>>Language actually is the most efficient of
these "death barrier crossers". However,
language need not be _spoken_, it can
be gestures, i.e. sign language. Or it
could be a form of "written", but non-
alphabetical language, as in abstract use
 of material objects as the symbolic
elements, tokens. Anyway, my hypothesis
suggest spoken or sign language had to
be very early at the origin of our
species, because, story tellikng would
be the most effective death barrier

Well have already had the discussion about language being both
arbitrary and motivated, with motivation often stemming from how
interconnected 'speaking' a language is with our bodies and our
gestures. I would suppose in the oral tradition stories crossed
individuals, generations and the death barrier because they were
enacted and remembered and then enacted again. And enactment might
include verbal explanation in narrative form, drawings in the dirt,
dance, chanting and song--and cave paintings.

I wonder how much practical knowledge survives because we have
supplemented our abilities with literacy. But on the other hand, how
literacy (and now literacy on computers) means the death of oral
traditions (certainly ones that go beyond families into a tribal or
nation level).

Also, do you think  other animals have an ability to use language
across generations? It has been noted how groups of animals within a
species will display their own 'culture'.


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