Maya Ruins in Georgia—The Real Story
by Dr. Greg Little
The December 21, 2011 headline of the article put online by the Examiner declared: "Ruins in Georgia mountains show evidence of Maya connection." It was written by Richard Thornton who writes articles on architecture and design for the Examiner's Web site, which pays writers' fees based on how many people view the ads on the Internet page. According to the article, which created a massive Internet response, "a group of archaeologists discovered the ruins of a 1,100-year-old Maya city" on the sides of a steep mountain in Georgia. The article related that 154 stone masonry walls, a sophisticated irrigation system, and other stone ruins were at the site. The archaeological team was led, back in 1999, by Dr. Mark Williams, who recovered pottery at the mounds found on the top of the mountain. The article, quite large for an Examiner post, presented virtually no evidence for the claim of Maya ruins other than the claim of the stone walls and Native language similarities to Mayan, but referred readers to Thornton's book on the site.
The Archaeologist Responds
After being inundated by media inquiries and continual contact from other interested parties, the archaeologist cited by the Examiner article (the University of Georgia's Mark Williams) became frustrated and even angered by the report. Williams wrote that the report "is not true" and that he had "been driven crazy" by the allegations. Williams added, "The Maya connection to legitimate Georgia archaeology is a wild and unsubstantiated guess on the part of the Thornton fellow. No archaeologist will defend this flight of fancy." Williams wrote to the Examiner, "I am the archaeologist Mark Williams mentioned in the article. This is total and complete bunk."
The actual Georgia "Maya" site is best known as the "Kenimer Mound Complex" and is listed in my 2008 Illustrated Encyclopedia of Native American Mounds & Earthworks. On the top of a mountain near Sautee, Georgia are two mounds. The largest of these is an irregular-shaped pyramid mound that stands 35 feet in height. Adjacent to it is a smaller rectangular mound just 3 feet in height.
There are what appear to be ground undulations along the mountainside that could have been shaped terraces, but there is no definitive evidence pointing to what these ground-covered forms actually are. After the Examiner report came out I received numerous inquiries about it, and was even asked by a few people to change the A.R.E.-sponsored "Georgia Mound Builders Tour" scheduled for May 2-6, 2012, to include the "new Maya ruins." Because the Kenimer site is small, privately owned, and clearly has no definitive evidence pointing to a Maya influence, we won't be visiting this site. But we are visiting one massive mound complex in Georgia that archaeologists have clearly linked to an ancient Mexican influence.
Edgar Cayce's Readings on America's
In our 2001 book, Mound Builders: Edgar Cayce's Forgotten Record of Ancient America (coauthored with Dr. Lora Little and John Van Auken), we examined 30 ideas presented in 68 Cayce readings with information about ancient civilizations in the Americas. In readings given in 1933 and 1943 (5750-1 and 3528-1) Cayce made it clear that sometime after 3000 B.C., groups of people who had been living in the Yucatan and Mexico entered into America's south and gradually moved north, becoming what we know as Mound Builders. At the time Cayce made these readings, American archaeology had accepted that mound and pyramid building progressed in the opposite direction (north to south). However, as we have detailed in books and numerous articles, it is now known that the movement of this culture was south to north, precisely as Cayce related.
One site included on the May 2012 A.R.E. Georgia Mound Tour is Ocmulgee National Monument, a massive complex inhabited as early as 17,000 years ago. There are seven huge mounds at the site with the largest being a truncated pyramid standing 55 feet high with a base of 270x300 feet. An underground earth-lodge is at the center of the site and we plan to conduct a ceremony while inside this earthen structure. Ocmulgee is one of the few American mound complexes where archaeologists concede that a definite influence from ancient Mexican cultures is present. Specific types of tobacco, clothing, pottery, and statues excavated at the site show the connection. It is thought that when the Teotihuacan pyramid-building culture collapsed around AD 600, a migration took place to the north, eventually reaching Georgia as well as other places.
Gregory L. Little, Ed.D. , part Seneca, is author of the Illustrated Encyclopedia of Native American Mounds & Earthworks, an authoritative guide to America's mound sites. His other books include Mound Builders; Grand Illusions, Edgar Cayce's Atlantis, Secrets of the Ancient World, Ancient South America, and People of the Web, and he has over 30 other books in various areas of psychology. He is the publisher of Alternate Perceptions online magazine (Mysterious-America.net). Although he has been a member of the A.R.E. for over 20 years, he became very interested in the Cayce readings while studying the effects of ritual on brain processes in the late 1980s. In addition to being popular speakers at A.R.E. Conferences, both he and his wife, Lora, have been featured in documentaries on Discovery, the Learning Channel, the History Channel, Sci-Fi, MSNBC, and the National Geographic. They are leading A.R.E.'s popular Mound Builders tour from May 2 to 6, 2012.
Spiritual Bonds with Our Pets
By Doug Knueven
Q) What are your thoughts on whether or not pets have souls? What does the Cayce material have to say on this topic? Dan, Texas
A) Traditional veterinarians might ask, "What does such an issue have to do with medicine?" I, on the other hand, think this is a fitting question. As a holistic practitioner, I take into account the entire patient: body, mind, and spirit. In fact, I dedicate an entire chapter to this topic in my first book from A.R.E. Press, Stand by Me: A Holistic Handbook for Pets, Their People, and the Lives They Share Together.
Most pet caregivers have no doubt that their animals are more than stimulus/response, biomechanical machines. Is it not obvious that each pet has an independent spirit? Specific breeds certainly have characteristics in common. For example, herding breeds of dogs in general have different temperaments than, say, those of the retrieving breeds. At the same time, each individual of a particular breed has his/her unique personality. These characteristics are certainly not due to strictly genetic factors.
According to the Cayce readings, the human soul is made up of Spirit, mind and will. And, according to the readings, the will is the sticking point in the argument for the animal soul.
"The will is that factor which makes man different from the rest of the animal kingdom…" Edgar Cayce Readings 909-1
"Free will – that which is the universal gift to the souls of the children of men; that each entity may know itself to be itself and yet one with the universal cause." Edgar Cayce Readings 2620-2
"Man alone is given that birthright of free will. He alone may defy his God!" Edgar Cayce Readings 5757-1
Okay, so maybe the apparent lack of will is not such a bad thing after all. In fact, if animals lack free will, it only means that they do not have a human soul. Animal actions are not held to the same moral standards as those of their people. Would we hold our dog morally responsible for stealing the neighbor dog's bone? Should he be tried by a jury of his peers?
A surprising result of researching the Edgar Cayce readings that refer to pets is that there is evidence of the reincarnation of animals. A case in point is the "little dog Mona." In three separate readings (268-3, 280-1, and 405-1) Mona is said to have been the reincarnation of a lion from Roman times. It is apparent that some of those near this little creature in this lifetime were once faced with a very different incarnation of her in the form of a lion in the Christian martyrdom era. In still another reading, 276-6, a 16-year-old girl was told that her current pet had been with her in an Egyptian incarnation.
It is obvious from the readings and from the personal experience of most pet owners that our pets have a spiritual nature. We form bonds with our animals that defy a materialistic view. We find comfort in our human-animal relationships that many studies show has a positive influence on our health. Yes, pet owners live longer than those who do not share their lives with a special animal.
The question remains, "What does all this talk about animal souls have to do with their health?" I have found that just acknowledging the deeper levels of animal existence leads to a more complete healing attitude. Holistically-minded veterinarians have multiple levels from which to operate. Besides conventional medicine and surgery, and physical alternative modalities such as herbs, chiropractic, and acupuncture, we also have energy medicine.
Homeopathic remedies are often diluted to the point that not a single molecule of the original medicinal substance remains, yet they have biological effects. Prayer might be viewed as simply wishful thinking by conventional practitioners; still many studies validate its health benefits. Animal communication is dismissed by some, but I have seen firsthand, miraculous results from such consultations.
Holistic pet care is complete care that encompasses body, mind, and spirit. Our pets possess soul attributes and these facets of their existence need to be addressed for true health to be realized. The spiritual bonds we share with our companion animals also enhance our own well-being, as we connect with God through Her creations.
Doug Knueven, DVM, is a regular contributor to Venture Inward magazine and the author of Stand By Me, A Holistic Handbook for Animals, People, and the Lives They Share, available at ARECatalog.com or 800-333-4499, and Holistic Health Guide: Natural Care for the Whole Dog. For more information go to BeaverAnimalClinic.com. He'll be in Virginia Beach on Saturday, January 21 from 9 to 11 am for the Holistic Pet Care: Practical Tips program.
Excerpt from March / April 2009 issue of Venture Inward magazine available in the online member section.
By Louise Wild
A few days before Halloween of 2008, I had a bad fall that resulted in four days in the hospital, two and a half weeks in a rehab facility, and several weeks of therapists' home visits. During this experience, I relearned several lessons that I had been ignoring, or to which I was insufficiently paying attention.
Lesson 1 – Appreciate simple things
Being a task-oriented person, I didn't take time to "stop and smell the roses." During my recovery, I was forced to slow down and, in doing so, relearn an appreciation of everyday sights, such as the beauty of nature, one of God's greatest gifts to us. Fall flowers, colorful trees, birds that had not yet migrated, bright sunny days, and clear, star-filled nights were sights I took time to enjoy and for which I was grateful.
Certain everyday experiences became more meaningful to me. Just by getting up in the morning and realizing I had been given another day to spend on this earth made me, as Deepak Chopra wrote, "open to the wonder and delight of living a human life." Being able to linger over my cup of tea and read the daily newspaper more thoroughly felt luxurious to me. My eating habits changed greatly. Rather than rush through a meal, because I had something to do or someplace to go, I ate more slowly and enjoyed the taste of the simplest of foods. A leisurely shower instead of a two-minute rushed one was a treat. Things that I had grown so used to seemed new again.
Lesson 2 – Cherish your friends and family
My family was very solicitous during my whole ordeal. My husband visited the hospital and rehab twice a day, giving up his normal activities, including playing golf. Plus he made calls, did errands, brought me what I needed from home, and generally gave me support. I was so grateful for this. The only other family I have locally is a cousin, whom I see occasionally, but my children and grandchildren called often, and some wrote touching notes. One of my sons even offered to come from quite a distance and build a ramp at our house if I needed one, which I didn't; and one of my daughters was willing to come and get me and bring me to her home in Massachusetts, but that wasn't necessary.
You learn quickly which friends you can count on to be there for you. These friends, including my friends at A.R.E., took time from their busy lives to call, visit, send cards and flowers, and bring me books, magazines, and snacks. They lightened the dreariness of rehab and warmed my heart. I relearned how precious family and friends are, and I wish I could adequately express this sentiment to them.
Lesson 3 – Prayer is powerful
I am convinced that my rapid recovery was due, in large part, to the prayers that were being said for me. The collective effect of prayers of friends, family, the Glad Helpers at A.R.E., and people I didn't even know, was so strong that I couldn't possibly do anything but get better. I could feel that strength urging me on during "down" times, and I realized again that the power of prayer is very real. We have been given examples of that power throughout history, but there's nothing like first-hand experience to really convince one. Prayer is one of the most powerful tools we have to bring about change.
Lesson 4 – Don't let ego rule
Most of us are concerned about our appearances. We try to be clean, attractively dressed, and have hairstyles that are suited to us. In rehab, being clean was not a problem, as we had daily baths or showers. And looking attractive was not a major concern, at least not for me. I gave my ego a vacation and hung around much of the time in hospital gowns, wore little makeup, and presented myself to people with hair that was badly in need of cutting and styling. And I didn't care!
Also, most of us try to be interesting conversationalists. However, rehab is not conductive to stimulating conversation. Some of my visitors were glad that I managed to stay awake. I imagined that people who visited me talked about how terrible I looked and how dull I was becoming, but I didn't care! I felt that people needed to accept me as I am. It was kind of freeing to let the ego rest.
Now that I'm home and out and about, I'm a little more careful of my appearance and conversation, but I still have my bad days. I try hard not to hurt or offend anyone, but if I'm not at my best, so be it.
This is just a small example of letting the ego go. On a larger scale, I now realize that the ego rules too much of our lives and keeps us from knowing who we truly are. I intend to be more aware of that.
Lesson 5 – Life and health are fleeting
We all realize that we can be alive and feel healthy one minute and be struck down by a heart attack, stroke, or accident the next. Therefore, we should pay more attention to our lifestyles, our choices, and our movements. After the fall, in which I had broken my wrist and fractured my pelvic bone, I felt blessed that I was still alive, did not require surgery, had a good prognosis for recovery, and still had my wits about me. While in rehab, I had seen people who had been mentally damaged and/or who might never make it out of their wheelchairs. I felt grateful that I wasn't in either of those situations. I was determined to pursue my recovery so that I could go home as soon as possible. Compared to average recovery time, mine was considered rapid.
Now, I move around much more carefully, pay attention to my choices, and pray that I will continue to be well.
We've been told that everything happens for a reason. When I was well enough to think about my situation, I wondered, Why? Why me? Well, maybe what happened to me happened in part so that I could relearn some truths, such as those I have listed. After all, aren't we here on "Classroom Earth" to learn, and in some cases, to relearn? So slow down, be careful, be grateful, pray, and keep learning!
Louise Wild received her M.Ed. from Northeastern University in Boston, Mass., and worked as an editor for educational publishing companies and as a reading specialist in public schools. She and her husband, Ken, were introduced to the Cayce material in Massachusetts and, after moving to Virginia Beach in 1989, immediately joined A.R.E. Wild worked as an A.R.E. front-desk staff member for 10 years before retiring in 2009. She continues to volunteer, teaching the Sunday noon meditation class, giving survey lectures twice per month, and spending one morning each week at the Volunteer Call Center. She is a mother of four and grandmother to eight wonderful children.