Category Archives: With Another Person
Why did God create the world knowing that it would fall into sin? (from a private conversation, by kind permission)
Reader Jarad Mayers wrote the following very good question:
I want to learn Mandarin. I am not sure how to go about it. This is the very first language I am attempting to learn. I have not done anything yet. I am on very tight budget and currently not employed. I tried to access the free material on Mandarin (http://fsi-language-courses.org/ )but it is no longer accessible . I was wondering if I could use your experince and if possible sort of outline the steps I need to follow.
BTW, I am not sure where to post my question. I am sorry if this the wrong place for posting it.
I’ve prepared the answer as a table – it is a whole programme to 80% of Chinese that you’d need to get your degree, read newspapers, live an everyday life in China. The rest after that comes down to vocabulary building for which I’d recommend the goldlisting of dictionaries or of bilingual literature. You could spend four times as much time getting from 80% Chinese to 100% Chinese (ask Vilf “the Gilf” Pareto, he’ll tell you why, or might have done, until 1923 – now you’ll have to look up what he thought in order to know why, or simply accept it).
Real Chinese philologists like Victor Berrjod might give you other useful sources better than the ones I have listed. All of the ones I have listed are available on Amazon. The audio courses are expensive so it will pay you to shop around a bit.
Dzień dobry, Panie James!
Właśnie obejrzałem oba filmy wideo na temat Gold List i jestem pod ogromnym wrażeniem! Moje zeszyty są już gotowe do użycia, ale pojawiło mi się kilka pytań.
1. Metoda opiera się na krótkiej pamięci, która zanika po 2 tygodniach. Jak to możliwe, że potrafię zapomnieć, co przed chwilą komuś napisałem, a te słówka będę (w jakiejś części) pamiętać tak długi czas?
2. Czy jest to dopuszczalne, bym podczas zapisywania, tworzył pierwsze lepsze skojarzenia czy to już jest ta nauka, której w tej metodzie należy unikać?
3. Załóżmy, że wpiszę dzisiaj słowo. Po jakim czasie, średnio, zniknie ono człowiekowi z zeszytu? Pytam, ponieważ czeka mnie matura w tym roku i zastanawiam się, czy zdążę po prostu tą metodą się uczyć słówek.
Z góry dziękuję za odpowiedź, będę bardzo wdzięczny!
Drogi Panie Jakubie,
Oto odpowiedź na panskie trzy pytania:
1. Metoda Goldlist opiera sie na ideę, potwierzdoną praktycznym doświadczeniem już setek ludzi, że pamięć używana świadomie jest krótkofalowa, lecz istnieje też pamięć długofalowa, do której nieświadoma częsc mózgu przypisuje próbkowo wybraną część informacji, która jest mu przedstawiona.
Skoro długofalowa pamięć jest funkcją nieświadomą, nie wiemy od razu co na prawdę zostało jej przypisano, a co nie. Ale skoro krótkofalowa pamięć trwa tylko dwa tygodnia, musimy po prostu odczekać ten srok aby dowiedzieć się ex post, czego na prawdę dlugofalowo uczyliśmy się a co jednak zapomnięlismy.
Na ideach w tych zdań leży cały klucz do zrozumienia tej metody. W tym jest zawarte jej podstawa “fiziologiczna”.
Pamiętajmy jednak, że zawsze pamięc długofalowa polega na probkowaniu we własnej, nieświadomej nam gestii. Ale wielkość bądź częstotliwość tego próbkowania może być różna – jeżeli próbujemy sie uczyć na siłę, lub przez zbyteczne powtórzenia, lub bez robienia adekwatnych przerw, lub kiedy jestesmy chorzy, piani, lub przy muzyce itp, pamięć długofalowa staje się dużo mniej aktywną, i wtedy oddawa gros roboty krótkofalowej pamięci, co chcemy unikać.
2. Uczenie się przy stworzeniu na siłe tych “skojarzeń” jest typowym uczeniem się do krótkofalowej pamięci i da Panu fantastyczne wyniki poprzez 2 tygodnia, potem wielką porażkę i demotywację. Dlatego często metody opierające na tę funkcje skojarzeń oferują pieniedzy spowrotem w ciągu 16 dni, a potem nie. Oni z doświadczenia dobrze wiedzą, że nie dzialają ich metody po dwóch tygodni, ale i tak sprzedają je! Ale proszę zauważyć, ze jest wiele osób które wygrywają na konkursach pamięci, którzy jednak nie znajdują się w gronie prawdziwych poliglotów. Read the rest of this entry
One of the followers of the video content on YouTube, Dennis, wrote asking about the question of aspects. I answered as I could and also as you will see got his permission to share the conversation so that more language learners would be able to take advantage of the topic.
Conversation started Thursday
Thank you so much of the add. I’m honored!
I’m a very big fan of your youtube videos concerning the Russian language. I use them in addition of my Russian language course and I ust say that they give me a headstart of the rest. So they really help!
I was wondering however if you could tell me which video talks about the time aspect ( поличать vs поличить) if you know what I mean with that. We talked about it yesterday in class and most people (including myself) find it very difficult.
I hope you can help me out with this one.
Thank you so much in advance!
Dennis Meurders Read the rest of this entry
On my recent post explaining the expression from the lips of Jesus Christ “ye are gods”, a comment has appeared from an anonymous reader called identifying himself or herself as A.K. saying that I am wrong in my take and that the Mormon view (which I actually did mention in my article but discounted it in passing without going into much detail) is correct. I wanted to highlight this correspondence so I have made a main article for this blog from it in the hope that more people will be reached and brought to an understanding of what Mormonism really is, who it belongs to and why it exists.
Given the fact that Mormon Mitt Romney seems to be in the running to become the most powerful man in the world, the President of the United States, now seems as good a time as any to deal with the question of Mormonism openly on this blog. We have already discussed Watchtower at an earlier date, and now we are doing another organisation (not the last of them by any means) whose origins, theology and modus operandi can be traced into masonic occultism and therefore via that can be traced back to the devil himself.
Here is the comment by the anonymous viewer and afterwards to the end of this article is my response. There are one or two embellishments here that weren’t in the original reponse just because I have had fresh ideas to add, edits to make and also because I wanted to link here to some video, which I couldn’t do in the original response.
Not really, [presumably referring to my final words in the article “hope that was helpful”] your reply is nothing but psychological evasion. God or Jesus doesn’t say anything about earthly rulers or kings you just interpreted it that way. Jesus was amongst regular Jews, at the time there were no Jewish King or Rulers, the Romans owned the Jews. In fact Jesus said it is”written in your law” meaning the very essence of your being is Godly. Aren’t we made in God’s Image? Didn’t God breathe his “breath” in us to give us life? In terms of false Gods, it was meant for those who claimed they were The way to salvation and not Jesus, but God AND Jesus said the same thing. Stop trying to create illogical conclusions from obvious words from God and Jesus. God is in the business of fashioning Gods.
Well, like I said in that article, that is the take that Mormons make on it. It goes along with their general theology that God makes gods who go on to become gods of their own. This is a Book of Mormon idea, that the course of the Lord is “one eternal round” (Alma 7:20, Alma 37:12, 1 Nephi 10:19) but in the real Bible the course of history is never considered as a cycle, but as a line with a clear beginning and an ending, from an initial Creation to a final Resurrection, and the end-time events, closing off with the Resurrected Kingdom being handed by Jesus to the Father so that God may be all in all. Jesus is shown to Man as Alpha and Omega, the first and the last, and not, like in a multi-tome encyclopedia Aa-Cr, with many more volumes to come. His is the Name above all names, both in time and in Eternity.
The appeal of the Mormon theology to the natural, self-centred mind of Man is clear. Biblical theology about a linear plan of creation and redemption talks about a time line which is a one-off, and after that eternity – but we cannot envisage eternity. And so the real Bible never attempts to answer questions such as where God came from, what He will do next after this creation is finished, etc. This leaves unanswered questions which people naturally find hard to deal with and so they seek ways to “tidy up” the theology and give snappy answers to doubters also, as we all know how atheists like to try to stump theists by asking about eternity which none of us have experienced neither can we envisage.
The Mormon theology of cyclical salvation history, called also “eternal progression”, seems to produce a nice answer to this, but it has many down-sides, the biggest one is that it simply isn’t true. On top of other dangerous aspects like effectively making us all the equals of God and debasing and downgrading God Himself in this way, making Jesus only one of many, and subordinating God to part of the Creation, this theology also doesn’t really answer the questions that atheists ask anyhow, because we still don’t know how it all started and where it will all end, it is just all pushed out into endlessness. It is, in other words, one great big cop-out. Or, to use your own words, “nothing but psychological evasion”. Read the rest of this entry
|Playout date:||12 November 2006|
|Post Production:||Windows Movie Maker – slight use|
|Location:||Cape Town, South Africa|
|Other people featured:||Waitress at Sheraton|
|Music used:||“This could be heaven for everyone” by Queen – Karaoke version|
|Languages used:||English and Xhosa|
A very nice lady helps me to get an idea of what the click consonants of Xhosa sound like.
This video managed to get a share of silly comments from people who don’t really get it. Never mind. Tidak apa apa.
- Video: 2 Rhinos Fight for Life after Their Horns Are Chopped Off (blogs.scientificamerican.com)
- Should You Go Back? (themanahouse.wordpress.com)
- from the click in xhosa, to the pulse in house (blkcowrie.wordpress.com)
- Nelson Mandela’s first language being cut from South African schools (drsaraheaton.wordpress.com)
- Cultural genocide in Azania (South Afrika) (umkhontowesizwe.wordpress.com)
- 11 words for peace from 1 country (mothertonguesblog.com)
- Why Do African and English Clicks Sound So Different? It’s All in Your Head (blogs.discovermagazine.com)
I’m reposting here my response to the article about why the Owner of the blog Polyglot Posturings isn’t attracted to using the Goldlist system. Please first read her objections here:
OK, first off, I don’t think that flash cards focus on the short term memory. It all depends on how they are used. If you cram them, then you’ll switch on the short term memory. If you take them at a measured pace and make a sort of SRS for yourself from them, you’ll be OK. I have one major problem with flashcards, namely where am I going to keep 16,000 cards? And why bother to waste card for each word when some words will be learned the very first time we see them?
Having cleared up that I am not anti flash card (and I use readthekanji.com as well as goldlisting Japanese, and that’s a flash card approach, only on line) let me take your objections in order.
1. It was twenty minutes, but it doesn’t have to be twenty uninterrupted minutes. It is not necessary to do 25 words at once. I am saying don’t do too much in one go because the long-term memory is an unconscious function so you can’t tell when it’s got tired. You have to anticipate that instead, by having breaks. If you were to do 5 or 10 minutes a go that would also be fine. Only not to be stressed about it.
2. Once you get the system going then you develop a batching system and when you get to the end of the new batch of the headlist, then you simply automatically go back to the beginning again. You remember about it because the book is with you. It’s not necessarily a big book. Oonce you get into it it is relaxing and even addictive, and you don’t have to be in front of a screen or playing with scissors, cards and envelopes. The tools are very simple.
3. I found this argument the most surprising, and I would politely take issue with what fluency means and if it’s really the most important thing. If speaking is the most important skill, moreso than listening, reading or even writing, then I understand why people focus on keeping their smaller vocabularies actuve. It gives them the impression that they have really gone somewhere in a language, even if all they have is 1000 or 2000 words on the tip of their tongue. You cannot watch a film and understand it properly with that, you cannot really read a newspaper, you cannot delve into the literature of the culture you are looking at. You can get by like a glorified tourist, and that’s that. If all the vocab you need in a language is the vocab you’ll use all the time, then you’ll be on a par with the thickoes of that language, able to talk nineteen to the dozen but not being able to formulate very precise thoughts and limiting themselves always to a small pool of words. Your written work will not be interesting to read, anything beyond ordering food or buying shopping will be tough as you will struggle with nuances on only the words you have when you stop being a beginner. If you want to have a decent vocabulary, then it’s a question of building it up to 10,000 or maybe 15,000 words or more. Certainly that is the level that professionals using English in their work as a non-native language are attaining to and if you want to speak their language to them rather than have them simply override your attempts and slip into English with you, that’s what you’ll have to achieve. And that task takes time. Much much longer than the time spent learning just the basic grammar and the main irregular points of grammar,
Let me give you an example from real life of how I once countered the argument against the amassing of vocabulary: I was in a car with someone who said his university lecturer in English said to concentrate on grammar and not vocabulary as if you didn’t know the odd word you’d be able to guess from context what the meaning is. So I said “I see your teacher is an imbecile”, to which he said “is that good or bad?” I rested my case.
Nobody is saying that you have to achieve 15,000 words if you don’t want to. I would say it is very well worthwhile to achieve that “degree level” knowledge and it does mean a completely different kind of fluency than that pseudofluency of always having the 2000 words on the tip of one’s tongue, which actually isn’t possible for more than a few languages at once at 1000-2000 vocab levels anyway. The the passive acquisition of larger vocabularies is a better way to spend time than to spend it continually activating and reactivating a small and stagnant vocabulary.
There is nothing wrong with knowing words for the sake of knowing them. Words are the tools of thought and of ideas, and you never know where they will take you. Words are deeply exciting. So are phrases, for that matter. Knowing words for the sake of knowing them is infinitely preferable to not knowing words for the sake of not knowing them.
Learning 15,000 words in an ineffective way can take so long a person may well never do it. Using Goldlist it should take 600 hours in total, but in small bursts. You can see at every moment and calculate exactly how far along the road you are, and this aids motivation. You know when you pass the half way mark and every other numeric milestone.
- Initial thoughts on a long term vocab learning system (kaetslanguages.wordpress.com)
- 70 Ways To Improve Your English (doetaec.wordpress.com)
- Goldlist thoughts by Cyderspace (huliganov.tv)
- Goldlist Method Discussion on LingQ Forums – How to learn languages (huliganov.tv)
- Flashcard systems (kaetslanguages.wordpress.com)
|Playout date:||22 October 2006|
|Other people featured:||Sophie|
|Genre:||Family, musical muckaround|
|Languages used:||Romanian, English|
Early YT legend (and one of my sources) Brookers did a muckaround video called #1 Numa fan, to which someone else called Ognog responded with #2 and this was intended as a response to that, although right now that film has faded into obscurity with only 70 thousand hits to Brookers’ 7 million for the original muckabout, and this one by is only had 700. Leading to the observation that you loose two zeroes off the end whenever you go back one “generation” in spoofing something. Only one in a hundred people actually look at responses, it would seem!
What this all is is part of that whole craze from about 5 years back about the so-called “Numa” song. It was actually “Dragostea din tei” or “Love from the linden trees” by Hajducii, or the Outlaws, a Romanian group who managed to become the Summer hit of the year with this dancey tune. The lyrics to the chorus go “Vrei sa pleci dar nu ma, nu ma iei, nu ma nu ma nu me iei” and the repetition of “nu ma” gave the song its English name. It’s a bit like the Japanese hit Sukiyaki, which received that name as nobody could say “Ue wo muite arukou”.
The chorus in Romanian actually means “You want to leave, but you are not taking me” and the nu ma is ‘Not me’, so that it sounds like the “not me” song.
- Pdfcasting: Baker Tilly Klitou Romanian Tax Monthly August 2011 (quoracy.com)
- Hip-hop stays current by mining Internet memes (salon.com)
- Internet Memes 101: A Guide to Online Wackiness (pogue.blogs.nytimes.com)
- Dangerous Hot Romanian Nurses Threaten UK: Lord Winston (pamil-visions.net)