GLYPHS ‘N ROCKS: DISCOVERING THE SPACE BETWEEN
- 5 July 2012 by laila 0 Comments
During summer, time seems to move slower. Dogs and cats are stretched out in every cool surface they can find. Everywhere you smell lotion, sunshine and adventure. This is time of year to contemplate whats happening outside of our homes, our virtual spaces and reconnect with the earth, water and sky.
Those elements were united while I collected beach rocks along the sandy shores of Lake Erie. In the late afternoon, the sun was losing its intense heat so I could stroll, listen to the lulling cadence of the waves and dig up fossils, beach glass and oddly-shaped stones. The sensory experiences of summer are reminders of the expanse of time, the enormity of Earth, the infinite mysteries of the universe and how we only contemplate them in pieces because our minds cannot fathom the whole.
Ancient petroglyphs, or shapes and symbols carved into rock by our prehistoric ancestors, can show how the human struggle make sense of our world in pieces is as natural a drive as hunger.
Petroglyphs are as old as 7,000-40,000 years – dating back to the Paleolithic period, or more commonly, the Stone Age. The Stone Age revealed the first evidence of tool usage. And one would need tools to etch, carve and hammer into rock to create petroglyphs. With the exception of Antarctica, these early infographics are found everywhere, the most significant of which are in Africa, Australia, the North American southwest, Scandinavia and Siberia.
Through our modern eyes, we recognize the familiar shapes and symbols in the ancient renderings and connect them to our own human experience. Why are these shapes and symbols so familiar? According to the Nova Scotia Museum, these symbols are in a “design-bank” that holds recognizable forms in human history and we draw upon them for art and design.
But what do they mean?
Having a visceral reaction to petroglyphs may be universal, but understanding the hidden meanings of the symbols has remained a mystery. That is until recent advances in science and technology have given us gleanings about the symbols and the function of these early infographics.
Newer theories presented about petroglyphs suggest they are cosmic maps that reflect the constellations appearing in the ancient night skies. Using carbon dating and cosmology, dating the petroglyph can be determined and then the night sky as it would have appeared can be reproduced.
This petroglyph, found near Phoenix, Arizona, could be the visualization of a supernova that created the constellation Scorpius. The supernova, or the explosion that occurs when a star dies, would have happened one millennium ago and 7,100 light-years from Earth. The flash would have been greater than the light from a quarter moon.
The Parowan Gap is a trail that was used yearly by pre-Columbian Freemont People of the Parowan Valley to reach the desert and gather resources. The Parowan Gap petroglyphs are geometrically precise, deeply-carved with skill and characterized with repetitive lines, dots and tic marks suggesting counting.
According to Nal Morris, the petroglyphs were inscribed to record dates and seasons. Morris is the creator of SHAMOS (Sky & Horizon Astronomical Model Ordinate Simulator) – “a model designed to apply astronomical motions to/and over horizons unique to a specific point of observation. It was specifically intended for research in archaeastronomy (the research of ancient people’s knowledge and methods in astronomy.)”
By observing the solar movement through the petroglyphs, Morris could recognize the day count numbers corresponding the cairns across the basin reaching the gap (the “Y” formation) where the sunsets are observed in position marking the solstice, equinox and cross quarters (mid-point dates).
The Tugalo Stone, found in Georgia, is dated 3,000 years old and has been interpreted as a summer solstice calendar using the constellations Orion and Auriga, The language on the stone has been determined to be ancient Celt-Iberian.
Historian and Archeologist Thomas Cox theorizes the stone is an ancient map directing ships to the US from the tip of Spain and North Africa, returning along the eastern shores of North America and then across the ocean to England. The map uses the North Star and constellations as navigational tools. There is evidence that the stone was used as a rubbing to copy maps for those taking these routes.
Why would travelers need these maps? The location of the petroglyph is along a river heading to major copper and gold mines in the US.
How Does This Relate to Us?
The View from the Centre of the Universe , by Nancy Ellen Abrams & Joel R. Primack, is a book about cosmology connecting ancient myth and modern science.
According to the book, the size difference of one human cell to the human body is comparable to the size difference of one human body to the Earth. This scale is called The Planck scale: relativity meets quantum mechanics meets gravity.
The human body is the geometric mean between the largest size we can think of and the smallest idea we can discuss – everything else is “dark matter”.
The human body is made of the rarest elements in the universe – quite literally stardust – hydrogen and helium. These two elements came directly from the Big Bang and all of the other atomic elements in our bodies can be traced to exploding stars.
Everything that is visible to humanity accounts for .5% of what exists as dark matter in the universe.
To visualize this idea, Brian Clegg used the image below in his essay on the Abrams and Primack book published in Popular Science.
This image is found on every American dollar bill. Used here it depicts the 99.5% of matter invisible to humans.
“Transcendence” should not be thought of as an imaginary leap to some place “outside” the universe. Transcendence is what happens many times within this universe, every few powers of ten. For example, on the atomic and subatomic scales, “human” means nothing. There is no humanness to our atoms. Whether atoms are inside us, inside a rock, or drifting through space, is all the same to them. On the atomic scale, therefore, even inside our own bodies we do not exist. “We” are something that transcends atoms. Amazingly, in this interpretation the difference between spiritual and physical becomes – in an approximate way – quantifiable with powers of ten. Things larger than about 1012 cm, or smaller than about 10-2 cm, can only be known through science and only experienced, if at all, spiritually. This includes most of the universe. — Brian Clegg, Popular Science
Sacred Geometry and the Cell Division of Life
Wow! These images remind me of my beach rock collection.
But don’t worry, I won’t be building mashed potato towers anytime soon.