 PM   #367
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
Yeeeaaaaah, listen, I need you to appreciate how "your culture screwed up in the past so it's got nothing of value now" is the very same argument people are making against science when they bring up thalidomide or Hiroshima or "they rejected the evidence for plate tectonics for 50 years." If you could recognize the irony, that'd be greeeeeat.
Since you're what we call a good bastard down here, I'll explain where I am.

I have no problem with Maori culture. I'm very happy to have compulsory Maori as a school subject, and I'd be 100% comfortable with NZ adopting the Canadian model and becoming truly bilingual, with every statement in both languages.

In those Maori classes, I'd love to see Maori mythology taught. Our kids learn about Norse and Greek myths, and neither of those are relevant to us at all, so Maori (and Pasifika) mythology would be appropriate. Some of them contain the same type of wisdom as Aesop or Homer, and kids in NZ learning that would be ideal.

What I will not tolerate is lies and myth being taught in science and history classes. Science and history deal in facts, and it's factual that most Maori killed in the Land Wars were killed by Maori. It's equally factual that Maori myths teach nothing about science.
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Old 10th June 2023, 06:53 PM   #368
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Originally Posted by ynot View Post
Damn those darn pesky facts . . .
The one that really grates on me is the huia.

Eating moa to extinction is bad, but understandable.

Killing off a species because it has pretty feathers is criminal.
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Old 10th June 2023, 07:40 PM   #369
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Originally Posted by lionking View Post
Mind reader, are you? He didn’t say he wasn’t talking about the past. Read it again.

No, I'm not a mindreader. Read it again. It's called the present tense:
Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
You make it sound they were captured and brought here on slave ships, when in reality they are seasonal workers or immigrants who came here willingly like the European settlers did (many of whom were also exploited).
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Old 10th June 2023, 08:02 PM   #370
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
No, I'm not a mindreader. Read it again. It's called the present tense:
I can’t help it if Roger Ramjets gets his tenses wrong. He said “You make it sound they were captured and brought here on slave ships”. They were, as I demonstrated.
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Old 10th June 2023, 08:34 PM   #371
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Originally Posted by lionking View Post
I can’t help it if Roger Ramjets gets his tenses wrong. He said “You make it sound they were captured and brought here on slave ships”. They were, as I demonstrated.
Don't just take my word for it, they're still demonstrably being treated as slaves in many cases.

This is a report by the Human Rights Commission.

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What’s become quite clear is that due to a lack of oversight, regulation, enforcement, and human rights protections within the RSE scheme, employers are able to exploit workers with few consequences if they wish.
More details here, here and here.

Just more examples of people with zero knowledge of NZ painting a picture that bears no relationship to reality. It's still bloody funny, though - guys 10,000 km away read a few pieces of nonsense and think they know something.

Duh.
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Old 10th June 2023, 08:46 PM   #372
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Originally Posted by Paul2 View Post
I see no reason why a science textbook should be asking a question about how Thor caused thunder and lightning without making it explicit that Thor causing thunder and lightning is not scientific, or has been rejected as an explanation, etc.

I see a very good reason why it shouldn't make it explicit that Thor doesn't cause thunderbolts and lightning, very, very frightening. Why talk down to the students?
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Thor havde magt over vejret. Han sørgede for regn og vind, og når han kørte over himlen sprang lynene fra hans vogn, så det tordnede på Jorden; det kaldtes Thor-drøn (torden). Derfor var han også en vigtig gud for de søfarende og frugtbarhed.
Thor (Wikipedia)
Translation: Thor controlled the weather. He brought rain and wind, and when he was driving across the sky, lightning leaped from his chariot and caused thunder on Earth; it was called Thor-drøn (thunder). That is why he was also an important god for seafarers and fertility.

There is no need whatsoever to make "it explicit that Thor causing thunder and lightning is not scientific, or has been rejected as an explanation, etc." because nobody, nobody at all, believes that Thor is real, that his chariot is real, that his goats are real, or that thunder is caused by any of those imaginary things. Everybody knows that thunder is the sound of lightning, and that lightning is a natural phenomenon, an emanation of static electricity, and since the story about Thor is an introduction to a whole book that will explain this in detail, there is no reason why it should be made even more "explicit that Thor causing thunder and lightning is not scientific, or has been rejected as an explanation, etc."

And the same thing goes for the story about Ranginui & Papatuanuku as the parents of all of Earth's creatures. Nobody thinks it's true. And since you yourself said that it should be seen in its context, the context is a book teaching students about adaptation, i.e evolution. There is no reason whatsoever to remind students explicitly that the Māori creation myth is a myth. (Remember the cat skull?)
The book also explains things like ecology and environment and the interaction of humans and nature.

Quote:
If you can find an example of that type of thing happening without the qualification I mention above income other science textbook, I'll reconsider my position.

Why would I want you to reconsider your position? It's pretty harmless. You could campaign for making all references to mythology in textbooks be accompanied by sentences like Thor is a fictional character in Norse mythology, and fictional characters can't be legally wed, so Thor doesn't have a wife, or, when the text says that he does, it must obviously be an imaginary wife. Not even the goats pulling his cart are real. In principle, goats as such are real, of course, but not these particular goats are not. They are as imaginary as Thor and his imaginary wife. And so is his chariot.
It may make students say, 'Do the authors of this book really think that we don't already know this?!', but I think they can live with it. The authors seem to think that the headline The Māori Worldview is enough to make it clear.
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Old 10th June 2023, 08:50 PM   #373
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Originally Posted by lionking View Post
I can’t help it if Roger Ramjets gets his tenses wrong.
He didn't.
Quote:
He said “You make it sound they were captured and brought here on slave ships”. They were, as I demonstrated.
You didn't.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th June 2023, 10:02 PM   #374
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
That's as may be, I'm not going to argue against it, but it's kind of perpendicular to the gist of what I was saying (and, if I understand correctly, part of what dann is saying too). Which is that there are reasons to teach (and culturally appropriate, that is to say, apply) these "Maori" environmental concepts. Reasons that have nothing to do with being kind to the Maori or redressing past or present wrongs that may or may not have been done to the Maori or even whether the concepts themselves are genuinely original Maori.

Since we are talking about a science book, and specifically about a chapter about the environment, I think it's pretty obvious why the authors of the book chose the two 'living-with-nature'-like ideas. It works well in the context, but it is no coincidence that they have chosen the Māori worldview instead of the classic 'Even the ancient Greeks ...'. So I would agree with Roger Ramjets that this is a bit woke (my word, not his), or as you put it, 'being kind to the Maori', which isn't bad, in my opinion.
The context outside of the book is New Zealand/Aotearoa, so why not? It would be absurd to refer to ancient Romans, Greeks or Scandinavians in this context.
It doesn't matter much whether the concepts are genuinely Māori or not. It would have required closer studies and a couple of quotations from Māori mythology, but since it's a book about science, there's no reason to go into any details. As I've said before, this is meant as a springboard to talking about an aspect of the science of biology and is just meant to say that 'the Māori had something somewhat similar to the scientific subjects that what we'll be talking about next'.

Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
It might be preferable, given the context, to describe mana and mauri without using the word "energy," which as far as I can tell is an inexact translation anyhow. Energy has a precise meaning in science. Sure, it's also used casually to describe things that aren't energy. If I tell my doctor I have low energy, he doesn't try to quantify it in joules. But it would be better not to take a chance anyone will end up thinking a hydroelectric dam turns a river's mana directly into kilowatt-hours. Maybe figuratively, but not literally.

Energy, power, force, whatever. I think that science is the appropriator in this case if you look at the etymology of the words, so I don't see anything wrong with using the word energy. I think all pre-science and even religious worldviews had something similar. In Afro-Cuban Santería, for instance, it's called aché:
"El ashé, también aché o asé, es un concepto básico en las religiones yoruba y afrocubanas, como la santería. Se le entiende como la energía básica del universo de lo que todo esta constituido incluidos los orishas y que mantienen el equilibrio y el orden." (Wikipedia)
So if the Yoruba had been the first culture to develop science and technology, I guess we would be talking about electrical aché and the aché grid. May the aché be with you!
I think it's clear to the users of this textbook that the meaning of the word depends on the context and that Einstein wasn't thinking of Māori energy when he came up with E = mc2.
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"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 10th June 2023, 10:11 PM   #375
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
He didn't.

You didn't.
Funny. Ignore facts. Good for you.
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Old 11th June 2023, 07:25 AM   #376
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
I see a very good reason why it shouldn't make it explicit that Thor doesn't cause thunderbolts and lightning, very, very frightening. Why talk down to the students?
For the same reason that science textbooks make it clear that the ether doesn't exist.
Originally Posted by dann View Post
Translation: Thor controlled the weather. He brought rain and wind, and when he was driving across the sky, lightning leaped from his chariot and caused thunder on Earth; it was called Thor-drøn (thunder). That is why he was also an important god for seafarers and fertility.

There is no need whatsoever to make "it explicit that Thor causing thunder and lightning is not scientific, or has been rejected as an explanation, etc." because nobody, nobody at all, believes that Thor is real, that his chariot is real, that his goats are real, or that thunder is caused by any of those imaginary things. Everybody knows that thunder is the sound of lightning, and that lightning is a natural phenomenon, an emanation of static electricity, and since the story about Thor is an introduction to a whole book that will explain this in detail, there is no reason why it should be made even more "explicit that Thor causing thunder and lightning is not scientific, or has been rejected as an explanation, etc."
Can you say no Maori student believes in the actual reality of mauri and mana? If so, then your points holds. If not, then not.
Originally Posted by dann View Post
And the same thing goes for the story about Ranginui & Papatuanuku as the parents of all of Earth's creatures. Nobody thinks it's true. And since you yourself said that it should be seen in its context, the context is a book teaching students about adaptation, i.e evolution. There is no reason whatsoever to remind students explicitly that the Māori creation myth is a myth. (Remember the cat skull?)
My *only* issue is with mana and mauri.
Originally Posted by dann View Post
The book also explains things like ecology and environment and the interaction of humans and nature.
My *only* issue is with mana and mauri.

Originally Posted by dann View Post
Why would I want you to reconsider your position? It's pretty harmless. You could campaign for making all references to mythology in textbooks be accompanied by sentences like Thor is a fictional character in Norse mythology, and fictional characters can't be legally wed, so Thor doesn't have a wife, or, when the text says that he does, it must obviously be an imaginary wife. Not even the goats pulling his cart are real. In principle, goats as such are real, of course, but not these particular goats are not. They are as imaginary as Thor and his imaginary wife. And so is his chariot.
It may make students say, 'Do the authors of this book really think that we don't already know this?!', but I think they can live with it. The authors seem to think that the headline The Māori Worldview is enough to make it clear.
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Old 11th June 2023, 07:52 AM   #377
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Originally Posted by Paul2 View Post
It doesn't have to be taken that far - calculating the life force - for it to be a potential problem, especially considering that all it would take to remove that potential problem would be a sentence like, "While mauri is part of the Maori worldview, it is not a real force and so can not be measured," much like a textbook might mention the ether but would clearly say that the Michelson-Morley experiment proved that the ether didn't exist.
I suppose one can legitimately talk in science about the boundary between technical science and the public understanding of science. About science, politics and evidence based politics. Whilst one could consider a river in terms of water flows, extraction, surface run offs, pollution levels, nitrate and particulate contents, bio diversity and estimated population of indicator species, perhaps it is not unreasonable to combine these to be a unitless but variable quantity one might call mauri (life force is clearly wrong as that would be measured in Newtons). One might say that laws and policies around rivers should protect and ideally increase their mauri. Engineering that smoothes the flow of a river combined with increased nitrate inputs reduces the mauri of a river which can be restored by engineering that increase turbulent flow and oxygenation. This would be an executive summary, the detailed scientific analysis would have numbers and models but these disparate measurements need to be combined into a more holistic concept, one that English does not have a good term for, perhaps the nearest being 'health'. So I would argue that the Maori concept of mauri might be a useful one in ecology and environmental sciences.

ETA mauri would also have an element of sociological, about peoples feelings and interactions with the river, fishing and recreation.

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Old 11th June 2023, 08:25 AM   #378
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Originally Posted by Planigale View Post
I suppose one can legitimately talk in science about the boundary between technical science and the public understanding of science. About science, politics and evidence based politics. Whilst one could consider a river in terms of water flows, extraction, surface run offs, pollution levels, nitrate and particulate contents, bio diversity and estimated population of indicator species, perhaps it is not unreasonable to combine these to be a unitless but variable quantity one might call mauri (life force is clearly wrong as that would be measured in Newtons). One might say that laws and policies around rivers should protect and ideally increase their mauri. Engineering that smoothes the flow of a river combined with increased nitrate inputs reduces the mauri of a river which can be restored by engineering that increase turbulent flow and oxygenation. This would be an executive summary, the detailed scientific analysis would have numbers and models but these disparate measurements need to be combined into a more holistic concept, one that English does not have a good term for, perhaps the nearest being 'health'. So I would argue that the Maori concept of mauri might be a useful one in ecology and environmental sciences.

ETA mauri would also have an element of sociological, about peoples feelings and interactions with the river, fishing and recreation.
Perhaps "mauri" then means something like "ecological health?" If so, then let the textbook define it that way. Being clear about what words mean is also an important thing in science.
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Old 11th June 2023, 09:23 AM   #379
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Originally Posted by Paul2 View Post
For the same reason that science textbooks make it clear that the ether doesn't exist.

I think you should take a look at the rest of this book! It makes the reality of the natural world extremely clear.

Quote:
Can you say no Maori student believes in the actual reality of mauri and mana? If so, then your points holds. If not, then not.

No Māori student at all? You are setting the bar pretty high (or is it low?), aren't you? But no, I can't say that, but I can say that if there are any, there are very few of them:
"Very few Māori still adhere to traditional Māori beliefs — 3,699 respondents to the 2018 census identified themselves as adhering to "Māori religions, beliefs and philosophies"" (See post 321).
I don't know the percentage of those 3,699 respondents who happen to be high-school students, but if the kudos to the ancestors of the Māori make Māori students more likely to study the rest of the 254 pages of the book, I think the introduction mentioning mana and mauri will have served (one of) its purpose(s).

Quote:
My *only* issue is with mana and mauri.
My *only* issue is with mana and mauri.

Why? Doesn't it concern you at all that Māori students may see their belief in Māori creationism confirmed? That we are all children of Ranganui and Papatuanuku? I'm beginning to doubt your devotion to the cause of skepticism if you'll let them get away with that one.
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Old 11th June 2023, 09:26 AM   #380
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Energy, power, force, whatever. I think that science is the appropriator in this case if you look at the etymology of the words, so I don't see anything wrong with using the word energy. I think all pre-science and even religious worldviews had something similar. In Afro-Cuban Santería, for instance, it's called aché:
"El ashé, también aché o asé, es un concepto básico en las religiones yoruba y afrocubanas, como la santería. Se le entiende como la energía básica del universo de lo que todo esta constituido incluidos los orishas y que mantienen el equilibrio y el orden." (Wikipedia)
So if the Yoruba had been the first culture to develop science and technology, I guess we would be talking about electrical aché and the aché grid. May the aché be with you!
I think it's clear to the users of this textbook that the meaning of the word depends on the context and that Einstein wasn't thinking of Māori energy when he came up with E = mc2.

Just about every culture has some word for life-stuff that relates to breath, vitality, and visualized flows, internal and external, of some sort of energetic fluid. Chi (or qi or ki), prana, spiritus, pneuma, ruach, nwyfre, The Force...

Yeah, I think it's clear enough in the example text that for mana and mauri the word "energy" is being used in a more general descriptive sense. But it's an easy target for divisive "not in my science!" arguments.

Where mana might be particularly useful in applied ecology, more so than those other terms, is that mana appears to have a more explicit intersubjective aspect relating to respect, esteem, or engagement. When I take a kayak out on a river, I could be adding to the river's mana in a way that either strictly leaving it alone, or bombing around on it on a jet-ski, wouldn't. Especially if there's some useful purpose to it (though that's hard to manage in the modern world). That's another way to start to undo the dead-end human-vs.-nature dichotomy inherent in traditional environmentalism.
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Old 11th June 2023, 09:27 AM   #381
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Originally Posted by Paul2 View Post
Perhaps "mauri" then means something like "ecological health?" If so, then let the textbook define it that way. Being clear about what words mean is also an important thing in science.

It just appears in a very short introduction to the theme! Do you seriously want them to devote even more pages to this?
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Old 11th June 2023, 09:28 AM   #382
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Originally Posted by Paul2 View Post
Perhaps "mauri" then means something like "ecological health?" If so, then let the textbook define it that way. Being clear about what words mean is also an important thing in science.

I would interpret it that way. But as I mentioned earlier, "health" is not a clearly defined or definable scientific term either.
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Old 11th June 2023, 08:24 PM   #383
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
"health" is not a clearly defined or definable scientific term either.
A large part of science is about defining things. Start by developing a formula that reduces 'ecological health' to a number, then choose some Latin words to name it and you're done! But we don't imbue our science with European culture, oh no.

What? Use a Maori word instead? What kind of woke nonsense is this? We can't have primitive religious mumbo jumbo polluting our purely rational culture-free science!
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Old 11th June 2023, 08:38 PM   #384
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
guys 10,000 km away read a few pieces of nonsense and think they know something.
39.6302° S, 176.8304° E

Do I have to spell it out?

Before this forum became 'International Skeptics' some posters insisted that the opinions of people outside the US were inherently invalid. Now we see others trying the same tactic. What does it matter where somebody is posting from? A lot to those who think ad hominem attacks are the way to boost their arguments.
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Old 12th June 2023, 03:01 AM   #385
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
39.6302° S, 176.8304° E

Do I have to spell it out?
You're welcome to try, but you'll fail.

Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
Before this forum became 'International Skeptics' some posters insisted that the opinions of people outside the US were inherently invalid. Now we see others trying the same tactic. What does it matter where somebody is posting from?
The exact analogy would be Indigenous Americans, and only a fool would attempt to speak on their behalf without in-depth and personal knowledge of their situation.

Yet there are people with no knowledge of Maori - and who almost certainly have never spoken to one - who attempt to speak on behalf of Maori.

I consider those people fools, and they confirm it with every successive post.

It makes me laugh though, so it's all good.
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Old 12th June 2023, 03:38 AM   #386
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What makes The Atheist laugh and whom he considers to be fools might be very interesting in a relevant thread. So might the reference to "people ... who attempt to speak on behalf of Maori" if such people had been present in the thread.
Too bad they aren't.
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Old 12th June 2023, 07:10 AM   #387
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
I think you should take a look at the rest of this book! It makes the reality of the natural world extremely clear.
Right. I'm looking for the same clarity on page 124.
Originally Posted by dann View Post
No Māori student at all? You are setting the bar pretty high (or is it low?), aren't you? But no, I can't say that, but I can say that if there are any, there are very few of them:
"Very few Māori still adhere to traditional Māori beliefs — 3,699 respondents to the 2018 census identified themselves as adhering to "Māori religions, beliefs and philosophies"" (See post 321).
I don't know the percentage of those 3,699 respondents who happen to be high-school students, but if the kudos to the ancestors of the Māori make Māori students more likely to study the rest of the 254 pages of the book, I think the introduction mentioning mana and mauri will have served (one of) its purpose(s).
That wasn't me setting the bar, that was me telling you where you had set the bar when you analogized (not really a verb the way I'm using it, but go with me on this) that "nobody, not nobody at all, believes that Thor is real."

And, ultimately, even if no student believed in mauri and mana in a supernatural sense, page 124 would still be a bad way to write a science textbook given that
  1. the questions at the bottom of the page are parallel to questions about non-supernatural phenomenon,
  2. it's a science textbook
  3. the words are defined like supernatural concepts than natural ones (we've seen "life force" and "energy" as woo before)
  4. it would trivial to correct things that wouldn't add to the length (define the concepts as something like ecological health, or the like)
  5. clarity is one of the essential characteristics of scientific thinking
Originally Posted by dann View Post
Why? Doesn't it concern you at all that Māori students may see their belief in Māori creationism confirmed? That we are all children of Ranganui and Papatuanuku? I'm beginning to doubt your devotion to the cause of skepticism if you'll let them get away with that one.
I'm not sure of your point here, but I was just telling you what my issue was.
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Old 12th June 2023, 07:10 AM   #388
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
It just appears in a very short introduction to the theme! Do you seriously want them to devote even more pages to this?
Nothing I said requires more pages.
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Old 12th June 2023, 07:15 AM   #389
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
I would interpret it that way. But as I mentioned earlier, "health" is not a clearly defined or definable scientific term either.
Let's not confuse a poor definition or concept with a broad definition or concept:

Quote:
Health, according to the World Health Organization, is "a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease and infirmity".
Source
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Old 12th June 2023, 11:24 PM   #390
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
And the islands! South and North. While Te Ika a Maui is a dumb name, it's a big improvement on "North".
It's similar to the creativity displayed in Australian place names, where we have the Snowy Mountains (where there is snow), Shark Bay (where there are sharks), and the Great Sandy Desert (where there is, you guessed it, sand).
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Old 13th June 2023, 12:01 AM   #391
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjets View Post
You don't, but many do.

You see, the colonists spent 150 years replacing Maori culture with their own, and now that Maori are pushing back they don't like it at all. Suddenly they are faced with the possibility that they might have to learn a few words of a 'foreign' language, and accept that their worldview might not be the only one with some merit.

It's perfectly understandable for people to struggle with this, especially the older ones. At 65 years old I feel it myself. I have also seen firsthand how difficult it was for people from eg. Germany and China to learn the language and culture of an English-speaking country, and I don't think any less of them for failing.

However I think it is quite ironic how the colonists look down on indigenous people who had difficulty assimilating, then howl in protest when asked to do a little of it themselves. The irony is that they still don't appreciate what it was like for Maori in that position.

The general attitude of white New Zealanders is that Maori culture is objectively inferior, so they are doing them a favor by replacing it with their own (that's the culture that led to two world wars and the Atom bomb, and is currently in the process of destroying the World's ecology). And if Maori don't thrive under white culture that just proves they are inferior - which is not at all racist mind you...

Whitey is framing this issue they call 'Maori Creationism in Science' as purely a matter of facts and logic vs primitive superstition, when in reality it is more about asserting cultural dominance. Of course they deny it - while throwing out accusations of cannibalism, drug dependency, inherent lawlessness and general inferiority to 'prove' their point. Because without the guidance of white culture, Maori would devolve into the primitive savagery that is their true nature.
Most Māori speak English as their first language. Only a small proportion of them speak the Māori language fluently. All this forced insertion of Māori words into English is no more than virtue signaling.

Science is independent of culture. That’s why it is so successful. There should be no culture of any sort in science lessons.
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Old 13th June 2023, 06:08 AM   #392
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post

Where mana might be particularly useful in applied ecology, more so than those other terms, is that mana appears to have a more explicit intersubjective aspect relating to respect, esteem, or engagement. When I take a kayak out on a river, I could be adding to the river's mana in a way that either strictly leaving it alone, or bombing around on it on a jet-ski, wouldn't. Especially if there's some useful purpose to it (though that's hard to manage in the modern world). That's another way to start to undo the dead-end human-vs.-nature dichotomy inherent in traditional environmentalism.
You know you just made mana out to be complete hogwash. That paragraph sounds just like the New Age woo we sometimes have to put up with here even down to the demonisation of science in the last sentence.

Science tells us how kayaks and jet-skis really interact with rivers. You don’t need superstitious nonsense to explain it.
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Old 13th June 2023, 07:28 AM   #393
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
It's similar to the creativity displayed in Australian place names, where we have the Snowy Mountains (where there is snow), Shark Bay (where there are sharks), and the Great Sandy Desert (where there is, you guessed it, sand).

You know, in Danish we have those, too. (The names, not the mountains. Denmark is on the top ten of flat countries.)
For instance the name Sukkertoppen:
Quote:
Maniitsoq betyder “ujævnt sted” på grønlandsk. Maniitsoqs danske navn var Sukkertoppen, der refererer til de snedækkede bjergtoppe, da byen var en koloni.
Maniitisoq (Visit Greenland)
Maniitsoq means "uneven place" in Greenlandic. Maniitsoq's Danish name used to be Sugartop, which refers to the snow-covered mountain tops, when the city was a colony.

There is really no sensible reason why place names in Greenland should be Danish, is there?! Except that this is what colonizers do. There isn't even any reason why Greenland should be called Greenland instead of Kalaallit Nunaat. The name may even have contributed to confusing Donald Trump enough to imagine that it would be the ideal place for another one of his golf courses.
(I was trying to link to the thread about Trump getting so offended by not being able to buy Greenland that he called off a scheduled meeting with the Danish PM, but I can't find it.)
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Old 13th June 2023, 09:20 AM   #394
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
Where mana might be particularly useful in applied ecology, more so than those other terms, is that mana appears to have a more explicit intersubjective aspect relating to respect, esteem, or engagement. When I take a kayak out on a river, I could be adding to the river's mana in a way that either strictly leaving it alone, or bombing around on it on a jet-ski, wouldn't. Especially if there's some useful purpose to it (though that's hard to manage in the modern world). That's another way to start to undo the dead-end human-vs.-nature dichotomy inherent in traditional environmentalism.
Traditional environmentalism and conservation already have the concepts of restricted activity preserves. Trails where motor vehicles are not allowed. Campgrounds that limit the kind of camping that can be done there. Etc.
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Old 13th June 2023, 04:00 PM   #395
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
I would interpret it that way. But as I mentioned earlier, "health" is not a clearly defined or definable scientific term either.
I know it when I see it.
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Old 13th June 2023, 04:32 PM   #396
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
I would interpret it that way. But as I mentioned earlier, "health" is not a clearly defined or definable scientific term either.
"I don't want cancer!" shrieks the clown-ass.

"Health is a myth", says the well informed person of the world.

Or maybe I have those two characters reversed.
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Old 13th June 2023, 04:50 PM   #397
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
Since you're what we call a good bastard down here, I'll explain where I am.

I have no problem with Maori culture. I'm very happy to have compulsory Maori as a school subject, and I'd be 100% comfortable with NZ adopting the Canadian model and becoming truly bilingual, with every statement in both languages.

In those Maori classes, I'd love to see Maori mythology taught. Our kids learn about Norse and Greek myths, and neither of those are relevant to us at all, so Maori (and Pasifika) mythology would be appropriate. Some of them contain the same type of wisdom as Aesop or Homer, and kids in NZ learning that would be ideal.

What I will not tolerate is lies and myth being taught in science and history classes. Science and history deal in facts, and it's factual that most Maori killed in the Land Wars were killed by Maori. It's equally factual that Maori myths teach nothing about science.
It is also factual that mokomokai were face tattooed heads of warriors slain in battle. That the white traders paid such good money the supply was increased by the traders selecting live warriors who were killed and face tattooed.

This will be taught in schools to make everyone revere their ancestors, or not.
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Old 13th June 2023, 05:13 PM   #398
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
There is really no sensible reason why place names in Greenland should be Danish, is there?! Except that this is what colonizers do. There isn't even any reason why Greenland should be called Greenland instead of Kalaallit Nunaat...
Indeed. All the places I named already have indigenous names, which nobody remembers. There have been a few cases where indigenous names have been officially adopted - most people know about Uluru, but the name of the place the whitefullas named Fraser Island has recently been officially changed to K'Gari.
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Old 13th June 2023, 09:04 PM   #399
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It's not that I'm unwilling to use indigenous names for places, I'd be delighted to do so, it's just that I usually can't either remember them for more than a few seconds or pronounce them during those few seconds.

I've read the new (or should that be old?) Welsh name for The Brecon Beacons several times and heard Michael Sheen helpfully explain how it's pronounced, but I currently have no idea what it is and couldn't pronounce it properly if I did.
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Old 14th June 2023, 12:01 AM   #400
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
Since you're what we call a good bastard down here, I'll explain where I am.

I have no problem with Maori culture. I'm very happy to have compulsory Maori as a school subject, and I'd be 100% comfortable with NZ adopting the Canadian model and becoming truly bilingual, with every statement in both languages.

In those Maori classes, I'd love to see Maori mythology taught. Our kids learn about Norse and Greek myths, and neither of those are relevant to us at all, so Maori (and Pasifika) mythology would be appropriate. Some of them contain the same type of wisdom as Aesop or Homer, and kids in NZ learning that would be ideal.

What I will not tolerate is lies and myth being taught in science and history classes. Science and history deal in facts, and it's factual that most Maori killed in the Land Wars were killed by Maori. It's equally factual that Maori myths teach nothing about science.
Dear Atheist:
Mostly preposterous.
Teach everyone phonetics and forget Te Reo except for scholars of pre European spoken language.
Love
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