Vacation Exploring Roman Britain: Design of a Spiritual Place

This is part of a new series of blog posts about travelling on vacation....starting with places I have actually visited this post: England!

If you missed my previous posts in this series, here are the links:
Part I Ocean Liner to the UK: Pet Friendly
Part II Cruises: Pets and MOOCs
Part III Cross Country: Cars and Crystals
Part IV Port of Southampton UK: Cars and Tours
Part V Southampton UK: Vegan and Pet Friendly

As you know if you read my previous articles, my dream vacation has been to take my dogs for a walk at Stonehenge. Because I live in California, this scenario has taken quite a bit of strategy on my part to find a way to get to the destination. The strategies were covered in my previous blog posts, in which I virtually arrived at the Port of Southampton, did some sightseeing and found a place to stay.

In my actual visit to England, which happened as a family vacation years ago when I was in my teens, my parents chose to visit many different places. Because one of my parents was born in the UK, our focus was connecting with and meeting our extended family members. We also visited historic castles, churches, and went sightseeing What fascinated me at the time was the tremendous spiritual energies of history that could be felt in an almost tangible way, unlike anything I had previously experienced in the USA.
In recent years, people from around the world have shared their opinions and answers to practically every question imaginable on the internet. I have discovered online what British people have known for centuries:

The tremendously rich spiritual history of the UK is influenced not only by the native religions, but also by having been part of the ancient Roman Empire.

Although the beautiful statues of Roman antiquity rarely appear so far from their source as England, inscriptions to Roman deities may be found in places like the baths of Roman forts. Ancient Roman British temples and foundations have been found at a few different archaeological sites in the UK.

Inspired by the idea of vacationing in England and exploring what remains of that Roman Britain place of Empire in ages past, I recently awoke from a dream and began my day inspired with a new idea. The idea is a theory of design that might incorporate ancient and contemporary spirituality in the same place, with the architectural design and layout of a temple site. The design theory is based on two things:

Contemporary interpretations of some ancient Roman religious decrees hold that neither animal sacrifices, nor statues of the deities, were deemed appropriate for Pagan Roman religious worship during the reign of the Roman King Numa. This interpretation, accepted by numerous contemporaries, confirms an early expression of humane and vegan offerings to the divine. These vegan offerings may be ethically emulated for educational dramatization and historic reenactments of Pagan religious holidays, or for rituals held at spiritual sites.

I have also been inspired by reading a recent book by internationally renowned British voice coach and author Stewart Pearce, whose writing has greatly influenced my feelings about integrating ancient and contemporary New Age style spirituality. The book is The Angels of Atlantis. The book contains illustrations of cards which are available as separate items. I do not own the cards, although the images are lovely.

The book is quite amazing, and describes relationships between archangels, Atlantis, locations on earth, the heavens, and a theory that the names ascribed to deities of the ancient Egyptian and Greek mythological spiritualities were actually the names of Atlantean priests and priestesses of angelic energies.

The energies I feeling emanating from a piece of pink Himalayan rock salt have also been a strong influence. The rock salt, in the form of a tea candle holder, rests in an arched wall niche in my home. Beside the rock salt, and sharing the same niche, are a small replica statue of a Roman Goddess and a flower vase made of a seven day candle with the image of the Lady of Guadalupe wrapped around it. Of these three objects, my sensual impression is that the rock salt feels stronger energetically.

It is possible that the divine, having always been associated with the unknown and the unknowable and in current practice often referred to as being "of the heavens", may have been the result of extraterrestrial energies felt on earth. I'm not saying that aliens arrived on space ships or anything like that. However; the energies of the sky and the stars have been an enormous inspiration to people from times long before recorded human history. These energies may been among the unknowable divine that ancients worshiped.

These energies, which we may know as angelic in contemporary practice, were honored in groves, stone circles, and so forth...both in human-created and naturally created spaces. Early temples, so to speak. The temples may have had a presiding priest or priestess. However; as time went on, people had more things to do than preside as a priest(ess) over a temple space. And so, images of the priests/priestesses may have been created to appear to serve the space, when human priests were absent.

Because the images may have represented priests/priestesses who could "put in a good word" with the angelic, extraterrestrial, heavenly, unknowable divine, people may have left presents or offerings near the statues. Not as divine offerings, but as offerings to the priest or priestess. Over time, the statues may have became conflated with divine energies, and at that point people might leave offerings for statues which were, perhaps, never intended to represent the divine. Only to represent the presiding, yet absent, priests/priestesses.

And because ancient "deities" had very human traits and foibles, it stands to reason that those whom we refer to as ancient deities may, in fact, have been human beings who acted as priests/priestesses.

Outlandish stories arose about the priests/priestesses and their powers, perhaps because of peoples' desire to believe in the impossible...and perhaps, as it is in the present, it's kind of fun. Disneyland indeed has its ancient precedents. Maybe Venus was an exceptionally beautiful and charming priestess of the angelic energies. Maybe Mars was a warrior for his "main profession", that is when he wasn't serving as a priest. And so on...

And again, before carving rock was invented by humans, the most ancient icons of worship would not have been statues representing the divine as human. Instead, the earliest focal points of worship would probably have come from nature. Inspiration may have come from trees, animals, rocks; for example a large black meteorite that fell from heaven to earth was highly regarded as divine.

So, with this theory in mind, it is very possible to construct a new style of temple which includes Pagan statues of Mars, Venus, Jupiter and so part of the design, yet not as the main focal point of worship, which could be a natural grove, the heavens, rocks, or what have you.

So, the temple design becomes, perhaps, an entry point which is promenade or column-lined path, in which the path is formed of statues relegated to the priests and priestesses from our shared ancestral history, as an experience of ancestral reverence rather than as a focal point of worship (aka statues of ancient deities, and also perhaps revered priests and priestesses throughout the ages all displayed within the same context).

Then the promenade or path leads to the sacred space, which does NOT have statues within it. The space could instead celebrate the miracles of the natural world. The place may be a grove, a circle of rocks, one big rock, or another type of natural area which is sacred for reasons that were created by divine energies rather than by human hands.

If an external space is not available, the sacred space might be a lavishly decorated room within a larger building, perhaps to include natural rocks, plants, a water feature, an atrium and/or skylights for example...the sacred space, again, being designed without statues or human images within it. Statues and imagery, when desired, may appear leading to the space, as a part of the pathway of experience within a larger space, and as a remembrance for our shared ancestral human heritage.

This is my vision, perhaps, for a temple which attempts to combine concepts expressed in some contemporary worship systems, such as the idea of avoiding iconic images within a divine worship system, or that angels and deities exist as divine energy and not as created sculptures or images, while (whilst?) giving a nod to the images we human beings enjoy creating, sharing and experiencing, which represent a collective, human, ancestral past we share together.

Comments, please?

To be continued...


BBC - Ancient History in depth: an overview of Roman Britain
www . bbc . co . uk/history/ancient/romans/questions_01.shtml#five

Roman sites | English Heritage
www . english-heritage . org . uk/visit/places/roman/

Exceptionally rare Roman statue unearthed in City of London building site - Telegraph
www . telegraph . co . uk/news/earth/environment/archaeology/10411832/Exceptionally-rare-Roman-statue-unearthed-in-City-of-London-building-site.html

Falling Stars and Black Stone: Humanity's Worship of Meteorites | Ancient Origins
www . ancient-origins . net/unexplained-phenomena/falling-stars-and-black-stone-humanity-s-worship-meteorites-001901

Numa tradition - Nova Roma
www . novaroma . org/nr/Numa_tradition

On sacrifices, a guide for practicioners of the Religion Romana
www . societasviaromana . net/Collegium_Religionis/sacrifices.php