Sunday, April 10, 2011

Chinese written language is an axiomatic system.


Now, I will show that Chinese written system is an axiom system one step at the time. For every axiom (formal) system, it consists of the following parts.

* Some members (in finite number or in infinity) -- they can be called as "symbols."
* Some undefined terms.
* Some definitions (including operations, function, etc.).
* Some axioms (including inference rules, derivation procedure, etc.)

All the above are arbitrarily given, and they do not have any true-false value. The undefined terms are understood in the context of the entire system although not by any clear cut definitions. In a sense, the undefined terms are also defined, by the entire system. This is the four part expression (or nutshell expression) for a formal system.

From the above, something can be produced.
1. String or sentence -- the composite of symbols via some operations (or functions).
2. Theorem or law -- a sentence which is derived from definitions and/or axioms.

By proving every statement (sentence, theorem or law) is true, that entire axiom system will be true. Although the truthfulness of a system can be tested with an 100% testing, however, it is not a science. In science, the truthfulness of a system must be proved with either induction or deduction (universal) proof. The deduction proof requires a two or three steps procedure.

a) Existential Introduction --- to show that a statement (premise, sentence, theorem or law) is true, at least, on one instance.
b) Existential generalization --- to show that a statement is true on “more than one” instances.
c) Universal proof --- for an “arbitrarily” chosen word, that statement is true.

By showing a) and b), that statement is already true in a sub-domain of the system. Thus, in every theorem or law of this new Chinese etymology, I will show at least two examples.

After every theorem and law are proved for this system, we can then compare this axiomatic system to the actual Chinese written word universe. If the system encompasses the entire universe, then it is a complete theory. If it does not encompass the entire word universe, it is still a partial theory. But, more work is needed to enlarge the system.

I have proved that the two premises below are true in, at least, a sub-domain of the Chinese word set universe with both Existential Introduction and Existential generalization.

i. Premise one ---- All (each and every) Chinese words are composed of from 220 roots.
ii. Premise two ---- The meaning of every Chinese word can be read out from its face.

Now, I will show more details about these two premises. From these two premises, the meaning of every Chinese word can be read out with the following 6 step procedure.

1. Step A --- the word
2. Step B --- the dissection of the word. The word should be dissected to its semantic parts (roots, compound roots, radicals, etc.), not all the way to root level.
3. Step C --- read out a static scene. Those semantic parts form a static scene.
4. Step D --- decoding. Read out a meaning from this static scene. This is the original meaning for the word. A set of reading procedure is needed for this.
5. Step E --- the usage or the current meaning. The usage of a word can be quite different from its original meaning. The current meaning of a word can be looked up in a (any) dictionary.

6. Step F --- the inferring pathway from D to E. There are many pathways on this. The followings are the major ones.
a. Direct --- D ~ E. There is not much difference between D and E.
b. One step consequence --- D to E. This step is intuitive or easily understood.
c. Many step consequence --- D to and to E. These steps might involve culture (philosophy, history, etc.) knowledge.
d. Phonetic loan --- the meaning of the word is anchored by a sound tag.
e. Pointing or assignment --- the meaning of the word is pointed out by …. There are more details on this.
f. Borrowing --- a word is borrowed to represent a different word. This is the most difficult issue.
g. Compound step --- it consists of more than one pathway.

I will, now, show one example.
For the word 亥, it is composed of three roots.
Step B --- dissection
i. Root 97 which is the shared radical of (亢, 六, 玄, 文, 亡, 亦), that is, one dot (') over a line (一), and it means "heavenly virtue or heavenly power." Note -- this root is not a standalone word; so it cannot be printed out.
ii. root 100 which is 女, woman or girl.
iii. root 96 which is 人, here means male man.
Please note that the top two roots are fused in the word 亥. The root fusion is an important issue in this Chinese etymology.

Step C --- static scene. A woman is on top of a man which is heavenly virtue. This scene is about woman/man copulation.
Step D --- decoding. The woman/man copulation represents the essence of the heavenly virtue.
Step E --- the usage. It indicates the 12th of ... hour, day, month, year, etc..
Step F --- the inferring pathway. Pointing or assignment.

While the usage of a word can often quite different from its original meaning, its original meaning remains in the DNA inheritance. That is, in its descendant words, the original meaning remains. For example,
核 (the seed of a fruit) is 木 (tree) + 亥 (essence).
該 (should be or ought to) is 言 (speech or words) + 亥 (essence). The essential words are the words which should be obeyed.

Now, I have showed,
1. The dissection and decoding procedure.
2. The root fusion.
3. The DNA inheritance.

Tienzen (Jeh-Tween) Gong
http://www.chinese-word-roots.org/

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