The Origin of Australian Aborigines: A Speculation

Aborigines have been in Australia for at least 40,000 to 60,000 years. The later time is still the main one given, but there is enough evidence to push that back to the earlier date, perhaps even to 70,000 years. What is intriguing is not where they came from, which is from Asia, but how they got to Australia.

The people in Asia that they most resemble are the original people of India. Although this is not universally accepted, I think they are the most likely ancestors. The peoples who now live in Southeast Asia between India and Australia were later arrivals, supplanting the original inhabitants. The most common assumption is that the Aborigines arrived via a land bridge, like the aboriginal Americans arrived from Siberia. Unfortunately, there was never a land bridge between Asia and Australia anywhere near a time when the Aborigines needed to have crossed (or since). Even at the most optimum, there were 150 miles of ocean that had to be navigated, and this was at a time long before early man took to the sea, before boats, before canoes, before rafts, before anything made to float on. At 150 miles, no land on the other side or loom of land is visible.

It is possible that by accident, a person clinging to a log could drift across to Australia, but even at the shortest distance of 150 miles, it would take many days, assuming a steady progress. One person is not enough; two are needed for procreation. But even that is a stretch. A scientist, whose work I read while still in Australia, writing on this problem, said that it would take a group of at least 27 or 28, for survival to be viable. That figure is the bare minimum. Is it possible that such a large group could have drifted across?

Actually, and here comes the speculation, it is possible, more than 28, possibly hundreds, but they were not drifting. They were washed over. This speculative scenario occurred to me while I was rereading Velikovsky’s Earth in Upheaval.

Velikovsky wrote Earth in Upheaval to counteract criticism that there was no hard evidence for major catastrophes in the past, as he postulated in Worlds in Collision, which was based on ancient records and mythologized remembrances of ancient peoples. The evidence he gathered for Earth in Upheaval does show massive catastrophes that not only suddenly wiped out large numbers of ancient animals, like mammoths, hippopotami, various predators, and so forth, all mixed up and smashed into crevices and caves, so suddenly that the food was undigested and grass being eaten was still between the teeth. Mixed in amongst them were also human remains. Errant boulders were pushed long distances, even uphill, and much, much more.

The part that I focused on was the evidence of vast tidal waves that swept over large areas of the world. There are no precise times for these, but the range of animals involved roughly match our years of interest.  (Later in the book, he focuses on the last millennium BCE.) The cause for the tidal waves may have been some kind of cosmological ping-pong in our solar system, but the cause is not really relevant here. Such a huge tsunami could have swept enough survivors onto the Australian continent. In their new country, these new Aborigines would have found plenty of large game (assuming it survived), and a new environment to adapt to and gradually to make their own.

One final speculation can be made, assuming cosmological origins of the catastrophe. In Worlds in Collision, Velikovsky links the concept of dragons and the like to apparitions seen in the sky during planetary close encounters. For the aborigines, the Rainbow Serpent is the most important concept in their mythology. Is there a corresponding origin here with that of the dragons?

(To give a perspective on the time span involved, I should add that Aborigines were in Australia well before humans got to Europe.)

The Chronology of the Ancient World

Last week, archaeologists reported the unearthing of a couple from the ancient city of Troy. They believed the two had died around 1200 BCE about the time when the best-known Troy was thought to have fallen. The date given for Homer’s Troy is usually in the late Bronze Age in the 13th century BCE. Radiocarbon testing may well confirm the year of their death, but this is not the time of Homer’s Troy. Homer’s Troy belongs in the 8th century BCE.

Ancient history of the Mediterranean basin is based on two chronologies. On the one side, there is the Egyptian one, which includes the Mycenaean and Minoan cultures; on the other is everyone else’s. Homer’s Troy has been placed with the Mycenaean. The trouble is that the chronologies are about 500 years out of sync. So we end up with situations such as the Mycenaean civilization flourishing in isolation from the rest of Greece, and then suddenly dying out to be followed by five centuries of dark ages. Then, lo and behold, half a millennium later, the same civilization appears nearby on the Greek mainland! These kinds of anomalies appear everywhere, requiring ingenious solutions and other fictions.

As an example of fiction, one major problem was the identification of a hostile people—hostile to the Egyptians, that is. Who were these people of Hatti? No record could be found of them, except in Egyptian records. The problem was “solved” when an English missionary, just back from the field, suggested that they should be called the Hittites. Problem solved, yes, except for the lack of corroboration outside of Egypt. These “Hittites” had many similarities to the Chaldeans who were active around Babylon 500 years later. That there should be such similarities is no surprise, for when the chronologies are realigned, the “Hittites” turn out to be the Chaldeans, and Hatti is nothing more than the Egyptian word for the general area around Babylon.

Here is another, absurd example. A tomb was found in what is now Syria. The grave clearly belonged to the 7th century BCE in all respects. It contained a number of vessels, all but two of them belonging to the time of the tomb. The problem was that the two other vessels were Egyptian, and, because Egyptian chronology takes precedence over any other, the grave had to be dated some 500 to 600 years earlier! Now the mystery was how did those later vessels get into the tomb. Finally, an acceptable “solution” was devised: 500 years later, thieves entered the tomb, looking for jewelry, and they must have left those vessels there. Brilliant! It’s like thieves breaking into your house, looking for money, and leaving a couple plasma TV sets. I can just visualize those would-be thieves of the 7th century BCE, climbing over mounds, looking for ancient tombs, carrying vessels with them, so they can leave them in the tomb. The obvious answer, that the vessels were all contemporary, was never considered.

I also wonder how the Egyptian workmen of the 13th century BCE could chisel their records into rock surfaces, some of which were harder than granite, using Bronze Age tools and soft meteorite iron. Some centuries later, it would have been so much easier with the forging of iron and the ability to harden that iron into a kind of steel. Egyptians could not have been making steel hundreds of years before their neighbors; because the quality of their iron ore was so poor, they had to import from other countries, notably Greece.

The fault in all this lies with the Egyptian chronology, which in the last 200 years has been considered inviolate.  In itself, this chronology does account for all the required years. The problem is that some of the kings (pharaohs) about whom very little is known, around 500 years worth of these guys, are really duplicates of earlier pharaohs, but listed under their Greek names or one of their many other ones.

Would not radiocarbon dating show the errors in the dates? Very little carbon dating has been done. As one Egyptologist said, radiocarbon dating is unnecessary since we already know the date. Dating of wood gives the time when the wood was growing, not when it was cut down and used. One piece that was carbon dated, indicated that the wood was at least a hundred years later than the level it was found in. The explanation? Somehow that piece of wood got pushed down from a higher level.

Once the chronologies are realigned, everything falls into place. And there are other bonuses. The Queen of Sheba, who visited King Solomon in Jerusalem, is identified as Queen Hatshepsut of Egypt. The detailed record of her visit to Punt matches the record in the Bible. The pharaoh of the exodus of the Israelites is identified, and it is not Ramses II, but Thom. There is even a record of Thom’s death in the whirlpool, the closing of the Red Sea waters as recorded in the book Exodus.

All this is detailed by Immanuel Velikovsky in Ages in Chaos, Ramses II and His Time, The Peoples of the Sea, and in the outline drafts of two other books, The Dark Age of Greece and The Assyrian Conquest, which were unfinished at his death and may be found at While one may question his theories of major world catastrophes in our recent past, there is no doubt that he is correct on the chronologies of ancient history.

More than 50 years have passed since he first proposed bringing the chronologies into alignment, but it is going to be a long time before the error is fixed. The problem is not just human ego (i.e. a reluctance to admit one’s errors) that prevents acceptance of the new chronology; it’s the enormity of the problem.

(References to Velikovsky are appearing in my blogs around this time, since I have been rereading his works.)

Scientific Orthodoxy and Venus

Progress in science is achieved through open-minded investigation of phenomena, the acquisition of new knowledge, and the correction and integration of previous knowledge. The main obstacle to scientific progress is not general ignorance or the lack of application of the scientific method, but scientific orthodoxy. This phenomenon takes place when a certain theory, such as the current greenhouse/global warming theory, becomes so pervasive that it is unquestioningly adopted as established fact, and this “fact” is used to hinder or even stifle further progress, and prevent critical investigation of the theory or the examination of alternative theories.

History can provide many examples. I give just one. In 1912 Alfred Wegener first put forward the idea of continental drift and he later expanded it. He proposed that the continents were once joined together in a single landmass, and that they drifted apart to their present positions. This is all too familiar to us now, but Wegener met nothing but opposition, much of it extremely hostile. His proposal had come up against scientific orthodoxy. Wegener spent the rest of his life trying to find convincing proof of his theory and in the end died on one of his expeditions. Even the theory of plate junctions, proposed by Arthur Holmes in 1920, and his later suggestion that convection currents in the mantle could cause movement in the plates, did not bring about acceptance of continental drift. It was only in the late 1950s that Wegener’s theory became generally accepted. Now, of course, it has achieved the status of orthodoxy. Woe be to anyone who might come up with an alternate hypothesis!

We may have a similar situation with the planet Venus. Until the beginning of exploration in the 1960s, little was known about the planet. The common view was that it was a cold, cloudy and wet planet. C.S. Lewis’ 1943 novel Perelandia represents this understanding of the planet’s surface.

The first researcher to postulate that the surface of Venus was actually very hot was Immanuel Velikovsky in the 1940s. He was ridiculed for this, not just because it flew in the face of scientific orthodoxy, but because of his myth-based methodology, which was not acceptable to scientists. In addition, he proposed that Venus was ejected by Jupiter (which he said was also hot and a radio source). After causing some planetary havoc, Venus was finally captured in its present orbit by the sun. The suggestion of such a huge catastrophic occurrence ran in the face of Uniformitarianism, the prevailing scientific view of development and evolution. We know now that both Venus and Jupiter are very hot planets, and the Jupiter is a radio source. These facts, however, have not redeemed any of Velikovsky’s ideas.

Mariner 2 in a flyby in 1962 found that the surface was indeed extremely hot, and Venera 4, which landed on the planet in 1967, made the first accurate temperature measurement at almost 500 degrees C – a far cry from the supposed cold and wet planet. The planetary explorations of Venus have produced facts, but they have also produced theories that are not yet proven. Nevertheless, these theories are promulgated as though they are beyond all doubt. They turn up in school textbooks as facts. The planet is described as once being like the earth, but now it is covered with clouds of sulphuric acid, and its heat is the result of a runaway greenhouse effect. Almost in the same metaphoric breath, the text goes on to warn mankind that the same thing could happen here on earth if we don’t change our profligate habits.

Linking what is supposed to have happened on Venus with what might happen on Earth is a common feature in explanations of the atmosphere of Venus. It does not just happen in textbooks; it is part of the orthodoxy of Venus. This is no coincidence: the idea of a planetary greenhouse was first proposed for Venus in an attempt to explain its great heat. The term “runaway” conveniently captured the planet’s supposed descent into hellish conditions. Only later was the greenhouse idea applied to Earth.

There are some problems with the orthodox view of Venus. First of all, the impression is given, especially in the elementary school textbooks, that the atmosphere is mostly sulphuric acid, which it is not. It is actually somewhere in the order of 98 percent carbon dioxide; only the clouds are supposed to be sulphuric acid.

Questions can also be raised about the “runaway greenhouse effect”; these would probably be howled down by scientific orthodoxy. It is assumed that the planet was once like Earth. Due to factors such as its proximity to the sun and the absence of a moon, an Earth-like environment could not have happened in the first place. Venus was never like Earth. Another problem with the greenhouse idea is that Venus is entirely covered with an opaque layer of highly reflective clouds, the most reflective natural surface in the entire solar system. These clouds very efficiently turn back heat radiation, far more efficiently than clouds do on Earth. The extreme heat of Venus is actually internally generated.

Planetary exploration of Venus is of course incomplete. Missions to return to Venus are currently in the works, and future explorations will no doubt produce evidence that will challenge and correct the shortcomings in the current orthodox view.

Venus, therefore, is not a blueprint for what might happen on Earth. There are too many assumptions in the Venus scenario to be solid evidence. Orthodoxy aside, any global warming that is taking place here on Earth, is not and cannot be a copy of whatever happened or is happening now on Venus.

Also see “A Note on Global Warming” below.