Learning Indonesian: Memasak soto mi

Hari ini saya memasak soto mi dari resep dari kuliah saya.  Resep ini di bawah!  Kami suka.  Saya kira itu tidak enak kerena pertama tidak ada rasa tetapi bila selesai enak sekali!  Dan isteri saya kira pun!

Resep Soto Mi
Dimasak soto

Untuk 5-6 orang



500 g daging sapi
2 l air
3 bungkus (500gr) mi kuning
1/2 kol
bawang goreng
krupuk udang
3 telur rebus
5 batang daun bawang
2 buah wortel diiris kira-kira 0,5 cm
2 batang seledri diiris setebal 1 cm (aku tidak menambah--isteriku nggak suka seledri)



1 batang serai, dimemarkan
3 helai daun jeruk
1 helai daun salam
3 siung bawang merah, dihaluskan
3 siung bawang putih, dihaluskan
1/2 st bubuk kunyit
1 st merica putih, dihaluskan
3 butir kemiri, dihaluskan
garam secukupnya
(aku menambah sedikit lengkuas dan sedikit jehe, diiris, dan satu biji adas manis atau anis bintang dan dua atau tiga cabai merah dihaluskan)



10 butir cabai merah, dihaluskan
1/4 st garam
1 st air jeruk nipis


Daging dipotong kira-kira 2x3 cm lalu direbus dengan 2 liter air di api sedang selama satu jam. Masukkan bumbu halus, serai, daun jeruk, daun salam, dan seledri. Direbus selama 15 menit lalu masukkan wortel dan masak lagi selama 15 menit. Masukkan separuh daun bawang. Sajikan dengan sisa daun bawang, bawang goreng, krupuk, dan mi (sebelum disajikan mi diseduh dengan air panas).

Learning Khmer : លំហាត់

So, I'm trying to learn Khmer.  It isn't so easy.  This summer I will try to blog in Khmer at least four times a month to stay in practice (I'll be in Indonesia this summer, and I'll blog in Khmer on another site, Learn Khmer With Me; I'll also be keeping an Indonesian language blog about my time there).

I'm nearing the end of my first year of intensive study, and I thought I would share what my homework looks like at this point.  By the way, the word for homework or drill in Khmer is លំហាត់.  The words I have to look up I try to write and define so I remember them especially when I am trying to re-read my stories. 

Below is the story of Big Brother Mao.  Big Brother Mao is basically an extremely lazy good-for-nothing who does not brush his teeth and continues to live and leach off of his mother. The story (and grammar) below is pretty simple.  He wakes up late and wants to go to the nearby zoo, but he does not want to walk and does not have any money.  If you know Khmer, feel free to correct my mistakes!

រឿងរ៉ាវ នៃ ថ្ងៃ បង ប្រុស ម៉ៅ
ផ្នែក មួយ

បង ប្រុស ម៉ៅ ភ្ញាក់ ១០ ម៉ោង។
គាត់​ បាន ដេក ច្រើន។

នៅ ថ្ងៃ នេះ គាត់ នឹង ទៅ សួនសត្វ។
គាត់ នឹង ឃើញ សត្វ។

ម្តាយ គាត់ ធ្វើ កាហ្វេ។
បង ប្រុស ម៉ៅ ចូលចិត្ត ផឹក កាហ្វេ នៅ ពេល ព្រឹក។
គាត់ ចូលចិត្ត វា ផ្អែមណាស់ ជាមួយ ស្ករ ច្រើន។

គាត់  ទៅ នៅ ខាង ក្នុងបន្ទ ប់ទឹក។
គាត់ មិន កោរ ពុក មាត់ គាត់។
បង ប្រុស ម៉ៅ ខ្ជិលណាស់។
គាត់ លុប មុខ ប៉ុន្តែ មិន ដុស ធ្មេញ។

គាត់ ស្លៀក ខោ ខ្លី មិន ល្អ។ 
អាវយឺត គាត់ មិន ល្អ។
ម្តាយ គាត់​ បោកអ្ញុត ប៉ុន្តែ គាត់ មិន មើល ទៅ នៅ ខាងក្នុ ងទូ។
គាត់ ស្លៀក អ្វីមួយ នៅ ជិតស្និទ្ធ ពី គាត់។
បង ប្រុស ម៉ៅ​ ខ្ជិលណាស់!

សួនសត្វ នៅ ជិត ផ្ទះ គាត់។ ដប់ នាទី ពី ផ្ទះ បង ប្រុស ម៉ៅ.
គាត់ សួរ: "ម៉ា!  សូម លុយ!"
គាត់ មិន មាន ធ្វើការ។
គាត់ មិន មាន លុយ។
គាត់ ចង់ យក ម៉ូតូ ទៅ សួនសត្វ។
គាត់ មិន ចង់ ដើរ។
គាត់ ចង់ ទិញ សំបុត្រ សួនសត្វ។

បន្ទាប់ពី គាត់ មាន លុយ គាត់ បាន ទៅ។
គាត់ ជិះ ម៉ូតូ។
បន្ទាប់ពី មួយ នាទី គាត់ មកដល់ នោ សួនសត្វ។

ខាងក្នុង - Inside
ខ្ជិល - Lazy
អ្ញុត - Iron (clothing)
សួរ - Ask
មកដល់ - Arrive

Music to Read Kant By, or, We're Not in Königsberg Anymore

Immanuel Kant

Hey, folks, 

It has been ages since I've blogged, but hey, I've had nothing to say.

Anyway, here is my short 2014 Spring Break Music Mix.  Unlike most spring break mixes, it isn't about party tracks and getting your groove on.  No, it is background music for the reading of Kant.

I created the mix so that I would have some background music while I study for my philosophy canonical exam--Plato, Aristotle, Spinoza, Kant, Hegel as well as the Bhasapariccheda and and Tattvasangraha.  It is a "world music mix."  It had to be something that was not distracting, either, and since most of my classical music is program music it did not fit the bill. 

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this and find it somewhat soothing background tunes for you, too.  And by the way--it is 40 minutes long, so you know it is time for a study break once it ends!

Just click on the image below to download the .zip file complete with a .m3u playlist.  Note that the music is in different file formats,  There is also a track listing below the picture.



Song             Artist                                                                                          

Abene            Telek (Papua New Guinea)
Misty Morning        Tony Rice (Bluegrass)
Farewell Wishes        Kong Nay (Cambodian)
Track One            Unknown Artist (Burmese)
Ek Lau            Performed by Shilpa Rao (Bollywood)
Ingkar Janji        Soendari Soekotjo (Javanese)
Koto & Shakuhachi Track    Unknown Artist (Japanese)
Picking Flowers        Lei Qiang (Chinese)
Kamalabham Bhajare    Prassana (Carnatic [Indian])
Ada Ada Dongen        Dengung Bali (Balinese)
For Julia            Sanjay Mishra (Contemporary/Indian)

Challenging Paradigms: Review of M. Aung-Thwin's "The Mists of Ramanna: The Legend That Was Lower Burma"

First of all, The Mists of Ramanna: The Legend That Was Lower Burma is not a text that expunges others from Burmese history as has been accused. The central and sensational claim of this book is that there was no Mon urban polity of Thaton (Ramanna/Suvarnabhumi) previous to the 14th century. A related claim is that therefore the Burmans inherited much of their culture from the earlier Pyu culture, not the Mons as had been previously assumed.

For centuries, scholars have assumed the existence of the polity of Thaton, identified also as Suvaṇṇabhumī or Râmaññadesa, a Mon kingdom located on the Tenasserim. This Mon state was thought to have predated the founding of Pagan by the Burmese by about a thousand years, the Mon state polity believed to have existed as early as the first century of the common era. It was assumed that the polity of Pagan, sitting on the banks of the Irrawaddy River in the plains known as the Burmese central dry zone, had actually absorbed much of its culture, Buddhism included, from the influence of Suvaṇṇabhumī and that it was artisans captured there and brought back to Pagan that gave the central Burmese society much of its material culture. This assumption has come under strong criticisms within the past decade in the scholarship of Micheal Aung-Thwin who convincingly argues there existed no Mon polity on the Tenasserim coast until centuries after the founding of Pagan.

Aung-Thwin develops his position around the facts that so far no archaeological evidence has been produced to demonstrate the existence of an early urban center on the Tenasserim coast and that it is not attested to until 1479. The first full account of its conquest by U Kala comes more than two hundred years after the city was first attested to in epigraphical sources, around 1724 in the Maha Yazawindawgyi, and more than six hundred years after the fact. Aung-Thwin argues at considerable length that the polity itself represents an "imagined polity," in part the conversion of a myth of legitimation into misremembered history within native sources, and the argument for its existence built largely but certainly not exclusively by non-Burmese scholars who assumed that accounts such as the Maha Yazawindawgyi and Hmannan Maha Yazawindawgyi where in fact reporting an accurate history of events. This became, Aung-Thwin argues, the "Mon Paradigm," an rather ill-supported assumption about distant history that distorts what little contemporary information we do have about that past. Aung-Thwin presents too an interesting analysis of the story of the invasion of Thaton as an allegory, again to serve the purpose of political legitimacy within the Theravāda Buddhist contexts. While scholars such as Donald Stadtner (2008) have devoted considerable attention to discrediting Aung-Thwin's theory, so far nothing counting as definitive counter-evidence has been produced.

Because of the sensitivity of ethnohistory, particularly in a nation such as Burma that has had long-standing ethnic military conflict, the rejection of the Mon paradigm has drawn much ire particularly from academic and political opponents of the Burmese military junta and now, with the tentative transition to a representative democracy, to Burmese political domination (although armed ethnic conflict continues unabated in Burma). Clearly this is reflected in many of the reviews of this text. Given the evidence, however, and Aung-Thwin's painstaking reconstruction of the historiography of Suvaṇṇabhumī in Burmese and Western histories, this scholarship cannot be reduced to some politicized vision of the past, and it certainly can long longer be assumed that a Mon polity existed there as early as the alleged invasion by Anawrahta Minsaw. While future evidence may in fact discredit Aung-Thwin's thesis, it would be intellectually irresponsible to dismiss it merely because it doesn't accord with histories produced in the past or visions of the present and future.

Most links go to Wikipedia articles, with  Donald Stadtner link going to a YouTube lecture on "Sacred Sites of Burma." 

Back in God's Country

Cave Run Lake--from Flickr, not my photo!
I've been back in Kentucky for a little more than a month now.  There is not much to say except I've been eating great food from the garden and wild game from the surrounding countryside.  I'm exercising a lot, given I have a bit more time, looking for teaching jobs to pad my scholarship for the fall, and reading, reading, reading.

One of the fantastic things about Sharkey is its proximity to Cave Run Lake.  While I have not gotten to swim nearly as much as I imagined I would, I have gotten to go for some great trail runs (thank you Vibrams for saving my knees) through the Daniel Boone National Forest.  It is a bit sad that those are all alone--my wife's idea of fun is not running at breakneck speed for six or ten miles through the forest.

My goal was to read two books per week from June 1 to August 1.  I've fallen behind on that but not by too terribly much.  I was far too optomistic to think I could produce six or more of the philosopher videos.  I will finish one; I may possibly complete two.  To create well produced videos (and just for Web consumption) turned into a much larger and more demanding project that I initially supposed. 

I have a few books to my credit this summer, but I haven't accomplished as much as my ambitious goals urged me to.  I have finished two books on Ismaili history and thought; one, The Assassins, was not the best; it was written for a popular audience and not as faithful to the facts as I would have liked although I much admire the author, Bernard Lewis.  I read his The Arabs in History summer before last and thought it was wonderful (much better than Armstrong's A Short History of Islam which I read at the same time and thought was trashy).  The much better text on the Ismailis that I read was by Farhad Daftary,  A Short History of the Ismailis: Traditions of a Muslim Community , an excellent text I highly recommend and one that increased my understanding of the philosophy of Nasir al-Din al-Tusi considerably even though his thought was not specifically addressed. I also have a great collection of articles to read, also edited by Farhad Daftary, Mediaeval Isma'ili History and Thought.

I've read more than 100 pages (about 35%) of the Routledge Philosophy GuideBook to Kant and the
This fellow is now ready to be made into soup--here are
the two recipes I'm going to make: Turtle Soup Recipes
Critique of Pure Reason.  That is not a painless venture, and I figure that I might get it finished in another three weeks or four.  I've also begun the collection of articles that make up the book Apoha: Buddhist Nominalism and Human Cognition since that will no doubt play a role in my research and dissertation work.  I also have the classic translation of Vasubandu's presentation of the anatman theory of no-self of the Sarvāstivādins in Theodore Stcherbatsky's translation as The Soul Theory of the Buddhists ; With Sanskrit Text and John Vattanky's Nyaya Philosophy of Language (translation of selections from the Muktavali with some commentary texts). I have a book review on a book on Saul Kripke's philosophy to write (so I need to read that) and lots of articles about properties, mostly from Universals, Concepts And Qualities: New Essays on the Meaning of Predicates, that I've brought with me.  Those and maybe a bit more secondary reading on Aristotle's metaphysics is all the philosophy reading that is going to happen over the next seven weeks or so.  I have a few secondary texts on qiyās, or analogical reasoning in Islamic legal thought, that I am sure I will work in.

I did finish The Indonesian Language: Its History and Role in Modern Society by Sneddon, The Modern Anthropology of South-East Asia: An Introduction by King and Wilder as well as Pagan: The Origins of Modern Burma by one of my professors in the fall as well as coordinator of the Southeast Asia Studies program, Michael Aung-Thwin.  He is a controversial figure in Burmese studies, but none the less I look forward to learning with him.  I've been neglecting my Sanskrit and Indonesian studies as well as my Khmer, but I will pick those back up with a passion next week.  I've been going through boxes of things I have in storage here in Kentucky to eliminate things and have had to resist bringing any of the dozens of books on Tamil or Russian back to Honolulu with me.  From this point on, my stuff needs to be navigating in the opposite direction since professorships usually don't include generous relocation costs into their offers.

Right now, we are in the midst of planning a family-only "wedding reception."  Of course, Peou and I have had three "weddings" or more properly two weddings and one marriage.  But we are doing it yet again, Western style (some of my relatives thought when I said this I meant a cowboy-themed wedding, which I understand--I mean American).  So tomorrow I go to pick up a three-tiered cake, Peou has an astonishingly expensive dress for something that is to be worn once, and we have enough food for several Thanksgivings sans turkey.  Pictures will be forthcoming.

Image of a nat
The aforementioned readings have inspired me to read more classical Southeast Asian anthropology as well.   I would say that I have a pretty good grasp on the area as a whole since that has been brain fodder for me for years and I studied under some quite well known folks in the past in Malaysia, but there are a few classics I've never read.  I have Sir Richard Carnac Temple's 1906 text, The Thirty-seven Nats: A Phase of Spirit-worship Prevailing in Burma (free canned .pdf copy from Google Books), which is still being used as a source, Spiro's Buddhism and Society (I found notes from reading his Burmese Supernaturalism for the first time dated to 2001), and Stanley Tambiah's (one of my favorite scholars whom I know mostly through his work on the Sri Lanka conflict) Buddhism and the Spirit Cults in North-East Thailand.  I may get through one of those over the summer, but they look like future reading.  I'll get to his World Conqueror and World Renouncer: A Study of Buddhism and Polity in Thailand against a Historical Background next year when I begin working on the Thai chapter of my Buddhism and war book, but I cannot believe I have not read it yet, actually. 

I did reread the Gitanjali.  I'm worried I am not going to get to my fiction, but maybe I can work at least one in on the plane ride back to Honolulu if I can stay awake!

Well, speaking of waking, I have to wake up in the morning and go buy ice and a wedding cake before my third wedding, so I will draw this to a close now.  But here is my word for the day; I had to look it up, and I am putting it here in hopes of remembering it!


Adjective:  concerning, belonging to, or inhabiting the underworld.

Sneak Peak at Introduction to Nasir al-Din al-Tusi

Here is just a sneak peak at the first 3:30 minutes of the sorts of introductions to philosophy video I am making with Mr. Aaron Christian (my nephew) this summer.  This one is about the Ismaili philosopher al-Tusi.  This is NOT the actual soundtrack--what you are hearing is just a rough voice over to ensure that the timing of the images aligns with the script.  Places where their is just a slide will be replaced with live video of yours truly. 

The main idea is to succinctly introduce some philosophers or philosophical schools that typically are less well known in the United States even in philosophical circles.  These videos could be used (as assignments, perhaps) as an introduction to the philosopher, their cultural milieu where appropriate, as well as some of the pertinent philosophical ideas.  The audience is basically those with philosophical interests but no knowledge of the philosopher (for this video, think an introduction to Islamic philosophy course or any course introducing al-Tusi for the first time).   For example, in this introduction to al-Tusi, first the historical context and development of Nizāri Ismāʿīlī sets the stage.  Then al-Tusi's own fascinating life story will be overviewed.  Finally, the philosophical conviction that a teacher (and an imam) is needed to make spiritual progress will be presented through the philosophical concepts of  bāṭin and ẓāhir.   At that point philosophy gets introduced but still in a fairly simple manner. 

Part of that work carried out by al-Tūsī while at Alamūt was the defense of the institution of the imān and practice of taʻlim, one of critical importance to Shī‘a thought in general but of particular importance to the Nizāri Ismāʿīlīs who are sometimes termed “esoteric Shī‘a” because of their emphasis of bāṭin over zāhir. These two terms are applied to the “inner” and “outer” meaning of the Qur’ān within the field of Qur’ānic exegesis. Bāṭin indicates the esoteric meaning of a text while ẓāhir indicates the exoteric.1 The idea here is that there are “hidden meanings” in the text that can only be revealed to either an intellectual elite who can ferret out such hidden meanings, or perhaps more commonly, to the initiate who is guided to understand the meaning through a teacher or spiritual guide, the muʻallim. These individuals knowledge ultimately rests on supraknowledgeable guides, or khawass, who are the sole legitimate source of tawīl, one of the tools of Qur’ānic interpretation and exegesis (tafsīr) in which the meaning and implications of a word meaning is explained. So while the Qur’ān was available to anyone who could comprehend Arabic, the Ismāʿīlīs believed that its meaning was, however, obscured except to the khawass and hence in seeking to understand the hidden meaning of the text, the bāṭin, seekers had to be initiated into the cult of the Ismāʿīlīs and obtain a knowledgeable spiritual guide.

There is an incredible amount of work that goes into every second of a video like this: average development of online learning materials is 1 hour to 1 minute of instruction, which is about right--at least two days to make one 15 minute video, and I'd say 3 days to make a 20 minute one.  Anyway, things will be easier when I can get in front of the camera and talk a little bit without doing just visuals. That will all come later, as well as a soundtrack that doesn't have the fan going in the background!  The rest of this cannot be completed until I am with Aaron.  He will be doing all of the filming for the parts where I am on screen and will increasingly help with the editing once he learns his way around the software some more.  

Anyway, it should be a fun set of summer projects, ones I can hopefully use in my own classes in the future, and also a great set of materials for my teaching portfolio.

The difference may also be classified as one between “true meaning” or figurative or metaphorical meaning and literal meaning.

Our Privacy Policy