Most of this information has not been published before - anywhere. It is the result of the authors own research.
This is Part 2 of a Series. Please read Part 1
before reading this as it puts the
following information into Context.
Flying Dragons: Vehicles of the Gods?
After "sky-gods" the second most prominent ingredient of ancient myth are Dragons, which also feature in every part of the world and most frequently
in ancient China.
This section proposes that the Dragons of Mythology are actually aircraft or spaceships and that our ideas of the red-eyed, fire-breathing
fantasy-serpents are misinterpretations and distortions that have developed over time. As odd as this idea may sound at first, it becomes more likely
when we look at the original descriptions and behaviour of Dragons and find that they were round flying metallic objects that spit fire rather than
menacing monsters. Metallic
because mythological accounts describe them as golden, silver, bronze, copper, “shiny”. They are also described
as glowing in the dark. As flying, landing and taking off again. And even as going underwater, and transporting various Beings (“Gods”) in their
“bellies” and as those “Gods” landing with them and walking around. Spitting Fire? Yes. Imagine on of our ancestors seeing one of our
jet-planes take off. How would he describe it? Probably with “it roars like thunder and spits fire”.
Consulting the Internet-Encyclopedia on Dragons I found this Definition:
The dragon is a legendary creature with serpentine or otherwise reptilian traits that features in the myths of many cultures. The two most
familiar interpretations of dragons are European dragons, derived from various European folk traditions, and the unrelated Oriental dragons, derived
from the Chinese dragon ("long"). (3)
This seemingly simple Definition alone contains several problems. Why, for example, is the Chinese Dragon "unrelated"
“ to the European
Dragon? This very item echoes the attitude of mainstream science that “Serpent Myths have no common roots”. But why not? Who says so? We know that
flying serpents and dragons feature in every ancient culture. Only to name a few:
Apophis was the giant serpent of ancient Egypt. Azazel is the biblical Dragon. In Avestan Mythology the serpent is called Azhi Dahaka. Mythical
pre-dynastic emperors of ancient China are called “Dragon Kings””. English folklore refers to Dragons ruling the earth in very ancient times.
Gorynych is the most famous ancient Russian Dragon. In Greek Mythology we have Hydra, a “Dragon-Like Being”. In Hebrew Scriptures the Dragon
reigning in the waters is called Leviathan. The Aztec Mythology of Ancient America has a flying serpent called Quetzalcoatl. Japenese Mythology has so
many ancient Dragons they’d be too numerous to list here. Hungarian Mythology calls the Dragon Sarkany. Tiamat and Apsu from Babylonian Mythology
are often considered to be Reptilian. The ancient Germanic Dragon is the Lindwurm. In Slavic Mythology Zmey Gorynych is the winged serpent that spits
fire. The Aborigines have their Rainbow Serpents.
The list of Serpents from every culture and country goes into the thousands, yet conventional “wisdom” maintains that they are unrelated and
fictitious. Carl Sagan for example, one of the most popular advocates of natural sciences in the 20th Century had this to say in his book “Dragons
of Eden” (1977):
“The Myth of Dragons arose from the innate fear of reptiles that we share with other mammals”
This sentence displays a certain amount of arrogance in that it wipes thousands and thousands of pages of ancient tradition away as meaningless.
Did Dragons originally look like discs?
I made an odd discovery while looking into the topic. And that is, that according to some Chinese Academics, “Dragons” were originally not
depicted as stylized snakes but as coil-shaped or disc-shaped.
One such early form was the pig dragon. It is a coiled, elongated creature with a head resembling a boar. The character for "dragon" in the
earliest Chinese writing has a similar coiled form, as do later jade dragon amulets from the Shang period. (3)
According to this view, the predecessors of the Dragon are called Zhulong or “Pig-Dragon” which seems like a rather unfortunate label in my
opinion because it appears to be based on our own modern-day prejudice of them being “Dragons” in the first place. According to the Chinese this
“coil shape later opened-up to become the shape of a snake”. This “Dragon” is shown in thousands of ancient artefacts and is sold in our times
as a jade embellishment. This is a jade artefact showing such a “Pig-Dragon”:
According to conventional wisdom...
...“The character for "dragon" in the earliest Chinese writing has a similar coiled form” and “Early pig dragons are thick and stubby;
later examples have more graceful, snakelike bodies”. (1)
So the image of a coiled or disc-like object transformed into a “more graceful snakelike body” over time
? Well wouldn’t that be
interesting! It would mean that the flying Dragon originally appeared as a flying Disc! Here are more examples (9) of the ancient artefact of the
Zhulong as the pig-dragon is called in Chinese, the first one being dated to 4000 BCE:
What is most amazing about these original depictions of “Dragons” is that they have nothing to do with what we were conditioned to believe in
Disney-esque movies, games and cartoons. Imagine them flying vertically for a moment. What do you see?
When I confront Skeptics with the notion of Dragons as misinterpreted flying saucers they chuckle and scoff: “Those are fictitious myths. Serpent
myths were a psychological reaction to our fear of snakes”. Such comments are ignorant of the fact that the rendering as snakes seems to have come
Apart from “Pig Dragon” there is another Definition for the word Zhulong
, which seems to fit much better to the idea of aircraft:
The keyword in the names Zhuyin and Zhulong is zhu, "torch; candle; shine upon; illuminate; light up" . (2)
As I’m not familiar enough with the Chinese language it remains a mystery to me how what may have originally been called “Shining Dragon” turned
And when did those coiled metallic shining discs become green, red-eyed, fire-breathing monsters? Even the western origins of the word point to
From Greek δράκων (drakōn), "a serpent of huge size, a python, a dragon" and that from δρακεῖν (drakein) aorist infinitive active
of the verb δέρκομαι (derkomai) "That which flashes or gleams”". (4)
That which flashes or gleams?
. That is quite consistent with the original Chinese sources. It is also more consistent with descriptions of the
Dragons being vehicles of the Gods rather than the Gods themselves. The writings of the Hindu Mahabarata also often refer to Nagas (flying serpents)
not as Gods themselves but as the Gods “riding” on them. But why do ancient cultures universally use reptilian creatures to describe what they
saw? Is it because the flying craft were built to look reptilian? Is it because the pilots were of a reptilian race? Or is that the image those
ancient Lords projected in order to deceive or entertain? I cant answer these question with any certainty. But in this context it is interesting to
look at the ancient Chinese seal script form for “Dragon”:
Nowadays this character is pronounced long in Mandarin Chinese and translated to “Dragon” in English. The modern character has meanwhile changed
to 龍. Looking at the original character for „Dragon“ though it may just as well be some human or humanoid being attached to some vaguely
aerodynamic device. Automatic associations to snake-monsters do not come up. Those “scales” on the side could just as easily be jet-nozzles.
Another interesting Encyclopedia entry:
Upon his head he has a thing like a broad eminence (a big lump), called [chimu] (尺木). If a dragon has no [chimu], he cannot ascend to the sky.
The reason this caught my attention is not only because it seems to indicate some kind of device or pilot being necessary for flight. The word
“Chimu” is also the exact name of a people said to have founded an ancient Kingdom in Peru (The Kingdom of Chimor). The Chimu of Peru, are said to
be descendants of Dragons (a main temple of theirs being called “Huaca El Dragon”) and their capital city was called Chan Chan, which actually
sounds rather Chinese. In researching this subject it does pay off to pay attention to names, words and their meaning.
Lets see what other interesting information we can glean from records that are widely available in public.
It can fly among the clouds or hide in water (according to the Guanzi). It can form clouds, can turn into water or fire, can become invisible or
glow in the dark (according to the Shuowen Jiezi). At the end of his reign, the first legendary Emperor Huang Di was said to have ascended to Heaven
with his Dragon. Since the Chinese consider Huang Di as their ancestor, they sometimes refer to themselves as "the descendants of the dragon". This
legend also contributed towards the use of the Chinese dragon as a symbol of imperial power.(5)
The Chinese knew many different types of “Dragons”, and the descriptions thereof tend to resemble a fleet of aircraft rather than a group of
fantasy-figures. Lets look at only a few of the hundreds of “longs”
• Tialong: Literally “Sky Dragon” or “Star Dragon”, a Dragon that pulls chariots of the Gods and guards places in the sky.
• Shenlong: Literally “God Dragon”.
• Fucalong: Literally “Hidden Treasure Dragon”, associated with flying into Volcanoes and Underground to hide treasures.
• Dilong: Literally “Earth Dragon” (as opposed to “Sky Dragon”), also associated with entering rivers, lakes and seas.
• Yinglong: Literally “Communicating or Responding Dragon”
• Panlong: Coiled Dragon
• Jialong: Scaled Dragon
• Huanglong: “Yellow Dragon”, the vehicle of the Emperor
• Feilong: Literally “Flying Dragon”, associated with flying in the sky in through the Clouds.
• Qinglong: Literally “Azure Dragon” associated with certain “mythological creatures”.
• Qilong: A Dragon sometimes horned, sometimes not horned.
• Longwang: Literally “Dragon Kings”
• Hong: Literally “Rainbow Serpent”
• Teng: A flying Dragon without legs
There are many other types, too numerous to count. Thinking that all of this comes from “peoples inherent fear of snakes” is a bit of a stretch,
no? It seems that all this talk of Dragons throughout the world is based on an ancient reality, long forgotten. The original meanings of the words
were merely stylized and mythologized.
Other Asian Dragon Myths
For comparative measure, lets take a short look at sanskrit literature. From the Mahabarata:
In the Mahabarata the enemy of the Nagas (flying serpents, Dragons) is a “gigantic bird” named Garuda. I put “gigantic bird” in quotes,
because just like the Nagas are not literally snakes, Garuda is not literally a bird. Garuda is a Deva (Demi-God) who uses a “gigantic bird” as
his flying vehicle. Other accounts of Garuda describe say that he himself is “half Eagle, half Human”. He is also said to be of violent force,
speed and martial skill. Garuda is associated with the star Constellation Aquila (The Latin name for Eagle). The star constellation was associated
with Vulture Volans (flying Vultures) by the ancient Romans. This is interesting because Buddhist Tradition also has their own Garuda which they
describe as an “extremely predatory giant bird”. Buddhist Mythology also says Garuda is “well-winged” or has “speedy wings”.
“As a bird” Garuda is said to have a golden body. When he flies he is so big that he “blocks out the sun”. Although he is said to be the
enemy of the serpents, his mothers sister is said to be “The Mother of Serpents”. One day his mother, Vinata lost a foolish bet or game to her
sister (the serpent) and became enslaved to her. Garuda wished to release his mother from slavery, approached the serpents and asked them how he could
buy her freedom. They told him he’d have to go to into the “Ocean of Milk” (as the story involves Garuda flying to the stars, could it be that
this was the ancients term for “Milky Way”?) and bring them amrita, “elixir of immortality”. Amrita at that time was said to be in the
possession of other Gods who guarded it jealously. They had “ringed the elixir with a massive blazing ring of light that covered the sky” and had
“blocked the way to it with a fierce mechanical contraption of sharp rotating blades”. Despite these precautions Garuda travelled to the “abode
of the Gods in the sky” to steal their treasure. He was met by Gods in full battle-array. Garuda defeated their army and “scattered them in all
directions”. He then extinguished the “Ring of Fire” with some type of water and passed through the rotating blades by reducing his size. He
then returned to the serpents with the elixir (and later conspired to regain possession of it).
Only this short trip to Vedic literature shows that the ancients of India knew how to discern between normal birds and snakes and those vehicles
piloted by the “Gods”. Vedic literature is also full of descriptions of mechanical devices and machinery. It seems that here the Information was
passed down with less filtering than elsewhere.
For the longest time Dragons were worshipped as holy in China. They are still revered and it is considered a crime to treat depictions of Dragons
disrespectfully. Western Science has placed the entire Mythology into “spiritual” realms with no connection to or bearing on our physical reality.
However, the Dragons or Pilots/Gods of the Dragons respectively, are described as having entirely human traits and dealing with everyday life.
According to Chinese Mythology they…
• Mated with Humans and produced offspring (“Descendants of the Dragon”)
• Dragons can support heavy weights
• They like music and literature
• They can fly very fast
• They can slaughter their enemies
• Dragons themselves can be very loud and noisy (6,7)
In Vedic literature, the enemy of the serpent is the Eagle. In Chinese Mythology the serpents greatest adversary is the Tiger – the flying Tiger to
be more precise. The Tiger on which various Gods, Half-Gods and Humans flew to be even more precise. Guru Rinpoche was said to be flying around Asia
rescuing various areas from serpents and demons and spreading Buddhism throughout the Himalayas. This is noteworthy because there are several world
religions that are said to have been founded in order to battle the serpent – Christianity being one of them.
Moving forward lets look at some of the Dragon Mythology of the countries surrounding China. It is safe to assume that their Mythologies have similar
origins and may contain a few more clues.
In Bhutan the word for “Thunder Dragon” is Druk, which is interestingly enough more related to our word for it than the Chinese “long”. In
their own language Bhutan is called Druk Yul, “Land of the Dragon” and their leaders are called Druk Gyalpo, Dragon Kings. The reason it is called
“Thunder Dragon” is because thunder is “the voice of the Dragon roaring”.
In Japan the most ancient word for Dragon is Tatsu (which reminds me of an ancient Germanic word for Dragon “Tatzel-wurm”). Another word is ryū.
In ancient Japan Dragons also fly but more often they are described as descending into water. The first Emperor of Japan, the Half-God Jimmu is said
to descend from Toyotama-hime, a goddess who was married to the Dragon-God Ryūjin. So here we have yet another “founder of a country” who is
descendant from “Dragons”. Japanese Mythology agrees that the Dragon is in conflict with the Tiger. The Tatsu is often described as being able to
either shapeshift or disappear.
Korean Dragons are also able to fly but, just like Japanese Dragons, are often described as ascending into and dwelling in the Oceans. Possibly
Dragons are “flying creatures” in China because the landmass of China does not have many oceans to descend into, whereas Japan and Korea are
surrounded by waters. More often than in other countries, Korea features Dragons speaking and communicating – both with each other and the surface
dwelling humans. Another interesting difference with Korean Dragons is that they are often shown to carry an Orb known as Yuh-Ji-Joo. It was said that
whoever owned this Orb was able to “create at will”. This is reminiscent of the wish-fulfilling Cintamani Pearl of Hindu literature.
Some external Sources used for Section 1:
(6) Lihui Yang / Handbook of Chinese Mythology
(7) Keith G. Stevens / Chinese Mythological Gods
[edit on 22-10-2009 by Skyfloating]