Just off the shores of Lake Titicaca, Peru, rests a peculiar wonder that defies explanation. In a region known by the Peruvian Indians as “The City of the Gods,” measuring in a perfect, twenty-three-foot square, is the Puerta de Haya Marca—the “Gate of the Gods”—an absolutely bizarre stamp embedded in the side of a flat, natural rock formation on the border of Bolivia. Inside the square, at the bottom center, is another recessed impression within the rock (standing just under six feet high), which, from a distance, resembles a kind of keyhole.
Upon closer inspection, the “keyhole” appears more like a door, and in the very center of it is a small, circular dent/depression in the back wall. Local legend says that the Amaru Meru (sometimes “Amaru Muru”), the Incan priest of the “Temple of the Seven Rays,” ran away into the mountains to flee the Spanish Conquistadors who had come to rob and plunder the Incan tribes. With him, he held a small disc, the “Key of the Gods of the Seven Rays.” Once a safe distance from the temple, the Amaru Meru conducted a ritual with his fellow priests, using the small disc to open a portal within the flat rock, through which he completely disappeared. (Some versions of this tale claim that the Amaru Meru was fleeing alongside several familiar priests of the Temple of the Seven Rays. Others say he fled alone, discovering the doorway while in hiding, and happened upon shamans guarding the doorway, who thereafter agreed to perform a portal ritual with him when they saw the disc he held. Either way, both versions of the tale suggest that the doorway was a giant image carved into the mountains well before the priest fled the temple.) This event, the legend says, turned this solid rock into a “stargate.” According to local lore, this priest was the first of other “kings” who came to earth from heavenly locations specifically associated with the Pleiades (Apollo) and Orion (Osiris).
Other folklore offered by the Native Indians say the site is “a gateway to the lands of the Gods” through which, in their ancient past, great heroes arrived and then departed with a “key” that could open the mysterious doorway. In some adaptations, these ancient men had left this world to begin life anew amidst other interdimensional heroes, occasionally returning to “inspect the land of the kingdom.”[i]
Nobody knows who crafted this door-shaped marvel. Theories abound as to its origin, and for as many archaeologists who claim the site is merely an abandoned building project by the Incas, just as many archaeologists have reason to believe the site predates Incan occupancy—and some note the doorway carving is not typical of sporadic Incan design. Because the site is considered an ancient archaeological site, and because it is protected by the Peruvian government, further excavations potentially revealing its secrets and origin have not yet occurred.[ii] However, as of this writing, similar to the Göbekli Tepe site we will briefly discuss, there has never been any evidence of an earlier/ancient settlement nearby.
(As an interesting sidebar, the mysterious Gate of the Gods exists within close proximity to the “Stone Forest” of the Markawasi [Marcahuasi] plateau in the Andes Mountains. The Stone Forest is a wealth of oddities in and of itself, sporting gigantic carvings and sculptures strongly resembling human faces and heads [as well as many animals], many of which could easily be interpreted to represent various ancient world cultures. Among which is one sculpture that mirrors the Face on Mars. Another, the famous “Monument of Humanity” at Markawasi, is so named for the “four distinct races of humanity which can be found on this 85-foot-high monument.”[iii] It is especially fascinating that four different races of people would be sculpted from the same rock so nearby the gate that legendarily became the portal for “ancient heroes” that had the access to seeing whatever “races of humanity” they wished to all at once. There doesn’t seem to be many available explanations for how an ancient civilization would be so familiar with other races of people—and consider them important enough to carve onto giant stones—all within the same timeframe and location. Yet, assuming there is validity to the portal theories, interdimensional traveling, and carving as a way of “documenting” such an event, it is worthy of note.)
To this day, rumors abound that light can often still be observed behind, or emanating through, the disc-shaped dent within the Gate of the Gods. Many of the local residents “refuse to go near it.”[iv] Some travel great distances to lay hands on the back wall or inside frame of the small door, “a feeling of energy flowing [through them]” upon contact, “as well as strange experiences such as visions of stars, columns of fire, and the sounds of unusual rhythmic music.”[v]
Not far away from this gate is another notable “portal,” as they say, known as the Gate of the Sun.
Tiahuanaco and the Gate of the Sun
The archway (or “gate”) of Tiahuanaco (often spelled alternatively: “Tiwanaku”), near La Paz, Bolivia (and like the Gate of the Gods, located close by Lake Titicaca) is a puzzling discovery on many counts. To begin, it raises the same questions as Baalbek and Göbekli Tepe regarding the hows and whos of its megalithic size and expert composition. The gate is 9.8 feet tall, 13 feet in width, and weighs approximately 10 tons (20,000 pounds). Though split into two at some point in history, it was originally constructed from a single stone. Many sources online say this stone could date to around 12000 BC.[vi]
But the iconic Gate of the Sun piece is not by any stretch the largest stone moved at the surrounding archaeological site, an area said to be an “oxygen-deprived” and “inhospitable” thirteen-thousand-foot elevation, housing two-hundred-ton monoliths in the structures some ten miles away from the quarry.[vii] These ruins are unique in their cutting-edge geometric design, the techniques of which have only just been acquired within the last one hundred years by our modern-day builders.
ViewZone journalist Dan Eden documents:
Some of the stones show evidence of tooling that simply could not have been done with any known ancient technology.…
[And much lower in the article:] There is no known technology in all the ancient world that could have transported stones of such massive weight and size. The Andean people of 500 AD, with their simple reed boats, could certainly not have moved them. Even today, with all the modern advances in engineering and mathematics, we could not fashion such a structure.[viii]
Unlike previously mentioned sites, there is enough evidence here of settlement, resources, intelligence, and planning, that the question of “who” becomes an all-new opposite extreme. Whereas we might wonder how Neolithic, nomadic, wandering wheat-ploughers could possibly comprehend the Göbekli Tepe structures we discuss later in this entry, at the Tiahuanaco site we find ourselves asking how a race of humans that prove to be in some ways more intelligent than we are today could possibly have lived an estimated ten thousand to sixteen thousand years before Christ walked the earth.[ix] Although archaeologists and historians agree that this site was built by “Tiahuanacans,” there is no easy explanation for what kind of people—or race—they were, exactly. Set apart from other ancient civilizations as a result of their advanced intelligence, it is no surprise that many individuals associate them with extraterrestrials.
Extraterrestrial connections were first suggested by Eric von Daniken and have been perpetuated by discoveries of the apparent advanced knowledge that Tiahuanacan engineers seemed to possess—thousands of years ahead of other cultures.
Analysis of this culture has shown that ancient Tiahuanacan scientists knew that the earth was a globe which rotated on its axis and they calculated exactly the times of eclipses—even those not visible at Tiahuanaco but visible in the opposite hemisphere.
Scientists have also ascertained that the Tiahuanacans divided the circle mathematically into 264 degrees (rather than 360 as was initiated by the Babylonians); they determined the correct ratio of pi (22/7), and they could calculate squares (and hence, square roots).[x]
But despite the speechlessness that such irrefutable brainpower hidden away in the hills of the sun would cause, the innate yearning within human nature to solve the unsolvable inspires many to speculate:
Many theories for the skill of Tiwanaku’s architectural construction have been proposed. One is that they used a luk’a, which is a standard measurement of about sixty centimeters. Another argument is for the Pythagorean Ratio. This idea calls for right triangles at a ratio of five to four to three used in the gateways to measure all parts. Lastly Protzen and Nair [authors of “On Reconstructing Tiwanaku Architecture,” in The Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians]argue that Tiwanaku had a system set for individual elements dependent on context and composition. This is shown in the construction of similar gateways ranging from diminutive to monumental size, proving that scaling factors did not affect proportion. With each added element, the individual pieces were shifted to fit together.[xi]
Regardless of the methods used for building, there is absolutely no evidence that this culture had experimented up to the ingenuity we see today. It is as if they knew exactly how to execute their building aptitude by instinct from the very first attempt, instead of showing any evolutionary phases of skill.
Not surprisingly, their ability to survive and maintain food/plant resources—in an atmosphere and climate hostile to vegetation—had the world baffled. When their secret was finally discovered, it proved cleverer than what many farming communities could organize today. Canals were fixed into the soil at exactly the correct depth in grids around the plants; when the sun bore down on the canals, the water would heat to the point that after dark, the water would cool slowly overnight, dissipating heat in a steam or mist that wrapped the plants like a blanket, the surrounding air never dipping to below-freezing temperatures typical of this area. And as if this strategy in and of itself wasn’t sophisticated enough, this tactic doubled as an early irrigation system.
As a point of further intrigue, the site tells excellent stories and displays impressive religious implications within its artwork. The deity at the center and top of the Gate of the Sun has been identified by some historians and archaeologists as the god Viracocha, who created the “race of giants.”
The following is an excerpt from the Wikipedia page on the god Viracocha (note the similarities between the Viracocha myth and that of the story of Genesis):
According to a myth recorded by Juan de Betanzos, Viracocha rose from Lake Titicaca (or sometimes the cave of Paqariq Tampu) during the time of darkness to bring forth light. He made the sun, moon, and the stars. He made mankind by breathing into stones, but his first creation were brainless giants that displeased him. So he destroyed it with a flood and made a new, better one from smaller stones. Viracocha eventually disappeared across the Pacific Ocean (by walking on the water), and never returned. He wandered the earth disguised as a beggar, teaching his new creations the basics of civilization, as well as working numerous miracles. He wept when he saw the plight of the creatures he had created. It was thought that Viracocha would re-appear in times of trouble. Pedro Sarmiento de Gamboa noted that Viracocha was described as “a man of medium height, white and dressed in a white robe like an alb secured round the waist, and that he carried a staff and a book in his hands.”[xii]
A description/explanation of the illustration of the deity Viracocha provides insight on what may have been carved upon the Gate of the Sun:
Viracocha was one of the most important deities in the Inca pantheon and seen as the creator of all things, or the substance from which all things are created, and intimately associated with the sea. Viracocha [was said to have] created the universe, sun, moon, and stars, time (by commanding the sun to move over the sky) and civilization itself. Viracocha was worshipped as god of the sun and of storms. He was represented as wearing the sun for a crown, with thunderbolts in his hands, and tears descending from his eyes as rain.[xiii]
Perhaps one of the most debated locations on earth today is the Göbekli Tepe structures in Turkey, just north of the Syrian border. However, it should be noted that with as much discussion as this site inspires, it has so far provided much less plausible human-hands theories than even that of Baalbek, which we will mention in this chapter.
Göbekli Tepe is unique from other archaeological sites in that the oldest and deepest layer of the structure excavated dates to Pre-Pottery Neolithic A (or “PPNA”; 8000–7000 BC;[xiv] though radiocarbon dating suggests this first layer could be as old as 9600 BC), yet it is home to almost two hundred T-shaped pillars (according to geophysical surveys; they have not all been excavated as of this writing), standing at up to twenty feet (six meters) and weighing up to twenty tons (forty thousand pounds). (Note also that there is one stone in the nearby quarry weighing fifty tons.) Many of the pillars have ornate carvings on one side involving animals—both docile and predatory, insects, reptiles, birds, etc.—but not surprisingly in relation with Neolithic cave paintings and very few humanoid shapes. The largest pillars stand in the center of mysterious circles made up of smaller pillars and stones. The contrast of such magnificent stones being dated to within the PPNA era draws serious attention from archaeologists and historians because of the implications this combination has upon everything we know of early human civilization development, which is what links this site to its fame.
ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW VIDEO
Prior to modern farming settlements, which created the blank grounds we see today, this area would have been an ideal plant/animal source for the nomadic hunters/gatherers of the Pre-Pottery eras. Chief German archaeologist Klaus Schmidt, who has devoted well over ten years of his life to the mysteries of the Göbekli Tepe site, has been able to rule out that the summit, itself, was ever a permanent residence to any early inhabitants. That would suggest, to Schmidt, that this eleven-thousand-year-old location—said to predate Stonehenge by six thousand years—was a place of worship; the “first human-built holy place;”[xv] “humanity’s first ‘cathedral on a hill.’”[xvi]
Because only approximately 5 percent of the site is currently unearthed (about one acre), many secrets may yet remain beneath the soil. However, despite the minimal unveiling that has been accomplished as of this moment, there is good reason for such global attention toward this hill.
According to Smithsonian Magazine, “Scholars have long believed that only after people learned to farm and live in settled communities did they have the time, organization, and resources to construct temples and support complicated social structures.”[xvii] But with no evidence of settlement (“no cooking hearths, houses or trash pits, and none of the clay fertility figurines that litter nearby sites of about the same age”[xviii] among other items), the only human explanation for these monumental complexes would attribute the building, stacking, lifting, shaping, and conceptualization of these pillars to the travelers of that time. Because the site is dated to PPNA, we are left to believe the site was created by people without even the “time, organization, and resources” to construct a clay pot. Not to mention, as the constantly moving/relocating/survival lifestyle of these pre-sedentary-society nomads suggest, they would have had to accomplish this tasks overnight, so this theory isn’t even taken seriously by most archaeologists. “Schmidt says the monuments could not have been built by ragged bands of hunter-gatherers. To carve, erect and bury rings of seven-ton stone pillars would have required hundreds of workers, all needing to be fed and housed.”[xix]
Layer II, consisting of structures in, on, and around Layer III, is dated to the PPNB Age, and involves the installation of small windowless rooms and smaller T-shaped pillars. Layer I is the youngest of the layers, located at the topmost portion of the hill (ground level prior to excavation) and only offers loosened sediments from erosion gathered since the hill had been intentionally backfilled (ca. 8000 BCE, the Stone Age, as per carbon dating; reason for deliberate backfill unknown), as well as other small stone tools and limestone fragments from the refuse that was used to fill. National Geographic explains the layers in a way that is, perhaps, easier to understand: “Bewilderingly, the people at Göbekli Tepe got steadily worse at temple building. The earliest rings [Layer III] are the biggest and most sophisticated, technically and artistically. As time went by, the pillars [in Layer II] became smaller, simpler, and were mounted with less and less care. Finally the effort seems to have petered out altogether by 8200 BC [when the site was backfilled; Layer I]. Göbekli Tepe was all fall and no rise.”[xx]
One leading theory as to the purpose of Göbekli Tepe proposes that the pillars and circles were intended as a pilgrimage site, and to welcome the deceased as a final resting place. This is supported by the carvings, primarily predatory animals; some suggest that the early handiwork was made to drive away evil spirits from tampering with the bodies of lost loved ones. Because vultures appear often amongst the ancient artwork—as well as chipped, human bone fragments found in the area—this points to the possibility of early sky burials, in which the travelers would have left their loved ones’ remains behind at the pillars for the carrion birds to scatter. Butchered animal bones were also discovered, despite the lack of housing edifices or cooking constructs, which suggest that the congregants would share a brief meal (prepared elsewhere or aboveground outside of the circles) before their departure from the hill. That seems like a logical “why” for the equation, but what remains unanswered is “how.” Even if religion or burial was the original intent of the site, how would these pillars have been erected by people who lacked the resources, housing, time, and intelligence to do so?
There is a whisper among several involved in the debate that this may have been one of the world’s first farming initiatives, originating from desperation, as opposed to ingenuity and planning. If this were true, the story, as hypothesized by archaeologists, would unfold like this: Neolithic hunters/gatherers set out to create a holy place. They found a quarry, and began digging up multi-ton megaliths with flint flakes (sharp-edged, palm-sized, flaky stones used by early settlers for varying uses, often appearing similar to obsidian arrowheads or the like, except much lighter in color). Quickly, their resources ran out as they realized that their building site would take much longer than planned, so they began to gather the wheat from the surrounding fields to survive, which slowly became the first domesticated wheat farm. As they continued to dig up the stones and build their holy site, they learned simultaneously about planting and harvesting, the knowledge they gained based more on lucky happenstance and the sheer will to survive than by planning. They continued to apply their intelligence toward the goal of remaining in one place, their dedication to the holy site forcing them into a new way of life, and the hunters/gatherers eventually became the earliest farmers/settlers.[xxi]
Another more believable version of this story was conceived by Schmidt:
Such scholars suggest that the Neolithic revolution, i.e., the beginnings of grain cultivation, took place here. Schmidt believed, as others do, that mobile groups in the area were compelled to cooperate with each other to protect early concentrations of wild cereals from wild animals (herds of gazelles and wild donkeys). Wild cereals may have been used for sustenance more intensively than before and were perhaps deliberately cultivated. This would have led to early social organization of various groups in the area of Göbekli Tepe. Thus, according to Schmidt, the Neolithic did not begin on a small scale in the form of individual instances of garden cultivation, but developed rapidly in the form of “a large-scale social organization.”[xxii]
We know that human domestication had to have happened at some point in history, so why not there and then? Again, the theory could make sense, and has even been supported by recent DNA analysis linking the modern domestic wheat strands with the wild wheat strands of Mount Karaca Dağ, only twenty miles from Göbekli Tepe, evidence that modern wheat likely could have originated from wheat domestication experiments just like the one in Schmidt’s theory.[xxiii] Yet, the farther we get into this story, again, the more questions surface. How could there have been an early farming initiative without a nearby settlement (the nearby towns were not built until centuries later)? These ten- to fifty-ton stones are estimated to have required five hundred men to pull them from the quarry a quarter mile to the pillars and circles. As Archaeology Magazine puts it, “How did Stone Age people achieve the level of organization necessary to do this?” The article goes on to say that some archaeologists speculate that “an elite class of religious leaders supervised the work and later controlled the rituals that took place at the site.”[xxiv] Were these the reptilians of Genesis 6, the Watchers who descended as “flying geniuses”? I ask this because the so called Pre-Pottery Neolithic types that would have existed in Göbekli Tepe were within migrating distance from the ancient town of Jericho, and at approximately the same time the massive building project was underway in Turkey (Göbekli Tepe is an archaeological site in the Southeastern Anatolia Region of Turkey), the Pre-Pottery Neolithic A culture at the famous biblical site of Jericho started something in haste that could be telling. The hunter-gatherers there who had been living in the mud huts and tents and following the seasons wherever it led them, suddenly stopped migrating and started a massive building project of their own—and it was purely defensive. Very quickly a people who up until then would have simply run away from any superior army abruptly reacted as if they perceived something they could not outrun, a need to surround their settlement with a massive wall that was ten feet thick and nearly a half mile long around the inner city. As part of the wall, they also erected a gigantic stone lookout tower thirty-three feet in diameter and about that high. The wall was surrounded by a moat of sorts, cut out from solid bedrock and filled with mud. It was approximately nine feet deep and twenty-seven feet wide, with another wall outside that perimeter. The purpose of the moat was to restrict an enemy’s ability to get to the wall with scaling gear (or, more likely, to stop something that could jump over the wall, asin giants). Of course, I am theorizing here, but clearly something suddenly was confronting the inhabitants of what would become the city of Jericho, and this at the same time the apocryphal Book of Enoch records serpentine Watchers—the immortals we are studying—who descended in the days of Jared and created mutant life forms called Nephilim.
Yet while these mysterious portal-traversing entities were coming under the judgment of God throughout the Middle East, at Göbekli Tepe, the people rushed to bury the construction site under tons and tons of earth-fill for reasons that remain unclear. Was it so this site could be uncovered after the Flood (which had been prophesied and then the world was aware)? Or is there something in Turkey yet to be discovered that might explain why it was—like the Anasazi dwellings in the United States would later be—abruptly abandoned? Something that might even be used by those giants who are prophesied to return, or some part of great deception in the end times? Even more so perhaps than Baalbek (summary follows), Göbekli Tepe remains a mystery. We can’t say for sure who, how, or for what purpose it was built; nor can we even begin to guess why it was ever ordered to be backfilled, or why each generation of builders became less proficient and impressive than the previous, instead of the other way around, which is what natural evolutionary intelligence would suggest. One thing we know for sure: If Göbekli Tepe was the result of human hands, then, at the very least, it erases everything we thought we knew about early human development, agricultural efficiency of nomadic persons, and settlement domestication.
UP NEXT: The Mystery Of Baalbek
[i] “The Ancient Astronaut Theory,” http://imaginealiens.weebly.com/gate-of-the-gods.html (last accessed February 5, 2015).
[ii]John Black, “Lake Titicaca—Gate of the Gods,” Ancient Origins, January 28, 2013, http://www.ancient-origins.net/ancient-places-americas/lake-titicaca-gate-gods-003 (last accessed February 5, 2015).
[iii] New documentary release announcement, “The Mysterious Stone Monuments of Markawasi, Peru,” as seen on “The Documentary Channel,” BBC Video, http://www.bcvideo.com/markawasi.html (last accessed February 5, 2015).
[iv]“10 Ancient Settlements that Were Abandoned for Mysterious Reasons,” Urban Ghosts Media, September 29, 2014, http://www.urbanghostsmedia.com/2014/09/10-ancient-settlements-abandoned-mysterious-reasons/4/. (last accessed February 5, 2015).
[vi]Referenced as “14,000 years old” as well as “14000 BP” regularly. As examples: Dan Eden, “The Amazing Engineering Designs of Tiahuanaco: Gateway to the Gods,” ViewZone, http://www.viewzone.com/tiax.html (last accessed February 5, 2015). (See the breakdown of the site-dating and its controversy under the heading “How old is this site?”; Rebecca Stone-Miller, Art of the Andes: From Chavin to Inca (Thames & Hudson, New York: 1996); Brian M. Fagan, The Seventy Great Mysteries of the Ancient World: Unlocking the Secrets of Past Civilizations (Thames & Hudson, New York: 2001).
[ix]Ibid., under the heading “How old is this site?”
[xii] “Viracocha,” Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia, under the heading “Cosmogony according to Spanish accounts,” last modified January 8, 2015, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viracocha (last accessed February 5, 2015).
[xiv] For more information on these historic periods, see: “Pre-Pottery Neolithic A,” Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia, last modified November 26, 2014, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pre-Pottery_Neolithic_A (last accessed February 4, 2015).
[xv] Andrew Curry, “Göbekli Tepe: The World’s First Temple?: Predating Stonehenge by 6,000 Years, Turkey’s Stunning Göbekli Tepe Upends the Conventional View of the Rise of Civilization,” Smithsonian.com, November 2008, http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/gobekli-tepe-the-worlds-first-temple-83613665/?no-ist (last accessed February 3, 2015).
[xvii]Ibid., emphasis added.
[xix]Ibid., emphasis added.
[xx]Charles C. Mann, “The Birth of Religion,” National Geographic Magazine, June 11, 2011, http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/print/2011/06/gobekli-tepe/mann-text (last accessed February 4, 2015).
[xxi] This theory appears in many places throughout research. For further reading, consider: “Which Came First, Monumental Building Projects Or Farming?” Archaeo News, December 18, 2008, last accessed February 4, 2015, http://www.stonepages.com/news/archives/003061.html.
[xxii]“Göbekli Tepe,” Wikipedia, under the heading “Interpretation,” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G%C3%B6bekli_Tepe#cite_ref-23. Original text German, as cited from: Klaus-Dieter Linsmeier, Eine Revolution imgroßenStil, “Interview mit Klaus Schmidt,” AbenteuerArchäologie. Kulturen, Menschen, Monumente (Spektrum der Wissenschaft, Heidelberg 2006) 2.
[xxiii]Manfred Heun et al., “Site of Einkorn Wheat Domestication Identified by DNA Fingerprinting,” Science Magazine, vol. 278, November 1997, 1312–1314; viewable here: http://www.ndsu.edu/pubweb/~mcclean/plsc731/homework/papers/huen%20et%20al%20-%20site%20of%20einkorn%20wheat%20domestication%20identified%20by%20DNA%20fingerprinting.pdf.
[xxiv] Sandra Scham, “The World’s First Temple,” Archaeology Magazine, vol. 61, November/December 2008; viewable here: http://archive.archaeology.org/0811/abstracts/turkey.html.