Daniel Yokota | March 28, 2009 at 1:05 pm | Reply

http://heritageofjapan.wordpress.com/ju … comment-82

We have plenty of archaeological evidence indicating that war was not a significant or institutionalized activity among the Jomon people. For one thing, there are no weapons specifically designed to kill human beings. There are hunting tools like bow and arrow with stone projectiles – which, of course, can also kill humans – but there are no swords, no shields, no helmets, no armor or other combat gear, no pictures or sculptures recording battle scenes, no monuments to glorify warriors, no man-made structures that even remotely resemble a fortress or garrison, no walls that meander across the surface of the earth. Jomon people never developed the concept of a political state, nor did they have a concept of education. Children grew up by simply imitating the adults, persons who were at once self-reliant individuals and cooperative community members. Their economy did not require collaboration of more persons than there were in the local group, and the principal occasions for members of one group to meet those of others were centered around trade relations, intermarriage, and perhaps festivals. Their egalitarian society was based on matrilineal extended families within a tribal network (as is typical for many Neolithic cultures throughout the world). Agriculture had not developed beyond little gardens and so there was no need to fight over land or resources. They left behind the works of a rich material culture characterized by proliferatingly decorated pottery, terracotta sculptures, and stone circles. This was possible because they lived by what we call a “Paleolithic Rhythm”, meaning one or two days of work for living followed by two or three days of leisure. This in turn means that their natural environment was fairly rich in food and other basic resources to satisfy their needs and many of their wants (if people have to struggle hard for daily survival, they simply don’t create much of a culture).