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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in temples

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A Call to Pagan Artists

 If you build the candy cottage, the children will come.

 

So: the well-heeled patron (or matron) of the pagan arts comes to you and says: “I want a temple, expense no object.”

What would you design?

What will the pagan temples of the future look like?

The New Paganisms are, for the most part, young religions, virtually all under 100 years old. For various reasons that I won't go into here, temple-building hasn't so far been a priority for us.

But that won't always be the case.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Sarah Avery
    Sarah Avery says #
    The complex needs an outdoor amphitheater, so we can reboot the Dionysia and any other performance-related sacred activities. It w
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Goddess bless 'em. And of course there's the new Asatruarfelgid hoff-in-building in Reyjavik: I've seen sketches but no blueprints
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Not sure about "large scale" but may I be so bold as to point out the Cascadia druids blog about building their shrines, right on
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    May we both live to see it, Michelle, even so.
  • Michelle Gruben
    Michelle Gruben says #
    Interesting! I believe there is some Pagan temple planning astir, albeit in the realm of fantasy film/fiction. I'll bet you anythi

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
The Pyramids of Saqqara, Egypt

Entering the buzzing Cairo souk filled with aliveness, I walked about feeling uplifted, smelling shishlik roasting and hookah pipe smoke. Immensely attracted to the turquoise that was mined in the eastern desert of Egypt; I had to purchase a colorful Nefertiti necklace of orange and turquoise beads, as well as a “had to have” exquisite turquoise ring. The greenish blue tint of turquoise is symbolic of the joy of life and to this day, I frequently wear it.

The Europa Hotel, from which I could see the three Great Pyramids, was home yet again for a few more days. Throughout the nights at the Europa I was in touch with the stars of Sirius and the Pleiades. Bright Light Spirit Beings often came and went, the eyes of which were deep violet and blazed like stars on a clear winter night. This sacred site was full of Star Being energy being pulled in and cellular memory awakened in me as the Pyramids were being activated!

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Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Temples: Ancient Pagans and Sacred Space

In my last article, I put forth the notion that we humans have had the need to create art encoded into our DNA. Along with the need to create images, humans have had the need to “make special,” to “make sacred,” and art can fulfill this need. By bringing art into a space, humans make the space special. When the art reflects beliefs about the divine, the art that inhabits that space makes it sacred. I spoke at length about cave paintings in my last entry, and I believe that those paintings could in fact have been making ancient caves into sacred spaces.

As humans moved from a hunter gatherer existence into something more settled, areas where they settled often included sacred places where their relationships with the divine could unfold – temples. When I was in graduate school, I strove to understand what installations were and what “site specific” art, as installations are more commonly called these days, were and where they fit into art history. Temples themselves are “site specific,” created to meet the needs of a particular people in a particular place. In this article, I will look at some pre-historic peoples and their need for the creation of permanent sacred space.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Breakfast of Giantesses

The year's first favas are in, thank Goddess. It really must be spring.

Vicia faba. Broad beans. Horse beans. Windsor beans. Under their many names, they are the Original Bean, one of humanity's very oldest cultigens; we've been eating them for the past 12,000 years or so, since the end of the last Ice Age. They're the Old World's only true beans, the ones Jack sold the cow for; all the rest, incredibly, come from the New World. Fava beans.

Once long ago, they say, on the southern Mediterranean island of Gozo there lived a Giantess. One day she decided to build two houses: one for herself, and one for her daughter. She carried her daughter on her hip and the stones—I've seen them myself, and many are as big as automobiles—on her head. From these she built two beautiful big houses, one for herself, and one for her daughter. How did she manage to heft such massive stones? Well, she ate magical fava beans, of course, which gave her magical strength.

Then there came a terrible drought, and the crop of favas failed. The hungry Giantess (and presumably her daughter as well) sank down into the Earth. They are there still.

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Ahhh. Egypt, mysterious and wonderful. When we reached our hotel in the southern city of Abu Simbel early evening we discovered that the hotel had been double booked. All fifteen of us were stranded. At eight p.m. the lights went out and dinner was by candlelight. We drank tea and organic Egyptian wine as we sat in the lounge after dinner and waited. It was near midnight when rooms had finally been vacated! Who knows what happened, but we were happy they had happened and settled into our sparse but acceptable rooms for the night.

 The next morning we were off early to see the sun rise over the colossal imposing 67 foot stone carved figures of Ramses II. My foot slipped on the walk and I was in pain. Along with almighty Ramses were the gods Ptah, Amun Ra and Re-Horakte. They lined a sandstone cavern temple. This site was sacred to the goddess Hathor before Ramses decided to build temples. Ever popular and charismatic, on one side of the cavern the statues of Ramses II showed him wearing the White Crown of Upper Egypt and on the south side statues Ramses II wore the Double Crown of Lower Egypt.  The statues had been plucked from their original site by UNESCO and were now 200 feet higher on this taupe sandstone cliff.  

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On the Solstice came the happy news that the temple of Zeus at Nemea is finally without its scaffolding again! Together with the temple of Apollo in ancient Corinth, the temple of Zeus is the most emblemetic of the ancient monuments in the provence of Corinthia. 

 
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Ancient Hellas was brimming with active temples, where many came to sacrifice, plead and vow. The sacrifices are the most famous of the votive action and I've mentioned them--especial animal sacrifice--on lots of occasions. Yet, of equal importance were the votives and thank-offerings ancient Hellens donated to the temples they frequented.

Votive relief from the temple of Artemis at Brauron
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