‘There is an art of moving in the landscape, a right way to move around in it and approach places and monuments. Part of the sense of place is the action of approaching it from the ‘right’ direction.’ The method of approach is governed by a combination of place and time – both seasonal and social – while the ‘art’ is the simultaneous practice of meditation and ritualized operation. ‘Flashes of memory, so to speak, illuminate the occasion and bestows an instinctive grasp of how to behave within a ritual or sacred landscape, and to recognize the type of magical energy to be encountered there.’ [A Phenomenology of Landscape, Christopher Tilley]
Mountains form the most spectacular creations on the planet and cover such a large amount of Earth’s landmass that they can be seen clearly from outer space. Mountains are also a reminder that humans count for nothing in the greater scheme of things. They were formed by tectonic plate upheavals of such magnitude that the fossilised remains of prehistoric sea-creatures can be found on mountains tops; in fact, many Himalayan rocks were originally sediments on the primordial Tethys Ocean floor. In this first of the Sacred Landscape series we look at ways of connecting with the genii locorum that inhabit the caves and mountains of our world.
A companion volume to Sacred Landscape: Groves & Forests and Sacred Landscape: Lakes & Waterfalls.
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