Archaeologists have unearthed a temple, believed to be more than 5000 years old at the famous El Paraiso site, located near Lima, the capital city of Peru.
On the western edge of the Paraiso Complex is a temple which is described as :
“A small stone structure which features walls coated in yellow clay and traces of red paint, is thought to be around 5,000 years old and has already been dubbed the Temple of Fire. It was discovered within the western wing of the main El Paraiso pyramid. The hearth located in the newly discovered structure was used to burn ceremonial offerings.”
Marco Guillen, who led the team of researchers interpreted his findings and said, “The smoke allowed the priests to connect with the gods.”
This concept is very much similar to the Vedic rituals done in Havan Kund (Yajna, where people light up fire in a square shaped cube structure built with bricks and make offerings while chantings mantras, mostly to please a god/goddess and achieve a certain objective)
This is also called as Agnihotra or Homa.
The Paraiso Fire Temple is a larger version of a ‘Havan Kund‘, with seating space for the pundits (priests) chanting mantras.
Archeologists say the site is comparable in age to Caral, the oldest pre-Columbian site in the Americas that was inhabited between 2,600 – 2,100 BC. Caral is located some 200 kilometers (125 miles) to the north and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The entrance, measuring some 48 centimeters (19-inches) wide, leads to a chamber measuring eight by six meters (26 by 20 feet) where shellfish, grains, flowers and fruit were burned as offerings.
The temple has four levels, with each one older than the other.
Vedic sacred fire ritual ‘havan‘ serves as a link between man’s consciousness and the cosmic consciousness.
Havan fire converts the physical components and all offerings made to the fire, into their ‘psychic’ components serving as homage to the deities presiding over the ‘havan‘.
The ‘offerings’ made into the fire is known as ‘homa‘ (होम) in Sanskrit.
Probably from the Sanskrit ‘homa‘ that the English word ‘homage‘ is derived – though English etymological dictionaries trace the source to the word ‘homme‘ meaning ‘man‘.
Agni (Fire) is the first word in Rig Veda (which is the oldest text available).
Almost all religions use light/fire to worship higher force or God. It can be in the form of agnihotra, lamps or candles.
Burning incense sticks is also practiced in many religions and for meditations purposes.
In Sanskrit, Peru (पेरु) means ‘Golden Mountain’ and ‘Paru‘ (परु) means ‘Paradise‘.
Paraiso could have its roots in sanskrit, just like the ancient language of the Americas, Quechua, which has similarities to sanskrit.
Just like the fire ritual in native american weddings and QoriKancha temple, which has ‘Kancha‘ (कञ्च) word, which clearly means Gold in sanskrit and in Quechua language, QoriKancha (Korikancha) means ‘Courtyard of Gold‘.