UFO Conjecture(s)

Sunday, March 04, 2012

UFOs and Çatalhöyük


Copyright 2012, InterAmerica, Inc.

A review in The Atlantic [March, 2012, Page 74 ff.], lauding Ian Hodder’s new book (pictured above), published by Thames and Hudson, tells of a Neolithic settlement extant 9400 years ago:
Çatalhöyük.

The settlement of about 8000 people, who built and lived in mud-brick houses, was odd for an umber of reasons….

The inhabitants built their houses so close together that entry had to be through the roofs. The propinquity didn’t allow for streets or walking paths.

The houses also acted as cemeteries; the dead buried beneath the floors or in the hearths.

“The inhabitants decorated their interior walls with plaster reliefs and with elaborate murals depicting wild animals…and such cheery scenes as vultures swooping down on headless people.

They regularly – annually or even monthly – replastered their walls and floors, covering these bizarre and beautiful murals…creating a blank canvas for new pictures.”

This compulsive, obsessive behavior was not extrinsic to the Çatalhöyük society, but endemic.

The people didn’t create their settlement near arable land but chose, rather, a site that was an insect-infested marshland that had a proximity to the dense clays they needed to make the plaster for their murals and drawings.

The whole purpose of the Çatalhöyük life-style and existence was the ongoing creation of those murals – nothing else, Hodder conjectures, mattered more to them.

As with the Tassili and other cave-wall paintings we’ve inserted at this blog, one wonders what possessed these primitive peoples to place “art” about anything else in their lives.

To use the Çatalhöyük model, can we conjecture that those who pilot or inhabit UFOs also are obsessed with something – not art, but the archeological wonders that Earth presents and which is unknown in their environments.

The intimations of extraterrestrial intrusions that Ancient Astronaut theorists see in cave paintings may indicate an obsession by galactic or dimensional visitors not unlike that of the Çatalhöyük people.

That is, beings, alien or Earthian, have obsessions that make little sense to “normal” people, which keeps archeologists and “ufologists” flummoxed.

Can we ever really know what primitive man was thinking, or what possible extraterrestrial visitors have as a raison d’être?

RR

19 Comments:

  • If such creatures existed, I think they would be interested in the mythologies that prompted them, as metaphors for the human condition.
    Another view is to consider the many mythologies surrounding "UFOs". Consider a real UFO monitored much the same regarding this subject as a portion of their analysis of our species. The fears and desirous baggage of expectations, all of which are exaggerations of anticipation, overly weighted. Perhaps their tact would be to diminish such expectations, but then this is impossible to do. So, they are left with few options unless they are foisted voluntarily into the cat bird's seat of Kingship, which we animals as packs ( tribal etc) always seek in our societies.
    So, any direct contact would be difficult if not impossible based on what they observed in our artistic expression of myth and metaphor.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • Bruce...

    Huh?

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • If aliens exist, they would note from time immemorial we worshiped other creatures of nature for their prowess that we lacked ( panthers, wolves, etc) in the context of their survivability in terms of skill and as a consequence they then became our demigods of nature that shamans would try to induce that spirit or skill into themselves and others. This is the impetus for many a neolithic painting. By recreating the creature through wall or cave art, this had a shamanic "magic" to it as sacred art..to them. There was no monolithic Christian God.

    And so...

    Would the ET creature be worshiped in the same manner, both feared and to be emulated, and would not ET know this from our earliest behaviors we seek "superior creatures" or alpha creatures to lead us as "pack" or social creatures?
    I don't think we have changed that much since the days of cave or wall paintings, we worship I Phones instead of panthers, as a power providing antidote to a lack of self awareness.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • Oh, I get it now Bruce...

    (Yah, sure.)

    You have to realize Bruce, buddy, that you are often casting pearls before swine.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • Çatalhöyük" may not have been built close to food sources because the people there were more interested in the obsidian trade. The town is located on a trade route. Lots of the old settlements were built on trade routes rather than for access to food resources. Jericho is another example.

    What I know about prehistoric "religion", at least in the Old World (the swath from the Balkans to the Indus) is that, at least in the western half, the beings who were "worshipped" were the "worshipers'" dead.

    This is at times referred to as the Death Cult or, better, the Skull Cult, in the literature.

    What Rich wrote recently: that which was experienced but not perceived, were, I think, ghosts rather than animals or aliens.

    Just about all of the speculation about prehistoric (and early historic) "religion" is unsupported speculation (a prehistoric image of a woman is not proof of goddess worship).

    About various images of non-human or semi-human critters. One can discern evidence of costuming and especially masks. Among other things, religion and theater have the same sources. Just sayin'.


    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger don, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • Don:

    Again you stray from the point and zero in on a side-bar.

    The important element, as I see it, is the obsessive behavior, not the obsidian trade, of which there is no mention or evidence -- no obsidian was found, but lots of murals, and an apparent compulsion to make murals.

    Yes, I know that we all want to exhibit our astute knowledge about things we've studied or read, and UFO UpDates is replete with such showing off.

    But I'd be very happy if we can stick to the point(s) that I'm trying to make, rather than go off on tangential, ego-infused journeys.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • "But I'd be very happy if we can stick to the point(s) that I'm trying to make, rather than go off on tangential, ego-infused journeys."

    Oh, sorry. You know, Rich, you are unlikely to get the deep, scholarly discussions you claim to want, by dissing anyone who writes a complex sentence or actually knows what they are talking about.

    Thanks for reminding me. I guess I've become a pest.

    Regards,

    Don



    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger don, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • Don:

    You're not a pest, by a long shot, but you are often a distraction.

    You're not alone in that.

    Everyone finds a scintilla of information from which they can hang their ego-stroking hat, and they do so.

    Such endeavors merely confuse the topic at hand and are irrelevant.

    Your obsidian information was interesting but meant for another venue I think....something about trade routes and why primitive peoples settled along them.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • "Your obsidian information was interesting but meant for another venue I think....something about trade routes and why primitive peoples settled along them."

    The site *is* on the ancient obsidian trade route. Maybe they didn't build where they did for the plastering materials, but for that reason.

    The only image I recall from the site was the volcano one. There is no volcano in the area. The assumption was that it was a painting of the place where the people originated -- the old country, so to speak -- on the theory that when sites over-populated relative to the food supply, people left and established a new site. The town and volcano in the mural depicted where the settlers came from.

    If you want to know about such an obscure subject, rather than schoolmaster it on this forum, asking us amateurs and hobbiests to respond on-point to your interests, just read the academics instead. They've got the funding and the slave labor available to gather info and have an on-point opinion.

    However, in this venue, you get what you get. No one who knows anything worth knowing about it is reading you. So, we're all you've got.

    Find an image anywhere from anytime and you'll find homo sapiens sapiens was there. It is what we do.

    I could be more on-point if this were about Southwest rock art.

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger don, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • Don,

    You're off point again, I'm afraid.

    The murals and obsidian trade are not what I'm driving at in the posting.

    It's about the compulsion to muralize the walls -- the obsessive behavior.

    See the tag line for the UFO association.

    And you are not all we've got, I have to report.

    A display of our blog stats, sent to Nick Redfern and Anthony Bragalia the other day, shows that we are not alone with you and a few others here.

    Moreover, as you know from the Anomalist site and don't know, apparently, is that we connect elsewhere with our web-sites, in academic venues, from which I often get suggestions for what to input here.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • Oh, and Don...

    You would do well to read my newest post above, about Pagels and the Book of Revelation.

    It pertains to our discussion.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • Rich: "It's about the compulsion to muralize the walls -- the obsessive behavior."

    So it might seem to us to be "compulsive" or "obsessive", but we don't know, nor does anyone. Whoever gets the funding and the publication gets to be the expert and set the agenda -- until someone else does. That's academia.

    I recall one archaeologist's comment about a late Ubaid/early Sumerian site...there was a lot of activity, but we really have no idea what it was all about.

    "You would do well to read my newest post above, about Pagels and the Book of Revelation."

    I'd rather not. I do not consider her a good authority, although I haven't read that book.

    I haven't read your other websites. Too many of them, for one thing, and not on-point to my interests. Just no time available for it all.

    I'll check in on this thread to see whether anyone who knows anything about the subject posts here.

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger don, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • May I suggest, Don, that you buy the Hodder book or borrow it from your local library.

    Hodder posits the view I presented, as the Atlantic article makes clear.

    If you don't want the book, get the magazine and read the book review.

    You may be enlightened, and realize, perhaps, that my pithy (not pissy) post grasps the book's thesis.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • My problem with Hodder is the same as I have with Pagels. I don't subscribe his school of interpretation. If you actually get informed commenters, you may end up with more than you bargained for. Why not just offer a place for Lance and Rudiak to chat about Roswell? Same effect, I think.

    About mud buildings. They deteriorate. Even in a dry climate they have to be patched up often, and after 20 years or so have to be demolished and replaced.

    I'm not surprised that mud buildings built near a marsh had to be replastered very often.

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger don, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • OMG!

    Don, you can really be thick sometimes, and obtuse.

    I'm moving on.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • "Don, you can really be thick sometimes, and obtuse."

    Probably. I don't follow your concerns easily and apparently in this case, not at all.

    Maybe its because burying the dead under the floors, having to constantly replaster, replacing fixtures and art often, are commonplaces of that era and for thousands of years after -- and thousands of years before.

    There is not much about those things that are unique to Çatalhöyük, except maybe the pueblo-style building.

    I honestly don't get the point of your post.

    If in fact "Hodder conjectures" that painting murals is all that mattered to those people, well...what can I say. He's an idiot.

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger don, at Sunday, March 04, 2012  

  • 'Can we ever really know what primitive man was thinking, or what possible extraterrestrial visitors have as a raison d’être?'

    It's possible to infer what primitive folk were thinking through a number of methods. One that's particularly apparent is their continued presence in this world. For example, the art and oral histories of Andaman Islanders can show us the *themes* that preoccupy primitive peoples and then be compared with peers on other land masses.

    I understand the point you're trying to make and wanted to point out that, although there are gaps, our knowledge of ancient cultures needn't be taken as a tabula rasa.

    Your main point (we can't know what would motivate possible visitors) is hard to dispute. For every speculated or well-reasoned concept there immediately appears a counter-argument.

    At the same time, it hasn't stopped some guys from speculating their asses off. The space opera silliness that involves Andromedans breaking treaties with Zetas whilst the Galactic Federation waits patiently for us to ban the bomb and chant Aum is believed by some...mischievously or otherwise.

    Incidentally, Mike Swords wrote about the possible motivations behind the ETH. It's interesting stuff as usual from one of the quiet men of ufology - http://www.nicap.org/papers/swords_halfcentury.pdf

    By Blogger Kandinsky, at Monday, March 05, 2012  

  • Mike Swords is, indeed, a valuable UFO resource, Kandinsky.

    Thanks for the URL to his PDF.

    That said, I find his conjectures in it to be a little in-the-box (not outside-the-box) but not irrational, like other hypothetical ramblings, including my own.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, March 05, 2012  

  • I wouldn't be surprised if he feels the same way. It was written a decade ago and we all seem to be more adventurous in our speculations as time moves on.

    Some of the articles on the Big Study blog are enthusiastically adventurous. One way or another, many of his posts have resurfaced and informed my own thoughts long after reading them.

    'We know where you live' is one that has developed a resonance when it was too 'off-beam' upon first reading. The connotations are related to your comments, but it takes some courage to explore them...

    http://www.cufos.org/swords2.pdf

    BTW - I'm missing the blogspot e-mail replies. Damn recession must have made them too expensive to maintain.

    By Blogger Kandinsky, at Monday, March 05, 2012  

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