L i b ra 29 : Human i t y s e eki ng t o bri dg e t h e s pa n o f know le dg e T h e w o r d h uma ni t y d e s c e n d s f r o m t h e I n d o European “ e a r t h.

” 1 (IE) Its ro o t d hgh em w hi c h the means words paronyms i n cl u d e

c h t h o n i c ( o f t he un d e r w o r l d ) , a ut o ch t h o n ( o n e
o f t h e e a r l i e s t kn ow n i n h a b i t a n t s o f a p la c e ; a n a b o r i g i n e ; o n e t ha t sp r i n g s f r o m t h e s o i l h e i n h a b i t s) ,

c ha ma e p h yte

(a

lo w - g r o w i n g

perennial plant whose dormant overwintering buds are borne at or just above th e surface of t h e g r o u n d ) , c h a me l e o n ( a l i z a r d c ha r a c t e r i ze d b y t h e a b i l i t y t o ch a n g e c o l o r ) , c h am o m i l e ( a n a r o m a t i c p e r e n n i a l h e r b ) , ge rm a n de r ( a n a r o ma t i c p l a n e t w i t h p u rp l i s h o r r e d d i s h f l o w e rs ) , h u m b le , h u m i l ia t e, h u m i li t y, h u mu s ( a b r o w n o r b l a c k o r g a n i c s ub s t a n c e co n si s t i n g o f p a r t i a l l y o r w h o l l y d e c a y e d v e g e t a b le o r a n i m a l m a t t e r ) , o m ert a ( r u l e o r c o d e t h a t p r o h i b i t s s p e a ki n g o r d i v u l g i n g i n f o r m a t i on a b o u t c e r t a i n a ct i v i t i e s) , e x h u m e,

h o m a ge , h o m b re, h o m i n i d, h u m an e, c h e rn o ze m ( a v e r y b l a c k t o p s oi l , r i ch
i n h u m u s ) , si e ro ze m ( so i l s f o u n d i n c o o l t o t e m p e r a t e a r i d r e g i on s) ,

ze m s t vo ( a n e l e ct i v e c o u n c i l r e sp o n si b l e f o r t he l o c a l a d m i n i s t r a t i on o f a
p r o v i n c i a l d i s t r i ct i n c z a r i s t R u s s i a ) , a n d za m i n da r ( a n o f f i c i a l i n p r e c o l o n i a l In d i a a s s i g n e d t o c o l l e c t t he l a n d t a x e s o f h i s d i s t r i c t ) . T h e w o r d s e e k d e sc e n d s f r o m t h e I E r o o t s a g - w h i c h me a n s “ t o s e e k o u t . ” 2 I t s p a r o n y m s i n c l u d e t h e w o r d s s a ke , f o rsa ke , ra msh a c kl e , ran s a c k,

p re s a ge, sa ge, e x e ge s i s, h e ge m on y.
T h e w o r d b r i dg e d e s c e n d s f r o m t h e I E r o o t b hru - w h i c h m e a n s “ e y e b r o w . ” 3 I t s o n l y p a r o n y m i s t he w o r d b ro w.

1 Watkins, C. (2000), The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo European Roots, p. 20 2 Watkins, C. (2000), The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo European Roots, p. 72 3 Watkins, C. (2000), The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo European Roots, p. 13 Starling Hunter © 2011 1

T h e w o r d s p a n i s a d e r i v a t i v e o f t h e IE r o o t (s )p e n- w h i c h m e a n s “ t o d r a w , s t r e t c h, sp i n . ” 4 I t s p a r o n y m s i n cl u d e s p in dl e , p ai n te r ( a r op e a t t a c he d t o t he b ow o f a b o a t , us e d fo r t y i n g u p , a s w h e n d o c k i n g o r t o w i n g ) , p a n s y, p en c h a n t, p e n da n t, pe n du l u m , p e ns i o n, p e n si ve, pe s o,

p o i se , a pp en d, ap pe n di x , a vo i rdu p o is , c o m p en di u m , c o mp e n sa te , dep en d, di s p en s e, e xp e n d, im p e n d, pe n t h o us e, p e rpe n di c u la r, st ip e n d, sp a n, s u s p en d, sp an gl e , p o n de r , a n d sp o nt an e o u s .
T h e w o r d k n owl edg e i s a d e ri v a t i ve of t h e I E r o ot g no - w h i c h m e a n s “ t o k n o w. ” 5 P a r o n ym s i n c l u d e a c kn o wl e dge , c an , c o n, c un n i n g, c o u t h,

n o t i ce , n o ti f y, n ot io n , a c q u ai n t, c o gnit i o n, re c o gni ze, gno m e , gn os i s, gn o s t i c, n ot e, an n ot a t e, c on n o te , n o rm , n o rm a l, a n d a bno rm a l .
TH EMES : T h e f i r s t n o t a b l e r e l a t i o n s h i p i s t h e s yn o n y m o u s o n e b e t w e e n kn o wl e dge a n d WI SDOM , t he l a t t e r o f w h i c h i s i m p l i e d i n t he w o r d s a ge , a p a r on y m o f s e eki ng , w h i c h m e a n s “ h a vi n g o r e x hi b i t i n g wisdom and calm judgment.“6 S e c o n d l y w e mi g h t n o t e t h a t a m o n g t h e d e f i n i t i on s o f s p a n i s “ a r a i l r o a d t r e s t le o r b r i d g e t h a t e x t e n ds f r o m o n e p o i n t t o a n o t h e r. ” 7 T h u s, i t i s a s y n on y m o f b ri d ge . A t h e me h e r e m i g h t b e CO NN ECT ION . A t h i r d r e l a t i o n s h i p c o n c e r n s t w o w or d s t h a t m i g h t h a v e a s u b j e ct a n d adjunct r e la t i on sh i p , namely

o m ert a ( r u l e o r c o d e t h a t p r o hi b i t s

s p e a ki n g o r d i v u l g i n g i n f o r m a t i o n a b o u t c e r t a i n a c t i v i t i e s) a n d G n o s t ic ( o f , re l a t i n g t o, or p o s s e s s i n g i n t e ll e c t u a l o r sp i ri t ua l k n o w l e d g e ; a b e l i e v e r i n G n o s t i c i s m ) a n d gn o s is ( i n t u i t i v e a p p r e h e n s i o n o f s p i r i t u a l t r u t h s , a n e s ot e r i c f o r m o f k n o w l e d g e s o u g h t b y t h e Gn os t i c s ) . T h a t i s t o say, it is often reported that initiates of esoteric doctrines like

G n o s t i ci s m o f t e n d o n o t s p e a k op e n l y a b o ut t he i r kn o w l e d g e o r t he
p r o c e s s b y w h i c h i t i s ob t a i n e d. T h e t h e m e h e r e m i g h t b e RE TIC ENC E .

4 Watkins, C. (2000), The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo European Roots, p. 82 5 Watkins, C. (2000), The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo European Roots, pp.32 6 http://thesaurus.com/browse/knowledge 7 http://education.yahoo.com/reference/dictionary/entry/span Starling Hunter © 2011 2

W e m i g h t a l so n ot e t h a t s e ve r a l w o r d s s e e m t o d e sc r i b e q u a l i t i e s i d e a l l y a ss o c i a t e d w i t h a s a ge . F o r e xa m p l e , a m o n g t he p a r o n y m s of s p an a r e t h e w o r d s p o is e d ( a s s u r e d , co m p o s e d, h e l d b a l a n c e d o r s t e a d y i n r e a d i n e s s ) a n d pen s i ve ( d e e p l y t h ou g h t f u l ) . O n e o f t h e p a r o n y m s o f hu ma ni t y i s h u mb l e ( m a r k e d b y m e e k n e ss o r m o de s t y i n b e h a v i o r, a t t i t u d e , o r s p i r i t ) . P e r h a p s t he t h e me h e r e i s S A GACIT Y .

Starling Hunter © 2011

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