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A Brief Review of Pyramids Around The World

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Pyramids have been a great fascination since time immemorial. The reason being, their construction is impeccable – at a time, when there were no machines to aid with precision. Why, even the tools used by humans had not been developed to any great extent – and yet, the pyramids have stood the test of time, tall and proud, and not to mention – smooth, as though made by using laser technology. However, while all of us are well-versed on the topic of the Pyramids of Giza (they were on the original list of World Wonders after all!), how many of us are even aware of the fact that pyramids are not indigenous to Egypt?

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In fact, the largest pyramid by volume is not in Egypt – it is the Great Pyramid of Cholula in Puebla, Mexico. Pyramids have been seen in many other parts of the world as well – and even out side of our planet, a topic which we will explore in the forthcoming paragraphs. Several question then arise – what is it about this three-dimensional geometric figure that was so attractive / extraordinary to our ancestors? Did this structure signify something specific in the ancient world, considering that it is found in so many parts of our planet? Did the existence of pyramids in one place influence the construction of others? Did the ancient peoples really build the pyramids or were they built by extra-terrestrials like one popular theory suggests? All these and more questions remain to be answered.

There have been pyramids even older than the ones constructed in Egypt. What is most shocking is that, pyramids have not only been used as tombs in Egypt, they have been used as such in many parts of the world. Another common use of this structure has been for temples. Pyramids have been found in Mexico (as Meso-american structures), Indonesia and Italy, to name a few places. Many of these pyramids have also been closely related to Hind structures – in Cambodia, there is a partially dilapidated pyramid, which was once a temple dedicated to the Hindu God, Lord Shiva. On top of this pyramid, there was speculated to be a massive Shiva Lingam, which is believed to have been one of the most beautiful Shiva Lingams. This pyramid is located in what was the old North capital of Khmer Dynasty. Although some of these pyramids do not have a pointed tip like the ones we are accustomed to imagining on hearing of pyramids, this minor change in form and material s a direct reflection of the lifestyle available to each of these civilisations at the time of the construction of these pyramids. One may be surprised to know that pyramids have even been built of clay mud with grass having grown all over them to form a mound – such as the one at present day Illinois.

There are several structures lying in plain sight which are pyramidal and just as ancient, but have not been given the same status and adulation because they were not built the way they are to solely serve as pyramids. For example, many Hindu temples in India have what is known in Tamil as the “gopuram”, which form a “crown” of sorts atop the temple complex. They are only a part if the temple, however, in many customs, the “gopuram” is given a special status, wherein, worshipping the “gopuram” is believed to give one much spiritual benefit. There is a saying in Tamil which says: “Gopura Darisanam, Kodi Punyam” – which translates to, one who has worshipped the gopuram will amass great good karma. Hence, once again, the pyramidal structure has been given a spiritual status – much like the other pyramids we had mentioned previously in this work.

Mount Kailash, which has popularly been considered as Maha Meru (which, in Hinduism and certain other religions has been considered to be the physical, spiritual and metaphysical centre of the universe) has been speculated to be a manmade pyramid. There is speculation that the snow cover has acted as a natural raiment. There have even been conspiracy theories that Mt. Kailash is a manmade Russian observatory – however, this claim seems farfetched. Mt. Kailash, despite being a whole two thousand metres shorter than Mt. Everest, has never been conquered. Several people shied away from making an attempt as they were afraid of hurting religious sentiments. There were others, who sought to climb the mountain but had to retreat due to natural interventions such as heavy snowfall.

Famed mountaineer Reinhold Messner was made an offer to scale Mt. Kailash but he refused out of respect for the Hindu, Jain and Buddhist religions. Mt. Kailash, regarded as Lord Shiva’s abode in Hinduism, has always been a divine site of pilgrimage for these three religions. In fact, many mountains have religious significance. In particular, mountains have popularly been locations for building temples – much like pyramids. For instance, in the Mahabharata, the Pandavas, Draupadi and their dog climb the mountain Swargarohini to attain moksha. Taking these concepts and ideas into consideration, one is moved to wonder – if in fact, mountains have always held significant religious importance in most of the religions, including those of the past and if the pyramids are a reproduction of the mountains that held and continue to hold such significance.

While it is surprising enough that there are oyramids outside of Egypt, what is more intriguing is that, there are pyramids on other planets as well. The Cydonia region in Mars has been a very interesting tract of land for both explorers and conspiracists alike. Apart from having a humanoid projection on its surface, which looks a mask has been dropped on the Martian ground, the region also has a bump which is shaped like a pyramid – although it isn’t exactly one. NASA scientists are of the opinion that it is a natural formation, formed by soil erosion, this pyramid like structure, called the D&M Pyramid has been acted as a trigger for all those who look for exciting explanations out of the mundane and the ordinary. This is not surprising, since there is already a popular conspiracy theory in place which states that the pyramids at Giza were built by aliens, as stated in the beginning of this section.

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To summarize, pyramids have not only stood the test of time as a symbol of spirituality, but also been widely popular as final resting places around the world. What is it about this structure that drew people to it, and that too, for these specific reasons? Was the reason simply one of convenience? Was the pyramid somehow easier to give shape to using different materials while lending maximum internal utility to such a building? Or was the reason more esoteric? Did the equivalents of the idea of the Mt. Meru exist popularly in the ancient religions all over the world? This would explain the spirituality surrounding these structures. Even if such ideas existed, how is it that disparate civilisations, existing sometimes not just separated spatially but also chronologically, came to have similar views and thoughts? Questions such as the latter lead us to much broader questions, beyond the scope of these ancient structures.

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A Brief Review of Pyramids Around the World. (2022, May 24). GradesFixer. Retrieved June 6, 2023, from
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