NEW FLORES CAVE FOUND
In Indonesia archaeologists have now found a large cave on Flores island beneath the one where the remains of a tiny human were located four years ago. The bones which have become known as Homo Floresiensis have generated considerable controversy among scientists. On one hand are those who say the 30,000+-year-old skeleton represents a new species of human which they have called the Hobbitts, and on the other are the skeptics who say it is simply a deformed standard human. New research comparing the Flores skull with modern skulls has suggested that the creature is indeed a previously unknown species.
According to The Australian newspaper, though, the newly discovered cave has many bones, animal, if not human, which are expected to yield DNA, something the first discovery did not. The result, it is claimed, could lead to at least a partial resolution of the mystery. Archaeologists plan a follow-up expedition to the spot this summer.
Ever since the 2003 discovery of the Flores Island “hobbit,” there has been a new kid on the human evolutionary block who, by all accounts, must be reckoned with. The media covering homo floresiensis—the tiny skeletons found on a remote island east of Bali—is agog with characterizations, from the grandiose (“completely new to science,” “spectacular”) to guarded (“…changing our understanding…”)—to downright skeptical (“This find shows us how much we still have to learn about human evolution”). Even now, the story of the hobbit-like creatures, barely three feet tall, continues to trigger a “heated scientific shootout,” with diverse theories vying to explain these mini-humans with skulls “the size of grapefruits” and “oddly bulging eyes.”
Sworn-on-the-thigh to the conventional evolutionary paradigm, the multinational team of researchers cannot tell us where such tiny creatures fit on man’s family. Nevertheless, rejoices a prominent U of Cal paleontologist: “This is a splendid example of human evolution. I wish Charles Darwin…were here to see it.” The “splendid example” refers to the alleged shrinking of Flores Man, the assumption being that he “evolved” from normal size, thus adapting marvelously in an area (rain forest) with limited food supply. Such Island Dwarfing, as it is called, nicely explains Hobbit littleness, and buttresses well Darwin’s brainchildren: Survival (of the fittest) and (Natural) Selection.
But do we have to shrink our hobbit to make him fit our precious theories? May we not instead take him just as he is—another exemplar of the ubiquitous Little People who once, the evidence indicates, overspread planet Earth? Although hailed—with the pomp and glory of the scientific elite—as “the smallest human species ever discovered,” the designation is patently untrue.
For some unknown reason, the pygmies still extant in the world seem to have been entirely forgotten, even though they could well provide the best clues for understanding this troublesome hobbit whose unexpected appearance prompted Peter Brown, head of the discovering research team, to exclaim, “If you told me an alien spacecraft had landed on Flores, I would have been less surprised than by this discovery.” The “alien” allusion, as we shall see, is (ironically) prophetic; but, for context, let’s go back to the 19th century to the celebrated American medium Dr. J. B. Newbrough, who in his obscure work Oahspe, predicted that the Little People of the ancient day would be rediscovered in the modern era: “One was white, and the other was yellow. The yellow is discovered.” Still living are the “yellow” pygmies of Luzon, called Aetas, the oldest residents of the Philippine islands. This location, in the Pacific, said Newbrough, is significant, for they may be the only Little People who were not driven from their homeland in the Long Ago. In the mountains straddling China and Tibet, for example, images of the rising sun appear among cave paintings, symbolizing the East, i.e. the Pacific Ocean, east of China. This token of a lost homeland became a kind of trademark of the tribes who had been dispersed from the (sunken) land of the rising sun.
“And in all these countries [after the Flood or the end of the ice age] there were made images…and engravings [e.a.] … of the children of Noe, and of the flood, and of the sacred tribes, Shem, Ham, and Jaffeth.”
According to Newbrough, Jaffeth it was who lighted on the lands of Asia after the Deluge; and in the fastness of the Bayan-Kara-Ula range, in those same caves and caverns adorned with ancient art, extraordinary engraved discs were found in the 20th century, the Age of Rediscovery. Virtual time capsules, these stone “records” contain a form of grooved writing which, once deciphered, declares a celestial origin of the Dropa people who “came down out of the skies.”
The Dropa and Han tribes of this isolated region are miniscule, standing barely four feet tall, and defying every attempt at racial classification. Not surprisingly, Tibetan and Chinese folklore recalls small, pygmy-like people who came among them aeons ago by dropping from the sky. The Sky People are a not uncommon motif in the legends of the world’s people, just as “myths” of the Flood are nearly universal. One part earth and one part heaven, these ancestors of the Dropa were “people of spirit light,” en rapport with angelic beings… “And God sent his angels down to man, to inspire him in the workmanship of images and engravings[e.a.].”
The 12,000-year-old engraved (“grooved”) discs, with their otherworldly message, so deeply baffled archaeologists at the Bayan-Kara-Ula site that its publication was banned in Peking!
Yet, similar facts present themselves in other places. The earliest Alaskans, as indigenous tradition and extant artifacts allow, were master engravers/carvers with “fair hair and blue eyes.” Tracing these master carvers and painters, we find the Sky People in Hebrew legend as well, the immediate forbears of Noah (Noe) having preserved (antediluvian) knowledge on engraved pillars, under the inspiration of Holy Ones or Watchers. These celestial beings were called “I’rin,” the name strikingly similar in Oahspe’s “I’hin,” designating the white-skinned and white- (or yellow-) haired Little People who became extinct 3,500 years ago. Noah himself, according to the Book of Enoch, descended from those Holy Ones and was born “white as snow,” with hair “white as wool.” Radiant, “like a child of the angels,” the infant rose from the hand of the midwife, opened his mouth, and praised the Lord of Righteousness. All of which proved quite disturbing to his father who feared the wonder of this strange birth, until his grandfather Enoch explained the heavenly-earthly intermixing that had taken place “in the time of Jared, my father.” Sky-People, in Levantine dress.
Noah’s son Jaffeth, it seems, populated parts of Asia after the Deluge and here again is evidence of those snow-white carvers: Jaffeth (now “Iapetos”), according to Flood legends of the region, escaped to Mt. Ida in a boat of skins. He went on, the story goes, to found the grand city of Troy, whose people, according to Heinrich Schliemann (the discoverer of Troy), “had a great taste for art” and produced exquisite carvings and inscribed earthenware vessels. Excavating the royal palace, Schliemann also came upon women’s bracelets small enough to fit a nine-year-old. Other works typical of the Little People, such as the colossal mortuary mounds on the plains of Troy, have been discovered in Asia Minor—where ancient myth recalls the founding Mother as “an exquisite, delicate, milk-white [e.a.] maid.”
In Africa, too, there is a legend of “white gods” who brought civilization to the people. When “highly artistic” cave paintings were discovered in the Kalahari desert, they were thought to be “the work of a mysterious race of white people.”
And they were quite little; if we can connect that mysterious race to Boskop man, discovered in South Africa, who supposedly lived about 10,000 years ago in South Africa and had a brain capacity roughly 30% larger than the average human today. Celebrated science writer Loren Eiseley used the term “fetalized” to describe the littleness and childlike appearance of Boskop man, whose jaw was delicate, teeth small and graceful. Eiseley pictured the owner of those teeth “nibbling sedately at the Waldorf” (dining, perchance, with Flores man of “delicate dentition”?) Eiseley rhapsodizes about Boskop man!—these “first true men,” with their refined facial structure, complex brain, and high artistic sensitivity. Though long extinct, their genes live on in their mixed descendants—the Bushmen of the Kalahari.
The modern Bushman—today a fast-vanishing race—shows distinctly Boskopoid features. Yellow-skinned and “dwarfed,” the Bushman is yet perfectly proportioned, like the tiny I’hins and the Flores hobbit whose brain, though small, was apparently “highly evolved.”
The palest of all African peoples, the delicate “yellow” Bushman, also betrays close kinship with the “gifted” forbear we have been discussing. Strongly telepathic, these handsome little folk, gentle in their ways, are clearly reminiscent of Noah’s descendants (Ham, in Africa). People-of-spirit-light, their “Lord of Righteousness” (see baby-Noah) bears the same ancient name as that of all the “sacred tribes”—Huve. Elsewhere that name morphs into Jove, Jah, Jahoba, Jehova, Jehanoai, Jehovih, Yohewa, Yave, YHVH, Yahweh, etc.
Loren Eiseley, ever intrigued with early man, was once at a bone-hunters’ camp out on the western plains of America, when a rancher tried to sell him a two-foot-long cave mummy. “Two hundred bucks,” demanded the rancher. Neither man knew what the blackened, leathery creature represented. No thanks, said Eiseley. Alright, replied the rancher; he would take his prize to the carnival. “There’s money in that little man,” he sniffed.
Indeed, the hobbit that Eiseley passed up may have been the rarest of prizes. “A small people, like eight-year-olds,” recall some of the Plains Indian Elders, once lived in the rocks near the Yellowstone. And as the Crow Indians recollect, Chief Red Plume, on a vision quest, won new mentors—“three small men and women.” These wee people, according to the Crow, “created many of the paintings and rock carvings [e.a.]… and had a strong role in our tribal taboos and religion.” It was at that “mysterious” monument, the Crow Medicine Wheel, that Red Plume had his vision and where “our forefathers claim the little people lived…it was a sacred place.”
Speaking of forefathers, when President Jefferson sent Lewis and Clark out west on their acclaimed Corps of Discovery, they camped one night at a hill near the Teton. The “hill” was actually a mound, man-made. The intrepid explorers there learned that the Dakota Indians called the place Mountain-of-the-Little-People or “Spirit Mound.”
Forty years later, when the Irish began migrating to America during the potato famines and beheld our “Indian mounds” scattered across the land, they were certain these formations were “the work of the little people,” the Daoine Shia. These poor Irish laborers had actually traced the origin of the American Moundbuilders more accurately than formidable intellects of the time, like Prof. Schoolcraft who denied the “lost-race” theory, insisting instead that the mounds had been built by the Red Indians.
Yet the Indians themselves had no idea who the first moundbuilders were, although legend held that they were spirit people who lived in the Long Ago.
The region in which I live, here at the foothills of the Smoky Mountains—old Cherokee country—is rich in Little People lore and artifacts. When the Cherokee first migrated into Tennessee and North Carolina, they came upon some white people, similar perhaps to the “albinos” ensconced in the Kentucky hills or the “Jackson Whites” of old New Jersey. Moreover, there were mounds there, built—say the Cherokee—by a race of “moon-eyed” people (like the “bulging” eyes of Flores man?)—much smaller than the Cherokee, with white skins and blue eyes. …And the I’hins covered…the earth over with… mounds of wood and earth… hundreds and thousands of cities and mounds built they.
In later times, the Cherokee held their most important and sacred councils upon the “Indian mound” in Nikwasi, today’s Franklin, North Carolina. The Little People who had built the Nikwasi mound were something like fairy folk and were called Nunnehi (The Immortals). There were also the Yunwi Tsusdi (“Little People”) who were friendly to the Cherokee but avoided being followed; for these handsome, long-haired folk kept their houses and towns secret.
The word was with the I’hin tribe, but locked up in secret.
But even the best-kept secrets of the Long Ago People were destined for the light of day, in this bright new Era of Rediscovery. And lo, Tennessee newspapers, in the 19th century, began reporting the discovery of burial grounds in Sparta, Smith, and White counties: “Very little people… deposited in tombs of stone…the bones were strong and well set, and the whole frames were well formed.” Fine engravings of figures were also found in several of these sacramental burials. The arms of the three-foot skeletons were folded, just like Eiseley’s bone-camp mummy.
Bewildered by the Tennessee evidence, writers began to speculate about the origins of these unaccountable “little men,” wondering if they were “beings from other worlds.” Indeed, Dr. Newbrough found that “the North American Indians still have a legend of the mound-builders, that they were people who came from another world…to teach them of the Great Spirit, and of the Summer Land in the sky.”
Historians, though, would not even consider that these strange burial specimens had anything to do with the “mysterious Moundbuilders.” But then, more discoveries were made of “diminutive sarcophagi” in West Virginia, Ohio and Kentucky. The city of Lexington, Kentucky, averred historian George W. Ranck, is built on the “metropolis of a lost race [who] flourished centuries before the Indian.” Was their remnant the “albinos” hiding in the Kentucky hills? And what about Mexico’s Temple of Dwarfs or Monte Alban (Mound of the Albinos??) with its acclaimed “pygmy” tunnels and inscriptions left—(as Edgar L. Larken, past director of Mt. Lowe Observatory, believed)—by the “survivors of Pan”?
Pan, an ancient name of the lost continent in the Pacific, is yet retained in JaPan, where Shinto priests are familiar with the old name “I’hin,” only they pronounce it Ine, as in wine, this referring to the white-skinned Ainu people of northern Japan.
And who is this “Lady Albine,” named in one legend as the founder of England, she who named it New Troy which later was changed to “London,” in honor of Lud, a royal Trojan. Archaeologists tend to attribute both Greek and Roman culture to the Trojans, through Aeneas. And when that hero’s great grandson settled Italy, he became king of the Alba (white) Longa.
Nor can we dismiss the world’s most arcane traditions, such as the Sanskrit Puranas which speak of the first continent—the Land of the Gods, Sveta-Dvipa, lit., White Continent, referring to its white-skinned inhabitants. Or— Aztec tradition which claims that “the first settlers in Mexico were a white race.” Or—Theosophy founder Madame Blavatsky’s revelations of the Third Race who were children of the Yellow Father and White Mother, followed by the Moon-colored people. As civilizers, these became the “blue bloods;” and we can only wonder if they got that sobriquet from their moon-colored, almost transparent skin which thus reveals blue veins.
Traces of this forgotten race can surely be found, by the interested student, among the Trojans, Hittites, Toltecs, Hopi, Guatemalan and Brazilian “White Indians,” Quetzals, Bushmen, and many more peoples both here and gone forever. Oral histories on the island of Flores, incidentally, hold that hobbit man, called ebu gogo, was still around in the 19th century, while Malay folklore describes a similar creature that “dwells on Sumatra to this day.” Unchanged.
Unevolved. If the evolutionary strait-jacket forces the improbable “dwarfing” theory on us, there is yet an alternative: amalgamations. Neanderthal and Noah, Boskop and Bushman, Dropa, ebu gogo, Ainu, Charles Darwin, Madame Blavatsky—we are all the product of racial mixing and interbreeding. And there is no evolution in it. And it is guaranteed not to shrink.
The author is currently book review editor at the journal of spirituality and paranormal studies; and is the author of The Psychic Life of Abraham Lincoln, to be released by New Page Books in the fall.