Tag Archives: dispilio tablet

How Did Civilization Start?

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Gobekli Tepe, “Potbelly Hill”

We’ve been talking a lot, lately, about how our civilization might suddenly and shockingly collapse–like, if the people don’t obey all the commands of the government–but I think a more interesting question is how civilization ever came to be.

Supposedly we were mere hunter-gatherers for untold thousands of years. Okay. Then how did we come to invent civilization? If it’s “wired in,” why did it take so long? And if it’s not, why did it ever get started at all?

“Potbelly Hill,” in Turkey, shocked scientists with its great age, apparently some ten thousand years old, if not more. Monumental sculpture, well-constructed stone walls–all before the appropriate tools, supposedly, were invented. And then the people who used it… buried it, which preserved it from the elements and allowed us to dig it up again. We don’t know who they were, why they built it, how they built it, or why they buried it.

There are other sites almost as old–Jericho, Catal Huyuk, just to name two–where it seems civilization was well on its way to emerging from a primitive culture. We are badly hampered by a lack of inscriptions at those sites. Not that we could read them, if we had them.

The Bible teaches us that God twice overthrew civilization in our world: once by Noah’s Flood, and again by confounding their language when men tried to build a great tower reaching up to heaven. Reputable Bible Scholars Inc. tell us these are only fables, none of it ever really happened. Like they know.

But what if sites like Potbelly Hill, Jericho, and Catal Huyuk, and baffling remnants like the Dispilio Tablet and the Vinca Alphabet–both of them way too old to be writing, but there they are–what if these are not evidence of civilization emerging, but of civilization re-emerging from first destruction, then confusion? What if these are evidence of people trying to claw their way back to a way of life known to their ancestors but imperfectly remembered?

If our own civilization were utterly destroyed, how long would it take the survivors and their descendants to rebuild? How much knowledge and know-how, in the meantime, would be lost to them? And very much would depend on who survived: it isn’t everybody who knows how things work, or can explain it to others. And as the centuries roll on, so much of what people used to know gets lost. How much got lost without leaving a trace of it for us to study?

The earth is the Lord’s, and we are made in His image. We have the capacity to create a civilization. Scripture tells us we abused it and were punished for that.

As we discover older and older evidence of nameless, forgotten, extinct civilizations, is it wise to write off the Bible? Because it stores information that we, with our limited knowledge of the past, refuse to recognize as information?

Someday God will say to us, “I told you, but you wouldn’t listen.”

‘World’s Oldest Writing–and We Can’t Read It’ (2015)

I’m fascinated by the origins of civilization. If it’s “wired in,” why did it take so long to come along–or did it? The Bible hints that it didn’t take so very long. But if it’s not wired in, then why did it ever arise at all?

Anyway, here’s some writing that was carved into a piece of wood at least a millenium before anyone in Mesopotamia ever thought of writing on clay. Don’t you wish we could know what it says?


World’s Oldest Writing–and We Can’t Read It

Here it is–the world’s oldest writing… that we know about, so far. See if you can decode the secret message.

I hope you don’t mind taking a little break from watching our secular pin-head civilization destroy itself.

When was writing invented? Back when they used to teach such things in school, we were told that the ancient Sumerians invented writing, possibly as long ago as 4,000 B.C. Egyptian hieroglyphics came along shortly afterward.

In 1993, archaeologists in northern Greece dredged up a piece of wood from the bottom of a lake. The wood was carved all over with writing. Preserved in the oxygen-free environment under a layer of mud, the artifact was carbon-dated to circa 5,200 B.C. ( http://www.ancient-origins.net/ancient-writings-ancient-places-europe/dispilio-tablet-oldest-known-written-text-00913 )

Did you know that? I didn’t, and I try to keep close track of such things. This piece of wood, now called the Dispilio Tablet, is far and away the oldest known sample of writing. But of course we have no idea what it says. An unknown language written in an unknown script cannot be deciphered, as the saying goes. But we might have a slim chance of someday cracking the code, if the unknown language of the Dispilio Tablet is related to ancient Greek. For the time being, though, we have no way of reading it.

Funny things are going on in prehistory, these days. There’s the Potbelly Hill site in Turkey, where a vast, sophisticated temple complex, complete with nicely-executed sculpture in the round, was apparently in operation around 10,000 B.C (see https://leeduigon.com/2013/01/10/an-archeological-enigma-potbelly-hill/ ). And now the advent of writing has been pushed back over a thousand years.

If this keeps up, we’re going to run out of room in history for primitive, know-nothing cavemen.

Although we can always find their like in some of our more expensive public schools.

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