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  Columnist: L.M. Leteane

Image credit: CC 2.5 futons_of_rock

Mystery of the Olmecs

Posted on Wednesday, 23 January, 2013 | 11 comments
Columnist: L.M. Leteane

For those blissfully unaware of a genre called non-fiction 'alternative history' the Olmecs of South America will remain an often-uncomfortable but enduring mystery. Although archeologists and historians regard their ethnicity as 'unknown', these unmistakably African people left an indelible mark in the ancient cultures of Meso- and South America - and their civilization is now firmly accepted as having greatly influenced the later cultures of Aztecs, Mayans, Inca and other Amerindian peoples.

What, possibly, could a bunch of Africans be doing there so early in history (even the most conservative of conventional estimates their first presence in the Americas as being from as early as circa 1500 BC)? How did they cross the considerable distance of the Atlantic Ocean, only widely reckoned to have been first traversed, reliably speaking, by Christopher Columbus in AD 1492? Why did they suddenly disappear? Of course, more recent evidence suggests that the fearless Vikings of Scandinavia may have reached North America before Columbus, but no conventional historian had ever factored in Africans nations or groups. Well... that is not exactly true.

Although not historians, two women scientists - independently and almost fifteen years apart - found exactly such evidence. They had been roped in to assist in examining Egyptian mummies for the benefit of history, only for their findings to each meet an unexpectedly hostile reception from 'mainstream' historians. Yet science, by and large, does not lie - or so we are told. In what I call 'The Case of the Cocaine Mummies', it began with Dr Michelle Lescot of the Natural History Museum. She was one of the scientists asked to repair the rapidly deteriorating mummified body of Ramses II, an Egyptian pharaoh who died in 1213 BC (conventional date), which was brought to Paris for an exhibition in September of 1976. Using a powerful electron microscope, she was duly examining pieces of bandage on the mummy and just happened to find traces of tobacco not only on the bandages (at first dismissed as most likely caused by a modern, pipe-smoking scientist) but deep inside the mummy.

One serious issue arose for Egyptologists and conventional historians. Tobacco is indigenous to South America and it is deemed to have been brought to Europe only after the time of Columbus! However, instead of the expected scholarly excitement over this new revelation, she was greeted by extreme hostility from her peers. Her peers argued that the plant must have been from another plant like henbane, a distant member of the tobacco family. Although she knew what she saw, Dr Lescot opted to gracefully ride the storm and did not pursue the matter further.

Not so Dr Svetlana Balabanova, a leading forensic scientist of the Institute of Forensic Medicine in Ulm, fifteen years later, in 1992. She stuck to her guns, only for her to be first ridiculed, then insulted in many letters, then isolated, by conventional historians. Some facts are evidently ''too hot'' for conventional historians to handle, and many such enigmas are outlined in my book They Came From the Sky. What made her findings even more controversial was that not only did she find evidence of nicotine... but also cocaine! This was even more problematic for 'historians' because cocaine is native to the Andes mountain range area which is on the western coast of South America! The problem was the logical conclusion that ancient Egyptians must have traversed the Atlantic to at least the east coast of South America... and most likely into even the western coast...

Non-fiction 'alternative' historians, however, are not bound by 'convention'. To maintain 'credibility', they are not obliged to sing, as it were, from a stipulated, 'official' hymn book. As such, they can - and do - consider a much wider spectrum of evidence. Some have placed the arrival of the Olmecs to as early as 3000 BC and before, which snugly fits in with the timeline we had established in my Nimrod article. In Nimrod, we saw that they were a contingent of engineers that left Egypt with Thoth, the Egyptian Wisdom-God and Divine Measurer around 3110 BC. In South America, a new calendar (the famous Mayan Calendar) was started to commemorate a major event in 3113 BC, one that Thoth had pleasure in recalling. In South America, Thoth (Sumerian: Ningishzidda; Greek: Hermes) became known as "Quetzalcoatl"... now deemed to mean 'Feathered Serpent'. Though a valid interpretation, it is not wholly true.

Let us prepare to examine what the Olmecs really meant by that epithet. Of course, one factor that links 'Thoth' with 'Quetzalcoatl' is his clan's symbol - now the universal symbol of medicine and healing. It incorporates both snakes and feathers, and it was seen far and wide - suggesting that these were not notional beings of myth, but real flesh-and-blood beings of proper history. In my book They Came From the Sky, I uncovered the ancient African name for Egypt to be 'Khmer-Roggo', which I showed to mean 'the Black-and Red Land'; the 'black' (Khemet: khemeta in Sotho-Tswana, meaning 'rich, or in abundance') referring to the rich, black soil deposited annually by the Nile in its delta; and the 'red' (Roggo) referring to the reddish barren soil of Egypt's desert. Accordingly, the Cambodian name 'Khmer-Rouge' becomes very interesting indeed... By way of confirmation, Charles Berlitz notes, in his 1976 book The Mystery of Atlantis, that Quetzalcoatl was said to have come from a 'Black-and-Red-Land'. Incidentally, this was the color favored by the Aztecs... and also the Masai (we briefly discuss them below).

Khwetsa in Sotho-Tswana [1] means 'drive' or 'steer'; a le means 'while [he] is', khoatle is an iguana-like reptile noted, like all cold-blooded creatures, for lying lazily in the sun for hours on end (kgoata, in fact, means 'lie flat [on one's stomach]'). What does this all mean? Thoth would lie 'lazily' in the sun while commandeering his corps of engineers - always depicted with helmets on. With them, he was kick-starting or reviving a civilization, as Amerindian legends confirm. They all credit him with writing, architecture, agriculture, and all vestiges of civilization There is a reptilian connection between snake and iguana, of course, but 'Feathered Serpent' or 'Winged Serpent is not a direct translation of 'Quetzalcoatl'... and even the so-called 'quetzal bird' gets its name by inference.

'Quetzalcoatl' is an Aztec name. The Mayans called him "Kukulkan". In Sotho-Tswana, kuk (koko) is now 'chicken': a domesticated bird; kul (now kholo) means 'great' - the root of 'cool', which term was brought to the US by African slaves - and kan is of the same root as Khan, or cahuna, meaning 'great man', but its origins indeed lie in the widespread term for 'snake' - whose twisting motion reflects the ways of cunning or wisdom - hence nagash (wise) in Hebrew is literally 'snake-like'. Noga in Sotho-Tswana is 'snake', while nagana is 'to contemplate or reckon'. The integrated meaning of this epithet is now quite clear.

Although there are many other South American terms that resonate in Sotho-Tswana, let us concentrate firstly on the terms 'Maya' and 'Olmec'. After that, we will home in a few other well-known names in the region. In Sotho-Tswana, 'o' means 'he' (or 'she') and lomeha, or lomega, means 'put together'. This is a very cohesive, illuminating and suitable name for people who are always depicted with helmets on! They are said to have worked in the mine shafts and constructed many of the magnificent ancient buildings. But they also took time to carve out huge helmeted heads, ensuring that their legacy there is recognized. The Nahuatl (indigenous Mexican) take on the name 'Olmec' - which, they say, means "rubber lineage" - is, in light of all this, quite evidently not correctly parsed. Ma-ya in Sotho-Tswana means 'those who went' and the direct opposite of this is... Masai (Ma-sa-ye)! Although admittedly more speculative, one needs only compare the dress and the distinctive, ramrod-straight, up-and-down dance motion of the Mayans in Apocalypto (a Mel Gibson directed movie) as they paid homage to Kukulkan, with that of the Masai of East Africa...

An interesting name of a major god in Quetzalcoatl's time is Tlahuizcalpantechuhtli. In Tswana, this is: Tla (come) ho-itse (to know) ka (of) le-pan (Earth) tse-chotle ([in its] entirety). This was exactly how Quetzalcoatl is also described: the name Te-huti (Thoth) is of the same roots as mo-huti (teacher) in Sotho-Tswana! The h is guttural; like the Spanish j or French r. 'Viracoche' transliterates to Dira-chotle (Maker (or Doer) of All) in Sotho-Tswana - exactly as in the Inca tradition. The Quechua, the name of an Inca tribe, is also very interesting. 'Khwetsoa' means 'to be driven' (exactly as in Quetzalcoatl). Were their ancestors also 'driven' by this god to work? Could Vira-quechua also mean 'those driven to work' (dira also means 'work')?

By far the most revealing terms are 'Nazca' and 'Tezcatilpoca Huitzilpochtli'. As a few alternative history scholars have determined, this referred to the Sumerian god Ishkur, otherwise known as 'Teshub' or 'Hadad'. His distinctive personal insignia was the trident, a sort of pitch-fork shaped weapon from which 'lightning' ensued. The sparks (or static electricity) generated between its 'prongs' can, of course, be easily duplicated in modern times, and it should not be viewed as a weapon of fantasy. How he became an arch-enemy of Thoth-Quetzalcoatl is a complex, integrated story best unbundled in my book They Came From the Sky. It involves many a paradigm shift, one of which is the complete deciphering of the highly-veiled, completely-misunderstood 'Legend of the Minotaur' of Minoa; one of the deepest secrets of the 'gods' and never before unbundled in print.

Ishkur's presence in South America was to assert his new-found authority within the Pantheon, the Council of gods that ruled Earth. One of the ways to do this was to take to the sky and carve his insignia onto the land below, with a laser. Indeed, 'Nazca' - where this and other images are to be found in South America, all designed to be properly appreciated only from high up in the air - derives from Na-sicca ('as if cut'; sega in Sotho-Tswana means 'cut', and it is of the same root as 'scissors''). He was thus called 'Lord of the Smoking Self-Image' (meaning his insignia, the trident) - not 'Mirror' as many experts translate. The 'smoking' referred to both the effect of the laser as it cut out an image of his trident into the ground, and the fact that his real trident also 'smoked' when activated.

One can envisage the Olmecs sigh: te-scati (it is time) ti-ipoca (to praise oneself) every time his plane took off. Ho-itse-iphotli (or ipochi): 'to be prone to or skilled in vanity (self-image)' – that's how they regarded the highly emotional Weeping God who came to show who was now in charge in South America. His trident was indeed a sign of new times to come - the precursor of an all-out War of the Gods in South America that soon left the Olmecs stranded in the Polynesian island of Easter. There, their urgent SOS to the gods can still be translated and understood through Sotho-Tswana.

[1] Sotho-Tswana is a Bantu language of southern Africa which, I show in my books and many articles, to relate strongly to a proto-language once spoken in Egypt, Sumer and even India. Why an understandable version of it is spoken in South America is evidently to be found in the legend of Thoth's migration there with his Olmecs.

Article Copyright© L.M. Leteane - reproduced with permission.

L.M. Leteane is a self-published author and independent researcher residing in Gaborone, Botswana.

His e-books, including They Came From the Sky (288 pages, US$12.50), are available at his website

  Other articles by L.M. Leteane

Easter Island heads... they speak at last
Columnist: L.M. Leteane | Posted on 2-4-2013 | 5 comments
Most non-fiction 'alternative history' authors and researchers confirm that South American legend speaks of a major 'War of the Gods' that took place there. Thi...

Quetzalcoatl - when will he return?
Columnist: L.M. Leteane | Posted on 12-30-2012 | 3 comments
“The Mayan Prophecy, can only be understood through Quetzalcoatl, their beloved god who started off their Calendar”, says author L.M. LETEANE. The following is ...

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