From Atlantis to the Sphinx: Recovering the Lost Wisdom of the Ancient World by Colin Wilson is part of the collection at the Reading Room.
“Recent discoveries by Boston University geologist Robert Schoch of ancient water damage to the Sphinx have thrown the scientific world into tizzy, for they suggest that Egypt’s legendary monument might be thousands of years older than previously believed. In his astonishing new bestseller exploring the implications of these explosive new findings, Colin Wilson takes us on a grand tour of the knowledge amassed by researchers over the centuries to ask questions about mysteries that have puzzled humanity since Plato: Was there an ancient civilization destroyed by some great catastrophe whose survivors built the Sphinx some 10,500 years before Christ? Did it possess a knowledge system—science, astronomy, mathematics, passed on through descendants to Egypt and South America—that could move stones weighing thousands of tons with a technology which still baffles modern engineers? If so, who were these people who had developed a highly advanced culture and who traveled the world from China to the South Pole (then free from ice)? Were they really so unique in their thinking, as Wilson suggests, that, compared with modern man, they were as alien as Martians?
Via paleontology and ritual cannibalism, Wilson’s tour through time and space sets out to reconstruct that ancient knowledge. in a fascinating exploration of the remote depths of history, From Atlantis to the Sphinx takes us from the structure of the pyramids and the purpose of their tortuous interior shafts, to the prehistoric cities of America by way of ancient sea maps apparently showing the outlines of Antarctica before it was covered by ice. Along the way, Wilson visits the cave paintings of Cro-Magnon man, the Upper Amazon and the Gilbert islands, touching on Robert Graves’s The White Goddess and the I-Ching, on Gurdjieff and Abraham Maslow and the ultimate nature of human consciousness.” — flap copy