Discovering and knowing a culture as important and ancient as TIWANAKU, is something unmissable, for the historical and cultural value of this site. Let's start with this journey into the mysteries and wonders of a millennial culture, and try to rediscover an ancestral legacy.
I want to bring you to know the mysteries that embrace the Tiwanacota culture, the different theories and doubts regarding its origin and development. The journey begins in the Bolivian Highlands, then we get into the most emblematic ruins and sculptures of Tiwanaku in Bolivia, and why not say it, of South America.
In addition, to better understand, let's try to place Tiwanaku in time. The age officially given to this place, according to the Bolivian Archaeological Institute - based on research by Mr Carlos Ponce Sanjinés - is 1580 years before Christ for its inception. We must recognize that this data is incorrect, since this was obtained thanks to a Carbon 14 test performed in a well that was dug in this area in the 1960s.
The aforementioned well had a depth of 2 meters, depth at which groundwater was found. Unfortunately, this Carbon 14 system is not exactly the best and most reliable. In addition, the Carbon 14 system works only with organic materials, and finding water at that depth assumes that it was not possible to date what was below this level, as the water broke down and destroyed this organic material indispensable to this method. Another problem with Carbon 14 is that it takes a lot of testing to be able to date a sample, and this is not the case in Tiwanaku.
However, what we can say is that Tiwanaku is at least the age mentioned. Therefore, these ruins are even older. According to several archaeologists, Tiwanaku is about 5,000 years old before Christ for its inception. If this theory is correct, we could say that this culture already existed at the same time as Egypt, Mesopotamia, Maya and others. To try to check this out, you can mention certain characteristics in Tiwanaku found in these other cultures, demonstrating the relationship that may have been between them. It is important to remember that, for example, in certain Egyptian mummies, tobacco and coca were found that could only come from South America.
One person who dedicated several expeditions on this subject was the Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl. He already had the idea of the connection between these great millennial cultures. For example, in the 1940s, he successfully conducted the Kon-Tiki expedition. Then, in the 1970s, the RA II expedition was also successful. The first tested a connection between South America and Polynesian cultures, and the second tested the connection between Egyptians and South American cultures.
(Replica of the boat RA II)
In Tiwanaku we find remnants of a very advanced culture that leaves us totally perplexed and admired for the fine and impressive work left by its inhabitants in such a remote time, is the case of the following figures that we observe in these photographs.
(Fantastic technique to work granite)
No one today can explain how they managed to move such blocks of sandstone and granite - which in many cases weigh more than 100 tons - for more than 40 to 60 km without wheels, cranes and other technology that we know today.
This culture had great knowledge of mathematics, astronomy and medicine, among other areas. All this we see in the discoveries made on this site, where we also appreciate exquisite designs in their monoliths, fabrics and goldsmithing. We're definitely talking about a very advanced culture.
Its end was very dramatic and catastrophic, since back in 1100 AD, there was a great climatic change, according to archaeologists Alan Colata and Olsvaldo Rivera. According to these archaeologists, in that year began a great drought that lasted about 80 years, something that this culture - which was mainly dedicated to agriculture - could not bear, and over the years succumbed and the end of its great civilization.
In Tiwanaku we also find traces of a great flood, apparently caused by a tsunami that came with great violence from Lake Titicaca, covering everything with mud and bringing great destruction, thus ending this wonder of our history.
Tiwanaku is definitely a place that deserves to be visited. It seems incredible to think that not enough talk about this emblematic culture, that is why I invite you to visit Bolivia, to live an extraordinary experience and learn a little more than what unfolded in this part of the continent, in a very distant past.