Holy Old School Batman! A recent discovery has unearthed the well preserved remains of a 12,000 year old civilization! That pushes the date for known large scale collective societies of people some 6,000 years earlier than previously known. This is a big deal people.
Here’s an objective link to a powerful video from the History Channel about it.
Scholars are positing that the very rise of civilization was due to meeting the need of peole to worship – as it is clear that the Temple was created first.
This excerpt is from National Geographic’s treatment of this:
The Birth of Religion
We used to think agriculture gave rise to cities and later to writing, art, and religion. Now the world’s oldest temple suggests the urge to worship sparked civilization.
Every now and then the dawn of civilization is reenacted on a remote hilltop in southern Turkey.
The reenactors are busloads of tourists—usually Turkish, sometimes European. The buses (white, air-conditioned, equipped with televisions) blunder over the winding, indifferently paved road to the ridge and dock like dreadnoughts before a stone portal. Visitors flood out, fumbling with water bottles and MP3 players. Guides call out instructions and explanations. Paying no attention, the visitors straggle up the hill. When they reach the top, their mouths flop open with amazement, making a line of perfect cartoon O’s.
Before them are dozens of massive stone pillars arranged into a set of rings, one mashed up against the next. Known as Göbekli Tepe (pronounced Guh-behk-LEE TEH-peh), the site is vaguely reminiscent of Stonehenge, except that Göbekli Tepe was built much earlier and is made not from roughly hewn blocks but from cleanly carved limestone pillars splashed with bas-reliefs of animals—a cavalcade of gazelles, snakes, foxes, scorpions, and ferocious wild boars. The assemblage was built some 11,600 years ago, seven millennia before the Great Pyramid of Giza. It contains the oldest known temple. Indeed, Göbekli Tepe is the oldest known example of monumental architecture—the first structure human beings put together that was bigger and more complicated than a hut. When these pillars were erected, so far as we know, nothing of comparable scale existed in the world.
At the time of Göbekli Tepe’s construction much of the human race lived in small nomadic bands that survived by foraging for plants and hunting wild animals. Construction of the site would have required more people coming together in one place than had likely occurred before. Amazingly, the temple’s builders were able to cut, shape, and transport 16-ton stones hundreds of feet despite having no wheels or beasts of burden. The pilgrims who came to Göbekli Tepe lived in a world without writing, metal, or pottery; to those approaching the temple from below, its pillars must have loomed overhead like rigid giants, the animals on the stones shivering in the firelight—emissaries from a spiritual world that the human mind may have only begun to envision.
Archaeologists are still excavating Göbekli Tepe and debating its meaning. What they do know is that the site is the most significant in a volley of unexpected findings that have overturned earlier ideas about our species’ deep past. Just 20 years ago most researchers believed they knew the time, place, and rough sequence of the Neolithic Revolution—the critical transition that resulted in the birth of agriculture, taking Homo sapiens from scattered groups of hunter-gatherers to farming villages and from there to technologically sophisticated societies with great temples and towers and kings and priests who directed the labor of their subjects and recorded their feats in written form. But in recent years multiple new discoveries, Göbekli Tepe preeminent among them, have begun forcing archaeologists to reconsider.
At first the Neolithic Revolution was viewed as a single event—a sudden flash of genius—that occurred in a single location, Mesopotamia, between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers in what is now southern Iraq, then spread to India, Europe, and beyond. Most archaeologists believed this sudden blossoming of civilization was driven largely by environmental changes: a gradual warming as the Ice Age ended that allowed some people to begin cultivating plants and herding animals in abundance. The new research suggests that the “revolution” was actually carried out by many hands across a huge area and over thousands of years. And it may have been driven not by the environment but by something else entirely.
After a moment of stunned quiet, tourists at the site busily snap pictures with cameras and cell phones. Eleven millennia ago nobody had digital imaging equipment, of course. Yet things have changed less than one might think. Most of the world’s great religious centers, past and present, have been destinations for pilgrimages—think of the Vatican, Mecca, Jerusalem, Bodh Gaya (where Buddha was enlightened), or Cahokia (the enormous Native American complex near St. Louis). They are monuments for spiritual travelers, who often came great distances, to gawk at and be stirred by. Göbekli Tepe may be the first of all of them, the beginning of a pattern. What it suggests, at least to the archaeologists working there, is that the human sense of the sacred—and
the human love of a good spectacle—may have given rise to civilization itself. ….
And, if you dare (I’m not sure that I do),
here’s another take on all of this, from the people who are into “The Eurantia Book.”
In 1994, almost forty years after The Urantia Book’s 1955 publication, excavations began at the Gobekli Tepe archaeological site in Turkey. This site has produced over 50 Stonehenge-type rock carvings and other artifacts, some of which date back to at least 12,000 years ago. A full excavation to the bottom of the site has not yet occurred. The artifacts are especially inconsistent with prevailing theories about the development of civilization. Every place else in the world where ancient civilizations have built structures with enormous stones, there is also evidence that they were settled communities that practiced herding and farming. Prevailing theories about this region suggest that around 11,000 years ago, primitive man was just beginning to evolve from being a hunter-gatherer to a herder-farmer.
However, the discoveries at Gobekli Tepe are altogether consistent with The Urantia Book’s assertion that a well-developed herder-farmer civilization existed in this area, during this time period, and for more than 10,000 years previously. Additionally, there is strong evidence indicating that the site was intentionally buried about 8,000 years ago. This peculiar aspect of the Gobekli Tepe site, while difficult for archaeologists to explain, perfectly parallels The Urantia Book’s assertion that, at around this time, inferior and more barbaric tribes drove out this more peaceful and advanced, but declining, civilization.
The enormous Gobekli Tepe stones—at least 6,000 years older than Stonehenge and the pyramids—reflect a degree of cultural development and organization that defies explanation within the context of the more widely accepted theories on how civilization developed. And what further confounds scholars is that the stone structures get bigger as they get older. All of this is consistent with The Urantia Book’s version of history. It says the more advanced culture that lived in this area had been on the decline for over 10,000 years, as the result of a unique and unpredictable genetic shift that occurred in human history about 38,000 years ago.
Adding powerfully to the intrigue of this report is its interrelationship to the Adam and Eve Report and the Garden of Eden Report. These two reports involve some of the most impressive corroborations documented by UBtheNEWS. Because these three reports interrelate sequentially, it may be helpful to start at the beginning. The Adam and Eve Report, in particular, provides a foundation for appreciating The Urantia Book’s assertions about why and how a civilization with superior genetics got started around 38,000 years ago but was unable to maintain its distinctively advanced culture.
Gobekli Tepe is best known for being a discovery that defies explanation. Gobekli Tepe makes scholars reconsider the common sense reasoning behind theories on how civilization developed.
Theories about the history of human civilization are based on evidence that strongly suggests a pattern of progress, both culturally and genetically, over extended periods of time. Progression is what seems to naturally occur; retrogression is the exception. “Survival of the fittest” and successive generations building on the achievements of previous generations are the basic models for genetic and cultural progress. Retrogression occurs, but it requires a special explanation: war, changing climate, unwise cultural practices, overpopulation, something. Gobekli Tepe provides evidence of a civilization long in decline that was eventually overrun or otherwise repopulated by an inferior civilization, but scholars are reluctant to hypothesize in this direction.
What makes this report especially intriguing is that The Urantia Book, published in 1955, explains Gobekli Tepe decades before we even discovered that this mysterious site existed. The Urantia Book’s explanation is in terms of an Adam and Eve story that varies significantly from the Old Testament record, but which the authors assert is the basis for our religious traditions about Adam and Eve. This account describes them as living about 38,000 years ago and being genetically superior to the rest of humanity. The authors indicate that in some respects their descendants (“Adamites”) received decreasing benefits from this upgraded genetic heritage. This, along with migrations and increasing degrees of intermixing, is said to have eventually eliminated their status as a recognizably separate race.
According to The Urantia Book:
The Adamites greatly excelled the surrounding peoples in cultural achievement and intellectual development. They produced the third alphabet and otherwise laid the foundations for much that was the forerunner of modern art, science, and literature. Here in the lands between the Tigris and Euphrates they maintained the arts of writing, metalworking, pottery making, and weaving and produced a type of architecture that was not excelled in thousands of years.(1)
They [Adam and Eve’s children] were . . . long-lived, albeit longevity gravitated toward the human norm with each succeeding generation.(2)
Both the physical and spiritual visions of Adam and Eve were far superior to those of the present-day peoples. . . . These special senses were not so acutely present in their children and tended to diminish with each succeeding generation.(3)
Scholars are straining to come up with interpretations for Gobekli Tepe for a very good reason. They do well to avoid getting overly creative with their speculations and interpretations of archaeological and anthropological evidence and Gobekli Tepe requires thinking outside the box. With this in mind, we now turn to quotes from a variety of sources that describe and try to explain the mystery of Gobekli Tepe.
The German archaeologist who has been excavating the site since 1994 sums up four more months of digging. “In 14 years, we have uncovered barely five percent of what is here. There are decades of work ahead,” Klaus Schmidt says.(4)
The new discoveries are finally beginning to reshape the slow-moving consensus of archeology. Göbekli Tepe is “unbelievably big and amazing, at a ridiculously early date,” according to Ian Hodder, director of Stanford’s archeology program. Enthusing over the “huge great stones and fantastic, highly refined art” at Göbekli, Hodder—who has spent decades on rival Neolithic [New Stone age] sites—says: “Many people think that it changes everything…It overturns the whole apple cart. All our theories were wrong.”(5)
[T]he structures not only predate pottery, metallurgy, and the invention of writing or the wheel; they were built before the so-called Neolithic Revolution, i.e., the beginning of agriculture and animal husbandry around 9,000 BC. But the construction of Göbekli Tepe implies organization of an order of complexity not hitherto associated with pre-Neolithic societies.(6)
Though not as large as Stonehenge—the biggest circle is 30 yards across, the tallest pillars 17 feet high—the ruins are astonishing in number. Last year Schmidt found his third and fourth examples of the temples. Ground-penetrating radar indicates that another 15 to 20 such monumental ruins lie under the surface. Schmidt’s German-Turkish team has also uncovered some 50 of the huge pillars, including two found in his most recent dig season that are not just the biggest yet, but, according to carbon dating, are the oldest monumental artworks in the world.(7)…….
I don’t know about you, but
this. blows. my. mind.
and I think I like it. : )
Wolsey is the author of