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Elongated Skulls: traditions in memory of ancient astronauts?

The disconcerting planetary phenomenon of the Elongated Skulls: traditions in memory of ancient astronauts?

Elongated Skulls: traditions in memory of ancient astronauts?
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All human groups on our planet have unique characteristics that define their culture: the clothes worn, the language, the customs and traditions that are transmitted from generation to generation. Each of these elements provides valuable information about a particular cultural group.

However, there are a number of cross-cutting customs that are practiced in every continent of the world. They include circumcision, burial rituals and skull deformation. These are traditions born in the distant past of humanity, so much so that their purpose and meaning are lost in the mists of time.

Cranial deformations were once believed to have originally developed in Egypt, then spread throughout the world. But researchers realized that this curious custom did not originate in an isolated geographic area, but arose among different cultural groups independently.

Some have come to hypothesize that the deformation of the skull is a transversal step inherent in the evolution of the culture of all human groups. Yet, it is an extremely deforming and painful practice: its goal is to lengthen a person's skull, a practice that once performed is no longer reversible.

Furthermore, unlike circumcision, once the practice has been performed it cannot be hidden. It is a permanently visible cultural marker that not only identifies membership in a particular group, but also indicates the individual's status within the group.

The practice began in neonatal age, when the bones of the skull are still soft and the structure is not yet fixed. The simplest method was to subject the skull to constant pressure, with bandages for example, or to massage the child's head every day, until the characteristic oblong shape was obtained. A second method involved attaching a mechanical device to the infant's skull which, over time, produced the desired elongated shape.

But why would a mother subject her son to such a painful and transfiguring procedure? Some archaeological finds show that cranial deformation was already in use in the Neolithic, around 10 thousand BC, although up until 5 thousand BC the practice appears to be episodic. This could be due to the small number of individuals subjected to deformation, or to the limited number of skulls found.

The earliest examples of the oldest elongated skulls were found in south-eastern Australia, at Coobool Creek and Kow Swamp. Surprisingly, some skulls from the same era have been found in Shanidar Cave in Iraq. A skull dating back to 7500 BC was recovered in the eastern highlands of Brazil.

Starting from 5 thousand BC, the tradition of deforming the skull seems to have expanded. The hypothesis is based on the large number of skulls recovered. Just 300 meters from the village of Onavas, in the southern part of the state of Sonora, Mexico, a collective burial consisting of 25 people was found, 13 of which have the strange deformation of the skull.

Elongated Skulls: traditions in memory of ancient astronauts?
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Five of the individuals with the cranial deformation also have a dental mutilation. These cultural practices are typical of the pre-Columbian populations found south of the state of Sinaloa and in the north of Nayarit, but represent an absolute novelty for Sonora.

Some skeletons feature ornaments made from shells and snails found in the Gulf of California region. These are bracelets, a nose ring, earrings, pendants and beaded necklaces. Additionally, one person was buried with a turtle shell placed at the abdomen.

Some researchers believe that the practice of elongation expanded as hunter-gatherer groups began to coalesce into urban environments. Humanoid figurines with elongated skulls begin to appear in archaeological finds, further confirming the antiquity of this custom.

Regardless of where they were found, most of the modified skulls present striking similarities: transverse grooves or depressions were observed on all skulls, clear signs that the elongation was the result of intentional manipulation and not the result of genetic or congenital problems.

Experts report two types of artificial cranial deformation: tabular or circumferential. The tabular modification involves compressing the front or back of the baby's skull. It is the most widespread type of deformation on the entire planet. At birth, the baby's skull is compressed between two boards, which flatten the baby's forehead. This type of modification causes the skull to expand laterally and backwards.

Garcilaso de la Vega, in a writing in 1609, explains the methods used by the inhabitants of some regions of Peru: "From birth, the skull of children is compressed between two boards tied together, which are tightened a little more each day. After three years, the skull is altered for life, so that the device can be removed.”

Circumferential changes, on the other hand, are performed by applying tight bandages around the skull, in order to force its vertical growth. This method reduces the diameter of the skull, pushing it upwards and backwards. Up to three bandages may be used to produce the conical shape of the head.

Investigations of cranial deformation around the world provide another interesting reflection: if the tradition of deformation originated in a single place and then spread throughout the world, one would expect to find the same shaping technique in large geographic areas. Instead, surprisingly, we find that both techniques were used within areas very close to each other.

In addition to physical manipulation of the skull. Researchers report other techniques adopted by many cultures to accentuate the elongated shape of the head. In some ethnic groups, hair was gathered and braided and placed in a container to accentuate the elongated shape of the head.

The same elongated headdress that adorns the heads of many pharaohs meets the same criteria. In Egypt, only the nobility were allowed to wear elongated headdresses, as a symbol of their high status. But ancient Egypt is not the only place where this custom is recorded.

Elongated gold headdresses have been discovered in Central Europe, some dating back to 1400 BC. Obviously, these are ornaments not used by ordinary men. Curiously, in ancient Greece when slaves were freed they were allowed to wear a pointed hat called a pileus, perhaps to indicate a higher social status.

In prehistoric rock art, characters are seen wearing curious pointed hats. And during birthday parties, even today, the birthday boy wears a pointed hat, to symbolize his importance. Could this tradition be a remnant of a forgotten past? Why do people all over the world have this symbolic practice in common?

Ethnologists hypothesized that an elongated head symbolized greater intelligence. However, it must be said that in ancient times the seat of intelligence was not always considered the head. In some cultures, such as the Jewish one, the seat of the intellect was the heart, for example.

It has also been hypothesized that the lengthening was motivated by an aesthetic criterion or by war motivations, making the individual's appearance more aggressive. It was then understood that the deformation of the skull had to do with the subdivision into social classes: in many cultures, a deformed head was an indicator of the high social class to which one belonged.

This aspect is also found in burials. The finds suggest that individuals with elongated skulls had some kind of higher status, deserving a more elaborate burial. The leader, and the members of his family, may present a greater deformation, while a priest or a shaman a less intense modification. Thus, the one who had the longest head was also the noblest.

Resemble the gods

It is unclear why intentional manipulation of the skull was adopted. However, it appears clear that it is not a response to some innate primordial impulse, but responds to a clear cultural tradition.

Elongated Skulls: traditions in memory of ancient astronauts?
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In some cultures it is said that the practice of cranial deformation was commanded by the gods who descended on Earth in ancient times. An ancient Polynesian tradition clearly informs us that this practice was taught to them by a group of light-skinned people whose home was in the sky.

In Central America there are similar stories, according to which the gods who descended from heaven commanded this practice to the ancestors of the Native Americans. In Peru it is said that the god Manco Capac ordered the deformations to be practiced so that their children would be weak, submissive and obedient.

However, it seems clear that this curious tradition was very important for our ancestors, so much so that they passed it down to the modern era, losing, however, its original meaning. True motivation is lost in the mists of time. Ethnologists believe that this is a practice accidentally invented by our ancestors.

But if you look at the phenomenon in its entirety, it seems much more likely that it was imposed by an external source, especially if you take into account the uniformity of methodology, tools and techniques used by cultures around the world. It is really difficult to accept that the practice has developed independently in all cultures of the world.

The French naturalist, Jean Louis Armand de Quatrefages de Bréau, in his 1889 writings stated that the extraordinary similarities between elongated skulls could not be traced back to autonomous origins or as an innate impulse in the human race. The finds, in his opinion, were proof of the existence of a unique culture spread globally in very remote times.

If this were true, who could have taught, and even imposed, the tradition of skull deformation on our ancestors? Could they have been the survivors of the great flood reported in the Bible, the so-called Ancient Humans descended from Atlantis? Or, could they have been members of an alien race visiting our planet, as Ancient Astronaut theorists believe?

At the moment, there is no convincing answer to how and why the curious tradition of cranial deformation was born, but certainly the discovery of new evidence and finds will lead to knowledge of its true origin.

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DrWatson's profile picture

And also in this article the legendary civilization of Atlantis is present!

12 May 2024
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