Monday, October 29, 2007


So often we see ourselves as a lonely, cultural pinnacle, superior beyond all comparison. But if recent excavations at Stonehenge offer anything, they put our era in perspective, reminding us of an unbroken lineage shared across continents and cultures. We are simply an extension of an ancient age, living now in the next lost civilization.

This is from an article entitled Stonehenges all around us published in the L.A. Times. The author, Craig Childs, invites us to look around, not only at the numerous Neolithic sites that have been discovered around the world, but at the patterns of our own, current civilization. There are similarities. If you think about, why shouldn't there be similarities? After all, we're members of the same species that built Stonehenge and other, similar sites.

Step out of your house and you might notice your street is fixed on a cardinal grid: north, south, east, west. This pattern defines many American and European cities, as well as Neolithic sites such as Anyang in China and the Mexican city of Teotihuacan.

Looking at the way ancient people assembled themselves, archeologists see cults and primitive, celestial religions. But how primitive were these people's beliefs, and how different from them are we?
The same kind of architecture can be seen in Washington, where countless astronomical alignments are constructed into the Capitol and its surrounding buildings and monuments. Most recently, Gerald Ford joined a long line of presidents whose bodies have lain in state inside the majestic, symmetrical Rotunda. Will future archeologists imagine the worship of ancient leaders whose bodies were kept within circular chambers before burial?

Something to think about.