Beneath Teotihuacan’s Pyramid of the Sun.
Further Explorations in the “Place Where Gods Were Born”
By Marita Adair
It’s not breaking news that a long series of caves, or interconnected chambers, exist below Mexico’s Pyramid of the Sun at the massive Teotihuacan archeological site near Mexico City. They have been mapped for some time. But new explorations that began in 2005 continue again for a third and final season beginning July 1. http://dti.inah.gob.mx/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1000&Itemid=150
Spelunking doesn’t apply, in case you’re wondering, even though they are called caves. By all accounts these had sacred significance and ceremonial use. However, somewhere in time most chambers were blockaded and their purpose is part of the mystery
The chamber of interest this year is a large man-made one just below the main façade/platform of the Pyramid of the Sun. According to Alejandro Sarabia Gonzalez, project director, and director of Teotihuacan “The objective of the new exploration is to determine events that happened in there and to obtain elements that allow discovering its meaning and the reason why it was covered completely.”
As it always is with this sort of exploration, new discoveries and questions lead to new studies. Thus the multi-era platforms at the foot of the main façade also became part of the study, as did a tunnel dug at the beginning of the 20th century.
Occupation of Teotihuacan was begun around 100 A.D. and the Pyramid of the Sun dates from between the first and second centuries A.D. Even then the caves were central to life and beliefs. The Pyramid of the Sun was “centered on the cave’s entrance and dedicated to the Great Goddess and the god of storm, lightening and rain” according to authors of the book Teotihuacan, Art from the City of the Gods (Thames & Hudson, 1993) http://www.amazon.com/Teotihuacan-City-Gods-Kathleen-Berrin/dp/0500277672. The position of the cave figured in the orientation of the pyramid and the setting sun. The book has an excellent drawing of the line of interlocking chambers.
Archeological explorations are ongoing in many parts of this site that once covered 20 square miles and held 125,000 inhabitants. http://dti.inah.gob.mx/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=810&Itemid=150 Tremendous influence from these unknown inhabitants has been recorded as far south as Guatemala. Alas, no one knows yet what the people of this city looked like, what they called themselves, or why they abandoned the city after more than 600 years of use. Photos of Teotihuacan are at http://www.sacred-destinations.com/mexico/teotihuacan.htm Specialized tours of Teotihuacan started in April 2008 and are described at http://dti.inah.gob.mx/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=695&Itemid=49 For tour reservations, and possibly more details, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.