toki. mi jan Loteni

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loteni
Posts: 89
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:14 pm

toki. mi jan Loteni

Postby loteni » Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:24 pm

Hi, I am learning toki pona :)

I am really loving the language, I got the official book and read it 100s of times, and really meditated on it, and have begun to understand some of it :D.

But I am finding it hard to find online resources and pointers to help with this.

Maybe there are people here who also are working through the book in this way ? And could maybe give me pointers or join me in understanding the language ?

For instance currently im a bit stuck on this puzzle : why does ike not mean good ?

Thanks :)

ali li pona :)
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

janKipo
Posts: 2828
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 2:20 pm

Re: toki. mi li jan Loteni

Postby janKipo » Thu Jul 28, 2016 11:35 pm

Nanpa wan la sina wile ala kepeken nimi 'li' poka nimi 'mi' en nimi 'sina'.

Tpnimi.blogspot.com has articles about many tricky points, especially the FAQs. Tomolipu.blogspot.com has several good texts to work through and a reference list of other resources on the web. There are many other texts at, though the notes are in Polish, but there a links back to discussions on this site.

The four Facebook groups, toki pona, toki pona task, tomorrow lips and learning toki pona all are mainly devoted to working with you to improve your skills.

Why would bad mean good? I don't understand your problem.

loteni
Posts: 89
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:14 pm

Re: toki. mi jan Loteni

Postby loteni » Thu Jul 28, 2016 11:46 pm

Toki. Jan Kipo,

Yeah i have scanned thoroughly online for resources for learning the language as presented in the official book. I have read your blog completely also.

However I still want to learn the language from the official book, only if that fails me will I fall back to using a different dialect of it. So far I have found that the official language is extremely more expressive than other dialects.

Thanks for the information though :)

Well I worked out that "mi moku e moku" doesnt mean "I feed the livestock" because of the noun products... I suppose the idea behind ike is simpler though ;)
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

janKipo
Posts: 2828
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 2:20 pm

Re: toki. mi jan Loteni

Postby janKipo » Fri Jul 29, 2016 10:46 am

Interesting. Generally, the official book has a smaller vocabulary and more restrictive rules that are generally allowed on the websites, so I wonder how it is more expressive. But that is just a matter of seeing it i practice. That will turn up eventually.

Goodness, why would you think that 'mi moku e moku' meant "I feed the livestock" long enough to bother discovering that it didn't? If this sort of muddle comes out of the official textbook (I'm sure it doesn't), we're in deep kimchi. And how does that reflect on 'ike' and 'pona'?

[Added later: Ahah! You started from taking 'moku' as a noun meaning "food", rather than a verb meaning "eat". Then 'mi moku e moku' could mean "I distributed food to the edible" or what you offer. Presumably, your discovery was just that 'moku' is a verb meaning "eat" and so all the rest goes away.]

loteni
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Re: toki. mi jan Loteni

Postby loteni » Fri Jul 29, 2016 1:38 pm

It confuses me why you would say that about the book. The books prescribed usage of the language allows me to say things that I come to find other dialects have great difficulty in saying, and end up coming up with very clunky ways of saying, that misses the meaning of what they are trying to say. I find that the book has encoded a method that reminded me of how my own children used words in new ways when they didnt know there was another word we use for that which they were saying. And ways of speaking about things that are new in a given language seems to first adopt spontaneous using these methods also. And so I also find that other dialects are playing catch-up to the official book dialect.

If we look in the dictionary in the book. moku is a VERB and only a VERB. It is given one sense of meaning and within that sense is the action of eating, or to eat. The other semantic points within that sense are also useful for expansion, however eating seems to be a good overall sense of the word. So just taking that specific meaning of that sense of the word, we can convert the word into a noun; "something you eat"; food. The book actually explains this rule of conversion using this word in this sense at that semantic focus.

So now we can add another entry in the dictionary; moku (noun) : food. This is not a primary noun though so we shouldn't think of moku being in the dictionary as NOUN, if we want to make a dictionary with these expanded meanings, we need to be clear its not primarily a noun, because this is important in the language. Maybe the entry would be something like : moku (NOUN - Derived from VERB - level 1 derivative) : food.

so now I can say things like "mi moku e moku", the verb is primary use, and means eat, and I am using the word as a noun, there exists a verb derived NOUN of moku, and that means "food". so "mi moku e moku" means "I eat food" ..

Cool :D, now I have another word, food / moku / noun, and I can make other words from this; Lets make another verb, because it would be useful to be able to say more related action things with this.

noun -> verb; use food on; feed, to feed. So now I have a 2nd level derived verb version of moku, meaning feed (its derived from a derivative). I can express that, given the right context very simply now; other dialects might be forced to say "mi pana e moku tawa soweli", but in the right context I can express that same thing like this "mi moku e soweli".

Now lets squeeze more meaning out of it; and turn it back into a noun:

verb -> noun; something you feed; livestock, animals, plants, people... (things that need feeding)

And if you study the official book, you come to realise you can, in the right context, say "mi moku e moku", to mean "I feed the livestock"....

Well hopefully others understand the rules better than I did, because you cannot mean it to say that. Obviously this process would go loopy and weave all over the place and anything could mean anything... Whenever I come to an issue like this in studying pu, I assume, Sonja is very clever and has solved the problem; and yeah upon re-reading the book :) I note for the umpteenth time that she has worded things very well. There are no semantic loops in toki pona, and the semantic chain breaks stop me also from getting "I feed the livestock" from "mi moku e moku".
Last edited by loteni on Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

loteni
Posts: 89
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:14 pm

Re: toki. mi jan Loteni

Postby loteni » Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:06 pm

jan Kipo,

Oh I often notice you use "mi la" to intend to mean "in my opinion". Whilst in some situations this works, you should really avoid using that for that meaning. I have noticed others have tried to get you to refrain from using that construction in that way, but I'm not sure you are convinced... Maybe this will help ;

Maybe you want to say categories of things like ; In my opinion, X is bad. tawa mi la, is less ambiguous since ;

"mi la pipi li ike" ; this means something like you have a bad insect in your body, a serious issue, requiring a doctor probably.

Or it atleast means; you have something like a swarm of bad insects around you whereever you are, maybe you need to bath ?

I hope the severity of these unintended but actual meanings, will convince you that tawa mi la, is what you want to be using if you mean to merely say "in my perspective"..
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

janKipo
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Re: toki. mi jan Loteni

Postby janKipo » Fri Jul 29, 2016 6:59 pm

Well, in fact, it is not clear that 'mi la pipi li ike' does - or could -- mean that I am covered with bugs. 'mi la' "in my opinion" is an old established tp usage, to which I don't recall anyone objecting before (but then I am probably wrong, since someone objects to everything). And, in general, 'N la' for "according to N" is very standard. 'mi la' is objectionable, if at all, because it is superfluous; in tp, whatever you say flat out is taken to be your opinion, to be treated appropriately. Incidentally, 'N la' before quotes is another way of dealing with dialog. [I skip over the fact that 'tawa mi' is odd for "in my opinion", which is more logically 'tan mi', since I am the source, not the goal of the opinion. But Norma Loquendi -- or Sonja -- has screwed this one up, too.] Things like 'mi la' derive from terminal prepositional phrases but in many cases lose their prepositions in the transition. In this case, the preposition is indeed 'tawa' (but see inset), which is not always lost (unlike 'lon', which pretty much is), but here it seems to go quite naturally.

You have the makings of a good epigone; keep up the work.

loteni
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Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:14 pm

Re: toki. mi jan Loteni

Postby loteni » Fri Jul 29, 2016 8:35 pm

jan Kipo,

As far as I can make out, you are using the term "epigone" in a derogatory manner. I don't really know why since from reading your conversations with others, you come across as a pretty objective and rational person.

Now about the A la B construction. The official book leaves this open to some interpretation. However I think that having a number of slang terms that people will have to learn in addition to the materials in the book is against the nature of the language and in effect merely increases the number of "words/phrases" you will need to memorise before you can follow conversations.

Like I said previously, lets assume Sonja did not make some kind of mistake, but wrote well what she intended. Aka - this is a set theoretic construct. This fits well her definition, and gives the construct powerful expressibility.

mi la -- of course since your mind is part of you, this can mean something like "in your opinion". However your mind is not the only part of you.

I really enjoyed reading your blog article about the different in use la forms, I wrote them all down and tried to not only memorise them, but understand how they could be logically derived from the books presentation of "la". This really helped me with coming to grips with the construct. I came to realise how they were derived, and how in the right context they would mean exactly that. However just thinking they are some brute additions to the language, I think this misses the point. Since they can be used in other ways, context permitting.

[Added later, but before any follow up posts...]

Sorry but I feel I must add a little something regarding your suggestion about; all utterances in toki pona, being merely of your opinion. This misses the mark.

lawa mi la -- this is more suggestive of what we mean in english by "in your opinion", hence it merely happens to be a mental state you have... the reason for that mental state is another topic.

.... tawa mi -- this is more suggestive of what you tend to mean with "mi la", hence in your perspective, or this is how you see things.

All other utterances in toki pona, should be understood very differently. Without writting volumes on the meaning of the phrase "toki pona". I think it is sufficient to just pick out this aspect of it : "friendly speech". This implies that utterances in toki pona are more than just mere opinion.

In fact you say what you believe to be true, and that you communicate them to others because you have adequate reasons to believe they are true. So that if they were to ask you to justify those reasons you would normally be firstly expected to give good grounds for them to come to the same belief. If instead you fell back to "tawa mi", "well this is just my perspective", that would probably be slightly deceptive, context not permitting. As well as if you fell back to "lawa mi", well this is just my mental state...

I.E. What you say is what you think, and what you think is (good/useful) rational.
Follower of the official dialect of toki pona as presented in the official book; Toki Pona, The Language of Good by Sonja Lang.

janKipo
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Re: toki. mi jan Loteni

Postby janKipo » Sat Jul 30, 2016 10:25 am

'epigone' is not derogatory, merely jocular. I think my Facebook profile still lists me as a conlang epigone (a repetitive redundancy, since I never see the term used for anyone else than conlangers -- and the seven against Thebes, of course; Antigone was an epigone). The classic story about epigones (told of several people, surely true of James Cooke Brown and Loglan)is that a conlanger has just completed is language when a person knocked at his door and started speaking to him in a recognizable and intelligible version of that language, then presented him with a translation of some recherche text (used to be the Bible, now DDJ), a new writing system perfectly designed for the language, and 14 proposals to improve the language even further. That entering person was the archetype epigone. (Several people beat me to JCB, but I did come with the Babel story -- not then quite so common a test case. I never tried to improve the alphabet (except advocating the use of /h/, but that was later) and suggestions for improving the language came later and were organic and incremental. But I stuck around longer than most.

You want to be careful with pu. It is not everything that Sonja has had to say about tp by a long shot and, indeed, contradicts some things she said that have become entrenched in tp usage. And, of course, there is a lot of tp usage from before the book that is not going away just because it is not explicitly covered in the book (or even explicitly contradicted in the book). The vocabulary is just the most obvious case, but there are also the 'pi' rules, probably some 'la' usage, the status of 'kepeken', how to say "talk about" and on and on. You can join Lope and call these slang if you want, but people will continue to use them anyhow and, if you don't at least recognize them, you will miss a lot of what is going on. Saying that you have to memorize them makes the whole process a very different one from what actually occurs: you don't just read a list and absorb them by rote, but rather you come across them a few times in text and come to recognize them for what they are -- a very different process and a much easier one.

The bit about "all utterances are merely my opinion" is from Sonja somewhere and is, ultimately, merely a statement of the obvious. Now, I may or may not be able to give reasons for my opinion (which reasons are again just from my store of held propositions), but that doesn' make the beliefs true. Even if most people agree with the beliefs and the reasons for them, they may still be false (this being the political time, this all becomes more and more to the point).

jan_Lope
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Re: toki. mi jan Loteni

Postby jan_Lope » Mon Aug 01, 2016 9:42 am

loteni wrote:Hi, I am learning toki pona :)

I am really loving the language, I got the official book and read it 100s of times, and really meditated on it, and have begun to understand some of it :D.

But I am finding it hard to find online resources and pointers to help with this.

Maybe there are people here who also are working through the book in this way ? And could maybe give me pointers or join me in understanding the language ?

For instance currently im a bit stuck on this puzzle : why does ike not mean good ?

Thanks :)

ali li pona :)


jan Loteni, o toki!

You can find interesting links here:
http://rowa.giso.de/languages/toki-pona ... /links.php

For learning the words you can use memrise:
http://www.memrise.com/courses/english/ ... =toki+pona

You can use Twitter:
https://twitter.com/hashtag/tokipona?f= ... t&src=hash

In my lessons you can find texts also:
http://rowa.giso.de/languages/toki-pona ... essons.php

(My lessons don't support Toki Piona slangs.)

pona!
In my lessons you can find
pona!
jan Lope
https://jan-lope.github.io
(Lessons and the Toki Pona Parser - A tool for spelling, grammar check and ambiguity check of Toki Pona)

On my foe list are the sockpuppets janKipo and janSilipu because of permanent, rude spamming.


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