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The Houses of Worship- what they represent

The Houses of Worship  - click for larger image - opens seperate window in browser

Ever since the dawn of civilization, human-beings have compulsively, driven by their great rulers and the priestly class, engaged themselves in creating 'great' monuments to God. Entire city-states must have been consumed in the creation of the great Zigurrats (including the Tower of Babel mentioned in the 'Bible') in ancient Mesopotamia, the Pyramids of ancient Egypt, the Stonehenge in the ancient Britain, as indeed across the world, notably in Africa, China and The Americas- all of which no doubt embodied basic spiritual principles, but were mistakenly construed as pathways to eternal life.

The first Tabernacle ('House of God') in the wilderness (- Exodus) was built by Moses as a replica of the mansion he was shown by Jehovah at Mt. Sinai (Mt. Kailash or Mt. Olympus or Mt. Horeb of Elijah) or 'Single Eye' or 'Shiva Netra', with a cloud on its summit amid 'burning bush'. This was essentially a representation of Microprosopus- the inner human being. But in the process of representation, the point was lost that these temples were all merely symbolic, and the truth of heavens they represented could only be realized ('Paradise regained') within the chamber within the human body, the true temple of God itself!

Interestingly, a careful examination of the architecture of the temples and churches of the various religious faiths reveals several common aspects. They generally have a dome-shaped roof, representing the human crown. The arch on the doors and windows is inspired by the shape of the human forehead. The Hindu temples of South India have an erect structure known as Gopuram with 6 steps, representative of the human backbone (Meru-dand- Mt. Meru) along which are located the 6 chakras- ganglionic spiritual centres or 'lotuses'.

The Church Steeple represents the human nose (seen from the side-view), with a Cross atop it at its bridge- the Triveni or Prayag- confluence of the 3 subtle veins or inner rivers: Ida (Yamuna) to the left, Sushumna (Saraswati) to the middle and Pingala (Ganga) to the right i.e. at the Third or Single Eye.

The Sufis describe the human body, the microcosm, as having 9 outer portals or apertures, the 10th inner one (the Shiv Netra) leading to Noor Mahal ('Lord's radiant mansion'), which has 12 minarets (2 hands, 2 forearms, 2 upper arms, 2 feet, 2 legs, 2 thighs), 52 turrets (32 teeth, 20 nails) and 2 windows- eyes.

At the 'sanctum sentorum' of the temples of various kinds is the deity, whose worship is accompanied by representation of Light (in the form of candle, wicker lamp, torch and suchlike) and Sound (bell, gong, drum, conch, or loud recitation as by the muezzin in a mosque and suchlike) offered to the deity- generally in stone. But the true sanctum sentorum is in the human body at the Shiva Netra, where 'Naam' or 'Holy Word' can be experienced and the Master (Guru- 'one who can take us from darkness to Light') appears ('gives Darshan') in His Astral form.

To conclude, the true Temple of God is the human body made by divine hands themselves, and the external temples/churches are but its replicas or models in bricks, stones and mortar- mere kindergartens of spirituality, devised by spiritual teachers (such as Narad, Ved Vyas and Moses) to explain to their students the nature of the inner reality (much in the manner we use the globe to understand the earth!) or at best as schools, where preliminary meditation exercises in focusing the attention were taught, using the external deity as the initial focus.


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text content by a student of Sant Mat who prefers to remain anonymous. I didn't write this so please don't attribute it to me - MAK.
page first uploaded 3 August 2004, last modified 18 August 2005