Crystal Skulls Continue
To Baffle Science
At the beginning of this century people were debating over whether the Cottingley fairies were real or not - now almost one hundred years later we're asking the same question about crystal skulls.
According to old Native American legend thirteen crystal skulls exist, the size of human skulls with movable jaws, that are said to speak or sing.
Supposedly delivered by ancient ancestors from the star cluster Plaides or aliens if some twists on the story be believed, the skulls are said to hold important data on the origins, purpose and destiny of mankind.
The ancient Mayan civilization, whose luxurious empire created in the depths of the Central American forests crumbled mysteriously more than 1,000 years ago, believed that in the 21st century - in the year 2,012 to be exact - all the skulls would be reunited and their ancestors would return.
What form they were supposed to take was unclear, but UFO hunters are adamant they will be beings from another planet.
Chris Morton and Ceri Louise Thomas who have just released a book aptly entitled The Mystery of the Crystal Skulls have done extensive research into the skulls on several continents and remain open-minded. "There are a lot of alien theories going around as with all mysteries, but I'm very open on it," says Morton.
Thomas claims that without doubt the skulls they have tracked down have a strong powerful force. "They provide you with a very different way of looking a the world, but how that can manifest itself is another question," she says.
In true Indiana Jones style, the first crystal skull was found by a young British girl, Anna Mitchell-Hedges as she explored an ancient Mayan ruin with her father in the 1920s. Its existence has bemused archeologists ever since. Some say it is an original - others a fake.
Morton and Thomas tracked Mitchell-Hedges, now 88 and living in Canada. She is adamant that the skull is real. Since her father's death she has kept the skull in her house and occasionally let visitors see it and use its powers, notably the top Canadian psychic Carol Wilson who often works with the Toronto Police on murder cases.
Morton and Thomas examined the Mitchell-Hedges skull and say its transparency was remarkable. "It was like a transparent image of death," explains Morton. "It was as though you could walk through it, almost telling us death is something we can transcend."
Morton and Thomas were determined to find out the truth behind the crystal skulls.
They approached scientists at Hewlett-Packard who had tested a skull. Their findings were stunning, says Morton. "It was impossible to put a date on the skull as it is made of quartz crystal, which doesn't corrode, erode, decay or change with time." he explains. "They also discovered that it had piezo-electric properties which means it can also generate electricity.
Further tests show that the skull and jaw were once one enormous piece of crystal. Still more bizarre was the fact they couldn't work out how anyone could carve it with modern tools, let alone those available to the ancient Mayan.
"They put the nearest effort to an astonishing 300 man years to create a crystal skull," explains Thomas. "More bizarre was the fact that it was made from the same crystal used in technology today." explains Morton. "Why had our ancestors used the same quartz that we depend on for our growing technological and computerised age?"
Despite ruling out an alien delivery, Hewlett-Packard's scientists couldn't answer the question.
"They were baffled," says Thomas. "As far as they were concerned it shouldn't exist."
Surprisingly, however, Hewlett-Packard didn't rule out the fact that a natural quartz crystal could be programmed to store information in much the same way as a silicon crystal chip in computers today.
Some, such as crystal researcher Mike Dorland, believe that the "communication age" in which we now live should be re-christened "the crystal age" because we are only just realising how we can harness its powers.
Dorland suggests that if it is possible to programme the skull with data, then a skull could well store thoughts, messages and instructions from our ancient ancestors.
His theories are, as you'd expect, still very much open to debate. Morton and Thomas approached the British Museum who were willing to test as many crystal skulls they could get their hands on, including their own Smithsonian skull.
"Although there are only supposed to be 13 there are lots of fakes around, explains Morton. "We found someone carving them in Germany and selling them for l50,000 and the jaw wasn't even detachable!"
The British Museum agreed with Hewlett-Packard and felt the only way the crystal could be vaguely dated would be to check for tool marks. They were especially looking for signs that they may have been created with a jeweller wheel or European technology, which first appeared in the fourteenth century.
The Museum carried out extensive tests on the skulls. Disappointingly, its own skull was found to have traces of wheel marks dating to after 1492 when the Europeans arrived in Central America.
The Museum discovered two other skulls to be fakes, but on the further two said they had been "given strict orders not to comment". Had they found out something they didn't want the public to know? Had they, like Hewlett-Packard, found it impossible to explain how they were made on this planet? Was the Museum bitter because its skull turned out to be "post Columbian"?
"The Museum failed to give us any answers," sigh Morton and Thomas. "To this day we don't know why."
New World
In a change of direction the pair went to visit Don Alejandro Cirilio Oxlaj Peres, a Mayan priest and direct descendent of the ancient Mayans, in Guatemala. They asked him for his views on the crystal skulls. Through an interpreter he explained they were not made by humans, but by beings from another dimension, another planet. Peres believes the skulls are collecting up to help us with our "new world" which begins on 21 December 2012.
Perhaps a better explanation comes from Leon Secatero, spiritual leader of the Canoncito Indians. Already he sees technology accelerating too fast for our own good. He pointed to the Internet, increased world travel and playing with our own genetics. "He basically said we were in danger of becoming slaves to our own machines and ultimately technology would live and feed off us." explains Morton. "In a nutshell we are moving too fast for our souls."
Wherever the crystal skulls came from Morton and Thomas now believe they have a serious message to give us. "Perhaps we will listen and help change our planet before it is too late." says Morton.
Sceptics still believe it is a hoax, reminiscent of the cut out paper dolls in the Cottingley Fairy photographs. Whatever the outcome, the crystal skulls are going to carry profound ramifications way beyond their creators intentions.