Other Unorthodox Catastrophism
Research continues into planetary catastrophism which calls for large-scale
disruptions of the solar system involving massive planetary orbital
displacements during the Holocene. Exponents of this viewpoint in the
twentieth century include Immanual Velikovsky and a host of his followers,
Zecharia Sitchin, and Hanns Hörbiger. I do not agree that the physical,
historical, or mythological evidence requires or supports such disruptions.
I do agree that there is increasing evidence that astronomical catastrophes
have played a much larger part in the history of our planet and of
humanity than has been credited in the past. In particular, I believe
that the ideas of the British neo-catastrophists
have merit. They posit that cosmic accretion events caused by the
breakup of giant comets in the inner solar system have affected the Earth's
climate and environment even over short time periods of a few thousand years.
The following web pages discuss a number of alternative catastrophist viewpoints.
While I believe most of these ideas are wrong, they challenge us to think
more clearly about the assumptions which underlie more orthodox theories.
Some of these minority viewpoints might be more readily integrated into the
mainstream (the Tollmanns, Van Flandern). You may also be interested in
criticisms of some of these positions.
- Eridu Books
offers information from Alan Alford's book "Gods of the New
Millenium" which posits an interventionist history for
humanity similar to Sitchin's. Alford's most recent book The
Phoenix Solution takes a different approach. Alford now
suggests that much of ancient Egyptian mythology derives from
an exploded planet cult.
Alexander and Edith Tollmann
Donald W. Patten
- Flood and Joshua's Long Day
offers an overview of the catastrophist ideas of Donald
Patten, who suggests that Mars used to follow a very different
orbit that brought it close to the Earth from around 9900 B.C.
to 701 B.C., at different times causing the Deluge and other
- Planetary Catastrophism (Pacific Meridian Publishing)
offers books and essays by Donald W. Patten and coworkers who
invoke an errant planet Mars and nova-like solar episodes as
the cause of several episodes of catastrophism during the
- Hanns Hörbiger's Cosmic Ice Theory
by Loren Petrich summarizes the catastrophist cosmology of
Austrian mining engineer Hanns Hörbiger and his associate
Philipp Fauth. Their "cosmic ice" theory was politically
influential during the Nazi regime.
- Hörbiger, Hanns
(in German) offers a photo and brief biography of
Immanuel Velikovsky and Saturnism
is the official web site for this pro-Velikovsky journal
published by leaders in the Saturnist movement.
also has a second unoffical web site sponsored by the Society
for Interdisciplinary Studies.
- Ted Holden's Catastrophism web site
collects together documents representing various flavors of
the Velikovsky and Saturnist schools of catastrophism.
- Catastrophism! Man, Myth and Mayhem in Ancient History and the Sciences. CD-Rom disc
offers a CD containing many articles and books about various
catastrophist and historical revisionist theories, primarily
but not exclusively from the Velikovskian tradition.
- Immanuel Velikovsky Archive
offers the text of several previously unpublished works by
Velikovsky, including Days and Years,
Before the Day Breaks, In the
Beginning, and The Dark Age of
Greece, as well as some of Velikovsky's
- Kronia Communications
publishes the mythscape video series. The first video
entitled Remembering the End of the World
features Saturnist David Talbott, author of The Saturn
Myth, presenting his version of planetary
- Kronia web page image analysis
by Wayne Throop critically analyzes images produced by
Saturnists of their polar configuration (alignment of Saturn,
Venus and Mars along the north pole of the Earth's axis).
Throop concludes that the images cannot occur with the degree
of symmetry and centering the Saturnists propose. Throop also
offers criticisms of
other aspects of Velikovskian catastrophism and
- Neptune, Velikovsky, and the Name of the Game
by Owen Gingerich appeared in the "Wonders" column in the
September, 1996 issue of Scientific American.
Gingerich discusses the role of prediction in science and why
Velikovsky's "predictions" of radio noise from Jupiter and
high temperatures on Venus were not considered as such by
- A Program Meeting
caricatures some of the folks in the Velikovsky movement.
Very amusing if you know the folks being roasted.
- Saturnist Page
by Ev Cochrane features articles by Ev Cochrane, Dave
Talbott, and Dwardu Cardona on the Saturnist approach to
mythological interpretation and planetary catastrophism.
- Shade Tree Physics - Velikovsky Page
by Robert S. Fritzius offers his slant on portions of
- The Society for Historical Research
seeks to reconstruct history based upon the idea that
extraterrestrial agents caused global catastrophes within
recorded human history.
- The Society for Interdisciplinary Studies
(SIS) is the British Velikovsky Society, although it has
broadened its reach in recent years to encompass other forms
of catastrophism such as that of Clube and Napier.
- Truth Under Tyranny - Catastrophe of Ethics
by author James P. Hogan discusses the Velikovsky affair.
Hogan is sympathetic to Velikovsky's ideas and castigates
scientists for their treatment of him and his ideas over the
- The Velikovskian
is a pro-Velikovsky journal edited by Charles Ginenthal.
- Velikovsky Affair and Other Musings
by author Jerry Pournelle offers his personal thought about
Velikovsky's ideas. Pournelle believes that Velikovsky was
almost entirely wrong, but advises that we "take Velikosvky
... as an early starting point for reconsidering what we know
about both astronomy and the Bronze Age; not as a specific
source of hypotheses."
- Long-time Velikovskian C. J. Ransom offers a Web page entitled Velikovsky: Cosmos and Chronos
which provides more information about Velikovsky.
- Clark Whelton in Velikovsky, Fundamentalism, and the Revised Chronology
recounts his meeting with Velikovsky in 1977 about the
Ages in Chaos series.
by Richard M. Smith offers information on Saturnism and
Velikovsky as well as American artifacts reputed to bear
ancient old-world scripts.
- Earth Under Fire
is the title of Paul Laviolette's book in which he suggests
that ancient myths, esoteric lore, and ice core records
describe a recurrent galactic-based catastrophe. See the publisher's
page for this book for a detailed table of contents and a
video accompanying the book.
- Superwave Cataclysm
is an essay by John Bloomer discussing the suggestion by Paul
Laviolette that a periodic galactic disaster, caused by
explosions in the core of our galaxy, recurs every 13,000
Tom Van Flandern
- Exploding Planets
is a semi-moderated forum for the discussion of various
theories of exploding planets, particularly that of Tom Van
Flandern. Discussions of Alan Alford's book The
Phoenix Solution are also welcome.
- Meta Research
focuses on Tom Van Flandern's work. His article
"New Evidence of Artificiality at Cydonia on Mars" not
only discusses the by-now famous "face" and pyramids at
Cydonia, but also offers Van Flandern's latest modification of
the exploded planet model, which involves the explosion of at
least three different planetary bodies:
Twenty-earth-mass planet "K" in the outer main
asteroid belt about 250 mya at the Permian/Triassic boundary;
Four-earth-mass planet "V" in the inner main
asteroid belt about 65 mya at the Cretaceous-Tertiary
One-hundredth earth mass Body C
(source of comets) in the inner asteroid belt about 3.2
- Tom Van Flandern
is probably best known for his continued championing of the
"exploded planet" hypothesis which suggests that the main-belt
(at least) asteroids and comets resulted from the explosion of
a planet which formerly existed between Mars and Jupiter.
(This is where the main belt asteroids reside now). The
exploded planet hypothesis is currently a minority view, but
one with a long history, going back to the start of the
nineteenth century. Van Flandern's book
Dark Matter, Missing Planets and New Comets: Paradoxes
Resolved, Origins Illuminated discusses the evidence for
the exploded planet theory.
- Sitchin index
by Royton Paynter offers links to sites about the works of
Zecharia Sitchen, both pro and con. Sitchin interprets the
gods in religion and mythology from around the world as aliens
from the planet Marduk. This planet approaches the Earth every
3,600 years and causes world-wide catastrophes such the
Other unorthodox catastrophism
- Alfred de Grazia's Encyclopedia of Quantavolution and Catastrophes
provides an overview of his catastrophist ideas which are
strongly influenced by Velikovsky. Many of his books are now
available in machine-readable on CDROM.
from the University of North Texas history department offers
an annotated set of links to web sites about catastrophism of
- Creation Concept
by Douglas Cox offers several unorthodox theories about
geology, the flood, the ice ages, the drift. Includes list of
links to origins and creationist sites.
- Electric Sun
by Donald Scott discusses the idea popular among some
Velikovskians that the Sun is powered by electricity instead
of nuclear reactions.
- Emilio Spedicato
of the University of Bergamo, Italy presents essays entitled
"Apollo objects, Atlantis and other tales: a catastrophical
scenario for discontinuities in hman history" which discusses
the possible role of NEOs in Holocene catastrophism; and
"Numerical Solution of the Planetary Alignment Equations"
which discusses the dynamics of the Saturnist Polar
- Evidence for a Major Impact Event in the Late Third Millennium BC
by Timo Niroma attempts to link astronomical events with
destruction layers in the archaeological record. Niroma
discusses two possible periods of impact-generated
destruction: about 3100 BC and about 2200 BC. He also
discusses the effect of solar variability on climate and the
relationship between planetary positions (particularly of
Jupiter) and the solar sunspot cycle.
- Formation of the Asteroid Belt by Catastrophic Destruction of the "Missing Planet"
is by high school students Joshua A. Kortbein and Anthony W.
Thompson. They wrote a FORTRAN simulation program to
investigate the evolution of the main asteroid belt assuming
it started out as a single planet which exploded.
- H O L O S C I E N C E
is Walt Thornhill's web site on which he discusses his
version of the "electric universe."
- Lords of the Earth
by D. M Urquidi offers his analysis of Mayan, Aztec, Incan,
and other Native Amrerican cultures. Urquidi suggests that
myths and legends from these cultures reflect a great
meteoritic impact calamity.
- Polar Publishing
presents books by authors such as C. Warren Hunt, Peter James
(the geologist, not the historian), and others which challenge
orthodox geology concerning the role of impact events in
generating geological features as well as alternatives to
plate tectonics and new theories of endogeny.
- Pole Shift Forum
seeks to stimulate thought and host informed debate about
earth-bound mechanisms that might possibly cause the Earth's
crust to be shifted globally with catastrophic suddenness.
Highlights the ideas of Charles Hapgood.
- Richard Noone
is the author of 5/5/2000
Ice: The Ultimate Disaster which suggests disasters such
as pole shifts result from special planetary alignments.
- Unofficial Web Page for The Hab Theory
by Scott Rainey discusses the novel by Allan W. Eckert that
highlights Hugh A. Brown's theory of global catastrophe..
- When The Sky Fell - In Search of Atlantis
surveys the ideas of Rand
and Rose Flem-Ath whose book of this title suggests an
Antarctic home for Atlantis destroyed by crustal
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Last modified by
pib on July 6, 2003.