Skip to comments.Tracking Myth to Geological Reality
Posted on 11/05/2005 12:20:12 PM PST by Lessismore
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The following websites are portals into the realm of myth and catastrophe based on the work of Immanuel Velikovsky, author of the 1950's best seller "Worlds in Collision".
walter alter artist - wiseguy - savant
The skeptics seem to call anything they don't understand "myth". Yet these so called myths have been repeatedly proven to be fact as shovels of sand unearth the proof. These skeptics are metaphysically challenged and seem to view ANY and ALL religions as a conscious social creation of humans. Right. I wonder if there isn't a kernal of truth to the various "myths" and supernatural stories of humans who originated the "myths" and religions---possibly a visitation from the metaphysical realm (angels, demons, etc) which of course cannot be scientifically reproduced. Hey, if the bible says it, I believe it. It has an amazing track record archaeologically, historically, and prophectically. Alot more statistically significant than that of the so called experts (skeptics).
Actually they haven't; what's happened is that many have been shown to have some portion of truth behind them, but they're generally never precisely correct or completely factual.
For example, it's quite obvious and easily demonstrable that the entire earth has never been flooded with water at the same time, certainly not during the time that humans have existed.
However, It's POSSIBLE that the Biblical flood myth has some origin in a sudden Black Sea flood (that, incidentally, had nothing to do with "Forty Days and Forty Nights" of rainfall or any rainfall at all).
Well, if you can accept there being an invisible man in the sky, I guess we shouldn't be so quick to dismiss minotaurs and snakes with antlers.
It may be more accurate to think of them as stories or oral traditions, rather than myths.
And myth doesn't necessarily connote "false." One definition is "truth told in different form."
"Let there be light." or "Subatomic particles cooled enough for photons to escape." could be different ways to say the same thing.
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Velikovsky was a classic. The crushed mammoths and sabertooth cats he described in Fairbanks gold placer mines are still here, mysterious as ever.
The First Fossil Hunters:
Greek and Roman Times
by Adrienne Mayor
Fossil Legends of the First Americans
by Adrienne Mayor
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The Fall and Rise of Catastrophism[T]he scientific issues have been clouded by a supposed association between catastrophism and religion. Rightly or wrongly, it has generally been thought that the catastrophists of the nineteenth century and earlier believed that God was directly involved in determining the history of the Earth... It should go without saying that twentieth century catastrophism, often called neocatastrophism, is founded entirely in science, relying solely on natural forces for its explanations, but was eighteenth and nineteenth century catastrophism completely different? Was it so dominated by supernatural elements that any scientific content it may have claimed was without value? That was certainly the prevailing view for most of the present century. Catastrophists have been condemned for putting dogma before observational science, whereas their rivals, the gradualists (also called uniformitarians) have been praised for taking the opposite stance.
by Trevor Palmer
Very enjoyable article, thanks. Geomyths. Will we believe what the ancients try to tell us or ignore their efforts to describe their experiences?
That misses the subtle difference between gradualism and uniformitarianism, or at least can be misleading to laymen. Uniformitarianism doesn't have to be so strict that there aren't catastrophic events.
Nobody listens to geologists, anyway...why should we listen to geologists who augment their study with the advantage of myths? :-(
But one point that must be clear is that not all myths have the predictive power that others do. And if you've played the party game "telephone," don't you wonder how the knowledge gets passed on accurately? Some elements are crucial to stories, others are not...so one part of a myth might be real, and the other not.
Uniformitarianism doesn't have to be so strict that there aren't catastrophic events.That misses the not-so-subtle century and a half or so of strictly political struggle against catastrophe (of any kind) as an explanation for anything. There is still resistance to the consequences of impacts from space (or even the reality thereof) on Earth, on the Moon, on Mars...
It remains easy to bash Bretz' critics, just as it is easy to bash Barringer's (Meteor Crater AZ) critics, or for that matter, Aristotle who wrote that stones don't fall from the sky, but rather have been picked up by the winds from elsewhere. An argument similar to Aristotle's has been used to "explain" beech tree fossils recovered from Antarctica, and dating less than 3 million years old (IOW, that the fossils were carried there by the wind -- speaking of lazy explanations).Channeled Scablands: OverviewBeginning in 1923, J. Harlan Bretz began arguing that the curious channeled terrain of Washington State was the result of stupendous floods. This idea was highly controversial. It is, of course, easy to bash Bretz's critics in hindsight, until we recall that catastrophist theories are a dime a dozen and are often the lazy way to explain phenomena. In 1925, J.T Pardee suggested that sudden drainage of a large glacial lake could have supplied the water, but it is not until the 1940's that he follows this suggestion up with field investigations.
by Steven Dutch
University of Wisconsin - Green Bay
9 April 2003, Last Update 21 November 2003
My point is that while extreme views of concepts (e.g., Lyell's) might have held much of the attention, there were plenty who saw it more like we do today.
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