New Research Vindicates the Life Work of One or this Century’s Greatest Unsung Scientific Pioneers
by James Bowles
The scholarly study of geology, as opposed to mystical speculation, dates from the 18th century. Early geologists looked at the evidence before them that included highly folded and faulted rock layers, igneous flows, intrusions, and the remains of species that no longer walked the earth. They concluded that the earth’s history had been marked by a continuing series of catastrophic events. This view came to be referred to as Catastrophism.
Somewhat later, during the early l9th century, an opposing view emerged. Proponents noted events as they were occurring at the time. They saw that streams and rivers, although doing little in the way of destruction most of the time, could be tremendously destructive during floods. They saw that volcanoes and earthquakes were also benign most of the time, yet during brief spurts of energy could destroy entire communities. Their conclusion was that these everyday forces, acting over immense spans of time were quite capable of creating the world we now see. Their viewpoint became known as Uniformitarianism. In the debate that followed the proponents of Uniformitarianism prevailed and that philosophy, largely unquestioned until recently, has been the ruling view of geology ever since.
Today the old debate has been rejoined. Since Charles Hapgood’s book, Earth’s Shifting Crust, was published, dozens of articles have been published on a variety of recognized catastrophic geological events. One, Should we teach Uniformitarianism? by E. B. Heylmum (1971) set the tone for much modern thought. However, few if any of these contributions view geological catastrophes as worldwide simultaneous events, and perhaps not surprisingly, none that I’ve seen have listed Hapgood as a reference. The unique feature of Hapgood’s theory is the proposal that forces that build up over an extended period of time, have caused the earth’s entire crust to slip over its inner core, and that this has
occurred repeatedly in the earth’s history with disastrous effects.
I am neither a convinced proponent, nor opponent of the new Catastrophism as applied to Hapgood, but I am a very interested observer. Thus far the effort has been to show that it could have happened. What seems to be needed now is
proof that it has! F. N. Earll
Over a century ago, in the Origin of Species, Darwin suggested natural selection as the mechanism to account for evolution. But while few biologists seriously challenged the premise, difficulties nevertheless developed, particularly in regard to the extinction of some species and the sudden appearance of others. This growing unrest was ignored at first, but as scientific and commercial explorations expanded, more and more evidence of mass extinctions was uncovered. The closing millennia of the last ice age, for instance, saw an enormous mortality of animals in many parts of the world. Some estimated that as many as 40,000,000 animals died in North America alone, including mammoths, mastodons, giant beaver, saber tooth cats, giant sloths, woolly rhinoceroses, camels and horses. Eventually the physical evidence became so extensive that the bulwark of denial began to weaken. But Nature hates a void, so, as in all cases where denial is forced to give way to an anomaly, new theories evolve. So it was that pure natural selection yielded to accept a mild sort of natural intervention which some scientists suggested may have been brought on by such things as mountain building, or the ice ages, or volcanic dusts, citing its adverse influence on solar radiation, or, as in the case of the dinosaurs, an asteroidal impact. None of these explanations have really caught on, however, because the lack of supporting evidence has simply blocked any serious consideration.
But that’s not to say that the biologist’s concerns need to go unanswered. Because in 1958, Charles Hapgood, who we’ll meet in just a minute, advanced a theory suggesting that crustal displacements, brought about by centrifugal influences acting on the polar icecaps, have not only been a regular part of earth’s history, but that their catastrophic consequence are the direct cause of not only abrupt biological change, but virtually all significant geological change as well. If you are not familiar with Hapgood, than let me say that you are in for a refreshing treat. Because, like no other author in recent history, he is quoted by nearly everyone who writes on this subject. In fact the whole of Part 1, of the best selling Fingerprints of the Gods, by Graham Hancock (Crown 1995), is devoted to Hapgood. Let’s see why! The most fundamental law in all of nature, without compromise, is that forces, and only forces, can produce motion. Nothing else works. Not energy, not momentum, nothing! So when the wind blows, or the Himalayan mountains rise, or lightning streaks across the sky and the thunder torments our ears, a force has caused it. It is fundamental, and it’s in every physics book that ever was. But we don’t have to go there to find it, because the most celebrated patron of this principle, author, professor, visionary, Charles Hapgood, whose classic works, Earth’s Shifting Crust, set it out on the table in ledger form for all of us to read!
The prospect that unfolds before us, as we contemplate the possibility that total displacements of the earth’s crust have been a feature of geological history since the formation of the crust itself, is nothing less than the discovery of the formative force, the shaping factor, that has been responsible not only for ice ages, not only for the mountain ranges, but possibly for the very history of the continents and for all the principle features of the face of the earth.
Without ambiguity, Hapgood used the term “formative force” in his search for that shaping factor that brought about the ice ages. He wasn’t looking for weather patterns, or climatic changes, he was looking for a force; and he found it in the centrifugal influences that act directly upon the Polar ice masses to drive them toward the equator in a crashing search for equilibrium. Einstein agreed…
In a polar region there is continual deposition of ice which is not symmetrically distributed about the pole. The earth’s rotation acts on these unsymmetrically deposited masses, and produces centrifugal momentum that is transmitted to the rigid crust of the earth to bring about a displacement over the viscous inner layers and moves the polar regions toward the equator….and in uncommon fashion, Einstein paid Hapgood the sincerest of compliments!
“I frequently receive communications from people who wish to consult me concerning their unpublished ideas. It goes without saying that these ideas are seldom possessed of scientific validity. The very first communication, however, that I received from Mr. Hapgood electrified me. His idea is original, of great simplicity, and-if it continues to prove itself-of great
importance to everything that is related to the history of the earth’s surface.”
Einstein, in endorsing Hapgood’s work, however, did so with some lingering concerns. “Without a doubt the earth’s crust is strong enough not to give way proportionately as the ice is deposited. The only doubtful assumption is that the earth’s crust can be moved easily enough over the inner layers.”
This concern, regarding the crust’s ability to move easily, (which carries with it the implied assumption that the crust could break away in the first place), was offered as a reminder that the earth does not possess any secret procedures for violating Nature’s Laws. In the simplest way possible Einstein was suggesting that the process, or processes, that break the crust’s ties to the earth and fashions the viscous inner surfaces was in need of discovery before the theory could be fully endorsed. His reminder was subtle, but it had hard implications, i.e., there was a lot more work to be done. Einstein
then closed his words with this “observation:”
If the earth’s crust is really so easily displaced over its substratum as this theory requires, then the rigid masses near the earth’s surface must be distributed in such a way that they give rise to no other considerable centrifugal momentum. (Note: Centrifugal momentum is a generic reference to a mass that has achieved velocity from the influence of centrifugal
Hapgood realized the impact of Einstein’s words. The inference was obvious. If there was no indigenous process to break the crust’s ties to the earth and form the viscous inner layers, the crust was not going to move. Hapgood expressed it this way!
It is necessary to investigate any existing distortions within the crust itself and to learn whether it may contain any uncompensated masses of a magnitude comparable to the Antarctic icecap, and thus capable of causing comparable centrifugal effects, For the inference is obvious: if such masses are in existence, but have not moved the crust, it follows that the crust may be anchored too solidly to be moved by the centrifugal effect of icecaps.
There was clearly an unsolved problem here, but we have to change from the past tense to the present to see how it was resolved. My degree and lifelong experience is in engineering, so when I read Hapgood’s book I was intrigued by how he applied simple everyday engineering mechanics to solve questions of evolution and the ice ages. It was masterful. But he was severely criticized for his efforts and you have to admire his forbearance. For instance, one rather arrogant charge, which was made in a letter that Hapgood (in classic manner) included as an Appendix item, flatly stated: “(You) have no authority to express a more definitive opinion. It is clear that the only opinions which matter are those
which are the results of independent studies by competent specialists.” (Now if that don’t beat all!) So, perhaps in awe, or perhaps for what Edward Bacon calls “a desire for romance,” I vowed (in 1960) to work out some of the wrinkles that concerned Einstein. In 1998, I published my efforts in a book entitled The Gods, Gemini, and the Great Pyramid, with Beth Hapgood, Charles Hapgood’s cousin, maintaining a watchful eye for new material sources and perspectives while she challenged me endlessly to maintain an awareness of the problems of language. …
Keep in mind, she would say, that everyone has ideas of their own and you want to be sure to include even the most skeptical…so don’t try to tell them how things are…just give them something to think about.
Beth and I met by chance; she lives in Massachusetts and I live in Michigan, she’s a student of the Art of Expression, and I’m an engineer, (…talk about challenging complicities), but we’ve been exchanging phone calls, letters, and visits for years now and have worked some very long hours together, (although she refers to some of our discussions as having been in the ring together). The book that finally emerged is about many things as my wife Patty will tell you, because she listened to endless hours of talk about shifting crusts and ancient Nascan figures, about Egyptian Hieroglyphics, and telepathic communication, about earthquakes, and isostasy, and ancient coral. And finally about the secret process itself. We call it Rotational-Bending, or more memorably, the RB-Effect. We can describe it in this manner. (Ref. The Gods…,page 1 ) We rotate, tilted at an angle of 23′ 27″ while the moon, pulling relentlessly at us, circles the earth. With no change in time we orbit the sun and again we experience the relentless pull of gravity. The combined gravitational effects from the sun and the moon, and to a lesser extent that of the planets, pull at the crust from this oblique angle, relentlessly wearing the crust down until it is wrested from its moorings and fails from fatigue. We’re being torn apart. It is from the RB-Effect that a weakening bond in a zone just below the crust called the “plastic zone” forms and allows the crust to
separate from the inner mantle. Once the inner ties between the crust and the inner mantle are broken, centrifugal forces acting on the great masses of ice at the poles move the crust toward the equator.
Rotational-Bending is the physical process imposed on an object, in this case the earth, by the combination of the effects of a force which causes the object to bend while it is simultaneously in rotational motion. Systems fail from the RB-Effect because the internal stresses induced by the bending are being chased around by the rotation. From tension to compression and back again in a destructive fatiguing manner. Time is the controlling factor here because the earth rotates on its axis 24 hours a day, year after year, millennium after millennium, endlessly – and where such endlessly cycling exists, failure from fatigue is both certain and unexpected.
Rotational-Bending, or the RB-Effect, stresses the crust from the gravitational plane of the ecliptic, the equator having absolutely nothing to do with it except to rotate, as illustrated in Figure 1. The resultant stress pattern looks like that illustrated in Figure 2. The RB-Effect squeezes the crust like an orange and (in this secret process) it breaks down the inner fibers that tie the crust, and through heat and time, it creates a viscous layer for the crust to move across. Charles Hapgood died in 1983, so he never knew of the discovery, but I think he’d have been pleased that the wrinkles had been ironed out.
The story of crustal displacements goes far beyond centrifugal momentums and the RB-Effect, however. Because after having said all there is to say about them, it is time to link their efforts to the successful displacement of the crust. So the proofs are gathered and the links are made; and we tell you the story in The Gods, Gemini, and the Great Pyramid.
Hapgood found the links that he needed in the ancient geological and fossil records. We found them in ancient cultural records that connected Nasca, Peru with the pyramid sites in Egypt. It is our belief that these Peruvian figures are an ancient Bible, and the parent text, which they serve to illustrate, are half a world apart, but can be read from the walls of the pyramids from the Fifth & Sixth Dynasty of ancient Egypt. They are, of course, R. O. Faulkner’s, Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts.
These two ancient chronicles take us back to a time when the North Geographic Pole was in Alaska, Egypt and Peru were both on the equator, and the Sphinx, for the only time in its aged history, faced due east. Since then, both Alaska and Hudson Bay have been jostled around by a shifting crust that moves in a bobbing motion that is locked into existence by the mass of Antarctica. With the Arctic at the Northern Pole as our starting reference, each shift moved the crust 30 degrees, moving it from the Arctic to Alaska and back again, then to Hudson Bay and back again, in a bobbing, sometimes hesitant series of movements that took thousands of years in its administration.
Now whether this hesitancy explains interstitial periods of glaciation in any satisfactory manner, is hard to say, but it beats all other explanations that I have ever read, or heard tell of!
Dr. Fred N. Earll wrote the foreword to Charles H. Hapgood’s book, The Path of the Pole ( 1970). Fred, now retired, was a Geology Professor at Montana Tech of the Univ. of Montana.
James G. Bowles is a graduate of Michigan State University, and the author of The Gods, Gemini, and the Great Pyramid (1998).