The Ancient El Fuerte Fortress, Bolivia

20 07 2012

Mysteries in the Ancient Inca Settlement

It was a strange day at El Fuerte. Winding along the eastern foothill of the Andes Mountains in a 12-seater minivan with a demon behind the wheel was a hair-raising experience in itself. How we didn´t crash or run over a dog is beyond me. The archaeological site is full of mystery and symbolism I don´t quite understand, and to top it off my camera inexplicably stopped working. Was it just a surreal day, or is there something more mysterious about El Fuerte?

To get to El Fuerte from Santa Cruz in Bolivia, you have two options. A private taxi for around 200 Boliviano’s (£17) or a shared minibus to Samaipata for 30 Bolivianos (£2.60) with Expreso Rapido Samaipata (366 2312), then arrange a trip to El Fuerte with one of the tour operators in the village. The second option was my plan.

It changed slightly however, as a young German couple also wanting to go to El Fuerte agreed a fee with the mad taxi driver to take us to the ruins and back to Santa Cruz. He gave us a good price so I tagged along.

El Fuerte Museum, Samaipata

The majority of the mini-busload was locals of Samaipata. Some were dropped off by the roadside on the way up the mountain, the rest in the town. Whilst the driver finished making his house calls with the village post I went to the small museum with the German couple Annaka and Ferde.

The museum is small, but we only had 15-minutes – and ten of those were spent watching a video about El Fuerte which basically told us, nobody knows a great deal about the settlement. As I would come to discover on my travels to archaeological sites around South America that is a common claim by scholars, but for me, that was not the only pattern that emerged. Life in the world of our ancient ancestors also came to light.

At the time of visiting El Fuerte however, not of what I would discover about the Inca and other ancient civilisation was apparent. However, I had done a lot of reading before embarking on my journey through South America and knew a little about this ancient settlement.

As we climbed the trail and stopped to admire the view of the ruins and the surrounding hills I tell the Germans, “El Fuerte is the largest rock carving in the world.” The air is thin and I am breathing heavily, not yet acclimatised to the altitude. “It’s shrouded in mystery.” When I saw this so-called “largest rock carving in the world,” I am not convinced it is true. This is not the first time I would discover scholars get their facts wrong!

Ancient El Fuerte Fortress built by Mojocoyan Indians

El Fuerte is believed to have been built by the Mojocoyan culture who inhabited the area around 300 AD. They will have started the building works long before the Inca arrived in the 1300’s. Before the Inca the surrounding valleys were populated by the Chane culture who were repeatedly attacked by Guarani warriors. When the Incas arrived they made a pact with the Chane to help fend off the enemy, but when the Spanish arrived the area had succumbed to the Guarani’s.

The Spanish gave the site its name, El Fuerte (The Fort) because of its fortress like shape. Archaeologists are undecided. Some believe it was used for religious ceremonies, others suggest it was used as a central meeting place where tribal leaders from the surrounding areas gathered to participate in spiritual rituals.

“So basically, nobody knows what it is,” said Annaka.

“Exactly,” I said. “Erich von Daniken thinks the parallel lines carved into the rock there is a landing pad for alien spaceships.”

“Ha, ha, Von Daniken,” Annaka laughs. “He’s an interesting character.”

In his book “Chariots of the Gods,” Erich von Daniken presents a theory that human beings were injected by alien DNA. Anybody who has seen the ancient alien theory on the history channel may be convinced this is true as some of the evidence presented in compelling. You can´t say the same about El Fuerte.

The Link Between Ancient Snakes and Human DNA

Gorged out of the rock are two huge lines that run parallel to one another. The lines are known locally as El Dorso de la Serpiente (The Snakes Back), due to two intertwining cross-spirals that run down either side of the grooves to give it a snake-like impression.

Because of damage caused by tourists visitors are forbidden to go on the rock therefore a close-up inspection was not possible. Also, because the memory card (of a one month old camera) packed up as I came out of the site I don´t have photographs to show you here, but you can visit here and here for visual images. The first picture is what von Daniken believes is an alien landing strip, but why would alien aircraft need a slope and why is there no evidence of anything else quite like it?

You will note the “Serpent’s Back” in the second image looks remarkably like the double helix which depicts the human DNA. In his book, The Cosmic Serpent, Jeremy Narby, an anthropologist conducted research into Shamanism and molecular biology and concluded that snakes that appear in Shamanic and ancient legends are directly linked with the human DNA.

He bases his hypothesis on the startling similarities reported by Shaman’s who communicate with the ‘spirits’ of nature with those discovered by scientists examining DNA. Shamans claim the hallucogen found in cactus plants like Ayahuasca and San Pedro help them transcend on to a higher dimension where they are able to communicate with nature. They say because God is nature, the spirits present themselves to them in their visions.

The snake is a symbol of wisdom, or knowledge, in ancient cultures all over the world. Shamans say the cosmic serpent is the creation of life. They describe it as two snakes intertwined with each other, an image that replicates the double helix of DNA identified under the microscopes of scientists.

It is also a known fact that all living cells on the planet contain DNA and are filled with salt water. The legends of mythical serpents also make reference to water. Likewise, DNA is the informational molecule of life and that the basic mechanisms are identical for all species; just like with the serpents described in popular myth around the world.

If Narby’s connection is right it could be that the spiral lines at El Fuerte were carved into the rock as a dedication to life and the origins of knowledge, therefore the site is more likely to have been used for ritual ceremonies rather than a fort. One thing for certain is Andean cultures placed a lot of importance on esoteric wisdom and went out of their way to pay tribute to the cosmos. I certainly wasn´t buying Von Daniken’s theory based on this evidence!

Ancient Orgies at El Fuerte

One of the more interesting and realistic theories about this rock and the carvings etched into it, is they were used to observe the rising of Venus and Jupiter. Archaeo-astronomers predict the event was due to took place at sunrise on the 20th August 1066. So why did the Mojocoyan Indians who lived here go to such extraordinary lengths some 700 years before the cosmic event took place. It must have some immense connection of importance to mankind. Venus certainly was an obsession with ancient civilisations.

Also carved into the red sandstone rock are two prominent reliefs in the form of a domestic cat.

“In Inca religion the cat represented motherhood and fertility,” I tell the Germans. “It also represents promiscuity.”

“Perhaps they came here for orgies,” Ferde said.

According to ancient tradition, the rocks at El Fuerte link the mountains to the sun. The rock is also known to emit high levels of energy. In what is described as a residential area, small alcoves, big enough for an ancient Andean to stand in, are built into the wall.

Andean cultures worshipped the Sun as a god and I considered whether the alcoves might have been used as some kind of meditation capsule the Indians stood in to help them transcend into the Upper World. I would later learn the alcoves are where they ancients stored their dead until burial.

Just beyond the residential area are several stone-built enclosures that looked remarkably like Roman baths we find scattered across Europe. The German couple agreed they shared a resemblance with Roman structures they had seen in Germany. Ferde’s idea about orgies suddenly seemed a plausible possibility.

On the other hand I felt these “baths” could have been used for some form of cleansing. Or perhaps they were just baths for bathing in. Water played a major role in the rituals and belief system of Andean tribes. Water is said to wash away worries and fears and give the body balance. In fact, we see water used in many religions around the world for spiritual cleansing. Roman Catholics use holy water to ward off evil spirits.

Mysterious Tunnels at El Fuerte

In the far corner of the complex was a path lined with trees either side. They met in the middle to form a foliaged archway. The downhill slope had steps built into it and zig-zagged back and forth. It seemed to be leading nowhere, but there was a mysteriousness that compelled us to keep going.

When we reached the bottom we found a well. “I’ve read about this well” I said. “It’s so deep that if you dropped a penny down you won’t hear it hit the bottom.” I looked into the well and found discarded pop bottles a short distance down. “Oh!,” I say slightly bemused, “Perhaps this is a different well.”

“Is this the underground passage that was mentioned in the video [at the museum]?” Ferde asked.

“It could be.”

“But where does it go?” Annaka said.

There was a path running down by the side of the well, but it was closed off to visitors and we couldn’t see where it led although it looked like it went into the rock. I’ve heard stories of Incas building roads and tunnels that covered great distances. In fact, they’d built a road that ran from Samaipata to Tiwanaku almost 1000 kilometres (621 miles) apart.

But for us the route of the tunnel at El Feurte would remain as much of a mystery as the grooved tram lines and the “Roman baths.”

Back in the mini-bus we rattled back down the mountain side headed for Santa Cruz. The journey back was even more of a white-knuckle ride than getting here. To show his intention to overtake the taxi driver rides on the bumper of the car in front and beeps his horn, a demonic stare firmly fixed on his face.

A young dog, no older than three, was eating in the middle of the road. As the taxi driver risked another crazy overtake we hurtled towards it. He looked up from his food, but didn’t move, didn’t panic. He had nowhere to go so stood his ground and accepted death. My heart stopped. Annaka gasped. The taxi driver swerved in the nick of time. A smile parted his lips, a mystery to rival El Fuerte.





The Ancient Traveller

20 07 2012

Travel has opened my mind to a whole new world. This blog will let you into some dark, hidden and controversial secrets that may, shock, surprise, fright and excite. Although I am labelled as a “conspiracy nut” by politicians, mainstream scholars and the media, the content on this blog is factual and based on real evidence that can be found in archaeological sites, information collected from interviews together with alternative historical and archaeological accounts.

The only reason conspiracy theorists are called “nuts” by narrow-minded scholars and politicians is because we explore in greater depth evidence they can´t – or won´t –  explain. It´s only because the answers we find challenge their threadbare theories and traditional believes that they defend themselves by discrediting alternative views and labelling researchers as retarded.

In today´s world however, the evidence mounting against orthodox teachings is so overwhelming that even the mainstream media are acknowledging that the stalwarts in the scholarly community are most probably wrong! Read this article published by the BBC and you will get a glimpse of who the real conspiracy nuts are! If you don´t believe me travel to ancient sites around the world and discover the truth for yourself!