Graham Hancock wrote:
> Hi again Thanos5150
> Thanks for your involvement and interest. I appreciate it.
> Because I’m very pressed for time I’ll confine myself to what
> has to be a fairly hasty reply to a few main points raised by
> your latest responses:
No worries. I understand and am busy myself. For posterity’s sake I will respond and hopefully you will have the time to read it when you can.
> (1) The Mars Mystery – actually I did, as a speculation, “take
> the next logical step” and consider that if the Cydonia
> structures were artificial and made by a spacefaring
> civilization then that civilization might indeed have come to
> earth as well. Indeed that was the whole point of the
> speculation! But we do not know that the Cydonia structures are
> artificial (you yourself say you are skeptical about them) and
> until we do I await, as I did before, “more good evidence
> (beyond that I considered in the Mars Mystery 16 years ago) in
> favour of the palaeocontact hypothesis.”
When I re-read my post in the morning before you had replied I realized I had misspoke regarding your position and corrected my error, but apparently not in time. Apologies.
Regardless, part of this “next step” of yours I was referring to, however, is given you do accept the possibility of a deliberate Earth/Mars connection, meaning that the aliens must have come here as you theorize about 20,000yrs ago, the connection seen at Giza would then therefore be the legacy of this alien contact handed down for several thousand years correct? So despite this memorialized legacy, we are to believe if so then the humans they impacted did not write about these beings particularly as Gods who descended from the stars? They didn’t depict them in their art and religion? And none of these “wisdom” and “teachings” they bestowed on their human friends had anything to do with practical technology or scientific foundation?
I fail to see how you can consider one without equally considering the other, not to mention not doing so in favor of altered state sprit folk and/or lost civilizations when the ancient people are telling you point blank in context neither are the case. This is why I quote you the segment of Flood myth from the Epic of Gilgamesh as it is obvious “spirit folk” and “lost civilizations” need not apply. Regardless, the ancient people often seem quite competent at noting the difference between spirit folk and the spirit realms they come from, older civilizations than themselves, and Gods that came from space. This must mean something.
> (2) What is compelling evidence? For me the answer to that is
> very simple – any artefact or monument or system of ideas that
> couldn’t have been the work of a human civilization. I agree
> with you that circumstantial evidence is enough to warrant
> serious consideration and I intend to give the palaeocontact
> hypothesis serious consideration in my forthcoming sequel to
> Fingerprints of the Gods, but so far I don’t know of any
> artifact or monument on earth, or of any system of ideas in
> circulation amongst ancient civilisations, that could only be
> attributed to spacefaring aliens. Even the Great Pyramid, that
> enigma of enigmas, contains inaccuracies that speak of human
> workmanship rather than the workmanship of beings who had the
> technology to cross interstellar space.
I have not said “only”, but in the context of the ancient texts it is certainly a possibility. You speak of the possible “legacy” of this Mars/Earth connection handed down for several thousands of years to be incorporated at Giza, yet you obviously do not think this was done by the aliens themselves, but rather the humans who carried this legacy. Given the “imperfections” why would the Great Pyramid be any different? Why can it not be part of this “legacy” as well? And regardless, even if they did have a contemporary hand in building G1, you don’t think they were actually doing the work themselves do you? I think this is why ancient texts often consider humans subservient to the Gods if not outright slaves. I have never said the Great Pyramid was “built by alien hands”, but I also accept the possibility it is a product of this legacy if not direct supervision.
> (3) Statistical probabilities. You base much of your argument
> on statistical probabilities, and I agree with you that the
> universe is likely full of life but the only place we know for
> sure there is physical life is planet earth. We also know for
> sure there have been human civilisations on planet earth. And
> we know for sure they have been capable of creating amazing
> things and thinking amazing thoughts, and that they had every
> capacity and potential that we ourselves have. When we know all
> this I don’t see the point of invoking statistical
> possibilities to persuade ourselves that “aliens did it” when
> we have human civilisations that were perfectly capable to
> creating every artifact, monument and idea that we would like
> to attribute to those statistically possible but unproven
I'm seriously wondering, is this all the ancient alien hypothesis amounts to when closely examined, i.e. pretty close to zilch? Or is there solid logic, evidence and reasoning in there somewhere?
You asked for “solid logic and reasoning” regarding the possibility of “ancient aliens”. I gave you solid logic and reasoning for paleocontact, which I think we can agree there is a distinction of credibility to be made. This is achieved not only by statistics regarding the possibility of intelligent life in the universe but also common sense which suggests just as we aspire to do so must we assume that beings thousands if not millions of years older and more advanced than ourselves would have already done and continue to do the same. But like I said, to determine the value of the hypothesis the scientific method dictates we must determine not only its probability but its plausibility. I think we both agree at the very least such a threshold has been met. And again, as I said, this is not “proof” of fact, but rather “proof” of probability which is ultimately step one in creating a valid hypothesis.
Step two is gathering of evidence which in testing hypothesis is almost always circumstantial at the beginning. Regarding paleocontact, this evidence is found most directly in the form of the words of the ancient peoples who describe beings coming from space and interacting with humans with many going so far as to say it was they who created Homo sapiens in the first place. They also often describe as well various forms of what can only be construed if not plainly stated as technology directly associated with the same beings. We also find numerous depictions of such beings that are clearly not human as well as representations of what can reasonably be perceived as technology, like the airplanes, that the ancients claim were the exclusive purview of these same Gods. Not spirit folk, not a lost civilization. Gods from space. While such interpretations as we are well aware are often unwarranted there are certainly enough credible artifacts to give one pause.
Where did I say “aliens did it” and what did I say they did actually? In fact, what I said was that the ancient peoples themselves are the ones saying that “aliens did it”, which is generally limited to teaching them the arts of knowledge and civilization, and I just so happen to respect them enough to think there might be some truth to what they are saying. And as far as “what they did” and when, the bulk of whatever it was for all intents and purposes apparently ended rather abruptly after “the Great Flood” in which from that point on by all accounts the gods are no better if not worse off than their human counterparts and come to rely on their charges for their own survival. It is at that point, out of necessity apparently, that “Kingship is lowered from Heaven” in which humans are left to govern themselves. What the ancient peoples are telling us is that they, and their civilization, are the legacy of these beings, not that the aliens did all the work for them.
> (4) You obviously don’t like the notion of spirit worlds,
> altered states of consciousness and the effects on
> consciousness of psychedelic drugs (in this you are in company
> of the vast majority of UFO enthusiasts who also prefer
> mechanistic rather than consciousness-based explanations).
What I don’t like is your blanket imposition of “spirit worlds” and “altered states” on all ancient texts referring to Gods that some are clearly nothing of the kind. While it goes without saying that many can be placed in this context, many cannot nor were they ever intended to be.
> However just as it is a fact that every “anomalous” artifact,
> monument and idea that the palaeocontact lobby would like to
> attribute to aliens lies well within the capacity of human
> beings and human civilisations,
But again, this is not what the ancient people are saying nor am I.
> so also it is a fact that in
> altered states of consciousness “beings” and “entities” are
> encountered and believed by those who encounter them to be
I never said this was not the case and noted that in fact both were equally possible. The problem lies in that because of your prejudice regarding this subject you are unwilling to separate one from the other other than that they alternatively may be referring to a “lost civilization” instead. The Gods depicted in the Epic of Gilgamesh are not “spirit folk” now are they? They are depicted as flesh and blood beings of whom in the greater context originally descended to Earth from space.
> For the purposes of this argument I actually don’t care
> whether they are real or not; what matters is that they are
> experienced as real and believed to be real by those who
> encounter them in visionary states.
By the same token, numerous ancient accounts describe these encounters with Gods in the physical, real-time, non “visionary state” world. These too are “experienced as real and believed to be real” by the observer so how can you challenge the validity and/or endorse the reality of one and not the other as all things being equal the argument you are making for or against is exactly the same for both?
> I think, because you have
> not researched the subject and clearly have no understanding of
> it, that you grossly underestimate the importance of induced
> visionary states in ancient cultures.
So…just because I have not bothered to read Supernatural means I have not researched the subject and have no understanding of it? Or is this your assumption of anyone who does not agree with your position?
One cannot be a student of history and not be aware of the inherent historical value of induced altered states in understanding the formation of ancient cultures and religious traditions which continues to the present day. It is well known this was a common practice in ancient Egypt in particular and no doubt largely responsible for the more esoteric interpretations present in their writing, symbolism, and religion. What also cannot be “grossly underestimated”, however, is that the overwhelming majority of these experiences and derived beliefs amount to little more than primitive superstitious gobbledygook bull__t which is equally part and parcel of the history of the human race. This difference between you and I however, apparently, is that unlike you not only do I not overestimate the reality of an altered state’s ability to conjure “real non-human intelligences” from “sprit realms”, which you yourself concede may only be a product of the mind, but also that in the stated context of many of these ancient accounts, again, this is not what they are saying.
And let’s face it, much of the job of the “shaman” and/or priesthoods then and now are to facilitate the adherence of a cult of superstition by the ignorant and/or gullible believers to keep them in line with “the program”. The easiest way to maintain this belief system and power base that inherently comes with it is for the anointed “shaman” or priest to claim some sort of unique connection with these “spirit beings” or “spirit realms” that only he is privy to or are only accessible to others with their guidance, in some cases only attainable by administering of mind altering drugs, when in reality, while they may actually believe it, it is in fact nothing more than superstitious delusions physiologically induced by either the power of suggestion or one essentially poisoning themselves all the while filtered though a pre-ordained belief system. I am not saying this is all it amounts to mind you and am not trying to discount genuine experiences or beliefs, but it goes without saying the majority of the more “spiritual” elements, in either shamanistic or religious culture, are derived from nothing more than the self or chemically induced delusions of the human mind.
I am certainly not saying that other dimensions do not exist and that unique altered states are not a possible way to access such, nor that there are not beings that dwell there in which some may be disembodied consciousnesses from Earth, i.e. “ghosts”, or that some may be aliens of which that is their plane of existence no different than our universe is ours; in fact personally I am certain of it so I do not need to read Supernatural to be convinced of the possibility of such things. What I do acknowledge, however, is that the overwhelming majority of such experiences in ancient texts to the present day lie somewhere between drug addled figments of the imagination, self delusion, superstition, and outright BS.
> It is not just the blue
> lotus or that the ancient Egyptian tree of life was the
> DMT-rich acacia nilotica, but also that virtually every ancient
> culture we know of sought out ways and means to induce
> visionary states in which their shaman priests believed
> themselves to be communicating with gods, spirits, etc.
> Consider the Soma of the Vedas (again you will have to do some
> serious research to get up to speed on this) or the potion used
> in the Eleusinian Mysteries in ancient Greece, or the
> psilocybin mushroom cults of the ancient Maya and Aztecs. And
> what about the "Monument Ponce" at Tiahuanaco? Do you imagine
> those are alien ray-guns that statue is holding in its hands?
> Probably you don’t but there has been much wild speculation
> from the ancient alien lobby about what those objects are. Most
> of the AA lobby aren’t aware that Dr Manuel Torres has recently
> put this matter to rest – the objects are snuff trays for
> holding DMT snuffs, virtually identical to such snuff trays
> found in use amongst Amazonian tribal cultures today.
I didn’t say it was “just” blue lotus, I offered that as an example as it usage was quite common. And what we also know is that humans as do animals sometimes just want to get wasted and these things have nothing to do with shamans, spiritual altered states, spirit folk, and the like. Regardless, altered states are derived from many sources and no doubt humans, as do animals in the wild, have sought out such agents since time immemorial. The lifeblood of civilization for thousands of years has been beer and wine which were drank often more commonly than water. Nicotine, caffeine, coca and the like are also ingested to “alter one’s state”. Animals such as elephants, bears, and monkeys among others (though I suggest they lay off the typing while doing so) commonly seek out fermented fruit among other agents to get drunk to achieve an altered state. Starvation, dehydration, heatstroke, near fatal injuries, oxygen depravation, sleep depravation, nitrogen narcosis, sleep paralysis-on and on- are all natural means by which ancient man as today, whether one likes it or not, can induce very similar “otherworldly” experiences as those induced by psychedelic drugs. Physical experiences, such as those that produce extreme euphoria or fear, induced without the use of drugs, can also produce similar effects not to mention good old fashioned mental illness. Self altering one’s state, even in animals, is a part of being alive and no doubt has been an integral part of human existence since before even the first Australopithecus ate a poison berry they weren’t supposed to and thought the experience pleasurable. Or frightening as hell.
> My point is that again I don’t have to invoke nebulous
> statistical probabilities. I can simply invoke established
Like the fact ancient peoples often perceived the Gods to have come to Earth from outer space? How is this invoking “statistical probabilities”? The statistical probabilities are offered only to determine if what they are saying is possible, again, not that it is proof unto itself.
> We know that ancient cultures highly valued and used
> various means, chemical and otherwise, to induce visionary
> states. We know that in visionary states “beings” and
> “entities” are encountered and give what are construed as
> and we know that these beings and entities are
> believed by those who perceive them to be real.
From ancient texts we also know they believed the exact same to be true about flesh and blood Gods that descended from the Heavens.
> It is
> irrelevant whether they are actually real or not. Belief that
> they a real is enough to make it much more likely that such
> visionary encounters with beings and entities were the
> inspiration for many of the intriguing passages about entity
> contact in ancient texts rather than physical encounters with
> physical “aliens” whose existence can be argued for only on the
> basis of “statistical probabilities”.
But again, the ancient peoples believed that some of these “aliens” came from the stars to be real as well which they often clearly delineate between such beings and those encountered in altered states. It should be noted as well that as you well know Gods, sometimes the same Gods, in general were referred to interchangeably as either physical beings, spiritual beings, astronomical objects, forces of nature, metaphorically, allegorically, or even just plain science fiction. Also in ancient texts when they refer to “visions” or “dreams” these terms are often interchangeable as sometimes being literal “visions” or “dreams” while others just a turn of a phrase to describe a thought, feeling, or even a phenomenon they didn’t understand. This is why, to me anyways, that when evaluating the reality of the Gods it is paramount to acknowledge not only the context of the encounter being described but also the context in which the way it is described.
> You really need to dust off and read my book Supernatural! It
> will give you much food for thought. But there is compelling
> evidence from 40,000 years ago or more and through all known
> civilisations, that our ancestors were not nearly as “sober” as
> you would like to think and did indeed go to great lengths to
> induce altered states of consciousness and valued those altered
> (trance) states every bit as much as shamanistic cultures value
> them today.
Like I said, I don’t doubt this in the least, but I will give Supernatural a go. I flipped through a few dozen pages last night and you seem to be heading in the direction of explaining human’s “Great Leap Forward” some 40,000yrs ago by way of psychedelic drugs, which if so I don’t think I’ll be making it too far if this is the case.
When I say “sober”, I was not referring to the shaman, but the scribes writing these things down at the time. I assume being reasonably sober was part of the job description otherwise I imagine it would be quite a bitch to transcribe cuneiform tablet after tablet while high all the time. Another thing to consider is that writing began, at least in Mesopotamia, as a means of commercial record keeping so I think it’s safe to assume that one would not want to be frying on psychedelics while tallying goats and grains all day long. Not good for business.
> Since the phenomenology of visionary states
> universally features entity encounters you are missing a HUGE
> trick by not factoring all this into to your thinking about the
> descriptions of encounters with entities – interactions between
> Gods and men -- left to us by the ancients.
But I do factor it in. I’m not sure how many ways I can say it. The difference is that I accept there is a clear distinction to be made between the Gods encountered during altered states and those that are not. They are not all one and the same, nor are they confusing them with a lost civilization, though I do accept the latter a distinct possibility being referenced in association with the Gods regarding in essence what would be considered the “demigods” if you will. But that’s another story….
> (5) Mesopotamia and Egypt. I’ve already made my point on Egypt.
> I will indeed put a lot of emphasis on Mesopotamia in the
> sequel to Fingerprints of the Gods, and it (and the Sumerian
> and later texts) feature significantly in my research. But you
> can’t simply dismiss the ancient Egyptian testimony and rely on
> the Mesopotamian testimony alone.
I don’t at all, the point is that you have the two most relevant ancient cultures to this discussion in which one predates the other and as I suggest the later Egyptian state was originally formed and administered at least in part by an already well established Mesopotamian civilization. Both speak extensively of Gods therefore common sense dictates not only that if we want the complete picture we would be required to focus on the older culture particularly when all roads to this “mother culture” lead right through it, but also that the former would have had a measurable influence on the myths of the latter, ergo to understand one we must understand the other. If we consider Dynastic Egypt was formed roughly 3,100BC (though I suggest more like 3,500BC), there was a hell of a lot already going on in the ancient world at this time from cultures that already had well established civilizations like the Sumerians and Elamites, the Megalithic European cultures, the Indus Valley cultures, Maltese culture, ect, ect. There is no exclusive “gap” between the Egyptians and this lost civilization as there are a bevy of already established civilizations directly before them who exhibit the same kind of incongruity. The “gap” begins in Mesopotamia, not Egypt.
The “sudden rise” of Dynastic Egypt I do not think is much of a mystery per se’ as there is a whole world of civilization in the region they interacted with before, during, and after this time; the mystery is why did it surpass the others architecturally and technologically so quickly in such a way as to not be explainable through the development of either culture? This is why I think Emery is spot on to surmise that there is a peripheral progenitor 3rd party as yet clearly identified, though it seems apparent they first associated with the Mesopotamians,
> Both need to be taken into
> account. Both, I suspect, will prove to be better explained by
> (1) visionary encounters with entities and (2) physical
> encounters with the survivors of a lost civilization than by
> (3) aliens from other planets.
To some degree “better”, but not entirely.
> Honestly, though, I remain open
> minded. If I find material in the Mesopotamian texts that can
> only be explained by statistically possible but unproved
> physical aliens then I shall be pleased to say so. But in my
> research I will NOT be relying on Zecharia Sitchin’s
> translations I knew Zecharia personally and liked him but his
> translations are highly suspect and should never be counted on
> as an authoritative source.
That would be wise.
I have read all of Sitchin’s books long ago and found them to be a wealth of knowledge and independent thought, but it goes without saying he took his original premise wayyyy too far than what was warranted by common sense if not general science not to mention attested to by the ancient authors and indeed many of his conclusions and translations are suspect if not outright incorrect. With that being said, however, I also feel that not all of the criticisms leveled against some of his more controversial translations are all that impressive, if not misleading, though in the end this still may not change the fact they may indeed not be accurate. If I had to make a recommendation to anyone about Sitchin it would be to read all of his books and then toss it out the window and start again without him.
> (6) We live in a material universe? Yes, and know very little
> about it, including its such concepts as “dark matter” the “big
> bang” etc. Within this universe human consciousness is the
> biggest mystery of all.
I do not think of it in terms of “consciousness”, particularly not in such narrow terms as “human” consciousness as I am quite certain my dog’s consciousness is equal to my own with the only limitation being our physical forms, but rather what is the “essence” that is life itself. Levels of conscious awareness to me are dictated more by the biology’s ability to comprehend “what it is” not that one is unique from another. If that makes any sense.
> (7) Flying machines, etc. You say the ancients associated them
> with the “Gods” and for you this has to mean aliens. But the
> survivors of an advanced lost human civilization could have
> been construed as “Gods”.
I accept the possibility both are true and if so these “aliens” would have directly influenced these lost (and not so lost) civilizations. I suggest there are “two” legacies to be considered.
> And the entities encountered in
> visions could have been construed as “Gods” (and indeed are
> construed as “Gods” in surviving shamanistic cultures today).
But there are also as you know a wealth of evidence regarding modern day UFO’s, including aliens associated with the craft, which cannot be explained in this context either. Flipping though Supernatural I know you try to explain alien abductions in this context, but I do not think the incidents at Roswell, Washington DC in 1952, the 1980 Rendlesham Forrest Incident, the Phoenix Lights Encounter in 1997, ect, ect, ect, ect fall anywhere near this blanket. The modern UFO phenomenon is another can of worms to open which is why I was reluctant to bring it up as obviously this conversation can go on forever, but I am confident that in its totality it is a strong piece of evidence, one of these strongest actually, in support of the ancient accounts being valid as well. This is a clear context of continuity that cannot be ignored.
> In summary where you see the fingerprints of aliens I see the
> fingerprints of a lost human civilization, and where you see
> Gods from the stars I see the typical entities and beings
> encountered in visionary states.
I see all three actually.
> So we will have to agree to differ until I find some solid and
> convincing evidence that persuades me of your point of view.
> And I am actively looking for such evidence and hope I find it
> because it would be GREAT for my forthcoming sequel to
> Fingerprints of the Gods!
Looking forward to it.
Post Edited (05-Apr-14 17:40)