A Blog on Mythology and occasionally on Reality.

This is a Blog on Mythology, both Indian and World and especially the analysis of the myths.

In effect, the interpretation of the inherent Symbolism.


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Nazca Lines

During one of my recent readings, I came across something which is better known as the Nazca Lines. The subject was so intriguing and interesting that I couldn’t help but go behind it deeper, as it had something to do with mythology too. The details below are just the tip of an iceberg of information, but the idea is to introduce the concept to many who might not have heard about it. If this generates any interest and you decide to know more about it, do share with me on this Blog, as any information is worth a lot and could also help see things in a different perspective.
The Nazca Geoglyphs
Before I begin, I would like define a term, ‘geoglyphs’. Geoglyphs are works of art that are made from moving or arranging stores or earth or any other matter in a given landscape.
Nazca Lines are massive lines created on the surface of the earth to form different designs and motifs, in the Nazca Desert, Southern Peru. Scholars believe that the lines were created by the people belonging to the Nazca culture between 400 and 650AD. There are hundreds of figures on the ground, ranging from simple to complex designs which resemble monkeys, humming birds, spiders, whales, etc., besides figures which might not mean much to modern man. By itself this is not a big deal, but what makes this worth noticing is the enormity of it. Some of these figures are so huge that from the ground they mean nothing, but an ariel view can make sense and decipher the designs. Some of the figures are over 1000 feet wide. It is this aspect of the figures which make it impressive, especially in the absence of any air-bound travel arrangement then.
So who conceived such figures and how were they drawn, besides why were they drawn at all? The figures are an enigma to say the least and the theories that have been propounded around it are even more so.

Killer Whale

Amongst the numerous theories being given, one of them says that the people of the Nazca culture made these figures for their gods to see them from the heavens. It further said that the people worshipped mountains and other water sources and these lines probably were drawn based on the availability of water, which had its relevance to the agriculture, which was the mainstay of the Nazca people. These figures could have been symbols for invoking the blessings of the god for getting water. Yet another theory goes on to say that the animals and figures are of those, who must have perished in the Great Flood which must have lashed the region and the same was made to make a sort of a permanent ‘memorial’ for people not to forget the Great Flood. This Great Flood is found in every culture (from Christians to Sumerians to the Aztecs and Mayans to Indian).


A major theory ascribes these figures to Astronomy. According to the theory, the lines depict important stars and constellations and events like the solstices. This is based more on the figures of spider and the monkey, which depict the star constellations like Orion and Ursa Mayor. However, the biggest challenge in proving this theory is the fact that the direction of the stars change in centuries due to the concept of ‘precession’, which is a subject by itself. (In astronomy, "precession" refers to any of several slow changes in an astronomical body's rotational or orbital parameters – Wikipedia). However, many of the theories have more or less touched this aspect.
Finally, the most interesting theory – according to the Swiss author Erich von Daniken, these complex structures could have something to do with the extra-terrestrial influence on the then human culture. According to him, some of the structures could just be ‘run-ways’ of an ancient airfield, which was used by the ET’s, mistaken by the Nazca people as their gods! However, ludicrous this sounds; one thing that has to be accepted is that the then people had access to some higher technological knowhow when these figures were created. On the surface, without an ariel view, it is near impossible to create such structures. So who did them and how? Is this proof of a more evolved and technologically competent civilization? Is this an evidence of the fact that the ET’s did have contact with the civilization in those days?
As always, any discussion on Nazca Lines raises more questions than answers and I too would have done exactly the same. We pride ourselves as being the most evolved and intelligent living beings and at times even credit ourselves with ‘creating’ divinity – but this begs to differ. There are no answers and theories range from rational ones to speculative ones to absolutely absurd ones – all trying to guess what is not recorded or mentioned, except that they hint to the existence of an intelligent civilization.
Finally, after I have concluded the article (!), I want to touch on one more theory, which is not propounded by the scholars, but forwarded by the locals, who stay around the area. According to these locals, these figures are not the work of men of the times; it is the work of Viracocha, the creator-god of the pre-Inca inhabitants of the Peru.
Next time we will learn more about Viracocha which is an interesting study!

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