Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Unicorn fossil; kidnapping Asian brides (video)

Dhr. Seven and Amber Larson, Wisdom Quarterly; VICE; Tyler MacDonald (
Remember the coelacanth*? What does "science" know generalizing from so few samples?

Unicorns were real, royal Central Asian pony (Domenico Zampieri, c. 1602, Palazo Farnese)

The Middle Country and Shakya Land (VICE)
The Buddha was born in Central Asia ( in Shakya Land, known as Scythia to the ancient Greeks, which includes what are today called the "Stans." Kapilavastu and the two other seasonal capitals were likely in what is now Afghanistan. But the Shakyas must have wandered and from time to time held a territory reaching as far and wide as the rugged landscape would allow. In that land with rival neighbors vying for territory, as the Silk Route brought travelers and riches, there had once lived the mythical "unicorn." But this was a giant creature in what by the Buddha's time was an equestrian culture. Another of the Stans was made famous by "Borat" (Sacha Baron Cohen), a rugged land swallowed up into the USSR and only now emerging as a once great kingdom separating Europe and Asia. The Buddha warned what can be expected to happen to a society that abducts women, which he would not have done were it not a practice.
  • Who were the Scythians (the Saka, the Shakyans)? The Buddha was a Scythian/Saka/Shakya, known as the "Sage of the Shakya Clan" (Shakyamuni). The Saka (Old Persian Sakā, Sanskrit Śaka, Greek Σάκαι, Latin Sacae) was the term used in Persian and Sanskrit sources for the Scythians, a large group of Eastern Iranian (Aryan) nomadic tribes on the Eurasian Steppe.
A Culture of Kidnapping
Host Thomas Morton (VICE) investigates. In rural Kyrgyzstan men still marry their women the old-fashioned way --  by abducting them off the street and forcing them to be their wives. Bride-napping is supposedly an ancient custom that has made a major comeback since the fall of communism, when Kyrgyzstan was part of the Russian Empire (USSR). It now accounts for nearly half of all marriages in some parts. VICE traveled to the Kyrgyz countryside to follow and aid and abet a young groom named Kubanti as he surprised his teenage girlfriend Nazgul with the gift of marriage by kidnapping.

*The Coelacanth
Photo: Ballista, via Wikimedia Commons. Distributed under a CC-BY-SA-3.0 license.(Wired) This creature was thought to be extinct until a live one was caught in 1938 and another was found in a market in 1997. Coelacanths were known only from fossils until a live Latimeria chalumnae was discovered off the coast of South Africa in 1938. Until then, they were presumed to have gone extinct more than 65 million years ago, in the late Cretaceous period. A second living species of coelacanth, Latimeria menadoensis, was discovered in an Indonesian market in 1997, and a live specimen was caught one year later. More

"Siberian unicorn" survived longer than thought 
Tyler MacDonald (, March 28, 2016)
Siberian Unicorn
"Siberian unicorn" likely went extinct around 29,000 years ago, surviving 321,000 years longer than previously thought, a new scientific study by Tomsk Univ. determined (Getty).
The "Siberian unicorn" likely went extinct only around 29,000 years ago, conflicting with previous research that suggested its extinction around 350,000 years ago.
Although the "Siberian unicorn," also known as the Elasmotherium sibiricum, was thought to have died out around 350,000 years ago, a new study by researchers from Tomsk State University (TSU) reveals that this "unicorn" instead went extinct 29,000 years ago in Kazakhstan.

Mammoth rhinos (
"Most likely, the south of Western Siberia was a refúgium, where this rhino persevered the longest in comparison with the rest of its range," said Andrey Shpanski, a paleontologist at TSU and first author on the study. "There is another possibility that it could migrate and dwell for a while in the more southern areas."

Hybrid-unicorn have been brought back.
The team came to their conclusions after examining a rhinoceros skull that was found near Kazakhstan's Kozhamzhar Village. Using radiocarbon AMS-method analysis, the team determined that the animal died around 29,000 years ago. More

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