In fact, in the above case even though structures from the traditional Basque image schemata (TBIS) are operating in the sentence, it appears to utilize a commonplace color-coded element from the CEIS cognitive grid. This appearance leads to a mis-reading by the cultural outsider, a reading that will result in a serious mis-apprehension of the sentence's intended meaning. Indeed, the outsider's unfamiliarity with the conceptual apparatus at work will produce the following result: the underlying complexity of the meanings embedded in the TBIS coded statement will go totally unnoticed. This effect can be explained by the fact that such an outsider is normally competent only in interpreting image schemata from his/her own cultural system, the CEIS. Thus, s/he works with a different logic of metaphorical understandings, a different conceptual framework, in which only certain things "count" as part of the mapping, and they "count" only in certain systematic ways (Turner 1991: 175).
These apparently obvious understandings are culturally grounded. In such readings of metaphor, what will be highlighted, attended to cognitively, is determined by the degree to which the individual has acquired and internalized the image schemata structure belonging to and produced by the linguistically grounded social praxis of the group in question. The acquisition and internalization of such metaphoric understandings are one of the measures of an individual's acculturation and ultimate identification with the cognitive norms of his/her socio-linguistic group. It is the acceptance or at least tacit recognition of these image schemata that allows for communication, for shared meanings. In contrast, in the case of two systems that are in some fashion non-commensurate, such as the CEIS and TBIS, it is possible that in a given communicative situation, such as the one mentioned above, the cultural outsider will draw, quite automatically, on his/her interpretive competency based on the cognitive grid provided by the CEIS and the culturally backgrounded meanings found in it. Since these metaphoric understandings are for the most part automatic, non-reflective, and, hence, not based on extended discursive commentary, such an individual will not necessarily be aware of his/her mis-apprehension of what is happening in the communicative situation. Because of this fact at this juncture in reference to the meanings coded into our sample affirmative sentence ("Yes, in Euskal Herria there is a black sheep in every flock"), there are still two readings, one based on the interpretive competency of the reader who has been acculturated by the metaphoric understandings coded into CEIS and yet another based on the understandings of a person familiar with the backgrounded meanings embedded in the TBIS. The reasons behind these conflicting interpretations will be analyzed in the present paper.
Over the past centuries such mis-readings have occurred in the case of many outsiders (non-Basque-speakers). For example, although monocultural in terms of their ability to read the metaphoric meanings color-coded visually into Basque performance art, such the "Blacks and the Reds" found in the Pastoralak and Maskaradak, such researchers, nonetheless, have considered themselves fully capable of understanding what is going on by relying only on their own familiarity with the metaphoric repertoire of the CEIS, structures themselves grounded in the earlier cultural model known as the Great Chain of Being (Lakoff and Turner 1989).
Although to think metaphorically is automatic and conventional, it appears that certain metaphoric understandings cluster together, forming a set of interlocking and mutually reinforcing conceptual frames. In recent years it has become increasingly apparent that in Euskal Herria identities are in conflict. At the center of this ideological conflict it is question of the degree to which an individual accepts and internalizes a given interpretative grid, one provided by the root metaphors of his/her culture. It is the latter that determines his/her sense of identity, providing what Morgan has called "frames of self-representation" and, consequently, the cognitively backgrounded field of conceptual categories and related strategies upon which representations of ideology are played out, often quite unconsciously.
In order to illustrate the manner in which the root metaphors of the CEIS and the TBIS are non-commensurate yet oddly linked, the schemata in question can be brought forward for consideration. The first is based on the extended color-coded cultural model known as the Great Chain of Being and founded on oppositions between black and white. The second model, grounded in the TBIS, is based on the complementary color-coded opposition of black and red. The first model should not be understood as merely the inversion of the first, but rather as a radically different set of cognitive alignments. Morevoer, these alignments hearken back to earlier indigenous pan-European beliefs in the efficacy of the color black, its intrinsic epistemological grounding in notions of fecundity and wholeness as well as the positive role of black animals as Spirit Helper Guardians.
In short, in the case of Europe the powerful life-giving and protecting characteristics associated with the color black itself have been distorted, although not totally eradicated from the consciousness of Europeans by the Catholic Church and the Inquisition in their attempts to eliminate the earlier ecocentric cosmovision. In contrast to the hierarchical and anthropomorphic cultural model encountered and propagated by the CEIS, the root metaphors of the earlier schemata derive their vitality from an earlier pan-European ecocentric cosmovision, linked to the constellations of Great Bear and Little Bear, that held that humans descended from bears, a shamanistically-coded folk belief that is still alive and well in Euskal Herria as well as in the folkloric traditions of many other parts of Europe (Dentaletche 1982; Frank 1996; Praneuf 1989; Vukanovitch 1959).
The contrasting root metaphors of the CEIS and TBIS models can be illustrated by means of the following charts. In Fig 1 the CEIS color-coded polarities of black and white appear as oppositional and hierarchical: those linked to white being positive and higher than those of black. In Fig. 2 and 3 the TBIS metaphoric understandings are coded by means of the colors of black and red. These, rather than being hierarchical are complementary, equals representing two poles of being and reality.
BEASTS (ANIMALS) HUMAN BEINGS
BLACK > PURPLE > DARK (BLUE) RED
EXAMPLE: RED WINE IS CALLED BELTZA IN EUSKERA.
BRIGHT RED > ORANGE > YELLOWISH
EXAMPLE: AN EGG YOLK IS CALLED GORRINGO (GORRI-N-GO) IN EUSKERA.
BLACK ANIMALS ARE: LIFE GIVING AND HENCE
BRING GOOD LUCK,
INSURE GOOD HEALTH, AND
ACT AS HEALER-GUARDIANS
THUS, TO INSURE THE HEALTH OF EACH INDIVIDUAL GROUP OF DOMESTIC ANIMALS, THE RECOMMENDATION WAS TO HAVE:
ONE BLACK SHEEP PER FLOCK,
ONE BLACK RABBIT PER HUTCH,
ONE BLACK CHICKEN, ETC.
OTHER QUALITIES ASSOCIATED WITH THE COLOR BLACK: BELTZA
MOREOVER, THERE ARE TWO ANIMALS OF SPECIAL NOTE:
1) THE BEAR = THE PSYCHOPOMPE ANCESTOR AND KEEPER GUARDIAN-HEALER OF ALL BEINGS.
THUS, TO INSURE THE HEALTH AND WELL BEING OF ALL BEINGS AND THE ORDER OF THE COSMOS, WORLD RENEWAL CEREMONIES INVOLVING THE BEAR ANCESTORS WERE CARRIED OUT ON AN ANNUAL BASIS.
2) THE BLACK HE-GOAT = KEEPER GUARDIAN-HEALER OF ALL DOMESTIC ANIMALS.
THUS, TO INSURE THE HEALTH AND WELL BEING OF DOMESTIC ANIMALS, THE RECOMMENDATION WAS TO HAVE:
ONE BLACK HE-GOAT PER FARMSTEAD
HUMBLE PRIDEFUL, ARROGANT
VITALITY, GOOD HEALTH ILLNESS, FEVER
WHOLENESS, PLENITUDE LACK, MISERY, PAIN
PLAYFUL, MISCHIEVOUS IRASCIBLE, UNBENDING
FLEXIBLE, ADAPTABLE INFLEXIBLE, RIGID
DISRUPTIVE OF (EXCESSIVE) ORDER ORDERLY
In summary, the data brought forward in this study form part of a larger project
dedicated to the recuperation of the metaphysics embedded in what we allege was an
earlier ecocentric pan-European cosmovision. Of particular interest to us has been
the analysis of image schemata functioning in a set of contemporary folk performances
encountered across much of Europe, most particularly those involving human actors
dressed as bears who function as healers, bringers of good heath, along with other
performers with a similar function, dressed in black. The present document discusses
some of our results and the reasons for which we argue that the TBIS found in Euskera
should not be understood as an isolated survival, but rather as perhaps the best
preserved exemplar of the metaphysical foundations and root metaphors embedded in
this earlier, yet still recoverable, European cosmovision.