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A NHNE Special Article:

High-Tech Origins Challenged - Again

Friday, March 7, 1997
(From News Brief 51)
By David Sunfellow & James Gregory




Copyright 1997 By NewHeavenNewEarth
Published By NewHeavenNewEarth / nhne@nhne.com

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High-Tech Origins Challenged - Again
By David Sunfellow & James Gregory

Many people have promoted the idea that our current civilization was not the first in Earth's history to reach high levels of technological development. These people point to the great pyramids of Egypt, the massive statues on Easter Island, the towering pillars of Stonehenge, the razorblade-tight stonework of Machu Pichu as proof that a highly-advanced civilization preceded our own.

How valid are these views? Aside from the fact that very few of the theories agree with one another (one claims the pyramids were built by Atlanteans while others say that extraterrestrials, or inter-dimensional beings, or time travelers, or hollow-Earth dwellers did the handiwork), ongoing archeological research is beginning to give the credit for these ancient archeological wonders to our lowly, non-technological ancestors.

In News Brief 9, we reported that archeologists had determined that the huge heads on Easter Island were built by the natives of the island after all. Using DNA samples, geneologists were also able to determine that the Easter Islanders themselves were of Polynesian ancestry, rather than genetic mutants from distant galaxies.

In November 1994, NHNE published a Special Report on "The Great Pyramid and the Sphinx." In that report we detailed how NOVA, an American NATIONAL PUBLIC TELEVISION show, hired Mark Lehner, one of the world's leading experts on Egyptology, to construct a scaled-down version of the Great Pyramid using ancient building techniques recorded in ancient Egyptian temples. Working with a master stone mason, Lehner's attempt was successful. Lehner had begun his work in Egypt as a firm believer in the views presented by Edgar Cayce (that the Great Pyramid and other, as yet undiscovered buildings, were built by Atlanteans). But after years of searching for evidence to support Cayce's claims and even writing books that championed Cayce's Atlantean world view, Lehner was forced to conclude that Cayce was wrong -- the spectacular monuments of ancient Egypt had been built by ancient Egyptians, not Atlanteans, Lemurians, or some other highly-advanced culture from Earth or elsewhere.

Recently, NOVA completed a new series called "Secrets of Lost Empires." For this series of four one-hour specials, NOVA hired teams of experts to visit Stonehenge, the Inca ruins of Machu Pichu, the obelisks of Egypt, and the Coliseum of Rome to see if they could reconstruct these ancient monuments using the tools and resources of the time period in which they were built. (We do not deal with the Coliseum in this article because its construction technique is not shrouded in the same mystery as the other monuments.)

In the "Obelisk" special, Lehner was once again accompanied by the two men that appeared in the earlier NOVA Pyramid special, as well as other experts who had been hired for this particular show. Although Lehner and company were hampered by time constraints and poor planning, they were again able to demonstrate that ancient Egyptians possessed the knowledge and resources necessary to construct and later erect their giant obelisks. In this segment, Lehner showed how hard round stones were used to cut and shape the giant obelisks, some standing 110 feet high and weighing over 100 tons. Erecting the huge stones was more problematic, and in the special they never succeeded in standing a full-sized one on end. However, their technique of using a notched base stone, a ramp, ropes and an A-frame tripod would have worked if they had had more time to work out the technical details. The huge stones were dragged over the ground using rollers and floated on the Nile using sturdy freight barges.

The experts featured in the "Inca" segment were more successful. They were able to duplicate Incan building techniques, cutting and positioning stones as tightly as those found in Machu Pichu and other Inca ruins. As in Egypt, in the absence of iron tools, they used the time-consuming method of small, hard rocks to cut and shape the stone blocks. Fitting the stone blocks required nothing more complicated than a good eye, patience, and a mechanical scribing tool. Modern-day experts were able to determine that the blocks were maneuvered along cobble roads simply with ropes and plenty of manpower. Equally impressive was the speed and ease with which the local natives built a 110-foot-long rope bridge out of grass. The bridge was built in three days over a 60-foot-deep gorge and was strong enough to carry four men and two llamas. While the archeologists, architects, stone masons, and local natives featured in the NOVA special were able to successfully use ancient techniques to solve Incan mysteries, a college professor from Minnesota who believed the Incas used high-tech methods to build their impressive structures was less successful. Claiming that the Inca's had used gold parabolic mirrors to melt their stones with the rays of the sun, the Minnesota Geoscience professor was barely able to make a popsicle stick smoke.

The most impressive of NOVA'S four new segments was "Stonehenge." In this special, NOVA's experts were able to drag a massive 20-ton stone over hilly terrain using ropes, plenty of manpower and greased wooden tracks. Standing the monolith on end could not accomplished with the use of ropes and manpower alone, but after some experimentation, the feat was achieved by the addition of a huge A-frame to increase the pulling power of the ropes. Placing a six-ton lintel stone on top of two 20-foot monoliths proved not to be as much a challenge as anticipated. A ramp was built to the top of the two standing stones, and the lintel was dragged up wooden tracks using the same A-frame technique used to get the standing stones vertical. The biggest problem was getting the lintel to stop once it reached the top of the stones and not keep on going taking workers with it. Levers were used to used to move the lintel the last few inches into exact position. It was a beautiful sight to behold!

While NOVA's current special did not clear up all the mysteries associated with these ancient sites (no explanation, for instance, was offered as to how the ancients were able to come up with their precise mathematical and astronomical calculations), it did make it clear that these monuments were built by ancient, non-technological cultures. The evidence, according to NOVA's experts, was plain to see, and easily duplicated if one had the time, the people, and the expertise necessary for the job.


 


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