This book needs no introduction, there is already numerous reviews on the Internet and I can only agree that this is an amazing piece of work.
Immediately I drew similarities between Gordon’s writing style and Peter Grey’s in Lucifer: princeps, in fact Gordon references Lucifer: princeps near the end of the book.
Initially I wasn’t going to buy this book, maybe I’d pick up the paperback sometime down the road but the pre-release blurb on the book just didn’t spark my interest. However, when the initial reviews started to come it really got my interest in the subject “A pre-history of the spirits” just docent do it justice. If anything it seems a bit New Age, airy fairy, for a book that is as far removed from the New Age thinking as possible.
The initial chapters are interesting enough but it was when he started to describe the possible “Sundaland” that I really started to see his narrative. I have sailed many time through the South China Sea, Sulu Sea, Celebes Sea, Java Sea area to have not noticed on the charts the possibility that some time in the distant past that this area may have been above sea level. The fact that Gordon picked this up and then went on with a hypothesis that humanity thrived in this area, was technological advanced and communicated with, traveled to distant parts of the planet was an eye opener.
How does Gordon come to this startling conclusion? By the obvious examination of genetic data. A dangerous subject which as he points out in the book has been used in the past by cultures to exert their racial superiority over others, but also by the legends, folk tales, traces of ancient history which is left engraved on the wall of temples and the ancient people’s observation of the stars and the similarity in the myths built around them. The fact is we may find Asian shaped skull’s in ancient middle eastern burials. There maybe traces of Asian DNA in Egypt, but the most striking this is how similar their star lore was. The names may change and be adapted for a different culture but the underlying mythos is the same.
The typical scientific explanation is of a single point evolution and spreading outwards from this point. What Gordon is offering in Star.Ships is that human evolution did not occur in one single place, that in fact it evolved simultaneously at many locations, that these locations traded, communicated, with one another and that technologically they were far more advanced that modern science will give them credit for. For example Gobekle Tepi at around 12,000 years old displays knowledge of the stars well before what science previously attributed to primitive civilisations.
One of the most interesting parts in the book is where he presents Davidovits theory on the construction of the pyramids which if it can be proven would also explain the construction of the Rapa Nui’s moai on Easter Island. Thousands of miles apart but a possibility of a shared technological link. As he points out in the book we know the Romans used wet setting cements to lay bridge foundations, but where did the Romans get the technology from?
This book, like Lucifer: princeps, requires more than one reading, presents many co-existing narratives for the evolution of humans and does not solely present the physical evidence but also examines the metaphysical. It presents a unique way of examining evolution and one that requires the integration of archeology and mysticism. Just like when Schliemann when looking for Troy, he didn’t discount the ancient myths are pure fiction but actually used them as factual evidence. Similarly Gordon in this brilliant work Gordon describes how we should look at the bigger picture, the beliefs, the cosmology of our ancestors along with the archaeology to fully understand them. Our history is written in the stars.
I managed all that with out mentioning Typography once!
P.S. Its Scarlet Imprint, the typography is impeccable.