The Martian Message

By Goro Adachi
Sept. 29, '02
/ Jan. '03

[The following is a portion taken from Chapter 2 of my book The Time Rivers. It should quickly summarize the baffling saga of the "Monuments of Mars" for those not very familiar with the subject.]


19.5°: A Signal From Mars

[...] The esoteric significance of 19.5° was actually first brought to mankind’s attention through another celestial body much closer to Earth – the Red Planet.

This is not as strange as it sounds. For instance, Mars happens to be intertwined with ancient Egypt in curious ways: 

  • The Egyptian capital Cairo, situated adjacent to Giza, derives its name from Al Qahira denoting Mars. (More literally it means ‘the victorious’.)

  • The ancient Egyptians called Mars ‘Horus of the Horizon’ (Horakhti), which was the very same name given to the Great Sphinx. Mars was also called ‘Horus the Red’ (Hor Dshr), and for a long time the Sphinx was painted red.[1]

  • Just as the Great Sphinx is the hybrid of man and a lion, in ancient Hindu myths Mars is Nr-Simha, the ‘Man-Lion’.

  • The term ‘pyramid’ derives from the Greek term pyr meaning ‘fire’, as in Mars the ‘fire planet’. (Mars is often referred to as pyroeis in Greek.)

As for the angle 19.5°, it resides at the heart of the geometric ‘message’ claimed to have been found on the deceptively barren Martian surface.

Indeed, the first sign of the ‘Martian message’ emerged through certain structures that were not only pyramidal but also tetrahedral.

These apparent pyramids were captured on camera in 1972 by NASA’s Mariner 9, the first spacecraft to enter Mars orbit in history. As it flew over a region called Elysium Quadrangle, the probe just happened to detect this ‘tip of the iceberg’ – as they would turn out to be – quietly sitting there.

While no serious scientific investigation was launched, it was certainly anomalous enough for celebrated scientist Carl Sagan to comment that these ‘beckoning pyramids’, as he called them, did ‘warrant…a careful look’.[2]

Following this little prelude came Cydonia.

Oh my God, look at this!’, exclaimed Tobias Owen of JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) as he came across a photograph labeled 35A72, sent from Mars by Viking 1 in 1976. What he saw was the now infamous ‘Face on Mars’ situated in a region called Cydonia.

It was a rock formation resembling a huge human face silently staring up into space.

While seemingly a silly notion, there was at least some symbolic coherence here, as noted by Richard Hoagland, in that the Egyptian name given to the ‘Martian god’ Horus was Heru, which could also mean ‘face’.[3] 


Figure 2.6  The first picture of the ‘Face on Mars’ (35A72) taken by the Viking spacecraft in 1976.

Then came Vincent Dipietro, a NASA computer scientist, who discovered another photograph (70A13) in 1979 that showed the same object still looking like a face. But more importantly, DiPietro along with Gregory Molenaar found another peculiar feature in the vicinity of the ‘Face’. This was a gigantic and seemingly five-sided pyramidal structure, nicknamed the ‘D&M Pyramid’ (after DiPietro and Molenaar).

Unlike the ‘Face’, this pyramid proved to be more effective in determining the involvement of intelligence, thanks to its geometric nature. And shocking was what the subsequent analysis revealed: the inferred design of the D&M Pyramid seemed to express Pythagorean mathematics and geometry![4]


Figure 2.7  Geometric analysis of the ‘D&M Pyramid’ model.

NASA, however, simply could not be bothered to look into the growing mystery.

Understandably frustrated, Dipiero and Molenaar resolved to write Unusual Mars Surface Features – which would catch the attention of Richard Hoagland, a science writer and former space program consultant. (He presently heads ‘The Enterprise Mission’, a group devoted to investigating space anomalies as well as anything remotely related).

Doing some investigation of his own, Hoagland found other anomalous objects in Cydonia, such as what he nicknamed the ‘City’, ‘Fort’, ‘Cliff’, and ‘Tholus’.

Increasingly fascinated by those ‘Monuments of Mars’ and driven by pure curiosity, he went on to establish the Independent Mars Investigation (IMI) funded by SRI International, a renowned think tank in California involved with cutting-edge science and technology. This eventually evolved into the ‘Mars Mission’ and then into ‘The Enterprise Mission’. Among the members were DiPiero, Molenaar, anthropologist Randolpho Pozos, plasma physicist John Brandenberg, SRI scientists Lambert Dolphin and Bill Beatty, image-processing expert Mark Carlotto, and cartographer Erol Torun.

These independent researchers then managed to accumulate ample evidence to strongly support the structures’ artificiality – the most compelling being the geometric attributes of the D&M Pyramid model found by Torun:

What Torun discovered was a mathematically rich figure whose geometry contains the mathematical bases for the hexagon, the pentagon, and the classic proportions of the Golden Ratio… Twenty of the model’s internal angles, angle ratios, and trigonometric functions redundantly express three square root values, sqrt 2, sqrt 3, sqrt 5, and two mathematical constants, pi (the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter) and e (the base of the natural logarithms) with a mean error of one-half of one percent… Except for sqrt 2 and sqrt 3, the constants do not appear alone, but in seven different mathematical combinations... The most redundant values discovered were e/pi, e/sqrt 5, and sqrt 3. These values are repeated four times each in at least two different modes of measurement.[5]

The investigators additionally revealed that the geometry of the D&M Pyramid seemed to emphasize key tetrahedral angles such as 19.5° and 60°.[6] In particular, the ‘tetrahedral constant’ 19.5° was found encoded everywhere in the region of Cydonia.[7] There was, for example, a set of sixteen little ‘mounds’ in the ‘City’ area examined by Horace W. Crater, a physicist and pattern-analysis expert at the Tennessee Space Institute.

Crater was astounded to discover that the mounds were definitely not randomly placed features. Many of the angles made by the mounds, he had to conclude, were decidedly tetrahedral and functions of 19.5°.[8]


Tetrahedral geometry, therefore, had firmly emerged as the ‘message of Cydonia’. And on this point, Hoagland states in The Monuments of Mars:

The key… now unmistakably centers on the geometric and geodetic properties of an inscribed tetrahedron… surrounded by a sphere, communicated so redundantly through the inter-locking geometry, angles, mathematical constants, and their associated trigonometric functions discovered so redundantly across Cydonia.[9]

[Hoagland's 'Geometric Relationship Model' of Cydonia]

If these findings are accurate, it would amount to one of the biggest revelations in history – the first sign of intelligence outside of our own planet. And yet, today the general public is largely oblivious to this development. Most people’s knowledge on this does not go beyond the mere existence of ‘the face-like thing on Mars’, as they are utterly unaware of all the remarkable geometric data.

Why is this? Why is the explosive matter of Cydonia being ignored? Is it because the findings are invalid conclusions conjured up by a bunch of crackpots?

Not so, according to Stanley McDaniel, professor emeritus and former chairman of the philosophy department at Sonoma State University, a man most suited for evaluating this kind of issue for he is specifically trained in reasoning – man’s only true friend in finding truth.

As McDaniel writes in The McDaniel Report: On the Failure of Executive, Congressional, and Scientific Responsibility in Investigating Possible Evidence of Artificial Structures on the Surface of Mars and in Setting Mission Priorities for NASA’s Mars Exploration Program (1993):

My initial approach was one of considerable skepticism… [But] over the course of the investigation my appreciation for what these researchers had done, and the underlying scientific integrity of their work, began to grow. I found that the occasional faults in their work were far outweighed by the solidity of the data and their responsiveness to the needs of what is, after all, the first study of its kind in history.[10]


The data collected in the course of these investigations appears to be highly reliable. The most advanced techniques of image enhancement, photoclinometry and fractal analysis, confirmed by cross-checking and thoroughly documented, have been used. The investigators are acknowledged experts in their fields with strong academic and professional qualifications. In every test, the data has consistently tilted in the direction of artificial, rather than natural, origin. Moreover, the various tests performed, including anthropometric and aesthetic evaluation, have been mutually cross-confirming.[11]

As it was done by ‘an impeccable, unquestionably academic source’, The McDaniel Report represented ‘a major scientific and political breakthrough for the entire subject of Cydonia’.[12]

So why, we must ask again, have the Martian findings not made the headlines all over the world, as they surely deserve?

We find that this is largely thanks to the strange reaction of the establishment – namely NASA – to Cydonia. On this, McDaniel writes: 

As my study of the work done by the independent investigators and NASA’s response to their research continued, I became aware not only of the relatively high quality of the independent research, but also of glaring mistakes in the arguments used by NASA to reject this research. With each new NASA document I encountered, I became more and more appalled by the impossibly bad quality of the reasoning used. It grew more and more difficult to believe that educated scientists could engage in such faulty reasoning unless they were following some sort of hidden agenda aimed at suppressing the true nature of the data. Eventually my original naïve view – that all NASA scientists were sincerely interested in the truth – was utterly shattered…[13]


Seventeen years [as of 1993] of ridicule by NASA and a small handful of scientists whose field of expertise is severely limited has encouraged many people to ignore the data and dismiss the [issue] as a joke… Instead of carrying out legitimate scientific inquiry, NASA has regularly sent false and misleading statements regarding the landforms to members of Congress and their constituents. NASA has condoned efforts to unfairly ridicule and discredit independent researchers… despite the fact that the only real scientific study of the landforms indicates a clear possibility that they are artificial.[14]

The issue concerning the ‘hidden agenda’ of NASA is ultimately too complex and obscure to delve into here. But suffice it to say that there are those behind the scenes who seem to know much more than the general public, academia, media, and even the government do, and they seem to wield an invisible but strong influence on our perception of ‘reality’. And for whatever reason, it appears that ‘they’ do not want the matter of extraterrestrial artifacts taken seriously.

While there are certainly many layers of reasons and agendas involved here, on a basic level anthropologist Randolfo Pozos was probably on the mark when he stated: 

The greatest difficulty posed by these curious landforms on Mars occurs… at the level of beliefs and fundamental values… In essence these landforms on Mars are intellectual land-mines.[15]

It is also quite feasible that the apparent suppression of the information has much to do with the ultimate meaning of the ‘message of Cydonia’, which, according to Richard Hoagland, concerns what he calls ‘hyperdimensional physics’.

This is a form of ‘hyperspace’ theory that basically adds extra dimensions to the normal four dimensions of space and time to explain physical phenomena. In the model promoted by Hoagland, stemming from the Cydonia research, tetrahedral geometry and angular momentum are viewed as the key to uniting the physical and ‘hyperdimensional’ realms.[16] And this unification, if achieved, would lead to the harnessing of an entirely new form of energy or force.

If valid and developed further, it has the potential to quickly and completely upset the societal structure and utterly undermine those in control of the world’s economy – as the new physics would easily translate to something akin to ‘free energy’, which in turn translates to dramatically decreased dependency on oil and other conventional energy sources.



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[1] Graham Hancock, The Mars Mystery (New York: Crown Publishers, 1998), p.170.

[2] Carl Sagan, Cosmos, (London: Book Club Associates, 1981), p.130.

[3] Richard C. Hoagland, The Monuments of Mars (Berkeley: North Atlantic Books, 1996), pp.286-8.

[4] Stanley V. McDaniel, The McDaniel Report (Berkeley: North Atlantic Books, 1993), pp.129-31.

[5] McDaniel, The McDaniel Report, p.85.

[6] See Ibid., p.91; Hoagland, The Monuments of Mars, p.352.

[7] McDaniel, The McDaniel Report, pp.111-3.

[8] See Hancock, The Mars Mystery, pp.115-7.

[9] Hoagland, The Monuments of Mars, p.351.

[10] McDaniel, The McDaniel Report, p.xvi.

[11]Ibid., p.52.

[12] Hoagland, The Monuments of Mars, p.403.

[13] McDaniel, The McDaniel Report, pp.xvi-xvii.

[14] Ibid., pp.xvii-xx.

[15] Quoted in ibid., p.63.

[16] See Hoagland, The Monuments of Mars, pp.353-73; McDaniel, The McDaniel Report, pp.131-41; David M. Jinks, The Monkey and the Tetrahedron (Seattle: Glass Moon Press, 1999).



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© 2002-3 Goro Adachi