Meanings and symbols in a cathedral

05 May

symbols,cathedralThe Gothic cathedral comes from the harmonious spirit of a community of men determined to guide the people towards the understanding of divine messages already residing in the soul of every individual. The idea, creating and building a structure capable of telling and simultaneously develops decisively between the twelfth and thirteenth century BC, providing the stimulus necessary for the construction of the most fascinating and majestic cathedrals in major European cities.
The diocese of the bishop resides in the heart of villages that have now become the city experiencing high growth, flowering of markets in international trade, centers of scientific cultures, literary and mystical. The prestigious, that indicant seat designed for high-ranking officials in the ceremonies, rites and meetings important to the community, is embodied in the symbol of episcopal authority itself.

The compactness of Romanesque forms are lighter in the slenderness of Gothic columns, the meditative atmosphere rectilinear opens to contemplation of the high luminous iridescent stained glass, while the wall thickness are reduced in favor of more space management slight.

According to the scientist Carpentering, the first impression that one experiences while passing the portal of a Gothic cathedral is a feeling of relief as the backbone, an internal physiological motion that predisposes the body to follow, to come into harmony with environment projected upward. Thrust vertical pilasters, arches and vaults trying to force the man to raise his own look inside to get closer to the sky: “the cathedral is the city of God: the righteous, and all those who, since the creation the world have worked to build the city holy to be taken up. ”

Transition and place of contact between human and divine, the cathedral approach the man of spiritual conception more concrete, allowing it to break free paths of logic and interpretation, to be guided by the sensitivity in the sacred space it finds its maximum expression in the strength of the symbol ” this visible kingdom, the city of God on earth. It is the revelation, the word that does not stop and do s ‘never interrupts, this voice, this representation, this incarnation of the great truths stone.

Profile architectural exterior of the cathedral recalls the image of a mountain, with peaks and peaks declined in campaniles and steeple; portal evokes the entry of a natural cave, like an ancient primitive sanctuary. The relationship between the mountain and the cave, symbols of spiritual centers, flow in the human body between the top of the head and the heart chamber, the cave mouth or under the Montage, hiding there and grows like an urge to get to know, while the summit is the culmination of contemplation.

Cross the threshold of the cathedral means to immerse oneself in a covered space, quiet, but alive in tribal civilizations entering the cabin is considered sacred place reserved for initiations, which exceed the threshold of the border between real world and underworld guaranteed detachment dimension of everyday life to discover a greater inner awareness. Often seen as the cradle where born gods and heroes, home of Sybille, humble dwelling hermits and seers, safe natural protected by dragons, gryphon’s and fantastic animals, the cave is the place of contact with government of depth, so the earth the soul.
The cathedral is not the only one Gd of arrival, but also a time of passage through the entrance in his direction, the symbol that characterizes the sculptures and bas-reliefs, in the antechamber of a city that God raises alert visitors to a toll initiative to venturer within its meanings.

Along the silent aisles, or embedded in the walls of glass, appear statues, paintings and reliefs that the contents of raconteur liturgies, the lives of the Saint with their miracles and works of piety, giving shape to the body and most intimate fantasies of collective imagination of all time, based spiritual life with historical landscape. Besides solar vision, alternate symbols associated with descriptions of realistic or fantastic bestiaries, the rituals of the spiral patterns, the net, the labyrinth, by abstract and geometric ornaments as there were in ancient art , barbaric and Eastern assume the disturbing aspect of life forms.

The meeting and the union at the same time between light and darkness, the iconography theme of the eternal struggle between Good and Evil, the Dragon and the Knight, the Saint and the Gargoyle, dig in the spirit of the man, hit up the sight and imagination, to pave the way these archetypal reflected, as if they had materialized on the arches and peaks: “Cathedral not only to exalt. She teaches. It is not enough to pray. It institute. It does more than touch the hearts. She directs and manages. ” The Cathedral also saw a story most popular and taciturn, with ample spaces neuritis still evoke some image, perhaps difficult to understand for the modern man. Today, in fact, the cathedral is a place reserved for ceremonies and Orthodox liturgical function, while was a time of popular rites were doing well there, frequented by poor people and common. An example is the “Holiday of Gous,” during which the ecclesiastical hierarchy was ridiculed by canning a people able to criticize its appearance the most superficial and pompous.

The man rises to a divine dimension more accessible, involving and directing the precariousness of the religious institution, making a more personal, if not satirical, the significance of sacred time. Medieval man spends his journey according to per-set rhythms, living in profane spaces, outside of the cathedral’s solemn entry into the heart of the divine involve excessive tension to the absolute. With the alternation of the game between serious and silly, every man is worthy of living harmony of an open and welcoming slaver much in the life of the city and in the newspaper of the individual: “the chapels served as a class, and the nave was often used for theater. The farmers spent much time, and even more so gladly that there was always something to see or entente (Jacobs) “.

Cathedral living as a theater, a building of exchanges and meetings, but also as a living stone, through the hands of those who, with dedication and passion, have built the base and sculpted forms. The caste of builders, whose ambition was to act with humility for the glory of the Great Architect, and birth will be as secret collegiate, where the exchange of rituals, weights and measures, will emerge the first “map” draw to fill the silhouette of the secret geometry “aware of being only an instrument of the mind, their practice was part of the job, naturally, in the oldest tradition of initiation, to which the art of building is the art par excellence, the royal art, sacred in nature”.

Result of collective action and choir, cathedral raises its foundations in the construction, real and symbolic space where many hands are involved in the project implementation unit. Apart from the generous contributions and the various offers taught in various forms by all members of the community, it often happened that, one who had not the opportunity to donate goods, offer the work of his arms, mingling with laborers, masons, carpenters, masons professionals. Among all these anonymous, one man stood out, who had been entrusted the management, supervision and finish the drawing on divine earth through the work of the cathedral the Master.

Although the site of division of labor applies and is operated in the best advantages of specialization of each individual, among the duties and functions of coordination functions over manual there was no gap, or difference of rank or Prestigious. The Master reached the highest office through the hard experience gained gradually and personal skills that allowed him to pass from one level to another.

To build the cathedral, a living synthesis of crafts manufacturers, we need a unifying view, a person with his overall vision knows unite the different parts of a broken cohesive whole. The Master is a deep knowledge not only of structural foundations on which we must cut the stone, but also of symbolic language and esoteric behind the bas-reliefs inlaid with floral motifs, behind the grotesque figures carved in complex tangles, in the hands and eyes of saints and martyrs that stand the long aisles.

Responsibility and knowledge of the Master are the result of a long spiritual journey, due to dedication and commitment, where the one who coordinates and manages the construction site is carrying a sacred function, and on whose shoulders “rests heaviest load, the design plan and guide the community so that it carries forward the work. Before becoming an architect, the Master must be a community leader, respected both for his experience in the art that for its spiritual qualities. It accesses its function only after a long and demanding initiation of business, where he learns about both the human soul than that of matter (Jacq) “.

The French poet Baudelaire defined nature as “a temple columns bright sometimes leave out confused words; Man passes there through forests of symbols”. This definition may well be associated with the function of which the cathedral is a carrier, ie a sacred temple tell which messages in different languages, a building speaking the mysterious language of mysticism, and the forest of symbols, because it asks the visitor an effort of interpretation that goes beyond the daily mental disposition with which we analyze, we observe, we admire an artifact to understand the profound beauty.

We must therefore confront without prejudice or deviant interpretations with the metaphysical principles, cosmological and religious who have given life, through the centuries, acts and messages of ancient civilizations. Of ancient Egypt comes, indeed, a spiritual conception of art identical to that expressed in the Middle Ages: “The Egyptian has no word for drawing the artist A beautiful work n is never signed, as the masterpieces of jewelry, such as statues or paintings of the tombs and shrines This is the work that counts.

The artist does not put the goal of achieving a mechanical picture of nature, but through the artifact of sculpture or painting, he actait attempts to put in order within the cosmos, through a language figurative that would interrogate the universe: “why Egyptian art is an interpretation of the world and the artist, living rhythms, creating rituals that will help people to better live the universal reality (Jacq)” .

As for the semantic function of the figure of the Master within the microcosms of the site, and the Egyptian artist becomes the mediator between what can be expressed in words and the world of forms, which gives it an objective reality and visible precisely through consciousness of the inability of what exists in the macrocosm.

In Egyptian art, the proportion of volume tends to follow a fluid dynamic and harmonious, a similar concept becomes essential in the symbolic designs of the cathedral, of apparent aesthetic decorations on one side, sounds vital harmony constant the other; The sacred stone relates to the experience of its dimensional stability, its austere resistance to time.

The Egyptians built on sand, the mass operator and its consistency as a foundation upon which absorb not only the dominant weight, but also small earthquakes due to seismic movements southeaster short course: “We on the contrary we constitutions on tere: it moves more and, eventually, smaller landslides would eventually break the stones if we asked ourselves directly on top of each other. […] like houses of cards: the card is placed horizontally above allowing the other two, vertical, to remain in place (Michaud) “.

Throughout the centuries, sand, man went to the veneration of sacred trees, taking as the starting point for creating buildings, statues and columns, suggesting an ideal form of diversion mystical and esoteric. Thus a stick, as lituus roamin or the caduceus of Hermes, reproduces the energy of the sacred tree from which it was torn, resulting in the power of divination and healing according to which specific functions of the gods Wood was assigned.

“At Dodona in Epires, who was afterwards the seat of a famous Greek sanctuary, the god Zeus was manifested in the oak and spoke oracles through the murmur of its foliage. […] In ancient Egypt , sycamore, identified ue goddess, spoke to the god Osiris, Zeus spoke as oaks (Riverside Monaco) “. In the Old Testament, the center of the Garden of Eden, the Tree is Life beyond, as well as the axial symbolism that characterizes the features it has its roots in the Jewish Balalaika, in Indian religion, cults in the druidism tree, until reaching a total significance of Nature, which includes each element, an image of the Divine likely.

The design of the shaft axis as the cosmos is supporting column inside the cathedral, situated in a fantasy through the eyes of stunned visitors who journey the entire length to reach the summit, which perceive the presence of the Divine immersed in a sky beyond played by pointed arches.

If one side of this duplicity directional expressed as the rise of earthly existence (the horizontal dimension) to the abode of the gods, as the descent from Heaven to Earth, on the other hand it expresses the fluidity of the vertical line is sited in the area of Tere to his breast: “The Earth is not a dead body, but it remains a mind that is the life and soul. All things created, including minerals, derive their strength from the spirit of the Earth. It is life, it is nourished by the stars and gives food to all that lives and abides in it. By work of the spirit from on high, the smoldering earth minerals in it, like a mother her unborn son (Valentino) “.

As the tree, the cathedral receives power, condenses in the crypt for broadcast in the columns and finally in the aisles, the fulfillment of the alchemical Great Work consists of the subjective and objective materialization of the spirit of matter. The cathedral invaded the visitor an active spirituality that makes part of a complicated design, the center of which the individual may perceive the influence and the close relationship that binds the sacred building forces of the universe.

Located in the heart of the city, the cathedral indicates that the entire universe is alive and visible to one who has eyes to “see” and ears to “hear”: “starting in search of cathedrals, we put ourselves in the prospects of the stars, without turning the mirror of the soul towards self-complementation human, but just by pointing the light eternal and creative. Large stone vessels are the doors of the cosmos.

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Posted by on May 5, 2012 in Mysterious


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