Book Review: God’s Time Capsule, Volume I

Posted on May 5, 2012 by nathanalbright

God’s Time Capsule: The Great Pyramid And Sphinx Of Giza Egypt, Volume 1, by Ralph Lyman

A short (about 150 pages) but highly technical work filled with diagrams and photos (and even a few geometry proofs), this book is of interest as part of a debate about the purpose and design of the Great Pyramid, a subject about which the author has very strong and very striking views. Additionally, the author has a lot of measurements and calculations upon which his opinions are based, including a high degree of command in the relevant bibliography concerning the Great Pyramid in particular.

One of the most striking facts about the Great Pyramid that this book makes very obvious is that both the Great Pyramid and to a lesser extent the Second Pyramid are heavily mathematical in nature. They are of much greater architectural skill than the pyramids built during the time of the IV Dynasty (Cheops and Khafre), and show an extremely great awareness of the size of the earth, position of true north, and the relationship between the area of squares and the circumference of circles. The Second Pyramid is fairly straightforwardly based on a 3-4-5 Pythagorean triangle (showing that the knowledge of the Pythagorean theorem was very ancient in history). The Great Pyramid is more striking, with notable triangles as the so-called “Christ Triangle” of 26 degrees, 18 minutes, 9.7 seconds, the pi angle of 51 degrees, 51 minutes, and 14.3 seconds. The Great Pyramid, through its royal cubits and polar inches in its construction, shows a strong awareness of the size of the world and the orientation of true north (and even, it would appear, Bethlehem), showing as well the connection between our standard units and the dimensions of our world, giving us a reason to support continued use of such units.

Additionally, the careful design of the Great Pyramid, even accounting for compression due to its massively heavy construction, seems to indicate an immense amount of care in its design, along with a high degree of sophistication in its construction that later pyramids notably lack. Later Egyptian monarchs attempted to copy the Great Pyramid, recognizing it as an immensely important relic, but lacked a full knowledge of the interior structure, so they tended to ape the descending passage without using the often-repeated displacement factor (a number of 286 polar inches that appears over and over again in the design of the Great Pyramid) or the ascending passage and various chambers.

By positing such strong views about the knowledge of the Pyramid Builder, who the author theorizes was Enoch (and providing detailed mathematical evidence, some of it coming from Petrie, who was opposed to the idea of the Pyramid as showing sophisticated knowledge of the world), the author makes himself a strong claim for following in the footsteps of such notable writers as Rutherford. The author manages to be gracious with those researchers like Petrie whose work was careful even if his conclusions were a bit disingenuous, and briefly dismisses the ad hominem attacks that come from so-called Egytpologists.

Besides the intimate connection between our standard units of measurement and the size of the earth, as well as the deeply advanced mathematical nature of the Pyramid (including the connection between different calculations of the solar year), perhaps the most intriguing aspect of this book is the question about the relationship between mathematics and prophecy. After all, the scientists of the Voyager II mission and other SETI projects use mathematics as a way to differentiate between random interstellar noise and the existence of intelligent beings, assuming correctly that a sentient being would understand universal mathematical laws and constants and be able to bridge communications barriers through numbers. It would appear that a large (if unstated) part of Lyman’s thesis is that the builder and architect of the Great Pyramid sought to communicate some aspects of profound mathematical understanding to whomever was able to understand it in the future, to recognize the skill and wisdom of the creator of that immense structure and to give him credit for his understanding, and to seek to understand the riddles of that building given the mutual recognition of respect for mathematical skill. For those who want to know more about the book, the author has made a website that will answer some questions [1].

The book makes a strong point in arguing for a 15th century BC Exodus. The arguments for this from history (including the monotheism of Akenaton) are added to a knowledge of Egypt’s sudden military impotence post-Exodus, an accurate dating of Jericho’s fall, and some of the measurements found in the Pyramid. Together, the arguments make a persuasive argument for the early Exodus, especially if you take Genesis 15 as referring to 400 years in Canaan and Egypt, as I do. Additionally, the book comments a little on the Sphinx (I am hoping that Volume II comments more), looking at its water weathering patterns, which help provide an indication of its early predynastic construction.

So, this book, though short, is an immensely deep and intriguing book, and one would expect the second volume (hopefully coming soon) to be equally technical as well as thought-provoking. I only wish for myself that the author had been a bit more detailed and precise about some aspects of his argumentation. For example, the author quotes a professor who stated that the apiru was a name given to the Israelites (in the el-Amarna tablets of the 15th and 14th century BC) and that this may have been the source of the term Hebrew. This seems only partly true, based on the lengthy argumentation about this fact (and the fact that the Apiru were attested at a far larger geographical expanse than the people of Israel alone). While the Canaanites may have called the Israelites apiru as a sign of disrespect for their rootless background, the source of the word Hebrew appears to come from another ancient word ‘ibrum, a term used in the Nuzi tablets to describe semi-nomads like the Patriarchs that comes from about 1800 BC or so, several centuries before the Exodus, during the time of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, as researched by K.A. Kitchen [2]. But these are only minor quibbles, which could be answered in a couple of short footnotes, that in no way mar the careful deductive reasoning of the author. This book, like the author’s previous work, shows a strong interest in dates and times and a willingness to follow the evidence wherever it leads, and those are traits to be admired and appreciated.

 

 

Book Review: God’s Time Capsule: The Great Pyramid And Sphinx of Gaza Egypt, Volume II

Posted on January 15, 2014 by nathanalbright

God’s Time Capsule: The Great Pyramid And Sphinx Of Gaza Egypt, Volume II, by Ralph Lyman

This book is the third book in a series of three books by Ralph Lyman dealing with the chronology of ancient history [1]. In reality, though, this book is really the central book of the three. This book is chock full of drawings and photographs from the author’s own trips to Egypt. This is a labor of love, and a matter that the author cares passionately about. This passion fills every page of this book (at 150 pages, they aren’t too many). Those readers who appreciated the author’s previous two books should appreciate this one, though it takes a fair amount of reading and reflection, as this is not a straightforward and simple book to read.

What makes this book a challenge is its combination of various factors. One of them is the fact that the author has an obvious passion for the pyramid and for the idea that the pyramid is a chronograph. The book includes a selected group of ancient texts in order to help bolster the credibility of the pyramid as a gospel written in stone that records the history of mankind, particularly aspects of salvation history, through its dimensions and symbolism. The book includes a lot of calculations, comparisons with other pyramid experts, and a fair amount of chronology. Included as well are a lot of guesses about the purpose and meaning of various dimensions and quirks, and also some chapters dealing with scientific knowledge and the meanings of numbers in the Bible, which are important because of the dimensions within the pyramid that relate to some of those numbers (19 and 38, to give but a couple of examples).

As is the case with the author’s work in general, the point and approach of this book are straightforward. The book is a deductive book; if you believe the premises of the books, then the author rigorously seeks to prove his point. Those with a fondness for mathematics and ancient texts and buildings will appreciate this particular book, which touches on aspects of textual criticism, the Gospel of the Stars (which explains the whole meaning of the sphinx in the first place as being a sign of a particular moment in time. Of course, the ancients were vastly more fond of chronological references than we are in our modern age [2], and devoted much of their scientific resources to calendars and chronological matters. This book accurately captures that interest. Readers who share these interests and are at least willing to consider the Great Pyramid as having a role as a time machine of the sort the ancient world could make will find a lot to ponder and muse upon. The author has spent decades of effort in writing this work and this is a worthy accomplishment, if a difficult one to read quickly.