Introduction. Atlantis was a continent of the Atlantic Ocean where, according to Plato, an advanced civilization developed some 11, 600 years ago. Plato affirms that, as the result of a huge volcanic cataclysm of worldwide extent, this continent sunk away underseas, disappearing forever. Official Science - the one you learn at school - rejects the actual existence of Atlantis, as it has so far been unable to find any traces of its reality.

But the reason for that is simple to explain. Everybody has been looking in the wrong locations, as Atlantis indeed lies in the opposite side of the world. So been told, of course... Wat does the name Atlantis actually means? The first thing to keep in mind is that mythical terms have a number of different etymologies, and are often interpretable in different languages, into which they were adapted when the myths were introduced locally. For instance, Atlas means, in Greek, 'the one who could not withstand.' Atlas was known as the 'Pillar of Heaven', that is, its support.

When Atlas became overburdened, the skies fell down, burying Atlantis. The names of Atlas and Atlantis originally came from the Sanskrit, which is the Holy Language of India, name of their Hell called A tala. This word means 'Deprived of its Pillar' or, conversely 'Bottomless' or, rather, 'Sunken to the Bottom'. Many further derivations are yet possible. Atlas is the personification of the Holy Mountain that is the support of heaven. He is the god that the Hindus equate with Shiva, also called Sth anu, meaning 'Pillar of Heaven' in Sanskrit.

The problem of Atlantis. Believers... Actually most of the scientists, scholars and researchers who have been studying the problem of Atlantis build up a lot of theories that are quite different from each other. If we have to report a survey about the possible existence of Atlantis we can know that the 60% of scholars believe in Atlantis and the 40% of them point out the mid Atlantic as the reliable site of Atlantis itself.

Study... Disbelieve... Unfortunately the study and research of Atlantis is really difficult and ambiguous because a lot of authors put their own country as the place where old ruins of the ancient empire lie, by showing a useless nationalism, while esoteric fonts describe atlantean's as the first inhabitants of the world, who were firstly only souls and later become the principal race of the Earth. When someone tries to analyse the problem of Atlantis, he should ignore all these sources, because they are, reasonably, the origin of the scepticism towards Atlantis.

How can people believe that atlantean's had psychological powers and destroyed themselves for more than two times? Best proof comes from non-believers... We cannot have proofs about these assertions, but, on the other hand, some none-believers constructed theories that are rather reliable and demonstrate the real existence of Atlantis. One of them, maybe the greatest, is Charles Berlitz, who wrote some books between 1969 and 1984 and believes in a flourishing Stone Age civilisation existed 12000 years ago. But the pioneer of modern studies about Atlantis is Ignatius Donnelly with the best seller 'Atlantis the antediluvian world', published in 1882. His theses are still the base of modern conjectures.

Among the best authors of Atlantis are Berlitz, Lewis Spence, Donnelly, L. Sprague De Camp, Edgerton Sykes, Flem-Ath, Otto Muck and J. V. Luce. Their proposals are founded on scientific proofs and evidence and appeal subjects as geology, history, oceanography and mythology. All of them were non-believers, who saw the theorie as something scientific and later on, after serious study, started to believe in this matter.

What where they studying about... We have two different important questions about Atlantis: where was it? Which kind of culture and technology did it develop? It's really difficult giving an answer because we haven't many documents about Atlantis: we dispose only of Plato's dialogues 'Timaeum' and 'Critias'. Then we find some little references to Atlantis in ancient Greek literature, historical reports or poetry. At last the existence of a large continent in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean could be read in many ways and so Atlantis can become Antarctica or the American continent. Regarding the culture of Atlantis we know their customs from Plato but we could suppose there is more than what Plato wrote. But it is writing by Plato, and although he is old, he didn't life in the time Atlantis was supposed to exist.

Great Civilizations... Related art with Atlantis... Anyway great civilisations as Egypt, Maya, Aztec seem to serve a memory of Atlantis' culture and history: that is more true as we recognise similar customs among these different civilisations. During nineties some studies about the great Sphinx reported that it could be older than 10000 year.

Graham Hancock explains in his 'Fingerprints of the gods' how it could be possible and what really are the great pyramid, Nazca's lines, pre-Colombian monuments. The answer to certain questions seems to be the same: Atlantis. So we can assume the existence of a great ancient civilisation without Plato's help. On that way Atlantis becomes a necessary key to explain historical events, cultures, languages etc.

Therefore thousands and thousands of years ago there could be more than one Atlantis, large continents called Lemuria, Hive or Mu. While Atlantis theory is supported by geological or cultural proofs, only James Churchyard mentions Mu, and there is no geological evidence of its existence in the middle of Pacific Ocean. Lemuria probably existed but it surely wasn't the land of a great civilisation. So, when the problem of Atlantis is studied, the research must consider a lot of scientific fields where we can take the proofs to build the large puzzle of Atlantis.

The most surprising fact is that an exact coincidence among all these proofs comes out easily (as we " ll see). That is the great difference between Atlantis's tudy and other fantastic or occult subjects. Discussion... Atlantis has been being discussed for two and half thousand years, since Plato spoke about it.

Then people were divided in two categories: people pro Atlantis or against. Aristotle, Plato's disciple, said: ' the man who build up Atlantis also destroyed it' referring to the sudden end of Atlantis. Then Aristotle refers that in the great ocean there was only a great island called An tilia, 'denying' what he said before and helping Plato's story. Most of the people who deny Atlantis say that there is no proof supported by old ruins in the world that can be referred to the sunken kingdom. It isn't quite exact: we still have a lot of ruins without an age and difficult to be dated. This is the case of great stone works in Egypt (Giza) or Central America, whose builders aren't certain yet.

Of course, everybody who wants to proof something without proof, says, that there's something with isn't proven that it isn't true. The real problem is to find archaeological evidence under the sea. That's why there's such a big discussion. In fact, if Atlantis was really destroyed by a great cataclysm, then it was erased by an unthinkably violence that broke to pieces each squared centimetres of land.

Then, looking for the ruins under a dark sea and kilograms of lava (that covered the temples and homes of the island) without a sophisticated technology is not simple. Besides we must remember that digging under a sea isn't as possible as on the land. Afterwards we have to consider that 12000 years have past since Atlantis submersion and so its ruins could be hidden by submarine nature! If there was the ability that we could investigate beneath the sea level, and there wasn't something, the quest would end. But now there is a possibility, and people like to believe, or don't believe.

It's a bit like UFO's. Or you believe it, or you don't and nobody can proof it until now. There were already found ruins, and walls, and even a street older than 6000 years, long before there was supposed to be civilization. People, especially historic y, believe that humanity started to become civilized from +/- 4000 for Christ. It is a plus minus, but being wrong for 2000 years is a serious +/-. Instead, recently in 1997, deep studies were done under Japan Sea because of a big stone construction that is aged 12000 years ago.

This is certainly man's work and it is really big: it is not a pyramid but a squared palace that looks similar to a fort. So it's interesting to notice that human civilisation could have begun thousands years before we believe. With these examples we " re putting archaeological and geological evidence of the possible existence of an unknown civilisation in the same time Atlantis would have existed. With this proof, many started to think that doing research toward Atlantis isn't a wast of time. Even if it didn't, there could be possibility, there was something other, an other civilization. Disbelievers...

Many scientists refuse to accept Atlantis because it could discredit their own theories. For example, some of them still believe that sea level is constant since millions and millions years ago: this is unacceptable because sand, canyons and complex mountains under sea prove those areas were not covered by water before. Egyptologists believe the Sphinx was built by Chefren because they found his statue near the Sphinx's temple, because the face of the great monument looks like his one (but was proved by specialised identifies they " re different) and because Titmouse IV erected a obelisk in which declare that Chefren took off the sand that partially submerged the Sphinx. If Atlantis really existed the history should be rewritten and it frightens a lot of. Also teachers are scared of this fact. Check this out, if the of Atlantis becomes proven.

The hole theorie of the Bible, historic y changes, everything becomes different. We don't talk anymore about the first civilization in 4004 BC, no we start to talk about the first civilization in 12000. Before the latest ice-time. Maybe, they even lived together with the dinosaurs, but that would get us too far.

The lost of library's... In ancient documents and literature we find only Plato mentions explicitly Atlantis while a lot of material was irremediably lost: for example, the great library of Alexandria was burnt and so for Syracuse's one. Especially in Alexandria's library were kept thousand and thousand books that were continuously read by the wisest people of the time (Tolomaeum, Plato, Solon is etc. ).

In that library all Egyptians' knowledge was saved and it would have contained some information on Atlantis, since Egyptians are the first civilisation after hypothetical end of Atlantis. Other writers, preceding or succeeding Plato, seem to refer to Atlantis indirectly and they often allude to a great island that were submerged in the ocean. Then, for centuries, during mediaeval age the subject was left apart and the name of Atlantis came back during 1500 and 1600. During Last two centuries small researches in all the world were made to discover Atlantis' ruins, especially after Donnelly's best seller, but results are still poor and some clues were found accidentally (Bimini wall, for example).

Gladstone, English prime minister, after reading Donnelly's book, tried to arrange an expedition for finding Atlantis, but no one wanted to risk such a research. Doctor Ewing studied Atlantic Ocean for 13 years, but he never found anything and eventually concluded 'Atlantis never existed'. However, by analyzing Plato's description on Atlantis we can try to get out the truth about Atlantis. Again, this is a great way, to keep the legend alive, al the evidence is lost.