"Pre-Mythic Symbols and Archetypes" - Biomimicry and the Hunters and Gatherers - Lecture Outline by Willi Paul, Planetshifter.com Media
"Pre-Mythic Symbols and Archetypes" - Biomimicry and the Hunters and Gatherers - Lecture Outline by Willi Paul, Planetshifter.com Media


• Prelude
• Introduction
• Foundation Data
• Pre-Mythic Symbols of Hunter Gatherers with a Biomimicry Lens
• Implications for the Past, Present and Beyond

Resources -

• "Burnt Eagle Clan" - New Myth #75 by Willi Paul
• Emerging Archetypes of Hunter-Gatherers (at the unconscious - conscious border)
• 12 Elements of Modern Myths
• Planetshifter.com Articles
• Study Questions

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Prelude -

Willi Paul - "I am interested in "pre-mythic time," so to speak. Sounds must have played a role in hunters and gatherers symbology and signals and stories? Why can't we imagine this epoch and active dream?"

Helen Beers - "Ah, I agree that sound must have played its part - it is fundamental to shamanism, isn't it? Rhythm, pattern and vibration all underlie life and so, from the beginning, these have to have been central. I think it might be possible to access information about our past through active dreaming and imagination since these come out of the body and that is a living record of our genetic journey. I think it would be fun to try. Only thing is it's gonna be hard to untangle what is genetic memory and what results from current context." - LinkedIn Discussion - Jungian (Analytical) Psychology Group, 2015)

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Introduction -

"Humans are Hunter and Gatherers again!" With or without our finger powered devices, hybrid cars and nuclear centrifuges, we are all seeking honest data, non-toxic farm land, spiritual connections and global peace. With all of its scientific rationales, biomimicry brings art, a pattern language and spirit to our understanding of symbols in Nature.

Pre-myth - and modern symbols - are assessable and enhanced by biomimicry. What are the linkages between pre-mythic symbols, primitive archetypes and emerging archetypes? Have Nature-inspired symbols and archetypes played a role in the development of higher human consciousness?

Finally, enjoy "Burnt Eagle Clan" - New Myth #75 and grapple and investigate the following thesis. Image what the days and nights were like in the remote hunting shelters of Hunter and Gatherers?

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Foundation Data -

The hunter-gatherer people of 10,000 BC used stone, wood, bone and antlers for their weapons and implements. Some groups practiced primitive mining, or more strictly quarrying, for flint, digging shallow pits and trenches .- a man might live all his life without meeting anyone from another group or tribe. This meant that ideas and techniques spread very slowly, taking lifetimes to travel long distances. This was a world where change was imperceptible. But this did not mean that it was not taking place.

After the appearance of farming it was only gradually that hunter-gatherers were absorbed into, or eliminated by, the encroachment of agriculture. A few hunter gatherer peoples survive to this day, but the world of the hunter gatherers, in which most ancient people followed this mode of life, is long gone, disappearing in the millennia following 10,000 BC.

Biomimicry is the imitation of the models, systems, and elements of nature for the purpose of solving complex human problems. Living organisms have evolved well-adapted structures and materials over geological time through natural selection. Biomimicry has given rise to new technologies inspired by biological solutions at macro and nanoscales. Humans have looked at nature for answers to problems throughout our existence. Nature has solved engineering problems such as self-healing abilities, environmental exposure tolerance and resistance, hydrophobicity, self-assembly, and harnessing solar energy.

"Myths have been used to transmit oral history, natural phenomenon, to tell of important people--they are based on fact and are as important and valid as any "history" we fill our libraries with today. They are at once common and uncommon, natural and supernatural."]

Artifact - The Artifact is a Nature-Human combination; examples include graffiti, a bill board, historic sculpture, and a permaculture garden, with special powers and messages to the neighborhood.

Mythos - The pattern of basic values and attitudes of a people characteristically transmitted through myths and the arts.

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Pre-Mythic Symbols of Hunter and Gatherers with a Biomimicry Lens (see illustration) -

Feather -
Ornamentation; Value Exchange; Story Prop; Signaling

Fur -
Shelter; Clothing

Animal Horns -
Story Telling; Supernatural

Lightning-based Fire -
Fear; Evidence or a Higher Power; Heat and Cooking Source

Mud -
Body Painting; Sun Burn Help

River Pebbles -
Counting System; Path Marking

Pine Pitch -
Fire Starter; Binder for Roofs

Seed Ponds -
Utensils; Ship Making (Dug-out Canoe); Pattern Making

Sun -
Moon; Round; Heat; Cycle of Day and Night; Seasons

Fire Circle -
Community Gatherings; Cooking, Defense, Light

Smoke Signals -
Warning System; Early Language Development

Tree Boughs -
Lean-to Roofs and Bedding; Camouflage

Charcoal -
Death and Rebirth; Camouflage

Wood Log Bridge -
Journey Making; Return; Clan Connector

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Implications for the Past, Present and Beyond -

Biomimicry taps into multi-layers of our "spirit / tech DNA", and can provide insights into how early humans lived and evolved. Biomimicry not only works with Nature symbols and processes but can also support emerging symbolic languages and culture building.

Hunting and gathering was an evolutionary strategy and an active influence of the rise of pre-myth archetypes around 10,000 B.C.

Primitive symbols of the land, animals and the sacred helped power the evolution of human beings.

Biomimicry, as a cultural and evolutionary change agent, is one the earliest examples of eco-alchemy.

As to my assertion that there was a "Pre-Myth" period, more debate us welcome. It would seem logical that early symbols and their emerging archetypes helped the Hunters and Gatherers elevate simple survival technologies, Nature forces and fire circle chants to what Campbell came to label: "The Power of Myth."

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Resources -

[ 1 ] "Burnt Eagle Clan" - New Myth #75

[ 2 ] Emerging Archetypes of Hunter-Gatherers
At the unconscious - conscious border

Seasonal Travel -
Primary connection to Nature as geo-emotional map; initiation migration (smells, tastes, temperature); Seasons as Spiritual Guide

Nomadic as Unquestioned Reality -
The "way of life" or Zen. Never staying in one place but having a network of places per season

Multiple, strategic located camping huts for the cyclical hunting and gathering season -
Abandon and occupy, repair abandon and occupy

Fear of cold and starvation -
Getting basic needs met as major uncertainty; Nature as boom or bust

Love Hate relationship with fire -
Must keep the Clan warm; can't carry it; hunt and gather fire like all things

Language developed thru multiple primitive channels -
Smoke signals, voice (baby cries, direction calls, pain); charcoal and blood drawings

Loneliness is not part of psyche -
If you don't know what loneliness is then you can't get lonely

Horizon is end - and the start - of the world -
Foraging for food, security and shelter

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[ 3 ] 12 Elements of Modern Myths (W. Paul) -

1. Para-normal
2. Universal struggle
3. Journey, Initiation, Community as Hero
4. Symbols
5. Alchemy
6. Nature is Sacred
7. Threat of apocalypse
8. Digital - Non-Digital Collision
9. Future/ Sci Fi-based
10. Permaculture and Transition
11. New ritual and tradition
12. Rewilding

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[ 4 ] Planetshifter.com Articles -

Eco-mystical - Biomimicry - Permaculture? Audio Cast on YouTube Interview with Dayna Baumeister, Ph.D. by Willi Paul

WILDpermaculture - Mixing ReWilding and Permaculture with Symbols. Lesson Plan by Willi Paul

Permaculture Symbols 2. A Video for Kids with Eyes of Steel and Overflowing Feet!

Nature Points a Gun at Our Heads - Drought Archetypes and Symbols

The New Sacrifice - Visions for New Mythology, Permaculture and the Transition Movement

Building a new sound symbol library for global community storytelling. Videos (3) + Lesson Planning + PDF

Examining the Sharing Vision in the Transition Movement - Values > Customs > Initiations > Traditions > New Mythology ("the Sequence")

Permaculture, Carl Jung and the New Archetypes (+ PDF)

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[ 5 ] Study Questions -

How do we determine what is useful - or sacred - for Nature?

Can we consider biomimicry as reverse anthropomorphism (Anthropomorphism is the attribution of human traits, emotions, and intentions to non-human entities)?

Can we reverse engineer biomimicry? How?

How can we utilize biomimicry and the Hunter Gatherers symbols to create new songs, poems and myths for the Post-Chaos Age?

Do the 12 Elements of Modern Myths support the hunter and gatherers' storytelling?

Did Hunters and Gatherers practice ReWilding - or did they invent it?