“…No view epitomizes Stonehenge more than the sight of the Sun’s rays shining through the still-standing megaliths of the Sarcen Circle at sunrise on summer’s longest day, when the Sun in its northern migration seems to hesitate, stop, and begin to return. As fate would have it, only four of those stone pillars remain upright and connected at the top of the curving lintels, forming three elongated windows through which we, as though we were Stonehenge’s long-gone giant builders, can also view – and determine – the beginning of a new annual cycle.
“…And as fate would have it, somewhere on the other side of the world, another set of three windows in a massive structure of cyclopean stones – built, local lore relates, by giants – also offers a breathtaking view of the Sun appearing through white and misty clouds and direct its rays in precise alignment. That other place of the Three Windows, where the Sun also rises on a crucial calendrical day, is in South America, in Peru.
“…Is the similarity just a visual fluke, a mere coincidence? We think not.
“…Nowadays the place is called Machu-Picchu, so named after the sharp peak that rises ten thousand feet at a bend of the Urubamba River on which the ancient city is situated.
“…It is now known that it was built long before the Incas, and that it’s olden name was Tampu-Tocco, “Haven of the Three Windows.” The place, and its unique windows, are featured in local lore regarding the origins of the Andean civilization when the gods, led by the great creator Viracocha, placed the four Ayar brothers and their four sister-wives in Tampu-Tocco. Three brothers emerged through the three windows to settle and civilize the Andean lands; one of them founded the Ancient Empire that preceded that of the Incas by thousands of years.
The reader may find more on the construction of the Inca ruins in BOOK 4: The Lost Realms.
The Temple of the Three Windows
“…The Temple of the Three Windows as Bingham named, has only three walls: the one with the windows facing in an easterly direction, and two sidewalls as protecting wings. The western side is completely open, providing room for a stone pillar, about seven feet high; supported by two horizontally placed, carefully shaped stones, one on each side, the pillar precisely faces the central window… and we believe that the pillar here served the same purpose as the Heel Stone (at first) at Stonehenge or the Altar Stone (later on here), i.e, as the Seventh Pillar of Gudea to provide the line of sight. Ingeniously, the availability of three windows made possible three lines of sight – to sunrise on midsummer day, equinox day, and midwinter day.
“…Its other principal structure, also three-sided has its longest wall on the Plaza’s (Sacred Plaza) northern end and is without a wall on its southern face… The central north wall has been so constructed as to create seven false windows – trapezoidal cutouts that imitate the three windows but do not in fact cut through the stone wall. A massive rectangular stone monolith, measuring fourteen by five by three feet, lies on the structure’s floor below these false windows.
“…The suggestion that the structure could have been related to festival days i.e. to the calendar – is intriguing. The false seven windows have six markedly protruding stone pegs above them, so that some kind of counting involving seven and six – as at the Girsu in Lagash – cannot be ruled out…
“…A smaller enclosure… was built as an adjunct to the Principal Temple… It can best be described as a roofless room with a stone bench; Bingham assumed that it was the priest’s abode, but there is nothing there to indicate its purpose.
“…Right behind this enclosure there begins a stairway… it winds its way upward, leading from the Sacred Plaza up a hill which overlooks the whole city. The top of the hill was flattened to enable the construction of an enclosure. There, in the center, where the hill was flattened to form a platform an outcropping of the native stone was left sticking out, then shaped and carved magnificently to create a polygonal base from which a short stone column projects upward. That the stone-on-a-base served astronomical-calendrical purposes is evident from its name: Inti-huatana, which in the local tongue meant “That which binds the Sun.” As the Incas and their descendants explained, it was a stone instrument for observing and determining the solstices, to make sure that the Sun be bound and not keep moving away for good without being pulled back to return.
Intihuatana Stone, Machu Picchu, Peru.
Intihuatana Temple, Machu Picchu, Peru.
“…Nearly a quarter of a century passed between the discovery of Machu Picchu and the first serious study of its astronomical connotations. It was only in the 1930s that Rolf Muller, a professor of astronomy at the University of Potsdam in Germany, began a series of investigations at several important sites in Peru and Bolivia…
“…Muller concluded (Die Intiwatana (Sonnenwarten) im Alten Peru and other writings) that the short pillar atop the base, and the base itself, were cut and shape to enable precise astronomical observations at this particular geographical location and elevation. The pillar served as gnomon and the base as recorder of the shadow. However, the base itself was so shaped and oriented that observations along its grooves could pinpoint sunrise or sunset on crucial days. Muller concluded that those preintended days were sunset, on the day of the winter solstice (June 21 on the southern hemisphere) and sunrise on the day of summer solstice (there, December 23). He furthermore determined that the angles of the rectangular base were such that if one were to observe the horizon along the diagonal sightline connecting protrusions (3 and 1, diagram on book) one would have observed sunset precisely on the equinox days at the time the Intihuatana was carved.
“…That, he concluded based on the Earth’s greater tilt at the time, was just over four thousand years ago – sometime between 2100 B.C. and 2300 B.C. This makes the Intihuatana at Machu Picchu contemporaneous with, if not somewhat older than, the Eninnu at Lagash and Stonehenge II. More remarkable perhaps is the rectangular layout for the astronomical function of the Intihuatana’s base, for it imitates the exceptional rectangular layout of the Four Station Stones of Stonehenge I (though, apparently, without its lunar purposes).
“…The legend of the Ayar brothers relates that the three brothers from whom the Andean kingdom stemmed… got rid of the fourth brother by imprisoning him in a cave inside a great rock, where he was turned into a stone. Such a cave inside a cleft rock, with a white vertical stem or short pillar inside, indeed exists at Machu Picchu. Above it one of the most remarkable structures in the whole of South America still stands… an enclosure which on two sides for perfect walls at a right angle to each other, and on the other two sides curves to form a perfect semicircle. It is know as the Torreon (the Tower).
The Torreon (the Tower), Machu Picchu.
The enclosure, which is reached by seven stone steps, encompasses, as at the Intihuatana, the protruding peak of the great rock on which it was constructed. As with the Intihuatana, the outcropping here was also carved and given a purposeful shape; except that here no stem was made to act as a gnomon. Instead, the astronomical sightlines that run along grooves and polygonal surfaces of the “sacred rock” lead to two windows in the semicircular wall. Muller, and other astronomers after him… concluded that the sightlines were oriented to sunrises on the days of the winter and summer solstices – more than four thousand years ago. But there is another window:
“…where the semicircle ended and the straight wall began, had a third window – if one can so call the aperture. It is larger than the other two, its sill is not straight, but is shaped as an inverted stairway, and its top is formed not by a straight lintel stone but by a wedgelike slit, like an inverted V.
“…In addition to the three apertures, there were nine false trapezoidal windows in the straight parts of the enclosing walls. Spaced between these false windows there protrude from the walls stone pegs… The longer wall which has seven false windows, has six such pegs – duplicating the arrangement in the longer wall of the Principal Temple.
“…The number of the windows – actual plus false – twelve, undoubtedly denotes calendrical functions, such as the count of twelve months in a year. The number of false windows (seven) and pegs (six) in the longer wall, as in that of the Principal Temple, may indicate a need to engage in intercalation – a periodic adjustment of the lunar cycle to the solar cycle by adding a thirteenth month every-few years. Combining with the alignments and apertures for observing and determining the solstices and the equinoxes, the false windows with their pegs lead to the conclusion that at Machu Picchu someone had created a complex solar-lunar stone computer to serve as a calendar.
“…The Torreon, contemporaneous with the Eninnu and with Stonehenge II… presents the extremely rare circular shape of a stone structure – extremely rare, that is, in South America, but with an obvious kingship to the stone circles of Lagash and Stonehenge.
“…The Inca Empire was not the first kingdom with a capital at Cuzco in Peru. Researchers now know that the legendary Incas, whom the Spaniards encountered and subjugated, came to power in Cuzco only in A.D. 1021. Long before them one of the Ayar brothers, Manco Capac, founded the city when a golden rod given him by the god Viracocha sunk into the ground to indicate the right location. It happened, by the calculations of Montesinos, circa 2400 B.C. – almost 3,500 before the Incas.
“…When the Spanish conquerors arrived in Cuzco, the Inca capital, in 1533, they were astounded to discover a metropolis with some 100,000 dwelling houses, surrounding a royal-religious center of magnificent palaces…
The Spaniards were amazed at the amount of gold in the empire’s holiest temple… Cori-cancha, meaning Golden Enclosure…
“…Chroniclers who had seen the Coricancha before it was vandalized, demolished by the Catholic priests, and built over into a church, reported that the enclosed compound included a main temple, dedicated to the god Viracocha; and shrines or chapels for the worship of the Moon, Venus, a mysterious star called Coyllor, the Rainbow, and the god of Thunder and Lightning. The Spaniards nevertheless called the temple Temple of the Sun, believing that the Sun was the supreme deity worshiped by the Incas.
Coricancha, Cuzco; with the addition built on the Inca structure by the Catholic Priests.
“…It is assumed that the idea came to the Spaniards from the fact that in the Holy of Holies of the Coricancha – a semicircular chamber – there hung on the wall above the great altar an “image of the Sun.” It was a great golden disk which the Spaniards assumed to represent the Sun. In reality, it had served in earlier times to reflect a beam of light as the Sun’s rays penetrated the dark chamber once a year – at the moment of sunrise on the day of the winter solstice.
“…Significantly, the arrangement was akin to that in the Great Temple of Amon in Karnak, in Egypt. Significantly the Holy of Holies was in the extremely rare form of a semicircle, as the Torreon in the Machu Picchu… And, not surprisingly, careful studies and measurements by Muller showed that the orientation designed to permit the beam of sunlight to travel through the corridor and bounce off the “image of the Sun” was conceived when the Earth’s obliquity was 24º, which chronologically means, he wrote, more than four thousand years earlier. This matches the timetable related by Montesinos, according to which the ancient Empire began circa 2500 – 2400 B.C. and the assertion that the temple in Cuzco was built soon thereafter.
“…A megalithic Age with its colossal structures had obviously preceded the Ancient Empire… The prize for that should undoubtedly go to the ruins at Sacsahuaman, the promontory that overlooks Cuzco…
“…As with the other megaliths at Machu Picchu, the ones at Sacsahuaman too were brought from a great distance, were given their smooth and beveled faces and polygonal shapes, and remain holding fast together without mortar.
“…By whom, when, and why were these structures above ground, and the tunnels, channels, conduits, bored holes, and other odd shapes carved into the living rocks, made and fashioned? Local lore attributed them to “the giants.” The Spaniards, as the chronicler Garcilaso de la Vega wrote, believed that they were “erected not by men but by demons.” Squier wrote that the zigzagging walls represented without doubt the grandest specimens of the style called Cyclopean extant in America, but offered no explanation or theory.
“…Recent excavations have uncovered… one of the most unusual structural shapes in South America: a perfect circle.
“…This, however, was not the only circular structure on the promontory. Assuming that the three tiers of colossal walls were ramparts of a fortress, the Spaniards took it for granted that structural remains in the highest and narrowest part of the promontory, behind and above the walls, belonged to an Inca fortification… Archaeologists discovered that the area behind and above the three walls was honeycombed with subterranean tunnels and chambers. More important they uncovered there the foundations of a series of connected square and rectangular buildings; in their midst there were the remains of a perfectly circular structure. The natives refer to the structure as the Mayocmarca “The Circular Building”; the archaeologists call it the Torreon – The Tower – the same descriptive name given to the semicircular structure at Machu Picchu, and assumed that it was a defensive tower, part of the Sacsahuaman “fortress.”
Ramparts of Sacsahuaman.
Ramparts of Sacsahuaman.
Ramparts of Sacsahuaman.
Arial view of Sacsahuaman. The zigzagging walls and the circular structure can be well appreciated.
“…Archaeoastronomers, however, see in the structure clear evidence of an astronomical function. R.T. Zuidema (Inca Observations of the Solar and Lunar Passages, and other studies) noted that the alignment of the straight walls adjoining the circular structure was such that the north and south points of zenith and nadir could have been determined there. The walls that form the square enclosure within which the circular structure was emplaced are indeed aligned with the cardinal points; but they form only a frame for the circular structure, which consisted of three concentric walls connected by spokes of masonry that divide the outer two circular walls into sections. One such opening – an aperture if the higher courses forming the tower followed the ground plan – does point due south and thus could have served to determine sunset on nadir day. But the four other openings are clearly oriented to the northeast, southeast, southwest, and northwest – the unmistakable points of sunset and sunrise on the winter and summer solstice days (in the southern hemisphere).
“…If these are, as it appears, the remains of a full-fledged astronomical observatory, it was in all probability the earliest round observatory in South America, perhaps in all the Americas.
“…The alignment of this round observatory to the solstices puts it in the same category as the one at Stonehenge and orientationally as that of Egyptian temples. The evidence suggests, however, that after the Megalithic Age and in the era of the Ancient Empire began under the aegis of Viracocha, both the equinoxes and the lunar cycle played the key roles in the Andean calendar.
“…According to the authoritative study The Andean Calendar by L.E. Valcarcel, such a fixing and veneration of the equinoxes was carried into Inca times although they switched from an earlier equinoctial calendar to a solstitial one.
“…The need to adjust the solar calendar over a period of millennia because of the phenomenon of precession and , perhaps, also due to the wavering between a solstitial and an equinoctial New Year, led to repeat reforms of the calendar even in the days of the Ancient Empire…
That such calendar reforms had to do with wavering between solstices and equinoxes is confirmed by the statement that the monarch Manco Capac IV “ordered that the year begin in the spring equinox,” a feat possible because he was an Amauta, a “knower of astronomy.” But evidently in doing so he only reinstated a calendar that had once been in use, in earlier times; for, according to Montesinos, the fortieth monarch who had reigned a thousand years before Manco Capac IV, “established an academy for the study of astronomy and determined the equinoxes, which the Indians called Illa-Ri.
“…In his studies of Andean archaeoastronomy Rolf Muller reported that a site called Pampa de Anta, some ten miles west of Sacsahuaman, the sheer rock has been carved into series of steps that form a semicircle or crescent. Since there is nothing to view there except the promontory at Sacsahuaman to the East, Muller concluded that the place served to make astronomical observations along a sightline anchored on the Sacsahuaman promontory – but apparently, linked to appearances of the Moon. The native name for the edifice, Quillarumi, “Moon Stone,” suggests such a purpose.
“…In fact the early Spanish chroniclers stated repeatedly that the Incas had an elaborate and precise calendar incorporating both solar and lunar aspects… The assertion that the Incas observed both solar and lunar cycles is confirmed by the fact that next to the shrine to the Sun in the Coricancha there was a shrine to the Moon. In the Holy of Holies the central symbol was an ellipse flanked by the Sun on the left and the Moon on the right; it was only the ruler Huascar, one of the two half brothers who were fighting over the throne when the Spaniards arrived, who replaced the oval with a golden disk representing the Sun.
“…These are Mesopotamian calendrical features; finding them in the remote Andes has baffled scholars. Even more perplexing has been the certainty that the Incas were familiar with the zodiac – a wholly arbitrary device for dividing the orbital cycle around the Sun into twelve parts – a Sumerian “first” by all accounts.
“…E.G. Squier, in his report on Cuzco and the meaning of its name (“Navel of the Earth”), noted that the city was divided into twelve wards arranged around the nucleus or “navel” in an elliptical shape, which is the true orbital circuit. Sir Clemens Markham (Cuzco and Lima: The Incas of Peru) quoted the chronicler Garcilaso de la Vega‘s information that the twelve wards represented the twelve zodiacal constellations. Stanbury Hagar… showed that – as in Mesopotamia – the Incas also associated each of the twelve zodiac “houses” with a parallel month in the calendar… (bearing names resembling their Near Eastern names that originated in Sumer).
“…There were other aspects – complex aspects – of the ancient Near Eastern calendars in the calendar that the Incas had retained from the days of the Ancient Empire. The requirement (still in force in the Jewish and Christian calendars) that the spring festival (Passover, Easter) be held when the Sun is in the relevant zodiac house and on or immediately after the first full Moon of that month, forced the ancient priest-astronomers to intercalate the solar and lunar cycles. The studies by R.T. Zuidema and others concluded that only did such intercalation take place in the Andes, but the lunar cycle was additionally linked to two other phenomena: it had to be the first full Moon after the June solstice, and it was to coincide with the first heliacal rising of a certain star. This double correlation is intriguing, for it brings to mind the Egyptian linking of the beginning of their calendrical cycle both to the solar date (rising of the Nile) and the heliacal rising of a star (Sirius).
“…Some twenty miles northeast of Cuzco, at a place called Pisac, there are remains of a structure, probably from early Inca times, that appear to have been an attempt to emulate and combine some of the sacred structures at Machu Picchu…
“…At a place not far from Sacsahuaman called Kenko, a large semicircle or well-shaped ashlars fronts on a large stone monolith that could have had the shape of an animal (the features are too damaged to be discerned); whether or not this edifice had astronomical-calendrical functions is unknown. These sites added to those of Machu Picchu, Sacsahuaman, and Cuzco, illustrate the fact that in what has been called the Sacred Valley – and only there – religion, the calendar, and astronomy led to the construction of circular or semicircular observatories; nowhere else in South America do we find such structures.
Kenko shrine ruins.
Kenko shrine ruins.
Kenko shrine ruins.
“…Who was it who, at about the same time, applied the same set of astronomical principles and adopted a circular shape for celestial observations in early Britain, at Lagash in Sumer, and in South America’s Ancient Empire?
“…All legends, supported by geographical evidence and archaeological finds, point to the southern shores of Lake Titicaca as the place of the South American Beginning – not only of human civilization, but of the gods themselves. It was there, according to the legends, that the repopulation of the Andeans lands began after the Deluge; that the gods, headed by Viracocha, had their abode; that the couples destine to begin the Ancient Empire were given knowledge, route instructions, and the Golden Wand with which to locate the site of the Navel of the Earth – of establishing Cuzco.
“…Insofar as human beginnings in the Andes are concerned, the tales connected them to two distinct islands off the southern shore of Lake Titicaca. They were called the Island of the Sun and the Island of the Moon, the two luminaries having been considered as the two principal helpers of Viracocha; the calendrical symbolism inherent in these tales has been noted by many scholars. The abode of Viracocha was, however, in a City of the Gods on the mainland at the lake’s southern shore. The place, called Tiahuanacu, was settled by the gods (according to local lore) in times immemorial; it was, the legends related, a place of colossal structures that only giants could erect.
“…By the end of the nineteenth century the reports assumed a more scientific accuracy as a result of the visits of researchers… the most renowned and tenacious researcher of Tiahuanacu, Arthur Posnansky (Tiahuanacu – The Cradle of American Man). Their work and more recent excavations and studies, reviewed at length in The Lost Realms, have led us to conclude that Tiahuanacu was the tin capital of the ancient world, that its extensive above-ground and underground structures were metallurgical facilities, that the huge one-piece multiwalled stone blocks were part of port facilities at the ancient lakeshore, and that Tiahuanacu was founded not by Man but by the Anunnaki “gods” in their search for gold long before Man was taught the uses of tin.
Foundations at Tiahuanacu.
Foundations at Tiahuanacu.
Foundations at Tiahuanacu.
“…Where a narrow and rare plain fanned out from the southern shore of Lake Titicaca, the sight of the once magnificent Tiahuanacu and its port (nowadays called Puma-Punku), only three principal monuments to its past dominate the landscape:
- the artificial hill of Akapana, believed to have been a step pyramid as a facility for the separation and processing of ores.
- the “Gate of the Sun,” the single stone block from which it was cut and shaped, measured about 10 by 20 feet and weight more than 100 tons.
“…The most enigmatic and elaborate carvings are on the upper front side, facing due east. There the arch of the gate has been carved to depict in relief a central figure – probably of Viracocha – flanked on each side by three rows of winged attendants.
The artificial hill of Akapana.
Gate of the Sun
Gate of the Sun
“…The writings of Posnansky have established that the carvings on the gate represented a twelve-month calendar of a year beginning on the day of spring equinox in the southern hemisphere (September), yet a year where the other major points of the solar year – the autumn equinox and the two solstices – are also indicated by the positions and shapes of the depicted smaller images. It was, he concluded, a calendar of eleven months of thirty days each plus a “great month,” a twelfth month of thirty-five days, adding up to a solar year of 365 days.
“…A twelve-month year beginning on the day of the spring equinox was, as we now know, first introduced at Nippur, in Sumer, circa 3800 B.C.
“…The “Gate of the Sun,” archaeologists have discovered, stands at the northwest corner of what was a wall constructed of upright stone pillars that formed a rectangular enclosure within which the third most prominent edifice of the site stood. Some believe that there was originally a similar gate at the southwestern corner of the enclosure, flanking symmetrically a row of thirteen monoliths erected in the precise center of the enclosure’s western wall. That row of monoliths, part of a special platform faced exactly the monumental stairway that was built at the center of the eastern wall, on the enclosure’s opposite side. The monumental stairway which was unearthed and restored, led to a series of raised rectangular platforms that encompassed a sunken courtyard.
Given the name Kalasasaya (“The Standing Pillars”), the edifice was thus oriented precisely along an east-west axis, in the manner of the Near Eastern temples. This was the first clue that it could have served astronomical purposes…
“…The realization that this ancient structure, more than twenty thousand feet up the Andean mountains, in a desolate, narrow plain among snowbound mountains, was a sophisticated calendrical observatory was compounded by discoveries regarding its age. Posnansky was the first to conclude that the angles formed by the lines of sight suggested an obliquity somewhat greater than the present declination of 23.5º; it meant, he himself was astounded to realize, that the Kalasasaya had been designed and built thousands of years before the Common Era.
“…Investigations and thorough measurements left no doubt that the obliquity prevailing at the time of construction was such that the Kalasasaya could have been built circa 4050 B.C. or (as the Earth tilted back and forth) circa 10,050 B.C. Muller, who had arrived at a date of just over 4000 B.C. for the megalithic remains at Machu Picchu, was inclined likewise to date the Kalasasaya – a conclusion with which Posnansky in the end agreed.
“…In The Lost Realms we presented the evidence and arrived at the conclusion that it was the same Anunnaki, those who had come to Earth from Nibiru in need of gold. And, like the men who searched for the golden El Dorado millennia later, they also came to the New World in search of gold. The mines in southeastern Africa were flooded by the Deluge; but the same upheaval uncovered the incredibly rich veins of gold in the Andes.
“…We believe that Anu and his spouse Antu, visiting Earth from Nibiru circa 3800 B.C., also went to see for themselves the new metallurgical center on the southern shore of Lake Titicaca. They left by sailing away on the lake from the port facilities of Puma Punku, where the cyclopean chambers, carved and shaped out a single stone blocks, then stood along massive piers.
T-shaped cutouts in adjoining stones for bronze clamps – Puma Punku.
Slab of Puma Punku Pyramid.
“…The remains at Puma Punku hold another enigmatic clue to the amazing link between the structures at Lake Titicaca and the unusual temple to Ninurta that Gudea built. To the disbelief of the site’s excavators, they found that the megalithic builders had used bronze clamps, formed to fit T-shaped cutouts in adjoining stones, to hold together the huge stone blocks. Such a clamping method, and such a use of bronze, were unique to the Megalithic Age, having been found only at Puma Punku and at another site of cyclopean megaliths, Ollantaytambu, some forty-five miles northwest of Cuzco in the Sacred Valley.
“…Yet thousand of miles away, on the other side of the world, at Lagash in Sumer, Gudea used the very same unique method and the very same unique bronze clamps to hold together the stones that, imported from afar, were used in the construction of the Eninnu. Recording in his inscriptions the unusual use of stones and of metals, this is how Gudea lauded his own achievements:
He built the Eninnu with stone,
he made it bright with jewels;
with copper mixed with tin [bronze]
he held it fast.
“…It was a feat for which a Sangu Simug, a “priestly smith,” was brought over from the “Land of Smelting.” It was, we believe, Tiahuanacu in the Andes.