Mu

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Map of Mu in the South Pacific, by James Churchward 1927

Mu, Lost Continent; apparently identical with the lost continent of Lemuria and the land of R'lyeh in the Pacific, or perhaps Atlantis in the Atlantic.

Origin: Concept and name, as well as the language Naacal, were proposed by 19th-century traveler and writer Augustus Le Plongeon, who claimed that several ancient civilizations, such as those of Egypt and Meso-America, were created by refugees from Mu — which he located in the Atlantic Ocean. This concept was popularized and expanded by James Churchward, who asserted that Mu was once located in the Pacific.


In the Mythos: Heresies and Controversies

Mu, as described by Plongeon and Churchward based on Plongeon's claimed translation of the Naacal Tablets, is a sunken continent that may have existed in the Atlantic or South Pacific between twenty thousand and twelve thousand years ago. It was inhabited by humans, as well as many pre-human, sub-human, meta-human, and inhuman beings; the human population of Mu is thought to live on in the Welsh, Egyptian, Indian, and Meso-American peoples, while the language Naacal lives on in several Mythos tomes and artifacts upon which the characters have been carved. According to Plongeon and Churchward, the human (or quasi-human) ruling-class of Mu were the Naacal (or "Exalted"), or the Nagas of Indian legend.


Ghatanothoa

Ghatanothoa lived in the mountains of Mu when that continent existed, having arrived or been brought there from Yuggoth. It was worshipped by a hundred priests, who possessed great privileges, but were required to appease the monster so that it would not emerge from its secret lair, endangering the people.

(H.P. Lovecraft and Hazel Heald, "Out of the Aeons" 1935.)

Lloigor

Among Mu's inhabitants were the lloigor and their human (or humanoid) slaves and cultists. The lloigor and their slaves seem to have been the two primary races that lived on Mu, at least by the final days of the Continent. The lloigor, in the form of invisible "vortexes of energy", fed off of the humanoid population to survive. Lloigor can also discharge huge amounts of energy as explosions of destruction, ultimately causing the destruction of Mu.

(August Derleth and Mark Schorer, "The Lair of the Star Spawn" 1932.)


R'lyeh and Lemuria

Mu may be identical with the lost continent of Lemuria, also said to be located in the South Pacific, and possibly etymologically related (LeMUria), as well as the lost land of R'lyeh described by the Cthulhu cult in a way that would place R'lyeh at the southern edge of Mu and/or Lemuria.

(Theosophical pseudoscience/mysticism, combined with fan invention/theory based on the likelihood that Lovecraft was inspired by the then current Lemuria/Mu theories to invent R'lyeh as a lost continent that rises again from the destruction that sank it.)


Atlantis

Sometimes, Mu is placed in the Atlantic ocean, where it is associated with Mu. Helena P. Blavatsky describes in The Secret Doctrine (1888) the progeny of the Lemurians as the human Atlanteans, who were brought down by their use of black magic, their continent of Atlantis sinking beneath the waves 850,000 years ago.

(Theosophical pseudoscience/mysticism, including Helena P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine 1888)

The Identity of the Nagas, the Great Race at Pnakotus, and the Serpent People

"Naga", a variant of "Naacal" ("Exalted"), is a Sanskrit word for a deity, or class of entity, or being taking the form of a serpent). The nagas are described as the powerful, splendid, wonderful and proud semi-divine race that can assume their physical form either as human, partial human-serpent or the whole serpent.

The identity of the Nagas is not entirely clear; based on descriptions in different legends, they might be identified variously as:

Serpent People: The serpent-like "Naga" inhabitants of Mu might be identified with Serpent People, who may have fled the destruction of Mu deep into the earth, where they are said to live on today, patiently regathering their strength and plotting their eventual return to the surface, to rule the world again as they did of old, at the height of their civilization at Mu.

Great Race of Yith: There may be some sinister relationship between the Naacal ("Exalted"), Danavas of Lemurian legend, and the Nagas of Mu legend, and the seat of power for the Great Race of Yith at Pnakotus (or "Exalted Pnakotic Race", if you will); compare the similarity in pronunciation of the three words, which may not be coincidental; remnants of the Great Race may have persisted in their habitation of their Pacific civilization long past the extinction of their own antique civilization, perhaps inhabiting new bodies in the form of the Serpent People, in which they would nurture and shape the destinies of the human race from its cradle to its grave, upon which the Great Race will take the Earth again as their home in the far more comfortable bodies of the terrible race that will inherit the Earth from humans, with the way prepared for them by a humanity whose works and legacies were shaped by the Great Race themselves from the very beginning, at Mu.

(Augustus Le Plongeon and James Churchward, mixed with fan invention and theory.)

Midian and the Exodus from Mu

Upon the destruction of Mu, the survivors fled to far-flung corners of the earth; according to Plongeon and Churchward, these refugees, the Naga (or "Exalted") would become the ancestors of the modern populations of India, Meso-America, Egypt, and Wales.

However, some modern interpretations of the strange histories and myths described in Cultes Des Goules and other tomes suggest that the Ghouls, Tcho-Tchos, and Deep Ones may have shared origins as one people, the refugees from Mu ("Midian"), scattering after the continent's destruction to strange corners of the world beyond the edges of ordinary human civilization, to become the hidden peoples of the nightmares and campfire stories of peoples from around the world, living on in legend and myth as the Vampires, shape-shifters, ogres, "nature-spirits", and night-monsters that have long haunted the populations they settled near.

In her massive tome The Secret Doctrine (1888), Helena P. Blavatsky described a history originating millions of years ago with the "Lords of Flame" (corresponding with the D'Erlette's claims that the ancestors of the Ghouls took the form of "gods" formed from "smokeless flame"), and goes on to discusses five "Root Races" which have existed on earth, each one dying out in an earth-shattering cataclysm, including the inhabitants of Mu (which Blavatsky apparently identified with Lemuria).

(Fan invention/theory.)


Other Lost Continents

See Lemuria for a detailed list of legendary Pacific lost continents/islands which might be synonymous with Mu, including Lemuria, Rutas, Bolutu, Hawaiki, Hiva, and Kumari Kandam.

See also Atlantis for a discussion of Atlantic lost continents/islands which have been confused with Lemuria, and by extension with Mu.

Keeper Notes

Associated Mythos Elements

References