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The Legend of Atlantis
All unsolved mysteries start with a legendary tale. The Lost City of Atlantis is a tantalizing story about a legendary “lost” nation holding the ultimate wisdom on reaching utopia. This mythical continent has been intriguing philosophers, historians, dreamers, and occultists for nearly 2,400 years. Unlike many legends whose origins have been lost in time, we know exactly where and when the story of Atlantis first appeared. It was first told in two of Plato’s dialogues, the Timaeus and the Critias. Plato describes Atlantis as a powerful and sophisticated kingdom that “disappeared beneath the sea” around 9,600 B.C. He revealed that the story of Atlantis was brought to Greece through the famous lawmaker Solom, who was an alleged ancestor of Plato. Solom received this information by talking to Egyptian priests who claimed they had access to records about Atlantis written on pillars inside a temple. The ancient Greeks were divided as to whether Plato’s story was to be taken as history or mere metaphor.
Time passed and for nearly two thousand years, no one thought much about Atlantis. It was just what it appeared to be: a work of fiction mentioned in a fable by an ancient Greek philosopher. The idea that Atlantis was an actual lost geographical location is a relatively recent idea. It was first proposed 1882 by writer Ignatius Donnelly in his pseudoscientific book. Essentially, he believed that ancient cultures weren't advanced enough to develop on their own, and that all their knowledge had come from some unknown advanced civilization – Atlantis. From then on, people started searching for this lost land, including islands in the Mediterranean, Gibraltar, the North Atlantic, and our island of Bimini. How did Bimini, a world away from Plato’s ancient Greek reality, become the new focus of this legendary tale? The story is more prophetic than you can imagine and still has archaeologists, geologists, and mystics debating the issue to this day.
Visions of the Lost City in Bimini
It all started in the 1930s when Edgar Cayce, one of the most prolific prophets in modern history, reported that he had made psychic contact with a person who had lived in the Lost City of Atlantis. This Atlantean told Cayce that Atlantis had been near Bimini and gave very specific details on its discovery, history, and destruction. Cayce stated that Atlantis was the “first” civilization, being technologically superior to even our own modern day advancements. The supposed Atlanteans harnessed power of the quantum world through crystals and were adept in the use of lasers and memory chips. Cayce revealed the eventual collapse of their culture was due to wars surrounding the exploitation of natural resources. Eventually, the legendary land, that had once been the size of Eurasia, divided into islands which disappeared under the Atlantic Ocean some ten thousand years ago. Cayce predicted that remnants of Atlantis would become visible off the east coast of North America in 1968-1969. Fast forward 30 years later, in 1968 when a private pilot flying over the waters near North Bimini reported seeing a strange parallel structure in shallow water. This was the discovery of the Atlantis Road, or Bimini Road, and is now one of the most popular tourist attractions in Bimini.
Digging Up the Facts
Since the discovery, there’s been much mystery surrounding the site. Were Cayce’s psychic insights about Atlantis true? Was Plato’s story the first written record of Atlantis? Is the Bimini Road even a road? The structure has been explored by thousands of visitors, filmed for several documentaries, written about in books, and researched by scientists from all around the world. It consists of a single-dimensional set of stones that are rectangular in shape. Sitting almost 20 feet under water, the 19,000-foot wall arcs into a J-like formation. The geologists who core-drilled and studied the rocks determined that the stones are submerged, natural beach rock – identical to other rocks found in North Bimini. The stones are concretions of shell and sand that formed hard sedimentary rock, which over time fractured into straight lines and later shaped at ninety degree angles. Basically, they claimed it was a natural phenomenon of limestone blocks formed by erosion. In addition, no traces of any tool marks or inscriptions have been found on the blocks, but it is unlikely they would have survived this degree of erosion. These observations have been disputed by other investigators who believe the formations are identical in design to an ancient harbor submerged in the Mediterranean, indicative of being built in the same era by the same seafaring people.
Diving the Bimini Road
Despite these findings and the general agreement that the Bimini Road is a natural-made structure, there are still several who believe that the two rows of parallel stones were placed in a path formation by intelligent beings. Because of this, many people come to Bimini to look for clues and decide on their own the origin of these monolithic stones. The site is a regular stop on all the dive charters and is easily explored by snorkelers and divers. The best times to visit are in the spring and summer months when the weather and water is clear and you’ll be able to see fish and sea turtles among the stones. To access this 15 feet deep dive spot, you can take a boat out about a mile offshore Bimini's west coast, opposite of Resorts World Bimini. It's a fun boat ride to the site, and the dive operator usually builds suspense by sharing the history. Whether you believe the stones are linked to the Lost City of Atlantis or merely just an interesting natural rock formation, the Bimini Road will certainly leave you with a sense of wonder and awe as you get up close and personal with this intriguing underwater mystery.