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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

River Mekong Valley Civilization

There were two civilizations center on river Mekong Valley, namely Bacson Hoabinh and Dongson. The first civilization was Mesolitikum, and then grew into Neolitikum culture. They have known to make farm, made boats, mastering horoscope and belief.

Geographically, Indonesian is located on cross position between two continents (Asia and Australia) and between two ocean (Hindia and Pacific). This position make Indonesia easy to take the influence from outside, especially the influence toward our civilization and culture.

1. Location
Kwen Lun mountain area in Central Asia is the headwaters of Mekong river or Cambodia, flew through South China area, and became the border of Indo China and Thailand and construct Cambodia bay. Mekong river fertilizer the area its flew through, such as Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia.

2. Proponent
The ancient man was also came from Central Asia. They spread out to the seashore through rivers and valleys. It is believed that they spreading because of disaster and diseases. Based on the fossil found, it can be analyzed that they consists of some species, such as
Papua Melanesoid, Mongoloid and Australoid. The mix marriage produced the brown skin Malayan. Tonkin bay area in Indo China was their second country. from Indo China they spread out to Cambodia, Thailand, and became Austro-Asia nation, and most of them went to the islands and then became Austronesian nation.

3. Culture

There are two cultural centers in Mekong river valley, namely Bacson-Hoabinh and Dongson. Bacson located on the mountain and Hoabinh on the land. It was near Tonkin bay. At the beginning, the civilization in this area was Mesolitikum. The famous culture was Sumatra axe with Papua Melanesoid as the proponent. Then, from Tonkin bay developed Neolitikum culture with tools such as square axe and oval axe. Square axe spread out through Thailand, Malay cape until West Indonesia with Austronesia Malay as the proponent. On the other hand, oval axe spread out through Taiwan, Philippines and to East Indonesia with Papua Melanesoid as the proponent. This spreading out occurred about 2.000 BC.

Beside these materially culture, it is also known some other spiritually culture, such as :

a. Ability to make boat

The boat made was use to sail from Asian land to islands area (Austronesia). One of characteristic of boat made in Malayan was the application of outriggers. Outriggers is made of wood or bamboo and made a boat balancing.

b. Ability to cultivate

Cultivating including unirrigated and irrigated field. The output was rice as the primary food, and crops plants like bean, soybean, and corn. To cultivate, they used plows pulled by buffaloes or cows.

c. Astronomy

Astronomy knowledge applied by Malayan for farming and sailing. Waluku Orion looked like a plow used as a sign to know the coming of cultivating season; while Southern Cross Orion was used to navigate in sailing.

d. Beliefs

Animism and dynamism was the belief they well known. These beliefs produced the Wayang culture, grave veneration, etc.

From the above statements, there are two things we have to discuss :
1. State whether the culture and civilization are the same meaning or different? give your reason and examples!

2. Can you write down on your own word about the civilization in Mekong river valley?!

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