10) Sunken Continent
One of the most stringent clues on Plato's
Atlantis is that of a sunken continent "greater than Libya [North Africa]
and Asia [Minor] put together". In other words, Plato is speaking of something
like 5 to 10 million square kilometers, about the size of Brazil or the
USA. Now that is an enormous piece of real-estate, the size of a continent,
one that cannot be easily hidden away anywhere.
Where can this continental-sized region be hiding even today? Certainly not in the Atlantic Ocean, that has
been scrutinized (for military purposes) down to the metric scale by both the American and the Russian
oceanographic ships. The same is true of the Pacific
and the Indian Oceans which have also been thoroughly scanned. Hence, an
Atlantic Atlantis is an illusion that is to be found nowhere. So, is it
truly exists, it must be sought elsewhere.
It is an extremely interesting fact that Atlantologists
and apparently the oceanographers as well have been minutiously searching
the world's ocean so thoroughly that they forgot to seek in the exact spot
where Atlantis actually lies: the South China Sea. Strictly speaking, the South
China Sea that of Indonesia, to be sure lies between the Pacific and
the Indian Oceans. But it belongs to neither, and actually forms their divide.
This is the reason
why Indonesia was called Ultima Thule (that is, "Ultimate Divide") by the
ancients. Thule was considered "the Divide of the World" in antiquity, as it separated the Old from the New World. As the world is spherical, and closes upon itelf, its extremes touch each other. So, the Extremes of the World (Orient and Occident) are indeed coterminous, and are also at the center, the Center of the World. This is how the paradox of Thule and the Pillars of Hercules being both the ultimate extremity of the world and, simultaneously, its Center or Navel (Omphalos) should be ultimately understood. It is also thus that we must understand the paradox of Paradise lying both at the Extreme Occident and the Extreme Orient. For, beyond the Orient (the Far East) lies the Far Occident, the New World. The whole thing is rather obvious, a posteriori, when we pause to think it over.
The South China averages only about 50-60 meters
in depth. It is, hence, extremely shallow and dangerously filled with sandbars and coral reefs
that render navigation there extremely perilous, just as Plato affirmed
(see item 9 above). Thus, it is possible to understand precisely
what happened according to Plato. Geology has recent independently uncovered
this type of evidence as well.
During the Pleistocene Ice Age or, more
exactly, during the last Glacial Period so much water was retained in
the continental glaciers that sea level was lower by some 100-150 meters.
Hence, the shallow bottom of the South China Sea was completely exposed,
forming a vast expanse of continental dimensions.
It was this vast expanse that the Greeks
called Elysian Fields and the Egyptians named Sekhet Aaru (or "Field of
Reeds"). This marshy country is the one which later became the primordial
Sargasso Sea of the Indonesian region (9).
So, while it is true that "continents cannot
sink", it is also true that sea level can rise and flood entire continents,
as it did in the South China Sea. It is there that we must seek Atlantis
and Eden, as well as the Elysian Fields and the Isles of the Blest. It was also there that once lay the felicitous Paradise, the very cradle of Mankind and