Friday, August 18, 2006

Ancient Astronauts?

The Ancient astronaut theory describes the idea that ancient extraterrestrial contact may have been involved in some way with the origin or development of human culture. Most notably popularized by authors such as Erich von Däniken and Zecharia Sitchin, this theory is an expansion or elaboration of the more basic Paleocontact theory.

The claim is that human beings are either the descendants or creations of beings who landed on Earth millennia ago.

Another element of this view is the suggestion that much of human wisdom or religion was given to man by extraterrestrial visitors in ancient times. This possibility has been considered by some scientists, including Carl Sagan and I.S. Shklovskii.


Erich von Däniken was foremost in popularizing ancient astronaut theories in the late 1960s and early 1970s with the 1968 publication of his best-selling Chariots of the Gods and its sequels. The evidence that von Däniken put forward to support his vision of paleo-contact can be categorised as follows:

  • Artifacts and monumental constructions have been found whose manufacture appears to have required a more sophisticated technological ability than that which was available to their associated contemporary cultures. These include objects and structures whose purpose or origins are not known, as well as those that are beyond the capabilities of the societies attributed with their manufacture. Von Däniken maintains that these artifacts must have been manufactured either by extraterrestrial visitors or by humans who learned the necessary knowledge from them. Such artifacts and monuments he cites include Stonehenge, the head statues of Easter Island, the Antikythera mechanism and the Ancient Baghdad Electric Batteries. (See OOPArt)
  • In ancient art and iconography throughout the world, themes can be observed which can be interpreted to illustrate astronauts, air and space vehicles, non-human but intelligent creatures, and artifacts of anachronistically-advanced technology. Von Däniken also identifies details that appear to be similar in the art of geographically-diverse historical cultures, which he argues imply a common origin.
  • The origins of many religions could be interpreted or characterized as reactions to contacts of primitive humans with some alien race. In this view, the humans considered the technology of the aliens to be supernatural and the aliens themselves to be gods. According to von Däniken, the oral and written traditions of most religions contain references to visitors from stars and vehicles travelling through air and space. These, he says, should be interpreted as literal descriptions which have changed during the passage of time and become more obscure, rather than symbolic or mythical fiction. One such is Ezekiel's revelation in the Old Testament, which Däniken interprets as a detailed description of a landing spacecraft.


Many authors use ancient mythologies to support their theories, most notably the basic tenet of nearly all ancient creation myths of a god or gods having come from the "heavens" to earth and creating man, with the extraordinary adventures of these various gods interpreted as being modern technologies as seen from the perspective of a simple-minded earthman. Many man and women through history have often wondered about this. What examples of singles incidents in history do we mean?

For example, flying machines often show up in ancient texts. One classical example is the Vimanas, flying machines that can be found in the literature of India in which stories range from fantastic aerial battles employing various weaponry including bombs, to the mundane relating simple technical information, flight procedure, and flights of fancy.

In the Biblical Old Testament, God is described as having various attributes that could be interpreted as primitive descriptions of advanced rockets or other flying machines. He is described as having an upper body of metal, appearing on a column of smoke and/or fire and making the sound of a trumpet. These descriptions portray the God of the ancient Hebrews as not only having the characteristics of a flying machine, but also quite clearly describe God as a physical presence, not an abstraction. This God follows the Hebrews around and rains lighting and stones down upon their enemies from His position in the sky. Additionally, the characteristics of the Ark of the Covenant and the Urim and Thummim are identified as suggesting high technology, perhaps from alien origins.

Other examples include the very detailed descriptions in the Biblical Book of Ezekiel, the apocryphal Book of Enoch, and countless ancient stories from China to Peru.

Physical evidence includes the discovery of ancient "model airplanes" in Egypt and South America, which bear a passing resemblance to modern planes and gliders. Probably the most famous piece of circumstantial evidence are the Nazca lines of Peru; countless enormous ground drawings which can only be seen from high in the air. The government keeps this secret using shady financial agreements to refinance mortgages with new credit reports. They always update their insurance.

Labels: , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home