The Temenos Mandala

A few days after completing the fire mandalas, I attempted to incorporate the transformations of the fire mandalas into my dreams mandala design. The drawing below was the result. I placed the fiery quatrefoil and crucible of gold at the center and extended the “rays” to reach the transformed temenos circle on the perimeter of the mandala. Most of the previous designs had open gateways along the ordinal directions. Now there are four closed doorways along the cardinal directions. Pantapolis takes on the character of a container. The sacred hoop forms a ring inside Pantapolis and the walkway is now sky blue.

After drawing this mandala I had this dream:

I’m with a group of people I know at an encampment. I look up and see two objects flying through the air. Both are glowing with heat, and at least one of them is cube shaped, perhaps both. I think of these as asteroids and I sense that when they impact an explosion will result. I feel a bit nervous about the magnitude of the explosion, that it may be a danger to us. The asteroids circle around us and then head off in the direction from which they came. I climb up an embankment to get a better view in that direction. I see a mountain, and then an explosion on the mountain, and I understand that this is the result of the impact of one of the objects. I feel momentarily concerned that the explosion will be so powerful that some harm will result, but then I realize that all is well. One of the objects passes overhead again, goes out of sight, and then I hear a distant explosion.

I felt that a further transformation was needed.

When I drew the The Temenos Mandala, some significant changes did appear. The transformed temenos ring was drawn inside the ring of Pantapolis. I was reminded of a dream in which I heard a voice say, Let’s bring it inside the sacred hoop. And the temenos ring now rests, safely I might say, within the sacred hoop walkway of Pantapolis.

The simple gold ring that took the place of the temenos circle around the mandala reminded me of the Flammarion engraving:

And it felt like the threat from the heavens subsided when this gold band created a boundary between the precinct of the mandala and the transcendent mystery. The aurum non vulgi also belongs in the constellation of attributes of the gold band and the crucible.

The four doors of the my initial temenos mandala recall those of a previous drawing I entitled the Four Door Mandala:

The doors of The Temenos Mandala echo the design introduced in the Four Door Mandala, but now they are double doors. The design simply did not feel complete until the doors doubled so woman and man could enter side by side. Also I wanted the pattern of four squares the double door created.

Quatrefoil windows have been added to the design, providing a view of a clear blue sky. I was reminded of a voice I heard in a dream saying, Skies clear for fifty years. I felt they also represented a dream I had on May 5, 1997 of a clear straight road leading toward a clear blue sky at the horizon. The mandala as a whole reminded me of a rose window, and I realized that there was a rose window in a church near the place I had been working when I drew it.

After drawing The Temenos Mandala, I often sat with it. It took on a profound three dimensional quality, so that I really sensed a round building, which felt like a temenos.