Skip to Main Content

Atlantis and the Cycles of Time

Prophecies, Traditions, and Occult Revelations

Published by Inner Traditions
Distributed by Simon & Schuster



Free shipping when you spend $40. Terms apply.

Buy from Other Retailers

About The Book

A comprehensive study of the major occult writings on Atlantis

• Fully examines the many occult teachings on Atlantis, including those from G. I. Gurdjieff, Madame Blavatsky, Julius Evola, Edgar Cayce, Fabre d’Olivet, and Dion Fortune

• Shows how these writings correlate with the concept of cyclical history, such as the Mayan calendar and 2012, the Age of Aquarius, and the four Yugas

• By a renowned scholar, author, editor, and translator of more than 30 books

Atlantis has held a perennial place in the collective imagination of humanity from ancient Greece onward. Many of the great minds of the occult and esoteric world wrote at length on their theories of Atlantis--about its high culture, its possible location, its ultimate demise, and their predictions of a return to Atlantean enlightenment or the downfall of modern society.

Beginning with a review of the rationalist writings on Atlantis--those that use geographic and geologic data to validate their theories--renowned scholar Joscelyn Godwin then analyzes and compares writings on Atlantis from many of the great occultists and esotericists of the 19th and 20th centuries, including Fabre d’Olivet, G. I. Gurdjieff, Guido von List, Julius Evola, Edgar Cayce, Dion Fortune, and René Guénon, whose writings often stem from deeper, metaphysical sources, such as sacred texts, prophecy, or paranormal communication. Seeking to unravel and explain the histories and interpretations of Atlantis and its kindred myths of Lemuria and Mu, the author shows how these different views go hand-in-hand with the concept of cyclical history, such as the Vedic system of the four Yugas, the Mayan calendar with its 2012 end-date, the theosophical system of root races, and the precession of the equinoxes. Venturing broader and deeper than any other book on Atlantis, this study also covers reincarnation, human evolution or devolution, the origins of race, and catastrophe theory.


Chapter Nine

Channeling in the New World

Our investigation of what the channels have to say about the origins of mankind, lost lands and races, cataclysms, and prehistoric high civilizations reveals a glaring lack of consensus. It also uncovers some of the entangled roots that feed these exotic growths.

Edgar Cayce

The gentle Edgar Cayce (1877-1945) was a fundamentalist when he began his trance channeling in 1901, and for a time he wrestled with doubts over what was speaking through him. He was more disconcerted still when the “Source” started talking about people’s past lives, a concept repugnant to Christian orthodoxy, but with the Source’s help he was able to reconcile even this with Biblical authority. Reincarnation also turned out to be his road to Atlantis.

When people consulted Cayce for readings, the Source often mentioned former incarnations that were responsible for, or at least explained, their present difficulties. Beginning in 1923, Cayce gave the first of around 2,500 life readings. Over the next twenty years, no fewer than 700 of these mentioned a former life in Atlantis. Nor were these vague references. Cayce’s son Edgar Evans, who was the subject of the first life reading, tabulates them according to whether the person lived at the period of the first, second, or third destruction.

Another path to Atlantis lay through Cayce’s lesser known work for patrons who used his readings for stock market investment, treasure hunting, and oil prospecting. In 1927 he himself went to Bimini on a hunt for buried gold, and a reading from that period identified the island as the location of a temple of the “Poseidians,” i.e. Atlanteans.

Finally in 1932, Cayce consented to give a series of thirteen readings specifically on the past. We begin by summarizing its version of anthropogenesis:

-The first ancestors of humanity were sexless spiritual entities, with the ability to project forms into the physical world.

-The physical world had already evolved as far as the animal kingdom. The spiritual entities, curious to experience physical life, projected physical forms that were monstrosities. This resulted in evolutionary chaos and alienation from God for the spiritual entities caught within those bodies.

-A being called Amilius (later identified as the Christ Consciousness) took matters in hand and projected a more suitable vehicle for spiritual entities to inhabit: the human one.

-Humans appeared on earth in five places simultaneously: the Yellow race in the Gobi, the White in the Carpathians, the Red in the Atlantean and American lands, the Brown in the Andes, and the Black in Africa. This occurred more than 10.5 million years ago.

One of the most impressive things about Cayce’s Atlantean dicta is their consistency. It enables his followers and scholars to collate readings from years apart and reconstruct a coherent history from them. Drawing on these, we continue:

-The five races were the “Sons of God” mentioned in the Bible. The “Daughters of Men” with whom they made the mistake of mating were the monstrous forms left from the early projections. The result was a race of hybrids.

-Early on in Atlantean civilization, a difference arose concerning these hybrids. One group, “Children of the Law of One,” wanted to keep the human race pure but help the hybrids regain their position as creatures of God. The other group, “Sons of Belial,” believed in sensual gratification alone and treated the hybrids as “things” or slaves.

-Atlantis became a great civilization with high technology, some of it in advance of our own. This included airships that could also become submarines, a “firestone” that gathered cosmic energy, and a crystal that used both solar and geothermal power.

-Lemuria, also called Mu, was a continent in the Pacific Ocean whose westernmost portion was the coast of South America. It disappeared before Atlantis in a series of cataclysms lasting 200,000 years.

-Atlantis itself disappeared in three separate cataclysms around 50,000 BC, 28,000 BC and 10,000 BC.

-The first of these followed the use of advanced technology for destructive purposes, in order to exterminate the enormous carnivorous animals that were overrunning the earth. These were the result of creations by the “sons of men,” who had lost control over them. God changed the poles and the animals were destroyed, along with part of Atlantis.

-The second destruction was preceded by struggles between the two factions. Followers of the Law of One emigrated to Peru, the Yucatan, Nevada, Colorado, the Pyrenees, and Egypt. The cataclysm of 28,000 BC was caused by misuse of the firestone by turning its power up too high. It was probably accompanied, again, by a pole shift and a change in climate.

-During the last period of Atlantis, Egypt reached a high level of civilization. The Pyramids and Sphinx were built around 10,500 BC by Ra Ta (a past incarnation of Cayce), levitating the stones through the application of occult laws.

-On Poseidia, the last remaining island, the two factions continued in strife, and the Sons of Belial instituted oppressive government. Some of the followers of the Law of One, seeing the coming cataclysm, escaped, making the first transatlantic flights as well as sailing to various safe lands.

-As its end approached, Atlantis was a morass of violence and depravity. Crystal power was used for coercion and torture. There was human sacrifice, and the hybrids were used for sexual purposes. The third and final destruction took place through gigantic land upheavals and was complete by 9500 BC.

Not many people were aware of Cayce’s Atlantean readings until the 1960s, when a wave of interest in alternative spiritualities drew attention to him. In 1940 his Source had said: “Poseidia will be among the first portions of Atlantis to rise again--expect it in ’68 and ’69--not so far away!” The discovery in 1968 of the “Bimini Road” seemed to fulfill the prophecy, and controversy continues over whether the underwater row of giant stone blocks is natural or manmade. Predictably, those studying Cayce’s readings divided into the debunkers and the true believers.

About The Author

Joscelyn Godwin was born in Kelmscott, Oxfordshire, England on January 16, 1945. He was educated as a chorister at Christ Church Cathedral School, Oxford, then at Radley College (Music Scholar), and Magdalene College, Cambridge (Music Scholar; B.A., 1965, Mus. B., 1966, M.A. 1969). Coming to the USA in 1966, he did graduate work in Musicology at Cornell University (Ph. D., 1969; dissertation: "The Music of Henry Cowell") and taught at Cleveland State University for two years before joining the Colgate University Music Department in 1971. He has taught at Colgate ever since.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Inner Traditions (November 18, 2010)
  • Length: 448 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781594772627

Browse Related Books

Raves and Reviews

“Scholarly, meticulously researched, and superbly presented. Joscelyn Godwin has produced a wonderful book that will delight and impress all those who seek ‘Atlantis,’ be it a myth or reality. I urge you to read it!”

– Robert Bauval, author of The Orion Mystery and Egypt Code

“In this important book Joscelyn Godwin has accomplished the nearly impossible, masterfully summarizing and synthesizing widely disparate approaches to the perennial question of Atlantis. Much more than a catalog of possible Atlantis locations, occult Atlantology is finally accorded the importance it deserves, including a cogent analysis of esoteric cycles of time, the Four World Ages, the Yuga Cycle, and the Precession of the Equinoxes, placing Atlantis in a larger temporal context. This is a must-read for anyone who wishes to truly understand the Atlantis debate.”

– Robert M. Schoch, Ph.D., author of Voyages of the Pyramid Builders and The Parapsychology Revolution

“As absorbing as it is erudite, both comprehensive and profound, essential as a reference work, and quintessential to grasp the depth and breadth of a grievously misunderstood, perennially fascinating, and perhaps critical subject, Atlantis and the Cycles of Time is a unique work: the ‘compleat’ Atlantis.”

– John Anthony West, author of Serpent in the Sky: The High Wisdom of Ancient Egypt

“From the sublime to the ludicrous, from the poetic to the simply mad, Joscelyn Godwin gives us a chart of the many versions of Atlantis (with all their ‘glaring lack of consensus’) that will last us till the lost continent rises again. Truly Godwin is the Master of Atlantis.”

– Peter Lamborn Wilson, coauthor of Atlantis Manifesto and Green Hermeticism: Alchemy & Ecology

“Godwin pulls together the many disparate topics associated with the myth of Atlantis from a number of sources and presents them in a well-organized, scholarly work. For serious students of history or anthropology only.”

– Susan Flaherty, Library Journal, January 2011

Atlantis and the Cycles of Time is one of the most extensive examinations of the Atlantis story and the themes it embodies ever published. Godwin's knowledge of esotericism, occultism and mysticism is encyclopedic and his ability to elucidate the strangest and most obscure cosmology is breathtaking. From the inners and outs of Blavatsky's Root Races to the quirky views of Germanic Atlantology it is all here in mind blowing detail.”

– Living Traditions Magazine, January 2011

“. . . an excellent work that gives us one of the first academic examinations of the theory of Atlantis throughout history. It is objective and critical, but sympathetic, and a truly challenging and stimulating read.”

– Robert Black, New Dawn Magazine, February 2011

“. . . reveals a fascinating story of the way in which the Atlantis myth has permeated almost every strand of mystical thinking in the West from the occultists of revolutionary France to the New Agers of Modern California.”

– John Rimmer, Magonia Blog, February 2011

“. . . Joscelyn Godwin. . .the eminent scholar of esotericism examines the continuing fascination of this myth and the surprising effect it has had on the Western world’s intellectual history.”

– Modern Mythology & The Eyeless Owl, April 2011

“Much has been written about the lost continents of Atlantis and Lemuria from an occult perspective as well from a rationalist view based on geographic and geological data, but these perspectives have not really been synthesized into a coherent whole. Scholar, translator and music professor Dr. Joscelyn Godwin applies his talents to reconciling the two.”

– New Dawn Magazine, May 2011

“The depth and breadth of the presentation amazed, and pleased, me. . . It should earn a place in your library.”

– Michael Gleason, Independent Reviewer, August 2011

“Godwin has produced a very useful resource for anyone interested in the myriad ideas about Atlantis.”

– Choice Reviews Online, November 2011

“Intelligent and written in a readable style that moves at a good pace, Atlantis and the Cycles of Time is a compelling exploration of the topic.”

– The Beacon Magazine

“...this is a richly rewarding and illuminating work of scholarship, a chronicle of modern Western essays in what Henry Corbin called ‘hierohistory’.”

– Temenos Academy, January 2013

Resources and Downloads

High Resolution Images

More books from this author: Joscelyn Godwin