Sunday, March 29, 2015

Chariots of the Gods

The 1968 book Chariots of the Gods sparked the equally popular documentary "Chariots of the Gods" in 1970. The impetus for this is a man named Erich Von Daniken.

Erich Von Daniken, who was a in the hotel industry and had a past marked with *run-ins with the law and incarceration, came up with an interesting and unique concept that caught fire and became the hottest new para-concept; that ancient technology and ancient art showed evidence of visitation by aliens from other planets.

His book was a huge seller and the documentary soon followed with equal fervor. In a world that had become jaded about religious texts and the rigid guidelines of the Bible, a young culture was ready to jump on this concept and help further it along, encouraging Von Daniken to come up with more and more and even more examples as he worked his way into the field of archaeology to expand on the hypothesis and create an almost cult-like excitement.

There are many who have made careers based on this alien visitation evidence (ancient alien theorists) and cite Von Daniken often. Ultimately, we can look at any ancient constructions and see what we wish to see. If we wish to see aliens, we will see aliens. If we wish to see Atlanteans, we will see Atlanteans. 

I, myself, tend to lean towards the terrestrial explanation of an earlier branch of man that had more time to cultivate his culture around the earth before Homo sapiens wandered the globe after exiting Africa. 

I believe, like any other speculation, it is an intriguing game of the mind, but no matter what we dig up or find, even our trained archaeologists cannot prove that conclusions are accurate. Things we thought we knew, shift and change as we get more information; such as Neanderthal was not stupid and primitive, but in fact had tools and knowledge, spirituality, advanced capabilities, and even bred with Homo sapiens. 

Chariots of the Gods was a breakthrough in a lot of ways for the culture of the 1970s. It made us question angelic visitations, potential ancient technology, and wonder about our origins with more open minds. For that reason, it has stood the test of time for being a trailblazer. 

Background -
*At the age of 19, Däniken was given a four-month suspended sentence for theft. He left the school and became apprenticed to a Swiss hotelier for a time,before moving to Egypt. While in Egypt, he was involved in a jewelry deal which resulted in a nine-month conviction for fraud and embezzlement upon his return to Switzerland.In November 1968 Däniken was arrested for fraud, after falsifying hotel records and credit references in order to take out loans[7] for $130,000 over a period of twelve years. He used the money for foreign travel to research his book.[5] Two years later, Däniken was convicted for "repeated and sustained" embezzlement, fraud and forgery, with the court ruling that the writer had been living a "playboy" lifestyle. He unsuccessfully entered a plea of nullity, on the grounds that his intentions were not malicious and that the credit institutions were at fault for failing adequately to research his references, and on 13 February 1970 he was sentenced to three and a half years imprisonment and was also fined 3,000 francs. He served one year of this sentence before being released. 
His first book, Chariots of the Gods?, had been published by the time of his trial, and its sales allowed him to repay his debts and leave the hotel business. Däniken wrote his second book, Gods from Outer Space, while in prison.

Errors, omissions and plagarism - lots of different complaints about Von Daniken, enough to question his authority and insight on any matters in which he was not trained. Still, no matter the source of a new perspective, once we see something in a new light, it is hard to not see it. Von Daniken opened some doors to questioning science's take on artifacts and that is a good thing. He also made us have another look at Native Legends as reliable witness reports. For that, I am very glad Chariots of the Gods was written and accepted widely by the public.

The Book Chariots of the Gods
The Documentary "Chariots of the Gods"

1 comment:

  1. Read the book. Has some valid points but I don't accredit some of those pass events to an alien origin. I would favour more towards an forgotten advance society.