A team of archaeologists uncovered what seem to be 100 cult sites that include stones in the shape of sexual organs.
The 8000 year old artifacts were discovered in the Eliat Mountains in the Negev Desert of Israel.
The researchers published their findings in the Journal of the Israel Prehistoric Society.
The authors of the study say that the locations where the artifacts were unearthed date back 8,000 years ago and they believe them to have been ancient spots for animal sacrifices.
They are currently investigating to learn more about the mysterious sites.
According to the study, the newly discovered sites are very different from other sites in the southern parts of the Negev desert.
They consist of small stone objects and stone installations that are of different shapes and sizes, circular, elongated and oval.
Also, the archaeologists discovered some objects that have repeated patterns in the shape of elongated cell that point to a circle. The sites also contain various objects which imply that the location used to be a cult site where different rituals occurred.
The artifacts, carvings and stone structures were all found in the same areas, sometimes clustered together.
The experts believe that these sites belonged to ancient people from the Neolithic B period, before pottery began.
The researchers note that the recent findings could offer new insights regarding the spiritual culture of the people during the Neolithic age and their ritualistic practices.
Archaeologists observed that the themes and symbols depicted among the artifacts discovered at the sites seem to involve both life and death.
According to the study, the researchers found artifacts with images that depict the genitalia of both men and women, and death is represented by buried stones set upside down into the earth.
One of the researchers involved in the study, Uzi Avner, said that the circle is a symbol for femininity, while the elongated cell symbolizes the male phallus.
The experts say that the life and death motifs are common in anthropological studies and they are related to ancestral cults.
The archaeologists are currently studying the artifacts, looking to find the meaning behind some of them.
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