The Shaver Mystery

Hell Really Exists

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The story of the subterranean passage at Blowing Cave is a story that originated in the pages of Shavertron magazine, published in an off-again/on-again manner by Richard Toronto. Shavertron bills itself as 'Your Only Source of Post-Deluge Shaverania,' and, I must say, it lives

Shaver Mystery Dero
20. A map of the Hollow Earth, with great detail, including the path of Admiral Byrd's flight to the inner world, a saucer on its way to Venus, and the caverns of the hideous Dero.

up to that name. Shavertron is devoted to the life, theories, and art of Richard Shaver, a not-so-well-known writer of pulp science fiction stories in the 1940s. He is much more than that, however. His stories were sold as true by Shaver and his Amazing Stories publisher Ray Palmer and proved to have a lasting impact on the world of esoterica. Indeed, the Shaver Mystery, as the events surrounding his stories came to be called, is credited by some as providing the impetus for the flying saucer craze of the late 1940s.

Shaver was introduced to readers of Amazing Stories in 1943 when he sent a letter to editor Ray Palmer claiming to have discovered an ancient alphabet that he called 'Mantong.' Palmer published the letter as well as Shaver's story 'I Remember Lemuria.' The Lemuria story was typical of the genre and was supposed to be an account of Shaver's past-life experience in the ancient land. As it turned out, Lemuria would come to provide a back-story for one of the weirdest and most bizarre tales of all time. Shaver himself described the origins of his subterranea: 'Once I was just a person, as you probably are. Then one hot night I had a dream that changed my entire life. Let me tell you the dream and what it did to me' (Swartz, 20). The dream was of a beautiful woman, named Nydia:

A woman's white face floated before me, the dark red lips hanging like moist fruit, her teeth gleaming. A husky whisper importuned, and I followed . . . Nydia . . .

Every past image of the desired bodies of women, all women I had ever known stretched out their hands to me, and writhed gleaming limbs in a slow dance of longing, holding their red tipped breasts tightly with their spread hands as though to keep the growing buds from blooming suddenly into some wild flower of culmination - and all their faces were . . . Nydia! . . .who was this Nydia I had met in my dreams? (21)

In what has to be one of the weirder passages in modern literature, Shaver describes awaking in the morning following this dream to find that he had overturned the urinal which he kept under his bed (a device that Shaver calls a 'thundermug'). The urine had spread across the brown linoleum on his floor and dried in the perfect likeness of the face of Nydia!

Following this dream, Shaver began to hear voices during his work as a welder on an assembly line. He used two different welding guns in turn, each for a different type of weld that he had to make. He would use one gun, push it out of the way, and then duck as the next one swung into position. One of the guns began to have a very bizarre effect on Shaver, allowing him to hear voices and to know what was in the minds of his co-workers:

I began to notice something very strange about one of the guns. Whenever I held it, I heard voices, far-off voices of endless complexity. When I changed to the other gun of the pair, I heard nothing. Then I grabbed the gun again as it came around, and right away I knew what was in Bill's lunch box; which girl Bumpy was going to take out that night; the gift Hank's mother was planning to give his wife. It was a dress, and quite a dress too. (22)

The strange effect of the welding gun would not remain so benign, however. Soon Shaver began hearing the far-off voices with added clarity. They were not always pleasant:

I would hear a mean kind of voice say something like 'Put her on the target.' Then I would hear a woman's screams, louder and louder and more and more agony in the screams - and at last a gurgle, a death rattle . . . I would hear a woman cursing and the lash of a whip - and felt a pleasure in the scream of the person getting the lash. (23)

Soon, Shaver began to suspect that he was being specifically targeted to experience the painful stimulations. He describes his experiences in 'prison,' probably the mental hospital where Shaver is known to have resided for a while:

I began to feel pains, and the thought in my head kept laughing at me. Like an imp would laugh.

The pains got worse. Finally I knew what it was, but I didn't believe it. It was people living in caves under and around the prison, and the people's kids liked to torment us prisoners! Not just pester, but real, genuine, torture, done with some kinds of X-rays. (23)

In time, thankfully, the painful stimulations subsided and were replaced by decidedly more pleasurable forces. Shaver assumed that some authority figure, perhaps a 'lawman,' had discovered the crime and put a stop to it. This was not the full story, however, as Shaver learned when the pleasurable stimulations took on a decidedly more erotic feel.

I learned that for every pain ray, those secret people had a dozen infinitely pleasant rays. They called it 'stim' and woke me every morning with floods of the most delicious sensations on earth. How can I best describe stim? Well, it's like a young girl's kiss augmented by a magic to a million powers. One of the young ray people was a girl who seemed to fall for me. She especially dished out this stim ray to me. There is no value on earth as great as stim love. Her name was Nydia, the same girl of my dream! (24)

On one occasion, Nydia used the stim ray to control Shaver's prison guard. Shaver used the opportunity to escape from the prison into a cavern in the nearby woods: 'The dim light inside the caves I found emanated from long tubes running alongside cavern walls. The cavern was an alien place. Vast sculptured rock-forms of non-human beings supported the high, carved arches of the roof that was a mountain overhead.' Inside the cavern Shaver met his beloved Nydia and was taken deep into the underground world where he quickly learned that true love-making amplified by the stim rays was the most incredible experience of his life. This love-making is described by Shaver in pornographic detail.

He learned from Nydia and her people that their civilization was descended from the ancient civilizations of Atlantis and Mu, who were themselves descended from Titans, travelers from space who had made the earth their home. All had gone well for the Titans on earth and they created a world of peace and technological wonder. All of this changed when the galaxy moved through a cosmic dust storm. This storm fueled the sun and caused reactions that made sunlight toxic to the Titans. Most of the Titans responded to the threat by abandoning the planet. Some of them sought safety under the protective mantle of the earth's crust, however.

Using already existing caverns, the Titans used mighty earthmoving machines to dig new caves and tunnels that crisscrossed the planet. With them they took their great machines and scientific knowledge in hopes of someday discovering a way to overcome the solar radiation, and once again live on the surface of their beloved planet. (22)

Unfortunately, the radiation continued to have a negative impact upon the Titans. Some groups managed to remain relatively normal.


These became known as Teros. Many of the Titans, however, began to suffer genetic mutations that destroyed both their intelligence and their morality:

Eventually, this once mighty race was reduced to mutated horrors, retarded in intelligence and social structure. Worse still, these monstrosities still had access to the self-repairing machines of their ancestors. But instead of using them for their intended purposes, the Abandondero used them to satisfy their sick, twisted desires. These are the demons of ancient myth and folklore. (22)

These Abandonderos, or Deros, were responsible for the painful experiences that Shaver had himself suffered, and indeed for many of the ills of present life that the human race suffers. Literally under our feet, a war is waging between the forces of good and the forces of evil - between Teros and Deros.

Later in his life Shaver added some important elements to his theories, including his discovery of 'Rock Books.' In his workshop in Summit, Arkansas, Shaver painstakingly examined rocks in the belief that they contained information from the ancient civilizations of the Titans. He observed: 'Stones are not just stones, they are often fragments left by a very ancient race. Almost every stone on the surface will show traces of some use by man if one looks' (23). He described his experiences with these Rock Books by noting that when they are first examined the images appear to be jumbles of faces and other things lumped together. Shaver developed several techniques by which he was able to draw out the most dominant images for study.

On one occasion Shaver discovered that one of his rocks was an actual working Rock Book. A holographic image, projected from the rock, explained to Shaver that Rock Books were the remains of 'a vast memory storage system from a civilization that has been dead for so long that I do not have the proper information to tell you in how many years that it disappeared' (36). Shaver realized that if he could unlock the secret of the Rock Books the world would benefit tremendously from the knowledge and insight that they contain.

Not everyone was happy with Shaver's progress, however. He awoke on one occasion to find himself in a strange cavern. His arms and legs were chained to the cavern wall. As his eyes adjusted to the darkness, a truly terrible sight appeared before him:

The room I was in was a hollowed out cavity in rock. Slimy water oozed through fissures and dripped onto the floor. Nearby were a couple of burning torches hung on the walls, but they did little to penetrate the gloom . . .

Out of the darkness came a sight almost too incredible to believe. Four misshapen creatures lurched forwards, laboring under the weight of a large chair that they carried on their shoulders. And seated in the chair was a sight that is forever burned into my memory. It was the stuff of insanity.

I knew at once that I was in the den of a Dero. The sickening creature sat on his throne like a prince from Hades and regarded me with tiny red eyes that seemed to glow with a hellish fire from deep within his skull.

Its body was enormously fat and bloated, with yellowish-gray, bristly skin covered in seeping sores and lumpy tumors. The face resembled a burn victim with the skin hanging in great, fat folds across the forehead, cheeks and chin. The hands were strong and hairy, ending in long, sharp, and filthy fingernails.

It was obviously a male, as he was completely nude. His penis was almost hidden amongst the rolls of fat that hung down from his belly, but it was clearly grotesque in size and covered with warts like some obscene animal. When he smiled, I could see a mouth full of sharp teeth. Without a doubt he was a carnivore who had not missed many meals in his life.

'See,' it hissed at me through his inhuman teeth, 'am I not as handsome as you imagined?' (62)

Shaver was forced to participate in an orgy with human women, under the influence of the stim ray and warned that he should give the working Rock Book to the Dero at once. Shaver was returned home and was never able to make the Rock Book work again. One hopes that the Dero left him alone.

For those interested in seeing the kinds of terrible/beautiful things that Shaver saw, there is a way that does not involve physical abductions or psychic viewing. Shaver's paintings based on his analysis of the Rock Books are really quite visually stunning. Doug Harvey, in L.A. Weekly, described Shaver's paintings, then on display in California, in impressive terms (March 20, 2002). He described how Shaver sliced the rock in cross-sections and stared at them until images appeared and how he would sometimes project the images from the rocks onto canvases and then paint them, creating 'thickly textured interpretations of the complex scenes he had excavated.' Harvey goes on to wonder 'why this fascinating work - which on visual terms alone ranks with the Surrealist paintings of Max Ernst and Jean Dubuffet - hasn't been afforded a more complete retrospective.'

Shaver certainly conjured up some terrifyingly ugly images. He produced some beautiful ones as well.

By the time we return to the surface world, the world of light and warmth, I am physically (and emotionally) exhausted. I want to simply collapse on the warm earth until the cold and wet has seeped out of my body. Instead, I follow my leaders down into a ravine, running with cold water. Along the way my muddy boots slip and I tumble and smash my arm into a rock. I realize that my boots, clothes and equipment are all covered in mud. The clean water of the creek is to be used to wash some of it off. It is clear, however, as I splash the water onto my clothes that this is a fruitless endeavor. The mud is not coming off. There is simply not enough water and it is not moving with

21. Alex Reid, Shauna MacDonald and Nora Jane Doone in The Descent (2005). This is going to end badly. Image courtesy of the Kobal Collection.

adequate force, to do any more than just move the mud around. I think that if backpackers were to come upon our group at this moment they would probably mistake us for Sasquatch, or Dero.

Indeed, that is how I feel. I have become a subterranean creature, more wild than tame, more mud than man. One would not think that being covered in mud would be enough to make a grown man cry, but along with the total exhaustion it comes close. I am about to panic. I imagine that my skin is permanently stained, that my body has undergone some sort of chemical change so that I am now one with mother earth, like Swamp Thing, only with cave mud instead of swamp muck, like Sandman, only with mud instead of sand. I have been down to the realm of the Dero, with their evil technology and their insatiable sexual appetites, and I have made it back to the surface dirty, very dirty.

Then I notice one of our group emerging from a small cavern in the side of the hill, the water of the creek flowing all around him. He is clean. He motions for me to come over and he points me into the small cave. I crawl along the creek for just a few feet and then the ceiling of the cave suddenly rises far above my head. The sound of rushing water is deafening. It is a waterfall. I stand under it and am almost knocked back down by the force. I can feel the mud being washed away.

I am clean again.

In the caverns of madness. Is this where it all leads? If we leave our world open for Bigfoot; for Chupacabras and Nessie; for Star People and Forest Friends; for Atlantis, Lemuria, and Mu, is this where we are bound to end up? In the caverns of madness.

It is easy to lose our way. The caverns are dark. The paths are not straight.

What began as science - in the hands of Halley and others -became something weird in the hands of Symmes, Reed, Gardner, and Bernard. In the hands of Shaver, it became absolutely bizarre. Symzonia becomes Agharta becomes Naziland, becomes the caverns of madness. Dero, the evil Dero, ever under our feet. Stim rays and Rock Books beyond believable.

Some seek out this world, this kingdom that lies where hell ought to be. Hitler sought it, or so we are told. Admiral Byrd found the way by plane. Others promise to sail there by boat. Robbins teaches us to prepare for their coming. Yet Shaver gives us the warning. With great pleasure comes great pain. With great promise comes great fear. With great wonders come great terrors. Shaver stands there, imagining the faces of beautiful women in the patterns of dried urine, envisioning torture as sex and sex as torture.

I don't know how many people believe that the earth is hollow, or that subterranean caverns are home to beings both good and evil. I suspect fewer than believe in Bigfoot, fewer than believe in Atlantis. Out of those who believe these things, I don't know how many turn to Shaver rather than Robbins; to detrimental robots, the Abandondero, rather than Shambala. I hope, for their sakes, that their numbers are few.


Alien Brainwaves from Space!

Ancient Wonders

I am traveling to the heart of Mormon country to attend the 2007 Extraordinary Technology Conference sponsored by the Tesla Tech Institute. As soon as the plane lands I will pick up a rental car and make my way to the meeting site as quickly as I can. I am hoping to make it in time to see the demonstration of a working flying saucer.

The pilot tells the crew to prepare for landing in Salt Lake City and we are beginning our descent toward the runway. I have done this many times. I know exactly what to expect. Like so many members of contemporary society, air travel has become commonplace for me. It is hard to imagine that only 100 years ago this would have been unthinkable. It is hard to imagine that for centuries, perhaps millennia, people dreamed of sailing among the clouds. All I can think of is that my legs are stiff and that I will be very glad to get off the plane. I anticipate the landing.

The expected bump of terra firma does not come. Instead there is a brief shudder and we begin to gain altitude again. We are not landing.

The pilot informs us that there was another aircraft blocking our runway. Instead of landing, we will circle around and try again. This is more than a little unnerving. I suspect that we all owe the pilot a word of thanks. But we are all right now. I try to sit back and relax.

Our new path carries us over the salt flats of the Great Salt Lake. I see from the air that it is bigger than I imagined - almost a sea, even though the state has been in a drought and the water is very low. The red-and-white landscape must surely look like the surface of Mars or some post-nuclear landscape from a distant dystopian future. I expect to see John Carter bounding across the seabed with the super strength granted him by the low Martian gravity and the thin Martian atmosphere, followed by his faithful calot.

Indeed, Edgar Rice Burroughs, creator of John Carter, lived here briefly before he became the famous author of Tarzan. Perhaps he drew his inspiration for Mars from this landscape, and from the stories in The Book of Mormon. The followers of Joseph Smith came here many years before that. They had been chased across the country and must have decided that this desolate land was a good home for a band of outsiders. It must have looked like they imagined the Promised Land, complete with its own Dead Sea. No one else wanted this land. They would take it.

Their story began when Joseph Smith was visited by an angel, given an ancient manuscript, and learned the wonders of the ancient past.


There gleamed the car with wealth untold

Of precious gems and burnished gold;

Nor could the Wind-God's son withdraw

His rapt gaze from the sight he saw,

By Vis'vakarma's self proclaimed

The noblest work his hand had framed.

Uplifted in the air it glowed

Bright as the sun's diurnal road.

The eye might scan the wondrous frame

And vainly seek one spot to blame,

So fine was every part and fair

With gems inlaid with lavish care.

No precious stones so rich adorn

The cars wherein the Gods are borne,

Prize of the all-resistless might

That sprang from pain and penance rite,

Obedient to the master's will

It moved o'er wood and towering hill,

A glorious marvel well designed

By Vis'vakarma's artist mind,

Adorned with every fair device

That decks the cars of Paradise.

Swift moving as the master chose

It flew through air or sank or rose.

India's epic Ramayana, like other ancient Indian documents, describes amazing aircraft, at once beautiful and swift. Moving at the will of its driver, these vimaanas are described as chariots of the gods, as playthings of the wealthy, and as war machines bringing death from the air. While mainstream interpretations relegate the vimaanas to the stuff of legend and mythology, there is a long tradition of taking these tales at face value. Many see in the description of the vimaanas evidence that ancient India was at least as technologically advanced as our own civilization.

Adding to the mystery of the vimaanas is a strange text called the Vaimanika Shastra, a text with a pedigree that is almost as mysterious as the vimaanas themselves. According to G.R. Josyer, who translated the work into English, the text of the Vaimanika Shastra was written by Pandit Subbaraya Sastry in the early years of the twentieth century. The author claimed, however, that he had only channeled a text that had actually been written in ancient India by Marashi Bharadwaja. The content of the channeled document was quite interesting. It was a manual for the design and operation of vimaanas. Josyer, in his introduction, describes Pandit Subbaraya Sastry in glowing terms. He was, according to Josyer, 'a simple, orthodox intellectual Brahmin with spiritual gifts who was esteemed by all who knew him . . . He was a walking lexicon gifted with occult perception' (vii-viii). Despite the tantalizing topic of the manuscript, Josyer indicates that funds were unavailable for its publication until Josyer took it upon himself to make the effort in 1973.

The text indicates that the operation of the vimaanas requires knowledge of 32 secrets, with which the pilot should become well acquainted before attempting to fly the craft. Among other things, 'He must know the structure of the aeroplane, know the means of its take off and ascent to the sky, know how to drive it and how to halt it when necessary, how to maneuver it and make it perform spectacular feats in the sky without crashing' (2-3). In addition to the basics of flight, the pilot must also be prepared with the proper type of clothing and the proper food. Sounding like something one might purchase in a health food store, pilots are encouraged to extract the essence from food and form it into food balls for consumption on long flights. (Now that I think about it, this sounds a little like airline food.)

Details of the construction of vimaanas are offered as well, including details of special mirrors that can protect the craft from harm. Among these potential threats are the pilots of other aircraft:

When enemy planes with men intent on intercepting and destroying your vimaana attack you with all the means at their disposal, the viroopya-darpana will frighten them into retreat or render them unconscious and leave you free to destroy or rout them. The darpana, like a magician, will change the appearance of your vimaana into such frightening shapes that the attacker will be dismayed or paralysed. (24)

In addition to information regarding the use of protective mirrors, more basic elements of the crafts' construction are also included:

In order to enable the wings on either side to spread and flap, proper hinges and keys should be provided for, safely fixing them to the sides of the vimaana, and for enabling them to fold and open easily.

The revolving tractor blades in the front should be duly fixed to the heating engine with rods so that they could dispel the wind in front and facilitate the passage of the vimaana. (92)

While many people view this text as little more than a bit of modern science fiction dressed up to look like a document from ancient India, others have taken it very seriously. Among those is David Hatcher Childress, founder of the World Explorers Club and Adventures Unlimited Press, and self-described 'real Indiana Jones.' Childress not only supports the idea of ancient Indian aircraft, he has himself added details to the mystery, as in his The Anti-Gravity Handbook. According to Childress, ancient Sanskrit documents have been found in Tibet that contain information concerning the construction of interstellar space-ships. The method of propulsion for these craft, called Astra, was a form of anti-gravity power known as 'laghima.' Laghima is a power source that resides within the human ego. It is the same power that allows the Hindu fakir to levitate. Childress says that it is unclear whether the Astra were ever used to send people to other planets, though there is some evidence that they may have reached the moon. He goes on to claim that the Ramayana details a battle fought on the moon against an Atlantean air-ship.


Childress also elaborates on his readings of other ancient Indian documents and offers up clear descriptions of the ancient vimaana. According to Childress, a typical vimaana was a:

double-deck, circular aircraft with portholes and a dome, much as we would imagine a flying saucer. It flew with the 'speed of the wind' and gave forth a 'melodious sound.' There were at least four different types of Vimaanas; some saucer shaped, others like long cylinders ('cigar shaped airships'). (131)

Some vimaanas were powered by a 'yellowish-white liquid' and others by a compound of mercury. He writes:

The 'yellowish-white liquid' sounds suspiciously like gasoline, and perhaps Vimaanas had a number of different propulsion sources, including combustion engines and even 'pulse-jet' engines. It is interesting to note, that the Nazis developed the first practical pulse-jet engines for their V-8 rocket 'buzz bombs.' Hitler and the Nazi staff were exceptionally interested in ancient India and Tibet and sent expeditions to both these places yearly, starting in the 30's, in order to gather esoteric evidence that they did so, and perhaps it was from these people that the Nazis gained some of their scientific information! (131)

Childress claims that Soviet scientists discovered hemispherical glass or porcelain cones that contained a drop of mercury inside. These devices, found in the Gobi desert, have been identified as 'age-old instruments used in navigating cosmic vehicles.'

Childress suggests that these craft may have been flown around the earth. If so, the world of the ancient past must have looked a lot more like ours than we can possibly imagine. Did the Raman empire of India have airports in locations around the globe? Childress notes that the Rongorongo writing of Easter Island, still undeciphered, looks amazingly similar to ancient Indian script. Was Easter Island an outpost of the far-flung Rama Empire, its great stone monuments perhaps built by the locals using the anti-gravity technology of the Ramans?

Was Easter Island an air base for the Rama Empire's Vimaana route? (At the Mohenjo-Daro Vimana-drome, as the passenger walks down the concourse, he hears the sweet, melodic sound of the announcer over the loudspeaker, 'Rama Airways flight number seven for

Bali, Easter Island, Nazca, and Atlantis is now ready for boarding. Passengers please proceed to gate number . . .') (132)

In Lost Cities of Ancient Lemuria and the Pacific, Childress claims that the oral tradition of the islanders describes the huge statues as having moved from the place where they were quarried to their current position along the shore by walking - specifically by walking in a clockwise spiral around the island. He writes:

There was certainly something more than statues on sleds, or even walking them on ropes. Even mental power would not have to conform to such a strange law as would have the statues walk in a clockwise spiral around the island.

. . . The only explanation that made even reasonable sense to me was the the statues were somehow moved using the natural earth energies and possibly the magnetic anomaly in the crater of Ranoi Aroi. Therefore, in this theory, the ancients used some sort of natural 'anti-gravity.' (320)

Erich von Daniken, in Chariots of the Gods, suggests that evidence of the aeronautical history of the island can be found in the name given to the place by its original inhabitants, 'The Land of the Bird Men.' He writes: 'An orally transmitted legend tells us that flying men landed and lighted fires in ancient times. The legend is confirmed by sculptures of flying creatures with big, staring eyes' (111).

The technology of the vimaanas was reportedly brought into the modern world in 1895, some eight years prior to the Wright Brothers' famous flight. According to one website, Sanskrit scholar Shikvar Bapuji Talpade built and flew an unmanned aircraft called Marutsakthi (Power of the Air) in that year ( Based on Vedic technology, the aircraft is reported to have flown to a height of 1,500 feet before a large group of observers. The aircraft made use of the mercury vortex engine described in the Vaimanika Shastra. This website goes on to report that NASA is currently attempting to develop spacecraft powered by such an engine:

The aircraft engines being developed for future use by NASA by some strange coincidence also uses mercury bombardment units powered by Solar cells! Interestingly, the impulse is generated in seven stages. The mercury propellant is first vapourised, fed into the thruster discharge chamber, ionized, converted into plasma by a combination with electrons, broke down electrically, and then accelerated through small openings in a screen to pass out of the engine at velocities between 1200 to 3000 kilometres per minute! But so far NASA has been able to produce on an experimental basis only a one pound of thrust by its scientists a power derivation virtually useless. But 108 years ago Talpade was able to use his knowledge of Vaimanika Shastra to produce sufficient thrust to lift his aircraft 1500 feet into the air!

Unfortunately the British government did not approve of Talpade's experiments in flight, perhaps because they did not like to be shown up by Indian scientists. After a warning from the British government, the Maharaja of Broda refused funding for Talpade's experiments. His work was forced to come to an abrupt end. Penniless, Talpade was forced to sell the remains of the craft to 'foreign parties' in order to pay back his debtors. This, complicated by the death of his wife, left Talpade unable to contemplate the continuation of his efforts. 'Talpade passed away in 1916 un-honoured, in his own country. As the world rightly honours the Wright Brothers for their achievements, we should think of Talpade, who utilised the ancient knowledge of Sanskrit texts, to fly an aircraft, eight years before his foreign counterparts.'

According to some ancient technologists, India was not the only ancient civilization to achieve flight. Lumir G. Janku, for example, argues that there is plentiful archaeological evidence to support the theory that flight was achieved by the ancient Egyptian and Central and South American civilizations. He cites the discovery in an Egyptian tomb in 1898 of a wooden object first labeled 'wooden bird model.' However, closer analysis revealed elements that seemed to suggest that the original classification was incorrect. According to Janku, the model:

has the exact proportions of a very advanced form of 'pusher-glider' that is still having 'some bugs ironed out'. This type of glider will stay in the air almost by itself and even a very small engine will keep it going at low speeds, as low as 45 to 65 mph., while it can carry an enormous payload. This ability is dependent on the curious shape of wings and their proportions. The tipping of wings downward, a reverse dihedral wing as it is called, is the feature behind this capability. A similar type of curving wings are implemented on the Concorde airplane, giving the plane a maximum lift without detracting from its speed. In that context, it seems rather incredible that someone, more than 2,000 years ago, for any reason, devised a model of a flying device with such advanced features, requiring quite extensive knowledge of aerodynamics. (

Other ancient civilizations have left behind evidence that air travel may not be exclusive to modern civilizations. Gold objects discovered in Central and South America dating back more than 1,000 years also seem to be models of aircraft. Once again, as in Egypt, the objects were originally thought to be models of animals, in this case birds or fish, and, once again, closer examination reveals them to be much more. Janku argues that, 'When all the features are taken into an account, the object does not look like a representation of any known animal at all, but does look astonishingly like an airplane.'

Janku also finds evidence for ancient aircraft in the pages of the Hebrew Bible. The Book of Ezekiel, for example, describes what might be seen as an encounter between a man of a non-technological culture with an aircraft from a more advanced culture. He writes, 'There is no shortage of descriptions of flying machines in ancient sources. If we try to extract the core of myths of different provenience and remove the embellishments, we discover to our surprise that flying in ancient times seems to be the rule, not the exception.'

Of course, one would expect that if ancient civilizations could fly through the air then they, like their modern counterparts, would discover ways to use such aircraft for the purposes of warfare. Examining passages from the Indian Mahabharata, Desmond Leslie and George Adamski believe that evidence of the use of aircraft to deliver nuclear weapons can be found. He quotes an interesting passage from the ancient document:

A blazing missle that possessed the radiance of smokeless fire was discharged. A thick gloom suddenly encompassed the hosts. All points of the compass were suddenly encompassed in darkness. Evil-bearing winds began to blow. Clouds roared into the higher air, showering blood. The very elements seemed confused. The sun appeared to spin round. The world, scorched by the heat of that weapon, seemed to be in a fever . . . The very water being heated, the creatures who live in the water seemed to burn . . . Huge elephants, burned by that weapon, fell all around. (95-6)

Leslie takes this to be the description of the use by the ancients of some form of cataclysmic weapon. He finds other indications that the weapon in question was radioactive, particularly a passage that describes the soldiers' response to the blast. According to Leslie, the soldiers who survived the blast rushed quickly to the nearest water. There, they stripped off their armor and washed it and themselves:

22. Does this Easter Island statue depict a man dying of radiation sickness?

Now why should they stop to have a bath and wash their armour in water . . . at a moment like this, unless they were frightened of being contaminated by something - unless some peculiar quality had been imparted to their armour by the blast that they knew would be fatal unless swiftly counteracted? (97)

In other words, Leslie thinks that the ancient soldiers were trying to protect themselves from the dangerous radiation unleashed by an atomic bomb.

Childress believes that there is evidence on Easter Island for the use of nuclear energy by the Rama Empire. For example, the kava kava statues found on the island depict emaciated figures. According to legend, these figures were inspired by gaunt bodies lying upon the island shore, as seen in the vision of an ancient king. Childress (1988) describes his encounter with the strange figures:

Looking at the shrunken, almost mutated figure, I could not help but think that they bore a striking resemblance to someone dying of radiation sickness . . . Was it possible that this was some sort of bizarre memory of radiation victims from that global war of prehistory? If the king was psychic, maybe he somehow saw the 'Spirit' (after all, a kava kava is a spirit, according to the islanders) of one of these victims. Suddenly, I wondered again about all those vitrified masses of rock around the island, particularly the one near Anakena Beach that I had seen which was surrounded by a massive wall. Was a major battle in the supposed war between Atlantis and Rama fought on Easter Island? (323)

I am running late. My rental car does not travel at the speed of a vimaana, especially not the kind I can afford on my budget.

I have already missed a demonstration of a working model of a flying saucer, but I am told that I didn't miss much. The model had been damaged in transport and did not actually fly. Perhaps it had been cargo on my own flight, parts shaken loose in our near-collision with another plane.

I do make it in time to hear a lecture by Dan Davidson, the author of Shape Power, a book that investigates the power of shapes to focus and alter energies. I settle into my seat in a large auditorium on the campus of a junior college. I am a little surprised at the number of people here today. I have to admit, most of them look like eccentric inventors or mad scientists. There are no lab coats, but there are lots of bad haircuts, ill-fitting polyester shirts, horn-rimmed glasses, and pocket protectors. The group seems to represent all ages, though they are almost entirely men. Out of 100 or so people in the audience, I see three women. Davidson himself is dressed better than the average audience member and looks healthy and fit. He is doing a good job of holding the attention of the crowd. Many of them are furiously taking notes.

According to Davidson, 'Shape converts the universal ether, the space energy, into other forces such as electrostatic, gravitic, and magnetism.' Today, Davidson is discussing the Joe Cell, something that I know a little about. The Joe Cell, named after a mechanic called 'Joe X' who helped to perfect it, consists of a cylinder composed of concentric stainless-steel pipes. When filled with simple water and attached to an automobile engine it can reportedly increase fuel efficiency by as much as 70 per cent. Of course, mainstream engineers insist that it cannot work, but it has many supporters.

Davidson's thesis is that it is the shape of the Joe Cell that enables it to function. The shape of the cell means that the device serves as a perfect ether collector. Among other things, he argues that his shape theory can explain how the water in the Joe Cell is converted into a combustible fuel without being depleted and how the fuel from the Joe Cell can affect the engine even though it is not directly connected to the engine's airstream.

Davidson also claims that Joe Cells can be used to collect Orbitally Re-arranged Mono-Atomic Elements, or ORMEs. By exposing oneself to ORMEs collected in a Joe Cell, an individual may experience health benefits. Davidson invites members of the audience to look at him as an example. He has been using the Joe Cell in this way for the last several months. Not only has his balding stopped, but new hair has started to grow. The new hair is not coming in gray, either.

Improved gas mileage and a cure for baldness - all thanks to the power of shapes. Of course, Davidson is hardly the first to make such a claim.

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