The ancient astronaut theory suggests that contact with intelligent extraterrestrials, early on in our history, influenced the development of our cultures, technologies, and religions.
Some proponents also suggest that we are descendants or creations of these alien race/races.
Science once told us that man, as we are today, descended from the ape kingdom, and that our closest living relatives on the evolutionary chain are chimpanzees. Today, however, we know itís a bit more complicated than that, for we know we are not directly descended from existing ape species, but have common ancestors with them.
The biggest mystery asked in evolution is how and why humans have evolved to become so varied. The Missing Link refers to the last common ancestor we have with chimpanzees. So far archaeology is yet to find fossil evidence of an animal that was ancestral to both chimpanzee and homosapiens. These ancestors are thought to have existed about 6 to 8 million years ago, and Darwin believed that archaeologists would eventually find this link in fossilised proof, confirming man was descended from apes.
Maybe we have not discovered this link due to the fact that perhaps, there is more than one ancestor, and also, perhaps, itís of an extra terrestrial source.
In 1968 a book emerged into publication called Chariots of the Gods, and 55 years later still courts controversy, ridicule and scepticism by the mainstream scientific community and lay-men alike. Its author, Erich Von Dšniken, would go on to write several more books and would cement himself as one of the main proponents of the Alien Astronaut Theory, an idea that extra terrestrial beings made contact with early man and helped shape and influence early civilisations.
Von Danikenís claims and works have been labelled pseudo science, pseudo history and pseudo archaeology. The general claims through these books are that Ancient Astronauts, visited Earth many millennia ago and helped early man evolve from the apes. It is also put forth that these entities helped humans construct great structures and monuments, such as the Pyramids in Egypt and the statues that are found on Easter Island.
Believers in this ideology would also argue that man was taught by these beings language and writing, agriculture, the arts, technology and social organisation, and that we were, perhaps for some time, slaves to these Gods, providing them with food, labor and perhaps even companionship.
Believe it or not, but there is evidence to support this theory. Apart from the structures mentioned earlier, that still today have an air of mystery surrounding their creation, there are ancient temples and buildings with pictures depicting early man possibly interacting with strange looking men, depictions of flying machines with men in them, and carvings of lines and objects in sand in southern Peru.
Also many ancient tribes, including the Mayans and Australian Aboriginals, had knowledge of astronomy, mathematics and geometry. A remote African tribe told two French explorers in 1931 that they had acquired their knowledge of astronomy from beings called the Nommo, that resembled fish and were here to watch over mankind.
Many ancient tribes and clans speak of men from the sky, who appeared and either guided and instructed them or caused destruction, mayhem and grief. Is it possible that perhaps humankind is descended from an ancestor that was genetically mixed, through laboratory experimentation or sexual breeding, with chimpanzees? Or perhaps there was/is more than one ancestor?
Could the fact that we have many cultures, languages and nationalities be because we are the product of breeding done by more than one species of extra-terrestrial visitors?
Could that also explain the many religions, myths, folklore and belief systems that exist?
Mainstream scientists and academics, as well as general sceptics, would call this fantastical nonsense or lunacy and even science fiction, and Von Daniken has, as many people before him and after, been criticised and critiqued. To his detriment, he has admitted that he has made up/fabricated a small portion of events experienced by himself to add more interest to his work.
So is a little embellishment to gain a little more publicity enough to discredit a whole theory?
The theory, Von Daniken and his works, as well as works by other proponents of this theory, continue today to be popular and are met by many with an open mind. However, more evidence is needed to further the notion and enlighten the scientific community.
Are we the result of an alien breeding experiment by colonies from other worlds?
If so, are they still around and continuing to help us evolve?
Are we ever to find evidence of this? Are there Missing Links, yet to be discovered by archaeology or palaeontology? Are we descendants from Gods?