Home https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ Science https://server7.kproxy.com/servlet/redirect.srv/sruj/smyrwpoii/p2/ The Stone Age: Prehistoric people became tall – Israeli scholars

The Stone Age: Prehistoric people became tall – Israeli scholars

Prehistoric people sought psychedelic experiences in deep and narrow caves, a team of Israeli scholars claimed in a paper published in Journal of Archeology, Consciousness and Culture last week.

“People have always been fascinated by caves. Underground cavities and cavities in mountains played a special role in ontology and cosmology in indigenous societies, past and present, ”explained Yafit Kedar, a PhD candidate in the Department of Archeology and Near East Studies at Tel Aviv University.

Kedar’s research focuses on understanding the consequences of the spread of smoke and air circulation on humans in Paleolithic caves and stone huts.

“A few years ago, when I visited some ornate caves in France, I began to notice that most of the images are found deep in very narrow caves,”

; she told The Jerusalem Post. “I began to wonder why they chose to work this way as opposed to painting at the entrance to wider caves, where they too could have had some natural light.”

Over 400 decorated caves, whose drawings date back to the Upper Paleolithic period – between 40,000 and 11,000 years ago – have been found in Western Europe.

Scientists began to consider the possibility that for prehistoric humans penetrating hundreds of meters deep into the caves, represented a conscious choice that allowed them to connect with their cosmos with the low oxygen concentration found in the environments that acts as a substance.

“The natural oxygen concentration in the atmosphere is 21%,” Kedar explained. “A lower oxygen concentration creates a condition known as hypoxia.”

Hypoxia officially occurs when the oxygen concentration is below 18%.

The researchers pointed out that its symptoms include dizziness and headaches, but also euphoria and an increase in the release of dopamine – which can lead to hallucinations and experiences outside the body, especially if the oxygen level drops below 14.5%.

The team, which included independent researcher Gil Kedar and TAU professor of prehistoric archeology, Ran Barkai, simulated the use of artificial light in various enclosed spaces inside caves to analyze the conditions in such contexts in upper Paleolithic caves.

The combination of restricted air circulation and the use of torches and oil lamps resulted in a drop in oxygen concentration below 18% in 15 minutes, with the percentage falling as low as 11%. Humans can survive in an environment as long as the rate is above 9%.

According to the researchers, the altered state of mind caused by hypoxia also affected the traction of the caves.

“We suggest that the depictions themselves be seen as a component of human attachment and interaction with the cosmos, and not as the sole and ultimate goal of the people who created them in the innermost depths of the cave,” they wrote in the newspaper.

“We argue that entering these deep, dark caves was a conscious choice, motivated by an understanding of the transformative nature of an underground, oxygen – depleted space.”

The next step for the team will be to understand more about how many people these caves could accommodate at the same time in terms of oxygen level as well as the number of torches.

“After running the simulation on computers, I would like to measure the oxygen levels in real caves,” Kedar concluded.

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