If we go by the Turkish site Göbekli Tepe:
The immense complex, which predates Stonehenge by about seven thousand years, has cast doubt on the conventional view that agriculture produced cities, suggesting instead that religion did. We have no idea, of course, what the religion that called forth such a massive long-lasting effort was — not its cosmology, nor its teachings, nor its organization. We only know that no one lived at the site (no water or evidence of cooking).
One enterprising suggestion was proposed by an astronomer in 2013, that the builders were motivated by the sudden appearance of Sirius, the dog star, as a result of one of Earth’s periodic millennial wobbles:
Today, Sirius can be seen almost worldwide as the brightest star in the sky — excluding the sun — and the fourth brightest night-sky object after the moon, Venus and Jupiter. Sirius is so noticeable that its rising and setting was used as the basis for the ancient Egyptian calendar, says [Giulio] Magli. At the latitude of Göbekli Tepe, Sirius would have been below the horizon until around 9300 BC, when it would have suddenly popped into view.
But wait, why was any human looking for such a “sign” from heaven? The bonobos and the chimpanzees could see the same star. And with what result?
Whatever these unknown people saw or sensed, many consumed much of their lives celebrating and memorializing it.
Chimpanzees and bonobos somehow failed to answer the call. Hey, meaningless bug. Move on.
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