SIS WORKSHOP vols. 5 and 6 (7 issues, 1982-1986) ARTICLE ABSTRACTS/EXTRACTS

SIS WORKSHOP Vol. 5:1                                                               Click here for cost

Saturn's Flare-ups, by Dwardu Cardona

Hugh Eggleton badly misunderstood my work. Worse than that, he misrepresented my hypothesis. He is also guilty of other misconceptions. The present paper, in response to his [in SISW 4:3, pp. 15-17], is intended to clarify some points as well as to add, even if only in passing, some additional information concerning Saturn's early history. .......................... ................ I shall not take the points in the same order in which they appear in Eggleton's article - 'Did Saturn Explode Twice?' - I shall, instead, attempt a sequence in keeping with the chronology of the events discussed. I shall therefore start with matters of planetary identification ..................................
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Analogous Mountain Building, by D. A. Slade
 
The consideration of geology on a global scale has certain disadvantages mainly due to its enormity, thus making impractical laboratory experiments on the theories that have been evolved to explain the wealth of observed facts: in this age of electronics we hear a great deal about computer models - these are very helpful, but their usefulness must depend upon the information contained in the programme. There is so little known of sub-crustal structure and its behaviour that the computer model can only confirm or deny the validity of the speculation of the programmers; if it were otherwise, ................................
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Amenophis, Osarsiph and Arzu: More on the Third Intermediate Period of Egypt, by K. A. LeFlem (with comments by David Rohl)
 
Sethos and Sethosis - Manetho-Josephus confused the identities of Seti I (Sethos) and Seti II (Sethosis) by calling them both Aegyptus. It is clear, however, that this name originally refer[red] to Seti II. His brother Armais (Amenmesse) should not be confused with the Hermeus associated with Sethos, who corresponds to Horemheb, contemporary of Seti I. The origin of the name Danaus .........................
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Sethosis: the Seti II from the Kinglists?, by Peter van der Veen
 
In [SIS] Workshop 4:3, p. 2, Phillip Clapham identified Sethosis, Armais and the mysterious queen with Merenptah's successors: Amenmesse, Seti II and Tawosret. On p. 3 Clapham repeats the agument that Sethosis is Seti II. However, the evidence presented in favour of these identifications seems to be lacking. He probably felt tempted to identify these rulers, mentioned by Manetho, because of the similarity in names and the chronological order in which they appear. While Clapham is surely not the only one who has raised this suggestion, let us remember the words of Josephus: .............................................................
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SIS WORKSHOP Vol. 5:2                                                             Click here for cost 

Probable Visibilities of Venus at the Time of the Supposed Spin Rate Acceleration of the Earth, by Michael G. Reade
 
The Data  (1) The Venus table of the (Mayan) Dresden Codex indicates a 584-day synodic cycle for Venus, broken down into 8 days invisibility at inferior conjunction, 236 days visibility as Morning Star, 90 days invisibility at superior conjunction and 250 days visibility as Evening Star. (2) A. F. Aveni, in his Skywatchers of Ancient Mexico (University of Texas Press, 1980) has the following footnote ......................... (3) A portion of the Babylonian 'Ninsianna' (or 'Ammisaduga') tablets, frequently referred to as 'the artificial insertion', contains a number of reports on Venus, all which claim a 90-day disappearance at superior conjunction ............... (4) Modern Venus ..................................... (5) Vahara Mihira ................(6) The Babylonian 'Ninsianna' observations ............... (7) The article 'Ninsianna & Ramesside Star Tables' .............................  
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Mercury and the Tower of Babel, by Hugh Eggleton
 
In a different work I intend to bring out that what is known as the catastrophe of the Tower of Babel (Babylon) was caused by a close passage of Mercury, Nebo of the Babylonians (heard in the names of Nabopolassar and Nebuchadnezzar), or Thoth of the Egyptians (heard in the name Thutmose).
                                                                                                ( I. Velikovsky, Ramses II and His Time, p. 102)
 
In Genesis, chapter 11, we read how God destroyed the Tower of Babel, associated with the city of Babylon as its name indicates. Velikovsky believed that Mercury caused this disaster so I have attempted to reconstruct this event although the difficulty in mustering compelling evidence has resulted in a somewhat speculative effort. Mercury is a small planet viewed from the Earth; ..........................
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An Alternative to the Velikovskian Chronology of Ancient Egypt: A Preview of Some Recent Work in the Field of Ancient History, by David Rohl & Peter James
 
For some years now a number of the Society's historians have been endeavouring to provide a new model for ancient Near Eastern chronology in an attempt to answer the criticisms levelled at Velikovsky's work in Ages in Chaos, Ramses II and His Time and Peoples of the Sea. The original imaginative concept of Velikovsky's reconstruction has run into serious problems with regard to the method by which the so-called 'phantom years' are eliminated from the conventional (and apparently extended) history of the region. Very few of the Society's members would now be prepared to stand by the revision put forward in Ramses II and His Time and Peoples of the Sea although there is still a strong feeling that Ages in Chaos remains a true picture for the period of Egyptian history prior to the end of the XVIIIth Dynasty.  As a result of this disquiet over Velikovsky's later revision there grew a body of scholars whose objective was to provide an alternative method of reducing the history of Egypt by some 500 years as demanded by .....................................         There was a growing feeling that such a revision, while it provided some promising synchronisms, could not be realistically achieved within the limited time-span dictated by Velikovsky's date of c. 820 BC for the end of the XVIIIth Dynasty. .......Thus we arrive at the purpose of this communication to the membership of the SIS. For the last two years ................................
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SIS WORKSHOP Vol. 5:3                                                                                                                                      Click here for cost 
(this issue also contains a 'Forum' piece concerning the Rohl-James Chronology outlined in Workshop 5:2)
 
Josephus and Velikovsky, by George G. Harvey
 
That portion of the works of Josephus which runs parallel to the Old Testament shows imperfect agreement between the two in some details. Josephus must have had access to historical documents not preserved in the Scriptures. Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky used some of Josephus' writings as evidence to support his contention that the Old Testament describes a time when the solar system was periodically disrupted, causing havoc on Earth. However, Velikovsky did not choose to use all potential references in Josephus. I wish to point out some not used. ...........................
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The Pleides in Aboriginal Mythology  , by J. E. Aitchison
 
Recently I began some investigations into the possibility that Aboriginal myths might have some synonymity with the myths of other cultures. My intial intent was to draw on Aboriginal myths related to the planets and major constellations and try to find parallels. ......................................................
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A Few Comments Upon Reading Worlds in Collision, by Paul W. Standring
 
 'I even seem to find some cases where Velikovsky has not read Velikovsky carefully'. ([Carl] Sagan)
 
In a work of such scope and immensity there are bound to be minor errors or inconsistencies, some of which I list below. These, however, unless fundamental to the central thesis, should not be allowed to draw our attention away from consideration of the work as a whole. Yet at some stage they must be faced, if only because these are the weak links which hostile critics will be tempted to seize [on] when the re-discovery of Velikovsky gets under way. ..........................................................
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SIS WORKSHOP Vol. 5:4                                                              Click here for cost 
(this issue contains a 'Forum' section with questions and answers on the
 chronology of Rohl and James)
 
The New Orthodoxy's Respect for Fact, by Jim F. Clarke
 
Many readers may be disturbed by my argument for the primacy of theory. Does it not lead to dogmatism and disrespect for fact? It can, of course, but it need not. (Stephen Jay Gould, Ever Since Darwin, Essay 20)
 
Velikovsky's unorthodox method is to begin with a working hypothesis and then attempt to find some physical explanation. (S. J. Gould, paraphrased from Ever Since Darwin, Essay 19) 
 
In his New Scientist article on the recent American 'monkey trial' [1], Michael Ruse criticises 'creation science' and the 'sleazy' tactics used by its supporters to denigrate evolutionists and promote their own cause, such as 'quoting out of context' and 'fabricating facts'. Along the way he delivers a delirium of praise for expert witness S. J. Gould, implying that he is a fine example of the paragons plying the uniformitarian side of the street. This sent me scurrying to my bookshelf for that masterpiece of wit, coherence and forcefulness (according to the cover blurb) by the same S. J. Gould: Ever Since Darwin [2].
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'It Ain't Necessarily So', by John J. Bimson
 
In Workshop 5:2, p. 17, David Rohl and Peter James propose a reconstruction of Egypt's Third Intermediate Period in which Shoshenk I (Hedjkheperre) reigned in the late 8th century BC. They comment: 'Thus we have not excluded Velikovsky's suggestion that Hedjkheperre Shoshenk was the Pharaoh 'So' who took tribute from Hoshea of Israel in 725 BC ...' This comment follows Velikovsky's example in going beyond the information supplied by the Old  Testament.  Velikovsky  refers  to  this  Shoshenk  as  the  pharaoh  'to  whom  Hoshea ......... sent  tribute',  [1] but II Kings says that Hoshea sent messengers to So. .......................... 
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Corneile à l'Orange and Other Canards, by C, Leroy Ellenberger
 
Time and circumstances have conspired such that several topics in Velikovskian discussions require a clarification and/or correction. I trust the editor will find them important enough to indulge my concerns. First, to correct a minor error in a recent Workshop. There may very well be problems with radiometric dating applied to cosmic catastrophes, such as the constancy of the decay rate, but in Workshop 5:1, p. 28, this criticism was mistakenly applied to the caesium clock. This was a mistake .................................. I would also like to take this opportunity to retract an argument of mine which appeared in SISR III:4, p. 85, and SISR IV:4, p. 84. Despite the several errors that Keister and Hamilton made in their paper [1] and defence [2], they were correct that a Lyttleton-type fissioning is irrelevant to the purported origin of Venus from Jupiter. .................. .
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SIS WORKSHOP Vol. 6:1 (includes 'Forum' with questions and                                   Click here for cost 
 answers on the chronology  of Rohl & James)
 
The Search for Sethos, by John J. Bimson 
 
In SISR V:1 (1980/1), p. 25, I promised to discuss in a subsequent paper the identity of the Egyptian king whom Herodotus calls Sethos. The projected paper was referred to there (in n. 132) as 'Sennacherib, Sethos and the Year 701', my intention being to discuss in a single paper the date of the campaign against Jerusalem in which the army of Sennacherib was dramatically destroyed (II Kings 19:35-36), and the identity of Sethos, ................................................ Since then, two events have occurred which have led me to adapt my original intention. The first of these was the publication in Workshop 5:1, pp. 19-21, of the paper by Peter van der Veen, 'Sethosis: the Seti II from the Kinglists?'  .................
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Velikovsky's Mythology: Accepting the Premise, by Chris Boyles
 
'Accepting the premise that the major gods have an astronomical origin ...' [1] seems to be the assumption underlying many recent articles in Workshop [2]. Yet it is a premise which, unlike many of Velikovsky's well-considered and logically formulated ideas, was rather 'pulled out of a hat'.  In Worlds in Collision, Velikovsky simply expressed the opinion, backed up by those of one or two others, that catastrophic events are more likely to instigate a myth-making process than everyday events [3].  ............................
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Ice Cores and Catastrophism, by Bernard Newgrosh
 
Leroy Ellenberger is surely right: we must not sweep unpalatable evidence under the carpet and hope it will go away. In his paper [1] he drew our attention to the new and refined data from the Greenland ice cores which he says 'look good enough to preclude the occurrence of cosmic catastrophes at the times and of the intensity that Velikovsky's scenario requires'.  This is a formidable challenge to Velikovskian catastrophism and we should take it up. I hope these comments of mine will start the ball rolling for a fruitful discussion. At the start, I should like to point out that the evidence from the Greenland ice cores, as interpreted by the scientists themselves, also appears to provide good evidence against revised chronologies. ..................................
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SIS WORKSHOP Vol. 6:2 (containing a 'Forum' section with questions                 Click here for cost 
and answers on the chronology of Rohl & James)
 
Volcanism and Catastrophic Mythology, by Jill Abery
 
Do the origins of catastrophic mythology lie in a core of local catastrophe[s] embroidered and perpetuated over lengthy time periods? The universal myth of a world-wide flood is often considered in terms of occasional overflow of river systems or even the annual inundation of the Nile. Similarly the activities of the god of fire, the Greek Hephaistos or the Roman Vulcan, are associated with active volcanoes, the very word being derived from the Roman Vulcan. In his role as blacksmith to the gods the 'smoking' volcano has been viewed as chimney to the forge. I aim here to investigate the effects of volcanic activity and to show that, however, severe, local events were unlikely to have been catastrophic enough to engender the eruptive elements of ancient world-wide mythologies. .........................
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Penteost, by James E. Strickling
 
Like the universe of which he is a part, man is an electrical creature. The natural currents within our bodies are small, but their role is extremely significant; they govern our very lives. These minute currents can be disrupted, or overridden. In particular ' ... extremely low frequency (ELF) fields have the capacity to penetrate buildings and living tissue and hence are potential biological stimuli' [1] And when this happens, our perceptions can falter and our reactions and responses might be beyond our control. Such stimuli might have many unpredictable effects upon man,  ............................................
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Cosmic Catastrophe in Paradise Lost, by A. W.
 
I must at the outset make it clear that I have no qualifications to discuss the theories propounded by Dr. I. Velikovsky, but I have read several of his books and H. S. Bellamy's Moons, Myths and Man which reminded me of another work which centred round the dramatic fall from grace of Lucifer, the brightest object in the sky. It occurred to me that Milton might have something of interest to say about cosmology and when I opened Paradise Lost - for the first time in 30 years or more - I was surprised to find that it did indeed contain material of considerable interest. ............................   Several long passages in this poem either are, or could be interpreted as, accounts of a planetary Armageddon  .......................
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SIS WORKSHOP Vol. 6:3 (including a 'Forum' section with questions                  Click here for cost 
and answers on the chronology of Rohl & James)
 
Megaliths, Moon Cycles and Movements of the Earth, by Jill Abery
 
Many authors have written in support of the idea that ancient man was deeply concerned with the movements of the Moon. Alexander Marshack has suggested that the engravings on 'batons' (objects of unexplained function) from the Upper Palaeolithic of western, central and eastern Europe were recordings of the lunar cycle. [1].  Alexander Thom is well-known for his work on British megalithic sites and the subsequent arguments about the validity of his conclusions. There is doubt concerning the accuracy of observation possible at many of the sites; nevertheless, there seems to be a good case for considering that many of them were built with lunar alignments in mind [2]. Outside Britain, Professor Maxia, working on the nuraghi of Sardinia, has shown that the associated 'well-temples' are astronomically significant and based on the Moon [3]. If it is accepted that these observations are correct, what could be the motivation behind this obsession? .............................. 
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Some Notes on Catastrophism in the Classics, by Hugh Crosthwaite
 
A fertile field awaits the classical scholar who is interested in the early Greek pre-Socratic philosophers and the tragic poets. Here are a few stray thoughts to arouse interest (I hope).
The article in Kronos VI:4 mentioning the river Jordan's reversal brings to mind lines from a chorus in the Medea of Euripides, lines 410-413.
 
'The waters of sacred rivers flow uphill, and justice and all things are reversed. Man's counsels are deceitful, and belief in the gods is no longer firm.'
 
Heraclitus give us:
 
'It is the thunderbolt that steers the universe.'
 
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Shiloh, by Terry Lawrence
 
Although not a Levite city, it was at Shiloh that the tent of meeting was set up in the days of the Conquest (Joshua 18:1) and it was the principal sanctuary of the Israelites during the time of the Judges (Judges 18:31). ......................The current conventional chronology identifies it as Seilun, 14 kilometresnorth of Beiten  ......................No sign was found of an Israelite temple of the Judges period. .......... According to Judges 21:19, Shiloh is situated north of Bethel on the east of the highway that goes up to Shechem and south of Lebonah. ...................An interesting alternative is the suggestion of Richardson in the 1926 Palestine Exploration Fund journal. ..................
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Planetary Worship, by Dwardu Cardona
 
That ancient man worshipped the planets as gods is not a new revelation. The study of classical texts, of cuneiform tablets, even the pages of our own Bible, have long illuminated this oft-ignored aspect of ancient religions.  It is therefore incredible  that, from time to time, people like Chris Boyles find it necessary to question this verity. What is even more surprising is that Boyles can bring himself to state that the astronomical origin of the major gods of antiquity is a premise that has been 'pulled out of a hat' [1]. ..........................................
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In a work of such    
                    SUBSEQUENT ISSUES OF WORKSHOP ARE RENAMED CHRONOLOGY & CATASTROPHISM WORKSHOP 
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