Wednesday, August 26, 2009

More Adena and Hopewell

The Adena culture which probably gave birth to the Hopewell Exchange System Not only used the spear, bow and arrow, and sophisticated trapping techniques, but also use a variety of spear throwers of excellent design. As we have said, hunting, fishing and wild gathering was in addition to a practical and efficient practice of agriculture.

There religion seems to have been strong and important and there remains evidence of their centers.Much of what we know about their religion consists of physical remains and artifacts that seem to have no economic use. We might profit by recognizing that many cultures were more whole than is ours and that the peoples of those cultures often did not emphasize the cultural categories that we do. For example the famous 'mounds' to which we have tended to give religious cognizance, probably had that, they were probably also focal points of trade, commerce, and social gatherings.
They may also have been teaching and and research centers. the mounds, for example, seem to be related to cycles they celebrated, measured by the lunar maximum and minimum as measured along the horizon. The solstices, equinoxes, and their quarters were also tracked at the mounds.

Like the rest of us, they seemed to have practiced 'art for arts sake.' An example of of their sensibilities may be seen in their many stone relief carvings. A marvelously graceful and clean lined carving in mica of a human hand remains strongly with me.

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