I wonder how any other important things in history were decided by random events that had no real basis in the reality of the situation.
By the looks of things quite a lot. The Mesopotamia was one of the first civilisation areas that recorded astrological events and rejected the beliefs about dire omens from comets, meteorites and eclipses when they realised that they were cyclical and repeated. Considering that most, if not all, of the reasons for invading Mesopotamia recently were in the realms of fantasy, maybe it this decision was made on a similar basis (nothing would surprise me).
While I'm sure this is true, I wonder how the idea that the sky was a fixed perfect place with no change at all and the powers that be who refused to believe that rocks fell from the sky and how reports of meteors were usually scoffed at by those powers but then they would turn around and proclaim these lights in the sky to be signs from god. It seems a little bit contradictory to me not to mention self serving. A quote from Thomas Jefferson seems in order here "I would rather believe that a Yankee professor would lie than to believe that rocks could fall from the sky" or something like that:hihi:
Wasn't it Caesar (Julius) who recorded that the Celts were more afraid of the skies falling in than they were of the Roman legions?
I see what you mean but would the meteors always be in the west to be followed?
The Tunguska article (New Scientist) described the trajectory as being from the North West although their diagram shows it coming in from the South East (i.e. like wind direction, where it comes from not goes to).
They come from different directions but seem to fall along the same line for the same religions (Buddhists just love those big rocks for their carving). I saw a cable show about widespread meteorite falls in south America and how they were mined by the people of the time. That would have to be much earlier than 10K years, possibly allowing a 5K year cycle. The Mayans have some interesting ideas about timings and 2012, but that's another thread.
That was over the Indian ocean not the Mediterranean but if had been just a few minutes later it would have been over the battle ground of the first gulf war and might have resulted in a nuclear strike by the US.
That would have been lucky for the Mesopotamians.
I think (Dean) Jonathon Swift wrote about a similar thing in 'Gullivers Travels', or was that in SF (about their enemy dropping huge rocks on them from the sky, and both sides working out how to retaliate)? If you saw the latest US version of the book (mini series with Ted Danson, close to the original) you'll note that they used the Irish Rock of Cashel (+ its medieval church/fortress) as the flying rock that housed the scientists. If, like me, you've seen the 'Monkey Magic' series you probably find something similar to the visitations of the flying god heads.
There are also other objects that our ancient ancestors left for us that may point to observations of celestial events. They are series of stone ring forts (Cashels) that lie in straight lines. There are two sets of these on the west coast of Ireland. One set of four is in line with a place called Silvermines in Tipperary where the last open cut deposit was removed in the 1950's from halfway up a mountain (Mother mountain or MaherSleive). Follow the line on a map (Mercator) and it appears to go straight through most of what we regard as the cities that founded Western Civilisation as we know it. The other set seems to coincide with the Mt Saint Patrick/Gotland/Tunguska path.
There's still a lot of sifting the wheat from the chaff to do, hopefully somebody without a vested religious interest will do a serious investigation on the matter.