The Olmec civilisation, 1200-400 BC
Many of the written records left by the Olmec in South America were systematically destroyed by the European “discoverers” of the New World. The very people who burnt down the libraries of the African Moors in Spain were the same people who destroyed the written records of the Olmec civilisation. Olmec is derived from the Aztec root, Ollin, meaning rubber, loosely translated as people from the land where rubber is produced. La Venta in Mexico was the capital of the Olmec civilisation.
Diago deLaanda, the Spanish bishop of Yucatan, admitted in his writings: “These people made use of certain characters or letters with which they wrote their books and ancient matter and their science … We found a large number of books. They contained but superstition. We burned them all which they regretted to an amazing degree, and which caused them much affliction.”
Antonio deCuidad Real, the Spanish historian, also affirmed in 1588 AD that the Spanish “burned many historical books of the ancient Yucatan which told of its beginning and history.”
The earliest settlers in Central America date from 3000-2000 BC, but the major civilisation that preceded them all was the Olmec, which influenced all the American civilisations, including the Aztec, the Mayans, and the Incas.
The Olmec civilisation (1200-400 BC) was all-pervasive, reaching Guatemala and Honduras to the west, to Central Mexico, Costa Rica and along the ancient American coast as far as Panama. Specifically, it was at La Venta in Mexico that the Olmec lay the foundations of ancient America, marked by pyramid complexes and hieroglyphic writing, a trait which was later to be assimilated by other civilisations in the Americas, including the Maya.
The sheer size of the Colossal Head and other finds, is a clear indication that Africans occupied elite positions in the ancient American civilisations. As the late Dr Ivan Van Sertima put it in his seminal work, African Presence in Early America: “If we examine some of those helmets [on the Colossal Heads], we will find they are uncannily similar to the leather helmet worn by the Nubian-Kemet military in the era of Ramese and in the first millennium BC. They completely cover the head and the back of the neck, and they have tie-ons attached to the crest and falling in front of the ear. The details on some of them, almost 3,000 years old, have circular earplugs and incised decoration, paralleled lines found on other colossal Nubian heads in the Egyptian seaport of Tanis.”
The African Ankh symbol of life is identical with the Olmec sacred cross both in function and name. The Olmec called it the “tree of life”. The Kemetic spiritual, ceremonial and sacred colours are identical with that of the Olmec who also used oxide dyes to evoke blackness, a colour they used mostly to paint their sculptures. Also, the pyramids in Mexico are identical in orientation to that of Kemet. And, too, the nine gods of Kemet mentioned in the Book of Creation are equally found in the Americas and recorded in the pyramids of Mexico as the “nine lords of the night”.
Said Dr Ivan Van Sertima: “It is important to understand what a great burden of proof is required to establish a cultural influence, even when there is a sound case for a physical presence and contact. Any one of the above traits, standing by itself as a single parallel can be dismissed as coincidence. When such traits appear as an interconnected cluster, performing a single function and
duplication nowhere else in the world except where the Egyptian travelled or left their influence, then only a dogmatic conservative or a bigot can deny the possibility of both physical contact and cultural influence.”
Thus, modern-day Mexicans who are discriminating against African-descended Mexicans on account of their colour and race, need to take a step back and look at the real history of the place they now call their country. They will find that the African ancestors had had a huge impact on the country thousands of years before the Spanish colonialists arrived and turned the place upside down.