By: April Carson
An 11,000-year-old Karahantepe complex in Turkey was used for religious activities before it was deliberately buried with dirt, according to archaeologists. An ancient structure containing phallus-shaped pillars and carvings was discovered inside. Archaeologists believe that people walked through this structure during ceremonies.
In Turkey, archaeologists have discovered an 11,000-year-old ceremonial center
Karahantepe is in the Armenian Highlands' south (the current Turkey). It is not far from Gebekli Tepe, the world's oldest large megalithic structure. The age of Gebekli Tepe has been estimated at 12 thousand years, while Karahantepe has been dated to 11 thousand years old.
The archaeological survey has now entered its third year. Researchers discovered a chamber with a diameter of 23 meters this season. The majority of it is carved into the rock in such a manner that the structure is concealed 5.5 meters below the surface. A rather odd sculptural arrangement was observed in the room itself, according to experts.
The work of art depicts a man with a broad forehead, thick lips, and a beard in the center. The eyes of the figure are directed toward the doorway. Twin pillars measuring 1.6 to 1.7 meters tall are carved in the form of phalluses on either side of the head. In general, 11 columns were discovered throughout the chamber.
Archaeologists suggest that the room, which is believed to be unique in Gobekli Tepe's history, may have served as a sort of last supper for those who built it. "We know that big round structures like this were not used as threshing floors," Schmidt added.
This structure is linked to three others via corridors, which form a sort of complex together. Because no domestic items were discovered there, it's probable that the area was used for ritual activities. According to experts, Karahantepe served as a ceremonial center where people entered from one end and exited from the other. But this is just a guess for now.
The Complex: Buried but not abandoned
Another thing is a lot more intriguing. All structures have not been abandoned or destroyed, as some may believe. They were literally buried. In addition, the grounds were covered with dirt to protect the sculptures there (hence the excellent preservation, only some of the pillars were destroyed by erosion). Carving sculptures is an art form that requires great skill and knowledge. Therefore, it's unlikely that people living in this area were capable of producing such works.
The most likely explanation is that the structures in this area date back to a much earlier period or even belonged to an alien civilization.
This was also suggested by German archaeologist Klaus Schmidt (who died in 2014), founder and director of excavations of the nearby site of Göbekli Tepe.
It's also possible that the premises were sacrificed to the gods. It's even conceivable that a building's entire life cycle, from inception to burial, was part of one communal ritual. But there is another telling of the story. According to Karul, the burial grounds were packed unevenly. They didn't just throw what they had on hand; they buried specific items by design. For Karul the evidence points to the existence of a class system.
"The difference between who's getting buried there is not merely socioeconomic or subsistence related, because there are no grave goods in some burials," he says. "It has to do with what they did for their living." The imagery on the pillars, meanwhile, reveals a similar level of specialization. For example, Karul points to Pillar 43.
The ritual pillars were evidently strengthened with big stones before they were buried. Second, the steps were separately filled with little pebbles and separated off, ensuring that rocks from the staircase would not pierce into the room with the sculptures and damage them. Last, large flat slabs were used to close the buildings after they had been filled.
Why go through all of this trouble if the structure is going to be removed from use? It's reasonable to assume that the "burial" was only temporary, with people anticipating future excavation and usage of the site.
Is there a link between Gobekli Tepe and Karahantepe?
Some of the sculptures discovered earlier in Karahantepe were quite similar to those from Gebekli Tepe. Today, archaeologists are seeking for a link between these sites located close together but separated by hundreds of years in time.
Unfortunately, we have no information on how the buildings at Gebekli Tepe were filled with rock: this may turn out to be one of the most interesting stories to come out of this site.
One of the most important questions relating to Gebekli Tepe is why were these structures created in such a way? What did they sign up for when building a hill with limestone rocks and leaving behind works of art that have been dated back 11,000 years?
It is hard to imagine why people would have carried these heavy rocks, especially without the help of modern construction tools. Also, it remains a mystery how they managed to transport 4-ton stones if they didn't even have wheels.
They said to Yeshua, "Isn't it in your Torah that I said you are gods?" John 10:34. This was the original message, but over time, religious authorities have tampered with it by convincing you that you do not have any power.
About the Blogger:
April Carson is the daughter of Billy Carson. She received her bachelor's degree in Social Sciences from Jacksonville University, where she was also on the Women's Basketball team. She now has a successful clothing company that specializes in organic baby clothes and other items. Take a look at their most popular fall fashions on bossbabymav.com
To read more of April's blogs, check out her website! She publishes new blogs on a daily basis, including the most helpful mommy advice and baby care tips! Follow on IG @bossbabymav
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