The Popular Imagination

Is the media starting to get it? By ‘it,’ we mean an appreciation for the ideas on which this magazine likes to dwell but which are usually ignored or derided by the so-called mainstream press.

It could be argued that recent offerings from Hollywood show signs of an awakening of some sort. National Treasure, the movie (discussed in this issue’s cover story), for instance, has—while presented as nothing but fictional entertainment—introduced the public to some of the hidden, albeit factual, by-ways of American history frequently discussed in this publication. White Noise from Universal Pictures (featured in our last issue) was based on actual research into instrumental transcommunication, previously the subject of several articles in these pages, yet seldom discussed anywhere else.

The forthcoming film of Dan Brown’s best-selling novel, The Da Vinci Code promises to bring worldwide attention, if not credibility, to some of the more obscure controversies surrounding the origins of Christianity—the stuff of numerous articles in Atlantis Rising well before the orthodox press had noticed. In fact, the ten years of our existence have seen a mushrooming growth of popular interest in our chosen fields—ancient mysteries, unexplained anomalies, future science and the like.

Feature films, moreover, are not the only venue in which the growth of media interest in our domain is evident. Recently, the major television networks have offered up more or less serious coverage of such previously taboo topics as reincarnation, Tesla technology, cold fusion’s resurrection, and more. While the appearance of almost friendly coverage in the established media may not indicate a Damascus Road-style epiphany, it does show that somebody has figured out that there is a large audience for this material, and that their old policy of ignoring it is no longer in their best interest.

As Steven Sora points out in our current cover story, National Treasure has been a huge hit despite its near unanimous rejection by critics. Yet, notwithstanding the movie’s over-the-top exercise of dramatic license and its obviously shallow treatment of the subject matter, the net result, it seems to us, can only be an increased awareness that standard versions of our national history may have left out some crucial details.

When Raiders of the Lost Art swamped the box offices of the early ’80s, most saw it as sheer entertainment and nothing more, but we have little doubt that the ensuing explosion of interest in such topics as the true fate of the Ark of the Covenant and the occult dimensions of the Third Reich was an unintended by-product.

We at Atlantis Rising, of course, believe that these and other such developments are best seen as straws in the wind indicating some deeper changes in public consciousness. At such times, it is tempting to extrapolate a future in which a more friendly environment for our more cherished concepts could lead to long-awaited breakthroughs—like, say, uncovering the secrets of our origins.

Today, it seems that some of the entrenched opposition to even discussing these topics may be breaking down. It is worth remembering, however, that the forces of the status quo have aborted many favorable trends in the past. So, for now, we will continue to keep our powder dry and wait a bit before declaring victory.

By J. Douglas Kenyon