Friday, July 17, 2009

Day 40, Intihuatana Stones, Peru

One of Machu Picchu's primary functions was that of astronomical observatory.

The Intihuatana stone (meaning 'Hitching Post of the Sun') has been shown to be a precise indicator of the date of the two equinoxes and other significant celestial periods. The Intihuatana (also called the Saywa or Sukhanka stone) is designed to hitch the sun at the two equinoxes. At midday on March 21st and September 21st, the sun stands almost directly above the pillar, creating no shadow at all. At this precise moment the sun "sits with all his might upon the pillar" and is for a moment "tied" to the rock. At these periods, the Incas held ceremonies at the stone in which they "tied the sun" to halt its northward movement in the sky.

Shamanic legends say that when sensitive persons touch their foreheads to the stone, the Intihuatana opens one's vision to the spirit world.

Hmm, I want to open my "third" eye, but the stone is cordoned off :-((

Intihuatana stones were the supremely sacred objects of the Inca people and were systematically searched for and destroyed by the Spaniards. When the Intihuatana stone was broken at an Inca shrine, the Inca believed that the deities of the place died or departed.
Thank goodness, the Spaniards never found Machu Picchu, even though they suspected its existence, thus the Intihuatana stone and its resident spirits remain in their original position.
Hmm, Sita would like to look into the geometry of the stone.....

Nobody knows the exact history of Machu Picchu....
Some say the city was built by the Sapa Inca Pachacuti starting in about 1440 and was inhabited until the Spanish conquest of Peru in 1532.

Perhaps Machu Picchu was not a conventional city, but a country retreat town for Incan nobility??
The site has a large palace and temples to Incan deities around a courtyard, with other buildings for support staff and it is estimated that a maximum of only about 750 people resided in Machu Picchu at any one time.

It is likely that most of its inhabitants were wiped out by smallpox before the Spanish conquistadores arrived in the area.

Another theory maintains that
Machu Picchu was an Inca "llacta", a settlement built to control the economy of these conquered regions.

Yet another asserts that it may have been built as a prison for a select few who had committed heinous crimes against Inca society.

Hopefully, we will know its secrets some day........... but for now, the mystery lingers.........

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