Capitol Hill Blue
Originally, I had planned to start a thread just on Atlantis, specifically focusing on the island of Santorini and the Minoan Eruption of (Thera), circa 1645 B.C., but then I saw a story on the Garden of Eden, and read an account of Bob Ballard's search for the source of Great Flood myths. I am personally of the opinion that they are one and the same. That is, I have come to the conclusion that the likely source of Noah's story from the Bible and the lost civilization of Atlantis is the same event - the eruption of Thera.

Here's my theory: Atlantis (or a civilization that was given this name by Plato) did exist, although not when and where it was described. The plagues of the Old Testament may have actually occurred (in some form), including the "Great Flood" - since a Tsunami from the Minoan eruption would have reached and flooded Israel, as well as Egypt and other civilizations along the Mediterranean Sea, as would the ash clouds and other geophysical effects of the eruption which is the most enormous in recorded history. How The Eruption of Thera Changed the World.

So, what do y'all think of trying to find the historical bases of mythical events, such as the sinking of Atlantis, Noah's Ark, or King Arthur?
Even China has a great flood story:

Chin's Great Flood Myth
I have no doubt that many of the phenomena described in religious texts occurred in some natural way. If you take out the mystical aspect, a lot of things could have happened and been given an aura of the fantastic.
For instance, some people think of Reagan like Jesus. We are already seeing what their "historical" record of the Reign of Reagan looks like...
The Chinese Flood and the Biblical accounts of the Great Flood could easily have been caused by the same catastrophic event, The eruption of There, about 3500 years ago.

Somewhat farther back in history, about 10.000 years, there was also widespread flooding "of Biblical Proportions" when the last ice age ended. The tale of Atlantis could also be something passed down verbally from this era.

Ancient Flood Myths May have a Basis is Geological History
Originally Posted By: Greger
...
The tale of Atlantis could also be something passed down verbally from this era.

Ancient Flood Myths May have a Basis is Geological History



Actually, you hit on a good point. A lot of these "stories" were passed down verbally through the generations. We all remember playing "telephone" as kids, right?
No telling how the account of the original occurrence will end up.
Git yer answers here! Tired a the corruption of science in unnerstanding how the Great Flood came to pass? We got yer answers here!!

Christian answers
Just by way of general reference (i.e., without citations), it is generally believed that written languages were developed around 4000BCE, but that actual written histories are a relatively modern invention, circa 400BCE. In between there were some "chronologies" and "stories" recorded, and therein lies the rub, because those writers often didn't distinguish between "source materials." The Bible is a good example, as the stories go back centuries before they were recorded, and many were written as "lessons" (Proverbs), rather than literal chronologies. Often in histories of the earliest eras individuals are credited with accomplishments of entire clans or even societies that occurred over centuries. Credit was often more important than accuracy (that hasn't changed much). That is why I personally take all religious writing skeptically, but it is usually the source for some really good investigation. That is how Troy, Herculaneum and Akritori were discovered. It is when you can combine written record with archaeological find that it gets fun (think Richard III).
I recently engaged in a weeks-long adventure tracing the route of the Columbia River from its terminus to its source. Along the way, I was directly faced with evidence of the massive floods when the last ice age ended. (Biblical-Type Floods Are Real, and They're Absolutely Enormous)
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Long before the discovery of the scablands, geologists dismissed the role of catastrophic floods in interpreting European geology. By the end of the 19th century such ideas not only were out of fashion but were geological heresy. When J Harlen Bretz uncovered evidence of giant floods in eastern Washington in the 1920s, it took most of the 20th century for other geologists to believe him. Geologists had so thoroughly vilified the concept of great floods that they could not believe it when somebody actually found evidence of one.


I would discount the connection between these events and the stories from the Bible, and other famous and not-so-famous sources - Except, that these stories exist. I would not have believed that such stories could have existed for 10,000 years... but that it seems that they have. How much species memory do we retain? Is there a vestigial "instinct" even in humanity that gives these stories life and believably (even when freighted with fantastical mythologies)?

I just found this one: The Most Destructive Wave in Earth’s (Known) History
The Missoula Floods are an interesting series of floods that helped shape much of Oregon and Washington. After the natural ice dams in what is now Montana broke and sent forth the rushing waters-- they helped to scour out the Columbia River channel. The rushing waters then crashed up the Willamette River depositing an amazing about of top soil into the Willamette Valley.

That’s why the top soil in the Willamette Valley is 15 feet deep in most places.

Fun stuff. And we just returned from traveling along the Columbia River and into the Wallowa’s (Wah-Lao-Uz) in NE Oregon. Twas chief Joseph and the Nez Perce’s country until he-and they- were similarly dismissed and run off by the US gummint. A sad chapter for the US-- but the Nez Perce’s former country is astonishingly beautiful:

Missouastonishinglyla Floods



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Not all stories have historical bases, though. There are a number of native stories about Devil's Tower, for example, mostly involving a giant bear trying to reach children who were hiding atop the formation.

You can see why, but I'm not spending any time trying to find evidence of giant bears in the histories. That, of course, is the problem with relying on legends and myths. They don't always have historical precedents.
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spending any time trying to find evidence of giant bears in the histories.


If you get the urge and change your mind just check out Lewis and Clark’s journals.

When them white boys first encountered their first Grizzly in the mountains of Montana they just about chit 2 bricks.
When we were in Yellowstone, a couple of months back, we had the opportunity to see a grizzly charge - toward us, not at us. It was one of the most awesome sights I have personally witnessed. They are both huge and fast. Fortunately, for all involved, it was a bluff charge.
Maybe the flood and bear legends are akin to the modern day fish stories. They got bigger and bigger with each telling... wink
Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
When we were in Yellowstone, a couple of months back, we had the opportunity to see a grizzly charge - toward us, not at us. It was one of the most awesome sights I have personally witnessed. They are both huge and fast. Fortunately, for all involved, it was a bluff charge.


Bears are one of my favorite animals. Have seen quite a few in NJ - I have been working there. They are usually not aggressive unless they feel threatened. Bears and big cats - my best friends smile
Originally Posted By: Scoutgal
Maybe the flood and bear legends are akin to the modern day fish stories. They got bigger and bigger with each telling... wink
It is not only fish that get bigger with telling... "really, it's 11""
Humans seek to provide explanations for things they cannot understand. It is a natural process. The less information, the more fantastical the explanations. There was a lot less information available to ancient mankind.
Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
Originally Posted By: Scoutgal
Maybe the flood and bear legends are akin to the modern day fish stories. They got bigger and bigger with each telling... wink
It is not only fish that get bigger with telling... "really, it's 11""


My point exactly! LOL
Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
Humans seek to provide explanations for things they cannot understand. It is a natural process. The less information, the more fantastical the explanations. There was a lot less information available to ancient mankind.


Also true. But I feel that some are true just as they are. I suppose you could say that it is a matter of faith. smile
There is ample evidence that post ice age flooding occurred.
Originally Posted By: Greger
There is ample evidence that post ice age flooding occurred.
That is absolutely true. What is open to interpretation is whether those floods are the source of the stories. They well could be, although those stories would have to have been transmitted over hundreds of generations.
Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
Originally Posted By: Greger
There is ample evidence that post ice age flooding occurred.
That is absolutely true. What is open to interpretation is whether those floods are the source of the stories. They well could be, although those stories would have to have been transmitted over hundreds of generations.


And did all the flood stories occur at the same time?
"Same time" is a fluid concept. "Long ago" is how most of them go, but there were several different mega-floods at the end of the last Ice Age. For most such neolithic groups it would have seemed as if it were the "whole world" since their "world" would have been so small. We are also just learning about some mega-tsunamis that occurred then or shortly after.
Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
... "Long ago" is how most of them go...


Yeah well. The other day I was watching FOX or the 700 Club. Seriously. I watch them both on occasion. FOX to raise my blood pressure and the 700 Club to get a few chuckles. I love the facial expressions on Pat Robertson and that one half opened eye while he pontificates the truth.

Then-- yet another guy comes out in an interview claiming this time to have discovered the remains of Noah’s Ark. The wood remains of the Ark he claims to have found was near the summit of Mt. Ararat in eastern Turkey under stone rubble. So there you go........

Noah’s Ark has finally truly been discovered this time and the absolute unerring word of the Bible proves to be true. What more evidence does anyone need? Hmm
700 Club... Is that on Comedy Central?
Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
700 Club... Is that on Comedy Central?


It should be. LOL
I kind of think some of the cataclysmic events reported in the old testament really happened.

When I was in college I had to read Worlds in Collision by Velikovsky. He used the bible and other ancient texts and artifacts from around the world to prove his theories, one of which was that Venus passed very close to the earth before it established its orbit.

One effect, he says, of Venus's close pass was the sea pulling back (to allow the children of Israel to escape the pharaoh), much as the moon effects the tides. Then he points to a salt lake high in the mountains in China (I think, it was a long time ago), and connects the two events.

He cites the biblical story of how the sun stood still so Joshua could win a battle. And he cites texts or mythology or whatever from the other side of the globe that tells of a night that was way too long.

I guess I think the old testament contains some historical truths. And a pretty scary, incomprehensible god.
Quote:
The plausibility of the theory was summarily rejected by the physics community, as the cosmic chain of events proposed by Velikovsky contradicts basic laws of physics.
Wikipedia

The Old Testament may contain some historical truths but Velikovsky's theory is not one of them.....
If Venus ever passed close to Earth, there was no life here yet. Something else would have had to circularize Venus's orbit (and then presumably left the solar system?). Otherwise Venus would still be having close encounters with Earth, because orbits simply don't change unless something changes them.

You guys are compressing geological time into human history.
The great Missoula floods were 13-15000 years ago and people probably first show up here after they were over. I doubt any humans witnessed them, or survived if they did.
I dunno, PIA, we had Paleoindians here in Florida back 12,000 years ago. Artifacts are often found quite a ways out in the Gulf by divers. Since a lot of the oceans were tied up in ice at that time the coasts extended considerably farther out than today. As far as stories being passed down through countless generations since then I have some serious doubts though.
Florida's Paleoindians
The floods lasted about 2000 years and they happened about every 50 years or so. (The ice dams would reform and then break.) These floods were huge. The land would have been a barren wasteland for hundreds of miles near the coast, and solid ice inland.

This is why I think very few humans got past that until the floods stopped and the land reformed into forest. Anybody who ventured out into the new land to settle, would eventually get washed out to sea in the next mega-flood.
9 floods of biblical proportion

This is why I don't think it is necessary (or likely) that the ice age floods are the source of great flood mythology. I note, however, that Ice age floods lasted until about 8000 BC. It is demonstrable that civilization (human habitation) coincided with some of these inundations. They likely made a huge impression on the survivors. Some raised sea levels by 9 feet.
Quote:
In response to:
Poster: Greger
Subject: Re: Atlantis, the Great Flood, and Historical Bases of Mythology

Quote:
Quote:
The plausibility of the theory was summarily rejected by the physics community, as the cosmic chain of events proposed by Velikovsky contradicts basic laws of physics.
Wikipedia


The Old Testament may contain some historical truths but Velikovsky's theory is not one of them.....


Velikovsky took a pummeling after he published Worlds in Collision. For using the bible and other ancient texts and for his reliance on the chaos theory. So he wrote another book Planets in Chaos, in which he used more scientific evidence to back his theories. He took a little less of a beating for that one.

And then, just last year, there came some vindication with this article, which proclaims, "Velikivsky Was Right." But just about the chaos thing, not the biblical and ancient text thing.
As long as we aren't trying to say that the planets were bouncing off each other in the past 10,000 years I'm okay with most any theory.
What Akrotiri demonstrated to me is that civilization was far more advanced than we realized, earlier than we expected. The Bronze Age may have only started some 5-6000 years ago, but the level of art and architecture demonstrated in that village 4000 years ago show that, though we may have been unsophisticated with regard to our place in the universe, we were a very clever species. We were problem solvers like no other species on earth, and the complexity of the problems that we have been solving since are astounding.

So, taking that brain power and our ability to capture complex thoughts, it is not improbable that civilization was more advanced then than we realize now. We only have evidence of writing some 5000 years or so ago (Cuneiform), but all that really demonstrates is that we hadn't learned to preserve writing before then (or, at least that we haven't discovered it yet).

Given the level of sophistication it took to learn smelting (Bronze Age), we had to have developed more sophisticated means of passing knowledge along. That may have been in the form of writing, or of dedicated storytellers who were given the task of passing that knowledge on verbally - or by means we don't even know about now. We are only now coming to terms with the vastness and sophistication of the society that created Stonehenge some 4-5000 years ago. There is more that we don't know about that period than that we now know.

It is not impossible that stories from 8000-10,000 years ago were preserved within their civilizations. It also not improbable that there were more sophisticated and developed societies that had developed that we know nothing about. (After all, there was a tendency in that age for winning "tribes/clans/city-states" to completely destroy conquered enemies, pulling down entire cities and killing all of their inhabitants.) Plato claimed to have had ancient sources for his Atlantis story - which may or may not have been true - but that could be an indication that records did exist, but lost the race against entropy.

I find the prospects exhilarating.
More and more evidence is leaning in that direction NW.
I haven't had time to read this entire thread. Has anyone brought up the research being conducted in Spain at the confluence if the Mediterranean and Atlantic regarding Atlantis?
Stone age humans were masters of their technology. It didn't include any metals, so we have few artifacts of that technology. But that doesn't mean it did not exist. We know they were master hunters, potters, woodworkers, stoneworkers, tanners, etc. Just look at the outfit the iceman had and you can see some of this.

They ate wooly mammoths and mastodons, after all. Think about attacking and killing animals bigger than elephants with wood and stone spears. Respect!
The Neolithic Revolution
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When people think of the Neolithic era, they often think of Stonehenge, the iconic image of this early era. Dating to approximately 3000 B.C.E. and set on Salisbury Plain in England, it is a structure larger and more complex than anything built before it in Europe. Stonehenge is an example of the cultural advances brought about by the Neolithic revolution—the most important development in human history. The way we live today, settled in homes, close to other people in towns and cities, protected by laws, eating food grown on farms, and with leisure time to learn, explore and invent is all a result of the Neolithic revolution, which occurred approximately 11,500-5,000 years ago. The revolution which led to our way of life was the development of the technology needed to plant and harvest crops and to domesticate animals.

Before the Neolithic revolution, it's likely you would have lived with your extended family as a nomad, never staying anywhere for more than a few months, always living in temporary shelters, always searching for food and never owning anything you couldn’t easily pack in a pocket or a sack. The change to the Neolithic way of life was huge and led to many of the pleasures (lots of food, friends and a comfortable home) that we still enjoy today.
8000 year old earthworks in Kazakhstan
I am really learning a lot by some of the information posted here! ThumbsUp
History, especially ancient history, is pretty fascinating. Far more has been forgotten than has ever been preserved.
ossibly relevant to this discussion:
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The Hadean period began 4.5 billion years ago, when Earth was just 40 million or so years old. Scientists have long presumed it was a time of hell-like conditions, characterized by scorching temperatures and molten rock.

But the zircons reveal a different story. Chemical signatures embedded in the crystals suggest the planet had water, continents and even interconnected oceans.

This month, researchers studying these zircons made an even more unexpected discovery: the first evidence that life may have existed 4.1 billion years ago. That's 300 million years earlier than was previously thought.
Los Angeles Times
I'm not sure that there were any sentient beings during the Hadean period, but you never know... grin What it does demonstrate (or at least imply), though, is that there was more development on Earth earlier than imagined. What has yet to be discovered, however, are human footprints in Pleistocene soils... or either the Ark of Noah, or the Covenant.
Interesting stuff. I think this is really about stuff that happened, a LONG time ago. I offer http://campground-search.com/CampgroundDetails.aspx?cgid=120 as something of possible interest. The remains of what was, once, the greatest waterfall in the entire world - 400ft high and over 3 miles long. If you google "dry falls" you can get a LOT more pictures. This is in Eastern Washington state. My wife and I have gone there several times - pretty amazing.
That would have looked pretty amazing in its heyday.
It's pretty amazing now!
I feel that way about my memory
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