Archive for archeology

Heaven in Turmoil

Posted in agnoticism, Astronomy, Atheism, Atheist, belief, Bible, culture, faith, history, life, prehistory, random, religion, science, thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 23, 2010 by chouck017894

Curiosities abound throughout the “authorized” accounts of humankind’s history.  Few, however, are as baffling as to why the celestial body we know as planet Venus suddenly became the object of worldwide attention around the general timeframe 1650-1600 BCE.  In this timeframe the Babylonians were well-schooled in mathematics, calculations, algebra, and quadratic equations, and they had become increasingly nervous about disturbances taking place in the heavens.  Astronomical records were being kept in the reign of Ammisaduga, and from these it is clear that astronomers were fully aware that the routine rotation of stars around Earth was an illusion that was caused by Earth revolving on it own axis.  The plotting of heavenly mechanics such as the equinoxes and solstices were routine to them. 

So it was a situation of uneasiness to witness the looming presence in the sky of an unknown celestial object—especially since its presence coincided with an alteration in Earth’s rotation and tilt.  And there was also the small matter of the volcanic mountain Stroggili on the Isle of Thera (Santorin) having erupted in the Mediterranean—one of the planet’s oversized volcanic eruptions.  It was in this period that the new celestial entity began being addressed as a deity—a goddess of awesome beauty and terrifying power—an awe and fear that would possess the people of the world for many generations.  Indeed, this period of frightening and dramatic celestial changes is attested to in later Roman literature, such as the book Of The Race of the Roman People by Marcus Varro.  In this book the author related that the planet we know as Venus had “…changed its color, size , form, course, which had not happened before nor since…”  Varro backed up his account saying that renowned astronomers affirmed that the event had indeed happened to the “Morning star,” and it had never happened before or  since.  Varro also noted, “…we read from the divine books that even the sun itself stood still when a holy man Joshua, the son of Nun, had begged this from God.”  Let us note here that even “saint”  Augustine quoted from this man’s book. 

The timeframe in question here, c. 1600s BCE, is another period that has often been accepted as the period-setting for the Exodus story—as well as being the “time of Agog,” who allegedly laid the foundation of Thebes (Egypt).  It can be understood how recollections of such chaotic events could be confused, condensed and intermingled by later historians.  There is, as example, a Samaritan chronicle that relates that during the time period in which Joshua supposedly led an invasion into Canaan a new star was born in the east.   If this star-birth event took place in the time allotted to Joshua, then it predates the timeframe for the Moses tale by centuries.  The Samaritan account of the new star said it held power “against which all magic is vain.”  That pretty much discredits the claim that Joshua had any influence over the heavenly bombardment that took place. 

Of interest  in connection with this are the findings unearthed by recent archeologists that confirm that events of the Joshua story were in reference to celestial conditions and activities that took place earlier than events that make up the Moses epic.  The later priest-historians at work  in Jerusalem (c. 800 BCE) found it more beneficial to their purpose to reinterpret past events to provide themselves with a history that supported their claim to authority. 

There are other scriptural stories that tell of these heavenly happening and the continuing threats from the heavens that went on for generations.  Approximately fifty-two years after c. 1600 BCE, or around 1548, the celestial body that had so traumatized Earth seems to have emerged out of decades of clouded skies to appear as a radiant new member of the solar family—that is to say it had attained a fairly orderly orbital pattern among the neighboring planets. The Assyrians called the new planet Ishtar: the Greeks called it Aphrodite: the ancient Mexican records name it Quetzalcoatl: and the Romans would call it Venus. 

The heavens were not yet peaceful, however, and Earth had more to endure.  The awe and fear that the new planet still inspired is shown in it being addressed as beautiful but fearsome celestial deity.  Even some 750 years later(c. 800 BCE) the new planet still exerted strong influence upon planet Earth to trigger exogenous disturbances in Earth’s rotation, which coincided with a  reverse in Earth’s magnetic field.  And this is the timeframe of the “prophet” Isaiah who had this to say about the adjustment of the new-neighbor planet: “How art thou fallen from heaven O Lucifer (Venus), son of the morning!  How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” (Isaiah 14:12-13)

Even as late as c. 606 BCE, the timeframe of the “prophet” Jeremiah, the inhabitants of Earth were still apprehensive of the orbital irregularities of planets Venus and Mars—for the Venus intrusion had serious effect on the orbit of the once peaceful Mars.  In this period, even in spite of the recent Babylonian invasion and destruction of Jerusalem, the Jews still gave Venus devotion as “queen of heaven” and burned incense and offered wine to her on the roofs of buildings.  Jeremiah was an astronomer, and was portrayed as a “prophet” simply because he could chart the likely times of violent planetary interactions.  Thus in the book of Jeremiah, chapter 44, the account says all the men knew that their wives had burnt incense unto other gods (meaning to Venus).  And the women adamantly continued to “burn incense unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our father, our kings, and our  princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem…”

Reference to the heavens once being in disarray can be found in many ancient records and texts.  And even when they are part of accounts deemed sacred there is a peculiar self-inflicted blindness that such planetary caroming through the skies could have once taken place.  Even today’s science denies it.  And the heavens remain indifferent at mankind’s lack of curiosity.

Science on Clay Feet

Posted in history, prehistory, science with tags , , , , , , on April 4, 2009 by chouck017894

Unfortunately, science shares a number of nasty little habits that religion and politics have indulged in for millennia: the practice of suppressing or even disposing of evidence that runs contrary to the line of belief (theories) that they have put in place as being unquestionable fact. As in religion and politics, it is the fundamentalists of science that labor at obscuring truth to protect their financial and directional authority.

Making dogmatic pronouncements by persons held to be authorities in their field of interest betrays their loyalty to that discipline by doing so, for no line of science can remain a true research branch if it closes and locks a door of investigation. If the theorists truly hold a key to some truth then they should have no fear of questions or of further investigation. Equally deplorable are the scientists who refuse to look through–let alone step through–a door into something that is prejudged by them as too “outrageous” to even consider. More often than not such scientists–like the religionists and politicians–haven’t actually bothered to study the proposed investigation that they so freely criticize.

In the disciplines of archeology and anthropology, for example, it is held as fact that the anatomically modern human species could not have existed any longer ago than a few hundred thousand years. The theory has been that if such human beings existed million of years ago in parallel with primitive humanoids, then physical remains should have been found from sites known to be 300,000 to 400,000 years old, which could suggest the possibility of anatomically modern human’s being present before that time.  That theory of timeline for human development on this planet seems a bit too compressed, however.  But peer review literature acts as a knowledge filter which slowly and cautiously makes update corrections–a process that is constantly repeated. As example, in 1970 a new dating techinque revealed that tools found at a site in Ethiopia were at very minimum 176,000 years old–which set human presence on Earth back another 80,000 years.

A few little questions are raised in the opening of Time Frames and Taboo Data: A History of Mankind’s Misdirected Beliefs that anthropologists and archeologists shrug off. There have been found in 2.8
billion year-old rocks from South Africa hundreds of sphere-shaped metal objects, some slightly flattened on opposite ends and with three perfectly formed grooves encircling their center. There are two types of these objects. The more oval type is bluish-red with fiber-like flecks in the metal. The truly awesome thing about this type of sphere is that they were fashioned to be held in the hand and they have the ability to revolve on its own axis!

Okay, so that’s way too early for any intelligent exploration of planet Earth, right? Well then, what about a mere 200 million years ago? The Triassic Period? How could an imprint of a shoe sole–complete with tracing of stiches–exist in calcareous rock of that period? But it does: in Fisher Canyon in Pershing County, Nevada!

And what about a stele found at Quiriga in Guatemala that bears computations for its erection dated only 90 million year ago?

Are puzzles like these going to be scientifically pursued anytime soon? Don’t hold your breath.