Does History Explain Alternate Geographical Memories?

By | 14 November 13

A West Wing clip highlights some issues that make accurate geography challenging. While this was intended as a humorous scene, some people get lost in the political implications, and label this “liberal propaganda.”

In the context of alternate geography, political agendas (if there are any) aren’t the point.  History — and how it might continue to influence our maps — is relevant.

Here’s the video:

So, I think we need to look at current maps for modern-day references, and then at old maps to see if our memories are based on them.

Maybe our “alternate” memories are based on older maps from childhood geography classes, and those maps have been corrected in recent years.

Let’s rule that out, and then dig deeper.

For example, related to our discussion of Sri Lanka’s location — where it is in relation to India — I’d double-check where it is on maps in this timestream.  The following map is provided courtesy of Google Maps, (c)2013.

Sri Lanka map, (c)2013, Google Maps.

The next is a topological map, courtesy of Uwe Dedering.

Sri Lanka, map courtesy of Uwe Dedering.


So, we know where the country is, and what it looks like, on today’s maps in this timestream.

Then, I’d look at old maps of Ceylon, an earlier name for Sri Lanka. I like to go back as far as I can, and then work forward to the 21st century.

The first map is dated around 1535, by Claudius Ptolemy. To determine the suggested location, a north-south orientation is needed.  First, look at where the mountains are, compared with current maps. Then, Indian geographical references must be used. (Click image to see this map, larger. Graphic will open in a separate tab or window.)


Based on the mountains, I’d guess that this showed Ceylon southwest of India. (Correct me if my reference points are wrong. I didn’t check the smaller islands indicated on that map, and they may suggest a different orientation.)

A map from around 1650 shows only the outline and geography of Ceylon, with no nearby land masses, except very small islands.  So, this map isn’t especially relevant to our study of Ceylon’s location in relation to India.

What caught my interest was how different the shape was, in this map.  I studied where the mountains are indicated, to get a sense of this map’s orientation. (This is one of several illustrations from Plantas das fortalezas, pagodes & ca. da ilha de Ceilão, a book by a cartographer and illustrator.)

Ceylon - 1650 map

Here’s another map from around 1700 – 1710, by Heinrich Scherer. Relative to India, this map suggests the southeast location indicated on maps in our current timestream. (This actual map came from the Maps Collection at the Library of Congress “American Memory” site.)

Ceylon in about 1702.

A 1733 map shows the same placement.

Ceylon map, 1733.

The really old maps are intriguing, but the earlier the map, the more questionable its accuracy.

It looks as if “alternate geography” memories of Sri Lanka’s location aren’t based on 20th century maps that were recently corrected. As far back as 1700 — and perhaps earlier — Sri Lanka (Ceylon) was represented at the southeast side of India.

62 thoughts on “Does History Explain Alternate Geographical Memories?

  1. Alen

    In the film “Dazed and Confused” (1993) at the 15 minute mark a student spins a globe that shows a large landmass off the western coast of Australia.
    This does not exist on any of our maps and atlases nowadays.
    Here are screenshots of the scene with the globe:

      1. Fiona Broome Post author

        I bought a copy of the DVD and I’ll be reviewing it in the next couple of days. I’m hoping to sort out whether it’s a real globe — and, if so, if it’s the brand name on the globe — or if it was created as some kind of easter egg.

        1. Fiona Broome Post author

          I’ve reviewed the DVD carefully. The segment is at the 15 minute mark, and the globe spins multiple times.

          In favor of it being the logo or compass rose of the map: I don’t see a logo/rose anywhere else on the globe. Most globes have them.

          In favor of it being a land mass: No matter how slowly I watch it, the land mass looks irregular. Most logos are either symmetrical or a simple, stylized design that — even blurred — wouldn’t look like that.

          However, I can’t rule out the logo possibility. More research is needed, to identify globes available at that time, and if the globe was altered as a kind of “easter egg” in the movie.


    1. alxhrmn

      I believe the landmass is Paupa New Guinea, is it not?

      1. Kurt Robinson

        Negative. You can see Papua New Guinea in the picture to the north of Australia, off the cape. The eastern part of that island is PNG.

  2. Gurluas

    I’ve been recently looking at an Europe map, and two things caught my attention.
    1. Poland has seemingly grown, it’s roughly the size of Germany all of a sudden?! Poland used to be a tiny country.
    2. I remember reading about the man from Taured, and when doing research about it, Andorra was a region in Spain, now it’s a VERY tiny independent country.

    I am a bit unsure about the latter, but Poland was definitely smaller earlier.

    1. Ithoughtcastrodied

      I don’t know how far back your memories stretch, but I do know Poland annexed land from Germany after World War II.

    2. starbits

      It’s possible the prop department needed to cover up the logo for legal purposes and they decided to do so in a humorous way.

  3. Peter

    This has nothing to do with alternate memories, it all comes down to the specific map projection you look at… The size and location can vary greatly, here is a good website that shows you a comparison of a number of different map styles.

    1. Fiona Broome Post author

      Thanks, Peter! It’s helpful to have references that can help us sort our own errors, media misstatements, and “Mandela Effect” experiences into appropriate contexts.

  4. Julia

    Although as I have stated, I’m not a geography expert by any means, that “blob” on the globe in the movie sure looks like it’s supposed to be a land mass to me. Strangely, I thought there WAS something to the west of Australia. I think I mentioned in my long most on the major memories -links that it was only a few weeks ago that I looked at the globe in my computer room – checking for something about Australia or Indonesia when I noticed the placement of New Zealand and had the eeriest feeling that it wasn’t where I thought it should be. My memory is by no means to be relied on in geography – it was just a feeling and it surprised me that I’d even think about it. (This was before I had heard the term “the Mandela effect” or saw this website.) The blob in the “Dazed and Confused” globe is actually where I would have guessed New Zealand was, though that’s a huge blob! And it’s hard to tell, but it looks like New Zealand might be represented on movie globe where it is now. I asked my 79 year old mother where New Zealand was in relation to Australia. She thought for a moment and then guessed “west” – for whatever that’s worth.

  5. JM

    Some one should get a high quality blu-ray screen cap. It’s the only way to see what that Island really is.

  6. Vivek narain

    What i remember studying in school is that australian continent consisted of 2 countries australia and newzealand and was located in middle of south pacific.Now that the erstwhile continent has moved towards asia and infact has indian ocean on its western flank,its but natural that newzealand has to shift from west of australia to the east.Some remember newzealand at north west of australia which in present scheme of things would mean newzealand being intrinsic part of southeast asia,bang in the gap between indonesia and singapore,a very absurd notion indeed.The present newzealand doesn’t belong to any continent,submerged continent zealandia is cited and so is ‘oceania’ region.I don’t remember anything like zealandia or oceania.

  7. Vivek narain

    That globe should never have been in contention,its like being in a rut or worse, acting out the stories of enid blyton,figuring out mysteries in a most story like manner.Mandela effect deserves better references than prospecting for gold or a goldmine with a childish doodlebug.I don’t like to sound unsympathetic but such things make the subject look like a plot for soap opera that no soap manufacturer would care to sponsor.Alternate or false memories are an intrigue and many references that can enrich the subject can be sourced from the writings of prodigal authors of 20th century,and i have learned that the thriller genre is a very rich source of the contemplation of human enigmas.

    1. Fiona Broome Post author


      I’m not sure why you’d say that. We have stories that suggest New Zealand in an alternate location relative to Australia. A movie shows a globe with an unidentified, large land mass. It could fit the alternate memories of those who recall New Zealand at or near that location.

      Why wouldn’t we want to know the validity of that prop?

      Relative to the New Zealand discussion, the globe in Dazed & Confused has no less value than the maps we’re studying in connection with Sri Lanka’s alternate locations.

      The image on that globe might have been an intentional Easter egg, just for fun. As recently suggested, it might have been placed to conceal branding.

      Or, it could explain the prevalence of alternate New Zealand memories.

      For all we know, a globe was manufactured with a glaring error, and that mistake misled many students (including me) before the related globes were recalled. (I don’t recall New Zealand that large or in that location, but others might. I’m allowing for infinite possibilities.)

      Our research should include:

      1. Whether that was a real globe or an altered prop.
      2. If it was a real globe, what the unidentified land mass is.
      3. If that was a land mass represented on a real (unaltered) globe, whether it was a mistaken printing.
      4. If it was a deliberate representation of an actual land mass on an unaltered, manufactured globe, do other maps from that era — no matter how obscure — also feature that same land mass.

      As far as I’m concerned, dismissing the globe without examination would be a disservice to the Mandela Effect community.

      I’m not quite ready to give the New Zealand topic its own post at this website, but it’s probably going to occur in the near future.

      Fiona Broome

      1. S

        New Zealand consists of two Islands (North and South), I don’t know of this debunks the idea or if people remember it as a solid mass to the West.

  8. Vivek narain

    But fiona, You are missing the whole point,i was one of the earliest to say that newzealand existed on western side(sep 28 major memories).The crux of the matter is not the relative position of newzealand vs australia,but the larger picture of australia’s location in the pacific,newzealand simply tugs along westernly in the altered geography of parent Australia.

    1. Fiona Broome Post author


      At this website, the sequence usually is:

      1. Someone notes an apparent timeline anomaly.
      2. Others contribute their opinions, related memories, and related alternate memories.
      3. We check possible normal explanations.
      4. We note those that seem reasonable. If nothing fully explains the most significant memories, we continue to gather data.
      5. If no answer is found, the topic becomes potential evidence for the Mandela Effect.

      In this case, we’ve been through steps 1 and 2: You and others noted New Zealand in alternate locations.

      Now, we’re at step 3: We’re looking for normal explanations for some or all of those memories.

      A widely-distributed (but faulty) globe could have influenced geography studies, both formal and informal.

      We have possible evidence of a faulty globe.

      Now, the questions are: Was that an actual globe that might have been in distribution to schools and homes, or was it an altered prop for the movie? If it’s a real globe, does the land mass on that globe fit any alternate memories for New Zealand? If that globe was real, could it explain some of the reported memories?

      I’m not ready to assume that Australia is always a parent of New Zealand, in alternate realities. The reports have largely focused on New Zealand, not Australia’s position in the Pacific.

      The two may be related, or they may be distinctly different topics.

      In general, I first study what’s reported, with some consideration for relational issues.

      In the case of alternate geography, Expanding Earth theories might apply. But, before we go down that path, it’s smart to see if erroneous maps could explain alternate memories regarding New Zealand’s location, including Australia as a reference point. (That’s similar to my research into past maps showing Sri Lanka.)

      A simple (but widespread) educational error must be eliminated before making the leap to other theories, including Mandela Effect.

      Fiona Broome

      1. tj

        Alright now I’m really freaked out not only is Sri Lanka not where I remember it being, the island nation
        of Cuba is now at least twice as large as I remember it being and way closer to the Yucatan
        peninsula . It dominates the Caribbean Islands now. Some people will say it has to do with map projections
        of differing sorts, but as a child I was often absorbed in maps and had / have a fairly good memory
        of where everything was relative to every thing else . I think that a conspiracy of cartographers
        highly unlikely ,given that transoceanic commerce depended on accurate sizes and positions
        for the safe transport of the spoils of empires.

        On a different note for the people who find all this bewildering check out the youtube of
        Super string theorists James Gates and Neil deGrasse Tyson talking about whether
        we could be living in a simulated reality. There is a short version of about 6 minutes
        that encapsulates his ideas.

  9. JM

    Good points Fiona.

    What is strange about the globe scene is that the globe is centered to the viewer and is spun right in front of us, so it is something that we are meant to see. Until someone gets a higher quality screenshot we will have to speculate.

    It would be worth looking at the other maps and atlases in the classroom scenes to see if their logos are also ‘covered up’, or logos on any other props for that matter.

    1. Fiona Broome Post author


      Those are excellent points. I’ll go through my movie collection and see what other classroom scenes I might have, or anything showing a globe. I’ll look for really old Disney shows, as well, because I’m pretty sure they sometimes opened with a globe, and someone spinning it enough to find the country to point ot.

      Mostly, I’m looking in the same era as Dazed & Confused was filmed — and in that movie, itself — to see how often they covered branding. And, I may see if I can find the prop manager for that film, to ask about the globe. I’m still inclined to think it’s kind of an Easter egg, but on the chance that it’s a real, unaltered globe, I want to know more.

      (I have checked Easter egg sites and a list of errors in the movie, and — so far — no mention of the globe.)


  10. JM

    It’s also interesting that they are discussing Gilligan’s Island in class and the bathroom before the globe scene. Theme of a fictional island.

    I study movie synchronicities. Another one to look at is Sliding Doors (1998)
    In the scene where she shifts realities you see a train numbered 777.

    777 refers to the Thelemic Tree of life, the ‘lightning flash of creation:

  11. Vivek narain

    Hi fiona, sorry if i’ve made some unsavoury and uncalled for comments,but you’ll to agree they were somewhat witty.Coming to the topic,i have to say that i have a tendency to take a bird’s eye view whenever things get murky.What i have deduced is that geographical memories are not experienced by those living in close vicinity of the contentious location and that a distance of at least 1000 miles is generally necessary,in this enigma of oceania region the effect should start to occur from india china onwards.Also the alive again phenomena is almost entirely U.S centric,even if mandela or goodall or tankman or gaddafi were not american, they had aroused familiarity with americans.About 20 yrs back i had done a similar study of rebirth cases of india and found that almost all the cases occured within 5o to 100 miles.

  12. Vivek narain

    Either the matrix has decided to drop its subtlety or has become nonchalant towards its enigmas or better still apathy is overwhelming mankind as well as the matrix.Technology has certainly become awe inspiring and many people are more amazed at skype call than britain shifting to south west of spain

  13. Vivek narain

    Not for me either,not in this timeline.we used to say in the womb of future but in this multiverse concept we can do away with this word ‘time’, Taggart proved the unreality of time a century back.Even entropy can do without the arrow of time in this changed scenario,the cup that broke to pieces irrevocably can now be put together with the help of 3d printer,times have changed and the word ‘time’ has become a metaphor.So i should say britain has shifted in another reality,again if there is such a thing as reality.

  14. Vivek narain

    Hi fiona, This may or may not be relevant but the whole of oceania region from johnston atoll to australia,has been the most abused region for wmd testing of all sorts;nuclear,chemical,biological,by all the western super powers,britain france us,the longitude of johnston lies similar to australia’s at 139 degrees,the tests were carried out for about 50 yrs from 1946 to 1996.Being the largest testing ground of deadliest assortment of materials,the contamination of waters was obvious,could be australia was shifted westwards by some means to avert mass destruction,could be there is something to this, timeline shift starting from 1995.

  15. Vivek narain

    Hi fiona, Done some further research as you suggested and collected a truckload of anomalies and enigmas.Australia belongs to the most isolated region of earth,lies between the south indian state of tamilnadu(sri lanka’s neighbor)and south american nation peru.tamilnadu is supposed to be the cradle of civilization and the matrix of all sciences,racially tamilnadu is closest to the australoid race and yet not the aboriginal type infact the dravidian race of tamilnadu doesn’t belong to any known races of earth;negroid or caucasian or mongoloid.Peruvian deserts where nazca lines exist is the most unique place on this planet,windless rainless where 4 inch deep lines have survived since time immemorial,a perfect place to put markers for the visitors from deep space.What i tentatively propose is ETs landed on australia and colonised tamilnadu with their elite and dumped the menials on australia,put the markers on peru.The interesting thing this theory consolidates is that australia has been the dumping ground par exellence.british dumped their outcasts on the island then carried out nuclear tests,U.S and france carried out their own tes of various nefarious weapons on north oceania and yet australia and newzealand are very beautiful places of earth.A perfect plot for b grade soap opera,what do you say?

    1. Fiona Broome Post author

      Vivek, that’s excellent research! This brings many possible explanations to some major issues. Thank you!

      1. Vivek narain

        ‘It’s about the most inaccessible spot you could imagine on the face of the earth’, straight from the horse’s mouth,may be we are not nutters as to the facts.west of perth, the location we were knee deep in, is indeed something to reckon with.Malaysia plane might or might not be involved,but the enigma has unwittingly come into open as to the location.

  16. Gurluas

    I’m a Dane and I may have noticed a change.

    Notice this map.
    The island between Fyn, Sjælland and Jylland…I don’t remember it, I never knew it was even there until I saw it today, and being a Dane I’ve seen maps of Denmark MANY times.

    The two islands between Sweden and Denmark around northern Jylland…I also don’t remember those.
    I recall it just being ocean with very small islands close to the coast.

  17. Vivek narain

    A week has gone since the prime ministers of malaysia and australia notified the world about the fate and location of missing plane.Despite scores of planes and ships of half a dozen most advanced nations searching the identified location,not one has been able to photograph a single objects among supposedly 300 assorted pieces, leave alone picking out something.This is turning out to be more frustrating than proving the mandela effect.Or is it that the technological prowess has been exaggerated by the select coterie of nations to perpetuate a reign of dominance.If the whole event is mired in conspiracy then mandela effect may as well be part of same,if not, even then mandela effect is not more incredulous than a plane load of people wiped out for no reason or by the whim of a minion of state machinery.At least we must take a lesson to be wary of big mouths who don’t hear their own voice.

    1. Vivek narain

      Continuing with this saga of ancient aliens,the chile peruvian region is in the grip of recurring quakes with the massive one 8.2 today.Of the three regions the only unaffected place so far is south india including the south of south india the erstwhile location of sri lanka.Let’s be attentive to any signs, subtle or otherwise.

      1. Fiona Broome Post author

        VERY good observations, Vivek! Thanks for being so vigilant about watching for anomalies connected with this phenomenon.

        1. Vivek narain

          Fiona, Dug out a real whopper from australia.In 1967 joan lindsay published a novel ‘picnic at hanging rock’,the novel was set on valentine’s day feb 14 saturday(in current timeline it should have been wednesday).Three girls and their teacher go missing and later a girl is found but disoriented,the last chapter of the book disclosing the mystery was published posthumously in 1987 in which lindsay purported a portal to alternate universe in mount macedon victoria australia.various instances of alternate realities contained in the book were found by researchers in the ensuing years,a mandela effect classic?

          1. Fiona Broome Post author

            Vivek… Wow! That’s utterly amazing. I was vaguely familiar with the story, but didn’t realize the context. VERY cool, thanks!

        2. Vivek narain

          Fiona, The triad is complete now a marine scientist Alec Duncan says MH370 might have crashed off southern tip of south india following a british lady sailor’s testimony.

  18. JM

    The new search area for the Malaysia plane is right where that Dazed and Confused mystery Island is. Directly west of Perth.

    1. Fiona Broome Post author

      Very cool, JM! I’ve been tracking the search in relation to the “vile vortex” (or “devil’s triangle”) near that location, as well.

  19. JM

    The whole world is now focused on the spot of that mystery Island.
    Reality is bending more and more.

  20. MissLyly

    Regarding the globe scene in “Dazed and Confused”, I noticed a few more anomalies in addition to the mystery island west off Australia. I looked frame by frame, with brightness enhancement/contrast setting and I saw that:

    1- Florida peninsula is gone;
    2- Panama channel is open;
    3- New Zealand is gone;
    4- Madagascar shape seems to be different;
    5- China “border” seems to extend farther to the north and Mongolia doesn’t exists anymore;
    6- And of course, the Mystery Island near a vile vortex and right into the search area for flight MH370.

    Indeed, the globe is too blurry and it could be hard to look for more details. I recall some comments here suggesting that New Zealand may have other locations and in another comment, someone was baffled by the existence of a country called Mongolia. So, maybe this globe refers to a “real” common timeline existing somewhere and from which many people recall as well. I love to think that movies may have some hints on hidden truths.

  21. JM

    Good Post MissLyly

    What’s interesting is the guy who originally discovered the Mystery Island claims that he had a motorcycle accident back in 2007, and then started noticing small changes in reality. State flags changing, he doesn’t remember the Ohio state flag as a pennant for example.

    I take a positive view on these reality shifts though, if you listen to Bashar (channeled info) it all starts to makes sense, we are constantly shifting and we are in an acceleration. He says that synchronicities and miracles will soon become the order of the day. You just have to drop the baggage that doesn’t belong to you. Lighten up to get enlightened, and ultimately be more and more of your true self. The more you do all this with a playful nature, the easier it is.

    1. Fiona Broome Post author

      JM, That’s fascinating! Also, thanks for the positive message, too. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed or even distraught by things changing unexpectedly. Seeing it through a playful filter makes all the difference in the world! (So to speak.)

      Cheerfully, Fiona

  22. Vivek narain

    Fiona, Another gem from victoria,on early hours of 8th august ’93 Mrs. Kelly cahill and her husband while driving thru foot hills of dandenongs victoria australia,saw a big ufo land in a paddock facing them and kelly observed beings inside.What makes this case special is that two other cars were behind them and they also confirmed kelly’s account.The incidence was verified by prestigious researchers.

  23. Vivek narain

    It’s literaly skeletons in the cupboard called ‘melbourne’.In april 6 1966 near a school in westall melbourne victoria,2 ufos landed and were witnessed by children(it’s in ats today),picnic at hanging rock was written soon afterwards,kelly cahill came many yrs later.What is noteworthy is that victoria lies on southern tip of pacific front of australia the remotest possible location in current dispensation of australia,ufos land on paddock so cattle mutilation and crop circle are alluded.whether the skeletons are real or man made, the cupboard of melbourne victoria is full of them.

  24. MissLyly

    Look at that bizarre shape of New Zealand and Australia in the Universal’s opening theme from the movie “The Dark Crystal” (1982). I really got chills…


    New Zealand looks to be closer and has a weird shape; Australia lost its Gulf of Carpentaria and got a new one in the north west. I don’t think it has something to do with geographic knowledge of that time, because my grandfather has a 1973 globe and all look the same as in Google Earth.

  25. Dakota

    You’ve got to be careful when dealing with old maps though. Anything pre-19th century must be taken with a grain of salt. For example, try to look for Japan. On a lot of maps it doesn’t even exist and when it does it looks nothing like the real thing. Cartography can be pretty difficult when all you have are ships.
    Those two movie sequences though, wow. I remember Australia etc the way it is now but still… wow.

    1. Fiona Broome Post author

      Good point, Dakota! Mostly, I use old maps to try and figure out where some of these mismatched ideas come from. I keep looking for old maps that might have been in someone’s home (or an old schoolbook) and mistakenly used as a reference. (My first tack when dealing with something that might just be a confusion, is to see if I can find where it came from. Something logical that explains it.)

    2. MissLyly

      It’s funny that you mention Japan because it is located due east of China and south of Korean peninsula on that globe. I didn’t notice it first but I double checked and bam! It puzzled me.

      Take a look:


      1. Fiona Broome Post author

        MissLyly, at the moment, that link looks like leads to the full length (bootleg?) copy of the Dark Crystal. Repost your link with a note about where the scene is (the time stamp) that shows the map, so people can fast-forward and freeze the screen. Thanks.

        1. MissLyly

          It’s right at the beginning, the Universal Pictures globe, 0:05 – 0:15 seconds mark. My apologies for all confusion. I watched it in HD, took a screenshot and I enhanced brightness and contrast.

          5 – 15 seconds mark.

  26. Brian

    So, after discovering this website about a week ago, i read most of the articles and comments. I swear this article just a few days ago was talking about Sri Lanka being due south of the tip of india but that some people remembered it being off to the southeast. Now its southeast??

  27. Brian

    So, im now noticing several differences in what i remember of the world map and where things are now on world maps.

    Japan seems to have moved further north… twice.. in relation to china and the koreas. In addition to Sri Lanka changing, the maldives were further sw, like halfway to africa. And Madagascar was further south.

    The Philipines were east northeast of the current position. Australia and new zealand were closer. India was larger.

  28. Su

    I always thought that Australia was in the middle of the South Pacific Ocean. Like somewhere in between South East Asia and South America.
    Well, until about a few years ago when I was goofing on Google maps looking at foreign countries, I was quite shocked to find out it’s actually near to SEA. Hmms.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Protected with IP Blacklist CloudIP Blacklist Cloud