An Interview with Dr. Lora Little: Straight Talk on Atlantis, Edgar Cayce, the Lost Hall of Records, Jung and Ancient Myths, and Much, Much More!
by Brent Raynes
Since age 11, Dr. Lora Little has been drawn to the legendary story of Atlantis. Many years later, a professional psychotherapist, Dr. Lora has pursued the ancient mysteries with great passion. The author and co-author of numerous books and articles on the search for Atlantis, as well as the Lost Hall of Records that acclaimed Kentucky “Sleeping Prophet” Edgar Cayce described in trance readings, Lora and her husband Dr. Greg Little have trekked untold thousands of miles visiting hundreds of ancient Native American sites all over North America. In addition, they have traveled to Egypt, Central America, and, for the last several years they have been studying and documenting incredible underwater sites like Bimini Road in the Bahamas.
In this exclusive interview, Dr. Lora shares with our readers her discoveries, her personal thoughts and conclusions, and her plans and aspirations for the future.
Brent Raynes: Sometime back, when we were a print publication, you contributed a thought-provoking series of original feature articles for us. At that time, your husband Dr. Greg Little, co-editor of this magazine, was focusing on ancient Indian Mound sites and earthworks in his Archaeotrek column, as well as the evidence and his theory for UFOs being an electromagnetic, plasmoid-based intelligence. You first began writing about Edgar Cayce, his readings, and the search for the Lost Hall of Records in Alternate Perceptions back in 1996, concluding with our final printed edition in 2001. It was certainly a series of very detailed, thought-provoking and highly informative articles. To review (and some of those issues I believe are still available to interested readers from our website), beginning in the Spring 1996 (#34) edition you wrote The Mystery of Atlantis: The Edgar Cayce Contribution. That was Part 1, followed by Part 2 in the Summer (#35) issue, Part 3 in the Fall (#36) issue. Then in the Winter 1997 (#37) issue you presented us with Edgar Cayce Predictions: Earth Changes?, Part 1, followed by Part 2 in the Spring 1997 (#38) issue; then Edgar Cayce Research Update: Egypt in the Summer 1997 (#39) issue; Edgar Cayce: The Limits of His Ability, in the Fall 1997 (#40) issue; Edgar Cayce: The Search For Cayce's Atlantis, Winter 1998 (#41) issue; Edgar Cayce: Second Coming & 5th Root Race, Spring 1998 (#42) issue; Edgar Cayce: Angels & Archangels, Part 1, Fall 1998 (#44) issue; Part 2, Winter 1999 (#45); Edgar Cayce: The Origin of the Mayan Culture, Part 1, Spring 1999 (#46); Part 2, Summer 1999 (#47); Edgar Cayce: 1999 Egypt Conference Report, Fall 1999 (#48); Edgar Cayce: The Wise Men From The East, Winter 2000 (#49); Archaeotrek & Edgar Cayce: ARE Annual Egypt Conference, Summer 2000 (#51); right up to our final printed Winter 2001 (#52) issue which featured your article Edgar Cayce: The Nature of Evil.
Indeed, all in all, a very comprehensive and very well-researched series of detailed reports, generally containing an assortment of photographs as well. It was right near the time that you stopped writing your back-to-back blockbuster features for us that your time became more focused (out of time management necessity I am sure!) on book writing projects, beginning with The Lost Hall of Records in 2000, which you co-wrote with John Van Auken, an exciting, information, photo and illustration packed book that reviewed the compelling evidence for Cayce's description of one ancient Hall of Records being located in Central America. In 2001, you, Greg, and John co-authored Mound Builders: Edgar Cayce's Forgotten Record of Ancient America, which again tied in compelling archeological evidence with Cayce's trance readings. In 2003, you and Greg co-authored The ARE's Search for Atlantis, which focused on the initial and exciting (and still ongoing) onsite work that you and Greg were conducting at the so-called Bimini Road and other sites in the Bahamas, that tied in with Cayce's readings (this is where he predicted a portion of Atlantis would be found). In 2005, you were the main author of Secrets of the Ancient World, which you co-wrote with Greg and John also, which presented a very comprehensive global and historical volume of evidence that again tied in with Cayce's remarkably accurate readings. Again this was another book full of detailed information, photographs and illustrations.
This just scratches the proverbial surface of things, and hasn't even mentioned the many on-site video documentary projects that you and Greg later worked together on. But if nothing else, hopefully with these introductory words I've clearly established in the minds of each reader the considerable depth and extent of your accumulated research and acquired first-hand field experience. You and Greg both have gone above and beyond the contributions of others in these areas. In fact, what the both of you have single-handedly accomplished over these recent years has, in my considered opinion, been largely in a unique class altogether by itself. You both left the comfortable armchairs from which many authors have expounded upon these matters and you also separated the proverbial wheat from the chaff, finding conventional explanations behind the many so-called mysteries reported upon and rehashed for so long by others. But in the process of elimenation, you also uncovered such true and genuinely exciting mysteries for us to reflect and ponder upon.
So let us begin this interview by discussing what experience has shown you to be the best and most compelling evidence to date, and something about this necessary process of separating the wheat from the chaff. It's been a lot of work, has it not!?
Dr. Lora Little: Thank you for such a thorough review of my previous work. It has been a busy decade and a half. If someone had told me back in 1996 that doing a regular column on the Cayce material for Alternate Perceptions would lead to so many opportunities and adventures I probably would not have believed it. This journey into the world of ancient mysteries has been filled with many sudden and unexpected twists and turns. It has tested me on every level and given me lots of opportunities for both personal and professional growth.
I am especially grateful that as a result of those articles the Cayce readings became an area of mutual interest for Greg and I. Most of those who have known Greg and I since before we were married predicted that we would eventually work together in some sort of professional partnership. However, given our educational backgrounds they assumed it would be in the field of mental health rather than alternative archaeology. In fact, other than the search for Atlantis our career paths have diverged widely over the years since Greg felt pulled to the field of corrections while I pursued a career in the public health sector. For the first years of our marriage our interests in archaeology were relegated to our off-work hours. Almost every vacation and weekend involved a trip to ancient ruins and Indian mounds. Even our honeymoon was planned so that we could spend it touring Aztec, Toltec and Mayan ruins near Mexico City. So we have both been drawn to ancient mysteries since the beginning of our relationship some 35 years ago.
Atlantis has been a particular interest for me since early in life. My first awareness of the story came from a science fiction book I read at age 11 the title of which I cannot recall. But what I do remember is that the main characters were Atlanteans exiled from their homeland and the storyline involved their interacting with people less advanced. I was really fascinated by the idea of some advanced civilization existing in the distant past. I was even more excited when I found out shortly thereafter that there were people who believed there was a real Atlantis. I was so taken by the subject that I soon located a copy of one of Ignatius Donnelly's books on Atlantis and tried my best to read it. At that age the amount of technical detail was over my head but I checked it out of my local library repeatedly over the years in order to try to absorb and understand the material. Of course, many years later I came upon the Edgar Cayce readings and was delighted to see a very full coverage of the topic. When I began writing for Alternate Perceptions I selected Atlantis early on as a topic out of the assumption that others would find it as fascinating as I had.
As you mentioned after many years of writing about the subject of Atlantis and Cayce's Halls of Records, Greg and I did decide finally that just writing about it was not enough. I became immersed in the search for the Yucatan Hall of Records and am convinced that the Cayce readings do point to Piedras Negras, Guatemala as the location. Although the archaeological records from the University of Pennsylvania and Brigham Young University were rich with data and full of tantalizing possibilities, it was obvious a visit to the site would be necessary. That trip was the adventure of a lifetime. It was so rewarding on a personal and intellectual level to be able to spend days on the actual ruins after having so carefully sifted through the field notes and reports on the site. I was even able to talk at length with one of the Guatemalan archaeologists who had been in charge of a portion of the most recent excavations.
Greg was especially inspired after reading Andrew Collins' book "Gateway to Atlantis" since it does such a thorough job of cataloging and organizing the many "discoveries" made over the years. He felt that there were some findings that just had to be checked out firsthand. We had both been frustrated by the tendency in the past for researchers in the Bahamas to make sensational claims about the existence of certain anomalies yet often there was only a single grainy photograph or the word of one or two persons as verification. Follow-up and thorough documentation was rare. Of course, once we ventured over to the Bahamas we found out that following up is a lot harder than it seems. Many of the most enigmatic discoveries are located on the Great Bahamas Bank which although close to Florida is truly an undiscovered and mostly empty frontier. If you go there you had better be prepared to take care of yourself as there is no help available in case of emergency. In addition, anytime you work with a force as powerful and unpredictable as the ocean there are always many challenges.
So in answer to your original question as to what I feel is the most compelling discovery so far in the search for evidence for Atlantis the answer would have to be the underwater rectangular features at the 90ft level off North Bimini. These were first discovered in 2006 by long time Atlantis researcher Bill Donato from a side scan sonar project funded by A.R.E. Due to the dangerous conditions of the seas at the time he was there he was unable to locate the site while diving. We asked Donato the next year if we could try during one of our trips and he gave us the GPS location numbers. Our charter captain and master diver, Eslie and Krista Brown, after much difficulty were able to do a short dive on the site and took a series of still photographs. They reported seeing only some piles of coral along a ridge and nothing they could identify as manmade. Despite the murky conditions we were shocked to discover that the photographs of one of the coral piles contained what appeared to be square building blocks sitting one on top of the other. After several attempts to dive on the site a second time that were aborted due to weather and current conditions, Greg and I finally dove on the site with the History Channel in May of 2009. The results of that dive can be seen on an episode of the History Channel's Mysteryquest series that aired in the Fall of 2009.
The significance of these rectangular formations is primarily their location along what would have been the ancient shoreline around 10,000 B.C. - the time both Plato and Cayce identify as the period of the final destruction of Atlantis. The sidescan images show rectangular shapes occuring at regular intervals along a straight line at 90-100 ft depth - a shape and configuration that is not normally found on the sea floor unless placed there by man. If Atlantis was indeed destroyed in 10,000 B.C. you would expect that there might be some remains along the beach or shoreline where the population of that time would have most likely lived. Of course after so much time these building remains would be covered in a thick coat of coral - as these are. And this is problematic since coral often liquifies and essentially takes over the stone upon which it grows. However, it is our hope that underneath the sands near the coral rectangles may be found some building remains that have remained under the sand for long enough that no (or little) coral growth was able to take hold. We noticed from pictures we have obtained from our drop camera that there are curious areas between the rectangular coral piles that appear to be rectangular forms still under the sand. All that can be seen are the early bud-like growths protruding through the sand forming almost perfect right angles.
Brent Raynes: In recent years, some truly startling new findings in archeology have emerged. These new discoveries have, for example, shifted ancient historical timelines way back prior to our Clovis culture. In addition, genetics research has placed certain ancient groups of people in locations that we previously had no clue. Incredibly, and as you and Greg have both written, a lot of this emerging new information seems to correlate astonishingly well with information that came from Edgar Cayce's trance readings. Could you briefly outline for us some of these key facts that you yourself find most significant and compelling? Also what meaning and implications do you perhaps feel should be given to them?
Dr. Lora Little: In late 2000, shortly after The Lost Hall of Records was published, Greg and I started doing research for the Mound Builders book. Greg was still at that time skeptical of Cayce's readings when they moved away from health. He had read my articles on the Atlantis story and Cayce's story of the Creation and human evolution, but was not convinced that they could be verified as well as the readings given for specific medical problems. Much of the story laid out by Cayce did then, and still does now, seem far out and improbable. Since we had investigated mounds over many years we decided to see what the readings had to say about the mound builder culture. We were both surprised to see that Cayce had a lot to say. He was even specific about migrations of Mayans and Atlanteans to the Ohio area during the time of the mound builders. And to our further surprise, according to the readings, the Americas were populated as far back as 50,000 B.C.! We were not so sure we would be able to correlate any of the current archaeological evidence to Cayce.
We spent time catching up on the latest archaeological discoveries noting that in 1997 it was finally confirmed that evidence for a 35,000 year old settlement on the southern tip of South America was indisputable. This of course blew apart the idea that the Native American culture first came to the Americas over the Bering land bridge in 11,000 B.C. Called the Clovis theory, it had been supported by the discovery of a style of spearpoint that was dated to the same era. According to this theory all Native Americans came over from Siberia in 11,000 B.C. and somehow made their way down to South America and populated the entire area in just a 1,000 years or so. The new discovery in Monte Verde and also others in Brazil, Mexico, Pennsylvania and even in Alaska showed that there had been human settlements in the Americas many thousands of years before 11,000 B.C.
A further review of the literature led us to a new technology that involved testing the DNA in ancient bones. Although these studies began in the 1980s the ability to trace migration patterns using mitochondrial DNA reached a climax in 1997 and has now revolutionized the dating of ancient human remains. Once again, we ran into the 1997 date and it was a study published in that year that provided what is the most spectacular evidence to support Cayce's history. The analysis process not only identifies the type of DNA in the bones but can trace the lineage of that DNA type showing worldwide migration patterns. When we put the data together with the Cayce dates it was suddenly all there - the evidence we thought we would never find for a migration around the time of the final destruction of Atlantis ca. 10,000 B.C.. Even more significant, the data also corresponded to the migrations of Atlanteans to the Americas around 22,000-28,000 B.C. and 50,000 B.C. And as if that weren't enough the DNA evidence supported Cayce's claim that Atlanteans migrated to parts of England, the Pyrenees and Egypt. It truly was breathtaking and totally unexpected. For those wanting a more detailed explanation see our books Ancient South America or Edgar Cayce's Atlantis. New data continue to pore out of those studies and nothing so far refutes that initial match-up with the Cayce story. One group of mtDNA called haplogroup X is especially enigmatic and may be the key to the Atlantean migrations since it shows up in all the places Cayce said it should but no place of origin can be found.
Of course, since DNA evidence is a new science and because it turns cherished theories upside down it is being received with skepticism by the mainstream archaeological community. However, we were gratified to learn in a recent informal discussion with a paleo-archaeologist that indeed the theory of Clovis-first was so ingrained that it was career ruination to dig deeper for evidence of human settlements pre-dating that period. Fortunately that is now changing and as a result more evidence for pre-Clovis settlements are turning up. Some are even being found off-shore underwater giving us hope that perhaps Atlantean era artifacts or structures will one day be found and recognized by the mainstream.
And then there is that 1997 date we kept running into and its link to Cayce's prediction of a shift in consciousness that was to occur around 1998. It was all an amazing set of discoveries and needless to say Greg is no longer a skeptic when it comes to the Cayce readings. That is not to say that either of us believe the readings are 100% accurate. The medical readings have been analyzed and determined to have an accuracy of around 80%. In our book Mound Builders were able to verify 77% of specific claims made by Cayce in the mound builders readings while 20% are still uncertain and only 3% were determined to be absolutely incorrect.
Brent Raynes: Back in July of 2009, for nearly a week, Joan and I got to join you and Greg and about two dozen others with the ARE on a wonderful tour of some truly impressive and awe-inspiring ancient Indian Mounds and earthworks in Ohio. One site in particular, in Portsmouth, Ohio, which extends for several miles over across the Ohio River to two other major sites in Kentucky, was where something truly astounding and enigmatic once existed. That something may have been connected with a representation of Atlantis itself. Cayce may have even described it once when giving a trance reading it seems. I'm sure that our readers would find the mysteries of Portsmouth and the surrounding area of tremendous interest. Could you shed some enlightenment for us?
Dr. Lora Little: The mound sites at Portsmouth, Ohio are certainly unusual and mysterious. They are actually a series of ceremonial earthworks believed to have been constructed by the Hopewell culture ca. 100 BC to 500 B.C. There are several of these large centers still remaining in Ohio and the largest one still intact in Newark, Ohio is as overwhelming in its scope as anything in Egypt. The site at Portsmouth has been largely destroyed unfortunately but must have at one time been a very powerful spiritual/religious site since it is located where the Scioto and Ohio Rivers converge. These natural features were considered to be places of great power by the Native Americans.
The portion of earthworks within the city of Portsmouth was once a complex that contained circular and horseshoe-shaped enclosures with 12 foot high embankments near a platform mound. One of the horseshoe enclosures and part of the mound still remain in a city park. What was of interest to us was the five mile long parallel walls of walkways which led to another earthwork of the same era located across the Ohio River in Kentucky. The parallel walls end at the shore of the Ohio River and pick up again straight across on the opposite shore. They continue for another 1.5 miles leading directly into one of the most unusual Native American formations we have seen. This earthwork forms a series of three concentric circles surrounding a 22 foot high conical mound. The concentric circles are evenly divided by four openings that allow entry to a flat area around the base of the inner mound. When we first saw the Squire and Davis drawings of the site from 1847 we were struck with its resemblance to Plato's description of the center city of Atlantis which he described as having concentric circles bisected by 4 canals.
The Cayce readings claim the mound builders of the Ohio Valley were descendants of Atlanteans and Mayans who had migrated up from Central American. We wondered if perhaps this site was some sort of replica built for special remembrances of the origin of some of the ancient peoples. To follow the parallel walled pathways the people would have to cross a wide body of water - maybe even risk their lives - just as they had in the Cayce story to get from Atlantis to Central America. Could this site have been part of some sort of reenactment ritual? Although it would seem nonsense to some, Greg and I remain amazed by this site. As you know, during the A.R.E. Mound Tour of July 2009 we were given permission by the landowners to access the circular mound in Kentucky and were happy to see how much is still intact. The owner shared with us that other researchers have noted its resemblance to Plato's Atlantean city so we are not alone.
Brent Raynes: What are your future goals and aspirations, at this point?
Dr. Lora Little: I am blessed (or you might say cursed) with more interests than time available to explore them all - music, spirituality, psychology, Edgar Cayce, and archaeology. With regards to my longtime interest in Atlantis I have several possibilities beckoning to me. Of course, Greg and I have much more we would like to do in the Bahamas especially in diving on and exploring more of the unusually shaped sea grass formations we have targeted via aerial surveys. But recently I have become intrigued by another aspect of Atlantis - I am fascinated by the fascination people have for the story of Atlantis. I am certainly one of those people, but through the years I have met so many others from all walks of life, all ages, and all religious denominations who can't seem to get enough of this mystery. I have also had since my college years a special admiration for the writings of Carl Jung and for the past 6 years have had the opportunity to study his theories with others in a monthly seminar format. Jung believed that ancient myths describe more than just the material history or fantasies of the culture that existed during which they were written. They contain universal elements and themes. They also inform us about our personal inner world and possibly about the psychology of our society. There have been many times during our field work when we have endured dangerous and difficult conditions. I have often found myself wondering whether solving this mystery is worth this much risk and hardship. I gave a lecture last year in Texas entitled "Does Atlantis Matter?" about my attempt to understand what is going on both in myself and in our modern culture. I am still trying to figure out why the mystery of Atlantis has created such a plethora of exposure on TV and in print and also whether it is deserving of my own personal time, energy, and resources. And, if so, why? Could the mythological themes of the Atlantis story mirror something else and what would happen if I (and we) become conscious of that something else.
Thank you Brent for these insightful questions. I hope I have answered them to your satisfaction. I have certainly enjoyed thinking about these puzzling discoveries and issues.
Brent Raynes: Thank you, Lora! The real insights emerged from your many thought-provoking and fascinating explanations!