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"Myth is veiled history". - Euhemerus

The Saturn Theory Overview
By David Talbott

The following is excerpted from a summary on a private email group:

The origins of ancient mythology; the birth of the first civilizations; a violent history of the solar system: these are the primary themes of what has been called the "Saturn Theory."

In the broadest sense, what I have proposed is an explanation of the myth-making epoch as a whole. Astronomers and astrophysicists, historians, anthropologists, archaeologists and students of ancient myth and religion are asked to reconsider the most common assumptions about ancient history, including many that have rarely if ever been doubted.

The underlying principles of the theory are these:

1. Major changes in the planetary order, some involving Earth-threatening catastrophes, have occurred within human memory.

2. Through myth, ritual and symbol around the world, our ancestors preserved a global record of these tumultuous events.

3. The first civilizations arose from ritual practices honoring, imitating and memorializing these events and the planetary powers involved.

It should go without saying that if these principles are correct, there is an extraordinary evidential value to the mythical-cosmological underpinnings of the first civilizations. Hence, the communications challenge: this evidential value is virtually never acknowledged by
conventional schools.

Nevertheless, the model I have offered holds one advantage that prior catastrophist notions based on ancient testimony have lacked. It is specific enough to be easily disproved on its own ground if wrong. Whatever else one may think of the thesis, it meets this test of a good theory.


The theory holds that a unique congregation of planets preceded the planetary system familiar to us today. For earthbound witnesses, the result was a spectacular, at times highly unified apparition in the heavens, the obsessive focus of human attention around the world.

For more than 20 years, I have claimed that this fear-inspiring image once stretched across the northern sky, towering over ancient starworshippers. I termed this planetary arrangement the polar configuration because it was centered on the north celestial Pole. And I have proposed that the history of this configuration is the history of the ancient gods, recorded in the fantastic stories, pictographs and ritual reenactments of the first star worshippers.

A vast field of data is therefore available to the investigator. Remarkably similar pictures of a "sun" in the sky, revealing no similarity to our sun today. A pictographic crescent placed on the orb of the "sun" and a radiant "star" placed squarely in its center. The universal chronicles of a cosmic mountain, a pillar of fire and light rising along the world axis. The myth of a central sun or motionless sun at the celestial pole. Identification of this ancient "sun" with the planet Saturn in early astronomies. A radiant city or temple of heaven, providing the prototype for the sacred habitation on earth. Global memories of a star-goddess with long-flowing hair. An angry goddess raging across the sky with wildly disheveled hair, threatening to destroy the world. A flaming serpent or dragon disturbing the celestial motions or attacking the land. An ancestral warrior or hero, born from the womb of the star-goddess to vanquish the chaos-serpent or dragon.

Is it even possible that such diverse motifs could have a unified explanation? Well, one fact remains uncontested after many years of publishing on this subject. The hypothesized planetary configuration does predict or account for hundreds of ancient themes never before explained預nd at a level of detail or specificity that could not be denied. Indeed, I have gone so far as to brashly claim that not a single general motif of ancient myth, ritual or symbolism is left unexplained in the most straightforward way by the model. And that's what I mean when I say the model supports a general theory of ancient symbolism as a whole.

It needs to be emphasized, therefore, that the historical argument for the polar configuration is fully testable against a massive historical record. And I would hope that this will provide some assurance to those unnerved by the source material (ancient  testimony): if the model is fundamentally incorrect, the experts on ancient myth and
symbolism will have no trouble whatsoever refuting it.


Vine Deloria, author of the recently-published book, *Red Earth, White Lies*, has asked a couple of questions which I would like to address. But not in one shot, because the questions are too fundamental for that. I'd like to see if I can divide the issues into segments that could make for useful discussion.

The Saturn theory arose from a "historical argument," in the sense that the argument relates to the human past, as implied by the details of human memory in ancient times and by human artifacts. I shall offer this series of summaries as an exercise in clarifying the historical argument, without the aid of visual presentation.

One obvious and immediate question is whether something as ambiguous as myth could actually qualify as "evidence"? The historical argument focuses on *points of agreement* in the memories of widespread races, suggesting levels of coherence often missed by historians and anthropologists, and raising the possibility that this coherence arises from a core of human experience that has been missed as well.

There is an overarching idea in this argument. We've not only misunderstood the past, we've failed to recognize the consistency of ancient memory in pointing to extraordinary events never considered by modern science. Remarkably, every motive of our early ancestors directs our attention to experiences impossible to comprehend in terms of any natural phenomena occurring today. This consistency will be seen even at the most fundamental levels of human memory, in the most deeply-rooted themes of the first civilizations.

The universal memory of a former age of the gods. The universal memory of an ancestral Golden Age, inaugurating the age of the gods. The universal memory of a celestial "king of the world" whose life inspired the ancestral leap into civilization. Descriptions of the gods as luminaries of immense size and power, wielding weapons of thunder and stone. The universal claim that the ancient world evolved by critical phases or cycles, punctuated by sweeping catastrophe. Global traditions of gods and heroes ruling for a time, then departing amid terrifying spectacles and upheavals. The frequently-stated transfiguration of the departed gods into distant "stars". The identification of these ruling gods with planets in the first astronomies. The relentless urge of star worshippers to draw pictures of celestial forms never seen in our sky. Their desperate yearning to recover the semblance of a lost cosmic order. Their collective efforts to replicate, in architecture, the towering forms claimed to have existed in primeval times. Their festive recreations, through mystery plays and symbolic rites, of cosmic violence and disorder. Their repetition, through ritual sacrifice, of the deaths or ordeals of the gods. Their brutal and ritualistic wars of expansion, celebrated as a repetition of the cosmic devastation wrought in the wars of the gods.

Such motives as these constitute, in fact, the most readily verifiable underpinnings of ancient ritual, myth and symbol. How strange that in their incessant glance backwards, the builders of the first civilizations never remembered anything resembling the natural world in which we live!

What is needed in the face of unusual but widely repeated memories is brutal intellectual honesty. How did human consciousness, emerging from the womb of nature, converge on the same improbable ideas *contradicting* nature? For centuries we've lived under the illusion that our ancestors simply made up explanations of natural phenomena they didn't understand. But that's not the problem. What the myth-makers interpreted or explained through stories and symbols and ritual re-enactments is an unrecognizable world, a world of alien sights and sounds, of celestial forms, of cosmic spectacles and earth-shaking events that do not occur in our world. *That* is the problem.

From an evaluation of the global themes of ancient cultures, we have hypothesized a world order never imagined by mainstream theory預 world in which *planets* moved on different courses, appearing huge in the sky. Heaven-spanning celestial forms dominated human imagination to the point of obsession at the time of civilization's birth.

Our contention will be that hundreds of ancient themes speak for a unified experience, an experience more specific in context and detail than any of us had ever imagined when we started our research. No universal theme stands alone or in isolation from any of the others. All are connected. All speak for the presence of a coherent memory beneath the surface of seemingly random detail.

In offering these summaries, I am not asking or expecting anyone to embrace the extraordinary theory of planetary history involved, only to consider highly interesting evidence. One of the values of this re-interpretation of evidence is that the model *works*. It explains the subject matter. Even if you do not for an instant believe that the suggested events occurred, merely discovering the active memory will throw remarkable new light on the ancient structures of human consciousness.

In the course of these summaries, questions and challenges will be welcome, and wherever possible I will try to incorporate these into the narrative as we go along.

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