21 janvier 2018

Immanuel Velikovsky, Worlds in Collision (note de lectura)

First published in 1950
The historical-cosmological story of this book is based on the evidence of historical texts of  many peoples around the globe, on classical literature, on epics of northern races, on sacred
books of the peoples of the Orient and Occident, on traditions and folklore of primitive peoples,
on old astronomical inscriptions and charts, on archaeological finds, and also on geological and
paleontological material.

Chapter I. In an Immense Universe
Homo ignoramus:
- he does not know what life is
- he does not know whether other planets of this sun or of other suns have life on them
- he does not know how this solar system came into being
- he does not know what this mysterious force of gravitation is
- he does not know what the earth looks like five miles under his feet
- he does not know how mountains came into existence or what caused the emergence of the continents
- he does not know why, only a short time ago, a thick glacial sheet pressed upon most of Europe and North America
- he does not know where the salt in the sea came from

What caused the legend of the Flood to originate in all the countries of the world?

The Celestial Harmony
The sun rises in the east and sets in the west. The day consists of twenty-four hours. The year
consists of 365 days, 5 hours, and 49 minutes. The moon circles around the earth, changing its
phases-crescent, full, decrescent. The terrestrial axis points in the direction of the polar star.
After winter comes spring, then summer and fall. These are common facts. Are they invariable
laws? Must it be so forever? Was it so always?
It is not a general law for all planets that winter must follow fall and summer the spring.
It is not a general law that a planet must have atmosphere or water.

The Origin of the Planetary System
All theories of the origin of the planetary system and the motive forces that sustain the motion of its members go back to the gravitational theory and the celestial mechanics of Newton.
It appears to be clearly established that, whatever structure we assign to a primitive sun, a
planetary system cannot come into being merely as the result of the sun's rotation. If a sun,
rotating alone in space, is not able of itself to produce its family of planets and satellites, it
becomes necessary to invoke the presence and assistance of some second body.
The nebular and tidal theories alike regard the planets as derivatives of the sun, and the satellites as derivatives of the planets.
Argument against the Laplace theory: A rotating nebula could not produce satellites revolving in two directions.

The Origin of the Comets
The nebular and tidal theories endeavor to explain the origin of the solar system but do not
include the comets in their schemes.
Did the sun emit planets by shrinkage or by tide, and comets by explosion? Did the comets come
from interstellar space and were they captured into the solar system by larger planets? Did the
larger planets produce the smaller planets by cleavage, or did they expel the short-period comets
from their bodies?
It is admitted that we cannot know the truth about the origin of the planetary and cometary
systems billions of years ago.

Chapter 2. The Planet Earth
The inner composition of the earth is not known.
The water of the oceans contains a large amount of soluble sodium chloride, common salt.
Sodium might have come from rocks eroded by rain; but rocks are poor in chlorine and the
proportion of sodium and chlorine in sea water calls for fifty times more chlorine in the igneous
rock than it actually contains.
Cuvier thought that great catastrophes had taken place on this earth, repeatedly changing sea
beds into continents and continents into sea beds.
Cuvier's theory of stabilized forms of life and of annihilating catastrophes was supplanted by a
theory of evolution in geology (Lyell) and biology (Darwin).
The theory of evolution, which can be traced
to Aristotle, and which was the teaching of Lamarck in the days of Cuvier and of Darwin after
him, has been generally accepted as truth by natural sciences for almost a hundred years.
Human remains and human artifacts of bone, polished stone, or pottery are found under great
deposits of till and gravel, sometimes under as much as a hundred feet.

Ice Ages
The problem of mountain-making is a vexing one.
Ice lay not only on the slopes of high mountains, but loaded itself in heavy masses upon
continents even in moderate latitudes. Where today the Hudson, the Elbe, and the upper Dnieper flow, there were then frozen deserts. They were like the immense glacier of Greenland that covers that island.
This requires an increased amount of water vapor in the atmosphere, which is the result of
increased evaporation from the surface of oceans; but this could be caused by heat only. A number of scientists pointed out this fact, and even calculated that in order to produce a sheet of ice as large as that of the Ice Age, the surface of all the oceans must have evaporated to a depth of many feet. Such an evaporation of oceans followed by a quick process of freezing, even in moderate latitudes, would have produced the ice ages. The problem is: What could have caused the evaporation and immediately subsequent freezing?
Glaciers are formed in the regions of eternal snow; for this reason they remain on the slopes of
the high mountains. The north of Siberia is the coldest place in the world. Why did not the Ice
Age touch this region, whereas it visited the basin of the Mississippi and all Africa south of the
equator? No satisfactory solution to this question has been proposed.

The Mammoths
The extinction of the mammoth is thought to have coincided with the end of the last glacial period.
The theory of repeated catastrophes annihilating life on this planet and repeated creations or
restorations of life, offered by Deluc and expanded by Cuvier, did not convince the scientific
Darwin admitted that he was unable to find an explanation for the extermination of the
mammoth, an animal better developed than the elephant which survived.

The Ice Age and the Antiquity of Man
The mammoth lived in the age of man. Man pictured it on the walls of caves.
Man moved southward when Europe was covered with ice and returned when the ice retreated.
Historical man witnessed great variation in climate.
It is presumed that the neolithic man of Europe left pictures but no inscriptions, and consequently there are no means of determining the end of the Ice Age in terms of chronology.

The World Ages
A conception of ages that were brought to their end by violent changes in nature is common all
over the world. The number of ages differs from people to people and from tradition to tradition.
In the annals of ancient Etruria, according to Varro, were records of seven elapsed ages.
The Greeks had similar traditions.
Hesiod, one of the earliest Greek authors, wrote about four ages and four generations of men that were destroyed by the wrath of the planetary gods.
The sacred Hindu book Bhagavata Purana tells of four ages and of pralayas or cataclysms in
which, in various epochs, mankind was nearly destroyed; the fifth age is that of the present. The world ages are called Kalpas or Yugas. Each world age met its destruction in catastrophes of
conflagration, flood, and hurricane.
Reference to ages and catastrophes is found in Avesta (Zend-Avesta), the sacred scriptures of
Mazdaism, the ancient religion of the Persians.
The Chinese call the perished ages kis and number ten kis from the beginning of the world until
An old tradition, and a very persistent one, of world ages that went down in cosmic catastrophes was found in the Americas among the Incas, the Aztecs, and the Mayas. A major part of stone inscriptions found in Yucatan refer to world catastrophes.
A tradition of successive creations and catastrophes is found in the Pacific—on Hawaii17 and on
the islands of Polynesia: there were nine ages and in each age a different sky was above the
earth. Icelanders, too, believed that nine worlds went down in a succession of ages, a tradition
that is contained in the Edda.
The rabbinical conception of ages crystallized in the post-Exilic period.

The Sun Ages
An oft-repeated occurrence in the traditions of the world ages is the advent of a new sun in the
sky at the beginning of every age. The word "sun" is substituted for the word "age" in the
cosmogonical traditions of many peoples all over the world.
The Mayas counted their ages by the names of their consecutive suns. These were called Water
Sun, Earthquake Sun, Hurricane Sun, Fire Sun.
The aborigines of British North Borneo, even today, declare that the sky was originally low, and
that six suns perished, and at present the world is illuminated by the seventh sun.

Part I
Chapter I. The Most Incredible Story
Joshua ben Nun implored the sun and the moon to stand still. This could have happened if the earth had ceased for a time to roll along its prescribed path. Is such a disturbance conceivable?
A torrent of large stones coming from the sky, an earthquake, a whirlwind, a disturbance in the
movement of the earth—these four phenomena belong together. It appears that a large comet
must have passed very near to our planet and disrupted its movement; a part of the stones
dispersed in the neck and tail of the comet smote the surface of our earth a shattering blow.

On the Other Side of the Ocean
In the Mexican Annals of Cuauhtitlan —the history of the empire of Culhuacan and Mexico,
written in Nahua-Indian in the sixteenth century—it is related that during a cosmic catastrophe
that occurred in the remote past, the night did not end for a long time.
We could follow a path around the earth and inquire into the various traditions concerning the
prolonged night and prolonged day, with sun and moon absent or tarrying at different points
along the zodiac, while the earth underwent a bombardment of stones in a world ablaze. But we must postpone this journey. There was more than one catastrophe when, according to the
memory of mankind, the earth refused to play the chronometer by undisturbed rotation on its

Chapter 2. Fifty-two Years Earlier
THE PRE-COLUMBIAN written traditions of Central America tell us that fifty-two years before
the catastrophe that closely resembles that of the time of Joshua, another catastrophe of world
dimensions had occurred.

The Red World
In the middle of the second millennium before the present era, as I intend to show, the earth
underwent one of the greatest catastrophes in its history. A celestial body that only shortly before had become a member of the solar system—a new comet—came very close to the earth. The account of this catastrophe can be reconstructed from evidence supplied by a large number of documents.
One of the first visible signs of this encounter was the reddening of the earth's surface by a fine
dust of rusty pigment.
The phenomenon of "blood" raining from the sky has also been observed in limited areas and on a small scale in more recent times.

The Hail of Stones
The Mexican Annals of Cuauhtitlan describe how a cosmic catastrophe was accompanied by a
hail of stones; in the oral tradition of the Indians, too, the motif is repeated time and again: In
some ancient epoch the sky "rained, not water, but fire and red-hot stones," which is not
different from the Hebrew tradition.

The main theories of the origin of petroleum are:
1. The inorganic theory: Hydrogen and carbon were brought together in the rock formations of
the earth under great heat and pressure.
2. The organic theory: Both the hydrogen and carbon which compose petroleum come from the
remains of plant and animal life, in the main from microscopic marine and swamp life.
The tails of comets are composed mainly of carbon and hydrogen gases. Lacking oxygen, they
do not burn in flight, but the inflammable gases, passing through an atmosphere containing
oxygen, will be set on fire. If carbon and hydrogen gases, or vapor of a composition of these two elements, enter the atmosphere in huge masses, a part of them will burn, binding all the oxygen available at the moment; the rest will escape combustion, but in swift transition will become liquid. Falling on the ground, the substance, if liquid, would sink into the pores of the sand and into clefts between the rocks; falling on water, it would remain floating if the fire in the air is extinguished before new supplies of oxygen arrive from other regions.
The story of the wandering in the desert contains a number of references to fire springing out of the earth.

The Darkness
If "the Egyptian darkness" was caused by the earth's stasis or tilting of its axis, and was aggravated by a thin cinder dust from the comet, then the entire globe must have suffered from the effect of these two concurring phenomena; in either the eastern or the western parts of the world there must have been a very extended, gloomy day. Nations and tribes in many places of the globe, to the south, to the north, and to the west of Egypt, have old traditions about a cosmic catastrophe during which the sun did not shine; but in some parts of the world the traditions maintain that the sun did not set for a period of time equal to a few days.

The earth, forced out of its regular motion, reacted to the close approach of the body of the  comet: a major shock convulsed the lithosphere, and the area of the earthquake was the entire
An earthquake caused by contact or collision with a comet must be felt simultaneously all around the world. An earthquake is a phenomenon that occurs from time to time; but an earthquake accompanying an impact in the cosmos would stand out and be recalled as a memorable date by survivors.

Chapter 3. The Hurricane
THE SWIFT shifting of the atmosphere under the impact of the gaseous parts of the comet, the
drift of air attracted by the body of the comet, and the rush of the atmosphere resulting from
inertia when the earth stopped rotating or shifted its poles, all contributed to produce hurricanes of enormous velocity and force and of worldwide dimensions.

The Tide
The ocean tides are produced by the action of the sun and to a larger extent by that of the moon.
A body larger than the moon or one nearer to the earth would act with greater effect. A comet
with a head as large as the earth, passing sufficiently close, would raise the waters of the oceans miles high. The slowing down or stasis of the earth in its rotation would cause a tidal recession of water toward the poles, but the celestial body near by would disturb this poleward recession, drawing the water toward itself.
It was an unusual event, and because it was unusual, it became the most impressive recollection in the very long history of this people. All peoples and nations were blasted by the same fire and shattered in the same fury. The tribes of Israel on the shore of a sea found in this annihilation their salvation from bondage. They escaped destruction but their oppressors perished before their eyes. They extolled the Creator, took upon themselves the burden of moral rules, and considered themselves chosen for a great destiny.
The problem of the migration of the stones must be regarded as only partially connected with the progress and retreat of the ice sheet, if at all.

The Battle in the Sky
At the same time that the seas were heaped up in immense tides, a pageant went on in the sky
which presented itself to the horrified onlookers on earth as a gigantic battle. Because this battle was seen from almost all parts of the world, and because it impressed itself very strongly upon the imagination of the peoples, it can be reconstructed in some detail.
The events in the sky were viewed by the peoples of the world as a fight between an evil monster in the form of a serpent and the light-god who engaged the monster in battle and thus saved the world. The tail of the comet, leaping back and forth under the discharges of the flaming globe, was regarded as a separate body, inimical to the globe of the comet.

The Comet of Typhon
It was not only Abraham Rockenbach who synchronized the appearance of the comet Typhon
with the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt.

The Spark
The great discharges of interplanetary force are commemorated in the traditions, legends, and
mythology of all the peoples of the world. The god—Zeus of the Greeks, Odin of the Icelanders,
Ukko of the Finns, Perun of the Russian pagans, Wotan (Woden) of the Germans, Mazda of the
Persians, Marduk of the Babylonians, Shiva of the Hindus—is pictured with lightning in his
hand and described as the god who threw his thunderbolt at the world overwhelmed with water and fire.

The Collapsed Sky
The rain of meteorites and fire from the sky, the clouds of dust of exogenous origin that drifted
low, and the displacement of the world quarters created the impression that the sky had

Chapter 4. Boiling Earth and Sea
TWO CELESTIAL BODIES were driven near to each other. The interior of the terrestrial globe
pushed toward the exterior, The earth, disturbed in its rotation, developed heat. The land surface became hot. Various sources of many peoples describe the melting of the earth's surface and the boiling of the sea.
According to the traditions of the New World, the profile of the land changed in a catastrophe,
new valleys were formed, mountain ridges were torn apart, new gulfs were cut out, ancient
heights were overturned and new ones sprang up. The few survivors of the ruined world were
enveloped in darkness, "the sun in some way did not exist," and in intervals in the light of
blazing fires they saw the silhouettes of new mountains.

Mount Sinai
In the seventies of the last century a scholar, Charles Beke, suggested that Mount Sinai was a volcano in the Arabian Desert. The Book of Deuteronomy (4:11) says "the mountain burned with fire unto the midst of heaven, with darkness, clouds, and thick darkness." Beke's idea was rejected by his contemporaries and ultimately by himself.2 Modern scholars, however, agree with his original theory.

Earthquakes are often accompanied by a roaring noise that comes from the bowels of the earth.
This phenomenon was known to early geographers. The sound was attributed to the gods and called theophany.
It was a perfect setting for hearing words in the voice of nature in an uproar. An inspired leader
interpreted the voice he heard, ten long, trumpetlike blasts. The earth groaned: for weeks now all its strata had been disarranged, its orbit distorted, its world quarters displaced, its oceans thrown upon its continents, its seas turned into deserts, its mountains upheaved, its islands submerged, its rivers running upstream—a world flowing with lava, shattered by meteorites, with yawning chasms, burning naphtha, vomiting volcanoes, shaking ground, a world enshrouded in an atmosphere filled with smoke and vapor.
The necessity, soon after the flood, of finding anew the four directions and learning anew the
movements of the sun and the moon, of delineating the zodiacal signs, of compiling the calendar, of informing the population of China of the sequence of the seasons, creates the impression that during the catastrophe the orbit of the earth and the year, the inclination of the axis and the seasons, the orbit of the moon and the month, changed. We are not told what caused the cataclysm, but it is written in ancient annals that during the reign of Yahou "a brilliant star issued from the constellation Yin."

Chapter 5. East and West
OUR PLANET rotates from west to east. Has it always done so? In this rotation from west to
east, the sun is seen to rise in the east and set in the west. Was the east the primeval and only
place of the sunrise? There is testimony from all parts of the world that the side which is now turned toward the evening once faced the morning.
The reversal of the movement of the sun in the sky was not a peaceful event; it was an act of
wrath and destruction.
The traditions of peoples agree in synchronizing the changes in the movement of the sun with
great catastrophes which terminated world ages. The changes in the movement of the sun in each successive age make the use by many peoples of the term "sun" for "age" understandable.
The reversal of east and west, if combined with the reversal of north and south, would turn the
constellations of the north into constellations of the south, and show them in reversed order.

The Reversed Polarity of the Earth
A thunderbolt, on striking a magnet, reverses the poles of the magnet. The terrestrial globe is a
huge magnet. A short circuit between it and another celestial body could result in the north and
south magnetic poles of the earth exchanging places.
It is possible to detect in the geological records of the earth the orientation of the terrestrial
magnetic field in past ages.
The reversed polarity of lava indicates that in recent geological times the magnetic poles of the
globe were reversed; when they had a very different orientation, abundant flows of lava took

The Quarters of the World Displaced
Was the cosmic catastrophe that terminated a world age in the days of the fall of the Middle
Kingdom and of the Exodus one of these occasions, and did the earth change the direction of its
rotation at that time? If we cannot assert this much, we can at least maintain that the earth did not remain on the same orbit, nor did its poles stay in their places, nor was the direction of the axis the same as before.
Also, the day of the Lawgiving, when the worlds collided again, was, according to numerous
rabbinical sources, a day of unusual length: the motion of the sun was disturbed.
The Greeks, like other peoples, spoke of the reversal of the quarters of the earth and not merely in allegories but in literal terms.

Changes in the Times and the Seasons
Many agents collaborated to change the climate. Insolation was impaired by heavy clouds of
dust, and the radiation of heat from the earth was equally hindered. Heat was generated by the
earth's contacts with another celestial body; the earth was removed to an orbit farther from the sun; the polar regions were displaced; oceans and seas evaporated and the vapors precipitated as snow on new polar regions and in the higher latitudes in a long Fimbul-winter and formed new  ice sheets; the axis on which the earth rotated pointed in a different direction, and the order of the seasons was disturbed.
It is characteristic that in the written traditions of the peoples of antiquity the disorder of the
seasons is directly connected with the derangement in the motion of the heavenly bodies.
With the end of the Middle Kingdom in Egypt, when the Israelites left that country, the old
order of seasons came to an end and a new world age began.

Chapter 6. The Shadow of Death
If the eruption of a single volcano can darken the atmosphere over the entire globe, a
simultaneous and prolonged eruption of thousands of volcanoes would blacken the sky. And if
the dust of the comet of —44 had a darkening effect, contact of the earth with a great cinder trailing comet of the fifteenth century before this era could likewise cause the blackening of the
sky. As this comet activated all the volcanoes and created new ones, the cumulative action of the
eruptions and of the comet's dust must have saturated the atmosphere with floating particles.
The "shadow of death" is related to the time of the wanderings in the desert after the Exodus
from Egypt. The sinister meaning of the words "shadow of death" corresponds with the
description of the Ermitage Papyrus: "None can live when the sun is veiled by clouds."
The clouds that covered the desert during the wandering of the Twelve Tribes were called a
"celestial garment" or "clouds of glory."
The Quiche tribe migrated to Mexico, the Israelites roamed in the desert, the Amalekites
migrated toward Palestine and Egypt—an uneasy movement took place in all corners of the
ruined world.

When the air is overcharged with vapor, dew, rain, hail, or snow falls. Most probably the
atmosphere discharged its compounds, presumably of carbon and hydrogen, in a similar way.
Has any testimony been preserved that during the many years of gloom carbohydrates
It was called "corn of heaven" and it was ground between stones and baked in pans. The manna fell from the clouds.
Three elements are connected in the Icelandic tradition which are the same three we met in the Israelite tradition: the world fire, the dark winter that endured many years, and the morning dew that served as food during these years of gloom when nothing budded.
The writings of Buddhism relate that when a world cycle comes to an end with the world
destroyed and the ocean dried up, there is no distinction of day and night and heavenly ambrosia serves as food.
The Greeks called the heavenly bread ambrosia. It is described by the Greek poets in identical
terms with manna: it had the taste of honey and a fragrance. This heavenly bread has given
classical scholars many headaches. Greek authors from Homer and Hesiod down through the
ages continually referred to ambrosia as the heavenly food which in its fluid state is called

Rivers of Milk and Honey
A few hours after the break of day, the heat under the cloud cover liquefied the grains and
volatilized them. The ground absorbed some of the liquefied mass, as it absorbs dew. The
grains also fell upon the water, and the rivers became milky in appearance.

The great sound of the trumpet was produced by the earth; the Israelite tribes, believing in magic, thought that the sound of the earth came in response to the blowing of the rams' horns for seven days.

Chapter 7. Stones Suspended in the Air
THE HOT HAILSTONES which, at Moses' intercession, had remained suspended in the air
when they were about to fall upon the Egyptians, were now cast down upon the Canaanites."
These words mean that a part of the meteorites of the cometary train of the days of Exodus
remained in the celestial sphere for about fifty years, falling in the days of Joshua, in the valley
of Beth-horon, on the same forenoon when the sun and the moon stood still for the length of a
full day.
With the earth disturbed in its spinning on its axis, the mechanical friction of displaced strata and magma must have set the world on fire.

Many authors have dealt with the story of Phaethon; the best known version is a creation of the Latin poet Ovid. The chariot of the sun, driven by Phaethon, moved "no longer in the same
course as before."
How could the poets have known that a change in the movement of the sun across the firmament must cause a world conflagration, blazing of volcanoes, boiling of rivers, disappearance of seas, birth of deserts, emergence of islands, if the sun never changed its harmonious journey from sunrise to sunset?
The Egyptian priest explained to Solon that in these catastrophes the literary works of many
peoples and their learned men perished; for that reason the Greeks were still childish, as they no longer knew the true horrors of the past.

Plato set down what Solon had heard in Egypt from the learned priest.
Modern scholars, finding some affinity between American, Egyptian, and Phoenician cultures, think that Atlantis may have been the intermediary link. There is much probability in these speculations; if they are justified, Crete, a maritime base of Carian navigators, may disclose some information about Atlantis as soon as the Cretan scripts are satisfactorily deciphered.
At the time when Atlantis perished in the ocean, the people of Greece were destroyed: the
catastrophe was ubiquitous.

The Floods of Deucalion and Ogyges
The history of Greece knows two great natural catastrophes: the floods of Deucalion and of
Ogyges. One of them, usually that of Deucalion, is described by Greek authors as having been
simultaneous with the conflagration of Phaethon. The floods of Deucalion and Ogyges brought
overwhelming destruction to the mainland of Greece and to the islands around and caused
changes in the geographical profile of the area. That of Deucalion was most devastating: water
covered the land and annihilated the population. According to the legend, only two persons—
Deucalion and his wife—remained alive. This last detail must not be taken more literally than
similar statements found in descriptions of great catastrophes all around the world.
The assertion of Solinus, the author of Polyhistor, that the flood of Ogyges was followed by a
night of nine months' duration does not necessarily signify a confusion with the darkness that
ensued after the cataclysm of the Exodus; as the causes were similar, similar results must have
followed. The eruption of thousands of volcanoes would suffice to produce this darkness, of a
shorter duration than that which followed the cataclysm of the Exodus.

Chapter 8. The Fifty-two Year Period
THE WORKS of Fernando de Alva Ixtlilxochitl, the early Mexican scholar (circa 1568-1648)
who was able to read old Mexican texts, preserve the ancient tradition according to which the
multiple of fifty-two-year periods played an important role in the recurrence of world
catastrophes. He asserts also that only fifty-two years elapsed between two great catastrophes, each of which terminated a world age.

Every seventh year, according to the law, was a sabbatical year during which the land had to
be left fallow and Jewish slaves set free. The fiftieth year was a jubilee year, when the land not
only had to be left fallow, but had to be returned to its original proprietors. According to the law, one could not convey his land for ever; the deed of sale was but a lease for whatever number of years remained until the jubilee year.

The Birth of Venus
A planet turns and revolves on a quite circular orbit around a greater body, the sun; it makes
contact with another body, a comet, that travels on a stretched out ellipse. The planet slips from its axis, runs in disorder off its orbit, wanders rather erratically, and in the end is freed from the embrace of the comet.
Quetzal-cohuatl is the well-known name of the planet Venus.
The Fathers of the Church considered Ogyges a contemporary of Moses.

The Blazing Star
The earliest writer who refers to the transformation of Phaethon into a planet is Hesiod.
The birth of the Morning Star, or the transformation of a legendary person (Istehar, Phaethon,
Quetzal-cohuatl) into the Morning Star was a widespread motif in the folklore of the oriental
and occidental peoples.
In an ancient Hindu table of planets, attributed to the year —3102, Venus alone among the
visible planets is absent.
The inability of the ancient Hindus and Babylonians to see Venus in the sky, even though it is
more conspicuous than the other planets, are puzzling unless Venus was not among the planets.

One of the Planets Is a Comet
Aristotle disagreed with the Pythagorean scholars who considered one of the five planets to be a comet.

The Comet Venus
During the centuries when Venus was a comet, it had a tail.
Venus, with its glowing train, was a very brilliant body; it is therefore not strange that the
Chaldeans described it as a "bright torch of heaven," also as a "diamond that illuminates like
the sun," and compared its light with the light of the rising sun.
Possessing a tail and moving on a not yet circular orbit, Venus was more of a comet than a planet.
Sanchoniathon says that Astarte (Venus) had a bull's head. The planet was even called
Ashteroth-Karnaim, or Astarte of the Horns, a name given to a city in Canaan in honor of this
deity. The golden calf worshiped by Aaron and the people at the foot of Sinai was the image
of the star. Rabbinical authorities say that "the devotion of Israel to this worship of the bull is in
part explained by the circumstance that, while passing through the Red Sea, they beheld the
celestial Throne, and most distinctly of the four creatures about the Throne, they saw the ox."
The likeness of a calf was placed by Jeroboam in Dan, the great temple of the Northern
The long horns of Venus could have been seen without the aid of a telescopic lens.

Chapter 9. Pallas Athene
The slaying of the monster by a planet-god is the way in which the peoples perceived the
convulsion of the pillar of smoke when the earth and the comet Venus disturbed each other in
their orbits, and the head of the comet and its tail leaped against each other in violent electrical
The birth of the planet Athene is sung in the Homeric hymn dedicated to her, "the glorious
goddess, virgin, Tritogeneia."
Diodorus, referring to undisclosed older authorities, says that Lake Triton in Africa
"disappeared from sight in the course of an earthquake, when those parts of it which lay toward the ocean were torn asunder." This account implies that a great lake or marsh in Africa, separated from the Atlantic Ocean by a mountainous barrier, disappeared when the barrier was broken or lowered in a catastrophe. Ovid says that Libya became a desert in consequence of Phaethon's conflagration.
Pallas Athene is identified with Astarte (Ishtar) or the planet Venus of the Babylonians. Anaitis of the Iranians, too, is identified as Pallas Athene and as the planet Venus.

Zeus and Athene
Was it the planet Jupiter or Venus that caused the catastrophe of the time of Exodus?
The cause of this duality in the mythological handling of an historical event lies in the fact that
the ancients themselves did not know for certain which of the planets had caused the destruction.
Some saw the pillar of cloud—Typhon defeated by Jupiter, the ball of fire that emerged from the pillar and battled with it. Others interpreted the globe as a body different from Jupiter.
Venus was expelled as a comet and then changed to a planet after contact with a number of members of the solar system.

Worship of the Morning Star
"And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole." Of this serpent it is said that it was made with the purpose of providing a cure for those bitten by snakes. Seven and a half centuries later this brazen serpent of Moses was broken by King Hezekiah, guided in his monotheistic zeal by the prophet Isaiah, "for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it." The brazen serpent was most probably the image of the pillar of cloud and fire which appeared as a moving serpent to all peoples of the world. St. Jerome apparently had this image in view when he interpreted the star mentioned by Amos as Lucifer.

The Sacred Cow
Venus cornuta, looked like the head of a horned animal; and since it moved the earth out of its
place, like a bull with its horns, the planet Venus was pictured as a bull.
In time, Ishtar changed from male to female, and in many places worship of the bull changed to worship of the cow. The main reason for this seems to have been the fall of manna which turned the rivers into streams of honey and milk. A horned planet that produced milk most closely resembled a cow.

Baal Zevuv (Beelzebub)
The beautiful Morning Star was related to Ahriman, Seth, Lucifer, name equivalents of Satan. It
was also Baal of the Canaanites and of the Northern Kingdom of the Ten Tribes, the god hated
by the biblical prophets, also Beelzebub or Baal Zevuv, or Baal of the fly.

Venus in the Folklore of the Indians
Primitive peoples often are bound by inflexible customs and beliefs that date back hundreds of
generations. The traditions of many primitive races speak of a "lower sky" in the past, a 'larger
sun," a swifter movement of the sun across the firmament, a shorter day that became longer after the sun was arrested on its path.
World conflagration is a frequent motif in folklore.
The shooting star that made the earth into a sea of flames, the terrible noise, the water that rose mountain high, and the appearance of a monster in the sky, like Typhon or a dragon, all these elements were not brought together in this Indian narrative by sheer invention; they belong together.
Because the same elements can be recognized in very different settings, we can affirm that there was no borrowing from one people by another. A common experience created the stories, so dissimilar at first, and so much alike on second thought.
The change in the color of the sun and the moon was conditioned by the presence of cometary
gases between the earth and these bodies; it is referred to in the Prophets of the Scriptures.
Stones falling from the sky belong to the same complex of phenomena.

Chapter 10. The Synodical Year of Venus
THE PLANET Venus, at the present time, revolves around the sun in 288 days, which is the
siderial year of the planet. However, seen from the earth, which revolves around the sun on a
larger orbit and at a lower speed, Venus returns to the same position with respect to the earth
after 584 days, which is its synodical year.
The Egyptians of the second part of the first pre-Christian millennium observed the Venus year.
The Venus calendar preserved its religious significance for a long time, down to the end of the Middle Ages and the discovery of America, and even thereafter, but that already in the eighth century before the present era an eight or double four-year cycle of Venus was observed in time reckoning and therefore must have been established in the celestial sphere.
In the second half of the second millennium and in the beginning of the first millennium, Venus
was still a comet; and though a comet can have a circular orbit—there is such a comet in the
solar system —Venus was not then moving on a circular orbit as it does now; its orbit crossed
the orbit of the earth and endangered it every fifty years. Since, by the second half of the eighth
century before the present era, Venus' cycle was similar to what it is today, it follows that some
time before then Venus must have changed its orbit and achieved its present circular path
between Mercury and the earth and become the Morning and Evening Star.
In the second half of the second millennium and in the beginning of the first millennium, Venus
was still a comet; and though a comet can have a circular orbit—there is such a comet in the
solar system —Venus was not then moving on a circular orbit as it does now; its orbit crossed
the orbit of the earth and endangered it every fifty years. Since, by the second half of the eighth
century before the present era, Venus' cycle was similar to what it is today, it follows that some
time before then Venus must have changed its orbit and achieved its present circular path
between Mercury and the earth and become the Morning and Evening Star.

Venus Moves Irregularly
In the library of Assurbanipal in Nineveh were stored astronomical books of his and of previous
ages; in the ruins of this library Sir Henry Layard found the Venus tablets. There arose the question: From what period do the observations of these tablets date?

Venus Becomes trie Morning Star
Since the latter part of the eighth century before the present era, Venus has followed an orbit
between Mercury and earth, which it has maintained ever since. It became the Morning and
Evening Star. Seen from the earth, it is never removed more than 48 degrees (when at its eastern and western elongation) or three hours and a few minutes east or west of the sun. The dreaded comet became a tame planet. It has the most nearly circular orbit among the planets.
Why, it is also asked, should the beautiful Morning Star, called Lucifer, the Light Bearer, live in
the imagination of peoples as an evil power, a fallen star? What is in this lovely planet that
makes her name an equivalent of Satan, or Seth of the Egyptians, the dark power?
Lucifer was a feared prodigy in the sky, and its origin, as illuminated in this book, explains how
it came to be regarded as a dark power and a fallen star.

Part II. Mars
Chapter I. Amos
ABOUT seven hundred fifty years passed after the great catastrophe of the days of the Exodus,
or seven centuries after the cosmic disturbance in the days of Joshua. During all this time the
world was afraid of the recurrence of the catastrophe at the end of every jubilee period. Then,
starting about the middle of the eighth century before the present era, a new series of cosmic
upheavals took place at intervals of short duration.
In the eighth century, in the days of Uzziah, king of Jerusalem, there occurred a devastating
catastrophe called raash or "commotion." Amos, who lived at the time of Uzziah, began to
predict a cosmic upheaval before the raash took place, and after the catastrophe, Isaiah, Joel, Hosea, and Micah insisted unanimously and with great emphasis on the inevitability of another encounter of the earth with some cosmic body.
Amos was persecuted and killed. The catastrophe did not fail to come at the appointed time.

The Year -747
If the commotion of the days of Uzziah was of global character and was brought about by an
extraterrestrial agent, it must have caused some disturbance in the motion of the earth on its axis and along its orbit. Such a disturbance would have made the old calendar obsolete and would have required the introduction of a new calendar. In —747 a new calendar was introduced in the Middle East, and that year is known as "the beginning of the era of Nabonassar." It is asserted that some astronomical event gave birth to this new calendar, but the nature of the event is not known. The beginning of the era of Nabonassar, otherwise an obscure Babylonian king, was an astronomical date used as late as the second Christian century by the great mathematician and astronomer of the Alexandrian school, Ptolemy, and also by other scholars. It was employed as a point of departure of ancient astronomical tables.
Time was counted "from the commotion in the days of Uzziah."

Isaiah began to prophesy immediately after the "commotion" of the days of Uzziah, even on the same day. The destruction in the land was very great.
The catastrophe came on the day on which King Ahaz was buried. There was a "commotion":
the terrestrial axis shifted or was tilted, and the sunset was hastened by several hours. This
cosmic disturbance is described in the Talmud, in the Midrashim, and referred to by the Fathers
of the Church.' It is related also in the records and told in the traditions of many peoples. It
appears that a heavenly body passed very close to the earth, moving, as it seems, in the same
direction as the earth on its nocturnal side.

The Argive Tyrants
Greek tradition persists that a cosmic catastrophe occurred in the time of these tyrants: the sun changed its course and the night arrived before its proper time.
Seneca relates the fear of world destruction experienced by those who lived at the time of Atreus and Thyestes, the tyrants of the Argive plain.
After the catastrophe of the days of Atreus and Thyestes, the luminaries crossed their former
paths obliquely; the poles were shifted; the year lengthened—the orbit of the earth became

Again Isaiah
Time passed after the death of Ahaz, and the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah approached.
Again the frightened world anxiously anticipated a catastrophe. On its two previous approaches, the celestial missile had come very close, indeed. This time the end of the world was feared. After the cataclysms of the days of Uzziah and of the funeral day of Ahaz, one did not have to be a prophet to foretell a new cosmic catastrophe. The earth will move out of its place, a scorching flame will devour the air, hot stones will fall from the sky, and the waters of the sea will mount and descend upon the continents.

Maimonides and Spinoza, the Exegetes
Maimonides was averse to finding any word or sentence in the Prophets or elsewhere in the Bible that would suggest a destruction of the world or even a change in its order. Each and every such expression he explained as a poetical substitute for an exposition of political ideas and acts.
Baruch Spinoza proceeds from the premise that "Nature always observes laws and rules . . .
although they may not all be known to us, and therefore she keeps a fixed and immutable order."
"Miracles" merely mean events of which the natural cause cannot be explained.
Spinoza insists that the subjective apperception and the peculiar manner of expression of the ancient Hebrews are the only reasons for the accounts of unnatural events.

Chapter 2. The Year -687
IN ABOUT —722, after three years of siege, Samaria, the capital of the Ten Tribes, was
captured by Sargon II, and the population of the Northern Kingdom, or Israel, was removed into
captivity from which it never returned.
The first campaign against Judah took place in —702 or —701. The date of the second campaign is established as —687, or less probably, -686.

Ignis e Coelo
The destruction of the army of Sennacherib is described laconically in the Book of Kings.
The Talmud and Midrash sources, which are numerous, all agree on the manner in which the
Assyrian host was destroyed: a blast fell from the sky on the camp of Sennacherib. It was not a
flame, but a consuming blast: "Their souls were burnt, though their garments remained intact."
The phenomenon was accompanied by a terrific noise.
The rabbinical sources state in a definite manner that the disturbance in the movement of the sun happened on the evening of the destruction of Sennacherib's army by a devouring blast.
It was apparently some cosmic cause that was responsible for the sudden destruction of the army of Sennacherib and brought about the perturbation in the rotating movement of the earth.
Gaseous masses reaching the atmosphere could asphyxiate all breath in certain areas.
The words in the annals, "in the night, stars fell like rain," are the same as in the record of
Confucius dealing with the cosmic event on the 23rd of March, —687. The annals supply the
information that the cause of this phenomenon was a disturbance among the planets. The record of Confucius is a precious entry, because the time of the phenomenon—the day, the month, and the year—is given.

The Worship of Mars
Only one god of Roman mythology plays a role not comparable to that attributed to him on the Greek Olympus. It is the god Mars, whose counterpart is Ares of the Greeks.1 Mars, the lord of war, was second to Jupiter-Zeus. He personified the planet Mars, to him was dedicated the month of March (Mars), and as a god he was supposed to be the father of Romulus, the founder of Rome. He was the national god of the Romans.
The founding of Rome took place close in time to the great perturbations of nature in the days of Amos and Isaiah. According to the calculation of Fabius Pictor, Rome was founded in the latter half of the first year of the eighth Olympiad, or the year —747; other Roman authorities differ by a few years only. The year —747 is the beginning of an astronomical era in the Middle East; and the "commotion of Uzziah" took place, apparently, in the same year.
If Mars really was the deified cosmic visitor of the days of Hezekiah and Sennacherib, then one
might expect not only that the activities of Mars would have been ascribed to the generation of
Romulus and the foundation of Rome, but that the very date of the perturbation would have been a celebrated date in the cult of Mars.

Mars Moves the Earth from Its Pivot
Venus was a comet, and in historical times it became a planet. Was Mars a comet in the eighth
century before this era? There is evidence that long before the eighth century Mars was a planet in the solar system. A four-planet system was known to Chaldean astronomy, in which Venus was absent but Mars was present.
The planet Mars was feared for its violence.

Chapter 3. What Caused Venus and Mars to Shift Their Orbits?
WHEN VENUS became a new member of the solar system, it moved on a stretched ellipse, and
for centuries imperiled the other planets. Because of its dangerous circling, Venus was diligently
observed in both hemispheres, and records were kept of its movement. In the last centuries before this era, the 288-day year of Venus, and apparently also its orbit, were practically the same as in modem times. As early as the second half of the seventh century before this era, Venus, watched until then with anxiety, had already ceased to be a cause of dreadful expectation; it probably reached then the orbital stage in which it was found in the last centuries before this era, and where we still find it today.
In Assyro-Babylonia, in inscriptions made before the ninth century, the name of Nergal is found only on rare occasions. On the astronomical ceiling of Senmut Mars does not appear among the planets. It did not play any conspicuous part in the early mythology of the celestial gods. But in the ninth or eighth century before this era, the situation changed radically. Mars became the dreaded planet.

When Was the Iliad Created?
The fall of Troy is sometimes thought to have taken place in the twelfth century.
The tradition about Aeneas who, saved when Troy was captured, went to Carthage (a city built in the ninth century) and from there to Italy, where he founded Rome (a city first built in the middle of the eighth century), implies that Troy was destroyed in the eighth or late in the ninth century.
It was in the eighth century that Mars-Nergal, an obscure deity, became a prominent god. Epic poems, rich in mythology, that originated in the eighth or seventh century, would not be silent about Mars-Ares, who became "outrageous" at that time.
The Iliad is full of descriptions of the violent deeds of Ares.
If Ares, the Mars of the Greeks, is not mentioned in the creations of Homer, this would support the view that the Iliad and Odyssey were created in the tenth century or earlier, or at least that the drama they describe had taken place not later than this time. But if Ares is presented as a war god in these epics, it would indicate that they were composed in the eighth century or thereafter. It was in the eighth century that Mars-Nergal, an obscure deity, became a prominent god.

Quetzal-cohuatl, known as the planet Venus, was the patron of the Toltecs. But the Aztecs, who n
later came to Mexico and supplanted the Toltecs, revered Huitzilopochtli (Vitchilupuchtli) as
their protector-god.
The identity of their appearance, character, and action is dictated by the fact that Mars and Huitzilopochtli were one and the same planet-god.

The disturbances in the family of planets were caused by collisions between Venus and Mars.
The following passage from the Taoist text of Wen-Tze contains a description of calamities
which, as we have found, belong together: "When the sky, hostile to living beings, wishes to destroy them, it burns them; the sun and the moon lose their form and are eclipsed; the five planets leave their paths; the four seasons encroach one upon another; daylight is obscured; glowing mountains collapse; rivers are dried up; it thunders then in winter, hoarfrost falls in summer; the atmosphere is thick and human beings are choked; the state perishes; the aspect and the order of the sky are altered; the customs of the age are disturbed... all living beings harass one another."

Ancient Hindu astronomy distinguished between many different conjunctions, translated as follows: samyoga (conjunction), sama-gama (coming together), yoga (junction), melaka (uniting), yuti (union), yuddha (encounter, in the meaning of conflict, fight).
The Hindus of early times knew that the earth is one of the planets, though they thought it to be situated in the center of the universe.

The Bundahis
The planet named Gokihar or "Wolf-progeny" and "special disturber of the moon," and a
celestial body called Mievish-Muspar, "provided with tails," or a comet, brought confusion to
the sun, moon, and stars.

Lucifer Cut Down
It can be said that the planet Mars saved the terrestrial globe from a major catastrophe by
colliding with Venus.
After centuries of terror, one sword of Damocles was removed from above the heads of mankind, only to be replaced by another. Mars became the dread of the peoples, and its return was feared every fifteen years.
Venus, which collided with the earth in the fifteenth century before the present era, collided with Mars in the eighth century.

Chapter 4
IN BABYLON of the eighth century the planet Mars became a great and feared god, to whom
many prayers were composed and hymns and invocations were sung and magic formulas were
The Roman god Mars was pictured with a sword; he became the god of war. The Chaldean
Nergal is called "Sword-god."
A planet that collided with other planets in the sky and rushed against the earth as if with a firesword became the god of battle, wresting this title from the hands of Athene-Ishtar.

In the Babylonian astrological texts it is said that "a star takes the shape of divers animals: lion,
jackal, dog, pig, fish."
The god with the head of a jackal or wolf in the Egyptian pantheon was apparently Mars.
Wolf or Lupus Martius was the animal symbol for Mars of the Roman religion.
The battle of Mars and Venus is presented, in the Icelandic epos, as a fight between the wolf Fenris and the serpent Midgard.

Sword-Time, Wolf-Time
The fear of the Judgment Day not only did not pacify the nations, but on the contrary, uprooted
them, impelling them to migration and war.
The trembling earth, the displacement of the poles, the change in the climate, the frightening
prodigies in the sky, caused great movements of peoples.
In India the patron of the invading Aryan race was Indra, the god of war, the Hindu Mars.
The catastrophes of flood and of conflagration were ascribed to the influence of planets, and the conjunction was called the fatal moment.
The earth, one of the planets, had been subject to conflicts with other planets, and traces of
knowledge of these occurrences may be found in the early writers.
The Etruscans, as cited by Censorinus and quoted in the Section on "The World Ages," thought that celestial prodigies augured the end of each age.

The Stormer of the Walls
Recurrent displacement of the terrestrial globe, torsion of the litho-sphere, and migration of the inner parts of the globe must have caused a succession of earthquakes over a prolonged period.
These ever recurrent earthshocks in a country as rich in oil as Mesopotamia also caused
eruptions of earth deposits: "The earth threw oil and asphalt," observed the official astrologers,
as the effect of an earthquake.
However, mountain building is a process the causes of which have not been established; the
migration of continents is but a hypothesis; and the crumbling of the earth's crust must have
some additional cause besides the force of gravity, because this force was active when the crust
was built and made possible the formation of the crust in its present shape. Hence, all these
theories are only hypotheses about unknown causes of known phenomena.
On the basis of the material offered in the foregoing pages, the assumption is made here that
earthquakes result from torsion of the crust following a change in the position of the equator and the displacement of matter inside the globe caused by the direct attraction of a cosmic body when in a close contact.

The Steeds of Mars
A scholar and pamphleteer, Jonathan Swift, in his Gulliver's Travels (1726), wrote that the planet Mars had two satellites, very small ones. Actually Mars has two satellites, mere rocks, one being as small as about ten (?) miles in diameter, the other only five (?) miles.8 One travels around Mars in 7 hours 39 minutes, the other in 30 hours 18 minutes. Their distance from the center of Mars is even less than Swift said it was.4 They were discovered by Asaph Hall in 1877.
The fact is that Homer knew about the "two steeds of Mars" that drew his chariot; Virgil also wrote about them.
When Mars was very close to the earth, its two trabants were visible.
Whether or not Swift borrowed his knowledge of the existence of two trabants of Mars from
some ancient astrological work, the ancient poets knew of the existence of the satellites of Mars.

The Terrible Ones
Venus had a tail, considerably shortened since the time it was a comet, but still long enough to
give the impression of a hanging flame, or smoke, or attached hair. When Mars clashed with
Venus, asteroids,1 meteorites, and gases were torn from this trailing part, and began a semi-independent existence, some following the orbit of Mars, some other paths.
The Maruts are understood here as comets which in great numbers started to whirl in the sky on short orbits, after the impact of Mars and Venus. They followed and preceded the planet Mars.
By comparing Hebrew historical, Chinese astronomical, and Latin ecclesiastical material, we
have established that it was the planet Mars which caused a series of catastrophes in the eighth
and seventh centuries before this era. The Greek epos explained how it happened that Venus
ceased and Mars began to be a threat to the earth. In heavenly battles, Ares or Nergal, both
known as the planet Mars, had an entourage of demoniac figures. The name Mars is derived
from the Indian Marut; Maruts, "the terrible ones," are "the terrible ones" of Isaiah and Joel.

Samples from the Planets
The stone of Cronus at Delphi, the image of Diana at Ephesus, which, according to Acts (19 :
35), was the image which fell down from Jupiter, the stones of Amon and Seth at Thebes, were
meteorites. Also the image of Venus on Cyprus was a stone which fell from the sky. The n
Palladium of Troy was a stone that fell on the earth "from Pallas Athene"  (the planet Venus).

The Archangels
Are archangels planets?
Since the Archangel Gabriel is another name for the planet Mars, the ancient Jews knew the origin of the "blast" and the identity of "the angel of the Lord" who destroyed the Assyrian army.
Because of their intervention at moments when the national existence of Israel was at stake,
Michael and Gabriel were looked upon as "guardian angels" of the eternal people.

Planet Worship in Judea in the Seventh Century
In the Northern Kingdom the process of disassociating the deity from the celestial object had not yet been completed when the Kingdom was destroyed (—723 or —722), and its population was led away into captivity, from which they did not return.
It was in the time of Josiah, grandson of Manasseh, and shortly before the exile of Judah to
Babylon, that a pure monotheism emerged as an outcome of the progress the Jewish people had made during its long struggle for national existence, on the one hand, and for purification of its concept of God, on the other.
The Scriptures do not hide the fact that in Judea, as well as in Israel, the planetary cult was the
official cult with the priests and with kings, with many prophets and with the people.

Chapter 6. A Collective Amnesia
IT IS an established fact in the learning about the human mind that the most terrifying events of
childhood (in some cases even of manhood) are often forgotten, their memory blotted out from consciousness and displaced into the unconscious strata of the mind, where they continue to live and to express themselves in bizarre forms of fear. Occasionally they may be converted into symptoms of compulsion neuroses and even contribute to the splitting of the personality.
When, in the Ptolemaic age, the priest Manetho starts his story of the invasion of the Hyksos by acknowledging his ignorance of the cause and nature of the blast of heavenly displeasure that befell his land, it becomes apparent that the knowledge which was possibly alive in Egypt in the days when Solon and Pythagoras visited there, had already sunk into oblivion in the Ptolemaic age. Only some hazy tradition about a conflagration of the world was repeated, without knowing when or how it occurred.
The memory of the cataclysms was erased, not because of lack of written traditions, but because of some characteristic process that later caused entire nations, together with their literate men, to read into these traditions allegories or metaphors where actually cosmic disturbances were clearly described.

As the role the planets played in the history of the world retreated ever further into oblivion, the interpretation of nature myths as referring to the sun or the moon became more and more

Of "Pre-existing Ideas" in the Souls of Peoples
The similarity of motifs in the folklore of various peoples on the five continents and on the
islands of the oceans posed a difficult problem for the ethnologists and anthropologists. The
migration of ideas may follow the migration of peoples, but how could unusual motifs of
folklore reach isolated islands where the aborigines do not have any means of crossing the sea?
And why did not technical civilization travel together with spiritual?
The peoples of ancient times, who, like the primitive peoples of the present, lacked modern
protection against the elements of nature, and who lived in the insecurity of tropical storms and tornadoes or frost and snowstorms, must have been more accustomed to seasonal disturbances than we are, and would not have been impressed by the overflow of a river to such a degree as to carry their experience to all parts of the world as a story of a cosmic upheaval.

The Pageants of the Sky
What induced the Mayas to call by the name of Scorpion the constellation known to us and to the ancients by the same name? The constellation, which is not at all like a scorpion, probably was called by this name because a comet that looked like a scorpion appeared in it.

The Subjective Interpretation of the Events and Their Authenticity
What helped to discredit the traditions of the peoples about the catastrophes was their subjective and magical interpretation of the events.
Because the scientific mind cannot believe that a man can make the sun and the moon to stand still, it disbelieves also the alleged event. What contributes to this is the fact that least of all do we place faith in books that demand belief, religious books, though we swear on these.
Precisely because there are great differences in the subjective evaluation of the causes or purposes of the phenomenon, we can assume that the folklore of different peoples deals with one and the same factual event, and only the magical explanations of the miracle are subjective inventions.
If a phenomenon had been similarly described by many peoples, we might suspect that a tale,
originating with one people, had spread around the world, and consequently there is no proof of the authenticity of the event related. But just because one and the same event is embodied in traditions that are very different indeed, its authenticity becomes highly probable, especially if the records of history, ancient charts, sundials, and the physical evidence of natural history
testify to the same effect.

Chapter 7. Poles Uprooted
The moon, being smaller than Mars, would have been greatly influenced by Mars if it came close enough to that planet.
Also, the earth could have been "removed from her place," which would have meant a change in the orbital circumference and thus in the length of the year, or in the inclination of the terrestrial axis to the plane of the ecliptic and thus in the seasons, in the position of the poles on the terrestrial globe, in the velocity of axial rotation, and in the length of the day, and so on.
Modern astronomy does not admit, or even consider, the possibility that at some historical time east and west as well as south and north were reversed.
According to Seneca the Great Bear had been the polar constellation. After a cosmic upheaval
shifted the sky, a star of the Little Bear became the polar star.
In Jaiminiya-Upanisad-Brahmana it is written that the center of the sky, or the point around
which the firmament revolves, is in the Great Bear.
The origin of the polar star is told in many traditions all over the world. The Hindus of the Vedas
worshiped the polar star, Dhrura, "the fixed" or "immovable." In the Puranas it is narrated how
Dhrura became the polar star. The Lapps venerate the polar star and believe that if it should
leave its place, the earth would be destroyed in a great conflagration. The same belief is found
among the North American Indians.
Some of the classic authors knew that the earth had changed its position and had turned toward the south.

Temples and Obelisks
In classic authors references can be found to the fact that the temples of the ancient world were built facing the rising sun.
The Egyptian obelisk could serve as a gnomon, or shadow clock. The length of the shadow and
its direction would indicate the hour of the day. Obelisks placed in pairs served as a calendar. On the vernal and autumnal equinoxes their shadows would be continuous for the length of the day, the sun rising exactly in the east and setting exactly in the west.

The Shadow Clock
The poles changed their locations; all latitudes were displaced; the axis changed its direction; the number of days in the year increased from 360 to 365/4.

The Water Clock
Besides the gnomon or sundial, the Egyptians used the water clock, which had the advantage
over the former of showing time during the night as well as during the day.
The water clock of Amenhotep III presented its investigator with a very strange time scale. Thus the water clock of Amenhotep III, if it was correctly built and correctly interpreted, indicates that either Thebes was closer to the equator or that the inclination of the equator toward the ecliptic was less than the present angle of 23/2°. In either case the climate of the latitudes of Egypt could not have been the same as it is in our age.

A Hemisphere Travels Southward
The change in the position of the poles carried the polar ice outside the new polar circle, while
other regions were brought into the polar circle. There is nothing imperative in the present
position of the pole or in the direction of the polar axis. No known astronomical or geological
law requires the present direction of the axis and the present position of the pole.
The present pole was not always the terrestrial pole, nor did the changes occur in a slow process.
The glacial sheet was a polar cover; the ice ages terminated with catastrophic suddenness;
regions of mild climate moved instantly into the polar circle; the ice sheet in America and
Europe started to melt; great quantities of vapor rising from the surface of the oceans caused
increased precipitation and the formation of a new ice cover. Gigantic waves that traveled across continents, more than the movement of the ice, were responsible for the drift, especially in the north, and for the boulders that were carried long distances and placed atop unrelated formations.
Was not the North Pole at some time in the past 20° or more distant from the point it now occupies—and closer to America? In like manner, the old South Pole would have been roughly the same 20° from the present pole.
It is probable that twenty-seven centuries ago, or perhaps thirty-five, the present North Pole was at Baffin Land or close to the Boothia Felix Peninsula of the American mainland.

Chapter 8. The Year of 360 Days
Numerous evidences are preserved which prove that prior to the year of 365 days, the year was
only 360 days long. Nor was that year of 360 days primordial; it was a transitional form between a year of still fewer days and the present year.
The texts of the Veda period know a year of only 360 days. This Hindu year of 360 days is divided into twelve months of thirty days each.
The Brahmans were aware that the length of the year, of the month, and of the day changed with every new world age.
The ancient Persian year was composed of 360 days or twelve months of thirty days each. In the seventh century five Gatha days were added to the calendar.
The old Babylonian year consisted of twelve months of thirty days each, the months being computed from the time of the appearance of the new moon.
That the introduction of epigomena was not the result of progress in astronomical knowledge,
but was caused by an actual change in the planetary movements, is implied in the Canopus
Decree, for it refers to "the amendment of the faults of the heaven."
The ancient Romans also reckoned 360 days to the year. Plutarch wrote in his "Life of Numa"
that in the time of Romulus, in the eighth century, the Romans had a year of 360 days only.
When the year changed from 360 to 365M days, the Chinese added five and a quarter days to
their year, calling this additional period Khe-ying; they also began to divide a sphere into 365K
degrees, adopting the new year-length not only in the calendar, but also in celestial and terrestrial geometry.
All over the world we find that there was at some time the same calendar of 360 days, and that at some later date, about the seventh century before the present era, five days were added at the end of the year, as "days over the year," or "days of nothing."
Two matters appeared perplexing: a mistake of five and a quarter days in a year could certainly
be traced, not only by astronomers, but even by analphabetic farmers, for in the short span of
forty years— a period that a person could readily observe—the seasons would become displaced by more than two hundred days. The second perplexity concerns the length of a month.

Disarranged Months
As a result of repeated perturbations, the earth changed from an orbit of 360 days' duration to
one of 365/4 days, the days probably not being exactly equal in both cases. The month changed
from thirty to twenty-nine and a half days. These were the values at the beginning and at the end of the century of "the battle of the gods."
Therefore, and in view of the vast material from many peoples, we conclude that at one time
during the century of perturbations, for a period between two catastrophes, the moon receded to an orbit of thirty-five to thirty-six days' duration. It remained on such an orbit for a few decades until, at the next upheaval, it was carried to an orbit of twenty-nine and a half days' duration, on which it has proceeded since then.

Years of Ten Months
When the month was about thirty-six days and the year between 360 and 365/4 days, the year
must have been composed of only ten months.
According to many classical authors, in the days of Romulus the year consisted of ten months,
and in the time of Numa, his successor, two months were added: January and February.

The Reforming of the Calendar
In the middle of the eighth century the calendar then in use became obsolete. From the year —
747 until the last of the catastrophes on the twenty-third of March, —687, the solar and lunar
movements changed repeatedly, necessitating adjustments of the calendar. Reforms undertaken during this time soon became obsolete in their turn, and were replaced by new ones; only after the last catastrophe of —687, when the present world order was established, did the calendar become permanent.
The tablets from Nineveh provide the best possible opportunity to learn how the order of the
world changed in the eighth and seventh centuries.
When the Jews returned from the Babylonian exile, they brought with them their present
calendar, in which the months are called by Assyro-Babylonian names.
The longest and shortest days of the year, and thus the length of the year, are easily determined by the length of the shadow.
After the last cataclysm, the times and the seasons were computed anew.
This stability of the calendar is due to the fact that the celestial order has remained unaltered: no changes in the heavenly order were observed except for minor perturbations between the planets which have no visible effect on their motion. Thus we are lulled into the belief—which is wishful thinking—that we live in an orderly universe.

Chapter 9. The Moon and Its Craters
THE MOON revolves around the earth and, together with the earth, around the sun, showing one and the same face to the inhabitants of the earth. It can be seen in the telescope that the surface of the moon is covered with seas of dried lava and with great craterlike formations.
There are two theories: one sees in them great extinct volcanoes; the other, formations produced by the bombardment of great meteorites on the semiliquid mass of the moon before it solidified.
As is readily seen, both theories of lunar craters imply a great catastrophic occurrence. For such
craters to have been formed, tremendous forces must have acted from inside or from without; if these formations were caused by impact on a viscous mass, great meteors must have come flying from many directions.

The Planet Mars
Mars bears a striking resemblance to the earth in the inclination of its axis of rotation to the plane of its orbit and in the period of its diurnal rotation.

The Atmosphere of Mars
The atmosphere of Mars is invisible. If there are any living creatures on that planet, and if they
are endowed with organs of sight, they see a black sky, not a blue one as we do.
In the present study of cosmic catastrophes the endeavor has been to establish the fact that in the eighth and seventh centuries before this era the earth was repeatedly approached by a celestial body; that this body was the planet Mars; that previously Mars had been displaced from its path by contact with Venus, which up to that time had crossed the orbit of the earth, and that Venus, the earth, and Mars, as a consequence, assumed new positions in the solar system.

The Thermal Balance of Mars
Due to the eccentricity of Mars' orbit, the insolation at aphelion is much smaller than at
perihelion (the ratio being about 5:6), and in the southern hemisphere the summer is much hotter but much shorter than in the northern hemisphere. Because of the greater mean distance of Mars from the sun, it is supposed to receive less than half the light and warmth per unit of area that the earth receives; and for this reason its temperature must be some 65° C. below that of the earth, and never above freezing. The mean temperature of a year on the equatorial latitudes of Mars must be similar to that of the polar regions of the earth.

The Gases of Venus
A part of the gaseous trail of Venus remained attached to the earth, another part was torn away by Mars, but the main mass of gases followed the head of the comet. Of the part which remained with the earth, some became a deposit of petroleum; some, in the form of clouds, enveloped the earth for many years, slowly precipitating. The part retained by Venus burned or smoked for a long time, as long as the oxygen carried from the earth lasted; what remained forms today the envelope of carbon clouds of the Morning Star. To the depth penetrated by spectroscopic analysis, oxygen and water vapor are absent. The planet is covered with clouds of dust. Carbon dioxide is an ingredient of Venus' atmosphere.

The Thermal Balance of Venus
What explanation can be given for the phenomenon of the nearly uniform temperature of the day and night hemispheres of Venus? The conclusion drawn was this: The daily rotation of the planet Venus is very rapid and during the short night the temperature cannot fall to any considerable extent. But this conclusion stands in complete contradiction to what was believed to be the established fact of the nonrotation of Venus (with respect to the sun, or of a rotation in relation to the fixed stars with a period equal to the time of one revolution on its planetary orbit or 225 terrestrial days).

The End
Catastrophes have repeatedly reduced civilization on this earth to ruins. But our earth has fared
well in comparison with Mars; and judged by the state of civilization at which mankind has
arrived, conditions for life processes have been improved in some respects. But if events of this
kind happened in the past, they may happen again in the future, with perhaps a different—fatal— result.

I have endeavored to show that two series of cosmic catastrophes took place in historical times, thirty-four and twenty-six centuries ago, and thus only a short time ago not peace but war reigned in the solar system. All cosmological theories assume that the planets have revolved m their places for billions of years; we claim that they have been traveling along their present orbits for only a few thousand years. We maintain also that one planet—Venus—was formerly a comet and that it joined the family of planets within the memory of mankind, thus offering an explanation of how one of the planets originated. We conjectured that the comet Venus originated in the planet Jupiter; then we found that smaller comets were born in contacts between Venus and Mars, thus offering an explanation of the principle of the origin of the comets of the solar system. That these comets are only a few thousand years old explains why, despite dissipation of the material of their tails in space, they have not yet disintegrated entirely. From the fact that Venus was once a comet we learned that comets are not nearly immaterial bodies or "rien visible," as was thought because stars are usually seen through their tails and, on the passage of one or two of them in front of the sun, their heads were not perceptible.
Historical cosmogony offers a chance to employ the fact that there were catastrophes of global
extent in establishing a synchronized history of the ancient world. Previous efforts to build
chronological tables on the basis of astronomical calculations—new moons, eclipses, heliacal
rising or culmination of certain stars—cannot be correct because the order of nature has changed since ancient times. But great upheavals of cosmic character may serve as points of departure for writing a revised history of the nations.
the theory of cosmic catastrophism
The accepted celestial mechanics, notwithstanding the many calculations that have been carried out to many decimal places, or verified by celestial motions, stands only if the sun, the source of light, warmth, and other radiation produced by fusion and fission of atoms, is as a whole an electrically neutral body, and also if the planets, in their usual orbits, are neutral bodies.
In the Newtonian celestial mechanics, based on the theory of gravitation, electricity and magnetism play no role.
If the activity in an atom constitutes a rule for the macrocosm, then the events described in this
book were not merely accidents of celestial traffic, but normal phenomena like birth and death.

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