This book is comprised of some quite different sections. The first part, ‘Origins of Life in the Cosmos’, by Wickramasinghe, is a renewed statement of the thesis that he put forwards many years ago along with the late Fred Hoyle, that life did not originate on earth, but somewhere in outer space, being perhaps brought here by comets crashing. He presents some subsequent discoveries that tend to support this hypothesis.
The first eighty pages of Part II, ‘Intelligent Speculation Based on Cutting Edge Science’, by Robert Bauval, consists of three general chapters on unsolved problems in science. The remaining eighty concern his favourite hobby horse, the pyramids of Giza.
“More rubbish has been written about the Great Pyramid than any other construction on this planet” – John Keel. “The Pyramid of Cheops, in particular, has inspired hundreds of crazy and untenable theories” – Erich von Däniken. It will be observed that neither of these two authors have ever been noted for their cautious scepticism.
In fact, though it is fairly obvious that the New Egyptologists were originally inspired by von Däniken, as indicated by some of their titles (Fingerprints of the Gods, etc.), they now find this an embarrassment. Hence Bauval writes: “…a “contact” might have taken place long ago when humans either did not detect it, or worse, they might have heard the “message” but misunderstood it as a divine revelation and turned it into religion. I know that this possibility will evoke the Erich von Däniken, ancient aliens, or paleo-SETI hypotheses that have vexed the scholarly and scientific communities. But this cannot be helped.”
As long ago as 1859, London mathematician John Taylor had observed that when he divided the circumference of the base of the Great Pyramid by twice the height he to the number 3.144, which is similar to Pi, 3.14159. He deemed this to be too close for coincidence. So he supposed that the builders had been trying to ‘square the circle’.
The summit of the Great Pyramid has been ascertained by modern technology to be at 29.9792 degrees north. “It has often been noted by pyramid researchers that if the decimal point of this value is moved forward by four digits it will give the number 299,792, which is, as weird as this may sound, precisely the speed of light in a vacuum measured in kilometres per second.” Bauval asks if this can really be a coincidence? Now, conceivably, extraterrestrial visitants could have informed the ancient Egyptians about the velocity of light, but not even advanced space aliens could have known what arbitrary measures of distance and time would be employed thousands of years in the future.
Bauval proudly observes that he originated the ‘Orion Correlation Theory’ (OCT), that the three main pyramids on the Giza Plateau matched the stars in the belt of Orion. As Magonia meeting regulars Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince pointed out, “the only time that all three pyramids line up perfectly with the stars is in graphics used in Hancock/Bauval television programmes.”
He has tacitly dropped some of the hypotheses of his previous books. One was that the southern shaft leading from the Queen’s Chamber of the Great Pyramid was designed to align with Sirius. Actually, this had been suggested by the Masonic writer Albert Churchward as long ago as 1898. Once again, Picknett and Prince pointed out that this could hardly be the case as the shafts have kinks in them, so they could not be “directed at a specific point in the sky.” But even if they were, no-one that I have read explains how they could have been aligned to any particular star. It might seem unnecessary to say so, but ‘fixed’ stars are not fixed, at least not relative to the earth’s surface, and even have different latitudes at different seasons. Only the Pole Star is roughly fixed.
Another idea from the Keeper of Genesis that is not now mentioned is that the Sphinx must have been built in the Age of Leo, that is, the age during which the Spring Equinox occurred when the Sun was in the sign of Leo, about 10,500 BC. Now, Leo and the other constellations of the Zodiac were originally named by the Sumerians. But these names were not imported to Egypt until about 500BC, ten thousand years after this hypothetical date of the Sphinx.
A forty-four page Appendix by Gary Osborn continues the arithmetic theme, asserting that “highly advanced mathematical data” is encoded in the Great Pyramid: not only pi, phi, and the logarithmic constant e, but the diameter of the earth, the distance of the earth to the moon, and so on. He considers that these are accurate to fourteen significant figures.
I am not sure what all of this is meant to prove. – Gareth J. Medway