From Andrew Collins at Ancient Origins.
“The idea that the human soul might take the form of a swan to journey from this world to the next could be one of the oldest fundamental beliefs of human kind, or so suggests a new discovery from the 420,000-year-old cave site of Qesem near Tel Aviv in Israel.
“In 2006 [Andrew Collins] wrote a book titled The Cygnus Mystery . It proposed that humanity’s belief in the soul transforming into a bird at death has since time immemorial been focused around key animistic forms and a certain area of the night sky. Key to these ideas was the swan , connected not just with shamanism and animism for at least 25,000 years, but also arguably with cosmological beliefs surrounding the stars of the Cygnus constellation , and the Milky Way in its role as a road or river to the afterlife.”