Monday, February 5, 2007


Son of Mystery of the Sphinx, part 1. The Geo-panel and the quest to rewrite history.

The true age of the Great Sphinx of Giza may seem like an academic question, to be discussed among academics. The answer would seem to have little to do with the price of eggs, or of gasoline, for that matter. Why should we care?

Central to our reigning and entrenched Church of Progress is the unshakeable conviction that we of the 21st Century, represent the highest (read ‘most evolved’) specimens of humanity ever to have accidentally mutated through 'a series of lucky coincidences' (in the immortal words of Daniel Dennett) on this planet.

But the Great Sphinx is beyond doubt the most spectacular single sculpture ever produced by human beings and the temples adjacent to it are the result of an astounding technology that we cannot emulate today, not even with the most advanced moving equipment at our disposal. In other words, we don’t know how they did it – a fact carefully avoided in the hallowed Groves of Quackademe.

Even in its standard chronology (supposedly carved around 2500BC) the Great Sphinx stands (or rather rests magnificently recumbent) as an enigma –maybe that’s why the much later Greeks had the idea to use the Sphinx (in a variant of their own) as the embodiment of mysteriousness and inscrutability: in their famous Riddle of the Sphinx.

But if the Sphinx is much older, by untold thousands of years, than its accepted attribution, that in and of itself throws the whole notion of Progress (as a perhaps disorderly but nevertheless inevitable linear process leading from the primitives of the past to our advanced technological selves) into serious, perhaps terminal disarray.

In PhoenixFire 3, I tell the tale of the quest, now some 40 years in the making. Through a set of odd coincidences I'm put in touch with Boston Geologist Robert M. Schoch. Initially skeptical, Schoch eventually becomes convinced the water weathering theory is correct, and puts his tenured neck on the block to promote it. Between us we set out to unriddle the Sphinx and in the process eventually force a drastic revision of all of very ancient history and with it - perhaps even more importantly - of the standard and accepted account of the development and evolution of human civilization . We are not who or what we think we are and it may be a matter of critical consequence to understand who we really are, and who we really once were.

While even this will not directly affect the price of eggs or gasoline, it might, with luck, oblige us to look upon such merely economic matters in a new and very different qualitative light.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to hear next show. It just fascinates and spoils my imagination. Thank you John!