In episode five we outline the "Because Pyramids" hypothesis, which, in brief, posits that all of western civilization exists because around 6,000 years ago some dudes in buttflaps found giant stone triangles in the desert.
Keeping with the subject of ancient Egypt, we talk about the Book of the Dead and how the Egyptians seemed to have made a science out of investigating the afterlife, building a picture of the various trials and tests a human soul must face and pass after death in order to achieve ascension to the stars. Because of the 2-D nature of Egyptian illustration, Russ associates the depictions in the Book of the Dead with oldschool 2d "platform jumper" videogames, which totally ruins the whole "spiritual enlightenment" thing.
We also touch on the extraordinary nature of the so-called "air shafts" in the Great Pyramid, and specifically the "Queen's Chamber" shafts and the "door" discovered by Gantenbrink, which Zahi Hawass penetrated on live TV ten years later, and the strange, faint marks on the floor of the shaft beyond the door.
This show is almost entirely focused on ancient Egypt. Enjoy!
Book of the Dead. If this was a videogame strategy guide, this would be the creatures list.
Translation: Show up in a boat. Bring people with sun hats. Use the sun hats to build a Sputnik. When the birds come to steal the sun, stand beneath it and pretend it's a hat to confuse them. Do not give high fives to anyone sitting on a table.
The Weighing of the Heart, from the Book of the Dead. That Feather of Truth better have some heft to it.
A side scrolling platform jumper game. See the resemblance? Look, there's even pyramids and mummies.
Queen's chamber. Air shaft opening on left.
King's chamber. Air shaft opening on right.
How the air shafts were formed
Structure of the shafts through the layers of the pyramid blocks. Note the locking blocks, labeled D, below...these keep the entire shaft structure from sliding down into the chambers.
The "door", as Gantenbrink found it
The door being penetrated ten years later
Some of the symbols found beyond the door
Manuscript 512. Note large, annoying worm-eaten area near top.
Some of the symbols from Manuscript 512