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The Ancients were the first human beings, the long-lived beings that advanced rapidly technologically before their infighting and technological miscalculations brought an end to the civilization they had built. This article is for the development of that civilization in the years noted on the timeline as TM (teram mabul: before the flood). To them, though, time was measured as ST (shamah tebel: Year of the world). This civilization rose to a space-faring race that would eventually colonize worlds hundreds of light years from their home world. Meanwhile, back on the earth, time would be measured from the cataclysm as AM (akhar medel: after the flood).
Mankind was created out of the material in the ground of the planet called "Eretz," or Earth, on the sixth day of creation by the One God, Creator of all things. However, in this time line, the Almighty God chooses not to intervene in His creation. He provided a "test" to see if this race would go out on its own: the fruit of a tree in the midst of mankind's first home -- a tropical rain forest at the base of the tallest mountain on the planet at the time. Access to another tree, which provided an temporary antidote to the effects of the first tree, proved to be a boon to the rise of the race and its eventual dominion of other planets in the galaxy.
Rise and Fall on Earth
After Adam and Khavah moved out of the rain forest, they soon found the vast plains that reached toward the ocean to be very fertile. The plant and animal life they found there was almost as varied as that of the forest, and they adjusted. Soon they began to have children. The first two were boys, followed by twin girls. From these four children came two tribes - the Qeni and the Khabli. Many other children would follow - vastly more than would be possible in the world today - but these two tribes would absorb their cousins. For over a hundred years the first families would multiply exponentially, setting up family compounds within view of each other.
In the 128th year, after decades of "bad blood," the first child born to the first parents, a man by the name of Qen, killed his brother Khabel. Understandably, this crime caused an uproar among the tribes - and the majority of the Qeni tribe believed their founder's account of the conflict. A civil war arose, with the Qeni eventually being exiled from the larger community.
In the 130th year, a new son was born to Khavah -- her sixty-fifth and last child -- and he was named Seth, a word meaning "man" (in the sense of his relative weakness to other animals). From him would come the dominant race upon the earth -- the Seti. However, the Seti, which intermarry with their cousins of the Khabli and lesser tribes that came before them, would not rule as "ancients." The Ancients would rise instead from among the Qeni after the discovery deep in the rain forest of the "tree of life."
Expansion into the Galaxy
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Some time after leaving the forest, members of the Qeni, the tribe that had the first murderer as its father, figured out that the fruit ingested by the first parents had genetically altered all their descendants in such a way that even the most careful of humans would eventually die. Believing that a "cure" might be found in the original forest, expeditions returned to the mountain in search of any fruit or other plant part, that could reverse or at least arrest the effects of the "death gene." In the deepest reaches of the forest, they found reptiles of tremendous size that nonetheless seemed to show none of the obvious signs of aging. Fortunately for the explorers, these animals were plant-eaters and no danger to them. And the animals' favorite fruit came from a tree that grew in abundance in the swamps in the interior of the forest.
After years of attempting to cultivate these trees, the Qeni scientists decided that the only source of the pure compound was fresh fruit grown only in the soil of the original swamp. Over the years, though, members of the Khabli and Seti tribes had inhabited lands all around the mountain. Expeditions to the Mountain became more difficult, so military units began to accompany the scientists to the mountain. As a result, the earth was in a constant state of war from the fifth century on. Though a synthetic version of the Cure was never developed, members of elite ruling classes among the Qeni and Khabli had access to preserved extracts of the juice that allowed them to beat the biological time bomb in their DNA.
More to come ...
Invariably, mankind seeks for power. And conversely, mankind seeks for its origins. This is to be expected, for to know where you are going, it helps to know where you came from. The ancients, were no less human than all that came after them, but they were the "first" and such were the "originators" of all their progeny. They were the closest thing to "creators" that anyone could know. As the Qeni, and later the Khabli, would learn, knowledge brought power. And knowledge of the biological sciences led to medical breakthroughs that would give them an advantage over the masses.
In the years leading up to the destruction of the first civilization, the possessors of the Cure became stronger and smarter than the masses. They did not age as others did, and some even seemed to get younger with time. They did nothing to keep the masses from thinking of them as superior. They became known as "elohim," the powerful ones. They were what later peoples would call "gods."
Even after the Great Catastrophe, the descendants of the family of Noakh began to consider him and his sons as "gods" -- especially his sons whose lifespans were almost as long as his. Noah would take on many names in mythologies, but his role as "father of the Gods" was minor compared to the power and influence supposedly coming from Yepet, Kham, and Sem - the trio of "gods" that ruled over the three main people groups that spread out over the earth.
Some of the original "gods" are said to have returned periodically over time from their homes in the heavens. In modern times there have been sightings of flying crafts thought to be from other planets. No definitive contact, though, has been made with these supposedly advanced travelers.
More to come ...
It is said that the Ancients left a written record on the earth of their rise to prominence and departure from the earth. The story of Adam and Khavah coming out from the Mountain, along with the rise of the Seti tribe, survived past the flood. A bare mention of the rise of technology among the Qeni survived as well. However, no one has found the writings of the Qeni, or even of the Chabli. Much of the knowledge came into the new age via the intellect of Sem and the tenacity of Kham (who studied under his brother), but it was only in basic principles. The science of the Ancients had to be "relearned" if it were to benefit mankind again.
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Occasionally, bits of the past wash ashore from the vast seas of the earth. Usually the mysterious pieces are thought to be fraudulent or are taken to be something insignificant. Archeologists find that the Ancients were careful not to leave too much behind, or rather, nothing that could withstand the Cataclysm. The tools and plans used by the "elohim" at the beginning of the new age are said by some to have come over from the Ancients, but others insist that the founders of the new age invented these innovations as they went along. The truth is probably somewhere in between, with historians and scientists arguing for and against the very existence of the Ancients.
More to come ...
This list of known and suspected Ancients is mostly drawn from the most ancient of genealogical records. Though some of the generations after the mass departure of the Ancients in the third century TM, there are reports of humans with definine Ancient characteristics as late as fourteenth century AM.
- Qen, son of Adam. The first known man before the Catalclysm to halt his aging process in the twelth century TM, at the age of 225. He would drink the elixer of life every new moon until the departure living longer than any human known on earth.
- Methusa-El. The first of the Qeni to be hailed as a "god" (His name means "He who is of God"). He would be killed by his son Lemek the Powerful.
- Lemek. Famed promoter of technological advances. He would poison his own father with tainted elixer. His sons would carry on his innovations as the founders of farming, music, and metalurgy, His daughter by a second wife would become the wife of Noakh, the Survivor.
- Na`amah, daughter of Lemek. Her enhanced DNA would carry on through her son Kham.
- Khanok, son of Yered. Though a Seti, his mother had been of the ancient line of Khab`l, the Victim. The Khabli had been especially loyal to the old ideals until the discovery of the elixer and political deals that led to marriage agreements with the Qeni. The Khabli had proven especially adaptive to the affects of the elixer. Khanok was an early pioneer in deep space exploration, disappearing in the mid seventh century TM (in the waining years of earths first millennium).
- Methu-Shelakh, son of Khanok. A man of violence, known for his valor in battle (his name means "Man of the sword"), he vowed to stay behind to continue the "lost cause" of saving humanity from itself. He was 300 years old when his father disappeared.
- Kham, son of Noakh. Like his father, he married a Qeni, carrying the DNA of the Ancients over into the New Age with a vengence.
- Qan`an, son of Kham. The last of the "full blooded" Ancients, having not taken his heritage seriously before the flood. He would therefore have to "re-invent" much of the technology with the help of his uncle Sem.