Theosophical University Press Online Edition
[[This page continued from previous section]]
Cyclopean Ruins and Colossal Stones as Witnesses to Giants.
In his enormous works — Memoires addressees a l’Academie des Sciences — de Mirville, carrying out the task of proving the reality of the devil and showing his abode in every ancient and modern idol, has collected several hundred pages of “historical evidence” that in the days of miracle — Pagan and Biblical — the stones walked, spoke, delivered oracles, and even sung. That finally, “Christ-stone,” or Christ-Rock, “the spiritual Rock” that followed “Israel” (1 Corinth. x. 4) “became a Jupiter lapis,” swallowed by his father Saturn, “under the shape of a stone.”* We will not stop to discuss the evident misuse and materialization of Biblical metaphors, simply for the sake of proving the Satanism of idols, though a good deal might be said† on this subject. But without claiming any such peripateticism and innate psychic faculties for our stones, we may collect, in our turn, every available evidence on hand, to show that (a) had there been no giants to move about such colossal rocks, there could never have been a Stonehenge, a Carnac (Brittany) and other such Cyclopean structures; and (b) were there no such thing as magic, there could never have been so many witnesses to oracular and speaking stones.
In the Achaica (p. 81) we find Pausanias confessing that, in beginning his work, he had regarded the Greeks as mighty stupid “for worshipping stones.” But, having reached Arcadia, he adds: “I have changed my way of thinking.” Therefore, without worshipping stones or stone idols and statues, which is the same — a crime Roman Catholics are unwise to reproach Pagans with, as they do likewise — one may be allowed to believe in what so many great philosophers and holy men have believed in, without deserving to be called an “idiot” by modern Pausaniases.
The reader is referred to Volume VI. of the Academie des Inscriptions (Memoires, p. 518, et seq.) if he would study the various properties of flints and pebbles from the standpoint of Magic and psychic powers. In a poem on Stones attributed to Orpheus, those stones are divided into ophites and siderites, “serpent-stones” and “star-stones.” “The ‘Ophite’
* Pierres Animees et parlantes., p. 283. Theologie de la Pierre, 270.
† Saturn is Kronos — “Time.” His swallowing Jupiter lapis may turn out one day a prophecy. “Peter (Cephas, lapis), is the stone on which the Church of Rome is built” we are assured. But Kronos is as sure “to swallow it” one day, as he has swallowed Jupiter-lapis and still greater characters.
is shaggy, hard, heavy, black, and has the gift of speech; when one prepares to cast it away, it produces a sound similar to the cry of a child. It is by means of this stone that Helanos foretold the ruin of Troy, his fatherland . . ” etc. (Falconnet.)
Sanchoniathon and Philo Byblios, in referring to these betyles, call them “Animated Stones.” Photius repeats what Damascius, Asclepiades, Isidorus and the physician Eusebius had asserted before him. The latter (Eusebius) never parted with his ophites, which he carried in his bosom, and received oracles from them, delivered in a small voice resembling a low whistling.* Arnobius (a holy man who, “from a Pagan had become one of the lights of the Church,” Christians tell their readers) confesses he could never meet on his passage with one of such stones without putting it questions, “which is answered occasionally in a clear and sharp small voice.” Where is the difference between the Christian and the Pagan ophites, we ask?
It is also known that the famous stone at Westminster was called liafail — “the speaking stone,” — which raised its voice only to name the king that had to be chosen. Cambry (Monuments Celtiques) says he saw it when it still bore the inscription: —†
“Ni fallat fatum, Scoti quocumque locatum
Invenient lapidem, regnasse tenentur ibidem.”
Finally, Suidas speaks of a certain Heraclius, who could distinguish at a glance the inanimate stones from those which were endowed with motion; and Pliny mentions stones which “ran away when a hand approached them.” (See Dictionnaire des Religions par l’abbe Bertrand; art. on words Heraclius and Betyles.)
De Mirville — who seeks to justify the Bible — inquires very pertinently, why the monstrous stones of Stonehenge were called in days of old chior-gaur (from Cor, “dance,” whence chorea, and gaur, a giant), or the dance of giants? And then he sends the reader to receive his reply from the Bishop of St. Gildas. But the authors of the Voyage dans le Comte
* The same, of course, as the “small voice” heard by Elijah after the earthquake at the mouth of the cave. (1 Kings xix. 12.)
† The rocking, or Logan, stones bear various names. The Celts had their clacha-brath, the “Destiny or judgment-stone”; the divining-stone, or “stone of the ordeal” and the oracle stone; the moving or animated stone of the Phoenicians; the rumbling stone of the Irish. Brittany has its “pierres branlantes” at Huelgoat. They are found in the Old and the New Worlds: in the British Islands, France, Spain, Italy, Russia, Germany, etc., as in North America. (See Hodson’s “Letters from North America,” Vol. II., p. 440.) Pliny speaks of several in Asia (Hist. Nat. Lib. I., c. 96); and Apollonius Rhodius expatiates on the rocking stones, and says that they are “stones placed on the apex of a tumulus, and so sensitive as to be movable by the mind” (Ackerman’s Arth. Index, p. 34), referring no doubt to the ancient priests who moved such stones by will-power and from a distance.
de Cornouailles, sur les traces des geants, and of various learned works on the ruins of Stonehenge,* Carnac and West Hoadley, give far better and more reliable information upon this particular subject. In those regions — true forests of rocks — immense monoliths are found, “some weighing over 500,000 kilograms” (Cambry). These “hinging stones” of Salisbury Plain are believed to be the remains of a Druidical temple. But the Druids were historical men and not Cyclopes, nor giants. Who then, if not giants, could ever raise such masses (especially those at Carnac and West Hoadley), range them in such symmetrical order that they should represent the planisphere, and place them in such wonderful equipoise that they seem to hardly touch the ground, are set in motion at the slightest touch of the finger, and would yet resist the efforts of twenty men who should attempt to displace them.
We say, that most of these stones are the relics of the last Atlanteans. We shall be answered that all the geologists claim them to be of a natural origin. That, a rock when “weathering,” i.e., losing flake after flake of its substance under influence of weather, assumes this form. That, the “tors” in West England exhibit curious forms, also produced by this cause. That, finally, as all scientists consider the “rocking stones to be of purely natural origin, wind, rain, etc., causing disintegration of rocks in layers” — our statement will be justly denied, especially as “we see this process of rock-modification in progress around us to-day.” Let us examine the case.
But read what Geology has to say, and you will learn that often these gigantic masses do not even belong to the countries wherein they are now fixed; that their geological congeners often pertain to strata unknown in those regions and to be found only far beyond the seas. Mr. William Tooke (French trans., Sepulture des Tartares. Arch. VII., p. 222), speculating upon the enormous blocks of granite which are strewn over Southern Russia and Siberia, tells the reader that there, where they now rest, there are neither rocks nor mountains; and that they must have been brought over “from immense distances and with prodigious efforts.” Charton (Voyageurs Anciens et Modernes, Vol. I., p. 230) speaks of a specimen of such rock “from Ireland,” which had been submitted to the analysis of an eminent English geologist, who assigned to it a foreign origin, “most probably African.”
This is a strange coincidence, as Irish tradition attributes the origin of her circular stones to a Sorcerer who brought them from Africa. De Mirville sees in that sorcerer “an accursed Hamite.” We see in him a
* See, among others, “History of Paganism in Caledonia,” by Dr. Th. A. Wise, F.R.A.S., etc.
† Ham was no more a Titan or Giant than Shem and Japhet. They are either all Arkite Titans, as Faber shows them, or myths.
dark Atlantean, or perhaps even some earlier Lemurian, who had survived till the birth of the British Islands — Giants in every and any case.*
“Men,” says Cambry, naively, “have nothing to do with it . . . for never could human power and industry undertake anything of this kind. Nature alone has accomplished it all (!!) and Science will demonstrate it some day” (!!) (p. 88). Nevertheless, it is a human, though gigantic power, which has accomplished it, and no more “nature” alone than god or devil.
“Science,” having undertaken to demonstrate that even the mind and Spirit of man are simply the production of blind forces, is quite capable of accepting the task. It may come out some fine morning, and seek to prove that nature alone has marshalled the gigantic rocks of Stonehenge, traced their position with mathematical precision, given them the form of the Dendera planisphere and of the signs of the Zodiac, and brought stones weighing over one million of pounds flying from Africa and Asia to England and Ireland!
It is true that Cambry recanted later on. “I had believed for a long time,” he says, “that Nature alone could produce those wonders . . . . but I recant . . . . chance is unable to create such marvellous combinations . . . . and those who placed the said rocks in equipoise, are the same who have raised the moving masses of the pond of Huelgoat, near Concarneau. . . . .” Dr. John Watson, quoted by the same author “Antiquites Celtiques,” p. 99, says, when speaking of the moving rocks, or Rocking-Stones situated on the slope of Golcar (the “Enchanter”): “The astonishing movement of those masses poised in equilibrium made the Celts compare them to gods.” . . . .
In “Stonehenge” (Flinders Petrie) it is said that “Stonehenge is built of the stone of the district, a red sandstone, or ‘sarsen’ stone, locally called ‘grey wethers.’ But some of the stones, especially those which are said to have been devoted to astronomical purposes, have been brought from a distance, probably the North of Ireland.”
To close, the reflections of a man of Science, in an article upon the subject published in 1850 in the Revue Archeologique (p. 473), are worthy of being quoted. Says the paper, concerning the rocking stones: —
“Every stone is a block whose weight would try the most powerful machines. There are, in a word, scattered throughout the globe, masses, before which the word materials seems to remain inexplicable, at the sight of which imagination is confounded, and that had to be endowed with a name as colossal as the
* Diodorus Siculus asserts that in the days of Isis, all men were of a vast stature, who were denominated by the Hellenes Giants. “[[Oi d’en Aiguptoi muthologousi kata ten Isidos helikian gegonenai tinas polusomatous]].”
things themselves. Besides which, these immense rocking stones, called sometimes routers — placed upright on one of their sides as on a point, their equipoise being so perfect that the slightest touch is sufficient to set them in motion . . . betray a most positive knowledge of statics. Reciprocal counter-motion, surfaces, plane, convex and concave, in turn . . . all this allies them to Cyclopean monuments, of which it can be said with good reason, repeating after de La Vega that ‘the demons seem to have worked on them more than men.’ ”*
For once we agree with our friends and foes, the Roman Catholics, and ask whether such prodigies of statics and equilibrium, applied to masses weighing millions of pounds, can be the work of Palaeolithic savages, of cave-men, taller than the average man in our century, yet ordinary mortals as we are? It is no use for our purpose to refer to the various traditions attached to the rocking-stones. Still, it may be as well to remind the English reader of Giraldus Cambrensis, who speaks of such a stone on the Isle of Mona, which returned to its place, every effort made to keep it elsewhere notwithstanding. At the time of the conquest of Ireland by Henry II., a Count Hugo Cestrensis, desiring to convince himself of the reality of the fact, tied the Mona stone to a far bigger one and had them thrown into the sea. On the following morning it was found in its accustomed place. . . The learned William of Salisbury warrants the fact by testifying to its presence in the wall of a church where he had seen it in 1554. . . And this reminds one of what Pliny said of the stone left by the Argonauts at Cyzicum, which the Cyzicans had placed in the Prytanea “whence it ran away several times, which forced them to lead it” (Nat. Hist., XXXVI., p. 592) . . . Here we have immense stones stated by all antiquity to be “living, moving, speaking and self-perambulating.” They were also capable, it seems, of making people run away, since they have been called routers (“to put to flight,” to rout) and Des Mousseaux shows them all to be prophetic stones and
* “It is difficult,” writes Creuzer, “not to suspect in the structures of Tiryns and Mycenae planetary forces supposed to be moved by celestial powers, analogous to the famous Dactyles.” (Pelasges et Cyclopes). To this day Science is ignorant on the subject of the Cyclopes. They are supposed to have built all the so-called “Cyclopean” works whose erection necessitated several regiments of Giants, and — they were only seventy-seven in all (about one hundred, Creuzer thinks). They are called “Builders,” and Occultism calls them the initiators, who, initiating some Pelasgians, thus laid the foundation stone of true masonry. Herodotus associates the Cyclops with Perseus “the son of an Assyrian demon” (I. VI. p. 54). Raoul Rochette found that Palaemonius, the Cyclops, to whom a sanctuary was raised, “was the Tyrian Hercules.” Anyhow, he was the builder of the sacred columns of Gadir, covered with mysterious characters to which Apollonius of Tyana was the only one in his age to possess the key; and with figures which may still be found on the walls of Ellora, the gigantic ruins of the temple of Viswakarma, “the builder and artificer of the Gods.”
called mad stones (see his, “Dieu et les Dieux” p. 587). “The rocking-stone is accepted in Science. Why did it rock, why was it made to do so? One must be blind not to see that this motion was one more means of divination, and that they were called for this very reason ‘the stones of truth.’ ” (de Mirville, “Fetichisme”)*
This is history, the Past of prehistoric times, warranting the same in later ages. The Dracontia, sacred to the moon and the serpent, were the more ancient “Rocks of Destiny” of older nations, whose motion, or rocking, was a code perfectly clear to the initiated priests, who alone had the key to this ancient reading. Vormius and Olaus Magnus show that it was according to the orders of the oracle, “whose voice spoke through the immense rocks raised by the colossal powers of ancient giants,” that the kings of Scandinavia were elected. “In India and Persia,” says Pliny, “it is she (the Persian Oitzoe) whom the magi had to consult for the election of their sovereigns” (Nat. Hist., lxxxvii., chap. LIV.); and he describes (in chap. XXXVIII., l. ii.) a rock overshadowing Harpasa, in Asia, and placed in such a manner that “a single finger
* Messrs. Richardson and Barth are said to have been amazed at finding in the Desert of Sahara the same trilithic and raised stones they had seen in Asia, Circassia, Etruria, and in all the North of Europe. Mr. Rivett-Carnac, B.C.S., of Allahabad, the distinguished Archaeologist, shows the same amazement in finding the description given by Sir J. Simpson of the cuplike markings on stones and rocks in England, Scotland, and other Western countries — “offering an extraordinary resemblance” to “the marks on the trap Boulders which encircle the Barrows near Nagpur” (the city of Snakes). The eminent scholar saw in this “another and very extraordinary addition to the mass of evidence. . . that a branch of the nomadic tribes, who swept at an early date over Europe, penetrated into India also.” We say Lemuria, Atlantis and her giants, and the earliest races of the Fifth Root-Race had all a hand in these betyles, lithoi, and “magic” stones in general. The cup marks noticed by Sir J. Simpson, and the “holes scooped out on the face” of rocks and monuments found by Mr. Rivett-Carnac “of different sizes varying from six inches to an inch-and-a-half in diameter, and in depth from one to one-and-a-half inch . . . . . . generally arranged in perpendicular lines presenting many permutations in the number and size and arrangement of the cups” — are simply written records of the oldest races. Whosoever examines with attention the drawings made of such marks in the “Archaeological Notes on Ancient Sculpturing on Rocks in Kumaon, India, etc.,” will find in it the most primitive style of marking or recording; something of the sort having been adopted by the American inventors of the Morse code of telegraphic writing, which reminds us of the Ahgam writing, a combination of long and short strokes, as Mr. Rivett-Carnac describes it “cut on sandstone.” Sweden, Norway, and Scandinavia are full of such written records, the Runic characters having followed the cup-marks and long and short strokes. In “Johannes Magnus’ Infolio” one sees the representation of the demi-god, the giant Starchaterus (Starkad, the pupil of Kroszharsgrani, the Magician) who holds under each arm a huge stone covered with Runic characters; and Starkad, according to Scandinavian legend, went to Ireland and performed marvellous deeds in the North and South, East and West. (See “Asgard and the Gods.”)
can move it, while the weight of the whole body makes it resist.” Why then should not the rocking stones of Ireland, or those of Brinham, in Yorkshire, have served for the same mode of divination or oracular communications? The hugest of them are evidently the relics of the Atlanteans; the smaller ones, such as Brinham Rocks, with some revolving stones on their summit, are copies from the more ancient lithoi. Had not the bishops of the middle ages destroyed all the plans of the Dracontia they could lay their hands on, Science would know more of these.* As it is, we know that they were universally used during long prehistoric ages, and all for the same purposes of prophecy and magic. E. Biot, a member of the Institute of France, published in his Antiquites de France, Vol. ix., an article showing the Chatam peramba (the Field of Death, or ancient burial ground in Malabar), to be identical with the old tombs at Carnac — “a prominence and a central tomb.”. . . “Bones are found in them (the tombs),” he says, “and Mr. Hillwell tells us that some of these are enormous, the natives (of Malabar) calling the tombs the dwellings of Rakshasas (giants).” Several stone circles, “considered the work of the Panch Pandava (five Pandus), as all such monuments are in India, so numerous in that country,” when opened by the direction of Rajah Vasariddi, “were found to contain human bones of a very large size.” (T. A. Wise, in “History of Paganism in Caledonia,” p. 36).
Again, de Mirville is right in his generalization, if not in his conclusions. As the long cherished theory that the Dracontia are mostly witnesses to “great natural geological commotions” (Charlton), and “are the work of Nature” (Cambry) is now exploded, his remarks are very just. “Before the impossibility of such a theory is asserted, we advise Science to reflect . . . . and, above all, no longer to class Titans and Giants among primitive legends: for their works are there, under our eyes, and those rocking stones will oscillate on their basis to the end of the world to help them to see clearer and realise once for all, that one is not altogether a candidate for Charenton for believing in wonders certified to by the whole of Antiquity” (“Fetichisme,” p. 288).
It is just what we can never repeat too often, though the voices of both Occultists and Roman Catholics are raised in the desert. Nevertheless, no one can fail to see that Science is as inconsistent, to say the least, in its modern speculations, as was ancient and mediaeval theology in its interpretations of the so-called Revelation. Science would have men descend from the pithecoid ape — a transformation requiring millions of years — and yet fears to make mankind older than 100,000 years! Science teaches the gradual transformation of species,
* Charton, the Author of “Voyageurs anciens et modernes,” quoted by De Mirville.
natural selection and evolution from the lowest form to the highest; from mollusc to fish, from reptile to bird and mammalian. Yet it refuses to man, who physiologically is only a higher mammal and animal, such transformation of his external form. But if the monstrous iguanodon of the Wealden may have been the ancestor of the diminutive iguana of to-day, why could not the monstrous man of the Secret Doctrine have become the modern man — the link between Animal and Angel? Is there anything more unscientific in this “theory,” than in that of refusing to man any spiritual immortal Ego, making of him an automaton, and ranking him, at the same time, as a distinct genus in the system of Nature? Occult Sciences may be less scientific than the present exact Sciences, they are withal more logical and consistent in their teachings. Physical forces, and natural affinities of atoms may be sufficient as factors to transform a plant into an animal; but it requires more than a mere interplay between certain material aggregates and their environment, to call to life a fully conscious man; even though he were no more indeed than a ramification between two “poor cousins” of the Quadrumanous order. Occult Sciences admit with Haeckel that (objective) life on our globe “is a logical postulate of Scientific natural history,” but add that the rejection of a like Spiritual involution, from within without, of invisible subjective Spirit-life — eternal and a Principle in Nature — is more illogical, if possible, than to say that the Universe and all in it has been gradually built by blind forces inherent in matter, without any external help.
Suppose an Occultist were to claim that the first grand organ of a cathedral had come originally into being in the following manner. First, there was a progressive and gradual elaboration in Space of an organizable material, which resulted in the production of a state of matter named organic protein. Then, under the influence of incident forces, those states having been thrown into a phase of unstable equilibrium, they slowly and majestically evolved into and resulted in new combinations of carved and polished wood, of brass pins and staples, of leather and ivory, wind-pipes and bellows. After which, having adapted all its parts into one harmonious and symmetrical machine, the organ suddenly pealed forth Mozart’s Requiem. This was followed by a Sonata of Beethoven, etc., ad infinitum; its keys playing of themselves and the wind blowing into the pipes by its own inherent force and fancy. . . . . What would Science say to such a theory? Yet, it is precisely in such wise that the materialistic savants tell us that the Universe was formed, with its millions of beings, and man, its spiritual crown.
Whatever may have been the real inner thought of Mr. Herbert Spencer, when writing on the subject of the gradual transformation of
species, what he says in it applies to our doctrine. “Construed in terms of evolution, every kind of being is conceived as a product of modifications wrought by insensible gradations on a pre-existing kind of being.” (“Essays on Physiology,” Subj. p. 144.) Then why, in this case, should not historical man be the product of a modification on a pre-existent and pre-historical kind of man, even supposing for argument’s sake that there is nothing within him to last longer than, or live independently of, his physical structure? But this is not so! For, when we are told that “organic matters are produced in the laboratory by what we may literally call artificial evolution” (Appendix to “Principles of Biology,” p. 482), we answer the distinguished English philosopher, that Alchemists and great adepts have done as much, and, indeed, far more, before the chemists ever attempted to “build out of dissociated elements complex combinations.” The Homunculi of Paracelsus are a fact in Alchemy, and will become one in Chemistry very likely, and then Mrs. Shelley’s Frankenstein will have to be regarded as a prophecy. But no chemist, or Alchemist either, will ever endow such a “Frankenstein’s Monster” with more than animal instinct, unless indeed he does that which the “Progenitors” are credited with, namely, if he leaves his own physical body, and incarnates in the “empty form.” But even this would be an artificial, not a natural man, for our “Progenitors” had, in the course of eternal evolution, to become gods before they became men.
The above digression, if one, is an attempt at justification before the few thinking men of the coming century who may read this. But this accounts also for the reason why the best and most spiritual men of our present day can no longer be satisfied with either Science or theology; and why they prefer any such “psychic craze” to the dogmatic assertions of both, neither of the two having anything better to offer than blind faith in their respective infallibility. Universal tradition is indeed the far safer guide in life. And universal tradition shows primitive man living for ages together with his Creators and first instructors — the Elohim — in the World’s “Garden of Eden,” or “Delight.” We shall treat of the Divine Instructors in Stanza XII.
45. The first great waters came. They swallowed the seven great islands (a).
46. All holy saved, the unholy destroyed. With them most of the huge animals produced from the sweat of the earth (b).
(a) As this subject — the fourth great deluge on our globe in this Round — is fully treated in the chapters that follow the last Stanza, to say anything more at present would be mere repetition. The seven great islands (Dwipas) belonged to the continent of Atlantis. The secret teachings show that the “Deluge” overtook the Fourth, giant Race, not on account of their depravity, or because they had become “black with sin,” but simply because such is the fate of every continent, which — like everything else under our Sun — is born, lives, becomes decrepit, and dies. This was when the Fifth Race was in its infancy.
(b) Thus the giants perished — the magicians and the sorcerers, adds the fancy of popular tradition, but “all holy saved,” and alone the “unholy were destroyed.” This was due, however, as much to the prevision of the “holy” ones, who had not lost the use of their “third eye,” as to Karma and natural law. Speaking of the subsequent race (our Fifth Humanity), the commentary says: —
“Alone the handful of those Elect, whose divine instructors had gone to inhabit that Sacred Island — ‘from whence the last Saviour will come’ — now kept mankind from becoming one-half the exterminator of the other [as mankind does now — H.P.B.]. It (mankind) became divided. Two-thirds of it were ruled by Dynasties of lower, material Spirits of the earth, who took possession of the easily accessible bodies; one-third remained faithful, and joined with the nascent Fifth Race — the divine Incarnates. When the Poles moved (for the fourth time) this did not affect those who were protected, and who had separated from the Fourth Race. Like the Lemurians — alone the ungodly Atlanteans perished, and ‘were seen no more.’. . . .”