Update 7/2/18: A Teaching Moment Regarding Sacred Symbolism
I decided the cathedral front was a horrible idea. What would it mean symbolically for the temple to have a fake front? Wow. Catastrophically bad idea, right? So let’s talk about symbolism…
Andrew posted what he thinks are the best symbolic colors for the temple in the comments section below which I will summarize now and add some additional correspondences. He suggests red walls, yellow trim around the windows, blue trim around the doors, and purple eaves or overhangs.
- Red symbolizes the planet Mars (named after the god of war), strength, Geburah, and the number 5 — as in the Five Vital Graces of Cabal Fang. Also red is a warning that dangerous things are inside. It screams to wake up and pay attention.
- The yellow trim around the windows symbolizes the solar light that emerges from within. Enlightenment is sought, and realizations are apprehended, inside these walls and its light shines outward.
- The blue trim around the door suggests that one must enter forthrightly being mindful of justice and mercy — blue is the color of Chesed, associated with the planet Jupiter.
- And the purple eaves or overhangs suggest that psychic gifts of the higher mind overshadow all of the work that goes on within. Purple is the color of nobility, of carrying oneself in a manner others can look up to. Purple is the color of Yesod, and suggests therefore that we should be good communicators between the higher realms of the ideal and physical practical realm.
- We aren’t redoing the inside at this time, but Andrew mentions that, although black and white checkerboard is the obvious flooring choice, geometric patterns can interfere with natural movement. The last thing you’d want in a temple of martial arts would be something that encourages movement to a grid instead of movement to the situation.
Symbolism matters. Even when people don’t intellectually know the planetary and Qabalistic associations they still react to colors viscerally. There is a subconscious effect. Don’t believe me? What would it mean if we painted the temple red, white and blue? What if we painted it all grey? All black? Catch my drift?
Based on the above, I’d like to do an artists rendering. But right now I have to go out to the Temple and train. More to come…
Update 6/24/18: A Cathedral Front? A friend of mine has some very insightful thoughts about which colors would be perfect for the temple, and he’ll be posting in the comments soon. In addition, I came up with this completely insane idea: what if, instead of just a coat of paint, we added a false front and a cupola to the temple and made it look like a mini-cathedral? It would one heck of a project, but the temple would be beautiful. And beautiful things are inspiring.
So I did this little before and after sketch. What do you think?
Original post from 6/20/18
The Cabal Fang Temple needs a paint job, and we’d like your input. Please vote in the poll below!
I’m the friend. Here’s an excerpt from my private mail:
my preference outside would be for red walls, yellow trim around the windows, Blue trim around the doors, and purple eaves or overhangs.
This suggests an outer meaning for the temple that Mars is the patron, but that the solar light emerges from within; and that entry is only possible by walking upright and with justice; and that the psychic gifts of the higher mind overshadow all of your work.
Now, inside, even though there might be a desire to have a black and white greeted floor at 1-foot distances, I would urge caution. This is of course one of the ancient emblems of the Western mystery tradition; but my own five years of practice of tai chi showed me that practicing on the floor with any kind of a grid puts you at risk of moving your body to the grid instead of moving your body to your body.
So consider making a painted carpet or wooden overlay to put down on the floor, when you want to do ritual work on a grid. Then it can be taken up when you’re doing martial arts and have a plain floor.
Excellent — thanks Andrew! After I’ve talked it over with the rest of team, I’ll definitely post an update with the scheme we ultimately chose, and then again with pics when the paint’s done. But first I’m going to say a few words about symbolism…