> I have long suspected that this might have had something to do
> with the selection of certain ancient sites, but having no
> background in neurobiology, I could not make a positive
> correlation. This first occurred to me back when I was
> researching the meteorite shrines scattered around Texas. Since
> the original impacts had been well before it was thought the
> areas had been populated, it did not seem that it was a matter
> of collective memory, though as the dates of human presence
> keep getting further back, it is possible that that may have
> been a factor in at least some cases. An impact crater near
> Faiyum Oasis shows habitation back to Neanderthal times but
> whether that was due to the availability of water or the impact
> event is a matter of speculation. Water was not that scarce
> back then but all these old camps were perforce near a
> convenient source.
> That little navigational instrument in our noses, a speck of
> metal, no doubt had some effect upon the prehistoric
> colonizers, especially in locations, such as ours, that have
> high concentrations of magnetic iron ore. Extremely old igneous
> formations such as the batholiths like Enchanted Rock near
> Fredricksburg, Texas probably contain some of the radioactive
> minerals found at Barringer Hill. This may or may not have a
> bearing on the "ghost lights" observed since the mid-19th
> century there and at another formation near Marathon, Texas.
> Tectonic movement in quartz bearing formations near Abilene,
> Texas and Milburn, Oklahoma has been demonstrated in lab
> experiments to produce these "ghost lights" as well. A
> combination of these factors led me to start thinking that
> geology had something to do with cultural associations and
> selection of these locations.
The speck of metal in our noses theory is still hotly debated. Many scientists say they can't duplicate the results of the first study, but they've since discovered a magnetoreceptive protein called crytpochrome 2 in the human eye.
We don't know yet why or how it works, but like many issues in biology, this one may well operate at the quantum level. They don't yet understand how or why it works in animals; small wonder if they don't understand how it works in us. Deviations in electromagnetism and changes in gravity also affect plant growth (called gravitropism. What is clear, though, is that some people are sensitive to very low frequency electromagnetism. I personally have experienced it twice...I say that because I don't know what else could have caused it. The first time was at Chichen Itza in Mexico, although whether that was from electromagnetism or the adrenaline rush of climbing it, I can't really say for sure. The second time was right before the earthquake in Quebec a couple of years ago.
Magnetoreception or magnetosensitivity is found all throughout the domains of life, from bacteria to plants to fish to birds. I have a hard time believing we didn't retain something of that.