This week’s guest is Bernie Taylor, whose novel interpretation of ancient cave paintings suggests an overlooked and deeply significant alternative take on the subjective experience and world-space of prehistoric human culture. Finding animals hidden in the interplay of paint and rock forms unnoticed by other archeologists, and corresponding with a diverse array of experts over decades (including legendary animal researcher George Gamow), he argues that these murals depict a heroic journey across continents, the crossing of the Iberian Peninsula, an ancient rite of passage coded in time and story that, if accepted by the scholarly community, would transform our understanding of our ancestors.

Bernie’s Website:

We Discuss:

• How Bernie noticed an entire parade of African and European animals in the El Castillo’s Cave of Disks that no one had seen before;

• The ancient animal versions of the constellations that became the modern ones (crocodile > Draco, great auk > Cygnus, etc.);

• The prehistoric origins of the Twelve Trials of Hercules and the origins of the monster from misinterpreted shamanic lore;

• Did the ancients really use cave art to track the precession of the equinoxes?

• How Bernie reconstructed the ancients’ mapping of the annual calendar to various animal life cycle markers and visible stars;

• Was the El Castillo mural testing for the ability to find hidden images – evidence of a shamanic apprentice’s ability to think differently?

• The role of neurodiversity in prehistoric AND modern human society, and how that may relate to the function, not dysfunction, of dyslexia and autism;

• How this initiatic journey is the earliest record we have of the heroic monomyth, which modern secular artists like Billy Joel continue to express even without knowing why these archetypes persist in human dream and story;

• What we might learn from these ancient stories, and the minds of those who made them, to inform our strategies for an(other) era of massive change on Earth;

“Modern art isn’t even modern art. It’s a recreation of paleolithic art.”

Future Fossils theme music: “God Detector” by Skytree (ft. Michael Garfield)

Additional music: “On Higher Ground” by Michael Garfield

originally posted here: