Tag Archives: Out of the Aeons

H.P. Lovecraft and Atlantis, Part 2

tdbgzhoafpyztufm4nv3 Sunken Atlantis by Paul Alexander

I would like to start this article with a correction to the first article on H.P. Lovecraft’s thoughts on the legend of Atlantis. In the first article, I stated that Lovecraft cited both Ignatius Donnelly’s account of Atlantis (Atlantis: The Antediluvian World, 1882) as well as W. Scott-Elliot’s Atlantis and the Lost Lemuria (1925) in “The Temple.” This is incorrect. Lovecraft mentioned Donnelly’s book in “The Descendent” and Scott-Elliot’s book was mentioned in “The Call of Cthulhu.” While neither book was cited in “The Temple,” Joshi refers to both of them in his explanatory notes for “The Temple” in the Penguin Classics edition of The Thing on the Doorstep and Other Weird Stories (2001). I apologize for the error.

In “The Call of Cthulhu” Professor George Gammell Angell, Professor Emeritus of Semitic Languages from Brown University was compiling information on the Cthulhu Cult and among the manuscript papers were some citations from W. Scott-Elliot’s Atlantis and the Lost Lemuria. As mentioned in Leslie S. Klinger’s The Annotated H.P. Lovecraft (2014) Lovecraft had a 1925 combined edition of these books. The Story of Atlantis was first published in 1896, while The Lost Lemuria was first published in 1904.

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It is interesting to note that Atlantis was supposed to represent a high point of human (or related species) civilization. While the destruction of Atlantis is frequently associated with the Atlanteans meddling with science and / or the power the gods, there are a variety of hypotheses attempting to link some real-life catastrophe to the legend of Atlantis. For example, the land of Thera, now known as the Greek island of Santorini, was partly destroyed by a volcanic eruption about 3,600 years ago. The destruction of Thera is thought to be basis for the idea of Atlantis (http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20160118-the-atlantis-style-myths-of-sunken-lands-that-are-really-true). However, is the extremely unlikely the Atlantis will actually be directly linked to a real location on Earth.

There have been attempts to link Cthulhu’s sunken City of R’lyeh to Atlantis but as Jason Colavito has stated:

“The imagined “fall” of Cthulhu, however, bears only a superficial resemblance to Atlantis, and even that was intentional. Lovecraft tried to create a (fictional) analogue to Plato’s Atlantis narrative as an answer to the Theosophists and their silly claims about Venusians running occult schools on Lemuria. Plato’s Atlantis sinks because of the Atlanteans’ sins… Cthulhu and R’lyeh sink beneath the waves—just because. Geology happens. There is no moral good or evil implied. It just happened.” – from http://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/was-cthulhu-a-king-of-atlantis.  While in “The Strange High House in the Mist” Lovecraft mentions “…how the kings of Atlantis fought with the slippery blasphemies that wriggled out of rift’s in ocean’s floor…” there is no evidence to indicate that these blasphemies were the spawn of Cthulhu.

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R’lyeh Rising by Welsh Pixie (www.deviantart.com)

Coavito’s statement agrees with Joshi’s statement that Lovecraft saw Atlantis as a myth and liked to incorporate it into his tales.  Additionally, and more to the point, Atlantis was supposed to sink somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean, while R’lyeh is located somewhere deep in the Pacific Ocean. Thus, even if there was some sort of correlation between R’lyeh and some mythic sunken land it would have a slightly better chance of it being Lemuria.

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In a few of Lovecraft’s revision tales such as “The Last Test” co-written with Adolphe de Castro and “Medusa’s Coil” co-written with Zealia Bishop there are several references to individuals being descended from the primal race of lost Atlantis and how the Atlantean civilization delved into evil and forbidden knowledge. For example, in “The Last Test” Atlantis was apparently a “hotbed” of evil cult activity and it is hoped that “…no one will ever drag up that horror from the deep.” This may be a possible reference to the Atlantean’s attempting to contact the Old Ones from outside of our Universe. There is a reference to this in “Medusa’s Coil” where “…the frightful secret that has come down from the days of Cthulhu and the Elder Ones – the secret that was nearly wiped out when Atlantis sank…”

medusa_s_coil_by_mrsfish-da4hgua Medusa’s Coil by Mrs. Fish (www.deviantart.com)

In the tale “The Mound” written by Lovecraft and Zealia Bishop, the underground civilization discovered by the Spaniard Zamacona was said to occasionally receive visitors from the upper world. According to the individuals who Zamacona met, the last time they encountered someone from the outer world was when “…refugees straggled back from Atlantis and Lemuria aeons before.” If these refugees straggled back from these sunken kingdoms, is it possible that the Atlanteans and Lemurians were of the same decent as those who live under the mound? If this is the case, the various technologies that the mound civilization possess (e.g. dematerialization and dream-projection) may has also been possessed by Atlanteans.

In Lovecraft’s novel At the Mountains of Madness the Elder Thing’s Antarctic Palaeogaean megalopolis was compared to both Atlantis and Lemuria, as well as other ancient civilizations. Additionally, in Out of the Aeons, co-written with Hazel Heald, Lovecraft mentions that cults of the Old One Ghatanothoa were established in Atlantis. Finally, as previously mentioned, the Shining Trapezohedron sunk with Atlantis, only later to be found by a Minoan fisherman in his nets.

64-ghatanothoa                               Ghatanothoa by Michael Bukowski (www.yog-blogsoth.blogspot.com)

In conclusion, it is extremely unlikely the Cthulhu’s R’lyeh and Atlantis were the same place, simply based on the fact that one is located in the Pacific Ocean and the other in the Atlantic Ocean.  Additionally, there is no evidence to support that R’lyeh was Lemuria. However, the people of Atlantis may have been related to the people who live under the Earth as documented in “The Mound.” Also, the Atlanteans may have been attempting to contact the Old Ones or harness their powers in the manipulation of matter, energy, time and space. These attempts of communication (e.g. the Shining Trapezohedron) may have failed miserably and resulted in the downfall of the civilization and the destruction of their Island paradise.

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Next time we will discuss how the concept of what a galaxy is changed over the course of Lovecraft’s lifetime. Thank you – Fred.

More on the Nature of Cthulhu and its Spawn

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Cthulhu by Calavera (www.deviantart.com)

This short article will briefly discuss the expanded relationship between Cthulhu and Ghatanothoa and a little more on the origins of Cthulhu and its Spawn. Similar to Cthulhu, Ghatanothoa is trapped in a sunken island at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. While the legend of Ghatanothoa in von Junzt’s Black Book and the associated events in the Cabot Museum of Archaeology in Boston as outlined in “Out of the Aeons” are very similar to those documented in “The Call of Cthulhu,” there is no direct mention or identified connection between Ghatanothoa and Cthulhu in either tale. However, later text identified by Lin Carter has cited in a number of instances that Ghatanothoa is one of the three “sons” of Cthulhu, the other two being Ythogtha and Zoth-Ommgg.

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Ythogtha (by Grumble Putty)

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Zoth Ommgg (by Zach Geller)

In Lovecraft’s original “family tree of the Old Ones” the only cited offspring of Cthulhu is Shaurash-ho and based on the lineage, this offspring was created through asexual reproduction. However, according to Carter’s research into the Ponape Scriptures there was a sexual union, genetic or otherwise, between Cthulhu and an entity named Idh-Yaa. This sexual union occurred on, in or around Xoth, a green star located in the constellation of Taurus. In fact Cthulhu and its Spawn are said to have originated from Xoth. Again, this information is provided in the Ponape Scriptures as cited by Carter and not in the Black Book, which was cited by Lovecraft.

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 Idh-Yaa (from http://www.lovecraft.wiki.com)

It is particularly interesting that the binary star system of Xoth is described as a green star since humans have never documented a truly green star. Any star that appears to be green is a result of an optical illusion.  For example, the multiple star system of the Antares has a particularly bright red star that makes some of other stars look green. While a truly green star is not impossible it is highly improbable in our universe. Thus, this provides evidence that Cthulhu and related entities are not residents of our space-time.  While Xoth may be in the Taurus constellation, this section of space-time may be an access point to another multiverse.

Another interesting point is that as mentioned in a previous article Cthulhu and its Spawn are composed of matter different than  what is found in our space-time and I hypothesize their matter may be somewhat plasma based (composed of ionized gas). While rare on Earth, plasma is the most common form of matter in our space-time with most of it found within stars. Thus, it may be that Cthulhu and its related spawn enter our space-time through the stars themselves and to remain in some stable, yet plastic, form draw energy from stars. However, as I previously mentioned, if Cthulhu and its Spawn are plasma-based and can exist in stars then they must be millions of degrees in temperature.  For example, the core of our sun can reach more than 27 million degrees Fahrenheit, which is 15 million degree Celsius, (www.space.com). Thus, how can Cthulhu and its Spawn exist on or in Earth, or at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean, without burning it up? More on that in a future article.

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Rays of Xoth by Astra888leddher (www.deviantart.com)

In addition to providing more information on the plasma-based nature of Cthulhu, next time I will also present evidence that many of the entities cited as being associated or related to Cthulhu, such Idh-Yaa and their associated offspring, are in fact members of the Spawn of Cthulhu.  However, this next article may not be posted until sometime toward the end of the month.

Next week I will be attending the NecronomiCon in Providence Rhode Island. I will be giving a talk on the “Lovecraftian Cosmos.” In addition I will be on a panel discussing Lovecraft and Science. If you are attending, I would love to meet you. If you cannot attend I place on posting short articles and photos while at the convention on both this WordPress page and the Facebook page “Lovecraftian Science.” Thank you – Fred.

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The “Nature” of Ghatanothoa and Similarities with Cthulhu

Beyond the ability to petrify people but leaving their brains alive within their paralyzed bodies (which I hypothesize is due to a biologically produced air-borne toxin) very little is known about the biology of Ghatanothoa. One of the reasons for this is the fact that getting too close to the entity results in paralysis. Whether it’s due to merely observed Ghatanothoa or a result of an air-borne toxin it generates, getting actual information on this entity is extremely difficult and hazardous. However, H.P. Lovecraft and Hazel Heald do provide some small scrapes of information on this lesser known Old One.

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Ghatanothoa by Jagoba Lekuona Huegun

Specifically, the most recent description of Ghatanothoa is “…gigantic – tentacled – proboscidian – octopus-eyed – semi-amorphous – plastic – partly squamous and partly rugose – ugh!” Other descriptors include loathsome, non-human and extra-galactic. Even in von Junzt’s Black Book very little information is provided on Ghatanothoa.  We do know the Spawn of Yuggoth deposited Ghatanothoa on ancient Earth deep in the caverns of a fortress on the mountain Yaddith-Go. Here it is said that Ghatanothoa would brood eternally and wallowed, waddled and burrowed deep in the Earth.

Based on the ancient text, Ghatanothoa must have wreaked havoc on Yuggoth since the Spawn imprisoned it on Earth. While Ghatanothoa was placed on Earth, the Spawn did not intentionally want to use this entity as a means of cleansing the planet of humans. Thus, the thing was imprisoned and a select portion of humanity, who ended up being the priests of Ghatanothoa were provided with a means of keeping it imprisoned.

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So what is Ghatanothoa? Based on some interpretations made Kenneth Hite, Chris Lackey and Chad Fifer on the H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast, “Out of the Aeons” can be thought of as a re-interpretation of “The Call of Cthulhu.”  I agree with this and I hypothesize that Ghatanothoa and Cthulhu are similar entities. While Tsathoggua and Shub-Niggurath are mentioned in “Out of Aeons” and Cthulhu is not, the description of Ghatanothoa is somewhat similar to that of Cthulhu. Compare the description of Ghatanothoa described above to those of Cthulhu such as “lumbered slobberingly,” “gelatinous green immensity,” and “eldritch contradictions of all matter, force and cosmic order.”

The morphology of both of these entities is “in-flux” in our universe. That is, they can change size and shape at will, which makes observing them very disorienting, even dangerous for your mind and body.  For example, Ghatanothoa is described as plastic, while Cthulhu is described as gelatinous. It is clear based on Lovecraft’s writings that Cthulhu, and more than likely Ghatanothoa, are not made of matter from our space-time and originate from outside of our universe. Their “matter” appears to be a combination of gaseous, solid and liquid material and in fact maybe composed of plasma.

cthulhu_by_fiend_upon_my_back-d3g23o6

Cthulhu by Fiend Upon My Back (www.deviantart.com)

Plasma is a state of matter where both electrons and protons are freely moving and no longer bound in the formal atomic state that we are familiar with. While extremely rare in on Earth, plasma is the most common state of matter in the universe (Kaku; Hyperspace, 1994). A sentient, ionized gas with a very fluid-like state could explain the strange inconsistency and movement of Cthulhu and Ghatanothoa. However, in our universe plasma is typically found in stars, where the temperatures are so high that electrons and protons are freely moving. Thus, if these are plasma-based entities, wouldn’t they be thousands of degrees hot and immediately burn anything near them? Does this mean Cthulhu and Ghatanothoa can only exist in our universe within a star?  Also, there is so much energy in intensely hot plasma, that the very geometry of space-time will distort and the dimensionality of space-time could actually change (Kaku, 1994). Are Cthulhu and Ghatanothoa possibly channeling their intense heat and energy into another dimension to keep their relatively plasma-like properties while existing in our space-time and without burning it up?

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Ghatanothoa by Jack Rezz (www.deviantart.com)

Next time I will attempt to explain these strange properties of Cthulhu and Ghatanothoa by discussing their possible origins. Also, I just wanted to let everyone know that Steve Maschuck and I will be attending the NecronomiCon later this month in Providence Rhode Island. I will be giving a presentation on “The Lovecraftian Cosmos” and I will be on a panel about Lovecraft and Science. If you are attending, I would love to meet and chat! Also, I will try to post some material on the WordPress page during the convention. Thank you – Fred.

Additional Evidence Supporting the Ghatanothoa Air-Borne Toxin Hypothesis

ghatanothoa_by_passer_in_the_storm-d4q0zu4

Ghatanothoa by Passer in the Storm (www.deviantart.com)

There are a number of substances that are colorless and odorless but can harm or even kill humans. High concentrations of carbon dioxide or carbon monoxide can easily kill a person. Another example is radon or other more energetic forms of ionizing radiation such as X-rays or gamma rays. Without the use of a Geiger counter a person can be easily killed by such forms of radiation and not even know what is killing them. I hypothesize that the same holds for an air-borne substance emitted by Ghatanothoa; a colorless, odorless substance is emitted from this entity and is the cause for both the paralysis of the exposed individual as well as for the long-term preservation of the brain, allowing the individual mind to survive and live on as the paralyzed body slowly rots away. Thus, my hypothesis is that it is not the mere sight of Ghatanothoa that causes the paralysis but an air-borne toxin generated by the entity. This article provides evidence for supporting this hypothesis.

According to an ancient legend found in von Junzt’s Black Book or Nameless Cults, the sorcerer T’yog was going to banish or defeat Ghatanothoa and had a scroll of protective runes that would make him immune to the paralyzing effect of gazing upon Ghatanothoa. Priests of Ghatanothoa replaced T’yog’s scroll with a fake so it was concluded that this is why T’yog failed at his task – he used the wrong scroll and Ghatanothoa paralyzed his flesh, leaving his mind alive and intact, to be forever cognizant but unable to move or communicate with the outside world.

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Ghatanothoa by Roberts the Vile (www.deviantart.com)

In the tale, it was noted that over time, “Through some chemical or physical influence in the air, the half stony, half leathery fibers seemed to be gradually relaxing…” This resulted in some changes in the position of the mummy and eventually led to the eyes opening; however, I hypothesize that extended exposure to open air had somehow caused a softening of the tissues and an initiation of decay, resulting in a release of the inactive toxin in small amounts. This slow release of the toxin as the mummy decays would explain the deaths of the two cultists who originated from the Pacific Rim, who attempted to replace the scroll with one they possessed. The cultist furthest away from the mummy may have received enough of a dosage to kill him but not to petrify his skin and tissues and preserve his brain. Thus, while he may have appeared to have “died of fright” it may in fact have been a lower dosage of the unknown, air-borne toxin. In contrast, the cultist closest to the mummy probably received a full dosage, which resulted in the paralysis of the body and the preservation of the brain.

After the investigators found the dead cultists and were examining them, they noted that the dead-fish eyes of the mummy were staring at them and even before they closely examined the mummy they “…felt a curious rigidity creeping over us and hampering our simplest motions…” A closer inspection of the mummy resulted in one of the investigators fainting. He claimed to have seen something in the eyes of the mummy, possibly an image of Ghatanothoa but further inspections revealed nothing (more on that in a future article). I hypothesis that once the paralysis of the mummy wore off and it began to decompose, some of the air-borne toxin that was trapped in the paralyzed tissues were released, causing the deaths of the cultists and the documented effects of rigidity.  After the air-borne toxin dissipated, it was no longer a threat. The image of Ghatanothoa may have been a temporary hallucination, a side-effect of the toxin.  This is one of the reasons I hypothesize it’s an air-borne toxin and not some form of ionizing radiation or exotic cosmic ray; it’s impact was only directly felt when the paralyzed tissues started to decay and then dissipated over a fairly short period of time.

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Ghatanothoa by Hvergi (www.deviantart.com)

So if the body paralyzing / brain preserving power of Ghatanothoa originate from an air-borne toxin and not by merely looking at the entity, would T’yog have been saved by using the correct scroll? Probably not. Any advanced science looks like magic to a more primitive society and the spells on scrolls may have seemed an appropriate way of defending one’s self against Ghatanothoa. Indeed, there may actually be a “science” to the use of spells in repelling the Old Ones that we may not understand but my guess is it would not have worked in the mechanical, materialistic Lovecraftian universe. The spells were part of a religion that developed around an Old One opposing Ghatanothoa – Shub-Niggurath. In a Lovecraftian universe the cosmic irony or jest would be that the religious defense against an Old One would have no power at all.

Next time we will briefly discuss what is known about the biology of Ghatanothoa.  Thank you – Fred.

Notes From Yuggoth (based on the New Horizons Voyage)

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Latest image of Pluto, 9th of July 2015

Over the next few weeks I will be dropping little bit of information about Pluto (although we all know its true name is Yuggoth).

“Among the structures tentatively identified in this new image are what appear to be polygonal features; a complex band of terrain stretching east-northeast across the planet, approximately 1,000 miles long …” said New Horizons principal investigator Alan Stern. “After nine and a half years in flight, Pluto is well worth the wait.”

This is the latest from NASA, a photo taken by New Horizons on July 9, 2015 approximately from 3.3 million miles (5.4 million kilometers) away from the dwarf planet, with a resolution of 17 miles (27 kilometers) per pixel.

In “Out of the Aeons” by H.P. Lovecraft and Hazel Heald, there was an ancient land or province on Earth called K’naa where the first people found monstrous ruins left by those who dwelt there long ago.  The ruins were the bleak basalt cliffs of Mount Yaddith-Gho and one top of those cliffs was “a gigantic fortress of Cyclopean stone, infinitely older than mankind and built by the alien spawn of the dark planet Yuggoth, which had colonised the earth before the birth of terrestrial life.”  Is this 1,000 polygonal feature one of the fortresses of the Mi-Go?  We shall see!

mh-07-10-15_puto_image_annotatedMi-Go buildings?  We shall see!