The Ancient Bimini Harbor: Uncovering the Great Bimini Hoax
produced by Gregory L. Little, Ed.D.
ATAMemphis Archetypal Productions
Forgotten History Series
DVD, 73 minutes, 2005
Available from: Adventures Unlimited Press Phone: 1 (815) 253-6390
Reviewed by Brent Raynes
Back in 1968, a controversial discovery was made in the Bahamas about a mile offshore of the small island of Bimini. Under only about twenty feet of water a 1600-foot long formation of stone blocks was found. It resembled a stone causeway, and thus became known as the Bimini Road. Soon various researchers connected this discovery to a 1940 psychic reading of Americas famous Sleeping Prophet Edgar Cayce that predicted how a portion of Atlantis would be found near Bimini in 1968 and 1969. But within a short time a small group of skeptical geologists published articles asserting that the underwater stone formation was simply natural limestone that had formed on the beach. The geologists claims became accepted as fact by the academic community.
Dr. Greg Little had initially believed what the skeptical geologists had alleged about the so-called Bimini Road until 2004. That year, as well as the year before, Greg and his wife Lora had both been diving and photographing this formation of underwater stones and some things that they were seeing seemed to vary from what the skeptics had claimed.
Thus in May 2005, Greg, Lora, and their friend and colleague Doris Van Auken, on behalf of the Association for Research and Enlightenment, joined up with archaeologist William Donato to try and resolve this matter once and for all. In five full days at Bimini Road, diving and collecting samples, taking just under 1000 photos and producing over 20 hours of video, this team had arrived at some startling discoveries and conclusions that had not been reported by the presumed expert geologists. The 2005 ARE team and Donato found at least eight ancient stone anchors, rectangular slabs of cut stone used for leveling large stone blocks, stones with mortise cuts on them, and many stone circles. Why and how the geologists had missed these things became a frequent topic of discussion among the team members.
Despite the teams exhausting efforts and hard work to observe and document as much of the site that they could, Dr. Greg Little states in his narration of this video that they had probably been able to closely examine and inspect less than ten percent of the stone blocks. Skeptic Eugene Shinn had claimed that he made a thorough study of the site in only two weekends, which the team regarded as not possible. His published findings in Nature and the Skeptical Inquirer were found to be riddled with numerous errors and blunders. He attempted to put down anyone who disagreed with him as part of the lunatic fringe. He wrote that true believers say it is a prehistorical archaeological site built by extraterrestrials from the Pleiades. Though Shinn has been described by skeptics as an eminent and well-respected geologist, it turned out that he only had a bachelors degree in biology. Geologist John Gifford, of the University of Miami, had written that there was not a single example of a stone block laid on top of other stone blocks at this site, but the ARE team found that there were many! When Greg had initially contacted Dr. Gifford, he stated that he was open to new findings, but when Greg informed him of their findings and offered to pay his way to the site, to reinspect it for himself, despite repeated attempts, communications from Dr. Gifford ceased.
Dr. Greg Little states that indeed a hoax was perpetrated at Bimini, but instead of being wild eyed believers in unfounded absurdities as the skeptics had claimed, it turned out to be the skeptical geologists themselves who had held the truth hostage and kept real scientific progress at bay. With emotional zeal, under the guise of science, the skeptics denounced evidence of the possibility of the so-called Bimini Road being anything other than a natural formation of stones. They seemed overzealous to suppress and lay to rest the questions and controversy over the sites discovery in connection with Atlantis and a psychic named Edgar Cayce.
As a result the academic community overlooked truly significant and anomalous evidence at this site, even though others with sound credentials and reputations had voiced opinions counter to those held by the skeptics. For example, in 1969 marine engineer Dr. Dimitri Rebikoff, regarded as a brilliant oceanographer, had stated that the Bimini Road was in fact identical to numerous ancient man-made harbor formations found throughout the Mediterranean. Rebikoff had also countered the skeptics when they claimed that there were no prop or leveling stones under the large blocks at Bimini Road.
The ARE team and Donato came to agree 36 years later with Dr. Rebikoffs 1969 assertion of an ancient man-made harbor at Bimini. In fact, the ARE team and Donato have really done their homework, and in this video you will see the comparisons between anchors, stone circle formations, the stone harbor formations, and other stone artifacts at Bimini and sites in the Mediterranean like Cosa, Italy, or Dor and Akko in Israel, and Samos, Greece, among many other places, and you will also see how remarkably the Bimini anchors compare with ancient Greek, Roman, and Phoenician anchors. And though Greg found the skeptical geologists skeptical also of the ancient harbor possibility, he and the rest of his ARE team had traveled to Isla Cerritos, a small island off the coast of the Yucatan, an ancient Mayan port back around 400 B.C., which has provided Central American archaeologists with solid proof that enclosed man-made harbors were a reality. The teams footage from this site is also quite remarkable and revealing.
There is simply not sufficient space in the body of this review to adequately cover all of the important and factual information presented in this truly remarkable video documentary. The masterful narration of Dr. Greg Little, along with the awesome job of photography that makes you feel like youre right there on the scene as these exciting investigations and discoveries unfold, not to mention some beautiful sequences that make you wish you too were in the Bahama waters, all of this and more makes this 73 minute video an incredible adventure and documentary. And, hopefully as indicated at the end of this film, another will soon be forthcoming. ______________________________________________________________________
The Templars and the Ark of the Covenant: The Discovery of the Treasure of Solomon
By Graham Phillips
Bear & Co. One Park Street Rochester, Vermont 05767
2004, 256 pages, $16.00 16 page color insert, 9 b&w maps ISBN: 159143039-9
Reviewed by W. Ritchie Benedict
It seems that the massive popularity of the Dale Brown thriller The Da Vinci Code has created a veritable cottage industry for books about the Knights Templar and the hidden treasure at Rennes-le-Chateau. During a recent excursion to a local book store, I counted at least nine titles on the subject. Of course, all of these efforts will be of varying quality, depending on the scholarship of the author.
This book is not about Rennes-le-Chateau, and whatever may or may not have been hidden there for centuries. Rather, it is about the mysterious Ark of the Covenant, best known to the public through the first Indiana Jones movie Raiders of the Lost Ark. The Ark supposedly is a gold chest-like artifact capable of wielding immense destruction. Some have speculated that it originated with a highly advanced extraterrestrial or terrestrial civilization. Of course, the traditional religious explanation is that the Ark harnessed the power of God. At one point, the Philistines captured the Ark and took it back to their capital city of Ashod. Which did not do them a lot of good, as they appear to have lacked the knowledge of how to handle it. When they tried to unleash it against rebel forces they were fighting, it not only killed the rebels, but the Philistines as well. The upshot was, that before it was returned to the Israelis, it killed over 50,000 people. One aspect of the legend I had not heard of before is revealed here. Only the high priest wearing the Breastplate of Judgement, studded with 12 precious stones (the Stones of Fire), was capable of handling this early Weapon of Mass Destruction safely.
The problem with books dealing with early Middle Eastern or Biblical matters is that often they are so full of detail about the religious and political history of the time, to the extent that your eyes begin to glaze over. It is a credit to the author that he largely avoids this pitfall and presents some unique theories in a popular readable form. For example, he speculates that the ancient plagues of Egypt (locusts, frogs, etc.) may have originated from the immense volcanic eruption on the island of Thera, somewhere around 1360 B.C. Egypt was in a direct line of the fallout. It is estimated that this volcano was 6 times more powerful than the 1883 eruption of Krakatoa, which disrupted worldwide weather systems for several years thereafter.
Phillips has some unique ideas about the prophet Moses and thinks he may have been a full-blooded Egyptian named Tuthmose. Not much is known about this figure, but he was the heir to the throne. His personal profile and that of Moses appear to match in a number of aspects. Curiously, the tomb for Tuthmose was completed but never used. He vanished from history, and another member of the royal family, Akhenaten became Pharaoh. Was it because Tuthmose was in disgrace for leading the displaced Israelites?
There is a tale that the Ark still exists in the Ethiopian town of Axum, housed in the local chapel, but it has proved impossible to confirm whether it is genuine or a replica, as the religious authorities refuse to allow anyone with historical knowledge to examine it. Other theories state that it is hidden in Egypt, or never left the immediate vicinity of where it was originally housed. If it is still in a cave, it may be impossible to locate, due to the changes in the topography.
Certainly, what we do know is that the Israelites had to remove their precious artifacts and hide them, not once but several times, when their temples were looted and destroyed. The last records were about 622 B.C. and it is thought the Ark may have been removed during the Babylonian invasion, when the Jerusalem Temple was pillaged.
So how do the Knights Templar figure in this scenario? Phillips carefully traces what happened from the first reference to the Ark in the Bible, through the chaos of war and invasion to the tradition that Jeremiah had hidden valuable religious artifacts in a secret cave on Mount Sinai.
It appears that one Ralph de Sudeley was sent to command a Templar garrison in the Valley of Edom. After a stay of two years, he returned to England in 1189, suddenly becoming very wealthy. The Templars ran afoul of King Edward II and even worse the Black Death of 1350, so whatever treasures they possessed, once again would have to go into hiding. The author says he became interested in the claims of a rebel Victorian historian named Cove Jones, who was either an accomplished liar or had his hands on something of fantastic importance, which he had hidden with cryptic clues prior to this death in 1907. Through some amazing synchronistic events, Phillips and his associates managed to locate three unusual stones, hidden for nearly a century, that they believe were part of the Stones of Fire arrangement. The fourth and final prize remains elusive. Color photos document these discoveries, including a strange red ball of fire at Farnborough Lake that the stones may have summoned.
Although any book dealing with ancient secrets is going to be largely a matter of speculation, Phillips makes a very credible case, and his long and winding search for the truth makes for a gripping narrative. Definitely a cut above many other books relating to the Templar mysteries. Quite fascinating.