2443 after Huangdi. The Chinese invent Tsu-Chu (kick ball). At the same time the Chinese discover an ancient mechanical puppet theater while Europeans listen to a precursor of a pipe organ.
BY HANS SOL
-for young minds
I looked up what ‘soccer’ is in Chinese. I love the little microphone that lets you hear it. It sounds like ‘suits all’. One size suits all. Shirts that come out of a bag before a game. Everybody looks good in a soccer shirt. I learned to use mnemonics aggressively by playing around with ‘memrise’.
I figured ‘soccer’ was a smart word to choose, since for some reason, I’m currently obsessed with it. If the original word is strengthened often, does that mean that the foreign word benefits from that as well?
I’ve decided to pick the first words I will learn carefully this time, to form an optimal network. Also I’m going to learn only by ear, not by sight. If the idea of learning a language the way children learn appeals to you at all, you should stick to learning by ear.
So I figured soccer wasn’t an optimal subject network-wise. To make it clearer, I’m also interested in Kung Fu. It makes more sense to learn ‘stance’ than to learn ‘goal’, since Kung Fu is more strongly connected to China and Chinese than soccer.
Which somehow got me thinking, what do I want to use the language for? And why am I learning it? Bragging rights? Curiosity, what would this word sound like, and would I be able to pronounce and remember it?
Then I imagined I could speak and write Chinese fluently. I felt I couldn’t do anything more than I can do now...What if I was fluent in Chinese, Arabic and Russian? Still nothing.
Why am I interested in China? Of course it’s influence in the world is clearly growing. It has a thriving economy. I saw a video of a famous investor who moved there and always advises everyone to move to China.
Maybe learning the Chinese language is the next best thing to moving there.
And then it suddenly dawned on me, and I really feel I made significant progress in my language learning, even though I hadn’t learned any extra words besides ‘zzuits all’ (in a very cheerful manner).
I thought about writing articles for the Zeitgeist Movement page, what about the people in Russia, the middle east and China. A voice said ‘they’ll just have to learn English’.
It’s pure habit. And when you really think about it, it’s an arrogant one. Half the world currently lives in or in one of the countries around China (have you seen the image?). What if one day they stop learning English? Then I lose half the audience for the articles I’m going to write! What if in the near future three quarters of the world population live there?
I’m going to take it slow with my languages, that’s another thing I learned, especially in the beginning, just one word now and then, try to follow your instincts. Meanwhile I’m going to post this here to get you guys thinking about this subject. It suits the Zeitgeist Movement well (I have posted it here in stead).
(August 5, 2014)
(August 5, 2014)