Friday, December 28, 2018

Does The Story Of The Destruction Of The City of Sodom Reflect A Meteor Strike?

There are really three pieces of this hypothesis. One is the identification of Tall el-Hammam in the modern country of Jordon with the Biblical city of Sodom. The second is whether there are indications of a meteor strike there in a Bronze Age or Iron Age time frame when a city existed there. While not irrefutable, the hypothesis seems plausible. I will try to track down a journal article on the hypothesis at some point.
In November 2018, Phillip Silvia, Ph.D of Trinity Southwest University in New Mexico, made a presentation to the American Schools of Oriental Research in which he put forth the theory that the ancient city of Sodom was destroyed by a giant meteor. . . . In Genesis 19, God sends his angels to destroy the city. . . . He posits that a meteor exploded in the air above the Middle East and created a circle-shaped plain on the northeastern edge of the Dead Sea, an area called Middle Ghor, in today’s Jordan. 
According to Silvia, the area of Middle Ghor had been settled for about 2,500 years before the Bronze Age (2000-500 BC). Excavations carried out in the area at five different sites illustrate this. Another further 120 sites have been surveyed in the area. He and others of his team believe that the Middle Ghor region was the home of the ancient city (or city-state) of Sodom. 
The most telling archaeological feature of the area are the ruins of the city of Tall el-Hammam. Silvia and colleagues led by Dr. Steven Collins, have been excavating the site for 13 years, and what they have found, they say, indicates evidence of a gigantic low-altitude airburst meteor of the Chelyabinsk/Tunguska type. 
As evidence that the site was Sodom, they say they have found pottery shards depicting sexual relations between men and boys. Tall el-Hammam is also the largest city of the region, and in the Bible, Sodom is one of the “cities of the plain” mentioned by name. 
. . . 
Tall el-Hammam covers one hundred acres. Jericho covered ten. Ancient Jerusalem ten as well. The Bible says that Sodom had a large defensive wall, and Tall el-Hammam has one made up of an estimated 60-90 million bricks: eight meters thick at the top, forty at the bottom. 
Geological descriptions and words found in the Bible match Tall el-Hammam. The location was abandoned for about 700 years, in the middle of one of the centers of world civilization at the time, and a fertile one, at that. This suggests, says Silvia and his colleagues, that people were sufficiently awed by what happened that they stayed away for centuries. 
What could have awed them, and what could have turned (as the Bible says), Lot’s wife into a “pillar of salt,” and caused a flaming vortex such as that mentioned in Genesis 19? A huge meteor. 
The pottery mentioned above? The outer parts are turned into glass. The rock walls disappeared suddenly 3,700 years ago, according to carbon dating of their foundations, the only parts left. Lot’s family would have made their way along the shore of the Dead Sea, one of the saltiest bodies of water in the world. 
They were under instructions from God’s angels not to look back at the city unless they wanted to be turned into “pillars of salt.” 
Should Lot’s wife have had second thoughts, or should her “look back” have amounted to more than just a peek (perhaps a long stop to make sure she was making the right decision, looking back to get one more glimpse of home for her memory, or just out of curiosity), and if that is the case and the meteor exploded over the Dead Sea, she might indeed have been covered in boiling salt water, or gas. 
If some of the sea breached its shores as a result of the explosion, salt would have covered the entire landscape – making it uninhabitable. 
Further scientific research indicates that the topsoil near Tall el-Hammam shows that the topsoil of the time was severely disrupted and that the subsoil revealed below was contaminated with salt, making the land decidedly sterile. This could have been another reason people stayed away for so long.
From here.


neo said...

ever heard of the jesus myth theory?

DDeden said...

Very interesting.

OT: re. The Chadic R1b-V88 herders, I wonder if there is any link to Germa, Libya Garamontes. Sounds close to "German", might the Goths have been trying to reunite with them after invading Rome? Probably just coincidence.


Salt traders (Ghirza, Mausoleum South C)

The Greek researcher Herodotus of Halicarnassus (fifth century BCE) describes the country as follows:

Salt traders (Ghirza, Mausoleum South C)
There is a hill of salt, a spring, and a great number of fruit-bearing date-palms, and the men who dwell here are called the Garamantes, a very great nation, who carry [humid] earth to lay over the salt and then sow crops. ... Among them also are produced the cattle which feed backwards, because they have their horns bent down forwards, and ... cannot go forwards as they feed, because the horns would run into the ground. Except for this, and the firmness of their hide, they do not differ from other cattle. With their four-horse chariots, these Garamantes hunt the Cave-dwelling Ethiopians, who are the swiftest of foot of all men.

andrew said...

@neo Many of them. Which one?

@DDeden Interesting stuff. Not sure what to make of it.

neo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
neo said...

i think its modern variants can be traced to GA Wells and Earl Doherty.

do you think jesus existed or do you believe in jesus myth, as its one of the most popular debate topics on atheist forums

neo said...

comment i deleted, i point out that the popular press AND new scientist latest issue is about white holes of LQG as stated by carlo rovelli

planck mass white holes (about a microgram) as dark matter.

white holes exist as time reversed solutions of black holes, and are allowed by LQG.

what do you think of white holes and LQG's treatment and papers on the subject?

DDeden said...

Comment at

Re. Chadic people

(1) There is no difference between Teda and Daza other than politics. No Daza will tell you they are NOT Toubou. In fact, a Daza will argue with you or fight you if you suggest that they are not.

(2) Both Teda and Daza are Gourane. Gourane is Chad Arabic for "Garamante"

andrew said...

"do you think jesus existed or do you believe in jesus myth, as its one of the most popular debate topics on atheist forums"

Don't know. Don't especially care. St. Paul definitely existed and never claimed to have met Jesus outside of his dreams and visions. Any historical Jesus would have to be non-"magical" of course. One of the more plausible possibilities is that Jesus was put forwards by monarchists as a legitimate heir to the kingship of the Jewish people (which makes his execution by Roman authorities make much more sense), and that a lot of the supernatural materials and parables were drawn from standard hagiography flourishes and by drawing of a collection of cultural wisdom and proverbs that had been collected in the intertestementary period. It isn't clear if any historical figure claimed to be a exorcist. Some of the key language in a Christian fashion about being a son of God can be interpreted in a non-literal fashion as well.

andrew said...

"what do you think of white holes and LQG's treatment and papers on the subject?"

I very much doubt that white holes exist. To the extent that they are a solution, they are a non-physical one, like tachyons in GR and SR.

andrew said...

"Re. Chadic people"

Also quite interesting. I'll have to look into it.

andrew said...

More on St. Paul. He is really the operational founder of non-Jewish Christianity, the only branch that survived. So, his lack of a personal connection is particularly notable.