Decoding Maori Cosmology

The Ancient Origins of New Zealand’s Indigenous Culture

Decoding Maori Cosmology

An exploration of New Zealand’s Maori cosmology and how it relates to classic ancient symbolic traditions around the world • Shows how Maori myths, symbols, cosmological concepts, and words reflect symbolic elements found at Göbekli Tepe in Turkey • Demonstrates parallels between the Maori cosmological tradition and those of ancient Egypt, China, India, Scotland, and the Dogon of Mali in Africa • Explores the pygmy tradition associated with Maori cosmology, which shares elements of the Little People mythology of Ireland, including matching mound structures and common folk traditions It is generally accepted that the Maori people arrived in New Zealand quite recently, sometime after 1200 AD. However, new evidence suggests that their culture is most likely centuries older with roots that can be traced back to the archaic Göbekli Tepe site in Turkey, built around 10,000 BC. Extending his global cosmology comparisons to New Zealand, Laird Scranton shows how the same cosmological concepts and linguistic roots that began at Göbekli Tepe are also evident in Maori culture and language. These are the same elements that underlie Dogon, ancient Egyptian, and ancient Chinese cosmologies as well as the Sakti Cult of India (a precursor to Vedic, Buddhist, and Hindu traditions) and the Neolithic culture of Orkney Island in northern Scotland. While the cultural and linguistic roots of the Maori are distinctly Polynesian, the author shows how the cosmology in New Zealand was sheltered from outside influences and likely reflects ancient sources better than other Polynesian cultures. In addition to shared creation concepts, he details a multitude of strikingly similar word pronunciations and meanings, shared by Maori language and the Dogon and Egyptian languages, as well as likely connections to various Biblical terms and traditions. He discusses the Maori use of standing stones to denote spiritual spaces and sanctuaries and how their esoteric mystery schools are housed in structures architecturally similar to those commonly found in Ireland. He discusses the symbolism of the Seven Mythic Canoes of the Maori and uncovers symbolic aspects of the elephant-headed Hindu god Ganesha in Maori cosmology. The author also explores the outwardly similar pygmy traditions of Ireland and New Zealand, characterized by matching fairy mound constructions and mythic references in both regions. He reveals how the trail of a group of Little People who vanished from Orkney Island in ancient times might be traced first to Scotland, Ireland, and England and then on to New Zealand, accompanied by signature elements of the global cosmology first seen at Gobekli Tepe.

Seeking the Primordial

Exploring Root Concepts of Cosmological Creation

Seeking the Primordial

Einstein believed that matter must arise from a simple set of physical dynamics. So did many of the classic ancient creation traditions, such as the Buddhist and Hindu traditions in India, the Kabbalist tradition of Judaism, and the Dogon and Egyptian creation traditions of Africa. Priests of the modern-day Dogon tribe of Mali point to a set of primordial processes of matter that go well beyond what modern popularizers of physics typically discuss. Techniques of comparative cosmology help us to align those processes with likely scientific counterparts, based on a consensus of ancient views. What's revealed are new and compelling perspectives on how our universe is said to interact with a non-material twin universe, how the dimensions of time and space are understood to emerge from non-materiality, and how these seemingly scientific archaic concepts formed an enduring foundation for ancient and modern religion. This book is the most recent in a series of comparative studies of ancient cosmology and language by independent researcher, Laird Scranton.

Continuing the Journey to Reposition Culture and Cultural Context in Evaluation Theory and Practice

Continuing the Journey to Reposition Culture and Cultural Context in Evaluation Theory and Practice

Racial, ethnic, linguistic, and cultural diversity has become of global importance in places where many never would have imagined. Increasing diversity in the U.S., Europe, Africa, New Zealand, and Asia strongly suggests that a homogeneitybased focus is rapidly becoming an historical artifact. Therefore, culturally responsive evaluation (CRE) should no longer be viewed as a luxury or an option in our work as evaluators. The continued amplification of racial, ethnic, linguistic, and cultural diversity and awareness among the populations of the U.S. and other western nations insists that social science researchers and evaluators inextricably engage culturally responsive approaches in their work. It is unacceptable for most mainstream university evaluation programs, philanthropic agencies, training institutes sponsored by federal agencies, professional associations, and other entities to promote professional evaluation practices that do not attend to CRE. Our global demographics are a reality that can be appropriately described and studied within the context of complexity theory and theory of change (e.g., Stewart, 1991; Battram, 1999). And this perspective requires a distinct shift from “simple” linear causeeffect models and reductionist thinking to include more holistic and culturally responsive approaches. The development of policy that is meaningfully responsive to the needs of traditionally disenfranchised stakeholders and that also optimizes the use of limited resources (human, natural, and financial) is an extremely complex process. Fortunately, we are presently witnessing developments in methods, instruments, and statistical techniques that are mixed methods in their paradigm/designs and likely to be more effective in informing policymaking and decisionmaking. Culturally responsive evaluation is one such phenomenon that positions itself to be relevant in the context of dynamic international and national settings where policy and program decisions take place. One example of a response to address this dynamic and need is the newly established Center for Culturally Responsive Evaluation and Assessment (CREA) in the College of Education at the University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign. CREA is an outgrowth of the collective work and commitments of a global community of scholars and practitioners who have contributed chapters to this edited volume. It is an international and interdisciplinary evaluation center that is grounded in the need for designing and conducting evaluations and assessments that embody cognitive, cultural, and interdisciplinary diversity so as to be actively responsive to culturally diverse communities and their aspirations. The Center’s purpose is to address questions, issues, theories, and practices related to CRE and culturally responsive educational assessment. Therefore, CREA can serve as a vehicle for our continuing discourse on culture and cultural context in evaluation and also as a point of dissemination for not only the work that is included in this edited volume, but for the subsequent work it will encourage.

Symmetries of Culture

Theory and Practice of Plane Pattern Analysis

Symmetries of Culture

Winner of the George Wittenborn Award

The Science of the Dogon

Decoding the African Mystery Tradition

The Science of the Dogon

A look at the close resemblance between the creation and structure of matter in both Dogon mythology and modern science • Reveals striking similarities between Dogon symbols and those used in both the Egyptian and Hebrew religions • Demonstrates the parallels between Dogon mythical narratives and scientific concepts from atomic theory to quantum theory and string theory The Dogon people of Mali, West Africa, are famous for their unique art and advanced cosmology. The Dogon’s creation story describes how the one true god, Amma, created all the matter of the universe. Interestingly, the myths that depict his creative efforts bear a striking resemblance to the modern scientific definitions of matter, beginning with the atom and continuing all the way to the vibrating threads of string theory. Furthermore, many of the Dogon words, symbols, and rituals used to describe the structure of matter are quite similar to those found in the myths of ancient Egypt and in the daily rituals of Judaism. For example, the modern scientific depiction of the informed universe as a black hole is identical to Amma’s Egg of the Dogon and the Egyptian Benben Stone. The Science of the Dogon offers a case-by-case comparison of Dogon descriptions and drawings to corresponding scientific definitions and diagrams from authors like Stephen Hawking and Brian Greene, then extends this analysis to the counterparts of these symbols in both the ancient Egyptian and Hebrew religions. What is ultimately revealed is the scientific basis for the language of the Egyptian hieroglyphs, which was deliberately encoded to prevent the knowledge of these concepts from falling into the hands of all but the highest members of the Egyptian priesthood. The Science of the Dogon also offers compelling new interpretations for many of the most familiar Egyptian symbols, such as the pyramid and the scarab, and presents new explanations for the origins of religiously charged words such as Jehovah and Satan.

Primal Wisdom of the Ancients

The Cosmological Plan for Humanity

Primal Wisdom of the Ancients

Examines how the similarities of symbols and wisdom across many cultures point to an ancient civilizing plan and system of ancient instruction • Reveals the shared cosmological knowledge of Dogon and Maori cultures, ancient Egypt, Gobekli Tepe, Vedic India, the pre-Indian Sakti civilization, Buddhism, the Tibetan Bon religion, and the kabbalistic tradition of the Hebrews • Explores symbols and techniques used to frame and preserve instructed knowledge as it was transmitted orally from generation to generation • Explains how this shared ancient knowledge relates to the precessional year and the cycles of time known as the yugas Exploring the mystery of why so many ancient cultures, separated by time and distance, share remarkably similar cosmological philosophies and religious symbolism, Laird Scranton reveals how this shared creation tradition upholds the idea that ancient instruction gave birth to the great civilizations, each of which preserves fragments of the original knowledge. Looking at the many manifestations of this shared cosmological knowledge, including in the Dogon and Maori cultures and in ancient Egypt, Gobekli Tepe, Vedic India, Buddhism, the Tibetan Bon religion, and the kabbalistic tradition of the Hebrews, Scranton explores the thought processes that went into formulating the archetype themes and metaphors of the ancient symbolic system. He examines how commonly shared principles of creational science are reflected in key terms of the ancient languages. He discusses how the primal cosmology also transmitted key components of sacred science, such as sacred geometry, knowledge of material creation, and the nature of a nonmaterial universe--evidence for which lies in the orientation of ancient temples, the drama of initiations and rituals, and countless traditional myths. He analyzes how this shared knowledge relates to the precessional year and the cycles of time known as the yugas. He also explores evidence of the concept of a nonmaterial twin universe to our own--the “above” to our “below” in the famous alchemical and hermetic maxim. Through his extensive research into the interconnected wisdom of the ancients, Scranton shows that the forgotten instructional tradition at the source of this knowledge was deliberately encoded to survive for countless generations. By piecing it back together, we can discover the ancient plan for guiding humanity forward toward greater enlightenment.

Final Approaches

A Memoir

Final Approaches

His unerring eye for the comic and the absurd is matched always by his insight and good judgement so that we gain an extraordinary view of New Zealand's changing place in the world over three decades while being always gripped and entertained."--BOOK JACKET.