Sunday, September 10, 2017

Worlds in Collision

bibliotecapleyades |  The ancient civilization of Egypt was nearly destroyed in a cosmic catastrophe that endangered the entire planet, according to Velikovsky. Everywhere, huge resources were devoted to study of the skies. It's widely known that ancient civilizations in Asia, the Americas, Europe and the Middle East were highly advanced in astronomy.
While we accept this as a common feature of our past,
  • Why were so many people interested in the study of the movements of the planets?
  • Why is the alignment of astronomical instruments found in Babylon 2.5 degrees out from the present alignment of the Earth?
  • Why did calendars constructed between the middle of the second millennium BCE * and 800 BCE have 360 days and months of thirty days?
  • Why do even earlier calendars have days, months and years of different lengths again?
* Before the Common Era

Velikovsky's answer was that the Earth and Mars had been involved in repeated near collisions with a gigantic comet since our recorded history began. The events described in the Exodus and in Egyptian papyri are a vivid description of an age in chaos—plagues, turmoil and darkness, and the flight of the Hebrews from Egypt toward a "column of fire" in Sinai.

The Earth was momentarily slowed down and its axis slightly altered as the comet passed by. Electrostatic forces caused discharges to arc between the Earth and the comet turning the skies to fire and the forests to flame. The crust was rent, volcanoes erupted, earthquakes rocked and darkness enveloped the world—the time of the Exodus.
Seven hundred years later Isaiah, Joel and Amos described another series of upheavals; the Sun appeared to stand still in the sky. Although slightly dislodged from its axis and orbit again, the Earth fared better this second time.
These were, in fact, the last two acts of a cosmic drama; the earliest act of which we have records is called The Deluge.
All cosmological theories assumed that the planets have evolved in their places for billions of years... Venus was formerly a comet and joined the family of planets within the memory of mankind... We claim that the Earth's orbit changed more than once, and with it the length of the year; that the geographic position of the terrestrial axis and its astronomical direction changed repeatedly and that at a recent date the polar star was in the constellation of the Great Bear.
—Worlds in Collision, p. 361
Velikovsky believed that the origin of the comet that was responsible for changes in the Earth's orbit was in the proto-star we know as Jupiter. This idea outraged the scientific community. But his theories about the natures of Jupiter and Venus have not yet been proven wrong. He said that because Venus was younger than the other planets, its surface temperature would be much hotter and its atmosphere denser than astronomers believed; these predictions were proven correct.

He predicted Venus would be found to have orbital anomalies in relation to the other planets; Venus has since been found to rotate on its axis in reverse direction to the other planets, and its day is longer than its year. We now know that parts of the atmosphere of Venus rotate in 4 days (with winds of up to 400 km/h) while the planet itself rotates in 243 days. Both these rotations are retrograde.
One of Velikovsky's hypotheses for the slowing of the Earth's rotation which made the Sun appear to stand still was that the planet was engulfed in the extended atmosphere of the comet Venus. Some of the diurnal rotation of the Earth was imparted to this dust-cloud according to Velikovsky, which fits the eccentric characteristics of the Venusian atmosphere.

The comet spiraled past the Earth in an ever-decreasing path around the Sun before taking up its present orbit as the planet Venus. He further cites evidence to show that the Earth interacted with Mars on a number of occasions when writing was better developed than during the Venusian encounters, after Venus flipped Mars out of its orbit.