Sunday September 10th 2017Tim
History can be thought of as a series of possible
explanations arranged around a list of dates. Generally
speaking you and I cleave to the explanation we find
most therapeutic and happy making. And it's the same
with something like the science of climate change or
whether Moles can be trapped or whether the current
president of the United States has all his marbles.
Naturally, History as a therapeutic device, has Grocery
Store type feel good flexibilities that depend upon the
vagaries of mood and daytime temperatures. Yes indeed,
it's a long way from something like electric shock
therapy, or having your arm chopped off if you don't buy
a loaf of bread. Both of which are therapies much better
designed to boot a person into a more grounded sense of
Recently I have
found it therapeutic to ponder the origins of the names
given to countries. Canada, for example, has several
possible origins for its name found in rough and ready
translations of the aboriginal languages by French, English,
Venetian, Spanish and Portuguese explorers and fishermen.
"The Land of Villages" is one possible misunderstanding of
something that sounded like Canada. "I don't know" or
"without a plan" is yet another possible misunderstanding.
Kenya, is named after a mountain, which once had snow caps
and eleven glaciers, and which in most regional languages
has a name that sounds kind of like Keen-ya, or kin-ya but
variously translates to the English as "The Mountain
of Whiteness" or "God's Resting Place" and there are
probably many others.