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Toki Pona Forums • Happy Jule
Page 1 of 3

Happy Jule

Posted: Sat Dec 25, 2010 10:44 am
by janMato
Jule probably came from the PIE whol, or wheel. In heathen times, there were prohibitions against working (namely spinning wheels), and Jule wreaths were the big deal (not so much the trees, that was later). Jule was also the marking of the old year and start of the new since it fell about on the winter solstice.

So the phrase should have the word sike in it, something about pali ala.

tenpo sike sin en pali ala la o musi pona o pilin pona!

Re: Happy Jule

Posted: Sun Dec 26, 2010 12:22 pm
by janLuka
ken la mi toki "tenpo Jule." nimi ni li jo ala e nimi mute mute. tan ni li pona.

tenpo Jule ni la sina pona ala pona? sina musi seme? tenpo Jule ni la me pilin sijelo ike lili. taso mi musi kin. mi moku e moku pona li pana e ijo tawa jan ali pi tomo mi.

mi jo ala e nasin sewi. taso jan pi kulupu mama weka mi (extended family?) li jo e nasin sewi. mi musi e tenpo Jule pi nasin sewi poka ona mute.

Re: Happy Jule

Posted: Sun Dec 26, 2010 6:17 pm
by janKipo

Re: Happy Jule

Posted: Mon Dec 27, 2010 10:23 am
by janLuka
let's see. "I was feeling a little bit sick"
[pilin sijelo] -- was supposed to be "condition", or the way the body feels. pilin sijelo ike lili = slightly bad body-feel; a little sick. That is pretty awkward though.

how about "mi jo e sijelo pi ike lili" ?
can we say figuratively "sijelo mi li pilin ike lili" or "insa mi li pilin ike lili"
"insa mi li pilin ike lili" i think is good for a stomachache or something like that; it distinguishes it nicely from being sore or having an asthma attack.

Re: Happy Jule

Posted: Mon Dec 27, 2010 12:26 pm
by janKipo
Hmmm! I think it would be a mistake to have something other than a person feeling; I know someone in authority objected to 'lawa mi li pilin ike'. So, now the question comes down to what the phrases after 'pilin' but before 'e' are. They must be adverbial: 'sijelo' "in the body", place; 'ike lili' "somewhat bad", manner?. In any case, the 'ike lili' is a right grouping block, so should take a 'pi'. UNLESS 'pilin', and thus 'pilin sijelo', work like prepositions and automatically set up right grouping (though this loose way of doing things creates the problem of when the right grouping starts and the modifiers of the core end). I think this latest suggestion just has to be wrong, for the reason suggested as well as for the complications it makes for the grammar. Personally, I am inclined to go a step further and suggest that the whole construction 'pilin ike' in any sense other than "not very good at feeling/thinking, etc." is illegitimate -- it spite of being very common (from the English habit -- which already wrong on the subject). That is, I would say (if I was being careful at all) 'mi pilin sijelo e ike lili'.

Re: Happy Jule

Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2010 5:25 pm
by janLuka
so should we say "mi pilin e pona" (I'm feeling good) instead of "mi pilin pona" ?

In any case, it's too bad we can only speak this language on the internet. All these expressions would be much clearer with the accompanying facial expression and intonation.

mi pilin ike :( = i'm sad
mi pilin ike ;) = i'm not very good at thinking
mi pilin ike :| = i'm not feeling well

Re: Happy Jule

Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2010 6:04 pm
by janMato
mi pilin pona vs mi pilin e pona

I'd say either is fine. toki pona has to tolerate a huge amount of ambiguity. All sentences can mean many things.

I'd also say it's fine because if we must always have a subject and if we can only put things into subject/object, then the grammatical case won't match up with the semantic one all the time.

toki pona also forces everything into Subject - Object, which imagines a clear agent and a clear patient (the do-er and the do-ee). If I'm just experiencing something, I still need to force it into this subject/object model. "pona" is abstract and doesn't make for a good patient, but the mi doesn't make a good agent either-- I'm not doing anything.

So I don't have a suitable agent, nor a suitable patient. The subject is still required and the remainder has to go into

toki pona can't help being like English in this respect, imho, because English is also a subject-object language. We force everything into a subject-object pattern even if the subject isn't really a good agent and the object isn't a really good patient. "The door will slam, the door slammed, doors are slamming in the breeze" The door isn't doing anything of it's own volition, so it isn't a very good subject.

Ergative-absolutive and active-stative languages can make a better alignment of the semantic and grammatical roles, but I wouldn't be surprised if they end up with similar situations, where the players on the stage are being forced into grammatical places because that's the form that is most common.

GZB is one fake language that if I remember correctly supports a bunch of cases including a "experiencer" maker, so that a sentence would say "I'm the experience and the experience is good"

Re: Happy Jule

Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2010 6:27 pm
by janKipo
I'm pretty sure to lose this one, but I'm trying for some coherence. When 'pilin' means "think", what goes in the DO slot is what we think, so, when it means "feel", it ought to be what we feel. The trouble is that "what we feel" is ambiguous (as is "feel"), for what we feel may be a tactile object (the old fraternity, I Felta Thigh) or it may be a certain sensation, classified however we can. And these seem like very different sorts of things to us (as do, to lesser extent, feelings and thoughts). But I think we need to accept that tp sees them as the same (Lord, I would hate try to define this notion of pilin in a uniform and incisive fashion, without relying on the ambiguities of English!). English has an array of devices to make the distinctions in the parallel constructions: mass vs. count, adverb vs. adjective, subordinate clause vs. verbal noun, bur tp has only modifier vs. object. So I think we should make the most practical (and least confusing) use we can of them.
And this without considering the "about" issue.

Re: Happy Jule

Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2010 6:48 pm
by janKipo
gzbI suppose I'm missing Mato's point here somewhere, but I don't quite see what his ruminations have to do with the issue at hand. It's not helped by the suggestion that Subject-Object languages are somehow special -- as if there were some other kinds of languages to contrast them with -- or that subject and object somehow aligned with agent and patient, which they don't even in English and certainly not in any number of other languages (Basque as a handy example). Nor does confusing case with grammatical role help. But those -- and related screeds -- aside, what does this have to with the issue of how to say in tp that I am sick? I suppose that, in addition to the usual 'mi pilin ike' and 'mi pilin e ike,' we could also do something like 'ike li jo e mi', which would get the patient (pun intended) in the "right" place (though the subject is hardly an agent). What is more to the point, however, is that 'mi pilin ike' is sometimes confusingly ambiguous and 'mi pilin e ike' is as ambiguous but less confusingly so (I think).
btw, Loglan and Lojban, which I seem to recall are parents or cousins of GZB, have quite specific experiential structures, too (though I don't think anybody uses them).

Re: Happy Jule

Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2010 7:03 pm
by janMato
My ramblings are inspired by a chapter on morphosyntactic alignment in "Describing Morphosyntax" I'll go see if I can track down the relevant quote. Again, the gist of it is that the semantic roles of the various actors on the stage have to be shoehorned into grammatical roles. Hitting works very well in nominative-accusative, while experiencing (I'm experiencing something, but I'm not doing anything to the thing I'm experiencing-- dreaming would be an even better example, I'm dreaming a dream, but there's no volition, dreams are more likely to do something to me (e.g. scare me) etc). But rather than having a different grammatical case for each shade of semantic meaning, we have to squish it into subject/object and live with the ambiguity.