Part I: The Lion and the Hunter
I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert . . . Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lie, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
-Percy Bysshe Shelley, 1818
In the deserts of Egypt, resting upon the Giza plateau, there stands a monument which can be recognized eazily by most any educated human being on the face of the Earth. Part of the Memphite Necropolis, the Pyramids of Egypt stand as an eternal testimony to the tenacity of mankind, and its uncanny ability to perform mind-boggling feats.
There may be, however, more to the Pyramids than initially meets the eye. These gargantuan structures, for time out of mind have acted as a catalyst for man's imagination. Their sheer magnitude is enough to cause one to wonder how a culture so archaic could have tackled such a daunting task. This issue, however, is only the tip of an iceberg at which scientests and historians have only begun to chip away. Recently discovered evidence shows that the Egyptians may have been keen observers not only of the Earth, but of the Cosmos as well.
An exploration of the Pyramids is best begun with an exploration of numbers.
Historians generally hold that the Ancients neither held the belief, or discovered scientifically that the Earth is spherical in shape. Interesting it is to note, then, that if one were to increase the size of the Great Pyramid by 43,200 times, that the perimeter of its base would almost exactly equal the circumference of the Earth at the Equator, and that the distance from the base to the summit would be the the same as that from the Earth's center to the North Pole.1 Simply put, this pyramid would fit exactly into the Northern Hemisphere.
What is more, is that the presence of the value 43,200 is not an arbitrary one. In order to understand the significance of this number, one must not look to the Earth, but to the stars. The wobble of the Earth around its axis causes the stars to appear to move in a slow, circular path in the sky as time passes. This cycle, which takes exactly 25,920 years to come full circle (both literally, that is a rotation of 360 degrees, and figuratively), is known as precession. It follows, then, that a one-degree rotation of the stars in the heavens takes 72 years to complete. Seventy-two is a number common to much art in many ancient cultures, including those of Central America, islands in the South Pacific, and the Hindu and Buddhist shrines of Southeast Asia.2 In the case of the Great Pyramid, the number 43,200 is simply 600 multiplied by 72.3 There are still more instances of seventy-two that can be found within the Pyramids. For example, the King's Chamber housed within the Great Pyramid itself has the number cunningly hid within its dimensions.
The other monument on the Giza Plateau, though certainly no less important than the Pyramids, is the Sphinx. Traditionally attributed to the Fourth Dynasty Pharaoh, Khafre (ruled 2520-2494 B.C.E.), there have been in recent years a number of vociferous and unignorable attacks upon this timeframe for the construction of the Sphinx. Not only are there no inscriptions on or around the monument which connect the monument with Khafre4, but there is evidence presented by Dr Robert Schoch, Professor of Geology at Boston University which shows quite convincingly that the Sphinx itself must have been built some time betwen 15,000 B.C.E. (the end of the last Ice Age) and 5000 B.C.E.5. His methods for choosing these dates are not basted upon conjecture, but upon geological evidence and fact. The erosion patterns which appear on the Sphinx could have been caused only by precipitation-induced weathering after its initial carving. The climate of Egypt in 2500 B.C.E, the type of Khafre, was no less arid than it is today, and the weather that is necessary to create such erosion on the Sphinx would have disappeared from the region sometime before 5000 B.C.E.6
The question now stands: when was the Sphinx actually carved? Once again, one must turn to the stars for a possible answer. The Sphinx, no doubt, is inexorably linked to the image of the lion, both in the modern man's mind, as well as in thoe of the Ancients who created it. It is no coincidence that the Egyptians chose the lion, either, for the Sphinx shares a unique and interesting tie with the constellation Leo in the night sky. The Sphinx faces due East, toward the rising sun on the Vernal Equinox (March 21). Due to the influence of precession, the constellation, too, once held its place in the Eastern sky along with the rising sun. Interestingly enough, we know the exact date on which Leo hung low in the sky, due east -- and that was just before sunrise on March 21, 10,500 BCE. This date fits almost perfectly with the timeframe given by Schoch for the carving of the Sphinx, and it is no mere happenstance that this date is eerily echoed in the Pyramids which loom like giants to the west.
Just as the Sphinx is meant to represent the constellation Leo upon the ground, so too are the Pyramids meant to represent their own constellation: Orion. The layout of the Pyramids mirrors exactly the formation of the three stars which Orion's Belt comprises, and the constellation of Orion reached its highest point in the sky on, you guessed it, March 21, 10,500 BC.7
Indeed, the Ancient Egyptians were no doubt constructing a mirror of the Heavens on the Earth. Indeed, the significance of 10,500 BCE to these people seems apparent. Things, however, become even more uncanny as we turn our eyes Eastward...
Part II: The Serpent in the Sky
Ankor-on top of the terrace
in a stone nook in the rain
Avelokitesvera faces everywhere
high in their stonyness
in white rainmist
Slithering hitherward paranoia
high muscled tree crawled
over the roof its big
long snakey toes spread
down the lintel's red
Buddha I take my refuge
bowing in the black bower
before the openhanded lotus-man
-Allen Ginsberg. June 10, 1963. Siemreip, Cambodia.
In the jungles of Cambodia, seemingly sealed off from the rest of the world, there lies a complex of Temples erected between 802 CE and 1220 CE known as Angkor Wat. These temples, built by both Hindu and Buddhist rulers of Cambodia known as the Khmer monarchs, are massive in size and, like the Pyramids of Egypt, a lasting testament to the tenacity of men.
Oddly enough, while the name Angkor is said to be a corruption of the Sanskrit word nagara, meaning 'town', the word Angkor has a very precise meaning in the language of the ancient Egyptians: 'Horus Lives'. While probably coincidence, as the Khmer people certainly did not worship the gods of the Egyptians, there is the added fact that Angkor Wat lies exactly seventy-two (72!) degrees longitude east of the Giza plateau, which itself lies exactly halfway between the Equator and the North Pole.8
Indeed, there is yet another item mysteriously linking these two monuments, seperated by two thousand years and twice as many kilometers. Angkor Wat, too, echoes the stars in its construction. The temple complex itself, and several others which sprawl across the jungle like a giant, winding snake, matches almost exactly the serpent in the sky: the constellation Draco. Each temple has its counterpart in a star in Draco, just as the three Pyramids of Giza each corresponded to one of the three stars of Orion's Belt.9
At first glance, however, the link is somewhat awkward, due to the fact that Draco, as it looks today, is inverted, compared to the locations of the temples. It seems almost as if the temples were a backwards representation of the constellation. Upon closer examination, however, ther comes a revelation which is both startling and intriguing. Remembering precession, Draco moves along with all of the other stars as they make their 25,920 year trek across the sky. If one were to calculate the date and time of when Draco would have been right-side-up in the sky, that is, so it matched the temples of Angkor Wat, the answer is almost Earth-shattering in its implications.
That date is just before sunrise on March 21, 10,500 BC.
What exactly this means, nobody can say for certain. What can be said, however, is that the myths which are illustrated upon the walls of Angkor Wat bear a remarkable resemblance to those of Ancient Egypt. What can be said is that nearly all who have visited both Angkor Wat and the Pyramids say that the Asian temples have a disctinct Egyptian "feel" to them. What can be said, is that there comes a time when similarities can no longer be blamed upon flukes and coincidences.
History is subjective, no matter how hard mankind struggles against this fact. It is as such because we, as human beings, are incapable of presenting an entirely unbiased account of anything. If our reports are not skewed by preconceptions, then they are slanted by our cultural background and upbringing, or any number of other factors to who we are as individuals.
Just as established Egyptologists are reluctant to accept different perspectives, so too might new names in the field by too cavalier and eager to challenge accepted belief.
Nobody can say for certain what significance the year of 10,500 BC has, if any, nor can anyone without uncertainty prove or disprove a connection between Giza and Angkor Wat.
The purpose of this node, in addition to simple self-education, is to present a message. That message is this: the world is infinitely more complex that we percieve, and simply because an idea is generally accepted does not make it correct.
Keep your feet on the ground, but your eyes on the stars.
- Hancock, Graham. Heaven's Mirror. Three Rivers Press, New York. 1998. p48.
- De Santillana, Giorgia. Hamlet's Mill. 1969. p58.
- Heaven's Mirror. p49.
- Hassan, Selim. The Sphinx: Its History in the Light of Recent Excavations. Government Press, Cairo. 1949. p91.
- Interview of Schoch: Hancock, Graham. Fingerprints of the Gods. Three Rivers Press, New York. 1995. pp447-8.
- Heaven's Mirror. p93.
- Bauval, Robert & Gilbert, Adrian. The Orion Mystery: Unlocking the Secrets of the Pyramids. Three Rivers Press, New York. 1994. pp23-4.
- Heaven's Mirror. pp116-119.
- Heaven's Mirror. p125.