Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Inca: Occupiers or Creators – Part VII

Continuing from the previous six posts, several examples have been shown how the Inca construction differed considerably from the older, more exact and precise building of a more ancient people.
Those who built the magnificent structures in Peru and the Andes had a knowledge of building far beyond that of other people. As an example, according to the Engineering News-Record, Civil engineers and other researchers working under a $90,000 National Science Foundation grant are studying the ancient highway system of South America for clues to help modern society build roads, bridges and other infrastructure that last longer and have a less harmful impact on the environment. This past July, researchers spent 10 days in the Peruvian highlands walking about 30 miles of the road northeast of Huaraz; they used ground-penetrating radar to probe the subgrade, and they used satellite equipment to report findings in real time to colleagues in the United States.
Left: An ancient Peruvian road near the town of Castillo. Note the new paved cut cutting across the ancient thoroughfare; Right: The ancient highway that went from Ecuador to Chile, a distance of 3,200 miles
“When the Conquistadors came, they said that the road was better than the Roman roads in Spain.” Ancient Peruvians also built other stone structures near or integrated into the road—culverts, ditches, sidewalls—to accommodate water flows and support side slopes,” said Clifford J. Schexnayder, a retired professor at Arizona State University, Tempe. “Hydraulic pressure, as with today’s solid-concrete retaining walls and levees, was likely not a problem due to the permeability of these stones. Today, some asphalt and concrete pavements are being designed with permeability in mind.”
Left: While the Egyptian stonework followed a horizontal plane, the South American stonework is polygonal, apparently following neither vertical nor horizontal planes, a process which would have required a considerably higher level of technical skill. The masonry of South America is probably the finest the world has ever seen; Right: The unusual granite stonework at Puma Punku at Tiwanaku, considered the oldest stone structures on Earth, that fit perfectly without mortar
The stonework at Puma Punku (Door of the Puma), just south of Lake Titicaca in the ruins called Tiwanaku (Tiahuanaco), are considered by modern builders some of the most advanced stonework ever seen among ancient ruins. Even with modern-day technology and machinery, archaeologists believe that replicating these stone structures would be difficult, if at all possible. Those who built this area would have been very sophisticated, knowing astronomy and mathematics. To build a place like Puma Punku, experts say there had to have been a great deal of planning and writing, to have made these finely cut stones. The cuts are all perfectly straight, the holes cored into them are perfect, and all of equal depth, and were cut to interlock and fit together like a giant puzzle—when fitted together they created a structure four levels high, or about forty to fifty feet.
The slabs of rock at Puma Punku said to have once been a huge wharf. The port wharf with a massive four-part building, is now an area filled with enormous stone blocks scattered around the ground like matchsticks, with several weighing between 100 and 150 tons.  One block still in place is estimated to weigh 440 tons. So noticeably impressive are the stones and megaliths is their sheer size, which has given certain sites an almost 'mythological' status, with local traditions often claiming that they were fashioned by 'giants' or 'gods.' As an example, a story was told by the local Aymara natives to a Spanish traveler who visited Tiahuanaco shortly after the conquest. He said that the city's original foundation was placed in the age of Chamac Pacha, or First Creation,  long before the coming of the Incas. Its earliest inhabitants, they said, possessed supernatural powers, for which they were able miraculously to lift stones off the ground, which "...were carried [from the mountain quarries] through the air to the sound of a trumpet.”
While legends are far too often exaggerated, they usually contain some segment of the truth, and here we find that these ruins at Tiwanaku are both dated to an ancient age, and verified to an ancient time by the indigenous natives at the time of the Spanish conquistadors. What is important about this is the fine work, showing an advanced engineering technology admitted to be unbelievably advanced even by today’s standards.
Does this sound like something the Inca could have achieved in a mere 90 years, while fighting on three fronts and conquering some 100 different tribes and nations? Hardly.
Once again, let’s take a look at the stonework ability of the Inca.
On an ancient wall in Cuzco, we have on the right, the original wall built long before the Inca, showing an ancient technology of perfectly fitted large stones precisely cut and angled; Right: On the left and at the top, the later Inca work, using their typical small stones with which they worked to cover the original wall
Another ancient pre-Inca wall in Cuzco, with Inca additions along the far left top, once again using the small stones
Inca stonework repair. The Inca fitted their small rocks on the massive stones that weighed many tons built by an ancient, pre-Inca people
This wall behind the Peruvian woman was built entirely by the Inca. Note how the rocks do not fit well, and compare with wall at right of pre-Inca stonework by a more ancient people
Since it is obvious the Inca simply lacked the advanced engineering skills of the ancient builders of Cuzco, Sacsayhuaman, Ollantaytambo and numerous other sites, the question has to be asked. Who could have built such magnificent stonework as that found found all over Peru?
The only plausible answer is that it was built by the Nephites.
“And it came to pass that the Lord told me whither I should go to find ore, that I might make tools (1 Nephi 17:10)…the Lord did show me from time to time after what manner I should work the timbers… now I, Nephi, did not work the timbers after the manner which was learned by men, neither did I build the ship after the manner of men; but I did build it after the manner which the Lord had shown unto me… and I, Nephi, did go into the mount oft, and I did pray oft unto the Lord; wherefore the Lord showed unto me great things (1 Nephi 18:1-3).
It was the Lord who personally instructed Nephi, and it was Nephi who then taught his people how to “build buildings, and to work in all manner of wood, and of iron, and of copper, and of brass, and of steel, and of gold, and of silver, and of precious ores, which were in great abundance… and I, Nephi, did build a temple; and I did construct it after the manner of the temple of Solomon save it were not built of so many precious things; for they were not to be found upon the land, wherefore, it could not be built like unto Solomon's temple. But the manner of the construction was like unto the temple of Solomon; and the workmanship thereof was exceedingly fine (2 Nephi 5:15).
It took a great deal of effort, labor, ingenuity, and persistence to build Sacsayhuaman. “And it came to pass that I, Nephi, did cause my people to be industrious, and to labor with their hands” (2 Nephi 5:16).
Sacsayhuaman, of course, is the City of Nephi (2 Nephi 5:8), later called the City of Lehi-Nephi (Mosiah 7:21; 9:15).

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