Ancient Planes, Rockets, and Helicopters?

I feel a little embarrassed. I can’t believe I forgot to blog this, though I probably intended to redo the page and make it look nice. Oh well.

The last time I was on Coast to Coast, I threw this page together (in about an hour – I know, it shows) since I knew people would ask about “the alien technology” of ancient flight.  The page sketches some of the “evidence” for planes/gliders in ancient Egypt, helicopters at Abydos, and rockets at Byblos. Pure PaleoBabble. As brilliant as some ancient engineers were, there is no evidence that their technology moved in this direction.

My apologies for letting this go months without posting it


Came across a nice (and fairly lengthy) article on Egyptomania today. A nice sketch. For those PaleoBabble faithful who want solid academic material on the wacky things people think and have thought about Egypt (including pyramidiocy and the “true” symbolic meaning of hieroglyphs), the two titles below are for you.

The Myth of Egypt and Its Hieroglyphs in European Tradition

Deals with the very wrong notions about hieroglyphs that were embraced before their decipherment, and still perpetuated by “symbolists” like John Anthony West and William Henry. Sorry guys, ancient hieroglyphs really were the basis of a phonetic language, not symbols for carrying abstract ideas (i.e., your gateway to making the Egyptians say just about anything).

The Secret Lore of Egypt: Its Impact on the West

An admirably dispassionate survey of Egyptomaniacal material from the Hermetic era through modern Afrocentrism. Aims to be informative rather than going after the Egyptomaniacs. The author is noted Egyptologist Erik Hornung (translated by David Lorton).

New Testament Resurrection Theology Based on Ancient Egyptian Religion?

Anyone who has seen the internet video Zeitgeist likely recalls this assertion about New Testament theology. Those in academia know that Zeitgeist’s content is deeply flawed, but that hardly matters, since most of the people who but into its ideas aren’t scholars or anyone else working in the fields of New Testament Studies or Egyptology.

Toward exposing this truckload of paleobabble, I submit this article by Nicholas Perrin entitled, “On Raising Osiris in 1 Corinthians 15.” It’s a scholarly piece, but I think it’s readable for the non-specialist. It exposes the problems with this popular correlation.

Some Classic PaleoBabble

I have to agree with Claude Mariotti’s assessment at the end of this post.  I get this kind of incoherent pablum all the time.  There really is no end to it. People think because they can construct sentences and group them that the ideas therein have some inherent sensibility to them, no matter that not a single fact supports them (“I heard someone say it, or I said it, therefore it is coherent and true”). In case the emailer sees this post, I challenge him to provide real factual data (which means something beyond where they heard it; that nonsense exists does not mean it is proven not to be nonsensical).

Alien Fetus in King Tut’s Tomb?

Well . . . half of that is right . . . the fetus part, anyway.

The picture below is often offered as part of the “aliens visited ancient Egypt” paleobabblefest on the internet.

The mummified corpse on the right is said to be alien (“just look at the head and eyes . . . must be alien”).  Alien researchers also like to wonder aloud why the scientific community hides such information and doesn’t just admit it’s proof of aliens.

Is this an alien body?  Nope. And it’s hardly a secret picture, either. The picture can be found in Nicholas Reeves’ book, The Complete Tutankhamen (1990, pp. 124-125), a widely-sold resource on King Tut.

So what is it?  It’s one of two HUMAN CHILD fetuses found in Tut’s tomb. Here is the original in situ photo of the tomb tiny sarcophagi:

The scale of the two small fetuses is perhaps better noted from this (again, hardly secret) photo of Zahi Hawass unwrapping one of the fetuses:

Now here’s a closeup of the unwrapped fetus:

Gosh!  That sure looks like an alien!  Yeah; it looks like an alien all right — unless you’ve ever seen the skull and skeletal remains of a human fetus.  Here are some examples at 21.5, 30, 31, and 34 weeks, respectively. They are all photos of human skeletal recreations created by the same medical supply company that I linked to a few posts ago about elongated skulls.  (And there are more examples at the medical supply link). Everyone that goes through medical school sees skulls and skeletons like this. No news here; no aliens.

Lastly, here’s a set of human fetal skeletal remains with skull at 32 weeks. (And remember, humans aren’t aliens).

Hieroglyphics and the “Symbolic” Meanings as “Translated” by Esotericists

It’s quite common online to run across people who claim to be Egyptologists arguing for “metaphysical” meanings of hieroglyphs. I’m thinking of people like John Anthony West, who by his own admission cannot read Egyptian.  But in his mind, he doesn’t need to — since he has mastered the esoteric and metaphysical meanings of the hieroglyphs.

Such an approach is unfortunate, in that it fails to take the Egyptians at their own word (as in letting their literature just communicate to us by boring rules of Egyptian grammar and vocabulary — those silly Egyptians). It’s also antiquated (and that’s being kind). This notion of mystical meanings behind hieroglyphs was en vogue in the 17th and 18th centuries — it was the scholarly approach BEFORE EGYPTIAN WAS CRACKED AS A LANGUAGE AND TRANSLATED. Yes, you read correctly. West and others want us to approach Egyptian the way academics did before the language was actually translated and its grammar understood. This is nothing by Euro-centric paleobabble. Here’s a scholarly article that overviews these mystical approaches to hieroglyphs. We don’t need to bodly march into the 17th century to understand the Egyptians.

New Nibiru Information . . . Or More PaleoBabble?

I received a lengthy and interesting reply today to my post about the Fantasy Channel. I reproduce the substantive portions of it here for readers:

I have been studying various Mesopotamian texts for around 30 years, and there is nothing to indicate that Nibiru is a planet. Furthermore there are some very fundamental considerations that show that Nibiru could not be a planet. Here are just 3 of them:

1) The Egyptians (In The Book of the Dead) reported that: “Nibiru, The Sky Boat of Ra, could be seen passing overhead as many times as 9. Always passing from the West to the East.”
Assuming that 1 of those 9 passages occurred during twilight, we may assume the 9 passages occurred during a 13 or 14 hour period. This would indicate a total of ~16 passages per 24 hour period. Which indicates the object Nibiru was in LEO (Low Earth Orbit), probably at an altitude of roughly 300 to 400 miles above the surface.

This is well within the Roche Limit, the distance that two orbiting bodies will tear themselves apart due to their mutual gravitational tugs. Even a small object, such as Earth’s Moon, would raise life destroying tides on the planet Earth.

Item one alone indicates the Nibiru could not possibly have been a planet.

2) The Egyptians further reported that: “When Nibiru, the Sky Boat of Ra, passed in front of the Moon, its wingspan was twice that of the full Moon.”
Simple geometry shows that an object at ~300 miles altitude would appear to an Earth observer as being twice the diameter of the Moon, if it were about 4 miles across.
4 mile diameter objects of typical densities can safely orbit within the Roche Limit with no problem, tidal or otherwise.

Thus, the two Egyptian observations are not in contradiction, and we can safely assume that Nibiru was a 4 mile wide object in low Earth orbit when it was sighted by them.

3) All of the depictions of Nibiru that I have seen clearly appear to be of some sort of technical manufactured object, not a natural object.

Thus it appears very obvious that Nibiru, in today’s jargon, would be called “A Starship”, not a planet.

Remember, our word “Planet” came from the Greek, meaning “anything observed in the night sky that MOVED against the background of ‘fixed’ stars.”

I am not sure if that is where the confusion of calling Nibiru a planet originated in the translations, but the Ancient Greeks would have most certainly have called Nibiru “A Planet”, but only because it was moving, not because it is what we mean when we say ‘Planet’ today.

Finally, the very word Nibiru does not apply very well to a large natural body (like say the Earth), but applies perfectly to any type of ship, ocean going or Starship.
“Nibiru = The abode/home of the pleasant crossing.”

We don’t think of a planet as crossing anything, but we do think of ships as crossing oceans, and of Starships as crossing the great empty oceans of space between the stars.

Sounds impressive, doesn’t it?  Obviously, I don’t believe for a minute that nibiru is a starship, nor do I believe any ancient texts say so.  How can I say that in view of this response?  Here’s how.

First, I’ve asked the responder to give me the specific citations in these Egyptian texts where nibiru is mentioned. Frankly, I don’t believe they exist.  I say that because I doubt that the Chicago Assyrian Dictionary, the most exhaustive lexicon of ancient Mesopotamian language, would have missed these.  The CAD includes references to words found in other texts outside Mesopotamia (as any competent lexicon would), but it never claims to be exhaustive in that regard.  CAD is the product of nearly 60 years of research.  Yet I don’t see any reference to the Book of the Dead in the entry for neberu (the Akkadian pronunciation). I have the entire CAD in PDF, so I have reproduced the entry on neberu here so you can check for yourself (note: the entry starts on the bottom of p. 145 in CAD, so the first page of the PDF is a half page).  I had to chop the pages in half with a screen-capture tool since the PDF would not allow page extraction (it still looks okay).  Maybe I’ve missed something tucked away in here, or maybe the texts the responder is thinking of came to light after this volume was produced. Possible, but I think there is a better explanation …

Now for the better explanation.  If you read the response carefully, you’ll note that the writer refers to the Sky Boat of Ra as though it were nibiru.  THIS is what’s going on.  “Nibiru” isn’t going to actually be in these Egyptian texts, but the Sky Boat of Ra will be (naturally).  The responder is linkng the two . . . on the basis of . . . what?  Do the EGYPTIANS (perish the thought) actually tell us THEY made such an identification?  If so, where?  We want primary source data, not guesses.  After all, I want to know what the Egyptians thought and saw, not what someone today might wish or assume they saw after reading Sitchin.  Anyway, this connection pure assumption, and has nothing to do with the “real” nibiru – the one the Mesopotamians wrote about.  How do I know the responder is relying on assumption and imagination here? Because of the response says emphatically that nibiru could not be a planet.  The responder also wonders where the “translation confusion” occurred. There is no confusion, since Mesopotamian astrolabes associate Jupiter (and once Mercury) with the term nibiru.  For the citations, see the third page of the PDF, #3 on the lefthand side.  We at least know the Mesopotamians were describing Jupiter in this association with nibiru since their astrolabes can be correlated with those of the Egyptians and Greeks.  A glaring miscue like not knowing what Jupiter was would be quite obvious.

But let’s be fair (really).  If the responder can produce these citations with the multiple crossings of the SKy Boat of Ra in a single day (as he describes), I will absolutely (public promise!) post them.  I don’t believe nibiru will be in any of the texts (I’ll check, since I’ve had several years of Egyptian grammar and I have the hieroglyphic texts of the Book of the Dead). But even if the word isn’t there, the citations may prove very interesting, since multiple crossings within a day’s time would be odd for the sun!  Something else would be behind such references, and so we may have something of note there.  Hope we get to see.

Did the Egyptians Need Alien Technology to Build the Pyramids?

No. There are a number of interesting theories as to how the Egyptians could move the stones of the pyramids vertically and from the place they were quarried. The coolest involves simple physics. Check out the website (with video) of this retired construction worker from Michigan. It’s amazing how this guy moves multi-ton stones by himself. Yeah, I bought his CD, too, so I could watch the full videos. You should, too, if you want to ward off the alien astronaut crowd (“Nobody I know could have thought of this technology, so it must be aliens”). Yeah.