Wednesday, September 26, 2007



Apologies for the audio on this one, we were seriously let down in terms of bandwidth from Skype on the night of the recording. It's cleaned up as much as we could and we feel it is quite listenable.

In orthodox academic circles, Atlantis is the ‘A’ word. If that terrifying word is uttered, academic ears fill instantly with academic wax and the offending utterer is summarily laughed and/or escorted out of the room.

Nevertheless, Atlantis hunters are legion, and Atlantis believers exponentially legioner.

In PhoenixFire 7 I take a long look at the entire complicated phenomenon. I present an overview of Atlantological history; it’s modern beginnings with Ignatius Donnelly’s ATLANTIS: The Antediluvian World, a vast volume of scholarship first printed in 1888, an instant best-seller, and in print ever since. I then look mainly at the astonishing number of claimants to Atlantis. These, among others, range from the Atlantic Ocean of course, to both the poles, Cypress, Spain, the Altiplano of Peru/Bolivia (believe it or not), and the Caribbean Sea. .

I look closely at Plato’s story, detailed in his Dialogues. For this is the tale that sent Donnelly on his initial search and a scholarly cottage industry was born. With immense advances in all sorts of underwater exploring techniques and excavating equipment besides, it shows no signs of abating.

However, despite the widespread locations trumpeted by adherents as THE Atlantis, all geographical candidates share one premise in common: a strictly literal acceptance of the complex and extraordinarily detailed physical description Plato provides for the huge, rich, aggressive and ultimately decadent civilization that sank to the bottom of the ocean in a single catastrophic day.

At the same time all Atlantologists practice one scholarly dodge in common: when the favored site diverges in some major way (size of site, place of site, age of site, etc) from Plato’s account –and without exception, all do- those divergences are fudged away and/or ignored. Nothing found and loudly proclaimed so far really matches Plato’s tale with anything resembling precision. In other words none of the candidates auditioning for the role actually qualify for it.

So is Plato’s account merely a fabrication? And if so, to what end? Why should he go to all that trouble? Just to confound researchers who will not show up for another two thousand years? It doesn’t make sense. And, along the same lines, are all those avid Atlantologists therefore deluding themselves, and their audiences while they’re at it; not so much barking up the wrong tree, as paddling aimlessly around the wrong ocean?

Definitive answer: yes and no, but it’s complicated. What isn’t?

There is an extraordinary, little-known and erudite book written and published some thirty years ago that, if heeded, without exactly nullifying the Atlantological premise could change the direction of inquiry in radical but fruitful ways.

Musicologist Ernest G. McClain's THE PYTHAGOREAN PLATO decodes the 'A' word as an elaborate musical allegory.


Wednesday, September 12, 2007


Apologies to all who have been waiting for PhoenixFire 7. I have been extremely busy lately, but we aim to record it next week.
Thanks for your patience.

Thursday, June 14, 2007



"Atlantis here! Atlantis there! Atlantis Everywhere"

Monday, April 30, 2007


Son of Mystery of the Sphinx, Part 4,

The Book of Boris, Chapter 2.

Get Mystery of the Sphinx from Amazon US or Amazon UK.

…begins to sound almost like Quackademic Scholarship, doesn’t it? All that’s missing are unreadable, microscopic footnotes, meaningless or irrelevant references, a 90 page inflated, Big Think bibliography and an index… anyway…sorry for the delay in getting this show completed.

Here we conclude our Son of Mystery of the Sphinx saga, initially intended as a single episode telling the long, convoluted, often frustrating, sometimes amusing, but always eventful history of the Sphinx Theory.

But what happened was that once the mnemonic buttons were pressed, long submerged material deposited in the Long Term Memory Bank over two and half decades surfaced; one thing led to another, and, voila!, we ended up with four shows. Yet, even these were compressed. At the end of each show, I’d suddenly remember all sorts of relevant things that hadn’t found their way into my pre-prepared rough outline (intended initially to keep me –as is my wont- from wandering so far off the appointed topic that I’d never find my way back). This might not have been such a bad thing, actually! I might have needed another couple of shows just to incorporate those belatedly-recalled stories, and this way I can save them for the book that will ultimately come out of all this. I hope.

So… in this, our concluding SOMS chapter, we return to Boris and his endless criminal-cum-sociopathic shenanigans, his whopping lies, his sabotage, his temper, his ceaseless energy, his charisma at crucial times, his raw humor…the whole mixed psychological bag that was Boris, but never forgetting for a moment that without him there would be no Mystery of the Sphinx story to tell.

There are, however, no saving graces attending an underhanded attempt to steal our decades of painstaking research from us and claim the (un)discovery of the Hall of Records for themselves. There are a few anecdotes about a handful of irresponsible and highly unprofessional journalistic jackals trashing our Sphinx Theory without ever looking at our evidence or consulting us for our side of the controversy. There’s the bizarre, maybe miraculous, d├ętente and ultimate personal reconciliation with the fiery and redoubtable Zahi Hawass; the plan for our Geo-Panel which we hope will settle this question of water weathering once and for all, and much else besides…

Finally, I mention early in this podcast, the CPAK conference, click here for more information.


Thursday, April 19, 2007


Sorry about the delay with PhoenixFire 6,I have been in Egypt and Brazil, we should be recording the show on the 22nd of April, and it should be posted by the 24th.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007


Here's a promo for my tours that we just shot in Egypt during March 2007.


Thursday, March 22, 2007


PhoenixFire 6 will be delayed until about the third week in April due to my travel commitments.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007


Son of Mystery of the Sphinx, part 3.

The book of Boris.

RIP. Boris Said.
My ex-partner (and ex-friend) Boris Said died on March 24, 2002 of liver cancer, aged sixty-nine. Those on this list who have been following the long, convoluted progress of the Sphinx theory and all that relates to it may be familiar with Boris's name and with his role in producing our video, MYSTERY OF THE SPHINX. Without that video, the theory and all the rest would be relegated to a distant back burner on an obscure stove somewhere. Boris's name and his memory are tied in my mind inextricably to that project.

Those who met Boris at any time over the course of his 69 years, even briefly, probably will not have forgotten him; physically powerful, radiating an almost superhuman, high octane intensity, with a quick, coarse humor and and even quicker, coarser temper, infinitely resourceful especially when his back was to the wall -- which it usually was, since he found ways to make sure that's where it stayed. Boris Said (pronounced Sa-yeed - half Russian, half Persian) was a memorable, unique (well, we are all unique, but some are more unique than others) larger-than-life character, ex-race driver (Ferrari/Porsche -- sports cars, never made Formula driving) ex-Captain of the U.S. Olympic Bobsled team, absolutely fearless; a man of endless anecdotes, endlessly dreaming up admirable projects, indefatigably organizing film crews, support, sponsors, finances and then, almost as if programmed, finding ways to sabotage these projects just prior to completion, bringing everyone involved down with the ship, including himself. As self-destructive as he was destructive, Boris made many enemies; and unfortunately kept but few friends.

One of these days, in the multi-volume autobiography I work on sporadically, the Book of Boris section will be vivid reading, and it won't be brief. I do not know exactly who or what the demon was that drove him, but driven he was, only very rarely arriving at his chosen destination. There was a memorial service for him in New York, attended, I'm told, by a couple of dozen people he'd somehow managed not to alienate. I wasn't included in the invitation list; perhaps because it was feared I might stand up and say pretty much what I'm saying here, and I would have, so this was a wise decision. (I can never understand this custom of eulogizing people at death no matter what their faults may have been or how much havoc they may have caused in life. What's the point? Is the ka of the deceased hovering about, and hearing everyone spouting a lot of well-intentioned baloney, it says to itself: Gee, I guess I wasn't such a louse after all? This is not esoteric philosophy as I understand it!)

Why not just tell it as you see it; the good and the ill?) In this case, while others might have been at that service largely because they'd never actually been burnt by Boris, I might have been the only person there who had something specific to be actively grateful to him for, and so might have made a unique contribution to the gathering.

MYSTERY OF THE SPHINX was, I think, the only one of Boris's many projects that made it to completion and a showing. Without him that video would not have been produced or launched. At the same time, it was only through the concerted efforts of the rest of our crew, realizing along the line how destructive and divisive he was and uniting to prevent him from scuttling it before it was complete, that we managed to rescue it. It was a hair's breadth escape at that. Later we learned he'd managed to plunder close to $150,000 out of the till along the way. So, successful as the show was, (one of the most successful documentaries ever made) it ended up, and to this day remains, deep in the red.

But MYSTERY OF THE SPHINX is not just another documentary. A financial debacle it was, certainly; but much more than finance is at stake in terms of science, scholarship, the history and possibly even the future of human civilization itself. If our Sphinx theory is endorsed by the geology panel we intend to bring to Egypt in the near term future, and if that produces the desired impact, forcing a radical rewriting across a spectrum of disciplines, Boris will have played a key, unique and absolutely essential role in that process. Nobody else could have or would have done what he did. Without him there would be nothing.

I do not know if plea bargaining is allowed in the Great Court of Osiris, but if it is, I like to think that his role in making this show happen, thereby generating all that followed...(and that is yet to come) will be placed on the feather-side of Ma'at's balance. For the heart side, I suspect, will not be light.

While we were working on the show, before relations got edgy, and long before I realized the extent of the wholesale financial plunder, Boris started calling me Pharoah (a role I was never very comfortable with! Royal Scribe, maybe, OK. But Pharoah? No ... not my style.) Anyway, I retaliated by calling him 'General' for which he was, at least in principle, much better suited. I can think of nothing Boris would like less in death than to have people wish him: Rest in Peace!

My own posthumous message would be: No, don't rest in peace. Charge!!! But this time, if you're given another chance on that battlefield, train your weapons on the enemy! Not on your own troops and yourself! Understood?

Adios, General!


Wednesday, February 21, 2007


Son of Mystery of the Sphinx, part 2.

When I began this Son of Mystery of the Sphinx program I knew that there were considerable mnemonic funds squirreled away in the Long Term Memory Bank but I had never really tried to tally up the balance sheet. As it turned out there is a treasure trove of detail there, a saga Hollywoodian in its complexity, with embittered opposing scholarly factions, academic, journalistic and financial skullduggery aplenty, a bizarre tapestry of interwoven plot threads, a cast of improbable characters Central Casting would be proud of …

What was intended as a single program has now stretched to two … with, I now realize to my own astonishment, still more to come.

In this thrilling episode we enlist the services of the NYPD’s chief forensic detective Frank Domingo, to question a highly questionable but hitherto largely unquestioned Egyptological assertion; our presentation at the Geological Society of America’s Annual Meeting produces media fireworks, international headlines and academic sparks that quickly fan into flames…and more…


Sunday, February 18, 2007

Debunking the debunkers

Adrastus writes in Thothweb

>I remember in a class I took with Kent Weeks, back in the early 90's (before he spent all his time on KV5) someone asked him about John Anthony West. Without missing a beat, Doc Weeks said "John Anthony West? What can I say? He's not a real Egyptologist...His methods are sloppy, his ideas are ludicrous, and his mother dresses him funny."
We all had a great laugh about that.<

Jaw responds

>Without missing a beat, Doc Weeks said "John Anthony West? What can I say? He's not a real Egyptologist..<

Correct; I am not a ‘real’ Egyptologist. That is why I know something.

The ‘real’ Egyptologists (with a very few exceptions, Weeks not among them) spend their time arguing over how many asps killed Cleopatra* or, like Doc Weeks, scrabble around on their knees (apposite position) in the dust of yet another meaningless tomb, sifting rubble and eventually publishing a meaningless book or meaningless paper of zero interest or significance to anyone. **

*Serpent in the Sky, p.9, margin note.
**cf., a list of abstracts of any Egyptological conference anywhere in the world.

>His methods are sloppy, his ideas are ludicrous,<

Without examples or citations it is impossible to address the charge of sloppiness, but no examples are needed to address ‘ludicrous’.

If Doc Weeks is talking about my work on the water-weathering of the Sphinx and the need to drastically redate it, it should be enough to say that at two separate Annual Meetings of the Geological Society of America (1991, 2000) the overwhelming, indeed, near unanimous reaction of hundreds of professional geologists was that our evidence looked very convincing indeed. The word ‘sloppy’ was never used, nor did anyone shout ‘ludicrous’.

I should also like to point out here, or re-point out (as George Bernard Shaw liked to say, ‘I always quote myself. It adds spice to the conversation.’) the argument about the Sphinx is based upon weathering patterns in rock, plain and simple, and when it comes to opinions about weathering patterns in rocks, an Egyptologist’s opinion is no better than a proctologist’s.

If ‘ludicrous’ refers to the ‘Symbolist’ interpretation of Egypt that I champion, as developed by R.A. Schwaller de Lubicz, well, that is another matter; one not to be solved by ‘hard’ science as such but rather supported by a corpus of meticulously accumulated and detailed factual documentation.

Thereafter, what is required is an ability to accurately interpret those facts. This is where ‘real’ Egyptologists like Doc Weeks find themselves in uncharted and, for them, scary territory. Their reaction to this work is, however, perfectly understandable.

The Tao Te Ching (google it up, Adrastus) summarizes the situation well.

‘When the best student is taught the Tao, he practices it assiduously.

When the average student is taught the Tao it seems to him there one moment and gone the next.

When the worst student is taught the Tao, he laughs out loud; if he did not laugh, it would be unworthy of being the Tao.’

Or put another way; it is futile to talk moonbeams to the blind, or music to the deaf, and dangerous to talk sex to eunuchs, they just get angry, sometimes violent.

BTW, I note that the career of the legendary Adrastus was marked chiefly by a succession of failures; certainly a well-chosen pseudonym.

>‘…and his mother dresses him funny ‘ We all had a great laugh about that’<

I trust you’re still laughing.

John Anthony West

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.


Wednesday, January 31, 2007


A response to iDoubt's post on the latest research on lunar effects on life.

Independent article.

iDoubt's blog.

JAW's response:

>I’m quite the stickler for getting facts correct. <

No, you’re not. You’re not a stickler at all. Two paragraphs from this opening statement you bitch about ‘no citations’. The story you refer to was in the English ‘Independent’. Mainstream newspapers, even relatively responsible papers like the Independent, are not in the habit of providing ‘citations’. If you were a ‘stickler for getting facts correct’ you would contact the Independent, and get the sources used for the article instead of attacking research you, in fact, know nothing about. .

>There was a recent story out of London regarding new research that suggested the effect was again measured. Well, shut my mouth and call me skeptical, once again — I don’t buy it. I take exception to the subtitle that says “At last, scientists claim to have found a link between our satellite and human behaviour”<

Nobody calls you ‘skeptical’. You are a debunker. You have not read the research cited; you have not tried to acquire it – the simplest matter in the world, a phone call or email would get it for you. Yet there you are ‘taking exception’ when in fact you know nothing.

But you have good reason to respond to that article. When a paper as mainstream, un-New-
Agey and unsensationalistic as the Independent publishes a serious research-based article demonstrating lunar effect upon human behavior, it means that the atmosphere must be getting really hot, seriously hot, deep down under the rock where your Debunker Bunker is built.

>The news story mentions “recent” research but I haven’t found the citations. (If someone has them, I’d appreciate the info.)

You haven’t looked. If you’re a ‘stickler for getting facts correct’ the first thing you do is look for the alleged facts instead of just shooting your mouth off while waiting for someone to provide you with them.

>I did find a plethora of studies that have examined lunar cycle. Here are a few attempted correlations:
post operative nausea and vomiting
patient falls
admissions for gastrointestinal bleeding
surgery quality – complications, pain perception
stock returns
requests for appointments to a thyroid clinic
broodmare fertility
seizure occurrences
assisted reproduction conception rates
along with the frequently cited connection with suicides, emergency calls, births, etc.
Here’s the bottom line. For every positive correlation, you can find a negative one.< (my itals – jaw)

That’s not a ‘bottom line’ at all; it’s an asinine objection to begin with and actually, statistically, it furnishes conclusive proof of the validity of the effects of the moon.

If 50% of the studies undertaken provide positive results, that conclusion, (especially if subjected to Bayesian analysis) amounts to overwhelming proof of the validity of a lunar effect. Got it? No, silly question. Of course you don’t.

>Color me doubtful because researchers have a lot more ’splaining to do before I’m convinced.

This is an insistent and tiresome refrain\ ‘If they want to convince skeptics…’ Debunkers seem to think that those of us who oppose them want to ‘convince’ them. We don’t. Nobody really gives a damn what you think.

We recognize that you are psychically, emotionally and spiritually diseased and probably incurable (short of experiencing an NLE – Near Life Experience).

Through a combination of solid scientific evidence, argument and ridicule we want to prevent you from spreading even further your grotesque materialistic doctrine of meaninglessness, emptiness and despair (all in the name of ‘Reason’ and ‘Science’ of course).

In short, we want to put you to sleep (not physically of course, though I confess that would not disturb me, personally) as humanely as possible, just as we do with rabid dogs. We don’t want to ‘convince’ you about anything; we know that is impossible; we just want to prevent you from infecting everyone else. Comprende?

>Kelly, I.W., James Rotton, and Roger Culver. “The Moon was Full and Nothing Happened: A Review of Studies on the Moon and Human Behavior and Human Belief,” in J. Nickell, B. Karr and T. Genoni, eds., The Outer Edge (Amherst, N.Y.: CSICOP, 1996). Older versions of this article appeared in the Skeptical Inquirer Winter 1985-86 (vol. 10, no. 2) and in The Hundredth Monkey and Other Paradigms of the Paranormal, edited by Kendrick Frazier (Buffalo, N.Y.: Prometheus Books, 1991), pp. 222-234.<

You might enjoy my analysis of Culver and Ianna’s book THE GEMINI SYNDROME in my own book, THE CASE FOR ASTROLOGY, Viking Arkana 1991.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


Symbolist Egypt - the Meaning Behind the Magic.

The magisterial reinterpretation of ancient Egypt developed by R.A. Schwaller de Lubicz (the genius with the unpronouncable name) gives us access to the ancient Egypt of the Egyptians, as opposed to the Egypt of the Egyptologists.

Where the latter see architecturally/artistically talented 'primitives' (compared to ourselves, of course) at work, Schwaller sees, and demonstrates, a prodigious Sacred Science - a science of cosmic principles. What is a 'Cosmic Principle'? That's what we talk about.

At stake is not a vapid quibble between warring academic opinions but rather a total revision and reconsideration of everything we thought we knew about our own human past: who knew what, and when, and why does it matter?

In PhoenixFire 2 we scratch as far below the surface as time allows, but there will be much more, and in more detail, as we go along. Stay tuned.

Saturday, January 13, 2007


Watch a trail of John Anthony West's 8 DVD set called Magical Egypt, created by film maker Chance Gardner, this will give you a small overview of the content of Phoenixfire 2, Symbolist Egypt. Due to the quirkyness of YouTube embedded files, we recommend that after you have pressed play, you pause it and wait a minute or two for some of the stream to download (progressive red bar!), and then press play, otherwise playback is continuously interrupted, we wish this could be sorted out!
The video is just under 10 minutes.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007


Welcome to the conflagration!

In this, our maiden and necessarily exploratory episode, we test (if you will pardon the mixed metaphor) the PhoenixFire waters. We list (still provisional) titles of the programs that will take us through the next few months. They are, we hope, sufficiently self-explanatory to convey a preliminary sense of our interests, our aims, who we are and where we stand. And we’ve chosen a representative mix from our menu to talk about in some detail; effectively providing trailers for features to come. If it all sounds appetizing, stay tuned.


Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Starting the New Year I will have my own weekly streamed radio program. For more preview info go to

Egypt, of course, will be a central subject, in much more depth than I'm able to get into on normal radio or TV interviews. I'll also be delving into many other topics that I rarely have the opportunity to explore publicly. It should be fun, though with my unalterable talent for disorganization, it may take a few programs to achieve some measure of 'professional' coherence. So, if you tune in from the get-go, be forgiving.

Here's a (provisional) list, not necessarily in this order, of planned programs.

Notes from a Heretic’s Notebook – autobiography

Symbolist Egypt: The Doctrine of the Return to the Source

Darwin Debunked, Darwin De-clawed, Darwin Dethroned (Your Friendly Armchair Anthropologist discusses the Cargo Cult of the West)

Einsteins of Old: Ancient Symbolism/Modern Astrophysics

Son of Mystery of the Sphinx - Geo-panel – the Quest to Rewrite History. Further evidence.

Number – Ancient Key to the Kosmos

Consider the Kali Yuga – Precession of the Equinoxes and the Great Year

Atlantis Here, Atlantis There, Atlantis Damn Near Everywhere.

The Four Cowboys of Apocalypse 2.0: Capitalism, Patriotism, Democracy and Technology

Science, Education and the Media: Jesuits of the Church of Progress

Debunking Debunkery: JAW Taking on the Mind Gestapo and the Paradigm Police

Constructive Destruction and Positive Negation – 3 ways to learn lessons

Standup Metaphysics 3.0: Comedy as a Religious Experience (w/jokes)

The Tomorrow Show with Jerry & John : JAW and Gerald Celente ‘(Trends 2000, Warner Books 1997) discuss what’s likely in store. Maybe weekly as well.