After glancing over the Iberian peoples, we are now going across the seas to reach the shores of Latin America. Originally, the Atlanteans were the transmitters of knowledge to many peoples. One can dare say that the great civilizations that populated the Americas, Europe, Africa and even India benefited from the Atlantean culture before it degenerated, as pointed out by Plato in “Timæus”.
When the Conquistadors came to Latin America, they poured torrents of blood and destroyed priceless documents about the history of mankind. Fortunately, there were Codices that escaped that destruction, and for the Maya civilization we count only three. These codices, incorrectly decrypted, do not allow us to say much about a disaster. On the other hand, the Mayan calendar is extraordinary and surprising in its precision. It is not possible here to expand on this subject. However, an important date is mentioned in this calendar and it corresponds with the fall of Atlantis. In addition to the only three codices that have reached us from that tradition there is the sacred book of the Mayas of Guatemala: the Popol Vuh.
That very complete book gives many details about the origin of Mankind and the character of a disaster which is undoubtedly the one that destroyed Atlantis. It is said that they heard noise of flames in the celestial heights, that the earth was shaken, objects revolted against men, and that rain water and tar fell upon the Earth, trees swayed, homes crumbled, caves collapsed and the day became dark. Here we find the same description made by other authors and other traditions around the world. The Chilam Balam of the Yucatán claims that in a very remote time, the motherland of the Maya was engulfed by the sea, which was accompanied by earthquakes and terrible eruptions.
We cannot ignore the importance the Aztec priests gave to the countries of the East, hence the existence of Quetzalcoalt, the plumed serpent, bearer of civilization. The Incas believed in Viracocha, a god who came to them directly from the East. In his book, “Atlantis: From Legend to Discovery”, Andrew Tomas says:
The Olmecs, predecessors of the Aztecs, could have been subjects of the Atlantean empire. When the archaeologists had difficulties in establishing the age of the pyramid of Cuicuilco, on the outskirts of Mexico City, they appealed to geologists since half of the structure was covered with solid lava. Two volcanoes stood nearby and one would naturally ask the question: “When did the eruption occur?”
Just like the pyramids, sphinxes were found in the Yucatan. They are reproduced in Mayan style. Many Atlantologists are of the opinion that the emblem of the cross came from Atlantis since it was venerated in all its presumed colonies.
According to Flavius Josephus, the Jewish historian of the first century, Nimrod would have built the Tower of Babel as a refuge in case of a second Deluge. The Mexican chronicler Ixtlilxochitl gives us a similar argument that would have led the Toltecs to build pyramids.
This people lived in Mexico. We do not know much about them, except for some texts that have reached us, such as that of Ixtlilxochitl. He said:
When men multiplied, they built a very high zacuali (which is today a very tall tower) so that they could seek refuge in case the second world was destroyed… But the gods were offended by this pride and cast a fire from the sky upon the tower, and workers perished in large numbers. This is why the pyramid of Cholula was not completed.
Here is thus expressed through the various texts that we have seen the constant in all Western and American traditions. This, of course, is seen in a broad synopsis, but it is no less true that other civilizations speak of the same. The Toltecs (amongst others) give the same details on the fall of Atlantis and what in the West we call the Tower of Babel. The similarity is striking!
Throughout this study, it would appear that only the great civilizations of the past had kept a memory of Atlantis. This is false and many ethnologists have found tribes living around the world that report the same facts with different terms. We cannot cite all of them, but we know for example that the Indians settled on the banks of the inner course of the Mackenzie River in Canada claim that a wave of unbearable heat poured over their Arctic countries during the Flood and that suddenly a freezing cold followed that heat. In all respects this ties with the latest scientific discoveries about the sudden atmospheric change that occurred on our planet about 11,000 years ago.
When speaking of North America, it is good to talk of the oral tradition of the Algonquins who lived entirely in the area of the westerly winds. They say that their God and hero Minabozho fell into the sea which overflew and submerged the lands. There seems to be here the suggestion of a celestial body falling into the heart of the present Atlantic Ocean. The Arawaks in Guyana, the North of Brazil and Colombia, have the same “legend”. Their good God Sigoo would have saved humanity from the Flood. All these traditions tally in the North as in the South, in the East as in the West. To conclude on this aspect of the ancient traditions on Atlantis, it is also useful to present some facts retracing the history of Asia. The Mahabaratha of India recounts how Brahma appeared in the form of a fish before Manu, the father of the human race, to save him from the Flood.
In his “History of China” Martinus Martini, a Jesuit missionary who worked in China in the 17th century, speaks of very old Chronicles evoking a time where the sky suddenly began to decline towards the North. The planets, the Sun and the Moon changed their course after an upheaval on planet Earth. This is an indication of a wobbling of the Earth which would explain the astronomical phenomena described in Chinese records. That would concur with the current conclusions of Science that say that the Earth moved its magnetic and geographic pole about 11,000 years ago. This was a quick overview of what the archives of humanity have unveiled.
It is always interesting to compare the traditions and consider the problems from a new angle. Our world has not yet lost all of its memory. The relics of the distant past are still present and only a comparative study will allows us to take stock and prove that men have a common history; that they have no differences than those they have bestowed upon themselves, and therefore there is an unbreakable bond amongst all: the brotherhood beyond all social and material contingencies.
After this jump, this escape in time, and armed with this knowledge of the great Atlantean disaster as viewed by the ancients, we now return a little closer to home to quickly examine the ideas put forth by some researchers of the past centuries who toiled to demonstrate that Atlantis was a reality. These men obviously lacked the elements of information that we have today, but we will see that in spite of that their deductions were logical and useful for our current scientific research. We would be tempted to say, almost like in a fairytale: “the centuries passed, and the people lived in ignorance.”
It is rather like this that one should see things with regard to Atlantis. Evidently, researchers at the beginning of the Christian era became interested in the lost continent, but no rigorous study was initiated to prove anything. Besides, the time did not lend itself to that, and only those who could carry out investigations in this domain were secretly educated in the wisdom schools. As a curiosity, we will now present the history of the recent past when these men undertook research that often aborted. Those were men who, compared to the time elapsed since the disappearance of Atlantis, are not so distant from us. Strange theses were sometimes supported. In 1533 the Spaniard Gomora claimed that Atlantis was none other than America. This certainly stemmed from the fact that the discovery of the new world ignited many imaginations. A more serious research was conducted in 1665 by Jesuit Fr. Athanase Kircher who saw in the Azores the highest peaks of sunken Atlantis. This hypothesis is taken up today by some explorers.
Pallas, meanwhile, in keeping with the scholarly research he undertook, asserted that the plains of Russia once formed an ocean. Also, one can find bones of elephants, Buffalos, rhinos, as well as monstrous human bones around Syfran, on the Volga. With this he sought to demonstrate that a gigantic cataclysm took place on our planet thousands of years ago. Another researcher emeritus, Ignatius Donnelly, in his book “Atlantis, the antediluvian world”, gave an enthusiastic exposé of his discoveries on the lost continent. His arguments today appear slim. However, we must pay homage to this atlantologist due to the limited means then available to produce better results. The Swede Rudbeck, published four volumes to support that Atlantis was in the Scandinavian Peninsula. These four volumes served as introduction to a yet more important work. As by a twist of fate the manuscript disappeared in the Uppsala fire in 1709. Needless to say the author died of grief almost immediately.
The French naturalist and writer Buffon (1707-1788) did a comparative research on geophysics in his “Natural History”, and then in “The epochs of Nature”. Delisles de Salles would search for Atlantis in the Caucasus based on the information provided in the Bible. To the German Bock Atlantis was to be found in South Africa. This man labored all his life to try to prove his thesis.
In 1779, Bailly, the future mayor of Paris during the Revolution, located Atlantis in Spitsbergen. He was forced to interrupt his research because of his political commitments. The years passed, and forty years later two men, Latreille and Bartoldi, claimed to have located Atlantis in Greece! In 1855 Jacob Kruger revived the American theory and here was Atlantis back on dry land and no longer a sunken continent. And there were still other personalities such as of Saint-Yves D’alveydre (portrait), Richard Simon, Fabre d’ Olivet (in his “ Histoire philosophique du genre humain” ) and even Chateaubriand who picked up the torch and brought out very important information on the subject.
At the end of the 19th century researchers began to mobilize and they made known what they had discovered. Subsequently, the first real works undertaken about what the ancients called “the Island of Poseidonis” began to bubble in the scientific community. The arguments thus became more and more precise, but still incomplete. In 1874, Berlioux, in his book on the Atlanteans said:
Atlantis should be located in North Africa. An earthquake would have submerged the foot of the Atlas and the legend, having reached Solon, would have made of this earthquake the cataclysm that destroyed Atlantis.
This hypothesis, for the least enticing, was taken over in 1893 by a German named Knötel. Later, two other Germans, Borchardt and Hermann, argued that it was in Tunisia, in the region of Chott, that one had to find Atlantis.
The list could even be longer, and if the readers are particularly interested in the authors of the past they can procure an important book from Editions Payot: “Atlantis” by Alexandre Bessmertny. That book brings together, and with a luxury of details, the works of these various researchers who pioneered the Atlantology. You might notice that the ideas expressed were sometimes far-fetched and sometimes absurd or incoherent. Today, our technology and our scientific knowledge open a new horizon for research. It must be said that the scientists and the armies of the Super powers know where they stand on Atlantis, due to very secret missions that have been sent from both sides to explore the depths of the Atlantic Ocean. But we are not there yet.
In the next installment we will see how Atlantis has once again become a reality for the modern world, with very specific studies being undertaken by renowned scientists since the beginning of the last century. It is however necessary to open a parenthesis: It was that stubbornness of the researchers of the past that enables us today to draw closer to this reality. It was their mistakes, their missteps, which led us to reconstitute this land at the heart of the Atlantic Ocean. And the research has only just begun.Guillaume Delaage