Gnostic Catholic Temple in the Clouds
by Dionysos Thriambos
This piece was originally written as a personal fantasy in response to a question from Sr. Phoenix regarding “the perfect temple space for mass (if they could have anything they wanted!)” It has since undergone one major revision.
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
The temple exterior would be stone. The front entrance would be in the West, with an approach of seven low steps up towards Boleskine and the heavy wooden double-doors. These outer doors of the temple would be painted dark crimson, and have the words QELHMA and AGAPH spelled vertically on them in large brass letters. Massive sphinx statues would flank the doors.
Immediately inside the outer doors would be a generous narthex area, approximately 35' from north to south, and 20' from west to east. It would comfortably furnished, with carpets and lounge-type seating. There would be two more sets of double doors in the north and south walls, and two corridors spaced about 20' apart would exit to the east towards the sanctuary. Between the corridor openings, there would be a wall niche with a bowl of lustral water and a small censer, that people could use to cleanse and consecrate themselves before entering the sanctuary.
Beyond the north double doors there would be a large chamber formed by a 40' diameter geodesic dome, primarily for use in ceremonies requiring a circular space. Beyond the south double doors there would be another geodesic dome of the same scale, but it would be subdivided, with a ground floor made up of a dining hall and kitchen, plus an upper floor consisting of a boardroom-style meeting area.
The left corridor exiting east from the narthex would lead for about 30' past restrooms and a library to a heavy wooden door with a dove carved on it. The right corridor would lead for about 30' past a classroom, an office to a heavy wooden door with a Chnoubis (lion-serpent) carved on it. The dove and serpent doors would both open into the central sanctuary chamber.
This chamber would be a stone sanctuary 26' x 48', with a vaulted ceiling peaking at 33'.
The priest's tomb would be a veiled doorway in the western wall (i.e. between the dove and serpent doors), with a pylon around it in relief, showing a winged beetle over the door and Anubis figures (i.e. jackal-headed humanoids in Egyptian costume) flanking it. Beyond the doorway would be a landing about 3' deep, beyond which a stairway would lead down into the tomb proper, which would be heptagonal, about eleven feet across and eleven feet high, with at least the floor and ceiling designs for the Vault of the Adepti, even if it featured no pastos or additional RR&AC features. The tomb would have an additional exit leading up into the office through a trapdoor.
Candle sconces would flank and crown the western pylon. These three, plus a single candle at the altar of incense, plus 22 more at the shrine, would make 26 total in the sanctuary, thus alluding to the formula of Tetragrammaton. They would be supplemented by a set of eight hanging lamps for illumination.
There would be a large stained glass window above the door to the tomb, with a design modeled on the Lust Trump from the Crowley-Harris Tarot. High on the eastern wall would be a stained glass window modeled on the AEon Trump. Smaller windows on the north and south walls would show other trumps. Reading the south wall from west to east: The Empress, The Fool, and the Devil. Reading the north wall from west to east: The Hierophant, Adjustment, and Death. Artificial lighting would be nested in the frame of the window, between the stained glass inner window and the plain glass outer one, in order to display the images.
The north and south sides of the sanctuary would be carpeted, and movable seating would be available for up to sixty people. The central corridor of the sanctuary, a path 11' wide from the tomb to the shrine, would have a rich hardwood floor. The font would be white marble. The altar of incense would be fuliginous marble, draped in black velvet.
The dais would be entirely black and white marble squares. The enclosing veil of the shrine would be soft white on the outside and purple and midnight blue within, and would be eight feet high, with an additional eleven-inch valence above it, with designs of cherubims and palm trees and open flowers, in silver and gold. The crimson cloth of the high altar would have the Mark of the Beast in gold on its front. There would be seats for the acolytes at the foot of the dais on the far left and right of the shrine. The pillars would be Doric, reaching to the ceiling, and thus over two feet in diameter at their bases. (They would be visible above the closed shrine, flanking the AEon window.)
The dais and shrine would be only 16' wide, thus leaving 4' walls intruding from the sides of the sanctuary in the east, each with a veiled doorway. The passages behind these doors would lead beyond the eastern wall of the sanctuary to a 22' diameter geodesic half-dome, which would have on its south side a preparation area for the deacon and acolytes, furnished with a basic sacramental kitchen (sink and washing supplies, wine goblets, large toaster oven), and other supplies. There would also be a water closet. The north side of the half-dome would be the priestess' sacristy, complete with bathing facilities. On the priestess' sacristy door there would be a five-pointed star, with a circle in the middle, and the circle is red. The sacristy would also be accessible through a hidden door inside the shrine.
Doors from the kitchen and sacristy would exit to the outdoors, where a garden would be planted to the immediate east of the temple building. It would be filled with flowers and herbs,and provided with comfortable benches. In the center of the garden, there would be a fountain, with an ouroboros forming the rim of its pool.
Love is the law, love under will.
— fileinfo: path: '../hermetic.com/dionysos/cloud.htm' created: 2016-03-15 modified: 2016-03-15 …