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Lemuria (continent)

From Academic Kids

Lemuria is the name of a hypothetical Lost Land variously located in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. Its 19th century origins lie in the geological theory of catastrophism, but since then it has been adopted by Occult writers, as well as the Tamil people of India.

Accounts of Lemuria differ regarding most of its specifics. However, all share a common belief that the continent existed in pre-history but sank beneath the ocean as a result of geological change.

Scientists today regard sunken continents as physical impossibilities, given the Theory of Isostasy.

Contents

Scientific Origins

The name Lemuria was first coined in 1864 by the geologist Philip Sclater in an article titled "The Mammals of Madagascar" in The Quarterly Journal of Science. Puzzled by the presence of lemurs in both Madagascar and India, but not in Africa or the Middle East, Sclater proposed the two were once part of a larger continent, which he named Lemuria.

Sclater's theory was hardly unusual for his time. Many hypothetical submerged land bridges and continents were proposed during the 19th century, in order to account for the distribution of species. The rise of Darwinism led scientists to seek to trace the diffusion of species from their points of evolutionary origin, and (prior to the acceptance of continental drift) scientists frequently invented submerged land masses in order to account for populations of land-based species separated by barriers of water.

As Lemuria gained some acceptance within the scientific community, it frequently appeared in the works of other scholars. Ernst Haeckel, a German Darwinist, proposed Lemuria as an explanation for the absence of "missing link" fossil records. Locating the origins of the human species on this lost continent, he claimed the fossil record could not be found because it had sunk beneath the sea.

Other scientists hypothesized that Lemuria had extended across parts of both the Indian and Pacific oceans, explaining distributions of species across Asia and the Americas.

Blavatsky's Lemuria

Lemuria entered the lexicon of the Occult through the works of Madame Blavatsky, who claimed in the 1880s to have been shown an ancient, pre-Atlantean Book of Dzyan by the Mahatmas. Within Blavatsky's complex cosmology, Lemuria was occupied by a "Third Root Race," which was sexually hermaphroditical, mentally undeveloped and spiritually more pure than the current "Fifth Root Race."

After the subsequent creation of mammals, some Lemurians turned to bestiality. The gods, aghast at the behavior of these "mindless" men, sank Lemuria in to the ocean and created a "Fourth Root Race" (endowed with intellect) on Atlantis.

Lemuria and Mount Shasta

In 1894, Frederick Spencer Oliver published A Dweller on Two Planets, which claimed that survivors from a sunken continent called Lemuria were living in or on Mount Shasta in northern California. The Lemurians lived in a complex of tunnels beneath the mountain and occasionally were seen walking the surface dressed in white robes.

This belief has been repeated by such individuals as the cultist Guy Warren Ballard in the 1930s who formed the I AM Foundation.

Other Appearances

In a section of the late Mayan period Madrid Codex that is sometimes called the Troano Codex, fanciful archaeologists in the days before Mayan glyphs had been translated thought they were able to interpret illustrations as "records" of a continent in the Pacific, destroyed by volcanic activity. Supposedly, a similar legend has been translated from unspecified "Sanskrit tablets" that describe a continent called Rutas.

The continent of Mu imagined by Augustus Le Plongeon (1826–1908) and James Churchward is possibly a permutation of ideas about what Lemuria might have been.

Lemuria is also a mysterious fog-shrouded land in the Nintendo Game Boy Advance games Golden Sun and Golden Sun: The Lost Age. It also appears as Mu in the Super Nintendo Game Illusions of Gaia.

The metal band Bal-Sagoth makes references to Mu, Lemuria, and Atlantis in their fantasy lyrics and backstory.

Lemuria is also the name of a region of the online game Nationstates, formed by exiles from several other areas.

Kumari Kandam and Lemuria

Kumari Kandamhas often been compared and identified with Lemuria.

According to Tamil Tradition, the Dravidians originally came from a submerged island Kumarikhandam in the south of India. The Epics Shilappadikaram and Manimekhalai describe the submerged city of Puhar.

At Mahabalipuram, near Chennai, submerged ruins have been found in the ocean.

Lemuria and its connection to reptilian beings

In reptilian conspiracy literature, a sunken Pacific continent (usually styled as Lemuria or Mu) is sometimes posited as the homeland of a reptilian race of creatures, often identified with Dragons or Nagas. Various bits of myth and folklore are pointed to in support for this, such as the Cambodian Naga traditions. Modern claims of Australian aborigines sighting "dinosaur-like" creatures are also often viewed as evidence.

The earliest attestation of such notions in modern literature seems to have occured in the works of H.P. Blavatsky, notably in The Secret Doctrine (1888), where she writes of "Dragon-men" who once had a mighty civilization on a Lemurian continent, till their rampant use of black magic brought about the end of their civilization, and their continent sank. Blavatsky in turn claims to have gotten this information from The Book of Dzyan. However, many consider that Blavatsky invented the Book herself. Blavatsky believed that the terms "Dragon-men" or "Serpent-men" used to describe the Lemurian beings in the Book of Dzyan were symbolic, intended to symbolize their advanced knowledge and magical powers.

Another early occurance of the idea seems to be in the Alley Oop (1932) comic-strip, where lands named Moo and Lem (adapted from Mu and Lemuria respectively) are presented as dinosaur-infested lands.

See also

External links

de:Lemuria es:Lemuria he:למוריה

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