Geologist Robert Schoch Claims to Be Able to "Translate" Alleged "Writing" at Göbekli Tepe
So, my hard drive failed for the second time in three months. My computer is still functional, to a point, so I can use it intermittently while I wait for HP to send me a box to ship it back for more repairs, including the fault sound, flickering screen, etc. They informed me that the hard drive has to die three times before they will admit that this computer is a lemon and replace it. So, stay tuned for hard drive failure number three later this spring.
This week, geologist Robert Schoch appeared on the Lost Origins podcast, which was sponsored by “The Great Courses Plus,” a subscription service providing video lectures from college professors. Just think about that for a moment. A zany fringe history podcast gets cash from The Great Courses to promote the opposite of their own claims. Money makes strange bedfellows.
The podcast itself was much less interesting. Schoch is a boring speaker, and he tends to speak like a stereotype of a college professor. He never varies his tone, and his words start to become a wall of undifferentiated sound. It’s hard for me to listen to him talk for too long because my mind starts to wander.
Schoch repeated most of his usual claims, particularly his 1992 argument that the Sphinx had been carved prior to dynastic Egypt, a nineteenth century idea that Schoch adopted from R. A. Schwaller de Lubicz via John Anthony West. Schwaller de Lubicz got it from Gaston Maspero, who adopted it from Auguste Mariette, who came up with it because he mistook a Ptolemaic stela for an Old Kingdom one and therefore mistook a myth on the Inventory Stela for a historical account. This time, however, Schoch claims that he realized the Victorians and occultists were right “within 1 or 2 minutes” of arriving at Giza. Truth be told, that doesn’t fill me with confidence.
Another section of the podcast led to Schoch concluding that there is no evidence of the so-called Younger Dryas impact event which is so popular among Graham Hancock and his followers. It’s interesting to see a rift between the two advocates of pseudo-Atlantis, I guess. He reiterates his claim that ancient people recorded “plasma” events from the sun, which caused the end of the Ice Age.
Schoch describes the end of the last Ice Age in geological detail, but he never quite makes the case that the dramatic changes at the end of the period destroyed a lost civilization. Even if we accept his claims about solar plasma, it implies nothing about the existence of an advanced, state-level civilization for it to destroy.
He then discusses his excitement about viewing the Turkish site of Göbekli Tepe at sunrise, and he talks about the emotional reaction he has to ancient sites, which therefore colors his belief that they must be something more closely associated with an urban civilization similar to our own. Feelings… beliefs… blah, blah, blah.
More depressing is Schoch’s new claim that Göbekli Tepe was the site of a literate civilizations some 8,000 years before the first systems of writing. Remarkably, he also claims to be able to translate the “writing” he sees on the stones of the site. He claims that one stone reads “God of gods,” and I’d say it’s a darn site remarkable that he can translate a heretofore unsuspected system of writing in a 10,000-year-old language no one alive has ever heard. After all, several writing systems from historic times, such as linear A, related to languages that were only spoken a few thousand years ago, remain largely unreadable. We can’t even read Etruscan fluently, and yet Schoch has supposedly learned to read an Ice Age language! Think about that. For example, Old English is largely unintelligible to modern English speakers, while the Ice Age is removed in time from us by a factor of twenty times that chronological distance. The unlikeliness of Schoch’s claim boggles the mind.
Nevertheless, Schoch apparently published a paper about the claim a couple of months ago, and it is as weird as you would imagine. He claims that Göbekli Tepe contains Luwian (!) hieroglyphs, from the Anatolian culture that we have encountered on this blog as part of a fringe extremist view of the Trojan War and its supposed Luwian connection to Atlantis. (Naturally, Schoch cites the work of the Atlantis theorist behind the Luwian claims.) Luwian writing dates to around 1500 BCE, but Schoch makes only a shallow effort to bridge the gap between the oldest hypothesized Luwian predecessor script c. 2000 BCE and the heyday of Göbekli Tepe eight millennia earlier. His hypothesis is that the Luwians adopted Göbekli Tepe symbols as part of their writing system due to their preservation in Anatolian oral traditions (the stone versions being buried) and therefore the meaning remained unchanged for 8,000 years. Given that our own alphabet looks nothing like its predecessors from just a few thousand years ago and that the adoption of Egyptian hieroglyphs by their successors preserved almost nothing of the original meaning after only a few centuries, I find this claim to be impossibly unlikely. (Cf. for example, the decline of hieroglyphic knowledge from ancient Egypt to Horapollo to Abenephius to Ibn Wahshiyya.) Schoch admits in his article that the Luwian symbols are not identical to those of Göbekli Tepe, only somewhat similar. I think he is seeing what he wants to see and reading what he wants to read.
Schoch is not a linguist or an expert in Luwian. His coauthor, Manu Seyfzadeh, is also not a linguist but is a pyramid enthusiast who claims that The Orion Mystery helped him discover occult secrets in the Great Pyramid.
Anyway, the hosts ask Schoch about the so-called “handbags” held in the hands of statues and carvings of ancient gods, demigods, and demons. Schoch claims that they are “arcing” solar emissions. Uh-huh. Why, then, did the ancients fail to depict the, you know, sun in such carvings? Well, Schoch clarifies that he isn’t actually talking about handbags around the world, just a single symbol at Göbekli Tepe. So, consequently, this part of the conversation was a waste of time.
The podcast then ends without any actual evidence being presented for any of the claims. The end.
1/11/2020 08:54:02 am
Robert would get a 'Schoch' if he could see my toilet leavings earlier, I tell ya!
1/11/2020 09:30:48 am
Well, he did go from writing textbooks on vertebrate paleontology, if I recall, to making a rather precise dating of a human fabricated rock structure that is off by about 7000ish thousand years. So it makes perfect sense that he decides one day that he can read what is carved at GT.
1/11/2020 09:55:59 am
I left a few fudge Cumberland sausages on Easter Island too.
1/11/2020 10:24:57 am
The BBC claimed they asked an independent geologist on a documentary about The Orion Mystery to analyse the Sphinx, only showing part of it - without revealing it was the Sphinx. The geologist was Robert Schoch, who came up with his conclusions. I presume he afterwards used R. A. Schwaller de Lubicz et al as "verification" for his conclusions about the Sphinx.
1/11/2020 01:00:49 pm
It was John Anthony West that did that, the geologist was from Oxford. West at the time was looking for support from a geologist that was attached to a university in order to give his theory credibility before making it public.
I have got a copy of the video
1/11/2020 01:16:51 pm
West was featured on the BBC documentary, but only as an example of a believer working as a tourist guide catering for other believers. West was not a professional geologist.
1/11/2020 02:31:51 pm
Yes, exactly right. That's what I said. West was not an academic, which was why he needed a professional geologist to sign off on his theory before taking it public.
1/11/2020 03:30:53 pm
Gilbert and Bauval didn't write anything about the Sphinx in The Orion Mystery as it was not their theory. I don't recall them using a geologist in their research since their focus was on archaeo astronomy, how the star shafts lined up with important stars via procession and the sky ground dualism they theorized that the Egyptians utilized in their groundplan, and the religion behind it.I don't recall a geologist involved but even if there had been one it wasn't Schoch.
1/11/2020 04:09:21 pm
You're right Tony S - I got the documentary wrong. The BBC made two related documentaries - one about the Sphinx and one about The Orion Mystery (that the BBC had to backpedal on later). I take it that you know about stuff between Schoch and West not reported about on the documentary about the Sphinx.
1/11/2020 04:57:18 pm
There was nothing in the documentary about the Sphinx to suggest that Schoch and West knew each other
Schoch - Second correction
1/11/2020 05:37:25 pm
You're right again Tony S - just watched the documentary again and West says on the documentary that it was him and not the BBC who approached Schoch about the dating of the Sphinx.
1/12/2020 02:49:40 am
The other documentary was called The Great Pyramid - Gateway to the Stars (produced by John Blake & Chris Mann, BBC 2, 6 February 1994)
The Great Pyramid - Gateway to the Stars
1/12/2020 08:38:51 am
Timewatch: Age of The Sphinx
1/13/2020 10:14:24 am
That Timewatch documentary is a re-edited version of "The Mystery of the Sphinx" that was hosted on US Television by Charlton Heston (2013). That's on YouTube.
BBC Adjudication re Bauval & Hancock
1/13/2020 01:40:03 pm
1/11/2020 10:44:33 am
First The History Channel and Discovery Channel fell to fringe ideas, now The Great Courses. What a pity. I don't subscribe to Great Courses, but I've listened to free content on YouTube. Subscribers should complain, and so should their other lecturers.
1/11/2020 11:09:51 am
Witness all the fundamentalist religious stuff on YouTube that is pure historical fiction. People should complain about that because there is no historical or archaeological evidence to substantiate any stories in the Bible.
1/11/2020 12:10:47 pm
Okay I am officially complaining about any and all YouTube videos that make the claim that the bible is well substantiated thru historical records and archaeology. Ok? Perfect, now we can get back to the topic at hand.
1/11/2020 12:35:46 pm
Fringe ideas, YouTube is a platform anyone can use for any content, within reason. I have no problem if religious people want to make a video to disseminate among other religious people. Just don't watch it.
1/11/2020 01:31:59 pm
Officially, people have got the right to believe in rubbish. That right originated with Freemasonry to withdraw the monopoly on belief that was held by religious belief in the Bible. It was part of the history of the Enlightenment. That's why various Freemasonic rites are decorated with modern myths about the Bible to do with Hiram Abiff and later involved myths about the Templars, within its own private rituals.
1/11/2020 01:55:07 pm
I should have added there are two types of scepticism - Rational Scepticism (non-religious) and non Rational Scepticism - whereby Non-Rational Scepticism is Biblical Apologetic and an extension of religious fundamentalism, that appears totally contradictory in nature.
1/11/2020 02:29:20 pm
1/11/2020 03:52:32 pm
I guess authentic Freemasonry devised their Templar myths within their rituals because Templars were proscribed as heretics. Nothing to do with anything related to Scott Wolter, whose theories and claims derive from modern myths that began with Holy Blood, Holy Grail.
1/11/2020 04:16:29 pm
If the Great Course Channel had been around in the early 20th century they shouldn't have let the plate tectonics guy on? That seems to be the argument.
1/11/2020 04:28:36 pm
Now if someone gave a lecture on Great Courses Plus, applying the science of plate tectonics to the continental drift of loose brain material inside Kent’s skull, then I’d definitely pay to watch it!
1/11/2020 12:33:05 pm
Schoch was indeed a young respected geologist, I remember it myself when he first came to the notice of the general public in 1992. If you watch or read interviews given by him during that period he comes off much more measured, cautious, rational and intelligent. That's why it's so depressing to see him go off the fringe cliff into la la land the way he has.
1/12/2020 12:37:26 pm
Schoch also featured in 'Atlantis Reborn' the superb BBC Horizon team's hatchet job on several of Hancocks pet 'theories'. This is the programme which he still blubbers about to this day.
1/13/2020 10:11:29 am
There are two versions of the documentary. The first version had to be re-edited because Hancock was misrepresented by the BBC editing out a crucial piece of his interview. Hancock was successful in his appeal in being misrepresented by the BBC and Atlantis Reborn had to be re-cut.
Atlantis Reborn - BBC Adjudication
1/13/2020 01:41:30 pm
Put this message in wrong place before
1/13/2020 04:26:14 pm
There were three such documentaries altogether, having checked my archives.
1/11/2020 10:37:22 pm
If you're so smart, how do you account for potatoes in Lord of the Rings, huh?
The second doctor sucked
1/12/2020 12:45:17 am
Pommes de terre du mileu?
1/12/2020 12:50:58 am
I tango arcana dei
1/13/2020 07:02:09 pm
Blue Brain Priory of Sion Insanity
1/14/2020 06:11:41 am
The world is blue as an orange
1/14/2020 03:50:11 pm
I've never heard anything about water erosion in regards to the pyramids. My late father was in North Africa during WW2,and i have photos of the pyramids and the sphinx from his time there. Never mentioned anything about seeing water wear on either.
To call Eberhard Zangger's ideas "fringe extremist" is way too hard, although I agree that Zangger's Atlantis idea is wrong. This qualificaiton is especially strange in a context where Schoch claims that Luwian hieroglyphs have something to do with the Göbekli Tepe pictures, because ....... if Zangger is a "fringe extremist", what increase of qualification remains for Schoch?
1/11/2020 03:13:06 pm
Jason, it appears you're married to HP but you might want to reconsider. This obviously isn't your issue but they made a SSD that is built to fail after 3 years 9 months of use.
1/11/2020 07:34:44 pm
I'm not married to it. In fact, it's the first HP I've owned in more than 15 years. The first hard drive died after 9 months and the second after 3 months.
1/12/2020 04:08:23 am
That's an incredible coincidence. Obviously there are supernatural forces that are annoyed at you.
1/12/2020 04:06:39 am
I fear that the Gobekli Tepi stuff is going to be another Roswell. 30 years of bullshit, except worse because it's masking actual archaeologists' research into something real.
1/12/2020 10:47:39 am
Tony S Hit the Nail on the Head regarding several false claims Schoch made, as well as his insight on the Orion Correlation Theory. Discover Channel will probably next start using Astrology "experts" to explain Astronomy Correlational Theories.
1/12/2020 10:29:36 pm
Schoch seems to have done well for himself with those false claims. Makes me want to consider a second career in the fringe. Maybe I will jet off to some Caribbean paradise like the Bahamas and hop on the bandwagon of proclaiming underwater natural formations as ancient ruins.
1/13/2020 10:03:51 am
There's a mainstream trained professional geologist who came to the same conclusions about the Sphinx as Schoch but asked to keep his name private.
Kenneth L. Feder and Orion Mystery
1/13/2020 10:22:07 am
Kenneth L. Feder has not addressed the Orion Mystery claims in a critical way in his books about fringe archaeology.
1/13/2020 12:32:31 pm
If I was a geologist who had reached the same unsubstantiated looney tunes conclusion as Schoch I would probably want my name kept out of it too.
1/13/2020 01:23:37 pm
I take the easy route and just say that poster "ACTUALLY" is lying with a made-up story. It's usually the right answer.
1/13/2020 01:33:40 pm
Yes, it's possible that West made-up the anonymous geologist after he found Schoch
1/13/2020 02:03:38 pm
Hence my use of "if."
1/13/2020 03:01:41 pm
No, your use of "If" was because you are not a geologist. Fuck that shit, Pabst Blue Ribbon.
1/13/2020 03:27:03 pm
If you are going to try to play grammar Nazi then you might review your use of "usually" in this particular context. And tighten up that mask it is slipping again.
1/13/2020 03:37:49 pm
"It's usually the right answer" is somehow bad grammar?
1/13/2020 04:28:00 pm
In over his head, unable to understand why, and quickly going into meltdown mode because if it. That's the old American Negro that we all know and don't love.
Kent's Overly tight Sphinxter
1/13/2020 05:17:29 pm
I hope kent= American negro is not a stunning revelation for you. He USUALLY is not this flagrant about it, though. Sorry but I couldn't help myself.
1/13/2020 05:18:02 pm
Yes, newcomers, imaginary waitresses and all too real alcoholism is how it's done.
1/13/2020 05:31:07 pm
Without going into the typing and capitalization mistakes, because everyone does that, this stands out as especially pathetic:
1/13/2020 06:05:52 pm
Kent, if you want to show off
1/13/2020 07:10:53 pm
what a grammar whiz you are, you should have hyphenated "all- too-real" when you wrote "all too real alcoholism," because the word "alcoholism" is a determiner word.
Kent, you revealed yourself to be
1/13/2020 10:55:56 pm
a despicable misogynist. Awesome comment: "Always nice to hear from the one guy who's never fucked a waitress." Because that's what waitresses are there for: for lowlifes like Kent to treat like sex objects. Because everyone knows that waitresses are so trashy that if you've never had sex with them, well, then, you can't get anybody.
1/13/2020 11:52:15 pm
Whoa! In my experience waitresses are nice ladies who bring me food and beverages. I don't bother them with "Hey look at what I wrote on the internet" because that seems pathetic. And Rupert Pupkinish.
Go Back To Jungle To Reset
1/14/2020 06:14:39 am
To go back to the time when men were men - and women were grateful
Going back to Ken Feder
1/14/2020 06:17:35 am
Ken Feder does not belly ache about the Orion correlation theory of Bauval & Gilbert
1/14/2020 12:22:07 pm
Dropping F-bombs is in poor taste and is a greater sin than the minor grammatical errors you attacked. Very irrational behavior.
1/14/2020 04:29:02 pm
As I understand it your recommendation is that I should kill myself because I talked about fucking waitresses. I appreciate the advice and will put that on my "to do" list.
1/14/2020 05:07:07 pm
"As I understand it...."
1/14/2020 05:21:05 pm
Please stop using this roundabout method to contact me. I have told you repeatedly I am not interested in 13 year old boys and assisting you would be both morally wrong and legally wrong. I want no part of it. Please do not ever contact me again.
1/14/2020 06:10:52 pm
Nice illustration of my point about ink blots.
1/14/2020 06:27:21 pm
Damn, he walked right into that one.
Totally not Ritz cameras in Bethesda md.
1/14/2020 10:24:18 pm
The cool thing about Adam Walsh is not the he was murdered by a child killer, but that his father routinely submits 400+ print orders of photos of his corporate getaways with his hot assistants.
1/13/2020 12:48:48 am
Contrary to what was shown on the coasttocoastam.com site, Robert Schoch appeared on Coast To Coast AM the evening of Sunday Jan. 12 from 11 pm EST, maybe even from 10 pm EST. Talking Sphinx, solar event ending the Ice Age, Göbekli Tepe and Çatalhöyük, along with all kinds of other nonsense. Referenced the NBC documentary "Mystery of the Sphinx". George Noory his usual gullible self. He doesn't understand how a comet that didn't hit the Sphinx failed to damage the Sphinx.
Kent, are you the
1/13/2020 07:41:51 pm
patron saint of waitress now and their main spokesman, as well as defender of stupid ideas? I was a waitress in college and had many customers that I considered friends. I didn't "live" for those conversations, but I certainly enjoyed them.
1/13/2020 09:55:52 pm
No doubt he can also call spirits from the vasty deep.
1/14/2020 12:34:52 am
Spirits (and imaginary waitresses) are Doc Rock's thing. I'm strictly beer wine and what the kids call "Molly". Turns out it's illegal now, with the inevitable decline in quality.
1/14/2020 03:16:53 pm
Kent is the type of person that would take a dump on the sidewalk while screaming obscenities at someone for spitting in the street. Appears jealous of someone that can successfully socialize with the opposite sex,
1/14/2020 04:19:13 pm
In what universe does posting on the internet about showing possibly non-imaginary waitresses internet posts that you claim are yours count as "successfully socializ[ing] with the opposite sex"?
Kent, in every universe,
1/15/2020 08:10:45 am
Including the multiverse, is the ability to have a civil conversation "successfully socializing."
1/15/2020 09:36:27 am
Sheldon has problems with interpersonal relations, especially with women. Sheldon struggles with the abstract unless it directly relates to his own narrow field of interest. Sheldon has a very narrow worldview. Sheldon is prone to Tourette's-like outbursts. Sound familiar?
1/14/2020 12:49:02 am
"You can't handle the truth!" Nicholson in that movie.
IF AN ALIEN COMES TO EARTH
1/14/2020 08:33:10 am
IF AN ALIEN COMES TO EARTH - chances are he will be humanoid, breathe exactly the same oxygen and speak perfect English. It should also be mentioned that if he travelled in a craft faster than the speed of light it would not have crashed into any asteroids, meteorites, planets, comets or stars because the aliens would have invented something miraculous that would have avoided that from happening.
1/14/2020 01:19:06 am
Thank you for every other excellent article. Where else may anybody get
An Anonymous Nerd
1/15/2020 09:14:12 pm
The Fringe is a great business model these days. Lots of money there. Sad, but true.
1/26/2020 12:55:38 am
Aside to KAL , jason doesnt delete the comments because he has written most of them in an effort to create drama, darling, drama drama drama.
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