Deciphering Rock Art
How to Decipher Rock Art?
Deciphering Rock Art is a complicated task but not impossible! Rock art is not art imitating life; it is a visual record of religious beliefs practiced long ago and not an expression of daily life. Before the invention of writing, the transmission of wisdom and knowledge carried by oral tradition. Myths were the conveyor of ancient wisdom packaged as an imaginary story and at a ripe time, rock art replaced them. Sky worship is apparent in earthly religious expressions, be it a burial site, a tomb, early script or rock art.
Erase modern bias and adopt these guidelines for rock art deciphering :
A General rule: “All rock art are linked to heavens – either directly or through myths”.
• Rock art describes a heavenly story.
• Hunting scenes are cosmic struggles.
• Rock art is sacred and belongs to the realm of faith.
I found repetitive subjects in rock art that can help you to assess the engraved scene. I define them as rock art categories:
• Heavenly Gates
• Calendar engravings
• Seasonal drawings of constellations
• Hunting scenes depicting imaginary struggles
• Regional mythology (creation, heaven)
• The Sun journey myth
For an effective deciphering, frame your rock art into the suggested guidelines or find a new one. Pay attention to small details such as dots that may represent a star or a constellation. That’s how I began my deciphering journey with much success. See examples of deciphered rock art at Articles or in my book Rock Art in Israel available online.
( This post image describes a Moon Calendars Rock Art from Negev Desert Israel).
Yehuda Rotblum 2019