I like to go into sacred places blind. That way there won’t be any preconceived notions coloring my experience. I want to know that what I am experiencing is a result of what is there, not some expectation. Even without knowing anything about The City of the Spirits, it’s easy to tell that this place is special. It looks like nothing else in the area.
The dark red stones are huge and oddly shaped. It’s like they were dropped out of the sky and placed in the flat, green farmland. The first time we drove by, I took pictures and thought, “I wonder what is going on here?” Our guide later told us that this land used to be underwater. It was pushed up from the lake floor millions of years ago.
Not only does it look different. It feels different. I first noticed it when we were walking across the “puma’s back” (a ridge of stones). It wasn’t particularly high, uneven, or narrow, but I couldn’t walk there. I had to walk on the flat ground. The rise was too unsettling.
I couldn’t wrap my head around that. I’ve never been afraid of heights and had walked in far more dangerous places than that without the slightest concern. I chalked it up to being woozy from the altitude, but wasn’t really convinced.
We got to another area (the snake) where we did a short meditation. We put our right hand over our heart and thought “with love” and left hand over our abdomen and thought “without fear.” I could feel energy churning inside of me with the bubbling of something that wanted to be expressed. Then same thing happened again. I felt as if I were caught in a spiral of energy that threatened to unbalance me. My equilibrium was totally blown. I couldn’t stand there and let whatever was happening just happen.
We climbed to another spot, the condor stone, where the guide shared some local lore. Apparently despite the fact that some locals don’t like to come here, there is an annual ritual that takes place involving water that comes up through a hole in the rocks. You know when locals are frightened by the strange goings on, there is something to the legends.
We climbed down and popped out right in front of the famous Aramu Muru doorway. This name was only given to it recently. Other local names are Wilka Uta (House of Divinity) and Altarani (place with the altar). The Spanish called it “The Devil’s Doorway” to keep people from visiting here.
The place has a legendary history. The story goes, once upon a time there was a land called Lemuria. Lemuria had a highly evolved spiritual society that was first threatened when they were conquered by the materialistic Atlanteans. Both eventually sank into the ocean, but not before their sacred secrets were given to seven Brothers for safe keeping. Each took off to different places on the globe with their secrets.
The cyclops Aramu Muru, brought the powerful golden Sun Disc to the Incas (or perhaps pre-Incas) to use in the Temple of the Sun in Cusco, Peru. The local priests used it to communicate directly to the Sun God and Universal Mind… until the conquistadors came.
At that time, Aramu Muru hid the Sun Disc beneath the waters of Lake Titicaca and disappeared through the doorway at the place now called Aramu Muru or also “The Temple of Illumination.”
Some people say that they have had visions here. Others say they have glimpsed the other side of the portal. Some hear mysterious music. I am kinesthetic. Before I even reached the channels on the side to prepare myself for kneeling in the central doorway, I was queasy and trembling. When I put my third eye to the hollow in the door that others say gives them visions, I felt a surge of power.
Oh! Now I understood what I felt before. It was power. I felt as if something was about to happen. It felt like the space before something bursts open. Unfortunately, I couldn’t sustain the energy long enough to get there. I had to break from it. It was too intense. That’s when I knew I had to come back to Peru. It all hinged on that moment. That moment felt so unfinished.
It took me a while to be able to get grounded, speak, and just be normal again. When we did, my group and I went to the backside of the doorway and crawled around a cave. Then we had our lunch in the serenity that is the City of the Spirits as the “faces” and animals carved in the stone kept silent watch over us on this peaceful afternoon.
Everything on my Peru tour was enjoyable; however, up until this point, I didn’t know if I would ever return. Being here in this power, I felt I experienced a taste of what I came for. And I wanted more.
For the first time in Peru, the idea of Pachacuti – the time of awakening – resonated with me. I could feel that promise in the energy here.