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The wisdom of Egypt

 
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isisinacrisis
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Joined: 17 Jan 2004
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2004 5:24 pm    Post subject: The wisdom of Egypt Reply with quote

What do you think of this theory: I've read somewhere that a lot of the rational, scientfic, philosophical etc ideas that we usually associate with the Greeks actually came from ancient Egypt originally, and a lot of religious ideas normally linked with Christianity/Judaism also originated there. I saw this on a news site, once I find the article again I'll post the link here for all to see.
However, I do lurk at some other Egyptian message boards (which i haven't joined because the debates in those places tend to get really fiery!), and the academics there seem to look down on the Egyptians and don't think of them that highly in regards to how they have influenced modern day thinking, saying that they were, in a way, too primitive to think as logically/philosophically as the greeks did. (I've already discussed the probable religious connections here on several other threads.)
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anneke
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2004 5:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought a lot of the great Greeks, like Pythagoras, Euclid etc, studied and or taught in Egypt. They were associated with the library of Alexandria.
I would be somewhat surprised if they were not influenced by Egyptian culture.

Aristotle, Plato etc are of course Greek thinkers (and of an earlier time that the ones mentioned above), but usually when there is an intellectual development, it is because of an exchange of ideas between many different people. New ideas usually don't spring out of a vacuum. They had to pick up the seeds for their ideas somewhere. True, by the time they were done with formulating their ideas it may not bear much resemplance to the first inputs, but I would expect them to have been influenced by the great civilizations of their time, and at that time Egypt was one of them.
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isisinacrisis
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2004 6:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I never knew Pythagoras studied in Egypt...that would probably explain why I saw someone claim, in a book, that his famous theorem and the 3-4-5 triangle were Egyptian inventions...
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anneke
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2004 7:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did read somewhere that the Egyptians knew about the 3-4-5 triangle. It's an easy way to create a right angle, and they would have needed that I think in their building projects.
I think the Babylonians also knew about that triangle.
I don't know if they knew the 5-12-13 triangle. Probably...

Pythagoras had a whole strange sect associated with him. Did you know he was a vegetarian? He also had someone executed for talking about one of the secrets they held dear.

There's also some strange story about when they discovered the properties of radicals (square root of 2 for instance), they didn't want to share that knowledge with the world. Thought something horrible would happen if they did. At least, that's how the story is told now...

Weren't a lot of Egyptian sects very secretive as well?
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anneke
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2004 7:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just to clarify: I was not trying to imply that vegetarians belong to a weird sect. Laughing Laughing

That's just one of those posts, that when you read it back you see that the statement could easily be taken the wrong way.

Just a case of my brain jumping from one topic to another...
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isisinacrisis
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2004 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Apparently he killed someone in his sect because he said the root of 2 was irrational and Pythagoras didn't believe in irrational numbers, or something...
ps I'm a veggie too lol Laughing
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