Saturday, November 22, 2014

Serpent Sanctuary

Hello Everyone. Here is my next article from the Genius of Ancient Man Blog. It was originally posted on November 12, 2014. I obsessed over this topic for several weeks and I'm eager to hear other's thoughts on it! I hope you enjoy.

Serpent Sanctuary

By Bethany Youngblood

                       Wikimedia Commons

In chapter nine of The Genius of Ancient Man we briefly cover the commonalities in world religions and legends. Remarkably, many religions were monotheistic in their beginnings and we can even find traces of Judeo-Christian beliefs woven throughout ancient practices.[1] This makes sense because after the Flood, Noah and his sons would have passed down the true accounts of God's work. 

However, as mankind continued to rebel against God and reject the truth, pagan counterfeits began to twist truth and proper worship of God. Distorted beliefs mixed with truth were passed down and dispersed with the people across the globe after the Tower of Babel. So just like we find traces of Judeo-Christian beliefs in ancient religion, we also find numerous similar distortions throughout ancient cultures. In this article we will be focusing on the prominence of serpent worship.

Worshiping Snakes? 

In our modern eyes these creatures do not seem like something to be venerated. And in ancient times it wasn't so much the snake itself that was worshiped but rather the symbolism behind the snake.

    Serpent in the Garden - Creation Museum, Kentucky
                   (Flickr. com - nofilmrequired)

From a biblical standpoint, the snake seems tainted because it was the form Satan took when he tempted Eve in the garden. Satan is even known as the “Serpent” or “Dragon”, in the Bible. So then are snakes evil like Satan is evil? No! Snakes are only created creatures whose image is used to symbolize certain ideas.

That being said, there is substantial proof for the existence of an evil cult-like worship of the serpent across the ancient world. This post will briefly describe the trail of this symbolic snake as it slithers through history.

How did Snake Worship Start?

Is this obsession with snakes really a worldwide thing? Consider how one author put it:

"No nations were so geographically remote, or so religiously discordant, but that one--and only one--superstitious characteristic was common to all; that the most civilized and the most barbarous bowed down with the same devotion to the same engrossing deity; and that this deity either was, or was represented by the same sacred serpent.”[2]

But what’s the source? Like everything else we can trace this back to a counterfeit that likely spread out from Babel.

Because Satan always perverts God’s truth, the biblical account of Eve and the serpent was twisted. [3] And the snake became a symbol of the one who brought secret knowledge of good and evil to man. The snake was also associated with sun worship, which seems to have emerged at the same time. The sun was worshiped as the one who brought physical enlightenment, and the snake as the one who brought spiritual light to man.[4] [5]

Therefore serpents in worldwide religions are commonly deities of the sun, fire (representative of the sun), sky, wisdom, civilization, regeneration, and healing. Some ancient cultures described comets as flaming serpents.[6] And because snakes shed their skin they are also associated with the regeneration of men's souls through fire or death.

Serpent Deities Around the World

There are far too many examples of serpent deities to compile a complete list, so we will just take a look at some of the most prominent serpents around the world.

      The Rainbow Serpent - (iansand, 2005)

The Rainbow Serpent - This is a deity found in both Australia and Africa, though more prominently in the former. The Rainbow Serpent is known by countless regional names and is credited with the creation of all life on earth. Shamans are ritually 'consumed' by the serpent and then emerge reborn so that they might gain spiritual power.[7]

Apep - This serpent deity originates in Egypt. It dwells in the “celestial Nile”, or the Milky Way. Other Egyptian serpent deities include Wadjet,Aker (an earth dragon), Am-Mut (eater of souls), Atum, and Denwen (another dragon).[8]

Lung - This is the basic name for the Chinese dragon or serpent deity. Chinese mythology claims there were four great dragon kings, and one serpent that had nine sons who did great deeds. Other Chinese serpent deities include: Chien Lung (the Great Serpent), Kung Shih (wisdom),Shen Lung (rain), and Nu Kua (the serpent mother goddess).[9]


Quetzalcoatl - Kulkulcan - Viracocha  - These three names all describe a similar feathered serpent deity from Aztec, Mayan, and Incan religion. This deity was credited with creation, the bringing of wisdom, and the founding of civilization.[10] These three deities, though symbolized as a serpent, also supposedly appeared to the native people as a white, bearded man in long robes from across the sea.[11]

Coatlicue - The Aztec serpent mother. This deity was known to the Inca asChalchiuhticue and to Brazillians as Iara. Serpent mothers and other mother goddess figures appear all over the world.

Other Mesoamerican snake deities include:

  • Aztec: Huitzilopotchili, Tezcatlipoca, Xiuhtecuhtli (fire serpent), and Mixcoatl.
  • Mayan: Gucumatz, Hunab Ku (sky serpent), LabnaTlactoc (rain serpent), Xiuhcoatl (fire serpent), and Youalcoatl (storm serpent)[12]

Avanyu - The feathered sky serpent of the Pueblo people was also associated with rain and lightning. Other North American serpent deities include: Uktena (Cherokee), the Horned Serpent (various tribes), andWinged Serpents (various tribes). [13]

Serpents were also venerated in the form of mounds (serpent-shaped mounds [effigies] exist in North America, England, and Scotland)[14]monuments, and innumerable pieces of artwork in the ancient world were also dedicated to the worship of the snake. 


This introduction certainly does not touch on every aspect or implication of serpent worship throughout the world. There are many intriguing connections that can still be explored.

  • How many cultures had a mother goddess?
  • What is the significance of the 'rebirth' rituals practiced by Australian and African Shamans?
  • What about those South American legends of white, bearded men from across the sea?
  • Why were some of the serpent deities called dragons? Maybe they were based on actual living creatures of the time?
Hopefully this introduction has opened doors for you to see more connections between cultures in the ancient world and more counterfeits as well. With serpent worship, or other related cults like sun worship, we're seeing evidence of man twisting created things into gods.

This passage written by the Apostle Paul applies well:

"...although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things....who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen." (Romans 1:21-23,25 NKJV)

What are your thoughts on this eerie serpent worship cult? Let us know your questions and opinions in the comments or send us an email! 

Interested in more? 

[1] “The Genius of Ancient Man”. Landis, Don. Chapter 9. Pg. 72.
[2] Clark, Hyde. Serpent And Siva Worship and Mythology in Central American, Africa, and Asia. And The Origin of Serpent Worship. Hyde Clarke, M.A.I., and C. Staniland Wake, M.A.I. 1877. Google Books.  pg vi-vii
[3]  “Snake Worship”. William T. Pelletier, Ph.D. 2008. BibleScienceGuy. Web.
[4]  “Nature Worship”. Pg. 287. The New International Encyclopedia, Volume 14. By Daniel Coit Gilman, Harry Thurston Peck, Frank Moore Colby.
[5] “Druids”. In Note, pg. 437. Owen, Davies
[6] “The Mystery of Serpent Worship”. Farra, Leonard. Web Article.
[7] Ibid.
[8] “List of Serpent Gods”. Web Discussion. 
[9] Ibid.
[10] Ibid.
[11]  “The Mystery of Serpent Worship”. Farra, Leonard. Web Article.
[12] Ibid.
[13] “The Reptilian Agenda: Horned Serpent, Feathered Serpent.”. Hidden Mysteries (1998-2005). Web.
[14] Ibid.

The Incredible Journey (Part 1)

Hello Everyone! Ready for another article from the Genius of Ancient Man Blog? This one was originally published on February 12th, 2014. I hope you enjoy the read. If you like this article, please visit the blog itself and read some of the articles from the other authors on the research team. You won't regret it! As always, please feel free to comment!

The Incredible Journey

By Bethany Youngblood

Wikimedia Commons
"So The Lord scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city. Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because The Lord did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the Lord scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth." (Genesis 11:8-9 KJV)

The Biblical account of the Tower of Babel is a familiar one. We know that it was at Babel that God divided the languages and thereby scattered the people in all directions to fill the earth and multiply. But we are not so familiar with the span of time between the dispersion and the many civilizations that were created by the migration from Babel. Evolutionary models for how man populated the globe are so common that when confronted with the question of how it happened from a biblical perspective and within a biblical timeframe, we often come up short for answers.

Does the mainstream theory of human dispersal across the globe align with what we know of ancient man? If not, then how did ancient man travel to all those distant corners of the earth? How long did it take? Is this incredible journey even possible within a Biblical timeframe?

Let Us Review

Very quickly, let us review what is commonly presented to us by mainstream science, and then what we know of ancient man from a biblical perspective, to see where we stand before this journey even begins.

The most widely taught idea in the secular world today is that we (Homo-sapiens) evolved in Africa and it was from Africa that we emerged to populate the globe over tens of thousands of years. Variations of that theory are taught as well but the conclusion remains roughly the same; over millennia our species evolved and crawled out of Africa, by chance, to become the dominant animal on this planet.

"Our species is an African one: Africa is where we first evolved, and where we have spent the majority of our time on Earth. The earliest fossils of recognizably modern Homo sapiens appear in the fossil Ethiopia around 200,000 years ago…this is our best understanding of when and approximately where we originated."[1]

The statement above is supported by an evolutionary interpretation of the fossil record as observed in Ethiopia, Africa. Since Africa is where secularists speculate humans evolved from apes, it is also where they speculate more modern humans emerged to begin populating the globe around 70,000 years ago. Therefore everyone on the planet is descended from this small group of pioneers.[2]

Projecting back to a common ancestor requires an assumption on who that was; it also requires an assumption on where that common ancestor was located. Dealing with the exact same evidence for the entirety of humanity coming from one father and one mother, evolutionists say it was a homo-sapien in Africa whereas biblical creationists say it was Adam and Eve. Or, more to the point, our common ancestors were the people that were scattered from Babel to populate the earth.

"And the LORD God formed man [of] the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul." (Genesis 2:7 KJV)

God created Adam and Eve as the crowning jewel of His creation. They were the first humans, with no sub-species or prototypes before them, and the father and mother of all human life on earth. The Ancient Man Team has worked to post quality articles on this blog pointing to the fundamental notion that ancient man was not the grunting ape he is so often painted as. For a more in-depth review of some fantastic things we know of ancient man, try reading some of these articles on ArcheoastronomyAncient Technology, and Ancient Art.

So, it turns out the mainstream evolutionary theories for how man populated the globe do not align with a biblical perspective of ancient man. Our ancestors were created with all the abilities and intelligence required to meet the challenges involved with something as incredible as populating and caring for the earth. Now our journey can begin.

Where Was Babel?

Where was the starting point? From where did ancient man scatter in all directions from? Where in the world was Babel?

The Bible says in Genesis 11:1-2 that Babel was located on a plain in Shinar, somewhere west of the land where Noah had settled after the Ark landed. Traditionally Shinar, meaning ‘between two rivers’, is located in southern Mesopotamia. This was the region of ancient Babylonia and Chaldea and of the modern country of Iraq.[3]

When did this scattering occur then? When did man leave Shinar and begin spreading out? One possible date presented by James Ussher (a biblical chronologist) is 2242 B.C. This would have been 100 years after the Flood.[4] Is it possible that man could have traveled to fill the whole globe within a few hundred years? Absolutely!

Which Way Did They Go?

Working off a combination of archaeological sciences, the routes that ancient man took to populate the earth can be roughly tracked. Of course, interpretation of the data affects where those routes started and ended, so there is no absolutely flawless version of ancient man’s migratory map. Now, when visualizing man on this incredible journey across the globe, remember that the landscape and climate was very different than what it is today.

Dispersion. (Drawn by Daniel Lewis of AiG-USA)

The major differences were caused by the worldwide ice age that was triggered by the Flood. It would have peaked around 400 years after Babel, corresponding well with the migration of peoples groups. Most creationists agree that there was ONE major Ice Age after the flood. It would have been caused by the warmer oceans and volcanic activity that released “aerosols” into the atmosphere, which blocked some of the sun’s heat. The warmer oceans would have caused more evaporation and more condensation of snow and ice due to the colder climate. Both creationists and evolutionists agree that the result of so much water in the form of snow and ice on land would have lowered the ocean levels 350-400 feet! (We will go into the amazing effects of that development a little later.) .[5]

  • Southwest - To the southwest of Shinar would be, what we know today as, Palestine and the continent of Africa. Due to the Ice Age causing cooler temperatures around the globe there would have been more precipitation around the equator, meaning the areas we know as deserts today would have been cooler and wetter. Even the Sahara would remain a fertile and hospitable place long after the Flood!
  • Southeast - To the Southeast would be present day India, Asia, and the Pacific Isles. Even with the mountain ranges and small stretches of ocean in the way of this route, it would have been an easier trip than the route up into the north.
  • Northwest - The same aftereffects of the Flood that made the south a tropical paradise made the north a harsh, cold landscape. As the Ice Age progressed the immigrants entering into Europe and Northern Asia would be met with the advancing ice sheets. Days were darker and spring and summer practically nonexistent, and yet, man still pressed onward.
  • Northeast- One more ice-crowded route that led ancient travelers east and northeast through Asia and Siberia would eventually turn into a highway that led to the Americas.

For details on HOW the ancient people travelled around the globe, read Part Two of this article.

[3] Hodge, Bodie. Tower of Babel. Green Forest: 2012. Master Books. pg.104
[4] Hodge, Bodie.
[5] Hodge, Bodie. Tower of Babel. Pg. 105-108

A Stone Canvas (Part 2)

Hello Everyone! It is Genius of Ancient Man day. Welcome to Part 2 of last week's article. This article was originally published on the Genius of Ancient Man Blog on December 4th, 2013. I hope you enjoy the read and please comment!

A Stone Canvas (Part 2)

By Bethany Youngblood

Now that you have been introduced to the concepts and purposes of ancient cave art (read Part 1 if you missed it!), we can begin our grand tour fully prepared to appreciate it. I’ve arranged what I consider to be the five most stunning works of ancient man’s artistic genius.

The Grand Tour

Cueva de las Manos ~ The Cave of Hands

Cueva de las Manos
Located in Argentina, this site is known for its panels of rock art hand paintings. The stenciled impression was probably accomplished by blowing the mineral pigment through a hollow tube around the hand. Most of the hands are left hands and average around the size of a 13-year-old boy. Experts speculate that, due to the hunting scenes also located at the site, that this was part of an initiation ceremony. They are dated to be around 9,000 years old according to a secular calendar. [1] From a Biblical worldview we can certainly say that this site was created Post-Flood, after mankind’s dispersion from Babel. A potential date range therefore falls between 2,000 and 1,000 BC.


Lascaux Cave 
This breath-taking complex of caves is located in southern France and is known primarily for the size, quality, and excellence of the almost 2,000 painted figures throughout it. Chamber names include; The Great Hall of Bulls, the Lateral Passage, the Shaft of the Dead Man, the Chamber of Engravings, the Painted Gallery, and the Chamber of Felines. Horses dominate the scene, numbering close to 364 individuals. There are ninety stags, multiple bison, a bear, a rhino, and a human.[2]

The Great Black Bull

But the stars of Lascaux are the bulls. Four huge black bulls appear to run across the stone walls. One measures seventeen feet long, the largest animal cave painting ever found. These painted bulls actually represent an extinct species of wild cattle called Aurochs. Aurochs were massive and reportedly bad-tempered. They were the basis for the Minoan legends of the Minotaur and used in the Minoan bull-leaping games.[3][4]

Take a virtual tour of this cave!

The Cave Chauvet-Pont-d’Arc

The Panel of Lions

This is another artistic marvel local to southern France. Like Lascaux, this cave is known for its’ exceptional quality. It sets itself apart though for the rare exhibition of predators and the artistic finesse throughout the cave.

Thirteen different animal species including horses, cattle, reindeer, bison, wooly rhinos, and owls are represented as well as predators like cave bears, panthers, hyenas, and a whole wall of lions painted in blue. No human figures have been discovered in this cave.[5]

Many caves in France feature something unique in the cave-art world and it’s found in both Chauvet and Lascaux; animation. Some animals appear to have been painted with multiple heads or several extra legs. But when explorers turned off their flashlights and brought a torch down into the dark the flickering shadows made the animals appear to move! An example of this effect can be seen in this video.

Narwala Gabarnmang

Narwala Gabarnmang 
This site in Australia’s Northern Territory has come to be known as the “Cistine Chapel of Rock Art Sites”. The carbon-dating used on these cave-paintings date its creation at roughly 33,000 years ago, the same as Chauvet and Lascaux.[6] Even though this dating system is flawed, it shocked historians because it elevated Aboriginal people, a group that has suffered harsh persecution in the past, right up there with some of the most advanced artists of ancient Europe. Should that surprise us? No! If you go from a Biblical perspective mankind could have reached Australia and created this work of art anywhere from 2100 to 1600 BC.

“All people, including Australian Aborigines, are descended from Noah’s family. After God confused the languages of people at the Tower of Babel, in the years following the global Flood of about 2350 BC, groups of people dispersed through the world. Each group surely possessed knowledge of some current technology in addition to their new language. Thus, we expect to see evidence of intelligent people scattered all over the world, including these paintings in Narwala Gabarnmang…..Aborigines were not at the head of the human evolutionary pack but were, like groups of people all over the world, using their intelligence and their skills to rebuild civilizations after the Flood and migration from Babel.” – Dr. Elisabeth Mitchell[7]

Ica Stones

Ica Stone showing dinosaurs
This example of ancient art is less cave-art and more of an amazing array of engravings. A flood in Peru in the first half of the 20th century eroded the side of a mountain away and revealed a cave were 16,000 stones like the two shown above were hidden. Dr. Javier Cabera displayed 11,000 of them in his small museum. The stones depict an array of figures but a significant number showcase dinosaurs.[8]

A huge controversy surrounds these stones for that very reason. Skeptics claim they’re an elaborate hoax because it is impossible for a human to have seen a living dinosaur according to their timeline. Hoaxes are an unfortunate reality for both evolutionists and creationists, so the authenticity of these stones is undecided. Still, they make an interesting place to end our tour for today.


We certainly hope you enjoyed this brief perusal of ancient art. Like any summary it hopefully showed you the highlights; ancient man was created with a creative and intelligent spirit like me and you, quite unlike what mainstream theories would have you believe. Men who temporarily dwelled in caves or used their walls as a sanctuary were not primitive but in fact demonstrated artistic genius in many areas. As a summary this tour also skimmed over the not-so God-honoring pieces of ancient man’s workmanship. Yet isn’t this just another reminder that ancient man was just as fallen and in need of a Savior as we? Take a moment to consider our modern artistic expression. Do we use our creativity to praise God, or do we instead paint worldly veneers over something made in God’s Own Image and dishonor Him?

Are there any examples of ancient art that you find incredible? Let us know! Share your thoughts and discoveries, we’d love to hear them.

Be sure and read Part 1 if you missed it! 

[1] Bradshaw Foundation
[3] “The Aurochs: Bull of Myth and Legend.” Erika.

[4] “Bull Mythology.”
[5] Bradshaw Foundation
[6] “News to Note, June 30, 2012” Dr. Elizabeth Mitchell.
[7] Ibid.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

A Stone Canvas (Part 1)

This article was originally posted on Wednesday,  November 27, 2013 on the the Genius of Ancient Man Blog. Enjoy and please comment or ask a question if you have one!

A Stone Canvas (Part 1)

 By Bethany Youngblood

Chauvet Cave

Mention “cave art”, and you’ve introduced the image of charcoal scrawls and odd looking stick-men into your listener’s head. This realm of primitive man cannot possibly hold any of the beauty or finesse we associate with the term ‘art’, can it? What is more, even if the doodles could be recognized as man or beast, would they have any commonality with our art today? The answer is a resounding yes! The realm of ancient artwork is a vast landscape rich in a variety of styles and purposes. To serve as an introduction to this beautiful chapter of ancient man we want to take you on a little art tour. We will start by focusing in on that first misconception at the beginning of this paragraph: cave art.

Canvas and Terms

Cave art is commonly defined as the work of Paleolithic man as represented by drawings and paintings on the walls of caves. (The term "Paleolithic" refers to an evolutionary stage of human development, characterized by creation and use of stone tools.[1] Paleolithic man was supposed to be a hunter-gatherer, but as we so often see, ancient man was not limited to this evolutionary definition.) So first off, why were caves the chosen canvas for our ancient artists?

It has been hammered into our heads that caves were the first dwelling places of primitive man. However, the Bible clearly states another version of history in Genesis 4:17
 “ And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bore Enoch. And he built a city, and called the name of the city after the name of his son—Enoch.” (NKJV) 
From the very beginning we had the capability as created, intelligent beings to craft homes for ourselves. Caves then fall under the category of temporary dwellings, or religious sanctuaries. Most experts lean towards the latter and that could be a leading reason for the cave art. However, ancient man may have created the art for social or even personal expression as well, just like any artist today. We will explore some specific examples later

There are three areas to cave-art:

  1. Paintings – Simple outlines (made of charcoal or mineral pigment) with no color fill, or ‘true paintings’ complete with outlines, color, and shading.
  2. Engravings – Shallow lines usually cut into soft limestone. They are sometimes superimposed on paintings and other times just the rough draft of a painting.
  3. Bas-Reliefs – Made of soft, pliable clay attached to the cave walls or the paintings themselves[2]

Just those brief definitions should clue you in that these artists were not dolts experimenting with finger-paint. They were fully-formed people like you and me, gifted by God with creative spirits and an appreciation for beauty.

Content Commonalities

Before we look at the paintings themselves some global commonalities should be noted. Around the world, spanning oceans, cultures, and languages, what were all the ancient men painting? Below is a breakdown of four main categories of commonalities, but many subcategories could be drawn from them.

1.     People – Representations of man in cave-art can be as simple as a hand-print  or as elaborate as a stylized ruler in costume. You will find that man does not often take the foreground in ancient artwork. Unless for hunting scenes, religious purposes, or sensual purposes.

2.     Venuses – Small clay statues, figurines, and paintings crafted in a female form. Sensuality appears to be their main purpose, as their features are always exaggerated in rather inappropriate ways.

3.     Animals – Prey animals like deer, bison, horses, and mammoth are the most common among cave art. They can star in hunting scenes or as individuals. Predators are rarer. What’s really exciting is some of the animals painted on the walls are extinct. There are even some dinosaurs to be seen!

4.     Geometric Signs – These are abstract, non-figurative shapes including; dots, zig-zags, triangles, spirals, and crosshatches. The Bradshaw Foundation has identified 26 symbols that appear repeatedly around the world and suggest the possibility that symbolic communication was a global happening. Find out more at the Bradshaw Foundation.

What's behind the art?

Was the purpose behind the majority of cave art religious ceremony or personal expression? The reality is, we cannot say for sure on an individual basis. As anyone who paints can tell you, only the artist really knows why he or she painted something. A majority tends to lean towards religious expression[3]. One writer has this to say:

“In my view — which I share with quite a number of predecessors — there is little doubt that these complex representations are deeply rooted in religious beliefs. The small population of humans descended from the occupants of the ark had a clear system of beliefs from the beginning since their ancestor Noah “walked with God” (Genesis 6: 9). But as they spread out and lost contact with each other, their religious inheritance may well have started to dilute, with priority given to more direct and pressing issues, like survival by multiplication, which was still a divine commandment: “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth” (Genesis 9:1).” – Author Unknown[4]

This could help explain the many Venus figurines and fertility images across the globe. The earth itself would eventually come to be seen as the greatest ‘mother’ in nature. And painting images of prey or predators in caves (mother-nature’s metaphorical womb) could have been the ritual before a hunt to assure success. Religious devolution continues from these common roots and takes form in the numerous religions we see today. 

What is painted on ancient cave walls, if for religious purposes, is nothing new in a world that constantly attempts to forget the reality of God and replace Him with a more convenient imitation.

"Professing to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures." (Romans 1:22-23)

Watch for next week's post where we will take you on a Grand Tour of some of the most spectacular ancient cave art in the world! 

[1] “An Overview of the Paleolithic.”