Thursday, July 17, 2014

Beyond Indiana Jones, Volume 3 is now on Amazon.com

BEYOND INDIANA JONES, Vol 3

Hollywood missed an opportunity to send Indiana to Upper Egypt in pursuit of the Ark of the Covenant. This is where I begin in Volume 3 before exploring other stories and artifacts.
Go to Amazon.com to Books and then type in my name to view it.







 

Neal Bierling, Archaeological Adventures: Getting High in Peru, Year 2

Neal Bierling, Archaeological Adventures: Getting High in Peru, Year 2: GETTING HIGH in PERU, YEAR 2. Tomorrow, July 18 we are once again trekking back to Peru. This time our 3 adult children and 6 of our ...

Getting High in Peru, Year 2

GETTING HIGH in PERU, YEAR 2.
Tomorrow, July 18 we are once again trekking back to Peru. This time our 3 adult children and 6 of our 7 grand children are coming with us for the first two (plus) weeks. We plan to take them first to Machu Picchu before returning to our flat in Arequipa. Profe and I plan to work in Peru for 5 months. The pics below were taken by Carmen B on our 2013 visit to Machu Picchu.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Getting High in Peru, Archaeological Adventures, Volume 1 and 2 by Neal Bierling


Amazon.com has published two books of Peru on April 3, 2014. Go to their site to books to my name (Neal Bierling) and you will find them. They are meant to be guides to the archaeology of Peru and related treks. Paz. Neal Bierling

Monday, March 10, 2014

Neal Bierling, Archaeological Adventures: Getting High in Peru: Machu Picchu (Old Bird), the...

Neal Bierling, Archaeological Adventures: Getting High in Peru: Machu Picchu (Old Bird), the...: Getting High in Peru: Machu Picchu (Old Bird), the City of Ultimate Hope, Part 2 and Final Blog about our Archaeological Adventures in Peru...

Getting High in Peru: Machu Picchu (Old Bird), the City of Ultimate Hope, Part 2


Getting High in Peru: Machu Picchu (Old Bird), the City of Ultimate Hope, Part 2 and Final Blog about our Archaeological Adventures in Peru in 2013.
Hotel Painting explained below
Google Earth Picture showing Machu Picchu and Wayna Picchu
Above and below is our rest stop after descending Wayna Picchu


We rested after the descent from Wayna Picchu before we finally began our tour of the site. Machu Picchu is a 15th century Inca citadel that stayed hidden from the Spanish conquistadors. This site is not mentioned in any chronicle written by the Spanish. The Quechua people knew it was there, and it was not until 1911 that the North American Hiram Bingham was taken to the site.  Compared to archaeology in the Middle East, excavation of the Inca or pre-Inca sites are in its nascent state. Not enough excavation has happened yet in the region for the Inca scholars to formulate complete typologies of artifacts. 
 Student Pictures below of Machu Picchu
Anna's shot with Wayna Picchu in back
Carmen B.'s shot
Carmen B.'s shot
Carmen B.'s shot
One of the first stopping points where Guide Jesus explains the site
The students are attentive
We are in the Residential Sector
Note the extensive terracing. We are heading for the temples
Fountains continue to flow above and the two below


 
Machu Picchu is an awe-inspiring site that displays the superb construction technique of the Inca unmatched today, an engineering marvel. It was a city, a citadel and temple complex, which included an observatory, that may have housed only 500 Inca, but it may have taken 1000s of Inca to construct this marvel over a period of decades? The guide books recommend a visit of three hours, but this was not nearly enough time for me. But I was tired from the morning climb and knew that I was planning to return in 2014 and perhaps again in 2015 (Ojala). So, with the climb up Wayna Picchu and the tour of the ruins, we were here more than 6 hours, but this not enough onsite time. Perhaps my feeling are due to the fact that I am an archaeologist and this site, like Petra, Jordan where I have spent a lot of time, is a marvelous site.    

 
Note the huge block construction
Temple of the Sun above and below



Temple of the Sun with its fine stonework, altar, and trapezoidal windows
Now we are near the Temple of the Three Windows
 
Temple of the Three Windows with huge trapezoidal windows and 3-ton lintel stones. The temple was roofed with huge stones going from where the students are sitting to the pillar on the left side.
View of the center of the temple
 
The other side of the temple which again shows that it had been roofed.
A worker is using a trowel to scrape off growth. Note how the stonework and hols the two side walls lean in to aid in placing a roof
Now we are below the Temple of the Three Windows. Note the stonework and the people for perspective.
One of Machu Picchu’s recent directors believes that they have located eight access points leading to and from this site, which led him to conclude that Machu Picchu was part of a trade nexus linking the Andes to the Amazon basin.    
The Spirit Guardians of Machu Picchu

            In reference to the painting of Machu Picchu with the puma (earth), the condor (sky), and the snake (underworld), the Inca needed to live in harmony with nature and needed to appease the spirit guardians periodically with offerings. The spirits would reciprocate. 
            Waynapicchu represented a puma that was crouched to attack with its hackles up. The terraces near the peak shown in the previous post represented its raised hackles. To the left of Waynapicchu is another peak with three prominences (pic below). This one represents the condor, its head in the middle and on either side are its half-opened wings. 
Left of Wayna Picchu is the condor
Left of Wayna Picchu is the Condor and the residential sector is part of the lizard mentioned below.
Google Earth showing the "lizard" to the right of the green area.
Google Earth highlighting the "lizard"

              The residential and industrial sectors to the right and the entire length of the plateau leading to Wayna Picchu is said to resemble a giant lizard that emerged from the river below to this location. Other symbolism is mentioned but I do not see it in my pictures. There were too many tourists while we were there that afternoon to appreciate its possible magical atmosphere and we were not there long enough for solitary reverie. 

            Machu Picchu (Old Bird) fortunately missed the destructive efforts of the Spanish conquistadors. It’s too bad that the Old Bird, the guardian spirit of peace could not return to help revive the spirit of paz/shalom/salaam in us. With the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors, there was no “paz” in this region in the 16th century, and there are too many places in the world today where there is a lack of shalom/salaam and instead in too many places there is insecurity. Maranatha.     

A major source I used for the blogs on the Sacred Valley is entitled Cusco and the Sacred Valley of the Incas by Fernando E Elorrieta Salazar and Edgar Elorrieta Salazar. I bought the 2013 edition. I had noticed that many of the guides, including Jesus, were carrying this book, so I asked him where I could purchase it. I used some smaller guide books, and we always carry and use the Lonely Planet. Two older sources were Time-Life’s 1992 book entitled Incas: Lords of Gold and Glory, and another 1992 book entitled The Incas and Their Ancestry by Michael E. Moseley, a Thames and Hudson book. 
 This is my final blog on Peru about my 4-month visit to Peru in 2013. My focus was on its archaeology, and I plan (Ojala) to return to this theme I my planned return in July 2014. 

Paz, Neal Bierling

Neal Bierling, Archaeological Adventures: Getting High in Peru: Machu Picchu Arrival and Cli...

Neal Bierling, Archaeological Adventures: Getting High in Peru: Machu Picchu Arrival and Cli...: Getting High in Peru: Machu Picchu and the Climb to Wayna Picchu. You need a separate ticket to climb this peak   Googl...