Who Remembers Lemuria?

Copyright © 2003, Wm. Michael Mott

Ancient Lemuria has long been a regular feature in fantasy and science fiction, including Richard S. Shaver's I REMEMBER LEMURIA, and continued through the work of a number of writers. Lin Carter's Conan-wannabee Thongor of Lemuria, featured in pastiche novels which were reminiscent of the work of both Robert E. Howard and Edgar Rice Burroughs, comes to mind; and Howard himself worked the mysterious Lemuria into his Hyborian Age prehistory, naming them as ancestors of the peoples of the Far East, their culture the remnants of one that preceded the rise of mankind.

The name "Lemuria" was actually invented by an English zoologist, Phillip L. Schlater, back in the early days of Darwinism, in order to explain the fossilized remains of lemurs similar to those that live in Madagascar only today. He proposed the existence of an antediluvian land-bridge or landmass between Madagascar and the Indian subcontinent, and he dubbed this hypothetical continent Lemuria. It may or may not have existed, but it certainly was not the "Lemuria" or Mu of modern-day mystical and new age thought! This was created later by input from a variety of sources. One source was Madame Helena Blavatsky, who was renowned as a charaltan and caught in the act of perpetrating a fraud more than once. Blavatsky used the scientific concept of Lemuria to create her own cosmology and pseudo-theology from blending elements from a dozen religious and mystical traditions, folklore, and science, calling it "theosophy." The other source of the Mu and Lemuria myth was James Churchward, who provided evidence which was both archaeologically excellent and convincing, or else highly subjective and spurious at best.

Blavatsky was something of a "fake," and she did have a reputation as a con-artist extraordinare. She is the one who came up with the "story" about Atlantis and Lemuria going to war and destroying one another. This fiction (and it is fiction) of hers was picked up later by Edgar Cayce and others, who have all put their own "spin" on it. Again, this tends to cloud any reality to the situation of ancient, perhaps submerged civilizations, and tends to cause the topic to not be taken seriously--When it probably deserves to be taken very seriously, as recent find of ancient ruins under the world's oceans (the Cuban ruins and the Yonaguni site, and others) demonstrates.

The best research done on the possibility of a missing Pacific civilization has been done, in my opinion, by author and "rogue archaeologist" David Hatcher Childress. Childress sticks to the facts; he conducts in-depth research and verifies everything, and does the field work that an archaeologist has to do. Polynesians tend to remember this ancient civilization as "Mu," or as variants of the name. By chance the name Mu is included in the fabricated word LeMUria, but this is purely coincidental, unless the ancient civilization at hand was founded by time- travelling highly-evolved Lemurs who gave it their name from the future--highly unlikely.

Given the various interpretations of "Lemurian" activity around Mt. Shasta (which I'm not saying does or doesn't occur), I find it interesting to note that to the ancient Romans, the "Lemurs" were the savage ghosts of the unhappy dead, and had to be placated with a yearly ritual called, coincidentally again, "Lemuria".

Britannica.com says:

"Lemures also called Larvae, in Roman religion, wicked and fearsome spectres of the dead. Appearing in grotesque and terrifying forms, they were said to haunt their living relatives and cause them injury. To propitiate these ghosts and keep them from the household, ritual observances called Lemuria were held yearly on May 9, 11, and 13. These Lemuria, reputedly instituted by Romulus in expiation of his brother's murder, required the father of every family to rise at midnight, purify his hands, toss black beans for the spirits to gather, and recite entreaties for the spirits' departure."

My problem is not really with the Shasta phenomena per se, but simply with the use of wholly subjective channeled or astral- travel-obtained information about the unknown, which is often cited as "evidence," particularly when there is no external evidence which supplies verification. This has often been the only source of "esoteric" information about "Lemuria" in general.

Maurice Doreal (Claude Doggins by birth) began teaching, or preaching, a variant of the current theory as expounded by Branton, David Icke, and others, in the mid-nineteen-forties. He spoke about an ancient race of lizard or serpent humanoids with advanced technology, representatives of which were preserved in "Rainbow City," a hidden metropolis somewhere in Antarctica. He also propagated a mythos about Mt. Shasta, and wrote a book called "The Mysteries of Mt. Shasta." His ancient history of the world included blue-eyed, blond-haired Aryan superhumans who came from Mars to Earth, and who warred with the Serpent Race. The two groups (according to Doreal) eventually nearly destroyed one another with terrible weapons, and then fled underground for survival. Their descendants, according to Doreal, are at war with one another to this day, and he somehow managed to tie this all in with the deros and teros of Shaver's "mystery."

Of course we have to ask: Why would the "Lemurians" call themselves by a name which was not invented until the first half of the 19th century by an English scientist? Unless of course they were naming their country after the much-later Roman holiday of unfriendly dead who must be appeased--but Why? The very fact that they are called "Lemurians," or allegedly refer to themselves in this manner, demonstrates that modern or contemporary human beings are probably responsible for many of the mysterious phenomena at Mt. Shasta, such as the "music," the "ohming," strange lights, sudden visits by people who "disappear" (usually into woods or brush, btw), and so on. I have to wonder if, in the interest of making new age tourist dollars, there isn't some degree of chicanery going on at Mt. Shasta, propagating the myth of ufo-piloting "Lemurians" living beneath the mountain.

It is interesting that this name Lemuria has attached itself, in both antiquity and the present day, to some sort of supernatural, paranormal, ufological, and spectral activity.