The Ark of the Covenant

Any particular reason why This structure in Ethiopia cannot be scanned from the outside to establish just what is in it?

Surely the technology exists to render some sense of the objects held within?

Inquiring minds want to know. :slight_smile:


I dunno. Maybe an angry mob or two tearing you a new one for insulting their religion? Or the local cops (or army) beating the hoo-ha outta you for the same cause?

What’s supposed to be in it? Is there a story to this?

I’m unclear about what your inferring. Are you saying this building is or holds the Ark of the Covenant?


Note the title of the OP: The Ark of the Covenant – that’s what’s supposed to be in it. I saw a documentary on the History channel or A & e about a legend that the Ark is inside this structure. As I recall, a holy man is always present to guard against any curious folks who’d like to confirm the legend, and no one is allowed inside. I would think that the technology exists to make a guess of what might be inside, but it would require the cooperation of the holy men/officials of the religious sect, and that isn’t likely.

Is there any remotely plausibly explanation for not showing it to anybody, besides the obvious one of it not being there?

Well, if you let someone peek inside the building, then they’ll want to peek inside the ark and then… You do remember the scene from Indiana Jones don’t you?

I don’t recall the explanation for why no one could get in to see it – some arcane regilious dogma, I suppose. Personally, I go for the obvious one of it not being there.

In the time of Moses, when the ark was kept in the tabernacle, and later when it was moved into the temple in Solomon’s time, it was kept in the innermost sanctum, the “Holy of Holies,” where only the chief priest could enter, and he could only enter once a year.

If this building does contain the Ark of the Covenant (and I’m not venturing an opinion one way or the other), it would be considered a very holy object to whatever religious group maintains the shrine. To open it to public view and turn it into a tourist attraction would likely be considered blasphemy in their view.

The national spy stuff agency reports that satellite imaging has shown that the ark of the coventent isn’t on the roof. We can see inside solid objects but I don’t know of any methods that have high enough resolution that will work remotely. The Star Trek future isn’t here yet.

Yeah. She was hot.

And just imagine the possibilities this thing could have for riot control and taking out insurgents. Just open the lid and watch your problems melt away.

This Straight Dope Staff Report may be of interest: What happened to the Ark of the Covenant?

If anything, Dex is too kind. Hancock, best known for his Atlantis theorizing, is part of the lunatic fringe.

It holds The Colonel’s secret recipe.

Did the Emperor get a new closet to hold is new clothes?

Darn! that would be his new clothes.

The Knights Templar thought it was the grail because they saw the grail-shaped lantern on the roof.

I couldn’t agree more about Hancock. However, the staff report you quoted gives the false impression that the unlikely story about the Ark being in Ethiopia was first proposed by Hancock. In fact it’s a long-established part of Ethiopian Christianity. The story is also important for Rastafarianism: Haile Selassie is believed to be a descendant of Menelik, the son of Solomon and the queen of Sheba who brought the Ark to Ethiopia, and therefore a descendant of King David, as the Messiah must be.

They probably have something in there, but whether it’s really the Ark, or a fake, or a replica, or an ark but not The Ark, who knows?

As for not letting anyone see it, think about this: what would happen if they let some scientists in there, and these scientists came out and said “Yep, there’s an ark in there, and it really is thousands of years old”?

What would happen is that a zillion people would descend on that place in the biggest pilgrimage since the Crusades. Given the way crowds behave, they’d get into the shrine, and the Ark would probably get damaged or stolen.

If they’re trying to keep it safe, then publicity is the last thing they want.

That Sect has always been big on making replicas. They have several other replicas of the Ark (which they do admit are replicas, so…). It is VERY likely that at the very least, there is an Ark replica in there. Thus even if we could & did scan, we wouldn’t know if it was real or a replica.

My WAG is that it’s a replica, the provenance is highly doubtful. :dubious:

I’d give the real Ark as follows; 49.98% the Priests ;j hid it in the caves near Jerusalem, 49% it was captured and melted down, and .01% the Copts have it, with the other .01% = 'anything goes".

I saw a History Channel documentary on this very place that claimed a local legend states that anyone besides the one high priest who sees the Ark will instantly burst into flames.