An A-Z Guide To The Search For Plato's Atlantis

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Joining The Dots


Joining The Dots

I have now published my new book, Joining The Dots, which offers a fresh look at the Atlantis mystery. I have addressed the critical questions of when, where and who, using Plato's own words, tempered with some critical thinking and a modicum of common sense.


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John Ackerman

Moon, The

The Moon has little connection with Plato’s Atlantis story apart from the more extreme speculations of some writers. One of the wildest is that the Atlanteans had established a research facility on the Moon(a), an idea rivalled by that of Alan Butler & Christopher Knight in their book, Who Built the Moon[0937], in which they propose that the Moon was ‘constructed’! This idea has now been revived by Rob Shelsky[1584]. In 1965, the Umland brothers[833] proposed that the Moon was a communications relay station for the Maya to make contact with their home planet!

In 1970, Michael Vasin and Alexander Shcherbakov, of what was then the Soviet Academy of Sciences, advanced a hypothesis that the Moon is a spaceship created by unknown beings.(k) 

The idea that the Moon was to some extent hollow was given impetus in the 1970’s, when a study of moonquakes revealed that the Moon ‘rang like a bell’ (i). Now, nearly half a century later, Wallace Thornhill, a leading Electric Universe proponent, has endorsed the hollow Moon idea and seems sympathetic to the idea of a hollow earth. This was expressed at a recent EU conference and be viewed at the 40-minute mark of a YouTube video.(j)

The origins of the Moon have also been the subject of extensive controversy with one side claiming that it had been ‘captured’ moonby the earth, while the other extreme argues that it had been ‘expelled’ from our planet. The expulsion theory posits(b) that a collision with another celestial body tore material from the Earth, which in time became our Moon(h). Nils Olof Bergquist writing in the 1940’s supported the expulsion scenario and had his original Swedish book on the subject translated into English as The Moon Puzzle[0786].

The most radical of the captured moon school was Hanns Hörbiger, who proposed that there had been a series of Moon captures. Many of his ideas were adopted by H.S. Bellamy, who added that the capture of our current satellite had caused the destruction of Atlantis. Nikolay Bonev, the astronomer, caused a stir in 1961 when he expressed the view that our Moon had once been an independent planet(d) that had experienced violent volcanic eruptions that were powerful enough to have produced a ‘recoil’ effect, which nudged it towards our Earth’s orbit and was eventually captured as our satellite.

More recently Emilio Spedicato expressed similar ideas(c), claiming that material taken from another large extraterrestrial body around 9450 BC became our Moon, but that the event also led to the destruction of Atlantis. Stuart L. Harris has proposed(m) that the planet Nibiru had a close encounter with our Earth in 9577 BC that resulted in the destruction of Atlantis, followed by another visit in 9417 BC during which it lost one of its satellites, which became our Moon!

>John Ackerman, a keen follower of Immanuel Velikovsky claimed that there were two catastrophic events related to “the capture of the Moon into its current orbit,” marking both the beginning and the end of the Younger Dryas period(p).<

The Moon controversies continue with the recent suggestion by Erik Asphaug, a professor of earth and planetary sciences at the University of California, Santa Cruz, who claims that originally the Earth had two moons that coalesced into a single satellite (n)!

Gary Gilligan, the catastrophist, also supports the concept of moon capture but dated this event to as recent as 2000 BC(f) and then later advanced it to 1200 BC(g). Researcher, Mark Andrew commenting on Gilligan’s claims wrote that Although Gilligan promises more evidence to come, his theory has to contend with the varied evidence of an earlier Moon, including the earliest known written myth of the Moon’s death and rebirth, the epic poem Descent of Inanna (dating from 1750 BC), and also the oldest known map of the moon (dating from 2800 BC).”(l)

Unexpectedly, the orbital speed of the Moon appears to vary on its trip around the Earth(e).

Some of the ideas above regarding the origin of the Moon are clearly extremist and are far more radical than a recent theory regarding the Sun proposed by Ev Cochrane, a comparative mythologist, in a YouTube clip(o), where he offers evidence that the Sun as observed in ancient times seemed quite different to how we see it today. This is borne out by the related mythologies and petroglyphs from our ancient past and show a global consistency that cannot be explained by imagination.

(a) See: Archive 3334

(b) http://www.q-mag.org/moon-mars-impacts-and-collisions.html

(c)  https://aisberg.unibg.it/retrieve/handle/10446/316/1369/WPMateRi05%282008%29SpedicatoPetruzzi.pdf

(d) https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2229&dat=19611112&id=VQIzAAAAIBAJ&sjid=7QAGAAAAIBAJ&pg=4738,1928190&hl=en

(e) https://malagabay.wordpress.com/2015/11/09/the-clockwork-moon/

(f) https://grahamhancock.com/earth-capture-the-moon-gilligan/

(g) http://www.gks.uk.com/moon-origin-egyptian/

(h) http://www.q-mag.org/moon-mars-impacts-and-collisions.html

(i) https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/home/15mar_moonquakes.html

(j) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gouqy4OghyY

(k) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hollow_Moon

(l) https://web.archive.org/web/20160710150837/https://atlantisrisingmagazine.com/article/late-arrival/

(m) https://www.academia.edu/37216933/Sinking_of_Atlantis_by_Nibiru_in_9577_BC_Part_3_Nibiru_sinks_Atlantis

(n) http://nautil.us/issue/74/networks/when-the-earth-had-two-moons-rp

(o) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4eAwUiadZHY

>(p) http://www.firmament-chaos.com/va_scenario.html<

Nibiru

Nibiru was a Sumerian astronomical term used to describe a planetary body that periodically approached Earth. This account was hijacked by the late Zechariah Sitchin to construct his Planet X theory in which he claimed that this planet had an orbit which took it to the outer limits of the solar system returning every 3600 years to the vicinity of Earth. Sitchin claimed that during one of these visits some of its inhabitants came to earth and become the ‘gods’ of the Sumerians. However, Sitchin failed to explain how the inhabitants of this Planet X survived the lack of heat and light that it would have had to endure as it moved away from the proximity of the Sun. For us inhabitants of Earth a drop of just a few degrees is fatal.

However, Emilio Spedicato has a radically different and certainly more rational view of this Sumerian planet.  He ascribes a much shorter orbital period of 20 years to Nibiru and claims that close encounters with this planet (and its satellites) had a dramatic physical effect on the prehistory of our planet including the capturing of our Moon, the destruction of Atlantis and later the biblical Exodus! His scenario has elements that can be traced to Velikovsky, Ackerman and Hörbiger.

Professor Spedicato’s November 2012 paper, From Nibiru to Tiamat, an Astronomic Scenario for Earliest Sumerian Cosmology, can be read or downloaded from the excellent Diffusion and Migration website(1). A number of his other papers can be found on the same website and are certainly worth studying.

In sharp contrast to the serious work of Spedicato, for the past couple of years we have been subjected to a barrage of silly articles(b) linking Nibiru with the promised 2012 global catastrophes ‘predicted’ by the Mayan calendar.

A debunking of both Sitchin’s scholarship and the existence of Nibiru has been offered by a number of sites(c).

*Nevertheless, in 2018, Stuart L. Harris published three papers (e-g) proposing Rockall as the location of Atlantis, which was destroyed by an encounter with Nibiru in 9577 BC.*

However, some people, such as David Meade (a pen-name) who describes himself as a ‘Christian numerologist’ predicted that Nibiru would collide with Earth on September 23, 2017! When this did not happen he moved the event to October, but again nothing happened. But he persisted and subsequently moved our demise to March 2018, then April, with a final suggestion for the year of between May and December(d).

(a) http://www.migration-diffusion.info/article.php?year=2012&id=351

(b) http://yowusa.com/

(c) https://archive.is/AoTJ7

(d) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Meade_(author)

*(e) https://www.academia.edu/37216922/Sinking_of_Atlantis_by_Nibiru_in_9577_BC_Part_1_discovery_west_of_Eire

(f) https://www.academia.edu/37216928/Sinking_of_Atlantis_by_Nibiru_in_9577_BC_Part_2_Mechanics_of_Sinking

(g) https://www.academia.edu/37216933/Sinking_of_Atlantis_by_Nibiru_in_9577_BC_Part_3_Nibiru_sinks_Atlantis*

Younger Dryas

Younger Dryas also known as Dryas III was a mini Ice Age that lasted from around 10,700 BC until around 9600 BC. It is named after a wildflower called Dryas octopetala that flourished during this relatively short period. In Ireland the period is known as the Nahanagan Stadial and in Britain as the Loch Lomond Stadial. For about thirteen hundred years the glaciers had been slowly retreating until within a short timespan temperatures dropped and they began to advance again. The cause of this cooling is not absolutely clear. One view is that a sudden release into the North Atlantic of vast quantities of fresh water that had been contained by huge ice dams is assumed to have closed down the Gulf Stream, resulting in a twelve hundred year lowering of global temperatures. There is evidence that the change only took one or two decades. The same threat is said to exist today with the possibility of the melting of the Greenland ice cap.>It also seems that this YD cooling ended with the same rapidity.<

A recent application of archaeoastronomy by Martin Sweatman and Dimitrios Tsikritsis led them to conclude that the carved symbols at Göbekli Tepe recorded an encounter involving the explosion or impact of part of Encke’s Comet around 13,000 years ago, which triggered the Younger Dryas Event that provided the impetus for the Neolithic Revolution. Sweatman later expanded their work in his book Prehistory Decoded [1621] and in an article on the Ancient Origins website(k).

Kevin A. & Patrick J. Casey maintain that a globally catastrophic event occurred 13,000 years ago(j). The kernel of their theory is that originally the Earth had two moons that at some later point collided, producing our current Moon, while the remnant of the second one eventually exploded over North America kick-starting what we refer to as the cooler Younger Dryas period. They are adamant that it was not a comet or asteroid that caused the devastation, and so clash with the conclusions of Richard Firestone and his colleagues.

A completely different view is expressed in Rod (Carl) Martin’s latest book [1623], where he proposes that the Younger Dryas ended as a result of a catastrophic event.>Is it possible that there were two cataclysmic episodes? John Ackerman, a keen follower of Immanuel Velikovsky claims that there were two such events related to “the capture of the Moon into its current orbit,” marking the beginning and the end of the Younger Dryas period(q).<

In 2015, a paper constraining the impact date to within 100 years using Bayesian statistical analyses, now proposed as 12,835 -12,735 years ago(h).

Coincidentally, Emilio Spedicato independently arrived at the conclusion that it was a cometary impact in the North Atlantic that was responsible for the Younger Dryas. Subsequently, when temperatures rose again it resulted in the flooding of vast areas of low-lying landmasses that in Spedicato’s opinion included Atlantis, which he locates in Hispaniola.

Conflicting evidence regarding the possibility of the Younger Dryas being caused by such an impact is impartially outlined on the internet(a).

The November 2013 issue of the BBC Focus magazine (p.30) had a brief article on the impact theory, noting that the northern hemisphere saw a drop of as much as 15°C around 11,000BC. In the absence of a suitable impact crater of the right age, there is still much scientific scepticism(b).

However, in early 2017, further possible evidence of an impact at the start of the Younger Dryas was offered by a team led by Christopher Moore of the University of South Carolina, when they identified a distinct layer of platinum in the soil that coincided with the start of YD. Commenting on this anomaly Moore noted that “Platinum is very rare in the Earth’s crust, but it is common in asteroids and comets.”(e) In 2019, Moore published further data(m) supporting the extraterrestrial impact theory, based on studies carried out on sediments, which date back 20,000 years, from White Pond Lake, situated in southern Kershaw County, South Carolina. “Other examples of excessive platinum grains have been found across Europe, western Asia, Chile, South Africa and North America.” (n)

In early 2018, two papers were published online(i), reinforcing the YD impact theory and adding evidence that the event resulted in a conflagration that may have consumed ?10 million km2, or ?9% of Earth’s terrestrial biomass.” Related to this is a paper by Andrew Collins that draws attention to the ‘Usselo horizon’, a charcoal-rich layer of between 1 and 8 inches, found on all continents, indicating widespread fires, now dated to 12,900 years ago(l).

Ice cores from Greenland indicate a further cooling period circa 6200 BC that may be related to the abandonment of many Neolithic settlements during this period. Other periods of abrupt climate change have been identified from 3800 BC to 3500 BC and 2800 BC to 2000 BC.

The fact that Plato’s apparent date for the demise of Atlantis, circa 9600 BC, roughly corresponds with the current, best estimate for the date of the Younger Dryas is interesting but unfortunately not conclusive proof of any direct connection. In the absence of any supportive archaeological evidence, a linkage between Atlantis and the Younger Dryas will have to remain a matter of faith rather than fact. Interesting but inconclusive.

Recent discoveries in northern Sudan of dozens of skeletons, the majority of whom were apparently killed by flint-tipped arrows, have led to the suggestion(c) they were the result of food shortages resulting from the Younger Dryas that in turn led to warfare over diminished food availability.

I note that Robert Schoch claims that there is no evidence to support the Younger Dryas impact theory, instead he believes that “it was most likely due to reduced solar activity at that time, a solar shut-down.”(o) Schoch’s wide-ranging critique has been refuted by the Comet Research Group.(p)

(a) See: https://web.archive.org/web/20130310032309/http://blogs.nicholas.duke.edu/thegreengrok/climatedebate/

(b) http://www.livescience.com/39362-younger-dryas-meteor-quebec.html

(c) http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/archaeology/saharan-remains-may-be-evidence-of-first-race-war-13000-years-ago-9603632.html

(d) http://www.researchgate.net/publication/268390328_Nanodiamond-Rich_Layer_Across_Three_Continents_Consistent_with_Major_Cosmic_Impact_at_12800_Cal_BP

(f) http://www.space.com/17676-comet-crash-ice-age.html

(g) http://popular-archaeology.com/issue/winter-2017/article/discovery-of-widespread-platinum-may-help-solve-clovis-people-mystery

(h) http://cosmictusk.com/new-paper-younger-dryas-boundary-impact-date-constrained-within-100-years/

(i) https://www.dailygrail.com/2018/02/a-comet-impact-13000-years-ago-set-fire-to-10-of-the-planet/

(j) https://www.academia.edu/38380799/13k_Theory_Atlantis_Revisited.pdf

(k) https://www.ancient-origins.net/history-important-events/younger-dryas-0012216

(l) http://www.andrewcollins.com/page/articles/Lommel.htm

(m) https://theconversation.com/new-evidence-that-an-extraterrestrial-collision-12-800-years-ago-triggered-an-abrupt-climate-change-for-earth-118244

(n) https://edition.cnn.com/2019/10/29/world/ice-age-extraterrestrial-impact-scn/index.html

(o) https://www.robertschoch.com/plasma_iceage.html

(p) https://cosmictusk.com/comet-research-group-responds-to-robert-schoch/

>(q) http://www.firmament-chaos.com/va_scenario.html<

Spedicato, Emilio

Emilio Spedicato (1945- ) was born in Milan. He graduated in physics and is now working in numerical analysis and applied mathematics. He has held a full professorship at Bergamo University since 1984. In addition to his more conventional academic Spedicato_foto_2004pursuits, he also researches ‘non-standard models of planetary evolution and non-standard interpretation of myth and ancient religions.’

Spedicato has developed a list(a) of ‘54 theses for reconstructing Earth and human history during the catastrophic period 9500 to 700 BC’. This list is partly based on the work of Velikovsky, DeGrazia and Ackerman and is intended to be the basis of a larger work in book form. Some of his ideas will be seen as highly controversial such as the genetic manipulation of humans by extraterrestrial visitors. He locates the Garden of Eden and the ‘creation’ of Adam and Eve in the Hunza valley of modern Pakistan(e).

He ventured into further controversial territory with his support for an updated version of Hörbiger’s moon capture theory(f) and endorsement for pole shifts(g) after long periods of stability following encounters with large extraterrestrial bodies. He considers the last of these to have taken place in the 10th millennium BC.

Spedicato, in a series of papers delivered to the Atlantis Conference on Melos in 2005, linked the biblical Exodus with the Flood of Deucalion, which he dates as 1447 BC(d). He contended that these events were connected with the explosion of a large extraterrestrial body over Southern Denmark remembered in Greek tradition as Phaëton.

Atlantis has not escaped Spedicato’s attention and he has put forward the Caribbean island of Hispaniola as the home of Atlantis(b), specifically suggesting that Lake Enriquillo in the Cul-de-Sac Depression, which runs from Haiti across the border into the Dominican Republic. Spedicato accepts the possibility of the destruction of Atlantis around 9600 BC and has written an interesting paper(c) that links the demise of Atlantis with a direct asteroidal impact or a close encounter with a planet-sized body. Not without significance is the fact that Hispaniola is not submerged, in spite of the sea level rising hundreds of feet since the very early date proposed by Spedicato for the destruction of Atlantis, which should have sent it even deeper beneath the waves of the Caribbean.

Furthermore, leaving aside the question of submergence altogether, Spedicato does not explain how an Atlantis in the Caribbean could, in 9600 BC, have attacked Greece or Egypt, which did not exist as structured societies at that time.

Even more intriguing is why they would plan such a venture, considering a distance of 10,000 kilometers lay between them.

Spedicato has contributed at least a dozen papers to the Migration and Diffusion website including one on a possible Indian inspiration behind the Giza pyramid complex(h) as well as a paper(i) on the planet known to the Sumerians as Nibiru and today sometimes referred to as Planet X. He controversially claims that a close encounter with Nibiru around 9500 BC ended the last Ice Age and brought about the demise of Atlantis! A difficulty with that idea, is that if the encounter with Nibiru destroyed Atlantis AND ended the Ice Age how could the location where Atlantis was submerged still be marked by mud shoals 9,000 years later when sea levels had risen by 300-400 feet, as confirmed by Plato in Timeaus 25d?

*Another radical idea put forward by Spedicato was expressed in a paper delivered to the 2005 Atlantis Conference [629.411], in which he claimed that what he called ‘the ancestors of the Greeks’ had visited Canada. Based on his interpretation of excerpts from the writings of Plutarch, he specifies a region at the mouth of the St. Lawrence River as the point of contact. Manolis Koutlis goes further, suggesting that the Greeks had colonies there from 1500 BC until 1500 AD. Then in his book In the Shadow [1617] he adds the even more extraordinary claim that Atlantis had been situated on an island at the entrance to the St. Lawrence!*

In 2010, Spedicato published Atlantide e L’Esodo (Atlantis and Exodus) which is currently being translated into English.

In February 2015 Spedicato published another paper(j) with the radical proposal that the alignment of the three main Giza pyramids was not intended to be a reflection of the three stars in Orion’s belt, as proposed by Gilbert & Bauval[326], but instead were more closely matched to the arrangement of three volcanoes on Mars! He claims that these volcanoes were visible from Earth during Mars periodic close encounters with our planet between 7000 BC and 700 BC, during a 54-year cycle.

Later in 2015 the prolific Spedicato published another paper(k) in which he linked Mayan catastrophes with those of Hesiod, Plato and the Bible.

(a) http://www.cartesio-episteme.net/ep8/ep8-spedic.htm

(b) http://www.academia.edu/10973532/ATLANTIS_IN_HISPANIOLA_

(c) http://www.ecn.org/cunfi/spedicgalact.pdf

(d) http://www.2008-paris-conference.org/mapage13/deucalione-testo-inglese-1-.pdf

(e) http://www.emiliospedicato.it/geography-and-numerics-of-eden-kharsag-and-paradise-sumerian-and-enochian-sources-versus-the-genesis-tale/

(f)  http://aisberg.unibg.it/bitstream/10446/316/1/WPMateRi05(2008)SpedicatoPetruzzi.pdf

(g) http://www.unibg.it/dati/bacheca/63/21825.pdf

(h) http://www.migration-diffusion.info/article.php?id=353

(i) http://www.migration-diffusion.info/article.php?id=351

(j) http://www.migration-diffusion.info/article.php?year=2015&id=453

(k) http://rinabrundu.com/2015/10/25/dal-nuovo-sito-del-professor-emilio-spedicato-the-first-of-the-four-mayan-catastrophes-and-implications-on-biblical-statements/

Ackerman, John

John Ackerman (Pseudonym; Angiras) was born in Philadelphia and studied at the John Hopkins AckermanUniversity, where he received a degree in physics. After 35 years concerned with satellites and lasers, he retired early to study the work of catastrophist Immanuel Velikovsky and is now a leading exponent of that school of thought.

Ackerman has developed with his own particular brand entitled ‘cyclical catastrophism’(b). This particular aspect is developed in his book, Egyptian Astrophysics[1461],  which explores the Egyptian texts relating to the cyclical close encounters of the Earth with Mars and Venus between 3700 and 687 BC, proposed by Velikovsky.

Velikovsky claimed a number close encounters with Mars in the 7th and 8th centuries BC. The idea was taken up by, among others, Donald Patten[277] (1929-2014) and more recently expanded upon by Stuart Harris(c).

He claims to have identified two celestial events that occurred some 11,640 and 10,340 years ago, which had a profound effect on the Earth and its in habitants. Students of the Atlantis question cannot fail to note that the older date coincides exactly with the date that was apparently given to Solon for the demise of Atlantis.

Excerpts from Ackerman’s books are available on his website(a) where he outlines a bizarre view of Atlantis that closely mirrors that of Alan Alford, marrying it with the more extreme ideas of Velikovsky, placing it on Mars during a close encounter with the earth, with “its location now buried under the northern icecap on Mars”.

Ackerman’s best known books are Firmament[1417] and Chaos[1418] which gave him the title of his website.

(a) www.firmament-chaos.com/mythology_greek.html#atlantis

(b) http://cycliccatastrophism.org/

(c) http://www.migration-diffusion.info/article.php?year=2017&id=504