Cautionary Note

Plasma formations in the ancient sky. The role of planets as charged bodies in these formations. Ground-rules for drawing reliable conclusions. A new approach to the mythic archetypes: is a unified theory of world mythology possible?
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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by seasmith » Wed Apr 16, 2008 5:28 pm


Moses wrote:


Thus it was only after Saturn went away that another Divine Wisdom could arise.
Hi Mo,

Would you have a favorite myth.is.story recounting this sequence of events?

Cheers,
s
~

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MGmirkin
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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by MGmirkin » Wed Apr 16, 2008 6:52 pm

Grey Cloud wrote:Assuming the assumption about the point of origin in the above paragraph is correct:

If you guys are correct then, yes, one should see abundant references to catastrophic events, etc in these stories and a minimal number of stories relating to, e.g., a common spirituality or philosophy.
If this is the case, taking the Greco-Roman period for example, we should find references to catastrophic events by classical authors when they discuss myths. And one should bear in mind here that these authors had access to an untold number of texts that are now lost to us.

If I am correct then, one should see abundant references to a common spirituality or philosophy, etc in these stories and a minimal number of stories relating to catastrophic events.
And the comments about classical authors will apply to me in the same manner.

Would that be a more or less fair assessment of the situation?
I may have missed part of the conversation above, if I've taken anything out of context in my response, then apologies.

Are you saying something to the effect that "if classical greek / roman authors don't talk about catastrophic events, they didn't happen, and the stories are only that; IE the modern 'fairy-tale-esque' stories but sans catastrophic implications?" 'Cause I think that part of Talbott, et al's idea is also that the origins of the "mythology" of today and/or "classical" texts may have been if not "forgotten" then reinterpreted under much more peaceful skies that no longer resembled the chaotic skies the truly ancient peoples witnessed. Such that the original ancient myths were no longer seen as relevant or "applicable" since the time and events they described were no longer present in the skies. Thus, the myths were tidied up, cleaned up, sterilized of some of their original implications and given a more "earthly," "human-centric" caste, rather than the original "celestial" import. IE, the myths of the "gods" were brought closer to home. Some of the things which later generation found "fanciful" or "irrelevant" or "contradictory" may have been dropped, combined, or refashioned in new ways that gave them a lower level of cognitive dissonance, but perhaps lost some level of the original details. If that make sense. Perhaps D.Talbott could respond to that, a bit?

IE, just because those who may well have been "later" didn't speak in "catastrophic" terms (having not witnessed them first-hand), does not mean that the original stories weren't preserved mostly or partly intact (albeit potentially degraded by something akin to "Classical Bowdlerism"). Hence why it may be best to go back to the most archaic texts & symbolism, and to utilize the "archetypes" Talbott proposes in order to find the points of agreement between widely dispersed cultures' mythology. IE, many cultures across the globe have the archetype of the "Hero & the Serpent;" In many cultures, the hero is identified as "Mars," the morning star or the goddess with Venus, the primeval star with Saturn. Some are more emphatic about specific associations than others. These may be perspective issues, or may be cultural issues. Many cultures likewise have the "axis mundi," "world tree," "rainbow bridge," "pillar of heaven" motif that bridges the gap or (in some way) "physically" connects Earth to Heaven.

I think this "gradual corruption" or "localization" of the mythic traditions is the reason why Talbott, et al insist on being careful about using universal archetypes rather than localized traditions. IE, local traditions may add a lot of embellishments, remove particular bits and pieces of the story over time, etc. Though the core story, relationships, archetypes themselves may remain all or mostly intact / identifiable.

For instance, say, in one story the warrior's weapon of choice is a hammer, in another, it's a bow and arrow, in a third it's a sword that's used to kill the chaotic serpent. Does that necessarily mean that the interaction looked like a hammer or a bow or a sword? Not necessarily. If all of them also identified the weapon with "lightning" or the "thunderbolt," that might be the point of agreement (in addition to the other two or three; the warrior & the serpent doing battle roundabout the time of "doomsday," as with Thor & Jormungand at Ragnarok)

Anyway, if anyone else has other input or corrections, feel free...

Cheers,
~Michael Gmirkin
"The purpose of science is to investigate the unexplained, not to explain the uninvestigated." ~Dr. Stephen Rorke
"For every PhD there is an equal and opposite PhD." ~Gibson's law

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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by David Talbott » Wed Apr 16, 2008 8:17 pm

"Spirituality" in myth.

The heart of the matter raised here is that myth did not arise from spirituality or secret wisdom. The question can be answered unequivocally by going to the earliest sources. The Egyptian Pyramid Texts, written at least two thousand years before Greek philosophy, are not veiled spiritual lessons. They are an urgent, magical repetition of critical junctures in the age of the "gods"--as human beings perceived them.

It should not surprise us that later spiritual traditions drew endless analogies from the myths. That's what people knew. Certainly the early cultures are not demeaned by our realization that collective, creative activity of the cultures was provoked by celestial drama. There was an explosion of monumental architecture, music and dance, art, astronomy, political organization, military capabilities, and (many centuries later) philosophy and metaphysics, all drawing upon The Great Analogy provided by the mythic age of the gods. Our admiration for the skills of the artists, technicians, naturalists, philosophers, and spiritual teachers is certainly not diminished by the realization that they were provoked, directly and indirectly, by the most awe-inspiring and terrifying events in human history. The mistakes and the misguided practices, the values and insights gained can all be evaluated in their own right. Our reconstruction takes nothing away from the best of humanity, as it sought deeper understanding across the millennia, continually reinterpreting the great dramas of an earlier time.

David Talbott

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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by Grey Cloud » Thu Apr 17, 2008 3:43 pm

moses wrote:
GreyCloud wrote: Among those that would have been killed in the catastrophe and the, no doubt, subsequent anarchy would have been the keepers of the Wisdom or knowledge
You are here suggesting that the Wisdom of the past is pretty similar to
the Wisdom as you understand it. But if there was a Saturn System then
this would not be so. This is because the antics of Saturn would have been
extremely influencial on humanity, so much so that Saturn would be god,
the only god. And to say otherwise would be unthinkable. Thus it was only
after Saturn went away that another Divine Wisdom could arise.
Mo
(fmv 4-16-08: fixed ambiguous quote attribution)
If by "Wisdom of the past" you mean the pre-catastrophe wisdom, then yes. This wisdom addresses man's place in the Universe and that hadn't/isn't changed.
It is not necessarily so that Saturn would be the only god, nor is it necessarily so that Saturn was viewed as the creator of the Universe. Zeus for example, was not viewed as the creator of the Universe.
My position is that after Saturn went away and people began to pick up the pieces, that was what they had - pieces.
Look at languages. There are what? hundreds of languages now but they can all be traced back to a handful of root languages, Indo-European, Altaic etc.
If I have the least bit of knowledge
I will follow the great Way alone
and fear nothing but being sidetracked.
The great Way is simple
but people delight in complexity.
Tao Te Ching, 53.

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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by Grey Cloud » Thu Apr 17, 2008 4:36 pm

MGmirkin wrote:
Grey Cloud wrote:Assuming the assumption about the point of origin in the above paragraph is correct:

If you guys are correct then, yes, one should see abundant references to catastrophic events, etc in these stories and a minimal number of stories relating to, e.g., a common spirituality or philosophy.
If this is the case, taking the Greco-Roman period for example, we should find references to catastrophic events by classical authors when they discuss myths. And one should bear in mind here that these authors had access to an untold number of texts that are now lost to us.

If I am correct then, one should see abundant references to a common spirituality or philosophy, etc in these stories and a minimal number of stories relating to catastrophic events.
And the comments about classical authors will apply to me in the same manner.

Would that be a more or less fair assessment of the situation?
I may have missed part of the conversation above, if I've taken anything out of context in my response, then apologies.

Are you saying something to the effect that "if classical greek / roman authors don't talk about catastrophic events, they didn't happen, and the stories are only that; IE the modern 'fairy-tale-esque' stories but sans catastrophic implications?" 'Cause I think that part of Talbott, et al's idea is also that the origins of the "mythology" of today and/or "classical" texts may have been if not "forgotten" then reinterpreted under much more peaceful skies that no longer resembled the chaotic skies the truly ancient peoples witnessed. Such that the original ancient myths were no longer seen as relevant or "applicable" since the time and events they described were no longer present in the skies. Thus, the myths were tidied up, cleaned up, sterilized of some of their original implications and given a more "earthly," "human-centric" caste, rather than the original "celestial" import. IE, the myths of the "gods" were brought closer to home. Some of the things which later generation found "fanciful" or "irrelevant" or "contradictory" may have been dropped, combined, or refashioned in new ways that gave them a lower level of cognitive dissonance, but perhaps lost some level of the original details. If that make sense. Perhaps D.Talbott could respond to that, a bit?

IE, just because those who may well have been "later" didn't speak in "catastrophic" terms (having not witnessed them first-hand), does not mean that the original stories weren't preserved mostly or partly intact (albeit potentially degraded by something akin to "Classical Bowdlerism"). Hence why it may be best to go back to the most archaic texts & symbolism, and to utilize the "archetypes" Talbott proposes in order to find the points of agreement between widely dispersed cultures' mythology. IE, many cultures across the globe have the archetype of the "Hero & the Serpent;" In many cultures, the hero is identified as "Mars," the morning star or the goddess with Venus, the primeval star with Saturn. Some are more emphatic about specific associations than others. These may be perspective issues, or may be cultural issues. Many cultures likewise have the "axis mundi," "world tree," "rainbow bridge," "pillar of heaven" motif that bridges the gap or (in some way) "physically" connects Earth to Heaven.

I think this "gradual corruption" or "localization" of the mythic traditions is the reason why Talbott, et al insist on beaing careful about using universal archetypes rather than localized traditions. IE, local traditions may add a lot of embellishments, remove particular bits and pieces of the story over time, etc. Though the core story, relationships, archetypes themselves may remain all or mostly intact / identifiable.

For instance, say, in one story the warrior's weapon of choice is a hammer, in another, it's a bow and arrow, in a third it's a sword that's used to kill the chaotic serpent. Does that necessarily mean that the interaction looked like a hammer or a bow or a sword? Not necessarily. If all of them also identified the weapon with "lightning" or the "thunderbolt," that might be the point of agreement (in addition to the other two or three; the warrior & the serpent doing battle roundabout the time of "doomsday," as with Thor & Jormungand at Ragnarok)

Anyway, if anyone else has other input or corrections, feel free...

Cheers,
~Michael Gmirkin
No problem, but you do seem to have missed other posts where I've stated that I agree that there have been catastrophes - I'm not a 'catastrophe denier'. Personally, I think we are due another one soon.
Hence why it may be best to go back to the most archaic texts & symbolism, ...
I couldn't agree more with this and I agree that over time myths were altered. I think this was one of my 'cautions' in my opening post and DT has already commented upon it vis-a-vis Greek versus Roman sources.

I understand what you are saying about DT et al and the use of the universal rather than the localised but surely it's the localised which, collectively, make up the universal? Another of my original cautions addressed the opposite of this: that, in using universals/archetypes, there is a danger of 'seeing the devil behind every tree', so to speak and every myth story being about catastrophe.

"Classical Bowdlerism". Take any prize off the top shelf for that one. Brilliant phrase, fantastic concept - you could start a new literary genre. I'm not being sarcastic either - it really cracked me up.
If I have the least bit of knowledge
I will follow the great Way alone
and fear nothing but being sidetracked.
The great Way is simple
but people delight in complexity.
Tao Te Ching, 53.

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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by moses » Thu Apr 17, 2008 6:35 pm

Thus it was only after Saturn went away that another Divine Wisdom could arise.
Hi Mo,
Would you have a favorite myth.is.story recounting this sequence of events?
Cheers,
s

That would require me to go into the Divine Wisdom, and although I have read
hundreds of books on this subject, I think it inappropriate.
Mo

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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by seasmith » Thu Apr 17, 2008 7:40 pm

~
Moses wrote:
Thus it was only after Saturn went away that another Divine Wisdom could arise.
Yo Mo,

I'm farly clueless as regards "Divine Wisdom".
My question was more along the line of my initial post {which seems to have vaporized in the postal reshuffle, as there is No Bottom to page 1 of this thread ??},
and to which i thought You were alluding. :geek:
Anyvia, i think i was asking about any myths recounting a [possible] vanquishment of proto-Cronos by a proto-Zeus , heralding the appearance of Sun and Moon.

:D
s

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MGmirkin
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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by MGmirkin » Tue Apr 22, 2008 12:01 am

Grey Cloud wrote:I understand what you are saying about DT et al and the use of the universal rather than the localised but surely it's the localised which, collectively, make up the universal? Another of my original cautions addressed the opposite of this: that, in using universals/archetypes, there is a danger of 'seeing the devil behind every tree', so to speak and every myth story being about catastrophe.
Well, I think that the "points of agreement" amongst dispersed traditions are what D.Talbott, et al might refer to as the "universal story" or "archetypes," as opposed to necessarily interpreting ALL of a specific local tradition on its own in vacuo (on its own), as it were. So, in that respect, I suppose one could say that the collective of [the points of agreement between] local traditions make up or illuminate the archetypes.

Agreed on the perils of becoming the "man with a hammer who see everything as a nail." However, if one delves into the archetypes and/or archetypal narratives, one does in fact see rather strong correspondences multi-culturally. And many or most of the archetypes / motifs still in use today may descend from the original progenitor archetype(s). Vis a vis, many fables / myths wherein there is a dichotomous relationship between "radiant" and "terrible" female figure aspects, which may descend allegorically from the original archetypes of the "radiant" and "terrible" goddess. Perhaps I've not quite expressed that properly.

Anyway, tracing current myth / fable archetypes (Radiant maiden vs Terrible witch/stepmother/crone, etc.) back through various iteration to the original archetypes might be a task for another day. I just wonder if things which may appear to not necessarily bear literal resemblance to the original archetypes (if they exist as D.Talbott, et al claim) may bear figurative or some other transliterative resemblance. IE, in Snow White there is the evil queen / witch who is quite beautiful, and yet also transfigures herself into the twisted / evil crone. I suppose my question, tentatively, would be whether that story was an "original invention" or whether it harkens back to similar stories, which themselves harken back to others, closer to some "original" story?

But, will every story or fiction trace back to an original? I don't know. Plenty of bright minds out there these days. And ye olde invention vs. convention in folklore is always at work. So, there may not be a good answer to that. I suppose the question could be narrowed in scope to "classical" or earlier european, middle eastern, oriental traditions of a similar era to see whether THOSE correspond(ed) to the mythic archetypes. Likewise traditions of indigenous peoples that haven't been too "tampered with" by "modern" societies. IE, if their traditions have remained largely unchanged, or rather have been maintained / preserved more rigorously over time without too much outside interference... It might be interesting to compare some of those mythic traditions, and see how they stack up.

I hope I've not gone too far afield...
Grey Cloud wrote:"Classical Bowdlerism". Take any prize off the top shelf for that one. Brilliant phrase, fantastic concept - you could start a new literary genre. I'm not being sarcastic either - it really cracked me up.
I'm hoping that was a compliment. ;)

I think it was... :)

~Michael
"The purpose of science is to investigate the unexplained, not to explain the uninvestigated." ~Dr. Stephen Rorke
"For every PhD there is an equal and opposite PhD." ~Gibson's law

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divine wisdom

Unread post by starbiter » Tue Apr 22, 2008 8:57 am

I have no answers about God. I'm suspicious of people who quote God. On the other hand, this chapter from the V archive opens a few interesting possibilities. The chapters before and after this link are interesting.
http://www.varchive.org/itb/nefilim.htm


This was not a hard prediction in Velikovsky's scheme of things, i think. Just a long shot. If the big dudes could arrive here from the Moon are Mars, they may of had something interesting to say.




Nefilim
The present state of the Moon and of Mars and other celestial bodies does not imply that in the past they were equally desolate. Concerning Mars and Moon we have the testimony of our ancestors, supported by modern observations, that these bodies were engaged in near-collisions only a few thousand years ago. It is not excluded that under conditions prevailing on their surfaces prior to these events, life could have developed there or elsewhere in the solar system to an advanced stage.

Working in the early 1940’s on Worlds in Collision, which in its original form covered also the cataclysmic events preceding the Exodus, I wondered at a certain description that sounded like a visit from space.(1)

The sixth chapter of the book of Genesis starts this way:


And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them, that the sons of God [bnei Elim] saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.(2)

The story told in Genesis VI about the sons of God (bnei Elim) coming to the daughters of men is usually explained as referring to an advanced priesthood that mingled with backward tribesmen.(3) When Columbus discovered America, the natives, according to the diary of his first voyage, regarded him and his crew as having arrived from the sky.(4) A similar occurrence could have taken place in prediluvial times, when some invaders from a remote part of the world came and were regarded as “sons of God.”

But if we are today on the eve of interplanetary travel, we must not declare as absolutely impossible the thought that this Earth was visited, ages ago, by some people from another planet. Or was this earth alone populated by intelligent beings? In my understanding this passage from the book of Genesis is a literary relic dealing with a visit of intelligent beings from another planet.

It appears that the extraterrestrial visitors made their landing as if in advance knowledge of the impending catastrophe of the Deluge.(5) It could be that Jupiter and Saturn were approaching each other ever closer on their orbits and that a disruption of one of them was expected.(6)

Possibly many centuries, or even millennia, passed between the landing and the Deluge. The mission could have been undertaken to ascertain the conditions on Earth. If it was an escape it could also have been from another catastrophe in the solar system, one of those that preceded the Deluge, like the one described as the dethronement and emasculation of Uranus by Kronos. If the ancient legends of a battle between the gods and titans, so persistent in the Greek world, but also in the mythologies of other civilizations, have any historical value, we may try to find what may have been the substratum of this fantasy. It seems that following great convulsions of nature observable in the celestial sphere, giant bodies were hurled on the earth. They arrived burned and were crushed by impact.(7) But at least one group of escapees suceeded in safely reaching the earth.(8) They descended on Mount Hermon or Anti-Lebanon.(9) Of the extra-biblical traditions dealing with the subject some reach hoary antiquity, antecedent to the composition of the Biblical texts. The Book of Enoch narrates that the group was composed of males only, two hundred in number, under the leadership of one by the name of Shemhazai.(10) The Aggadic literature says that the “sons of God” tried to return to heaven from where they had come, but could not.(11)

The new arrivals were probably of gigantic stature—their progeny with women of the earth were giants:


The Nephilim were on earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men, and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men that were of old, the men of renown.(12)

Having fathered giants, they themselves must have been not of human size.(13)

The planet from which they came I would not know to determine. El would refer to Saturn.(14) The great size of the visitors would suggest a smaller body where the gravitational influence would be less.(15)

Ten thousand years is only an instant in the life of the cosmos; ten thousand years ago man was only in a rude stone age; today he contemplates to visit other planets. If such progress is made in a time as short as this, who knows what secrets are concealed in the past or in the future?
I Ching #49 The Image
Fire in the lake: the image of REVOLUTION
Thus the superior man
Sets the calender in order
And makes the seasons clear

www.EU-geology.com

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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by nick c » Tue Apr 22, 2008 10:03 am

Grey Cloud wrote:
If this is the case, taking the Greco-Roman period for example, we should find references to catastrophic events by classical authors when they discuss myths. And one should bear in mind here that these authors had access to an untold number of texts that are now lost to us.
Classical authors make numerous references to world wide catastrophes in the past. Not to go retro (catastrophically speaking) but consult "Worlds In Collision," look up the names of classical writers in the index and you'll surely find numerous references...Ovid, Plato, Seneca, Plutarch, and others.
Some examples, but only scratching the surface,
Ovid, in "Metamorphoses" on the myth of Phaethon:
The earth bursts into flame, the highest parts first, splits into deep cracks, and its moisture is all dried up. The meadows are consumed, green leaves and all...Great cities perish with their walls, and the vast conflagration reduces whole nations to ashes.
Plato, in "Timaeus and Critias"....
Egyptian priest to Solon:
Your own story of Phaethon, child of the Sun, harnessed his father's chariot, but was unable to guide it along his father's course and so burnt up things on earth and was himself destroyed by a thunderbolt is a mythical version of the truth...
and why have we no record, according to Plato, of the catastrophes?
...writing and the other necessities of civilization have only just been developed when the periodic scourge of deluge descends, and spares none but the unlettered and uncultured so that you have to begin again like children...
Actually, the above is not the reason, imhop, in fact there is plenty of records of cosmic catastrophes in classic literature, ancient texts, etc etc., much of it is quite literal, but we have a tendency to disbelieve even when it is spelled out in a matter of fact manner. It is that we don't recognize the story when it is told to us, prefering to see metaphor and poetic license when (extinction threatening) catastrophe from the sky is clearly indicated.
Nick

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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by MGmirkin » Tue Apr 22, 2008 10:32 am

nick c wrote:Actually, the above is not the reason, imho, in fact there is plenty of records of cosmic catastrophes in classic literature, ancient texts, etc etc.; much of it is quite literal. But we have a tendency to disbelieve even when it is spelled out in a matter of fact manner. It is that we don't recognize the story when it is told to us, preferring to see metaphor and poetic license when (extinction threatening) catastrophe from the sky is clearly indicated.

Nick
Well, it's not entirely unexpected that people sitting under peaceful skies should scoff at the notion of the falling sky. IE, it is not part of our current experience... We have no personal connection to it, thus we cognitive dissonance it out of existence.

Plus, we all love the cutesy story of Chicken Little who is repeatedly told to stop telling everyone that "the sky is falling," because it isn't.

But it may have been then. If the classical authors or their forebears tell us in explicit terms that the sky WAS in fact falling *then* why should we disbelieve them? Simply because the sky is no longer falling? Because the skies are now peaceful? Because there are not currently "gods and monsters" ruling the sky, but a nice relatively "clockwork" solar system? Does the latter preclude the former?

IE, is the present ACTUALLY the key to the past? Or is it possible that events which occurred in the past are no longer occurring?

Even if one fully discounts the specifics of the Saturn Configuration theory (as is one's right if one does not find it compelling). Is it completely impossible that earlier in the solar system's evolution (on the Standard Model's terms) that there may have been a time when the system was less stable, and closer / more dangerous interactions were more common? IE, if constituents of the system were more closely packed, or on more erratic orbits that brought them into proximity, is it not possible that catastrophic events could have occurred more readily then than they do now? If one assumes that the system has in some way self-stabilized (whether gravitationally or electrically)?

I guess the question then is whether Chicken Little would have been right some 10,000 years ago, while still being "obviously" wrong today. Granted, we get the occasional meteor shower, or meteorite popping through the Earth's atmosphere. But currently nothing on the order of a "great deluge." But, does that mean we should then consider classical or ancient texts in the light of today's world and exclude the possibility that the world may have looked much different at the time (or a bit before the time) the texts were written. If we interpret the texts through modern eyes, they cannot help but look preposterous since they match nothing in modern experience. Thus the natural tendency is to relegate the stories to only that. "Stories," "legends," "myths," "fables," "fanciful imaginings," "morality tales," "allegories," "metaphors," etc.

Don't get me wrong, as I've not made up my mind. Rather, I'm simply saying that an open mind is necessary. And a willingness to follow various lines of evidence wherever they lead. Which is not the same thing as "simple acceptance from on high," but rather an informed inquiry into what does or doesn't fit with what is being said. Point counterpoint. Riposte, dodge, parry, slash. Ohh, wait, we're not fencing... :oops:

Well, you get the idea.
~Michael Gmirkin
"The purpose of science is to investigate the unexplained, not to explain the uninvestigated." ~Dr. Stephen Rorke
"For every PhD there is an equal and opposite PhD." ~Gibson's law

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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by Grey Cloud » Tue Apr 22, 2008 11:18 am

Hi Nick
Thanks for your input but I feel that you are quoting me slightly out of context as in the paragraph preceding I wrote:
If you guys are correct then, yes, one should see abundant references to catastrophic events, etc in these stories and a minimal number of stories relating to, e.g., a common spirituality or philosophy.
In this paragraph the point I was trying to make was about the relative number of examples of catastrophe and spirituality. Or, put another way, for every catastrophe story I could produce a spirituality story. Frequently these would be the same story. For example Plutarch in Isis and Osiris gives four interpretations of the mythm plus one of his own. None of the five agree with either my or David's interpretations.
Another point I have made somewhere concerns treating all ancients as ancients, for example you mentioned Ovid who is dated 43 BCE - 17 CE. That is a long time after, say Homer who is dated around 850 BCE.
Your example of Phaeton brings up another point which I feel is relevant, the tying of each and every catastrophe reference to the Saturn, Mars, Venus model. The story of Phaeton, as I understand it, doesn't feature any of these three. To me the story makes more sense if viewed as describing the Earth moving abnormally, whether from a pole shift or Hapgood's crustal displacement or some other cause. I'm not sure off the top of my head but I think it is in Timaeus where the Egyptian priest mentions the sun formerly rising in the West in the past.

Ciao
If I have the least bit of knowledge
I will follow the great Way alone
and fear nothing but being sidetracked.
The great Way is simple
but people delight in complexity.
Tao Te Ching, 53.

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Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by Grey Cloud » Tue Apr 22, 2008 11:40 am

Hi Starbiter,
Thanks for the link, I will check it out.
Re the sons of God, daughters of men thing I have my own thoughts about that but it would take us way off-topic.
Re the giants, I don't have any problem with that and feel the subject may well be related to the Saturn model with regard to gravity. I don't have the technicals to develop my thoughts any further.
I don't subscribe to the Darwinian theory that we climbed down from the trees and have evolved up to where we are today. If we were 'stone-age' people 10,000 years ago then it was because we were post-catastrophe.

Could you let me know know, maybe PM me, whose translation of the I Ching you are using as my Bart Marshall translation gives the following for #49:

The sage has no heart or mind of his own.
Thus, he knows the heart and mind of all.

I am good to the good
and good to the not-so-good.
This is the goodness of Virtue.

I trust the trustworthy
and have faith in those who should not be trusted.
This is the faith of Virtue.

The sage is in harmony
with the realm of heaven and earth.
His mind is merged with the world.
People turn to him and listen.
He treats them as his children.
If I have the least bit of knowledge
I will follow the great Way alone
and fear nothing but being sidetracked.
The great Way is simple
but people delight in complexity.
Tao Te Ching, 53.

Grey Cloud
Posts: 2477
Joined: Sun Apr 13, 2008 5:47 am
Location: NW UK

Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by Grey Cloud » Tue Apr 22, 2008 11:50 am

To Michael,
That Chicken Little sure was a smart little fella. I wish I had paid more attention at school.
If I have the least bit of knowledge
I will follow the great Way alone
and fear nothing but being sidetracked.
The great Way is simple
but people delight in complexity.
Tao Te Ching, 53.

David Talbott
Site Admin
Posts: 336
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Cautionary Note

Unread post by David Talbott » Tue Apr 22, 2008 1:22 pm

On the Nature of Mythic "Giants"

It is my contention that, if one will trace the different "giant" themes backwards, they will lead directly to ancient images of celestial powers. The fabled age of giants will echo the age of gods and wonders. The remote "land of the giants" will be a faint recollection of the land of the gods. Huge edifices claimed to have been built by giants will have their earlier counterpart in the cosmic mountains, temples, cities and kingdoms built by the warrior-hero as demiurge. Wars of the giants will be seen as diluted versions of the wars of the gods, as reflected (for example) in Greek tales of the Clash of the Titans. As a general rule the age of the giants will end in the same kind of world-destroying catastrophe that ended the rule of great gods themselves.

Internal consistency and consistency between layers of evidence will always be crucial tests of a theory, and any suggestion that the "age of giants" could refer to a period of unusually large human beings must be subject to the consistency test. It is certainly true that around the world, folk traditions associated various cultural remains with the activity of giants. They marveled at pyramids and towers and broken walls of former peoples. Popular Arabic tradition identifies "giants" as the builders of Middle Eastern megaliths. The Greeks proclaimed that a generation of giants had built the great fortifications at Tiryns and Mycenae. Scattered megaliths across Europe invited the same idea. Throughout Mesoamerica and South America it was claimed that the massive remains of earlier cultures had been constructed by giants. Similar ideas will be found in the South Pacific.

Well, it is certainly true that if earlier generations were big enough, then building some of the larger monuments might have been easier. But if this explanation is entertained, should we not apply it also to those remarkably similar instances in which NATURAL features - mountains, gullies, ridges, canyons, and rivers were identified with the former activity of giants?

In northern Ireland there is the famous Clochan an Aifir, the "Giant's Causeway". It is constituted by huge hexagonal, basaltic columns, formed from the cooling of lava, and reaching as high as 200 feet or so. Native tradition claimed that these were built by a race of giants as a means of crossing the Irish Sea. In fact this kind of motif is quite common and was attached to the natural formation called the "Bridge of the Gods" on the Columbia River not all that far from my own home town. So there was not just one natural "bridge" claimed to have been built by giants or gods.

A good place to start in an exploration of the "giant" theme would be Greek myth, because it stands in an ambiguous zone between the more archaic world, in which the gods are celestial powers, and a later world in which the gods have been brought down to earth and localized as "great men". The Greek Gigantes are sons of the earth goddess Gaia. When the god Ouranos is "castrated" by his son and alter ego Kronos, the planet Saturn, it is from his blood that the Gigantes arise. They are not just "large" human-like creatures. They are towering forms capable of shaking heaven and earth.

This birth of the Gigantes is virtually synchronous with birth of the goddess Aphrodite from the "foam" of the severed members of Ouranos. Aphrodite is, of course, the planet Venus.

In Greek literature the Gigantes are directly involved in battles with the gods. Often they were depicted with serpent-tails. Their weapons were "mountains" (in truth, the world mountain itself). And yet, though numerous gods were drawn into the fray, and the earth reeled under the crashing of weaponry, it is fascinating to note that it was a so-called "mortal" warrior-hero, Heracles, who slew the two leaders of the revolt. But Heracles is, as we have seen, the echo of an explicitly cosmic figure in the earlier traditions.

Indeed, the war with the giants is essentially an extension of the Clash of the Titans. The Greeks regarded the Titans as "ancestors" of humanity, and that ancestry is remarkably similar to various ancestral ties to "giants" in the different cultures. The epoch of the Titan's rule was synchronous with the remarkable epoch of Kronos, the planet Saturn. Kronos himself was the chief of the Titans, all of whom were sons of Ouranos, as were the Gigantes. According to Hesiod, at the close of the Golden Age of Kronos, the Titans fell into discord and fought with the gods of Olympos :

"...And the infinite great sea moaned terribly and the earth crashed aloud, and the wide sky resounded as it was shaken, and tall Olympos rocked on its bases....Now Zeus no longer held in his strength, but here his heart filled deep with fury, and now he showed his violence entire and indiscriminately...Out of the sky and off Olympos he moved flashing his fires incessantly, and the thunderbolts....while the flames went up to the bright sky unquenchably, and the blaze and the glare of the thunder and lightning blinded the eyes of the Titan gods, for all they were mighty. The wonderful conflagration crushed Chaos, and to the eyes' seeing and ears' hearing the clamor of it, it absolutely would have seemed as if Earth and the wide heaven above her had collided, for such would have been the crash arising as Earth wrecked and the sky came piling down on top of her, so vast was the crash heard as the gods collided in battle."

More to say on this if there's interest. The fastest path to a comprehension of the theme is to explore the symbolism of the warrior hero over time, and in particular the way his "terrible aspect" as a giant gets passed down through phases of cultural assimilation.

David Talbott

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