Sri Lankan, ‘Stargate’

Neo-colonial oppression or alien portal?

Adam Hennessy
7 min readJan 26, 2022

Let’s take a look at the Sri Lankan, ‘Stargate’. There have been some ‘mainstream’ archaeologists and anthropologists who maintain that this title is a neo-colonial designation that minimises the culture and achievements of the Sri Lankan population.

To this I say not here!

I will use it and discuss it as that is what is interesting about the site, the speculation, the conspiracy theories. We will delve into it in such away that gives a, hopefully, holistic view of the site while acknowledging and discussing its ‘stargate’ moniker.

What is it?

We are talking about what is known as the Sakwala Chakraya (Sinhalese for “Universe Cycle”). It is a large circular petroglyph 6 feet in diameter. Carved into the rock face, with a slight overhang, so arguable the ‘roof’ of a shallow cave. The ancient (we will get to dating) and intricate petroglyph contains several, ‘cup and ring’ style designs many of which are quadrisected by cross lines Ꚛ

Credit: Sahan Perera

Around the outside of the circle are a collection of animals which, for the most part, appear to transverse the circumference clockwise.

The center concentric circles are bound within a square around 1 x 1 feet. Horizontal and vertical lines wind their way from this central square in a somewhat uniform pattern. There is certainly uniformity on the outside of the circle and less so as we move closer to the center, there still however is a somewhat, I think, unsettling order to the shape. The drawing of the petroglyph gives better insight into its layout.

Where is it?

It is located in the city of Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka. Anuradhapura is a capital city of the North Central Province and the capital of Anuradhapura District. It was also an ancient capital city and known today for its ruins.


The petroglyph sits within Ranmasu Uyana park in the Royal Gardens and is close to the Tissa Wewa reservoir which were said to have been constructed sometime in the 3rd Century BCE. Interestingly Ranmasu means Goldfish and the Stargate has fish encircling the geometric design.

One may surmise they carved what they saw?

How old is it?

We know that much of the area was constructed during the reign of King Tissa, in the 3rd Century BCE. We also know that there were several buildings added to the grounds (all 40 acres of them) in the 8th-9th Century AD. However, there is a contention that the petroglyph in question is much older.

Current consensus tells us that the carvings do not match any at the time of the Anuradhapura kingdom (400BCE-1000AD). There are existing carvings from the time which do not depict such a striking geometric pattern, those which exists are generally religious in nature depicting vines, swans and lotus, the Stargate is devoid of this Bhuddhist iconography.

I could not find any scientific dating that has been undertaken on or at the site, somewhat understandably as rock is notoriously, if not impossible, to accurately date and this is carved so there is not material to scrape and analyse. What I can offer is some online and pseudo-scientific contention that the site potentially in excess of 5000 years old, placing it chronologically in line with early Kingdome Egypt and the Great pyramid.

What is it?

This is the question that holds the most contention.

The fact is that nobody knows.

Cosmological chart

H C P Bell, a British civil servant appointed as the first Commissioner of Archaeology of Ceylon (Sri Lanka’s former name) was the first person to conduct an analysis from which we have records. I am sure many people had surmised, guessed, analysed and pondered prior to 1911, but this is the earliest written report we have. Bell contended it was an ‘… ancient ‘map of the world’, perhaps the oldest in existence…’ This requires a little more investigation. Bell was not saying this was a cartography petroglyph rather a cosmological chart — a map of the universe as interpreted at the time.[1]

Map of a stupa (a dome-shaped building erected as a Buddhist shrine)

There is a theory that the Stargate is a map for the construction of a stupa (possibly Sigiriya)

Credit: Dmitry Malov/Getty Images

Looking at the image one could content the concentric circles matches the pond in the center, with the horizontal and vertical lines extending outward to create the fortified division. This theory is credited to Shereen Almendra, a senior lecturer of landscape design at the University of Moratuwa.

World map

Raj Somadeva and archaeologist from Kelaniya University believes Bell’s initial wording may be accurate and that the Stargate is a world map, or at least the world that they knew in around 250BCE. A world map based on religious context not cosmological. I take issue with this as there are no known religious images within the petroglyph that match the same period of history.


The petroglyph is a functioning (at the time) Stargate used for the transportation of alien beings from one world to another. Needless to say, this theory has not received widespread support in the scientific or historical communities.

I will say there are some interesting arguments here.

It is located close to the Danigala mountain (Kandegama rock or Alien mountain) so labelled because of the flat top and odd circular growth of the brush, which led theorists to pronounce the mountain a launching pad for alien craft. I am a little confused here. If aliens had use of a Stargate for teleportation … why would they need a landing pad for a physical vehicle?

A more solid argument, and I use the term solid loosely, is seen with a comparison with other ‘so called’ Stargates around the world, particularly in Egypt (Abu Ghurab) and Peru (La Puerta de Hayu Marca).

We can see in the Egyptian example above, I believe, a clear visual correlation. A circle inset into a square in the center of a larger object that has horizontal and vertical lines creating geometric patterns. If taken as a whole including the stones the sub-structure sits on I think one can make an argument for at least a similarity.

However, I see no correlation to the Peruvian example below. The shape is different, there is no circular correlation and no other geometric pattern. It is unusual, a doorway to nowhere, but nonetheless no relationship to our Sri Lankan Stargate.


We can look at the Cochno Stone a 5000-year-old stone slab (43 feet by 26 feet) from Glasgow, Scotland.

University of Glasgow

The Aberlemno stone (Scotland)


The Badger stone from Yorkshire (England)

Ashley Cooper/Alamy

Knowth’s kerb stones in Ireland

Mutitjulu Cave, Northern Territory (Australia), thought to be around 30,000 years old

Grenville Turner

Walinynga (Cave Hill) South Australia believed to be 43,000 years old.

June Ross

Three Rivers Petroglyph Site New Mexico

Bornholm, Denmark the earliest known cup markings in Scandanavia.

Melissa Cherry Villumsen

These all somewhat match the designs on the Stargate. Not as uniform in their totality, not as singularly focuses, but even by the most outlandish estimation for the age of the Stargate, far older than those in Sri Lanka.

What does this mean?

I believe that the Sri Lankan Stargate was a cosmological tool/map created by the ancients of the time. More probably than not in the 3rd Century BCE. The discovery of cut out seating facing the Stargate is telling.

Credit: Sahan Perera

I contend that these seats would be used while an elder/shaman/priest/wiseperson would spin tales of creation, of the universe.

Creation specifically, the center circles reaching out across the petroglyph, creating the circles and crosses, giving life across the universe, creation leading to fish, mammals and people.

I would love it if it were a Stargate used by ancient aliens to zip around our universe. Alas I think it may just be human battling to understand their place in the universe.

Keep hunting for the truth.