Perhaps one of the most debated locations on earth today is the Gobekli Tepe structures in Turkey, just north of the Syrian border (and why we are providing the exclusive DVD “What Lies Beneath: The Lost Secrets of the Watchers Below Gobekli Tepe” by on-location archaeologist Dr. Aaron Judkins that reveals Gobekli Tepe’s “historical use as a place of Watchers worship, the evidence of a cult that venerated human skulls-and-reptilian creators, and the links between the god of Göbekli Tepe and the Bible” free with the new book Before Gensis). However, it should be noted that with as much discussion as this site inspires, it has so far provided few plausible human-hands theories.
Gobekli Tepe is unique from other archeological sites in that the oldest and deepest layer of the structure excavated dates to Pre-Pottery Neolithic (or “PPN”; 10000–6500 BC; though radiocarbon dating suggests this first layer could be as old as 9600 BC). Though the math on this is simple, it’s so unbelievable that it begs to be clarified in even more straightforward terms: Gobekli Tepe was inhabited by its first builders more than eleven thousand years ago. Yet it is home to almost two hundred T-shaped pillars (according to geophysical surveys; not all of them have been excavated as of this writing), standing up to twenty feet (six meters) high and weighing up to twenty tons (forty thousand pounds). Most of these are between seven and ten tons. Note also that one stone in the nearby quarry weighs an estimated fifty tons, posed as if it was the next stone to be erected as a pillar when the construction suddenly stopped.
These are the oldest known megaliths in the world. Only this far into our discussion of this location, we’re already scratching our heads as to how humans of this time—who hadn’t yet perfected the process of crafting pottery over or within high-temperature heat sources (thus the “pre-pottery” designation of the Neolithic Age label)—could have quarried, lifted, transported, and erected towers this heavy, standing this high, and involving this level of artistry.
Many of the pillars feature ornate carvings involving animals—both docile and predatory, reptiles, birds, etc.—but not surprisingly in relation with Neolithic cave paintings and very few humanoid shapes. Interestingly, but I suppose not surprisingly, archeologists report in “The Snakes of Gobekli Tepe: An Ethological Consideration”: “The animal most frequently depicted is the snake, most likely the Macrovipera lebetina [the venomous, “blunt-nosed” viper],” which some archeologists consider to be “evidence for a [biblical] theology that featured supernatural watchers,”[i] a term for the fallen angels of Luciferian origin. Many areas of the ruins also connect serpentine iconography to the male reproductive organ, which is telling. If the Watchers, as these fallen angels are known in Enochian literature, were in fact serpentine in their appearance—and if they did actually crossbreed with human females, as both Genesis 6:4 and the Book of Enoch describe (which we will address later)—it may account for why the world of archeology now identifies within the edifices of Gobekli Tepe “groups of male snakes…pursuing a female with the intention of mating.”[ii] Either way, “the snakes do in some sense represent something sexual (and perhaps the [male reproductive organ], metaphorically).”[iii]
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 PPN era draws serious attention from archeologists 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. Though these professionals would absolutely avoid using the term OOPArt in association with any artifact of Gobekli Tepe, for reasons stated earlier, nearly everything in the Gobekli Tepe site is strange, “out of place,” and most certainly outside the correct epoch of humanity’s level of advancement.
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 archeologist Klaus Schmidt, the original excavator of Gobekli Tepe who devoted twenty years of his life to its mysteries between 1994 and his death in 2014, was able to rule out that the summit, itself, was ever a permanent residence to any early inhabitants. That would suggest, to Schmidt, that this location—said to predate Stonehenge by more than six thousand years—was a place of worship; the “first human-built holy place”;[iv] “humanity’s first ‘cathedral on a hill.’”[v]
Seriously, what’s the deal with these sites and sacred god snakes?
One leading theory as to the purpose of Gobekli 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 of predatory animals; some suggest these were made to drive away evil spirits from tampering with the bodies of lost loved ones. Because vultures—as well as chipped human bone fragments found in the area—appear often amongst the ancient artwork. This points to the possibility of early sky burials in which 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 houses or cooking constructs, which suggests that the congregants would share a brief meal (prepared elsewhere or aboveground outside the circles) before their departure from the hill and the trek back home. That seems like a logical answer to “why,” but what remains unanswered is “how,” when these people lacked the resources, housing, time, and intelligence to do so.
Because only approximately 5 percent of the site (about one acre) is currently unearthed, many secrets may yet remain beneath the soil. (The focus for archeologists shifted in 2018 when Gobekli Tepe was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. That same year, Schmidt’s widow observed what she felt was harsh treatment of the area. Since then, uncovering mysteries through further digging has taken a back seat to maintaining careful preservation of what has already been unearthed, so we have little reason to believe new layers of Gobekli Tepe will be excavated in the very near future.) However, despite the minimal unveiling that has been accomplished as of this moment, there is good reason for such global attention being paid to 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.”[vi] 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,”[vii] among other items), the only human explanation for these monumental complexes would attribute the building, stacking, lifting, shaping, and conceptualization of these pillars to travelers of that time. Because the site is dated to PPN, we are left to believe it was established 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 suggests, they would have had to accomplish this task overnight, so this theory isn’t even taken seriously by most archeologists. Schmidt, no doubt sharing the opinion of his peers, recognized the absurdity of this theory, saying these monuments absolutely were not put together by “ragged bands of hunter-gatherers.” He notes that crafting, assembling, and setting up stone pillars weighing an average of seven tons (though some are heavier) would have involved “hundreds of workers, all needing to be fed and housed.”[viii]
As one example: Pillar 27 from Enclosure C, Layer III (the oldest and deepest of the three layers) features a predatory animal elaborately carved in the likeness of a short-mouthed crocodile or large-breed feline with teeth bared and tail swerving at an extreme angle. Of all the pillars in Gobekli Tepe, this pillar has drawn the most attention, since it is carved “in the round” (meaning it’s rendered in three dimensions and is viewable in “pop-up” form from any direction). It’s hard to imagine the sort of artistic training it would take to achieve this high level of skill in carving; that these hunter-gatherers would be able to undergo that training would be shocking considering that we can assume they were simultaneously trying to survive—and apparently without food or housing. Even today, if an artist had a lifetime of experience, making him the fastest in the business, as well as access to the most impressive catalog of sculpting tools and high-tech machinery, creating something similar to the carving of the predator on Pillar 27 could easily take months or years if the craftsman were also required to feed himself on the harvest of his own land and, as we’ve shown, there was no land to live off of anywhere near the site.
Could it be that these ancients, too, were visited by the strange, white, long-bearded god-man, Viracocha or Quetzalcoatl, also known as the Feathered Serpent, who apparently had the capability of wandering anywhere on Earth in places possibly dating to a “void” era to teach early nomadic wanderers the tricks behind advanced civilization? Was the god of the Gobekli-Tepe builders also the god of snakes? Or was he, himself, a snake entity of some form? And did he, too, like the “watchers” of Enoch, instill within these pre-pottery-era nomads an understanding of some sketchy interbreeding between snake heroes and human women? The ruins appear to suggest as much…
Layer II, consisting of structures in, on, and around Layer III, is dated to the latter half of the PPN 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 BC, the Stone Age, as per carbon dating; reason for the deliberate backfill is unknown), as well as other small stone tools and limestone fragments from the refuse that was used as the filler. An article in National Geographic explains the layers in a way that is, perhaps, easier to understand, though it simultaneously presents more questions than answers: “Bewilderingly, the people at Gobekli Tepe got steadily worse at temple building. The earliest [and deepest] rings [of Layer III] are the biggest and most sophisticated, technically and artistically.”[ix] This article goes on to say that, as time passed, pillars in Layer II were “smaller, simpler,” and erected with “less care,” until the whole community effort “petered out altogether” when the site was backfilled. The conclusion made by the National Geographic piece is that the community of Gobekli Tepe—whoever they were; early humans, pre-Adamites, who knows—was “all fall and no rise.”[x]
Wait…what? They got worse instead of better at building over time? How? That defies logic. Why wouldn’t the future generations of this people group be able to replicate their forefathers’ knowledge and develop the intelligence it takes to make even more advanced pillars in the later layers of the site?
Trust me, I would love to have the answer, but no one does. I theorize that whatever person, “god,” or traveling being who taught the earliest builders had left them to their own devices at some early point. Their descendants could never quite recapture the technology of their ancestors. But an even more important question is this: How were multiple generations of society able to survive in this place long enough to carve anything in stone—no matter how meticulously—if they didn’t have a settlement nearby to keep them alive and healthy? Keep trekking with me a bit and you’ll see this question come back again and again. It’s as if most historians and other experts acknowledge everything up to that question with various workable theories, then the debate drops off.
A whisper among some involved in the debate suggests 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 archeologists, 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 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 their building undertaking would take much longer than planned, so they began to gather wheat from surrounding fields to survive. The result was eventually the first domesticated wheat farm. As they continued to dig up stones and build their holy site, they learned about planting and harvesting; the knowledge they gained was based more on happenstance and the sheer will to survive than by planning. They continued to apply their intelligence to achieving the goal of remaining in one place, their dedication to the holy site forcing them into a new way of life, so the hunters/gatherers eventually became the earliest farmers/settlers.[xi]
Another version of this postulation was conceived by Schmidt, as noted in an interview between him and German physicist and Doctor of Human Sciences Klaus-Dieter Linsmeier:
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 Gobekli 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.”[xii]
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 Dag, only twenty miles from Gobekli Tepe, which is evidence that today’s wheat likely could have originated from wheat domestication experiments just like the one in Schmidt’s theory.[xiii] 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 neighboring towns weren’t 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. Even Archaeology Magazine acknowledges this as a well-known puzzle: “How did Stone Age people achieve the level of organization necessary to do this?… [Some archeologists speculate] an elite class of religious leaders supervised the work and later controlled the rituals that took place at the site.”[xiv]
An elite class of supervisory religious leaders…hmm. Now, that is interesting. Who were these religious leaders, what religion did they observe, and were they human?
Were they some form of snake?
Possible Link to Activities of Ancient Jericho?
Some folks have taken all of this Gobekli Tepe information into account from a biblical perspective and see a connection to the giants of Genesis 6:4. That opens up a whole new world of possibilities if it can be counted as true, especially in light of the fact that these so called Pre-Pottery Neolithic hunter-gatherers were within migrating distance from the ancient town of Jericho, and at approximately the same time this massive building project was underway. (The fall of Jericho in the book of Joshua occurred just when the Bible says: within a few years of 1400 BC, approximately 6,600 years after Jericho had been erected by the former ancients; see this endnote for a quick breakdown of the debate.[xv])
The culture at the famous biblical site of Jericho dated to 8000 BC started something in haste that could be telling. The hunter-gatherers there who had been living in mud huts and tents and following the seasons wherever they led, suddenly stopped migrating and started a massive building project of their own—and it was purely defensive. Very quickly, a people who until then would have simply run away from any superior army abruptly reacted as if they perceived something they could not outrun. If we piece together what the books don’t directly state, we see their 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, which was 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, some say, to stop something such as giants from jumping over the wall). Of course, I’m theorizing, but clearly something was suddenly confronting the inhabitants of what would become the city of Jericho. The apocryphal Book of Enoch records serpentine immortals—fallen angels; Watchers—who descended in the later days of Jared and created mutant life forms called Nephilim. (We will discuss Nephilim a little later.) Because these entities were offspring of fallen angels whose wickedness led to the Flood of Noah’s day, which Young Earthers and Ussher date to after Adam’s birth in 4004 BC, could there have been a pre-Adamic precursor species of mutations alive as far back as 8000 BC, when Jericho was first built? Were there some “void”-era beings whose warped DNA matched (or resembled) those of the later Nephilim?
We don’t know. What we do know is this: While Jericho ancients were erecting the wall that would crumble thousands of years later in Joshua’s day, over at Gobekli Tepe, the people rushed to bury the archaic construction site of their ancestors under tons and tons of earth-fill for reasons that remain unclear. Was it so this site could be uncovered in the future, just after the Flood, as many Bible scholars believe? Or is there something in Turkey yet to be discovered that might explain why it was abruptly abandoned: something that might even be used by the enemy for some part of the great deception of the end times?
Even more so perhaps than Baalbek, Gobekli Tepe remains a mystery. We can’t say for sure who, how, or for what purpose it was built; nor can we know for sure why it was ever ordered to be backfilled (unless someone wanted their religion to survive a great destructive event on Earth and resurface later on), 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. But, if Gobekli 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.
Oh yeah, one more thing: It also bungles up the proposed historical timeline of human evolution for both Young Earthers and scientists alike, making a few less-trod paths of Old Earth thought regarding the “void” era more plausible. Then such OOPArts as the pillars of Gobekli Tepe—though experts may squirm at that inference—make “crazy” ideas like mine and Tom Horn’s (theories that would “start a war” amidst theologians and Bible scholars as several of our companions have warned) look a little less crazy.
UP NEXT: Karahan Tepe to Reset the Game?
[i] Henley, Tracy B., and Lani P. Lyman-Henley, “The Snakes of Gobekli Tepe: An Ethological Consideration,” December 2019, Research Gate, last accessed May 5, 2023, https://www.researchgate.net/publication/337914981_The_Snakes_of_Gobekli_Tepe_An_Ethological_Consideration; emphasis added.
[iv] Curry, Andrew “Gobekli Tepe: The World’s First Temple?: Predating Stonehenge by 6,000 Years, Turkey’s Stunning Gobekli Tepe Upends the Conventional View of the Rise of Civilization,” November 2008, Smithsonian, last accessed March 27, 2023, http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/gobekli-tepe-the-worlds-first-temple-83613665/?no-ist.
[vi]Ibid., emphasis added.
[viii]Ibid., emphasis added.
[ix] Mann, Charles C., “The Birth of Religion,” June 11, 2011, National Geographic Magazine, last accessed March 27, 2023, https://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/article/gobeki-tepe; emphasis added.
[xi] This theory appears in many places throughout research. For further reading, consider: “Which Came First, Monumental Building Projects Or Farming?” December 18, 2008, Archaeo News, last accessed March 27, 2023, http://www.stonepages.com/news/archives/003061.html.
[xii] 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. This English translation was, at the time of our initial research on this site in Unearthing the Lost World of the Cloudeaters, available directly from: “Gobekli Tepe,” Wikipedia, under the heading “Interpretation,” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G%C3%B6bekli_Tepe#cite_ref-23.
[xiii] Heun, Manfred, et al., “Site of Einkorn Wheat Domestication Identified by DNA Fingerprinting,” Science Magazine: Volume 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.
[xiv] Scham, Sandra, “The World’s First Temple,” Archaeology Magazine: Volume 61, November/December 2008, last accessed March 27, 2023, http://archive.archaeology.org/0811/abstracts/turkey.html.
[xv] For those readers who may have heard the rumor that the Jericho wall was already fallen by the time of Israelite’s famous war (when the walls tumbled down in the days of Joshua 2–6): Be aware that the dating of that catastrophic event was carried out in the 1950s and many glaring errors can be seen in the methods they applied in those days. This is a classic case of an “argument from silence,” where a certain kind of ancient pottery—Cypriot bichrome ware—was not found at the site. The archeologist of the day, Kathleen Kenyon, then determined that the lack of this pottery argued for an earlier destruction, somewhere in the ballpark of a century and a half prior to the story of Joshua (1550 BC). However, archeological dating should always mirror what was found, not what was missing, and even then, the pottery Kenyon was looking for was found on the east side of the structure by British archeologist John Garstang back in the 1930s, where Kenyon failed to look twenty years later. In the 1930s, the significance of the Cypriot pottery was not yet established, so there is much reason to believe that Kenyon was unaware of this earlier find. Likewise, copies of Cypriot pottery was all over the place in ancient Jericho, showing that the original occupants had at least already been exposed to that style and design by that date. With this in mind—alongside the well-known fact that radiocarbon dating can be off with a margin of a hundred years anyway—the biblical timeline stands as the true date for the fall of the Jericho wall circa 1400 BC, as Garstang first attested.