Discovered: The Lost Mountain Gods of Colombia
Peña de Juaica - Penis of Juaica - (pronounced: why-ka) is a remote and legendary mountain situated between the municipalities of Tabio and Tenjo at an altitude of 3,100 meters (10,170ft) above sea level. This dominant phallic sentinel which once guarded the rich agricultural territories of the pre-Colombian Muisca people who inhabited this territory. Known locally as La Puerto de Los Dioses - the Gateway of the Gods - this story recounts my recent discovery of the ancient gate-keepers.
The Mystery of Juiaca
Juaica has been associated with mysterious lighting phenomena for many centuries and thousands of spiritual tourists travel here every year to bask in the perceived ‘energy’ of this ancient landscape. To some, the mountain is a portal to other dimensions and hundreds of reports every year describe mysterious floating lights, unidentified flying objects and blue and red balls of light are seen entering and leaving its pointed summit.
The magical rock of Juiaca, situated between the municipalities of Tabio and Tenjo, Colombia.
Even the most rational local sceptics do not deny the existence of these unusual phenomena and they struggle to explain the origins of these weird lights and what appear to be flying objects. Over the last year, I actively set out to understand the cause and origins of the extraordinary light shows, flying-disks and whizzing balls of energy. Having spent almost a year living less than two kilometers from the mountain I have heard or read pretty much everything that has been said of the place. Talking about Juaica, César Eduardo Bernal Quintero, a journalist for the National Broadcasting of Colombia, insisted the problem of 'the lights of mount Juaica' should be approached from two rational perspectives; scientific and historical/anthropological before the paranormal. He then suggested, however, that the lights may be 'reflections from the gold' that is said to have been buried in that mountain by the Muisca Indians explaining why guaquerías (grave robbers) have been so successful at this site for several centuries. Buried gold does ‘not’ cause flying disks and airborne light shows, so far as scientists have observed.
System engineer William Chaves Ariza is director of UFO Contact in Colombia, a popular organization disseminating information on UFO sightings across the country. In his book Juaica, The Door of the Gods, he claimed to see lights forming a ‘disc or dish’ circulating in the sky above the mountain. Local psychologist Juan Sebastián Castañeda Soto has lived in Tabio for more than 15 years and witnessed 'a blue light moving quickly and hiding in the mountain' about which he said: “it could have been the reflection of an airplane, a comet, a shooting star or a meteorite”, but concluded that it was most probably a UFO.
This photograph seized front page headlines in Colombia last year
In a culture where leading members of the academic community, including the local head doctor, believe in UFOs, it is of no surprise the village folk and farmers 'see' UFOs regularly, as their society leaders permit them to do so.
Also on the fringes, many maintain that the mountain ‘must’ hold some sort of ‘superior technology’ capable of warping space and time. How else does one explain the countless annual reports of people setting off down the east face of the mountain and arriving at the west, lost, two to three hours from the main road? And if you ask any one of these people, they are all super-pro, and reject any suggestion that fog and bad mountaineering played any part in the hyper-drive experience.
The most esoteric and mystically-minded local writers account for the whizzing lights by referencing Spanish records at the time of colonization in 1537 which talk of 'mass suicides' of indigenous people who jumped off the top of Juaica before being subjected to Spanish rule. It is held that these suicide events contribute towards the ‘energy load’ displayed by the rock of Juaica. The trouble in accepting that the lights at Juaica are caused by UFOs, time-travelling technology or the energy of dead people, is that these ideas require a greater leap of faith than those undertaken by the poor Muisca people who jumped of the rock to avoid the apparently insane Spanish world-view where one god displaced many.
Not being prepared to take such a leap of faith, I turned to hard science for answers and approached the nation’s leading geological authority in an attempt to catch a fish of reason in a poisoned ocean of pseudo-science blended with blinding colorful Andean imagination. To help solve this ‘environmental’ mystery, on New Year’s Eve December 2016, I interviewed Professor Eufrasio Bernal, President of the Geographical Society of Colombia and a leading authority on the pre-Colombian (Spanish) Muisca civilization.