The nature of sacred places is comparable to the nature of the divine in that nothing is unrelated to them. Our life’s destination is not a place, but a new way of looking at things.
Sacred places are perceptions of reality
Sacred places are not locations but events where all time is eternal time
Sacred places are sites for remembering
Sacred places are renewed crucibles of consciousness
Sacred places are an encyclopedia of self-knowledge
Sacred places are time capsules from ourselves to ourselves
Sacred places are portals to eternity
Sacred places are a geography of the imagination
Sacred places are centers of the sacred and profane
Sacred places are realms of things to come.
“River banks lined with
green willows, fragrant
A place not sacred?
——-Sayings of the Masters
“I’m too religious to believe in religion. You don’t have to believe in a sacred world. It slaps you in the face. It is everywhere.”
—-an eighty year old Hungarian friend to Gretel Ehrlich, poet and novelist
“We all move on the fringes of eternity and are sometimes granted vistas through the fabric of illusion.”
—Ansel Adams, photographer
“To acquire the awareness of the Divine, one need not journey to any special region or place. It is enough if the eye is turned inwards. I the Bhagavadgita, the Inner Reality, the Atma, is described as “splendorous like a billion suns.” But man has not become aware of the light or power within.”
—Sri Sathya Sai Baba, Indian avatar
“We have seen, you and I, the laughing sirens of the trees.
We have been fortunate because, it is said, they are rarely seen, if ever, that they never venture beyond the forest of pine and cedar but stay in the shadows of the thicket of the wood. It is said that these women you have seen cannot think for themselves, that their minds are not their own. It is said, that the women you have seen before your eyes go through life with no intent but to frolic, to make merry and to laugh. It is said that the young who fall and are seduced into their camp return not unto their own but stay with the creatures who think not and cannot reason to know what is good and what is evil. It is said that if in your ramblings you hear this laughter in the wood behind a tree, tarry not, but turn and go the other way. It is said that this is difficult to do when one is young.
—-Laughter Behind the Trees, from the Tloo-Qwah-nah Ceremony, told by George Clutesi, Nootka writer and artist.
“Here, my brothers, are the roots of trees, here are empty places; Meditate.”
—Ancient Buddhist Philosopher
“There is in India a tree whose property it is to plant itself. It spreads out mighty
arms to the earth, where in the space of a single year the arms take root and put
forth anew.” —Pliny (A.D. 70), on the wondrous Banyan tree
Rainbow over the French Broad River, Arden, NC
Photograph and copyright by Barbara Mattio 2016
“Stones, plants, animals, the earth, the sky, the stars, the elements, in fact everything
in the universe reveals to us the knowledge, power and the will of the Originator.”
—Abu Hamid Muhammad Al-Ghazzali, Persian mystic, 1058-1111.