Beyond any shadow of doubt, of the many and varied architectural achievements of the Human Race, the pyramids of Egypt must surely top the list in terms of provoking deep awe and amazement. And a great deal of unbridled controversy and debate, too. Conventional Egyptology suggests that the pyramids were built during what are today termed the Old and Middle Kingdoms of Egypt. That’s to say from around the third millennium BC to roughly 1650 BC. The reason for their construction: Almost certainly to act as tombs for the pharaohs, so convention tells us. Convention also tells us the pyramids were built by sheer brute-force, man-power and technology of a very down to earth nature. But is that really the case?
One Abu al-Hasan Ali al-Mas’udi, otherwise known as the Herodotus of the Arabs, was a prolific 10th Century writer born in Baghdad in 896 AD who faithfully and carefully prepared an immense, 30-volume series of texts that told the history of the world, based upon his personal, extensive travels to lands far, wide, and exotic. To say that al-Mas’udi was a well journeyed fan of road-trips is a veritable understatement of the highest order. His impressive and dedicated treks took him to such varied parts of the globe as India, East Africa, Egypt, Syria, and Armenia.
He was also a skilled seaman who traversed the Mediterranean, the Caspian Sea, the Red Sea, and the Indian Ocean. And it was during his many excursions to such places that al-Mas’udi collected the equally many tales, stories and legends that made their way into that aforementioned and priceless multi-volume work. Its collective title, translated into English, was The Meadows of Gold and Mines of Gems. But, for all of the fascinating data that al-Mas’udi amassed during the course of his numerous wanderings, one piece stands out as being particularly illuminating.
Within the pages of his writings, which were completed in 947 AD – nine years before his death at the age of sixty - al-Mas’udi noted that in very early Arabic legends there existed an intriguing story suggesting that the creation of the pyramids of Egypt had absolutely nothing to do with the conventional technologies of the era. Rather, al-Mas’udi recorded, tantalizing, centuries-old lore that had come his way during his explorations strongly suggested the pyramids were created by what, today, we would most likely refer to as some form of levitation.
The incredible story that al-Mas’udi uncovered went just like this: When building the pyramids, their creators carefully positioned what was described as magical papyrus underneath the edges of the mighty stones that were to be used in the construction process. Then, one by one, the stones were struck by what was curiously, and rather enigmatically, described only as a rod of metal. Lo and behold, the stones then slowly began to rise into the air, and – like dutiful soldiers unquestioningly following orders – proceeded in slow, methodical, single-file fashion a number of feet above a paved pathway surrounded on both sides by similar, mysterious metal rods.
For around 150 feet, Al-Mas’udi noted, the gigantic stones moved forward, usually with nothing more than the very gentlest of prods - from the keeper of the mysterious rod - to ensure they stayed on-track, before finally, and very softly, settling back to the ground.
At that point, the process was duly repeated. The stones were struck once more, rose up from the surface, and again traveled in the desired direction, for yet another 150 feet or so. And so the strange, repetitive task continued, time and time again, until all of the stones finally reached their ultimate destination. Then, in a distinctly far more complex feat, the stones were struck a further time, but this time in a fashion that caused them to float even higher into the air. Then, when they reached the desired point, they were carefully – and with incredible ease - manipulated into place, one-by-one, by hand and nothing else, until the huge pyramid in question was finally completed.
Such a scenario sounds manifestly astonishing. Certainly, many might laugh at such amazing assertions. Others might dismiss the whole thing as the ravings of a madman, or the stuff of nothing more than distorted legend and fanciful folklore. But, just perhaps, the old tale tells nothing less than a fantastic truth about amazing, now long lost technologies of the ancients...