In a fit of masochism, I have been watching the History channel’s four-part (!) series on “ancient aliens”. The producers of the show seem to believe in them. I am amazed at how the self proclaimed experts on this program can happily ignore facts, logic and social context to insist that pretty much everything in the past proves that beings from another planet came down and convinced idiot humans that they were gods and then taught them just enough to build pyramids and kill each other more efficiently before zipping back into the sky.
Some proofs offered include representations of the earth as a globe in the Middle Ages, obviously a sign of alien inspiration since “everyone believed the earth was flat”. Of course, that’s a myth invented in the nineteenth century. Anyone who cared knew, and could prove mathematically, that the earth was round. However, the facile logic of the believers is so good that they would probably answer that the aliens had taught man that. Medieval thinkers couldn’t possibly have had the math or the brains to figure it out.
The speakers drag in so many random facts and tie them together like a giant macrame that it’s impossible to untangle them. One point they make is that cultures that were unconnected practiced binding to elongate the head – obviously to imitate the gods. Most societies also pierced ears and noses to insert jewelry. Do aliens also have objects hanging from ears and noses, perhaps communication devices or an unfortunate disease that they are hunting the universe to find a cure for? With no need to worry about logic and evidence, the possibilities are endless.
As to how this connects to the end of the world – well, Noah’s flood, which I mention in my section on Gilgamesh in THE REAL HISTORY OF THE END OF THE WORLD, was caused by angry aliens and they also told the Mayans to end their calendar in 2012 since they were planning another apocalyptic disaster.
Honestly, I don’t see the difference in the minds of the “experts” between aliens and gods. It’s just another religion. If one has faith then even the most illogical statements can be explained away.
If you are also feeling masochistic, the website for the show is http://www.history.com/shows/ancient-aliens
Personally, I think it’s just another way of refusing to be responsible for making the world better. The aliens are clearly the only ones with the power so the rest of us can only sit back and wait for them.