Institutional Delusion

Americans are often derided by foreigners for having a big country, and tiny, closed minds. There was a time when I would’ve found that offensive, but more and more I find it to be true. While most people start out liberal as youths and become more conservative over time, I find myself walking backwards on that path. Oh, I’m still against confiscatory taxes and in favor of individual freedom. I’m just more open-minded about things I don’t understand. Instead of my perspective shrinking as I approach the destination, it is expanding as I look back on a larger horizon. It seems that when you learn more you end up knowing less and less. And the further you go not seeing the surprises that lie ahead, the more shocked you are. Occultists have a belief in doing things backwards, but my metaphor is not an endorsement of the occult. “Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar,” right? That’s Freud, by the way.
A couple of years ago I discovered a fringe archeological theory that civilization is much older than we think. There are people smarter than me that believe the great megalithic monuments of antiquity may have been built by even earlier civilizations. Since they don’t ascribe to the theory of “Ancient Aliens” popularized by The History Channel in recent years, they have another idea. What if our current society doesn’t represent the pinnacle of human intellect? Could it be possible that there was an advanced civilization before the Biblical Flood? It doesn’t sound as crazy as aliens and panspermia (look it up) if you ask me. We already know that history seems to cycle politically, technologically, and morally. What if this cycle is just bigger than we currently accept? Is that such a stretch? The Flood story is not just found in the Bible. It spans most of the cultures of the world. Nearly all cultures have stories of a great flood with just a few survivors. Those survivors could have passed down the knowledge needed to build  the pyramids of antiquity, which are scattered around the world, not just in Egypt. Maybe the Egyptian ones were turned into tombs only after their original purpose had been lost to time. Perhaps they were as mysterious to the Pharaohs as they are to us.

One of the more recent authors I’ve been exploring, John Anthony West, thinks that water erosion on the Sphinx, which he’s had studied by geologists, means that it is much older than the 4500 years it is credited with. If this were ever accepted as true, it would re-write our entire understanding of human history. Most of academia rejects the idea, but how interesting to think that something so simple could shake the very foundations of civilization. That’s likely why academics discard the thought. The books they’ve written would be invalidated; their lectures pointless. And this returns us to the close-mindedness discussed above. There is an institutional rejection of unorthodox ideas that is almost frightening when you think about it. It’s been too long, and I’m not going to dig up the research because it doesn’t matter (though I did try)… Several years ago I heard the story of a world class, leading cardiologist, who rejected the catastrophic effects of cholesterol on the heart. He argued that inflammation was more the culprit for heart patients, and that the changes in diet and use of statin drugs might be doing more harm than good. I’m not a doctor, and I don’t know all the merits of the argument, but I do know that the man was not a quack. He was educated at a leading university, and had something like thirty years of practice under his belt. The reason I heard of it was the uproar it caused for him to even make the suggestion that his hypothesis be studied. It challenged the multi-billion dollar paradigm of modern medicine, so the machine worked overtime to marginalize the man. Maybe he was right, but we’ll likely never know. We live in a time when our institutions are more important than knowledge, so renegade thinkers are silenced more than they are studied.
The average person has about a thimble full of knowledge in an ocean of questions. Once we get the thimble filled up, we just stop asking questions. We live in an information age that allows us to access more knowledge than the Ancient Library of Alexandria with the touch of a button. Rather than letting our institutions tell us everything, we should individually seek out the truth for ourselves. Fiction is boring. Reality is where the fun is.