Cuture Issue?
(01-07-2014, 09:39 PM)Clare Brigid Wrote: Favorable climate and resources permitted them to continue their simpler way of life.

Bingo. There is a narrow band of resource scarcity that encourages the development of sophistication. When resources are too abundant there is no incentive to develop civilizational complexity; when they are too scarce there is no ability to do so.
(01-07-2014, 11:37 PM)Crusading Philologist Wrote: Explanations that attribute everything to one factor seem to me to be reductionist. I imagine it is a mixture of things like geography, climate, culture, and so forth. Given what we now know, it strikes me as a bit superstitious to think that heredity does not also play at least some role. Of course, even "primitive" cultures have unique and valuable practices and institutions and are very important to those raised in those cultures, no matter how inferior they might seem to outsiders, so we shouldn't imagine that there is only one scale with which to judge every society. 

This--and that.
(01-08-2014, 02:15 AM)Vox Clamantis Wrote: Even beyond the Church setting up universities is the fact that the Holy Faith sets folks up for Science while pantheism and animism and so forth don't. We know God is, that He (and objective reality) exist, that He (and reality) are knowable and operate according to laws, isn't capricious, etc. Without those basic ideas, you're sort of stuck. The American Indians didn't even have the wheel for crying out loud.

And the other HUGE boon is patriarchy. In Africa and among a lot of North American Indian tribes, matriarchy was the thing. See this book to learn why that dooms a people to primitive conditions, how without patriarchy, we're living in caves and grass huts:

Yes, I agree.

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