A Shockingly Blunt Admission from Theosophy That Hyper-Diffusionism and Atlantis Theories Are Racist
Most of the world paused yesterday for the inauguration of Donald Trump as the first post-fact president. In coverage of his grim inaugural address, many pundits focused on the portrait of what Trump called “American carnage,” in which he described “rusted-out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation,” among other horrors. The pundits, ranging from George F. Will to Stephen Colbert, in their quite justified shock that Trump would paint such a doom-laden picture, took issue with the idea of a run-down, decaying America. But that is the privilege of people who live in expensive gated communities and tony condo towers. I couldn’t help but think of the long series of decaying post-industrial towns that dot upstate New York, where I live, peeling paint and untamed lawns scattered around the giant hulks of old factories, most shut up and falling down. A former factory burns down or collapses quite regularly around here. It may not be visible in Washington, or New York City, or most of the newly built postindustrial cities of the South and West, but where there once was industry but no longer, it can look a bit like a wasteland.
The problem is that the population is shrinking in the North, and the economy has shifted without anyone putting the money into keeping up or adapting the old infrastructure that supported a vanished lifestyle. Even if everyone had good jobs, I can’t help but think that the aesthetics of living amidst the ruins of massive, empty buildings would invariably create a sense of decline and decay. It reminds me a bit of the medieval people who squatted amidst the ruins of Roman temples and baths and cursed their small and cramped constructions as inferior until they finally learned to build Romanesque and Gothic cathedrals.
Trump’s claim, though, rang alarmist because such decay isn’t universal, but rather is confined to certain parts of the country that the shift in population and economics left behind. It also isn’t new. The old factories of the Northeast have been in decline for decades. One in my hometown burned down and collapsed in the 1990s after a long abandonment. A couple right in the middle of Albany have been abandoned for decades.
But so much for doom and gloom.
Today I thought I would share a strange article found in the September 25, 1910 edition of the Theosophical magazine The Century Path, which sought to investigate the tiresome old racist myth of “white” Indians. The writer reported that a Fellow of the Royal Geographic Society published an article in the St. Louis Star (but did not provide a date) in which he proposed that the legends of “white” Indians were actually either Norsemen or Irishmen, but could possibly have been Atlanteans. The Theosophical writer then provides part of the text of the article:
Students of American legend will remember Quetzalcoatl, the deified white man of ancient Mexico, and the periodical visits of bearded white men from the East to the ancient Incan Empire. The white savage is however beardless. The ancient pre-Incan Peruvians are held by Short, in his North Americans of Antiquity, to have been an auburn-haired race, while this same hair and blue eyes were not uncommon among the Indians of Dakota and other tribes.
Isn’t that charming? It manages to be racist and cockamamie in only a few paragraphs.
Our writer insults Native people by suggesting that they were not “intelligent” enough to have constructed the ruins of Andean cultures, and then insults them again by attributing the works to white men suffering from “degeneracy”! But already in this early article we see the fascination with skeletons of “giants,” which somehow are supposed to be simultaneous Atlantean and Caucasian and gigantic. This is the exact claim we see among Nephilim theorists, desperately hoping to find Bible giants with European DNA in the Americans, even though these giants were supposedly evil. Brien Foerster and this Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society would have much to talk about, and L. A. Marzulli would probably kill to have such scientific credibility when making the same claims.
But our Theosophical author isn’t content with what the British scientist had to say. He adds what is probably the most honest, but most horrific and blunt statement of the racism of fringe history. He states that the Aryan race overran Atlantis with their superior whiteness. “Thousands of years later the remnants of the evil or colored Atlanteans began to invade these new settlements, but were defeated and fled to remote parts where their descendants are now found. To the Atlanto-Aryan race are to be ascribed the masonry of Peru and the Pelasgian architecture of Europe.” Yes, you heard right: The “Aryans” (i.e. white people) did all the good stuff, while the brown peoples that happen to live in and around large old stone buildings are simply the degenerate descendants of “evil” people.
You can’t say that they tried to hide their hatred of the non-white.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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