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  • #16
    Originally posted by Xander67 View Post
    the two photos above are not rainclouds, so quick to dissmiss. As I said, I think it is possible and I agree there is no evidence supporting it but there are things left behind by our predeceasors that give reason to at least be open minded about it.
    The two photos above are too small to make anything out.

    I'm open-minded about plenty of things. 9th century Norwegians in Dublin may have been recreating Irish noble architecture as a status symbol - there's not much evidence of it, but there's a scant bit recently uncovered, so I'm open-minded about it. Neolithic Anatolians may have had more developed religious systems than previously believed - there's not much evidence of it, but there's a scant bit recently uncovered, so I'm open-minded about it.

    There's no evidence for "ancient astronauts", despite decades of high-profile (and often well-funded) searching by pseudoscientists. It's a theory that's been put forth to make money and denigrate non-Europeans, it's inherently unscientific, and I see no reason to be anymore open-minded about it than I am about the possibility that Obama is actually the Abominable Snowman or that my left foot contains a piece of the True Cross hidden there centuries ago by Doc Brown and Marty.

    Open minds are wonderful, until your brain slides out.
    JFGI

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Tiberias View Post
      Open minds are wonderful, until your brain slides out.
      My mother says this very same thing too me all the time. I chuckle everytime I see this=)
      I see the possiblities that are raised from the idea of visitors from another galaxy. The one thing that does make me think is why the sudden explosion of human advancement. What was the catacylst(sp?) that caused us to go from being content with just living from hand to mouth and moving with the herds too farming and agriculture, to putting roots down and developing towns and cities. I am not saying that the only answer is Aliens of course. There isn't a whole lot of evidence to back this up, but to me Something had to have happened. This is what interests me, why the change from what ancient people had done for so long to starting what would becoming what we are today?
      I like the idea of Aliens, its a fancy idea no? But, there is probably a simpler no less spectacular reason for all of it. Well I hope this made some sense. This is a facinating topic to me and I love hearing everyones thoughts.

      Cheers,

      Danielle

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      • #18
        Originally posted by RocknRoll_Goddess85 View Post
        My mother says this very same thing too me all the time. I chuckle everytime I see this=)
        I see the possiblities that are raised from the idea of visitors from another galaxy. The one thing that does make me think is why the sudden explosion of human advancement. What was the catacylst(sp?) that caused us to go from being content with just living from hand to mouth and moving with the herds too farming and agriculture, to putting roots down and developing towns and cities. I am not saying that the only answer is Aliens of course. There isn't a whole lot of evidence to back this up, but to me Something had to have happened. This is what interests me, why the change from what ancient people had done for so long to starting what would becoming what we are today?
        I like the idea of Aliens, its a fancy idea no? But, there is probably a simpler no less spectacular reason for all of it. Well I hope this made some sense. This is a facinating topic to me and I love hearing everyones thoughts.

        Cheers,

        Danielle
        What's "sudden" about several thousand years of technological and social development?

        First of all, I would like to make it clear that the development of agriculture and urbanization are two very, very different and generally distinct processes.

        The development of agriculture required two primary criteria. The first is a suitable environment - climatically stable, fairly temperate, with wildlife and plants capable of being domesticated fairly easily, etc. This finally appeared at the end of the last glacial period. The second is a suitable toolkit - hominids spent millions of years slowly developing better and better tools, and the rate of that development increased over time (presumably in tandem with increased brainpower and the ability to communicate symbolically), until finally we had moved on from Olduwan "choppers" to Acheulian handaxes and Levalois points to the Mesolithic/Neolithic toolkits which made agricultural work feasible (microliths, groundstone digging tools, etc.). A tertiary criteria was a population density sufficient to make settling down relatively attractive compared to competing for herds and foraging.

        When these three criteria were finally met, a very slow process of domestication began, taking thousands of years in Eurasia and often not occurring at all elsewhere (much of the Americas, for instance).

        Urbanization requires the large (albeit unstable) food supply that agriculture can provide, but is itself an incredibly complex and distinct process. In northern Europe, for instance, small villages and hamlets are identifiable at least 1500 years ago (many thousands of years after the arrival of agriculture), but it took hundreds of years for villages to give way to small towns and trading centers (what Hodges calls the emporia of the early Carolingian period) and then, eventually, something recognizable as a city. These changes were closely tied, not to extraterrestrial visits, but to the development of a social elite whose wealth and influence could be exerted to centralize populations in an effort to increase non-agricultural production of trade goods and better assert control of a territory's socioeconomic life. So in Norway, for instance, towns are barely visible in the 900's but suddenly sprout up here and there by the Central Middle Ages when a unified, powerful monarchy is established (and when a unified, powerful Church appears on the scene and behaves in a similar manner). Roughly speaking, these are the sorts of factors spurring the development of urban centers worldwide, and in just about every case I can think of, they spurred them very slowly.
        Last edited by Tiberias; December 7th, 2010, 06:24 PM.
        JFGI

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        • #19
          Well, I see your point there, but what I find rather amazing was that we existed as humans for 100,000 years and only developed anything recognizable as civilization within the last ten thousand. I don't know that "aliens" had anything to do with that, or if there were earlier failed civilizations that we haven't yet found, or something along those lines, but I just don't see how or why humans could exist for 100,000 years and only develop civilization in the last 1/10 of that time, and AFAIK never have a failed system.

          Maybe I missed something, but it seems strange to me.

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          • #20
            What is "civilization"? And what do you mean by a "failed system"?

            Pointing to timescales as evidence of irregularities or outside influence is far from reliable (or meaningful). Humans have only existed for a few dozen millenia out of the BILLIONS of years the Earth has existed. Should we then postulate that something's just not right there and some outside intereference must have pushed humans into existence? What about mammals? They've been around a fraction of the time fish have. Are mammals the result of alien interference? Personal computers have existed for a couple decades but the bow and arrow and iron smelting and other forms of post-Paleolithic technology have been around for thousands of years. Did ET give us the microchip and the Commodore64?

            As for "why now", again, I'd suggest that it's largely a matter of environmental factors coming together in just the right way - stable, temperate climates, growing populations leading to increased competition, hominid anatomy finally allowing for rapid transmission and development of abstract concepts, etc. There's no mystery, just a complicated network of facts to consider.
            Last edited by Tiberias; December 15th, 2010, 04:07 PM.
            JFGI

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            • #21
              Originally posted by RocknRoll_Goddess85 View Post
              So I recently started reading about possible alien contact from ancient history. I find that idea pretty fascinating and was thrilled to see that the History channel has a show called Ancient Aliens. What do you think about the show and the thought behind it.
              I find the show and the whole idea pretty insulting, actually. They almost never do anything on actual history and when they do it's this tabloid crap. There's a little thing in the history field called presentism. Very basically, it's imposing current ideas or values on past cultures. This is what's at work when we see pictures of spaceships in hieroglyphs and such. To eyes steeped in the pop culture of the late 20th and early 21 centuries, the image looks like a spaceship. To the people who actually made the image it looked like something else. Another example is people in the current age of instant gratification finding the idea of people spending years building things like the pyramids with simple copper tools (or Stonehenge with even lower levels of technology) and raw manpower so incomprehensible that they're more willing to believe in alien intervention than human determination.
              "I would rather make the gravest of mistakes than surrender my own judgement." -- Cora Munroe in Last of the Mohicans

              "Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." -- Conan the Barbarian in "Tower of the Elephant" by Robert E. Howard

              "Moral outrage has little effect on a cat." -- Garrison Keillor

              "There aren't many problems than can't be fixed
              with $700 and a .30-06." -- Jeff Cooper. Or maybe it was his daughter Lindy. I can't remember.

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              • #22
                Xan hon that last bottom pic there looks like the top half of a boob & a nipple.

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