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Roger Coghill – Extinction and the Ages of Man

Identifier

021734

Type of Spiritual Experience

None

Background

Background showing the cohesiveness of views about the number of ages

A description of the experience

Roger Coghill – Extinction and the Ages of Man


One of those aspects of history we have repeatedly refused to make reference to is the written works of our ancestors the world over who have referred to such periods [of change and extinction].

  • China - Consider, for example, some of the Asian teachings on the subject, such as those in ancient China. Perished ages were called kis by the Chinese, and they number ten kis from the world's beginning until Confucius. The periods between great convulsions of Nature are discussed in the Sing-li-ta-tsiuen-chou, an ancient encyclopedia, and are called the "great year." During this "great year" the entire cosmos "winds up," and then, "in a great convulsion of Nature, the sea is carried out of its bed, mountains spring out of the ground, rivers change their course, human beings and everything are ruined and the ancient traces effaced." The Taoist scriptures speak of a time that "disturbs the regular method of heaven, comes into collision with the nature of things, prevents the accomplishment of the mysterious (operation of) heaven, scatters the herds of animals, makes the birds all sing at night, is calamitous to vegetation, and disastrous to all insects [and] the six elemental influences do not act in concord."
  • Middle East - There are also Middle Eastern sources. Buddhism has the chapter, "World Cycles," in the Visuddhi-Magga, in which we find that, "There are three destructions: the destruction by water, the destruction by fire, the destruction by wind." The Brahmans of Hinduism called the epochs between two periods, "The Great Days," much like the Chinese. Hinduism expounds on ages, called kalpas or yugas, and about episodes which are called paralayas, in which humankind was nearly put to an end, as found in the Bhagavata Purana and others. Worldwide fire (conflagration), flood and hurricane dominate the devouring forces of each world age. Similar expositions are also found in other sources, as well.
  • Near East - n the Near East the picture is similar. Mazdaism, an ancient Persian religion, makes reference to ages in the Zend-Avesta. Seven world ages are discussed in the "Bhaman Yast," a book in the Zend-Avesta. Its prophet, Zarathustra, speaks about the characteristics that are manifested in the world at the end of each age. Likewise, European sources reveal a similar understanding. According to Varro (116-27 BC), a Roman author, there were seven elapsed ages described in the annals of ancient Etruria (the believed predecessor of the Roman civilization). The Greeks had similar traditions related to them by Aristotle (384-322 BC) with words such as Kataklysmos, which means deluge, and Epyrosis, which means combustion of the world. Anaximenes and Anaximander spoke of such things in the 6th Century BC, as did Diogenes and Heraclitus in the 5th Century BC, and Aristarchus of Samos in the 3rd Century BC. The Stoics, a school of Greek philosophers founded by Zeno in about 308 BC, generally believed in periodic episodes in which the world would be consumed, and a new world is founded on its ashes.

 

What we see here are the prehistoric recorded vestiges of natural devastation cycles. But what caused them? Plato is very clear about that in his own version. The culprit was mankind itself. Having described with startling accuracy the existence of America, the Atlantic Ocean, and the geography of the Lusitanian coast, Plato explains that the great technological civilisation there was destroyed by Poseidon, the powerful God of all waves, in anger at mankind’s overweaning hubris. They believed their own technology would make them equal to the Gods, he explains to his assembled fellows on Mount Olympus. In punishment Poseidon covered the great city of Atlantis with a huge wave.
 

The source of the experience

The Ancestors

Concepts, symbols and science items

Symbols

Science Items

Mass Extinction

Activities and commonsteps

Activities

Commonsteps

References