We warmly welcome Michael Le Flem, author of Visions of Atlantis: Reclaiming our Lost Ancient Legacy, as our featured author this month. Michael’s book dives deep into the age-old story of Atlantis and how it has evolved throughout the ages —from the seminal account passed down by Plato almost 2,400 years ago to those of the present day. Michael’s book engages with the Atlantean mystery’s most vigorous proponents and harshest critics to uncover fact from fiction and discover what parts have been obscured by the lens of time.
In his article, Michael introduces some mysteries surrounding the inherited legacy of Atlantis that have shown up in surprising places throughout history, calling into question deeply held beliefs about ancient technology, psychic phenomena, reincarnation, and the vast unknown past.
Interact with Michael on our AoM forum here.
“Hands down the most comprehensive investigation into Atlantis I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading.”
— RN Vooght, author of Searching for Osiris and the Tree of Life
“Michael’s passion for Atlantis is infectious.”
— Sean Stone, author of New World Order: A Strategy of Imperialism
“Le Flem delivers a masterclass of essential history on the lessons we really do need to heed. Highly recommended!”
— David Jones, Editor, New Dawn Magazine
“Visions of Atlantis fuses disparate historical sources with a logical, open-minded analysis of a topic that triggers most academics into automatic shutdown. Your Atlantis collection isn’t complete without this.”
— Brendan D. Murphy, author of The Grand Illusion: A Synthesis of Science and Spirituality
THE MYTH OF THE AGES
“Critias: Let me tell you this story then, Socrates. It’s a very strange one but even so, every word of it is true. It’s a story that Solon, the wisest of the seven sages once vouched for.”
Like much of the West’s purported knowledge of itself, the story of Atlantis (Ἀτλαντὶς), was passed down from a remote and murky past. In some of the most detailed surviving accounts from 360B.C., contained in two of Plato’s dialogues, Critias and Timaeus, the date of Atlantis’ fall is said to have been 9,000 years before the time of Solon, one of the first Athenian political reformers, who historians place as having lived from 630 to 560 B.C., resulting in a date of approximately 9,600B.C. for its final destruction.
This is the same date, curiously, that marks the end of the last Ice Age, and the beginning of our modern Holocene epoch, when the earth’s geographical and climatological patterns were dramatically altered, precipitating rapid sea level rise, glacial melting, and vast migrations of extant animal and human populations. According to mainstream historians -despite the unearthing of Göbekli Tepe and its subsequent dating to at least 10,000 B.C. – nothing approaching even basic civilization is said to have existed at this time anywhere on earth. The Egyptian temple priests told Solon, “There is a story which even you have preserved, that once upon a time Phaethon, the son of Helios, having yoked the steeds in his father’s chariot, because he was not able to drive them in the path of his father, burnt up all that was upon the earth, and was himself destroyed by a thunderbolt. Now, this has the form of a myth, but really signifies a declination of the bodies moving around the earth and in the heavens, and a great conflagration of things upon the earth at long intervals of time: when this happens, those who live upon the mountains and in dry and lofty places are more liable to destruction than those who dwell by rivers or on the sea-shore; and from this calamity the Nile, who is our never-failing savior, saves and delivers us.”1
The priest also reminds Solon, “And whatever happened either in your country or in ours, or in any other region of which we are informed—if any action which is noble or great, or in any other way remarkable has taken place, all that has been written down of old, and is preserved in our temples; whereas you and other nations are just being provided with letters and the other things which States require; and then, at the usual period, the stream from heaven descends like a pestilence, and leaves only those of you who are destitute of letters and education; and thus you have to begin all over again as children, and know nothing of what happened in ancient times, either among us or among yourselves.”2
This statement alone should give us pause, as it details a cataclysmic celestial impact near 9,600B.C., almost the exact date our modern scientific consensus ascribes to the end of the last Ice Age. How did the Egyptians know this? How too did the Indian authors of the Mahabharata mark as a point of global cataclysm by flood the historical window spanning roughly 10,900B.C. to 9,680B.C. in their grand Yuga Cycle, which itself accurately details the 25,800 year precessional cycle of the earth’s equinoxes around the ecliptic confirmed by modern astronomy. This deadly 1,200-year window, as we shall see, was the setting of some of the most fascinating and detailed channeled accounts of Atlantis’s demise in the third and final destruction of the Atlantean civilization, whose principal landmass, according to Edgar Cayce’s and Frederick Oliver’s harrowing clairvoyant accounts, had been whittled down from a much larger continent spanning much of the Mid-Atlantic to five, and finally three, large islands over the course of nearly 30,000 years and multiple human-caused and natural cataclysms.
The final iteration of a desperate, technologically regressed Atlantean empire near 9,600B.C., hell-bent on a seaborne invasion of the Mediterranean, would be the iconic version detailed in Plato’s two dialogues, an Atlantis which had lost most of its high-technology after centuries of decline and abandonment, an important story arc which I explore in detail in Visions of Atlantis, through a close examination of some of the most rarefied and unlikely of sources.
Some in Plato’s circles likely felt much the way many mainstream scholars feel today: that he either cooked the whole thing up to bolster his idealized Athenian city-state as outlined in his Republic, or that he was naively taking at face value an actual fiction told to Solon by wily Egyptian priests all those years ago. Others felt he was telling some version of a lived historical reality, however distant it may have been. Yet as author Rodney Castleden observes, “Plato’s detractors have accused him of inventing the Atlantis myth in its entirety, but a book called Atlantis was written a century before. Unfortunately, only a fragment of Hellanicus’ Atlantis survives, including the line, ‘Poseidon mated with Celaeno, and their son Lycus was settled by his father in the Isles of the Blest and made immortal.’ This bears similarities with Plato’s account where Poseidon mates with Cleito and their son Atlas becomes the ruler of a marvelous land, while Hellanicus in turn may have taken the story from a still earlier Atlantis epic; alternatively, both may have drawn on Solon’s story, which may have had a wider currency in the sixth century than we now realize.”3
This is an important insight to consider going forward, as one of the most common recurring critiques of the account of Atlantis remains the allegation that it had a singular origin with Plato. But as I identify and explore in Visions of Atlantis, pre-Platonic sources do exist:
13th Century B.C. Turin King List (Egypt)
Lists ten “Aulitean” or “Auritean” god-kings who ruled in a “foreign land” during the “reign of the gods,” before approximately 9,850B.C. Plato mentioned that Atlantis was ruled by ten kings in his dialogues, and was destroyed around 9,600B.C.
1000-800 B.C. (approx.) Mahābhārata, Karna Parva (India)
Describes a ten-year war at the end of which the island of “Atala” and all of its inhabitants sank into the “Western Ocean.”
735 B.C. Hesiod, Theogony (Boeotia)
Recounts a story in which the Titans, after losing a ten-year war, were imprisoned in a “watery tomb” beneath the Atlantic Ocean.
590 B.C. Solon, “Atlantica” (Athens)
Solon’s lost epic poem “Atlantica” purportedly described the story of Atlantis in greater detail, which was possibly later condensed into the story described to us by Plato in his dialogues.
460 B.C. Hellanicus, Atlantis (Island of Lesbos)
A partially recovered chronology of the civilization largely lost to history. Hellanicus is considered by many to be one of the most reputable sources of antiquity, making it unlikely he would touch on the subject were it mere fiction.
430 B.C. Herodotus, The Histories (Halicarnassus)
“Now the Caspian Sea is by itself, not connected to the other sea; but the sea navigated by all the Greeks and the one outside the Pillars called the Atlantis Sea and Erythraean are one and the same.”
400 B.C. (approx.) Aelian, Varia Historia (Roman Republic)
He explains how Theopompus recorded an interview between the King of Phrygia and Silenus, during which Silenus referred to a great continent beyond the Atlantic, larger than Asia, Libya, and what was then known as Europe combined.
360 B.C. Plato, Critias/Timaeus (Athens)
The seminal account
Atlantis continued to haunt the Western imagination long after the decline of ancient Athens, the rise of Alexander the Great, and the intervening eight hundred years until the collapse of the Western Roman Empire at the end of the 5th Century A.D., but for brevity’s sake, let’s pick up the trail in the middle of the Renaissance, the age of Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo, during the great Age of Exploration, a time when notable and infamous 15th and 16th-century conquistadors and their bands of fortune seekers, missionaries and mercenaries set out for the New World in their roughshod wooden carracks, caravels and galleons under the resplendent pennants of their parent nations, preaching the cross and ruling by the sword. As the Americas were explored, exploited and mapped by Europeans, Atlantis once again found itself rising to the forefront of intellectual debates. Francisco López de Gómara, who wrote an account of Spanish exploits in his Historia General de los Indies, cited Plato’s Atlantis as a possible explanation for the new North American landmass and its Central American extension beyond the Yucatan. He noted that in indigenous tongues among the Mexica peoples, there were strange linguistic anomalies: “In Mexico also at this day they call that water Atl, [by the half name of Atlantis,] as by a word remaining of the name of the Island that is not.”4
Michel de Montaigne, who would become famous for his 1588 essay “On the Cannibals,” while convinced Plato’s account was factual, suggested that North America was not the principle Atlantean island after a close reading of the original text: “…it does not seem very likely that this new world we have just discovered was this island of Atlantis, for it almost touched Spain, and the effect of that inundation would have been incredible if it had pushed the island back to where the new world is, a distance of more than twelve hundred leagues. Besides, modern navigators have already made it almost certain that the new world is not an island but a mainland, connected on one side with the East Indies and on the other with the lands under the two poles.”5
Indeed, both scholars were circumscribing a debate that would rage for another five hundred years into the present. The island of Atlantis. The lost continent of Atlantis. The sunken “city” of Atlantis. We’ve heard all descriptors indiscriminately tossed about by true believers and skeptics alike. But a close reading of the original Platonic dialogues makes it fairly clear that the large island with its iconic circular capital city of the Atlantean empire was indeed just that and was situated somewhere “in front of the Pillars of Hercules,” or Straits of Gibraltar, likely where the Azores peak out of the Atlantic Ocean today, the former mountain tops of a larger, now-sunken landmass pictured in the map above. Much of what I attempted to do in Visions of Atlantis was reconcile these variations, which, I believe, all have a basis in reality, as evidence of the lost civilization is found the Atlantic world over, as Gómora correctly noted, and the Aztecs, whose legendary homeland was “Aztlan,” included in their pantheon a god who held aloft the sky, named Atlanteotl, a curious mirror-image of sorts to the Greek Titan who held aloft the earth, named Atlas. Yet these cultures, which are separated by 7,000 miles and the Atlantic Ocean, are supposed to have never communicated in antiquity.
VISIONS OF ATLANTIS
To access these more remote periods of Atlantis that neither Plato nor any extant records truly detail, which in my investigation stretch even beyond the 50,000+ B.C. range, when Atlantis was a much larger continental landmass later reduced after dozens of millennia to Plato’s Mid-Atlantic archipelago at the end of the last Ice Age, we must enter a world that many continue to deny holds any validity, but one which, upon closer inspection, may shed light on this otherwise inaccessible epoch: clairvoyance and remote, non-local viewing of the ancient past.
Frederick Spencer Oliver was a shy teenager who lived near Mount Shasta in Yreka, California, during the late 19th-century closing of the American frontier, the Wild West as it’s since been dramatized. Born in 1866, his family, like many enterprising folks of their ilk, came out to the dusty trails of northern California from Washington D.C. to prospect. According to his parents, one day, young Frederick found himself compelled by an unknown external influence to jot down messages about a past life in a remote epoch, a phenomenon often referred to as automatic writing via clairaudience. As Oliver explained, “For a year my occult preceptor educated me by means of ‘mental talks,’ and to such a point was my mind occupied by the many new thoughts with which he inspired me, that I paid no heed to my environment, worked automatically, if at all, studied and read not, and scarcely heard those who addressed my exterior senses.”6
What ended up causing him great distress and considerable difficulty when pressed by friends and family to explain the strange work taking shape before them would not see the light of day in his lifetime. Copyrighted and formatted by his mother, Mary, in 1894 and published in 1905, she had kept the hand-written, 420-page manuscript in a drawer after her son’s early passing in 1899 at the age of 33.
A Dweller on Two Planets or The Dividing of the Way, as Oliver titled the strange manuscript, purports to be a channeled revelation of a past life in Poseid, the principal island of the Atlantean empire, in the year 11,160 B.C., as told by Oliver’s “source,” Phylos. It also presents, if read closely, one of the most bizarre yet compelling and detailed visions of Atlantis ever put on paper, adding one of the only ground-level descriptions of daily life and technology before later early 20th-century occultists and clairvoyants began subsequent explorations.
Taken as fiction, the book often presents a frustrating, meandering narrative, with frequent soliloquies and continuity gaps that make it hard to recommend to readers accustomed to regular plot arcs. Taken at face value as a genuine window, however incredible, into the world in 11,160B.C., the book is an astoundingly detailed account; if you actually sit down and finish it, what you do find is a fantastical, almost Star Wars-themed cast of characters, a heartbreaking doomed love triangle with associated courtly drama and betrayal, and a truly fascinating concept of the soul and the physical sciences that is alone worth every bizarre page. Oliver also detailed a handful of scientific observations that in 1886 were not even known, claiming, for example, that the Amazon jungle was, in fact, a cultivated region during the end of the Ice Age, whose flora included Atlantean transplants. Interestingly, in 2020, the BBC published an article that stated: “This is Amazonia, this is one of these places that a few years ago we thought to be like a virgin forest, an untouched environment. Now we’re finding this evidence that people were living there 10,500 years ago, and they started practising cultivation. The researchers say it’s likely that the humans who lived here may have brought their plants with them.” 7
Sprinkled here and there are immensely complex and internally coherent observations of physical reality, extraordinary technology, and theories of polarity, electricity, gravity and magnetism that are difficult to explain even if they were penned by a teenage prodigy instead of an authentic channeled “source” or a secret contributor. Often, reviews of the book fail to cite the truly profound implications of many of the passages one has to dig through to appreciate, lamenting it as an awkward and turgid treatise on pseudo-science from a kid on the frontier with an overactive imagination, but as I detail in my chapters on the text, this casual dismissal is hard to maintain considering both the lack of motive (the book was never published in his lifetime) and coherence of his timeline and statements in light of recent discoveries. He even describes an Atlantean smartphone at one point, as well as a hand-held railgun. In 1886, mind you.
Take, for instance, Oliver’s description of Atlantean science at its peak around 11,160B.C.:
“I have said that the Atlans recognized Nature in its entirety to be Deity externalized. Their philosophy asserted that force moved, not in straight lines but in circles, that is, so as always to return into itself. If the dynamism operating the universe acts in circular progression, it follows that an infinity of increase in vibration possible to One Substance would be an untenable concept. There must be a point in the circle where extremes meet and run the round again, and this we find between cathodicity and magnetism. As vibration brought substance into the realm of light, it must carry it out. It does so. It conveys it into what the Poseidi termed ‘Navaz, the Night-Side of Nature,’ where duality becomes manifest, cold opposing heat, darkness light, and where positive polarity opposes negative, all things antipodal. Cold is as much a substantial entity as heat, and darkness as light. There is a prism of seven colors in each white ray of light; there is also a septuple prism of black entities in the blackest gloom—the night is as pregnant as the day.
The Poseid Investigator thus became cognizant of wondrous forces of nature which he might bend to the uses of mankind. Through this wisdom Atlantis found it possible to adjust weight (positiveness) to lack of weight (negativeness) so evenly that no ‘tug of war’ was manifest. This achievement meant much. It meant aerial navigation without wings or unwieldy gas-reservoirs, through taking advantage of repulsion by levitation opposed in overmatching strength to the attraction of gravitation. That vibration of the One Substance governed and composed all realms was a discovery which solved the problem of the conveyance of images of light, pictures of forms, as well as of sound and heat, just as the telephone thou knowest so well conveys images of sound, only in Poseid no wires or other sensible material connection was required in the use, at whatever distance, of either telephones or telephotes nor even in caloriveyance, that is, heat-conduction.
To digress a little, it is to the employment of these and the higher forces of the night-side that seemingly magic feats of occult adepts, from the Man of Nazareth down to the least Yogi, are indebted for their possibility. And now, let me close this chapter by saying that when modern science shall have seen its way to the acceptance of the Poseidonic knowledge herein outlined, physical nature will no longer possess any hidden recess, any penetralia, for the scientific investigator.”8
Curiously, one of the most documented and studied clairvoyants of the early twentieth century, Edgar Cayce, would similarly describe Atlantean civilization in the millenia before its untimely final destruction as in possession of similar advanced technology, and would catalog in over 700 separate readings for clients, an exhaustive, bizarre and at times, deeply disturbing saga of the three destructions of the Atlantean civilization over the span of nearly 100,000 years, culminating in an exodus to Giza around 10,500B.C., when he claims the Great Pyramid was constructed over a subsequent period of 100 years using magnetic levitation. A curious date to propose in 1932, since Robert Bauval would later discover in the 1980s that the three pyramids of Giza would have been aligned to the constellation Orion around 10,450B.C. Cayce’s accounts of simultaneus migrations to the Yucatan Peninsula and the Pyrenees mountains before the final destruction detailed by Plato also bolster much of the cultural, linguistic and archaeological anomolies discovered the Atlantic world over, linking these seemingly disparate regions to a lost mid-ocean Atlantean homeland that was utterly destroyed at the end of the Younger Dryas cataclysm.
Dr. Harmon Bro, who was an extreme skeptic before his wife convinced him to live with Edgar Cayce through an internship opportunity in the early 1940s, took detailed notes of the experience, which left him bewildered since Cayce, in waking life, was an uneducated seventh-grade dropout who only read the newspaper and the Bible. When in his deep hypnogogic trance state, however, he seemingly had access to all information, some of which proved eerily accurate with regard to the locations of objects, missing persons, untreatable illnesses and hundreds of other startling feats of non-local perception. As Dr. Bro later explained, “The data from history which he offered were so wide-ranging and careful that one might suspect he had memorized, book by book, not simply the Bible but an exhaustive encyclopedia, except that he showed no evidence awake of such knowledge…And when and how might he have learned so many languages of the past from which to draw crucial terms and proper names so casually.
Whatever his sources and methods, he had a remarkable facility for keeping straight what he saw as interlocking lives from the same periods in history. Whether reporting individuals from the French Crusades, the Ming Dynasty, Galileo’s Italy, or settlers in American colonies, he did not contradict himself or repeat among four or five or more incarnations apiece for some 2,000 persons. His memory for details or relationships and positions he assigned in other times seemed virtually flawless, as he linked individuals in readings given as many as twenty years apart.”9
Bro also noticed bizarre recurring themes in the numerous life readings that he witnessed, including frequent historical references to the “Atlantean experience” as if it were absolute fact, often coming off the heels of a more mundane past life reading. For Cayce, it was merely a skill he had inherited and later mastered as an adept at reading the Akashic Records. As he once told an inquirer from his deep sleep on his green couch:
“Activity of ANY nature, as of the voice, as of a light made, produced in the natural forces those of a motion – which pass on, or are upon, the record of that as time. As may be illustrated in the atomic vibration as set in motion for those in that called the audition, or the radio in its activity. IT passes even faster than time itself. Hence LIGHT forces pass much faster, but the records are upon the esoteric, or etheric, or akashic forces, as they go along upon the wheels of time, the wings of time, or in WHATEVER dimension we may signify as a matter of its momentum or movement. Hence as the forces that are attuned to those various incidents, periods, times, places, may be accorded to the record, the CONTACT as of the needle upon the record, as to how clear a rendition or audition is received, or how clear or how perfect an attunement of the instrument used as the reproducer of same is attuned to those KEEPERS – as may be termed – OF those records.”10
The fact remains that members of the American Medical Association, countless professors of science, licensed psychologists, dozens of inventors, prominent physicists, oil prospectors, stock market executives, members of Congress, oil barons, Amelia Earheart’s husband, Nicola Tesla, and “one high in authority in Washington,” (Woodrow Wilson, a childhood friend of Cayce’s told biographers) themselves sought out his uncanny abilities, whatever we may in retrospect say about him.
I chose to include these psychic visions of Atlantis, if you will, not to sensationalize but to add richness, texture and depth to an ancient account that is far too often relegated to a singular Platonic source or, on the other extreme, reduced to a silly Disney movie. In doing so, after piecing together thousands of transcripts from the Edgar Cayce archives in Virginia Beach, and collating countless other clairvoyant accounts beyond these and seeing how they align with concrete available data from geology, anthropology, oceanography, linguistics and historical evidence, I found my own inner skeptic slowly realizing that there was much more to this grand mystery than meets the eye.
1 Plato, Timaeus, translated from the Ancient Greek by Benjamin Jowett, MIT
Internet Classics Archive.
3 Rodney Castleden, Atlantis Destroyed (Routledge: 1998), Index.
4 Francisco López de Gómara, Historia general de las Indias, 1555. Translated
from the Spanish by Richard Eden.
5 Michel de Montaigne, “On the Cannibals,” 1588. Translated from the French by Ian Johnston. Project
6 Frederick Oliver, A Dweller of Two Planets (Poseid Publishing, 1920), “Amanuensis”.
7 Matt McGrath, “Crops were cultivated in regions of the Amazon 10,000 Years Ago,” BBC News, April 8,
8 Phylos the Thibetan, A Dweller of Two Planets (Poseid Publishing, 1920), p.66.
9 Dr. Harmon Harzel Bro, A Seer Out of Season (St. Martin’s, 1996), p.128.
10 Edgar Cayce, A.R.E. Archives, Reading 364-6.
“At times lyrical, at times pensive, Le Flem coaxes the many voices from history that have embraced this subject like an orchestra conductor.”
— Robert Neyland, Archaeological Discovery Journal
“Visions of Atlantis offers humanity a timely historic message for its consciousness to awaken to far greater cosmic quintessence.”— Professor E.E. Richards, University of Maine at Augusta
“A well-researched and fascinating page-turner.”
— Lisa Hagan, Publisher, Lisa Hagan Literary