Theosophical University Press Online Edition
When statements such as are comprised in the above heading are brought forward, the writer is, of course, expected to furnish historical instead of legendary evidence in support of such claims. Is this possible? Yes; for evidence of this nature is plentiful, and has simply to be collected and brought together to become overwhelming in the eyes of the unprejudiced.
Once the sagacious student gets hold of the guiding thread he may find it out for himself. We give facts and show land-marks: let the wayfarer follow them. What is given here is amply sufficient for this century.
In a letter to Voltaire, Bailly finds it quite natural that the sympathies of the “grand old invalid of Ferney” should be attracted to the “representatives of knowledge and wisdom, the Brahmans of India.” He then adds a curious statement. “But,” he says, “your Brahmans are very young in comparison with their ancient instructors.”*
Bailly, who knew nought of the esoteric teachings, nor of Lemuria, believed, nevertheless, unreservedly in the lost Atlantis, and also in several pre-historic and civilized nations which had disappeared without leaving any undeniable trace. He had studied the ancient classics and traditions extensively, and he saw that the arts and sciences known to those we now call the “ancients,” were “not the achievements of any of the now or even then existing nations, nor of any of the historical peoples of Asia.” And that, notwithstanding the learning of the Hindoos, their undeniable priority in the antiquity of their race had to be referred to a people or a race still more ancient and more learned than were even the Brahmans themselves.†
Voltaire, the greatest sceptic of his day, the materialist par excellence, shared Bailly’s belief. He thought it quite likely “that long before the empires of China and India, there had been nations cultured, learned, and powerful, which a deluge of barbarians overpowered and thus replunged into their primitive state of ignorance and savagery, or what they call the state of pure nature.” (“Lettres sur l’Atlantide, “ p. 15).‡
* Lettres sur l’Atlantide.
† Histoire de l’Astronomie Ancienne, p. 25, et seq.
‡ This conjecture is but a half-guess. There were such “deluges of barbarians” in the Fifth Race. With regard to the Fourth, it was a bona fide deluge of water which swept it away. Neither Voltaire nor Bailly, however, knew anything of the Secret Doctrine of the East.
That which with Voltaire was the shrewd conjecture of a great intellect, was with Bailly “a question of historical facts.” For “I make great case of ancient traditions preserved through a long series of generations,” he wrote. (Ibid.) It was possible, he thought, that a foreign nation should, after instructing another nation, so disappear that it should leave no traces behind. When asked how it could have happened that this ancient, or rather archaic, nation should not have left at least some recollection in the human mind, he answered that Time was a pitiless devourer of facts and events. But, the history of the Past was never entirely lost, for the Sages of old Egypt had preserved it, and “it is so preserved to this day elsewhere.” “You do not know which was the best and most handsome generation of men which has ever lived on this earth,” said the priests of Sais to Solon, according to Plato. “Only a weak seed of it, of which you (Greeks) are the descendants,* is all that remains.” “Their books,” they added, “preserved the records of a great nation, which emerging from the Atlantic sea had invaded Europe and Asia (Timaeus). The Greeks were but the dwarfed and weak remnant of that once glorious nation. . . .”†
What was this nation? The secret doctrine teaches that it was the latest, seventh sub-race of the Atlanteans, already swallowed up in one of the early sub-races of the Aryan stock, one that had been gradually spreading over the continent and islands of Europe, as soon as they had begun to emerge from the seas. Descending from the high plateaux of Asia, where the two Races had sought refuge in the days of the agony of Atlantis, it had been slowly settling and colonizing the freshly emerged lands. The emigrant sub-race had rapidly increased and multiplied on that virgin soil; had divided into many families, which in their turn divided into nations. Egypt and Greece, the Phoenicians, and the Northern stocks, had thus proceeded from that one sub-race. Thousands of years later, other races — the remnants of the Atlanteans — “yellow and red, brown and black,” began to invade the new continent. There were wars in which the new comers were defeated; and they fled, some to Africa, others to remote countries. Some of these lands became in course of time — owing to new geological convulsions — islands. Being thus forcibly
* For a full discussion of the relations between the old Greeks and Romans, and the Atlantean colonists, cf. “Five Years of Theosophy.”
† The story about Atlantis and all the traditions thereon were told, as all know, by Plato in his “Timaeus and Critias.” Plato, when a child, had it from his grand-sire Critias, aged ninety, who in his youth had been told of it by Solon, his father Dropidas’ friend — Solon, one of the Grecian Seven Sages. No more reliable source could be found, we believe.
separated from the continents, the result was that the undeveloped tribes and families of the Atlantean stock fell gradually into a still more abject and savage condition.
Did not the Spaniards in the Cibola expeditions meet with white savage chiefs; and has not the presence of African negro types in Europe in the pre-historic ages been now ascertained? It is this presence of a type associated with that of the negro, and also with that of the Mongolian, which is the stumbling-block of anthropology. The individual who lived at an incalculably distant period at La Naulette, in Belgium (Vide Dr. Carter Blake’s paper “On the Naulette Jaw,” Anthrop. Review, Sept., 1867), is an example. “The caves on the banks of the Lesse, in South-Eastern Belgium,” says this Anthropologist, “afford evidence of what is, perhaps, the lowest man, as shown by the Naulette jaw. Such man, however, had amulets of stone, perforated for the purpose of ornament; these are made of a psammite now found in the basin of the Gironde.”
Thus Belgian man was extremely ancient. That man who was antecedent to the great flood of waters — which covered the highlands of Belgium with a deposit of lehm or upland gravel 30 metres above the level of the present rivers — must have combined the characters of the Turanian and the negro. The Canstadt, or La Naulette, man, may have been black, and had nothing to do with the Aryan type whose remains are contemporary with those of the cave bear at Engis. The denizens of the Aquitaine bone-caves belong to a far later period of history, and may not be as ancient as the former.
If the statement is objected to on the ground that Science does not deny the presence of man on earth from an enormous antiquity, though that antiquity cannot be determined, since that presence is conditioned by the duration of geological periods, the age of which is not ascertained; if it is argued that the Scientists object most decidedly to the claim that man preceded the animals, for instance; or that civilization dates from the earliest Eocene period, or, again, that there have ever existed giants, three-eyed and four-armed and four-legged men, androgynes, etc., then the objectors are asked in their turn, “How do you know? What proof have you besides your personal hypotheses, each of which may be upset any day by new discoveries?” And these future discoveries are sure to prove that, whatever this earlier type of man known to Anthropologists was in complexion, he was in no respect apish. The Canstadt man, the Engis man alike possessed essentially human attributes. (Vide de Quatrefages and Hamy. “Cranes des Races Humaines.”) People have looked for the missing link at the wrong end of the chain; and the Neander valley man has long since been dismissed to the “limbo of all hasty blunders” (Ibid.). Disraeli divided man into the associates of the
apes and the angels. Reasons are given in the text in favour of an “angelic theory,” — as Christians would say — at least as applicable to some of the races of men. At all events, if man exists only since the Miocene period, even then, humanity as a whole could not be composed of the abject savages of the Palaeolithic age, as they are now represented by the Scientists. All they say is mere arbitrary speculative guess-work, invented by them to answer to and fit in with their own fanciful theories.
We speak of events hundreds of thousands years old, nay, even millions — if man dates from the geological periods* — not of any of those events which happened during the few thousand years of the pre-historic margin allowed by timid and ever-cautious history. Yet there are men of science who are almost of our way of thinking. From the brave confession of the Abbe Brasseur de Bourbourg, who says that: — “Traditions, whose traces recur in Mexico, in Central America, in Peru, and in Bolivia, suggest the idea that man existed in these different countries at the time of the gigantic upheaval of the Andes, and that he has retained the memory of it” — down to the latest palaeontologists and anthropologists, the majority of scientific men is in favour of just such an antiquity. Apropos of Peru, has any satisfactory attempt been made to determine the ethnological affinities and characteristics of the race which reared those Cyclopean erections, the ruins of which display the relics of a great civilization? At Cuelap, for instance, such are found, consisting “of a wall of wrought stones, 3,600 feet long, 560 broad, and 150 feet high, constituting a solid mass with a level summit. On this mass was another, 600 feet long, 500 broad, and 150 feet high, making an aggregate height of 300 feet. In it were rooms and cells.” (Cf., the mass of evidence collected by Donnelly to prove the Peruvian colony an offshoot of the Atlanteans.) A most suggestive fact is the startling resemblance between the architecture of these colossal buildings and that of the archaic European nations. Mr. Fergusson regards the analogies between the ruins of “Inca” civilization and the Cyclopean remains of the Pelasgians in Italy and Greece as a coincidence “the most remarkable in the history of architecture.” “It is difficult to resist the conclusion that there may be some relation between them.” The “relation” is simply explained by the derivation of the stocks,
* Haeckel’s “Man-ape” of the Miocene period is the dream of a monomaniac, which de Quatrefages (see his “Human Species,” pp. 105-113) has cleverly disposed of. It is not clear why the world should accept the lucubrations of a psychophobic materialist, (to accept whose theory necessitates the acceptance on faith of various animals unknown to Science or Nature — like the Sozura, for instance, that amphibian which has never existed anywhere outside Haeckel’s imagination), rather than the traditions of antiquity.
who devised these erections, from a common centre in an Atlantic continent. The acceptance of the latter can alone assist us to approach a solution of this and similar problems in almost every branch of modern science.
Dr. Lartet, treating upon the subject, settles the question by declaring that: — “The truth, so long contested, of the co-existence of man with the great extinct species (Elephas primigenius, Rhinoceros tichorrhinus, Hyaena spelaea, Ursus spelaeus, etc., etc.), appears to me to be henceforth unassailable and definitely conquered by science.” (“Cavernes de Perigord,” p. 35.)
It is shown elsewhere that such is also de Quatrefages’ opinion. “Man has in all probability seen Miocene times* and consequently the entire Pliocene epoch,” he says, and there are reasons for believing that “his traces will be found further back still, . . . .” he adds (“The Human Species,” p. 152.)
Egypt is far older than Europe as now traced on the map. Atlanto-Aryan tribes began to settle on it, when the British Islands† and France were not even in existence. It is well known that “the tongue of the AEgyptian Sea,” or the Delta of lower Egypt, became firm land very gradually, and followed the highlands of Abyssinia; unlike the latter, which arose suddenly, comparatively speaking, it was very slowly formed, through long ages, from successive layers of sea slime and mud, deposited annually by the soil brought down by a large river, the present Nile. Yet even the Delta as a firm and fertile land, has been inhabited for more than 100,000 years. Later tribes, with still more Aryan blood in them than their predecessors, arrived from the East, and conquered it from a people whose very name is lost to posterity, except in Secret works. It is this natural barrier of slime, which sucked in slowly and surely every boat that approached these inhospitable shores, that was, till within a few thousand of years B.C., the best safeguard of the later Egyptians, who had managed to reach it through Arabia, Abyssinia, and Nubia, led on by Manu Vina in the day of Visvamitra. (See in “Isis Unveiled,” vol. 1, p. 627, what Kulluka Bhatta says.)
So evident does the antiquity of man become with every day that even the Church is preparing an honourable surrender and retreat. The learned Abbe Fabre, professor at the Sorbonne, has categorically declared
* The ingenious author of “Atlantis, the Ante-diluvian World,” in discussing the origin of various Grecian and Roman institutions, expresses his conviction that “the roots of the institutions of to-day reach back to the Miocene Age.” Ay, and further yet, as already stated.
† As we know them, however. For not only does Geology prove that the British islands have been four times submerged and re-elevated, but that the straits between them and Europe were dry land at a remote former epoch.
that pre-historic palaeontology and archaeology may, without any harm to the Scriptures, discover in the tertiary beds . . . . . the traces of pre-adamite man as much as they like. “Since it disregards all creations anterior to the last deluge but one, (that which produced the diluvium, according to the Abbe), Bible revelation leaves us free to admit the existence of man in the grey diluvium, in Pliocene, and even Eocene strata. On the other hand, however, geologists are not all agreed in regarding the men who inhabited the globe in these primitive ages as our ancestors.*
The day when the Church will find that its only salvation lies in the occult interpretation of the Bible, may not be so far off as some imagine. Already many an abbe and ecclesiastic has become an ardent Kabalist, and as many appear publicly in the arena, breaking a lance with Theosophists and Occultists in support of the metaphysical interpretation of the Bible. But they commence, unfortunately for them, from the wrong end. They are advised, before they begin to speculate upon the metaphysical in their Scriptures, to study and master that which relates to the purely physical — e.g., its geological and ethnological hints. For such allusions to the Septenary constitution of the Earth and Man, to the seven Rounds and Races, abound in the New as in the Old Testaments, and are as visible as the sun in the heavens to him who reads both symbolically. What do the laws in chapter xxiii., v. 15, of Leviticus apply to? What is the philosophy of reason for all such hebdomadic offerings and symbolical calculations as: “ye shall count . . . . from the morrow after the Sabbath . . . . that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven Sabbaths shall be completed” (15), “And ye shall offer with the bread seven lambs without blemish” (18), etc. etc. We shall be contradicted, no doubt, when we say that all these “wave” and “peace” offerings were in commemoration of the Seven “Sabbaths” of the mysteries, which Sabbaths are seven pralayas, between seven manvantaras, or what we call Rounds — for “Sabbath” is an elastic word, meaning a period of Rest of whatever nature, as explained elsewhere (Part II., “Sections on the Septenary.”) And if this is not sufficiently conclusive, then we may turn to the verse which follows (16), and which adds, “even unto the morrow after the seventh Sabbath shall ye number fifty days” (forty-nine, 7 x 7, stages of activity, and forty-nine stages of rest, on the seven globes of the chain, and then
* “Les origines de la terre et de l’homme,” p. 454. To this, Professor N. Joly, of Toulouse, who quotes the Abbe in his “Man before Metals,” expresses the hope that M. Fabre will permit him “to differ from him on this last point,” p. 186. So do the Occultists; for though they claim a vast difference in the physiology and outward appearance of the five races so far evolved, still they maintain that the present human species has descended from one and the same primitive stock, evolved from the “divine men” — our common ancestors and progenitors.
comes the rest of Sabbath, the fiftieth); after which “ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the Lord,” i.e., ye shall make an offering of your flesh or “coats of skin,” and, divesting yourselves of your bodies, ye shall remain pure spirits. This law of offering, degraded and materialized with ages, was an institution that dated from the earliest Atlanteans; it came to the Hebrews via the “Chaldees,” who were the “wise men” of a caste, not of a nation, a community of great adepts come from their “Serpent-holes,” and who had settled in Babylonia ages before. And if this interpretation from Leviticus (full of the disfigured laws of Manu) is found too far-fetched, then turn to Revelation. Whatever interpretation profane mystics may give to the famous Chapter xvii., with its riddle of the woman in purple and scarlet; whether Protestants nod at the Roman Catholics, when reading “Mystery, Babylon the Great, the Mother of Harlots and Abominations of the Earth,” or Roman Catholics glare at the Protestants, the Occultists pronounce, in their impartiality, that these words have applied from the first to all and every exoteric Churchianity, that which was the “ceremonial magic” of old, with its terrible effects, and is now the harmless (because distorted) farce of ritualistic worship. The “mystery” of the woman and of the beast, are the symbols of soul-killing Churchianity and of Superstition. “The beast that was, and is not, and yet is.” “And here is the Mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains (seven continents and seven races) on which the woman sitteth,” the symbol of all the exoteric, barbarous, idolatrous faiths which have covered that symbol “with the blood of the saints and the blood of the martyrs” who protested and do protest. “And there are seven Kings (seven races); five are fallen (our fifth race included), and one is (the fifth continues), and the other (the sixth and the seventh races) is not yet come. . . . And when he (the race “King”) cometh, he must continue a short space” (v. 10). There are many such Apocalyptic allusions, but the student has to find them out for himself. These five Kings were mentioned before.
If the Bible combines with archaeology and geology to show that human civilization has passed through three more or less distinct stages, in Europe at least; and if man, both in America and Europe, as much as in Asia, dates from geological epochs — why should not the statements of the Secret Doctrine be taken into consideration? Is it more philosophical or logical and scientific too, to disbelieve, with Mr. Albert Gaudry, in Miocene man, while believing that the famous Thenay flints* “were carved by the Dryopithecus monkey”; or, with the Occultist, that the anthro-
* “The flints of Thenay bear unmistakable trace of the work of human hands.” (G. de Mortillet, “Promenades au Musee de St. Germain,” p. 76.)
pomorphous monkey came ages after man? For if it is once conceded, and even scientifically demonstrated, that “there was not in the middle of the Miocene epoch a single species of mammal identical with species now extant” (Albert Gaudry “Les Enchainements du monde animal dans les temps geologiques” p. 240); and that man was then just as he is now; only taller, and more athletic than we are,* — then where is the difficulty? That they could hardly be the descendants of monkeys, which are themselves not traced before the Miocene epoch,† is, on the other hand, testified to by several eminent naturalists.
“Thus, in the savage of quaternary ages who had to fight against the mammoth with stone weapons, we find all those craniological characters generally considered as the sign of great intellectual development” (de Quatrefages, “The Human Species”, p. 312.)
Unless man emerged spontaneously, endowed with all his intellect and wisdom, from his brainless catarrhine ancestor, he could not have acquired such brain within the limits of the Miocene period, if we are to believe the learned Abbe Bourgeois (Vide infra, footnote†).
As to the matter of giants, though the tallest man hitherto found in Europe among fossils is the “Mentone man” (6 ft. 8 in.), others may yet be excavated. Nilsson, quoted by Lubbock, states that “in a tomb of the neolithic age . . . . a skeleton of extraordinary size was found in 1807,” and that it was attributed to a king of Scotland, Albus McGaldus.
And if in our own day we occasionally find men and women from 7 ft. to even 9 ft. and 11 ft. high, this only proves — on the law of atavism, or the reappearance of ancestral features of character — that there was a time when 9 ft. and 10 ft. was the average height of humanity, even in our latest Indo-European race.
But as the subject was sufficiently treated elsewhere, we may pass on to the Lemurians and the Atlanteans, and see what the old Greeks knew of these early races and what the moderns know now.
The great nation mentioned by the Egyptian priests, from which descended the forefathers of the Greeks of the age of Troy, and which, as averred, had been destroyed by the Atlantic race, was then, as we see, assuredly no race of Palaeolithic savages. Nevertheless, already in the days of Plato, with the exception of priests and Initiates, no one seems
* Speaking of the reindeer hunters of Perigord, Joly says of them that “they were of great height, athletic, with a strongly built skeleton . . .” etc. (“Man before Metals,” p. 353).
† “On the shores of the lake of Beauce,” says the Abbe Bourgeois, “man lived in the midst of a fauna which completely disappeared (Aceratherium, Tapir, Mastodon). With the fluviatile sands of Orleanais came the anthropomorphous monkey (pliopithecus antiquus); therefore, later than man.” (See Comptes Rendus of the “Prehistoric Congress” of 1867 at Paris.)
to have preserved any distinct recollection of the preceding races. The earliest Egyptians had been separated from the latest Atlanteans for ages upon ages; they were themselves descended from an alien race, and had settled in Egypt some 400,000 years before,* but their Initiates had preserved all the records. Even so late as the time of Herodotus, they had still in their possession the statues of 341 kings who had reigned over their little Atlanto-Aryan Sub-race (Vide about the latter “Esoteric Buddhism,” p. 66, Fifth Edition.) If one allows only twenty years as an average figure for the reign of each King, the duration of the Egyptian Empire has to be pushed back, from the day of Herodotus, about 17,000 years.
Bunsen allowed the great Pyramid an antiquity of 20,000 years. More modern archaeologists will not give it more than 5,000, or at the utmost 6,000 years; and generously concede to Thebes with its hundred gates, 7,000 years from the date of its foundation. And yet there are records which show Egyptian priests — Initiates — journeying in a North-Westerly direction, by land, via what became later the Straits of Gibraltar; turning North and travelling through the future Phoenician settlements of Southern Gaul; then still further North, until reaching Carnac (Morbihan) they turned to the West again and arrived, still travelling by land, on the North-Western promontory of the New Continent.†
What was the object of their long journey? And how far back must we place the date of such visits? The archaic records show the Initiates of the Second Sub-race of the Aryan family moving from one land to the other for the purpose of supervising the building of menhirs and dolmens, of colossal Zodiacs in stone, and places of sepulchre to serve as receptables for the ashes of generations to come. When was it? The fact of their crossing from France to Great Britain by land may give an idea of the date when such a journey could have been performed on terra firma.
* “In making soundings in the stony soil of the Nile Valley two baked bricks were discovered, one at the depth of 20, the other at 25 yards. If we estimate the thickness of the annual deposit formed by the river at 8 inches per century (more careful calculations have shown no more than from three to five per century), we must assign to the first of these bricks 12,000 years, and to the second 14,000 years. By means of analogous calculations, Burmeister supposes 72,000 years to have elapsed since the first appearance of man on the soil of Egypt, and Draper attributes to the European man, who witnessed the last glacial epoch, an antiquity of more than 250,000 years.” (“Man before Metals,” p. 183.) Egyptian Zodiacs show more than 75,000 years of observation! (See further.) Note well also that Burmeister speaks only of the Delta population.
† Or on what are now the British Islands, which were not yet detached from the main continent in those days. “The ancient inhabitant of Picardy could pass into Great Britain without crossing the Channel. The British Isles were united to Gaul by an isthmus which has since been submerged.” (“Man before Metals,” p. 184.)
It was —
“When the level of the Baltic and of the North Sea was 400 feet higher than it is now; when the valley of the Somme was not hollowed to the depth it has now attained; when Sicily was joined to Africa, Barbary to Spain,” when “Carthage, the Pyramids of Egypt, the palaces of Uxmal and Palenque were not in existence, and the bold navigators of Tyre and Sidon, who at a later date were to undertake their perilous voyages along the coasts of Africa, were yet unborn. What we know with certainty is that European man was contemporaneous with the extinct species of the quaternary epoch . . . . that he witnessed the upheaval of the Alps* and the extension of the glaciers, in a word that he lived for thousands of years before the dawn of the remotest historical traditions . . . . It is even possible that man was the contemporary of extinct mammalia of species yet more ancient . . . . of the Elephas meridionalis of the sands of St. Prest . . . and the Elephas antiquus, assumed to be prior to the elephas primigenius, since their bones are found in company with carved flints in several English caves, associated with those of the Rhinoceros hemitaechus and even of the Machairodus latidens, which is of still earlier date . . . . M. E. Lartet is of opinion that there is nothing really impossible in the existence of man as early as the Tertiary period.”†
If “there is nothing impossible” scientifically in the idea, and it may be admitted that man lived already as early as the Tertiary period, then it is just as well to remind the reader that Mr. Croll places the beginning of that period 2,500,000 years back (See Croll’s “Climate and Time”); but there was a time when he assigned to it 15,000,000 years.
And if all this may be said of European man, how great is the antiquity of the Lemuro-Atlantean and of the Atlanto-Aryan man? Every educated person who follows the progress of Science, knows how all vestiges of man during the Tertiary period are received. The calumnies that were poured on Desnoyers in 1863, when he made known to the Institute of France that he had made a discovery “in the undisturbed pliocene sands of St. Prest near Chartres, proving the co-existence of man and the Elephas meridionalis” — were equal to the occasion. The later discovery (in 1867) by the Abbe Bourgeois, that man lived in the Miocene epoch, and the reception it was given at the Pre-historic Con-
* He witnessed and remembered it too, as “the final disappearance of the largest continent of Atlantis was an event coincident with the elevation of the Alps,” a master writes (See Esoteric Buddhism p. 70). Pari passu, as one portion of the dry land of our hemisphere disappeared, some land of the new continent emerged from the seas. It is on this colossal cataclysm, which lasted during a period of 150,000 years, that traditions of all the “Deluges” are built, the Jews building their version on an event which took place later in “Poseidonis.”
† The Antiquity of the Human Race in “Men before Metals,” by M. Joly, Professor at the Science Faculty of Toulouse, p. 184.
gress held at Brussels in 1872, proves that the average man of Science will never see but that which he wants to see.*
The modern archeologist, though speculating ad infinitum upon the dolmens and their builders, knows, in fact, nothing of them or their origin. Yet, these weird, and often colossal monuments of unhewn stones — which consist generally of four or seven gigantic blocks placed together — are strewn over Asia, Europe, America, and Africa, in groups or rows. Stones of enormous size are found placed horizontally and variously upon two, three, four, and as in Poitou, upon six and seven blocks. People name them “devil’s altars,” druidic stones, and giant tombs. The stones of Carnac in the Morbihan, Brittany — nearly a mile in length and numbering 11,000 ranged in eleven rows — are twin sisters of those at Stonehenge. The Conical menhir of Loch-Maria-ker in Morbihan, measures twenty yards in length and nearly two yards across. The Menhir of Champ Dolent (near St. Malo) rises thirty feet above the ground, and is fifteen feet in depth below. Such dolmens and prehistoric monuments are met with in almost every latitude. They are found in the Mediterranean basin; in Denmark (among the local tumuli from twenty-seven to thirty-five feet in height); in Shetland, and in Sweden, where they are called ganggriften (or tombs with corridors); in Germany, where they are known as the giant tombs (Hunengraben); in Spain (see the dolmen of Antiguera near Malaga), and Africa; in Palestine and Algeria; in Sardinia (see the Nuraghi and Sepolture dei giganti, or tombs of giants); in Malabar, in India, where they are called the tombs of the Daityas (giants) and of the Rakshasas, the men-demons of Lanka; in Russia and Siberia, where they are known as the Koorgan; in Peru and Bolivia, where they are termed the chulpas or burial places, etc., etc., etc.
There is no country from which they are absent. Who built them? Why are they all connected with Serpents and Dragons, with Alligators and Crocodiles? Because remains of “palaeolithic man” were, it is thought, found in some of them, and because in the funeral mounds of America bodies of later races were discovered with the usual paraphernalia of bone necklaces, weapons, stone and copper urns, etc., hence they are declared ancient tombs. But surely the two famous mounds — one in the Mississippi valley and the other in Ohio — known respectively as “the Alligator Mound” and “the Great Serpent
* The scientific “jury” disagreed, as usual; while de Quatrefages, de Mortillet, Worsaae, Engelhardt, Waldemar, Schmidt, Capellini, Hamy, and Cartailhac, saw upon the flints the traces of human handiwork, Steenstrup, Virchow and Desor refused to do so. Still the majority, if we except some English Scientists, are for Bourgeois.
Mound,” were never meant for tombs* (Vide infra). Yet one is told authoritatively that the Mounds, and the Mound or Dolmen Builders, are all “Pelasgic” in Europe, antecedent to the Incas, in America, yet of “not extremely distant times.” They are built by “no race of Dolmen Builders,” which never existed (opinion of De Mortillet, Bastian, and Westropp) save in the earlier archeological fancy. Finally Virchow’s opinion of the giant tombs of Germany is now accepted as an axiom: — “The tombs alone are gigantic, and not the bones they contain” — says that German biologist; and archaeology has but to bow and submit to the decision.†
That no gigantic skeletons have been hitherto found in the “tombs” is yet no reason to say there never were the remains of giants in them. Cremation was universal till a comparatively recent period — some 80, or 100,000 years ago. The real giants, moreover, were nearly all drowned with Atlantis. Nevertheless, the classics, as shown elsewhere, often speak of giant skeletons still excavated in their day. Besides this, human fossils may be counted on the fingers, as yet. No skeleton ever yet found is older than between 50, or 60,000 years,‡ and man’s size was reduced from 15 to 10 or 12 feet, ever since the third sub-race of the Aryan stock, which sub-race — born and developed in Europe and Asia Minor under new climates and conditions — had become European. Since then, as said, it has steadily been decreasing. It is truer therefore to say, that the tombs alone are archaic, and not necessarily the bodies of men occasionally found in them; and that those tombs, since they are gigantic, must have contained giants,§ or rather the ashes of generations of giants.
* We take the following description from a scientific work. “The first of these animals (the alligator) designed with considerable skill, is no less than 250 ft. long. . . . . The interior is formed of a heap of stones, over which the form has been moulded in fine stiff clay. The great serpent is represented with open mouth, in the act of swallowing an egg of which the diameter is 100 ft. in the thickest part; the body of the animal is wound in graceful curves and the tail is rolled into a spiral. The entire length of the animal is 1,100 ft. This work is unique . . . . and there is nothing on the old continent which offers any analogy to it.” Except its symbolism, however, of the Serpent — the cycle of Time — swallowing Kosmos, the egg.
† It might be better, perhaps, for fact had we more Specialists in Science and fewer “authorities” on universal questions. One never heard that Humboldt gave authoritative and final decisions in the matter of polypi, or the nature of an excrescence.
‡ 57,000 years is the date assigned by Dr. Dowler to the remains of the human skeleton, found buried beneath four ancient forests at New Orleans on the banks of the Mississippi river.
§ Murray says of the Mediterranean barbarians that they marvelled at the prowess of the Atlanteans. “Their physical strength was extraordinary (witness indeed their cyclopean buildings), the earth shaking sometimes under their tread. Whatever they did, was done speedily. . . . . . They were wise and communicated their wisdom to men” (Mythology p. 4).
Nor were all such cyclopean structures intended for sepulchres. It is with the so-called Druidical remains, such as Carnac in Brittany and Stonehenge in Great Britain, that the travelling Initiates above alluded to had to do. And these gigantic monuments are all symbolic records of the World’s history. They are not Druidical, but universal. Nor did the Druids build them, for they were only the heirs to the cyclopean lore left to them by generations of mighty builders and — “magicians,” both good and bad.
It will always be a subject of regret that history, rejecting a priori the actual existence of giants, has preserved us so little of the records of antiquity concerning them. Yet in nearly every mythology — which after all is ancient history — the giants play an important part. In the old Norse mythology, the giants, Skrymir and his brethren, against whom the sons of the gods fought, were potent factors in the histories of deities and men. The modern exegesis, that makes these giants to be the brethren of the dwarfs, and reduces the combats of the gods to the history of the development of the Aryan race, will only receive credence amongst the believers in the Aryan theory, as expounded by Max Muller. Granting that the Turanian races were typified by the dwarfs (Dwergar), and that a dark, round-headed, and dwarfish race was driven northward by the fair-faced Scandinavians, or AEsir, the gods being like unto men, there still exists neither in history nor any other scientific work any anthropological proof whatever of the existence in time or space of a race of giants. Yet that such exist, relatively and de facto side by side with dwarfs, Schweinfurth can testify. The Nyam-Nyam of Africa are regular dwarfs, while their next neighbours (several tribes of comparatively fair-complexioned Africans) are giants when confronted with the Nyam-Nyams, and very tall even among Europeans, for their women are all above 6 1/2 feet high. (Vide Schweinfurth’s latest works.)
In Cornwall and in ancient Britain the traditions of these giants are, on the other hand, excessively common; they are said to live even down to the time of King Arthur. All this shows that giants lived to a later date amongst the Celtic than among the Teutonic peoples.
If we turn to the New World, we have traditions of a race of giants at Tarija on the eastern slopes of the Andes and in Ecuador, who combated gods and men. These old beliefs, which term certain localities “Los campos de los gigantes” — “the fields of giants,” are always concomitant with the existence of pliocene mammalia and the occurrence of pliocene raised beaches. “All the giants are not under Mount Ossa,” and it would be poor anthropology indeed that would restrict the traditions of giants to Greek and Bible mythologies. Slavonian countries, Russia especially, teem with legends about the bogaterey (mighty giants)
of old; and their folklore, most of which has served for the foundation of national histories, their oldest songs, and their most archaic traditions, speak of the giants of old. Thus we may safely reject the modern theory that would make of the Titans mere symbols standing for cosmic forces. They were real living men, whether twenty or only twelve feet high. Even the Homeric heroes, who, of course, belonged to a far more recent period in the history of the races, appear to have wielded weapons of a size and weight beyond the strength of the strongest men of modern times.
“Not twice ten men the mighty bulk could raise,
Such men as live in these degenerate days.”
If the fossil footprints from Carson, Indiana, U.S.A., are human, they indicate gigantic men. Of their genuineness there can remain no doubt. It is to be deplored that the modern and scientific evidence for gigantic men should rest on footprints alone. Over and over again, the skeletons of hypothetical giants have been identified with those of elephants and mastodons. But all such blunders before the days of geology, and even the traveller’s tales of Sir John Mandeville, who says that he saw giants 56 feet high, in India, only show that belief in the existence of giants has never, at any time, died out of the thoughts of men.
That which is known and accepted is, that several races of gigantic men have existed and left distinct traces. In the journal of the Anthropological Institute (Vol. 1871, art. by Dr. C. Carter Blake) such a race is shown as having existed at Palmyra and possibly in Midian, exhibiting cranial forms quite different from those of the Jews. It is not improbable that another such race existed in Samaria, and that the mysterious people who built the stone circles in Galilee, hewed neolithic flints in the Jordan valley and preserved an ancient Semitic language quite distinct from the square Hebrew character — was of a very large stature. The English translations of the Bible can never be relied upon, even in their modern revised forms. They tell us of the Nephilim translating the word by “giants,” and further adding that they were “hairy” men, probably the large and powerful prototypes of the later satyrs so eloquently described by the patristic fancy; some of the Church Fathers assuring their admirers and followers that they had themselves seen these “Satyrs” — some alive, others pickled and preserved. The word “giants” being once adopted as a synonym of Nephilim, the commentators have since identified them with the sons of Anak. The filibusters who seized on the Promised Land, found a pre-existing population far exceeding their own in stature, and called it a race of giants. But the races of really gigantic men had disappeared ages before the birth of Moses. This tall people existed in Canaan, and
even in Bashan, and may have had representatives in the Nabatheans of Midian. They were of far greater stature than the undersized Jews. Four thousand years ago their cranial conformation and large stature separated them from the children of Heber. Forty thousand years ago their ancestors may have been of still more gigantic size, and four hundred thousand years earlier they must have been in proportion to men in our days as the Brobdingnagians were to the Lilliputians. The Atlanteans of the middle period were called the Great Dragons, and the first symbol of their tribal deities, when the “gods” and the Divine Dynasties had forsaken them, was that of a giant Serpent.
The mystery veiling the origin and the religion of the Druids, is as great as that of their supposed fanes is to the modern Symbologist, but not to the initiated Occultists. Their priests were the descendants of the last Atlanteans, and what is known of them is sufficient to allow the inference that they were eastern priests akin to the Chaldeans and Indians, though little more. It may be inferred that they symbolized their deity as the Hindus do their Vishnu, as the Egyptians did their Mystery God, and as the builders of the Ohio Great-Serpent mound worshipped theirs — namely under the form of the “mighty Serpent,” the emblem of the eternal deity Time (the Hindu Kala). Pliny called them the “Magi of the Gauls and Britons.” But they were more than that. The author of “Indian Antiquities” finds much affinity between the Druids and the Brahmins of India. Dr. Borlase points to a close analogy between them and the Magi of Persia*; others will see an identity between them and the Orphic priesthood of Thrace: simply because they were connected, in their esoteric teachings, with the universal Wisdom Religion, and thus presented affinities with the exoteric worship of all.
Like the Hindus, the Greeks and Romans (we speak of the Initiates), the Chaldees and the Egyptians, the Druids believed in the doctrine of a succession of worlds, as also in that of seven “creations” (of new continents) and transformations of the face of the earth, and in a seven-fold night and day for each earth or globe (See “Esoteric Buddhism”). Wherever the Serpent with the egg is found, there this tenet was surely present. Their Dracontia are a proof of it. This belief was so universal that, if we seek for it in the esotericism of various religions, we shall discover it in all. We shall find it among the Aryan Hindus and Mazdeans, the Greeks, the Latins, and even among the old Jews and early Christians, whose modern stocks
* But the Magi of Persia were never Persians — not even Chaldeans. They came from a far-off land, the Orientalists being of opinion that the said land was Media. This may be so, but from what part of Media? To this we receive no answer.
hardly comprehend now that which they read in their Scriptures. See what Seneca says in Epistle 9, and Quaest. Nat. III., c., ult.: “The world being melted and having re-entered the bosom of Jupiter, this god continues for some time to remain absorbed in himself and concealed, wholly immersed in contemplation. After which a new world springs from him. . . . An innocent race of men and animals are produced anew . . . etc.” Then again when speaking of periodical mundane dissolution involving universal death, he (Seneca) says that “when the laws of nature shall be buried in ruin, and the last day of the world shall come, the southern pole shall crush, as it falls, all the regions of Africa, and the North pole shall overwhelm all the countries beneath its axis. The affrighted sun shall be deprived of its light; the palace of heaven falling to decay shall produce at once both life and death, and some kind of dissolution shall equally seize upon all deities, who thus shall return into their original chaos” (Quoted in “Book of God,” p. 160.)
One might imagine oneself reading the Puranic account by Parasara of the great Pralaya. It is nearly the same thing, idea for idea. Has Christianity nothing of the kind? It has, we say. Let the reader open any English Bible and read chapter iii. of the Second Epistle of Peter, from verse iii. till the xivth, and he will find there the same ideas. . . . “There shall come in the last days scoffers . . . saying, ‘where is the promise of his coming? . . . . Since the fathers fell asleep all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.’ For, they are ignorant . . . . that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished. But the heavens and the earth that are now, are reserved unto the fire . . . . wherein the heavens . . . . shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat . . . . we nevertheless look for new heavens and new earth, etc., etc.” If the interpreters chose to see in this a reference to creation, the deluge, and the promised coming of Christ, when they will live in a new Jerusalem in heaven, this is no fault of “Peter.” What the writer of the Epistles meant was the destruction of this Fifth Race of ours by subterranean fires and inundations, and the appearance of new continents for the Sixth Root-Race. For the writers of these Epistles were all learned in symbology if not in the sciences.
It was mentioned elsewhere that the belief in the septenary constitution of our “chain” was the oldest tenet of the early Iranians, who got it from the first Zarathustra. It is time to prove it to those Parsis who have lost the key to the meaning of their Scriptures. In the Avesta the earth is considered septempartite and tripartite at one and the same time. This is regarded by Dr. Geiger, as an incongruity, for the following reasons, which he calls discrepancies: the Avesta speaks
of the three-thirds of the earth because the Rig-Veda mentions “three earths.” . . . . “Three strata or layers, one lying above the other, are said to be meant by this.”* But he is quite mistaken, as are all exoteric profane translators. The Avesta has not borrowed the idea from the Rig-Veda, but simply repeats the esoteric teaching. The “three strata or layers” do not refer to our globe alone, but to three layers of the globes of our terrestrial chain — two by two, on each plane, one on the descending, the other on the ascending arc. Thus, with reference to the six spheres or globes above our earth, the seventh and the fourth, it is septempartite, while with regard to the planes over our plane — it is tripartite. This meaning is carried out and corroborated by the text in the Avesta and Vendidad, and even by the speculations — a most laborious and unsatisfactory guess-work — of the translators and commentators. It thus follows that the division of the “earth,” or rather the earth’s chain, into seven Karshvars is not in contradiction with the three “zones,” if this word is read “planes.” As Geiger remarks, this septenary division is very old — the oldest of all — since the Gathas already speak of the “septempartite earth.” (Bumi haptaiti, Yasna, xxxii., 3.) For, “according to the Parsee Scriptures, the seven Karshvars are to be considered as completely disconnected parts of the earth,” which they surely are. For, “between them there flows the Ocean, so that it is impossible, as stated in several passages, to pass from one Karshvar to another.”† The “Ocean” is space, of course, for the latter was called “Waters of Space” before it was known as Ether. Moreover, the word Karshvar is consistently rendered by Dwipa, and especially Qaniratha by Jambudwipa (“Neriosengh, the translator of the Yasna.”)‡ But this fact is not taken into account by the Orientalists, and therefore we find even such a learned Zoroastrian and Parsi by birth as the translator of Dr. Geiger’s work passing unnoticed and without a word of comment sundry remarks of the former on the “incongruities” of this kind abounding in the Mazdean Scriptures. One of such “incongruities” and “coincidences” concerns the similarity of the Zoroastrian with the Indian tenet with regard to the seven Dwipas (islands, or continents, rather) as met with in the Puranas, namely: “The Dwipas form concentric rings, which, separated by the ocean, surround Jambu Dvipa, which is situated in the centre” (p. 130, vol. I.), and, “according to the Iranian view, the Karshvar Qaniratha is likewise situated in the centre of the rest . . . . each of them (the other six Karshvars) is a
* p. 129, “Civilization of the Eastern Iranians in Ancient Times.”
† Cf., e.g., Vol. I., 4, of the Pablavi Translation; Bdh. xxi., 2-3.
‡ Footnote by Darab Dastur Peshotan Sanjana, B.A., the translator of Dr. Wilhelm Geiger’s work on the “Civilization of the Eastern Iranians.”
peculiar individual space, and so they group themselves round (above) Qaniratha” (ibid. p. 131). Now Qaniratha is not, as believed by Geiger and his translator, “the country inhabited by the Iranian tribes,” and the other names do not mean “the adjacent territories of foreign nations in the North, South, West, and East” (p. 132), but our globe or Earth. For that which is meant by the sentence which follows the last quoted, namely, that “two Vorubarshti and Voru-Zarshti lie in the North; two, Vidadhafshu and Tradadhafshu, in the South; Savahi and Arzahi in the East and West,” is simply the very graphic and accurate description of the “chain” of our planet, the Earth, represented in the book of Dzyan (11) thus:
The Mazdean names given above have only to be replaced by those used in the Secret Doctrine to become an orthodox tenet. The “Earth” (our World), therefore, is “tripartite,” because the chain of the worlds is situated on three different planes above our globe; and it is septempartite because of the seven globes or spheres which compose the chain. Hence the further meaning given in Vendidad XIX. 39, showing that “Qaniratha alone is combined with imat, ‘this’ (earth), while all other Karshvares are combined with the word ‘avat,’ ‘that’ or those — upper earths.” Nothing could be plainer.
The same may be said of the modern comprehension of all other ancient beliefs.
The Druids understood the meaning of the Sun in Taurus, therefore, when, while all the fires were extinguished on the 1st of November, their sacred and inextinguishable fires alone remained to illumine the horizon, like those of the Magi and the modern Zoroastrians. And like the early Fifth Race and later Chaldees, the Greeks, and again like the Christians, who do the same to this day, without suspecting the real meaning, they greeted the Morning Star — the beautiful Venus-Lucifer.*
* Dr. Kenealy quotes, in his “Book of God,” Vallancey, who says “I had not been a week landed in Ireland from Gibraltar, where I had studied Hebrew and Chaldaic under Jews of various countries, when I heard a peasant girl say to a boor standing by her “Teach an Maddin Nag” (Behold the morning star), pointing to the planet Venus, the Maddena Nag of the Chaldeans.”
Strabo speaks of an island near to Britannia, “where Ceres and Persephone were worshipped with the same rites as in Samothrace (lib. iv.) and this island was Sacred Ierna,” where a perpetual fire was lit. The Druids believed in the rebirth of man, not as Lucian explains: “that the same spirit shall animate a new body, not here, but in a different world,” but in a series of re-incarnations in this same world; for as Diodorus says, they declared that the souls of men, after determinate periods, would pass into other bodies.*
These tenets came to the Fifth Race Aryans from their predecessors of the Fourth Race, the Atlanteans. They had piously preserved the teachings, which told them how their parent Root-Race, becoming with every generation more arrogant, owing to the acquisition of superhuman powers, had been gradually gliding toward its end. Those records reminded them of the giant intellect of the preceding races as well as of their giant size. One finds the repetition of those records in every age of history, in almost every old fragment which has descended to us from antiquity.
AElian preserved an extract from Theophrastus written during the days of Alexander the Great. It is a dialogue between Midas, the Phrygian, and Silenus. The former is told of a continent that had existed in times of old, so immense, that Asia, Europe and Africa seemed like poor islands compared with it. It was the last to produce animals and plants of gigantic magnitudes. There, said Silenus, men grew to double the size of the tallest man in his (the narrator’s) time, and they lived to twice as old an age. They had wealthy cities with temples, and one of such (cities) held more than a million of inhabitants in it, gold and silver being found there in great abundance. . . .
Grote’s suggestion that Atlantis was but a myth arisen from a mirage — clouds on a dazzling sky taking the appearance of islands on a golden sea — is too disingenuous to be even noticed.
[[This page continued in next section]]
* There was a time when the whole world, the totality of mankind, had one religion, and when they were of “one lip.” “All the religions of the Earth were at first One and emanated from one centre,” says Faber very truly.