In late December, I drove out to the middle of nowhere to see The Georgia Guidestones. Hours away from major cities and Interstate highways, the Georgia Guidestones are a series of granite tablets, wedged into the ground to form a cross. Commandments for humanity are etched into the faces of each stone, one language per face. It’s a haunting, eerie site. The inscriptions read like a madman’s dystopian nightmare. Constructed in 1980, no one is sure who funded the site’s creation, or why they were built.
After I had gotten out of my car to look around, two more cars pulled up, and three more would arrive before I left. I was surprised at how many people were coming out to see this structure, far out in rural America. One visitor told me his wife didn’t believe they were real. She quickly went back to their car as he continued to look around. I asked him what he thought. “I don’t like it,” he replied, “with everything that’s going on in the world right now.”
The Guidestones are not a tourist trap. I didn’t see keychains, pendants or postcards featuring the stones at the local gas stations. There are no signs pointing to their location. Driving south into the town of Elberton, a billboard on the side of a building reads the “Elberton Granite Capital of the World.” Tombstones, both elaborate and simple, were below the sign.
The inscriptions are written in eight languages: English, Spanish, Swahili, Hindi, Hebrew, Arabic and Traditional Chinese. The full text of the English tablet is as follows:
Maintain humanity under 500,000,000
in perpetual balance with nature
Guide reproduction wisely
improving fitness and diversity
Unite humanity with a living
and all things
with tempered reason
Protect people and nations
with fair laws and just courts
Let all nations rule internally
resolving external disputes
in a world court
Avoid petty laws and useless
Balance personal rights with
seeking harmony with the
Be not a cancer on the earth
leave room for nature
leave room for nature
There are 7.795 billion souls on the planet Earth, as of 20221. Per the first inscription on the Guidestones, a population of 500 million is approximately 6.4% of the current global population. Per the second inscription of preserving diversity, let’s assume the stones are guiding us to a world where population is reduced evenly among all nations. Reduction to 6.4% of current population estimates would give us the following distribution for the twelve largest countries by population:
|#||Country||Country Population (2020)||Reduction to 6.4%|
|Total Worldwide Population (2020)||Reduction to 6.4%|
Even suggesting such a reduction in the world’s population is frightening. The population of both China and India would shrink to less than one-third of the United States’ current population. There is no way such changes could ever occur without either an extraordinary cataclysmic disaster, unprecedented famine, or an authoritarian genocide that would make Stalin and Pol Pot look like honorable leaders.
What are the Georgia Guidestones? Are they just the rambling autistic thoughts of a rich madman from the early 80s? Are they a product funded by aristocrats and secret societies who believe the inscriptions outline a path to a better future? Are they an elaborate prank by a millionaire troll seeking to freak out the world? Are they a warning; a prophecy of dark times that are coming ahead? If it is a joke, it’s an extraordinarily expensive and elaborate one.
The Guidestones may have been constructed in the 80s, but the message inscribed on them seems to transcend time to our current dystopian reality. Allusions to being in balance with nature, or encouraging good international governance, ring hollow when juxtaposition to authoritarian messages of population control, and placing human rights behind those of the collective. When taken in totality, the message of the stones is a horrific one. It is a guide to a pagan world where the chief end of man is dictated by political prerogatives, not by freedom, God, individualism or sound moral convictions. The tablets are an eerily deranged message. They should only be viewed as a massive do not enter sign. If carried to fruition, their guidance could only lead to atrocities.
“If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—forever.” -George Orwell, 1984