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History Channel reveals “original rocket man”?!?!

Standing on the grounds of old Mayan ruins in Palenque, where the famous sarcophagus of the great 7th century leader was discovered, author David Childress (a regular on the Ancient Alien show) described features of the intricate carvings on the lid of Pakal’s sarcophagus and exclaimed: “He was the original rocket man!”

On the evening of February 17th, a new season of Ancient Alien shows on the History Channel began with an examination of ancient Mayans by a now familiar group of guys known as advocates of the notion that extraterrestrials hundreds and thousands of years ago  interacted with humans here and even played a key role in human development of civilization, technology, and scientific knowledge.

One of the regular guests in this show is Erich Von Daniken who, along with other more contemporary authors and ET pundits on this show, described how they interpret the carvings on the lid.  This excerpt from the wikipedia article on “Ancient Astronauts” provides a good summary of the description they shared on the show:

“Erich von Däniken’s ‘Maya Astronaut’
Pakal’s tomb has been the focus of attention by some “ancient astronaut” enthusiasts since its appearance in Erich von Däniken’s 1968 best seller, Chariots of the Gods?. Von Däniken reproduced a drawing of the sarcophagus lid (incorrectly labeling it as being from “Copan”) and comparing Pacal’s pose to that of 1960s Project Mercury astronauts, interpreting drawings underneath him as rockets, and offering it as evidence of a supposed extraterrestrial influence on the ancient Maya.
In the center of that frame is a man sitting, bending forward. He has a mask on his nose, he uses his two hands to manipulate some controls, and the heel of his left foot is on a kind of pedal with different adjustments. The rear portion is separated from him; he is sitting on a complicated chair, and outside of this whole frame, you see a little flame like an exhaust.
Von Däniken’s claim is not considered a credible interpretation by any professional Mayanist. For example Ian Graham responded, ‘Well, I certainly don’t see any need to regard him as a space man. I don’t see any oxygen tubes. I see a very characteristically drawn Maya face'[3]”

But, here is how scholars see it (as summarized in the wikipedia article on Pakal):

“The large carved stone sarcophagus lid in the Temple of Inscriptions is a famous piece of Classic Maya art. The widely accepted interpretation of the sarcophagus lid is that Pakal is descending into Xibalba, the Maya underworld. Around the edges of the lid are glyphs representing the Sun, the Moon, Venus, and various constellations, locating this event in the nighttime sky. Below him is the Maya water god, who guards the underworld [4]. Beneath Pakal are the “unfolded” jaws of a dragon or serpent, which Pakal is escaping from, ascending towards the world tree. This is a common iconographic representation of the entrance to the underworld. Other examples of this imagery are found in sculpture on Monument 1 “El Rey” and Monument 9 at the Olmec site of Chalcatzingo, Morelos, on Altar 4 at the Olmec site of La Venta, Tabasco, and in recently discovered murals at the Late Preclassic Maya site of San Bartolo, Guatemala.”

The ancient alien theorists assert that ancient peoples commonly misinterpreted the intervening extraterrestrials, utilizing such an awesome technology, as gods.  But, that certainly isn’t something that scholars of religious history and development see.  For example, here is Karen Armstrong in her “A History of God” (pg 5):

“….The numinous power was sensed by human beings in different ways–sometimes it inspired wild, bacchanalian excitement; sometimes a deep calm; sometimes people felt dread, awe and humility in the presence of the mysterious force inherent in every aspect of life.  When people began to devise their myths and worship their gods, they were not seeking a literal explanation for natural phenomena.  The symbolic stories, cave paintings and carvings were an attempt to express their wonder and to link this pervasive mystery with their own lives; indeed, poets, artists and musicians are often impelled by a similar desire today.  In the Palaeothic period, for example, when agriculture was developing, the cult of the Mother Goddess expressed a sense that the fertility which was transforming human life was actually sacred.  Artists carved those statues depicting her as a naked, pregnant woman which archaeologists have found all over Europe, the Middle East and India.  The Great Mother remained imaginatively important for centuries.  Like the old Sky God [my note: felt and seen as an impersonal and aloof force], she was absorbed into later pantheons and took her place alongside the older deities.  She was usually one of the most powerful of the gods, certainly more powerful than the Sky God, who remained a rather shadowy figure…..These myths were not intended to be taken literally, but were elusive to express in any other way.  These myths were not intended to be taken literally, but were metaphoric attempts to describe a reality that was too complex and elusive to express in any other way.  These dramatic and evocative stories of gods and goddesses helped people to articulate their sense of the powerful but unseen forces that surrounded them.”

The History Channel airing this past Friday night focused very little on addressing signs in the Mayan culture that might shed light on what is going to happen at the end of the long count calendar near the end of the year.  Only briefly, near the end of the show, did they discuss the sole known inscription that references what will happen.  Acknowledging the missing fragment on the lower right side, the translation they offered, “the descending of nine gods”, is essentially in line with what we noted in the first article at this blog, where the Bolon Yokte (nine underworld gods) is predicted to return on December 21st.  

One of the regular guests on this show is author Philip Coppens and I thought this excerpt from his online article, “The Return of the Nine”, was a great discussion of the inscription found at an ancient Mayan site in Mexico:

“The Mayan prophecy to do with 2012 was that it would signal the return of ‘The Nine’.

The Nine was mentioned in an inscription on Monument 6 of the Mayan site of Tortuguero in the Mexican state of Tabasco.  The Monument was erected in 669 AD and is one of the very pre-Conquest sources that mention 2012.  Various translations or partial translations of the inscription exist.

This is the most common one:  At the next creation, the Bolon Yokte Ku, or Nine Support Gods, will return.

However, the actual word ‘return’, sometimes translated as ‘descent’, is not intact on the monument.

….Mayan sources reference the return of these deities at the ending of each baktun [one of the Mayan calendars, a few hundred years I. length].  Hence, they are expected to emanate on Earth in 2012 too.

Who are the Bolon Yokte Ku–the Nine?  They have been variously translated as the God of Nine Strides, the Nine-Footed God, Jaguar-Foot-Tree and Nine-Dog-Tree.

They were seen as living in the Underworld and were generally described as god(s) of conflict, warfare, and are linked with dangerous transition times, social unrest, eclipses, and natural disasters like earthquakes.

It is said that at the end of a baktun, they would abandon their underworld realm and rise to the Earth’s surface, where they would do battle with the 13 deities of Heaven.

……[The] Nine Gods appeared during ceremonies that were held at the end of each baktun, the last of which occurred in 1618 AD.

The ceremonial of the baktun is described in Chapter 29 of The Book of Chilam Balam de Chumayel, a Mayan chronicle.  It provides a detailed description of the ceremonies that were performed in Merida in 1618, at the end of [the last or 12th baktun].  In total there are twenty acts, each representing one of the twenty katuns that make up a baktun cycle:

~after some initial preparations, in act 2, the bee god tied the masks of the 13 gods of Heaven to those people who were going to perform in the ceremonies.

~the actual baktun cycle was ended in act 3, whereby the Nine Gods fought, conquered and sacrificed these 13 gods.  Night had conquered day.

~the subsequent acts involved rituals to do with the election of the new officials for the new period, which in act 12, the nine gods sacrifice the Seven Pacers and count the mats, which is an initial line-up of the candidates for investiture for the coming era.

~in act 13, the 4 year-bearers reappear, in the guise of the four death gods.

~most importantly, in act 15, the nine gods announce the fate of the new era.  This fate was largely the will of the gods, which the community had to achieve during the new era.”

Philip Coppens and many others connect all of this to similar patterns and cultural ways worldwide, something for this blog to further examine over the span of this year.  What they are suggesting, in a nutshell, is the possible return os extraterrestrials who have had a guiding hand in our affairs.

Coppens’ essay can be read in full here:


The Republicans help set stage for Obama landslide…..

Even Republican leaders and pundits have called the Republican battle for the party’s nomination for President a “clown show”.

The national head to head polls now show Rick Santorum slightly ahead of Mitt Romney in his childhood state of Michigan, a state he was expected to win with ease. Conservatives have a hard time in accepting Romney as they see his prior record and statements and, upon hearing what he is saying now, conclude that he is not really one of them.

People are doing the math for the remaining hunt for delegates and odds seem to be increasing for a brokered and open convention with perhaps a late entry into the race. This has not happened for a really long time.

With the economy improving and our involvement in Afghanistqn winding down and so many other factors, the polls are showing Obama with a comfortable lead nationally as well as in ten of the eleven swing states.

Cultural geography of Ecotopia

This is the first article filed under Dispatches from Ecotopia, a mythical nation state profiled in Ernest Callenbach’s 1975 novel Ecotopia-the novel of your future (which is set in 1999).  It just so happens that I live in the heart of the setting for this novel, a place where many of the societal features portrayed in the novel have actually come to life.  The overall region is commonly noted as “cutting edge” or where major new cultural developments and changes first surface.  So, in a blog examining such notions (as some southwest Indian cultures have proposed) of a pending transition from a fourth world culture/civilization to a new fifth one with new ways, it seems logical to me that possible clues as to what this Fifth World Culture might look like would be perhaps evident first in my current backyard.

In “Ecotopia” a reporter from a newspaper in the United States is allowed full access to this new country from where he sends dispatches of what he is observing, experiencing, and thinking.  William Weston decides in the end to stay in this region, sheltered on purpose for years after seceding from the United States of America.

Here is a portion from Weston’s June 19th report filed from San Francisco:

“Where is Ecotopia going in the future?  After more than six weeks’ intensive study of the country, I find it still hazardous to guess.  There is no doubt, I have been forced to conclude, that the risky social experiments undertaken here have worked on a biological level. Ecotopian air and water are everywhere crystal clear.  The land is well cared for and productive.  Food is plentiful, wholesome, and recognizable.  All life systems are operating on a stable-state basis, and can go on doing so indefinitely.  The health and general well-being of the people are undeniable.  While the extreme decentralization and emotional openness of the society seem alien to an American at first, they too have much to be said in their favor.  In these respects, I believe, Ecotopia offers us a difficult challenge, and we have far to go to even approach their achievements.

On the other hand, these benefits have been bought at a heavy cost. Not only is the Ecotopian industrial capacity and standard of consumption markedly below ours, to a degree that would never be tolerated by Americans generally, but the Ecotopian political system rests on assumptions that I can only conclude are dangerous in the extreme…………

Under Ecotopian ideas, the era of the great nation-states, with their promise of one ultimate world-state, would fade away.  Despite our achievements of a worldwide communications network and jet travel, mankind would fly apart into small, culturally homogenous groupings….

Ecotopians argue that such separatism is desirable on ecological as well as cultural grounds—that a small regional society can exploit it’s “niche” in the world biosystem more subtly and richly and efficiently (and of course less destructively) than have the superpowers……

[Amusingly, reporter Will Weston notes in a personal diary entry, “blah, blah, blah.  Can hardly bear to re read that last column.  They’ll probably love it in New York.  Real “objective” pseudo-think, trying to conclusions at any cost…]”

Today, decades after this novel was written, federal attorneys in California districts have warned Mendocino County officials that they face prosecution over a system where medical marijuana patients can form grower cooperatives allowing large, 99 marijauna plant gardens, in exchange for fees that go into the Sheriff’s department.  While the federal government now has a policy allowing people to obtain and use marijuana as medicine, so long as they comply with state laws, the federal attorneys obviously thought the Mendocino system was a bit much with all this money involved.  The Board of Supervisors ended this system in response to the threat and returned to the old one of allowing 25 plants per parcel, no money now going to the Sheriff.

In 2004, Mendocino clearly demonstrated that it is the heart of Ecotopia, a country with a fully green/countercultural orientation, when it’s voters banned genetically engineered crops and seeds, telling Monsanto to get lost in effect.  $700,000 was spent to get voters to vote otherwise.  With 3300 counties nationwide, Mendocino stood alone in taking this measure and braced for a fight with one really big bully.

There are only about 88,000 people living in Mendocino, which has around 3500 square miles of land and 380 of water.  That is 25 people per square mile.  Median income is below national averages.

The wikipedia article on Mendocino notes:

“The county is noted for its distinctive Pacific Ocean coastline, Redwood forests, wine production, microbrews, and liberal views about the use of cannabis and support for its legalization. It is estimated that roughly two-thirds of the economy is based on the cultivation of marijuana.[1]”

What interests me about this county (in the context of this blog) are what clues are here in the unique culture geography of Mendocino for emerging cultural, economic, and political models that may significantly reshape the lives of future generations.

One thing that I think I am beginning to see more and more is a real desire and movement to de centralize in the way Will Weston described above.

A poorer county than most, with little industry, extravagant consumption (very typical in urban and suburban areas) is not so evident here.  Sadly, government services, including the ability of the Sheriff to provide protection in all corners, gives the scene here a much more primitive feel than most.  

Secession?  While that is not a looming reality, this county feels so sheltered and cut off in some ways that we might as well be divorced from the United States of America.

Already big excitement from the “real” and imaginal domains!

In tracking significant events on multiple fronts, I am learning of some very significant things happening.

There are major potential breakthroughs in our understanding the nature of reality, thanks to experiments at the Long Hadron Collider where high speed streams of protons traverse at higher energies in a nearly 27 kilometer underground circular (subnuclear) particle accelerator at the Swiss/French border.

That is just one major development in the “real” world.  This and other developing scientific story lines will be examined over the coming months.

There are also some incredible story lines going viral on the Internet. At the end of last year, people began posting videos at YouTube where very strange sounds pervading the scene being filmed are heard.  

Whether that is a major development in the “real” world, or a 
creative arts product, is something that will be examined here.  (I suspect there will be many examinations of creative story lines like this over the remaining months of this year.).  Also, I have already seen the UFO and ancient alien folks characterizing the return of Bolon Yokte as the returning of extraterrestrials.  There will be a chronicling of what is being written and said about this notion.

Big jump in UFO sighting reports

Since UFOs play a key role for many focused on 2012 imaginings, this blog will provide both regular updates on UFO reports as well as any dramatic UFO related breaking news.  At this time I am not very informed as yet on the various UFO movements and groups who have granted the year 2012 some special significance.  But, I will spend time looking into all that also.

The National UFO Reporting Center, a longstanding resource and effort by Peter Davenport from Washington State, is reporting at it’s site that “reports of red, orange, and yellow ‘fireballs’ have not abated”.  Davenport gives this overview:

“Whereas typically, NUFORC has been receiving and posting approximately 10 credible reports a day, in recent months, that volume has increased.  As an example, NUFORC received approximately fifty reports on December 31, 2011, and approximately sixty reports on the following day!  Many of these reports ….appear to address similar events, i.e. Clusters of red-, orange-, or yellow-colored lights…”

A good online news source, The Huffington Post (, apparently reports on UFOs!  They even offer emailed Weird News Alerts, something I will definitely need to sign up for!  In researching current UFO happenings, I found a Huffington Post article by reporter Lee Speigel.  His January 10th report noted that “UFO Sightings Skyrocket Into 2012”.  Spiegel quoted the Director of the largest UFO group (Mutual UFO Network, focused on investigating sighting reports) as indicating that there has been a dramatic increase in reports and, if that trend continues, “we’ll be up 50 percent” over the number of sighting reports for 2011.

Looks like there is a good enough reason, then, to track UFO reports throughout 2012!

Clint Eastwood: Halftime in America

The text of the incredible ad narrated by Clint Eastwood during the halftime in yesterday’s Super Bowl, posted at
(Detroit Free Press):

It’s halftime. Both teams are in their locker room discussing what they can do to win this game in the second half.

It’s halftime in America, too. People are out of work and they’re hurting. And they’re all wondering what they’re going to do to make a comeback. And we’re all scared, because this isn’t a game.

The people of Detroit know a little something about this. They almost lost everything. But we all pulled together, now Motor City is fighting again.

I’ve seen a lot of tough eras, a lot of downturns in my life. And, times when we didn’t understand each other. It seems like we’ve lost our heart at times. When the fog of division, discord, and blame made it hard to see what lies ahead.

But after those trials, we all rallied around what was right, and acted as one. Because that’s what we do. We find a way through tough times, and if we can’t find a way, then we’ll make one.

All that matters now is what’s ahead. How do we come from behind? How do we come together? And, how do we win?

Detroit’s showing us it can be done. And, what’s true about them is true about all of us.

This country can’t be knocked out with one punch. We get right back up again and when we do the world is going to hear the roar of our engines.

Yeah, it’s halftime America. And, our second half is about to begin.

CNBC on “Apocalypse 2012”

Last night I watched the CNBC re airing of “Apocalypse 2012”, an examination of the response of individuals, groups, and our culture to the end of the Mayan long count calendar of 5,126 years on December 21 2012.

While fairly recent religious groups, those headed by Elizabeth Claire Prophet and David Koresh were two examples given, have emphasized either some sort of pending end or entry into a new age, the current apocalyptic fever is more secularized, global, and nurtured and fueled by the Internet.

Dr. David Morrison, a space scientist from NASA’s Ames Center, observed that judging by his emails from many distressed people that there is “a convergence of perceived threats”:

~the return of an uncharted Planet X, or “Nibiru” (Sumerian reference), orbiting at a distance in a 3,600 year cycle. (At this stage, given the short time period left, this “scare” is clearly not going to manifest.)

~Solar flares. Morrison noted that there was nothing about the sun that posed a threat to people.

~Magnetic pole flip. Morrison doubts any impact to us in the event of the next flip happening.

But, at this early point in the year it is clear 2012 fever is strong. And, folks like Coast to Coast radio host George Noory are reporting
that the “2012 movement continues to grow” and that we are all in for a rough and wild roller coaster ride. Noory plans to be on air the night of December 21.

CNBC interviewed and profiled quite a few people who are engaged in various enterprises based on different takes on what specifically is supposed to happen.

One of these folks, Lawrence Joseph….author of “Apocalypse 2012”, noted in an initial interview that “our way of life is threatened seriously” and that we face a new birth mixed with joy and tears. His perceived threat was solar threats, which in a subsequent interview he saw still somewhat as a threat but not as seriously as earlier.

CNBC kept returning to Patrick Geryl to track the progress of his
effort, supported by investors who will populate his planned survivalist community in a location safe from 2000 meter high tidal waves. Patrick is from Belguim and reports that his has had nightmares for years of the coming of a massive tidal wave. He says this could be caused by solar flares reversing the earth’s rotation. His tie in to the Mayan prophecy is the last page of the famous Dresden Codex, clearly showing land and people being overwhelmed by water gushing from the mouth of a crocodile. But, as I noted in my previous article on this, no date is identified for this event. Geryl in the interview, though, said this graphic page from the Mayan codes was tied to The end of the long count calendar.

Thankfully the show DID identify the one and only surviving reference to what is to happen. This was discussed in my first article at this blog. CNBC had an archaeologist, Christopher Powell, show and explain the one Mayan inscription, from the Tortuguero site in Mexico, which he said translated basically as the “descending of the Nine support gods”

All sorts of planned and developing survivalist communities and homes were profiled. Pam Walters, promoting the return of Nibiru, prepared in West Virginia to bury underground shipping containers for safe sheltering. We already mentioned Patrick Geryl’s plans. Larry Hall’s looked the coolest of them all: a many leveled underground missle silo base, being developed into condos. One contractor, Brian Camden, openly said he thought all of this was bunk but he nevertheless was busy building bunkers for people AND businesses all over the world. And, Dennis McClung’s business was profiled in depth.

Peter Gersten, a lawyer living near Sedona and famous for dealing in cases involving UFOs and government coverrups, has some special plans for 11:11am on December 21 2012. He feels that we live in a massive computer program that will temporarily shut down at that moment and with the opening of a portal, he is going to take “a leap of faith through it” from Bell Rock near Sedona.

So…..we need to chronicle or follow what happens with all these folks! (Profiled on this CNBC show.)