Magicians of the Gods: The Forgotten Wisdom of Earth's Lost Civilization
Graham Hancock’s new book Magicians of the Gods is a runaway success already in the UK, reaching No. 3 in the Sunday Times non-fiction bestseller list after just two days of sales. It is likely to repeat this success in other territories, making it an outright bestseller worldwide. Yet what exactly is it about and, more importantly, is it any good?
In essence, what Magicians of the Gods does very effectively is relay a somewhat chilling message, this being that there is now undisputable scientific evidence for a terrible catastrophe that befell humanity around 12,800 years ago. It was most likely caused when large fragments of a comet impacted with the earth and obliterated an existing global civilization. As a consequence of this cataclysm the northern hemisphere was plunged into a mini ice age known as the Younger Dryas event, which lasted 1,200 years. At its culmination, around 9600 BC, the remaining members of the human race were left like children with amnesia, having to start all over again without any meaningful knowledge of their past.
Although many of these ideas are not new, the manner in which they are brought together in the book is crucial in order to present them to a much wider audience. Making the book’s often weighty content easier to digest is the masterful way in which it is delivered. It is like a carefully crafted blockbuster conveying its single message from the opening pages right through to its climax, while at the same time tackling a whole series of worldwide mysteries along the way.
They include the discovery of Göbekli Tepe in southeast Turkey, the re-dating of Gunung Padang, Indonesia’s greatest and oldest megalithic complex in West Java, the enigma of the Great Sphinx, the real age of the Giza monuments, the underground cities of Turkey, and the greater antiquity of pre-Incan remains in Peru and Bolivia.
Graham Hancock at Göbekli Tepe
The Great Catastrophe
There are several chapters specifically on the comet impact event, embracing everything from nanodiamonds found in the blackened layer left behind by the wildfires it caused some 12,800 years ago, to its terrifying destruction of the North American landscape. Some time is spent on the creation of the Channeled Scablands of Washington State, which Graham and his wife Santha inspected first hand in the company of geological expert and catastrophist Randall Carson in 2014. These, Graham concludes, were created when millions of gallons of ice melt water, broken glaciers, rivers of mud and ice-rafted erratics burst through the valleys of Washington State after a large fragment of the Younger Dryas comet impacted with the Cordilleran ice sheet to the north of the Scablands.
Despite the incredible wealth of evidence for the so-called Younger Dryas impact event, as it is now known, its existence is still disputed by a prolific and highly influential group of mainstream academics, who try and bury any new evidence presented to the public on this important matter. This is concerning as we need to know more about the mechanisms behind this catastrophic event in human history, as there is disturbing evidence that some of the larger fragments of the comet responsible for the impact remain in orbit around the sun and can cross the earth’s own orbit at any time. It is this message that, Graham writes, is somehow being conveyed across time to us by survivors of the original cataclysm by its use of a canon of sacred numbers relating to precession (72, 108, 432, 2160, 12,950, etc), through mirroring the stars of this distant epoch on the ground, and handing down key knowledge through catastrophe legends and creation myths.
The Real Magicians
These survivors of the cataclysm, named by Graham as ancient “sages,” or “magicians of the gods,” are the wisdom bringers and culture heroes from mythologies around the world. They are the fish-tailed Apkallu of Babylonian tradition, the fallen Watchers of Hebrew myth and legend, the bearded Viracocha of South America, the Sabians of ancient Harran, and the mysterious Primeval Ones of ancient Egypt.
Although the original sacred island of the Primeval Ones is named in ancient texts as the Island of the Egg, Graham identifies it with another island called the Isle of Fire, located somewhere in the East. It is from here that the mythical phoenix returns to Egypt at the end of a world age. The bird’s symbolism is explained as the returning comet, while the Isle of Fire is identified as Sundaland, the former great landmass of southeast Asia that was submerged following the Younger Dryas event, leaving behind what is today the islands of Indonesia and the rest of the Malay archipelago.
Graham writes that the antediluvian sages came from Sundaland in the wake of the cataclysm, establishing themselves at new locations in the ancient world. One destination was Giza in Egypt, where they inspired the construction of the Great Sphinx and other pre-dynastic structures prior to the age of the Pyramids. They might also have been at Baalbek in the Lebanon, where a massive U-shaped wall that included three 800-tonne stone blocks was built during some distant epoch. It is a matter explored in detail by Graham in the book.
Graham doesn’t actually say Göbekli Tepe was built by incoming peoples from Sundaland, but he implies it. For instance, he compares carved art seen there with that found in distant places such as Easter Island, Peru, Bolivia, and Sulawesi in Indonesia. He proposes a common origin for all this ancient art in pre-cataclysmic Sundaland, revealed, finally, as the true location of Plato’s Atlantis. It is a new and very bold theory, although one that does contradict what the Greek philosopher says about the geographical location of his Atlantic Island.
Having tentatively identified Sundaland as Atlantis, and also with the mythical Isle of Fire, Graham goes on to propose that underground chambers detected by deep soundings and other geophysical surveys at Gunung Padang by a geological team led by Danny Hilman Natawijaja are the location of a lost “Hall of Records,” containing the wisdom of a pre-catastrophe race. As compelling an idea as this surely is, the main hollow cavity detected within the hill at Gunung Padang is quite possibly a volcanic lava tube. Whether or not this was attached to an artificial structure of extreme antiquity, or contains a repository of lost knowledge, remains to be seen. We wish Danny Hilman the very best for his future explorations at the site.
Magicians of the Gods is an extraordinary work of genius, delivering its poignant message well. Having said this, I would challenge Graham’s vision of Göbekli Tepe. This includes his opinions on the site’s proposed astronomical alignments, along with his interpretation of the carved imagery on the so-called Vulture Stone (Pillar 43) in its Enclosure D, both factors crucial in understanding the true function of the site (see “ Graham Hancock’s Magicians of the Gods: Its Proposed Astronomical Considerations at Göbekli Tepe – A Critique ”).
Despite such minor quibbles, what Graham Hancock has created is an essential tome that is a must have for every ancient mysteries aficionado. Yet of equal importance will be the book’s impact on the greater world, generated not just through its readership, but also within TV debates, radio interviews, mainstream newspaper features and serialisations. Graham must be congratulated for presenting the most dramatic, and most pressing, discoveries of the ancient mysteries community to a much wider audience. Let’s hope that one day everyone will come to understand the book’s truly chilling message to humankind.
Graham Hancock’s book Magicians of the Gods, published by Coronet, London, is available now from Amazon and other online bookstores.
Author of Göbekli Tepe: Genesis of the Gods