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Exploring Religions

Explore Judaism, Buddhism and Catholicism by visiting the Western Wall, the Guan-Yin Temple and la Sagrada Familia!
by

Mercedes de Padua

on 5 June 2013

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Transcript of Exploring Religions

You are here! First stop, the Western Wall! The London Ontario Experience! Here, we begin our journey. Time to Pack! An individual may have a thorough knowledge on their own religion, however it is beneficial to explore other world religions to promote unity and appreciation among a community. A way to experience a portion of another religion is to analyze it's worship space. To comprehend religions such as Judaism, Buddhism and Catholicism, worship spaces like the Western Wall, the International Buddhist Temple and La Sagrada Familia can be perceived. It's time to travel! Welcome to Jerusalem, Israel, home of the Western Wall! Early History of the
Western Wall The Kotel is often referred to as the holiest site in the world for Judaism. It is recognized as the last remainder of the Second Temple located. In addition to creating the Second Temple in 19 BCE (which stood on the holy Temple Mount) Herod the Great is believed to have wanted to expand the area of his temple and in his renovation he also added four supporting walls. (The Kotel) The Temple Mount: Originally known as Mount Moriah, in Jewish tradition the Temple Mount is recognized as where many fundamental events in Jewish history took place. Some believe the Temple Mount is where the first man, Adam, was created and where Abraham prepared his son for sacrifice. (The Kotel) The Kotel is often referred to as the "Western Wall" because of its position as the western supporting wall from Herod's expansion. The Second Temple was later destroyed by the Romans in 70 CE, however the destruction avoided the four walls. According to thekotel.org "what makes the Western Wall (and not one of the other three remaining support walls) the most special is its proximity to the location of the Holy of the Holies in the Temple". (The Kotel) The Liberation of the
Western Wall For over 3,500 years of the Jerusalem's history, the city and the Western Wall has been invaded and claimed repeatedly and relentlessly. Control of the city continued to be a controversy into the 20th century (wiseGEEK). For almost 20 years, between 1948 and 1967 the Jewish people were disconnected from the Wall (Israel). Arab leaders were in control of the wall until the Six Day War(wiseGEEK). On June 7, 1967 the Western Wall was liberated and the Jewish were now able to return to the Wall and pray. For Judaism the Wall not only continues to be sacred from its history with God, but also from the undying love and devotion from its people for their religion throughout the years. (Israel) Fact: Unfortunately the liberation of the Western Wall has caused bitterness between Arabic countries and Israel. (wiseGEEK) Fun Fact: In the Middle Ages the Wall also became known as the "Wailing Wall" as Jews were often found mourning the destruction of the Temple. Legend says that on the anniversary of the destruction of the Temple the Wall sheds tears. (Israel) Prayer at the Western
Wall The Western Wall contains a rich background with God and its people. With this history and connection to God, it is only reasonable that this is the perfect place of worship. Even in modern times, millions of visitors experience the Wall every year (The Kotel). Plenty of Jews around the world and tourists go to pray at the wall, as some believe the wall has the "ear of God". Many men and women also place letters of prayer into the cracks of the wall, and when there are too many prayers, they are removed and buried. (wiseGEEK) Fun Fact: The Western Wall has been a destination of reconciliation between Catholics and Jews. Pope John Paul II has been the first pope to pray at the wall and also apologized for the Catholic brutality towards Jews. (wiseGEEK) The Wall is not only a site of prayer, but a site of pilgrimage, celebrations (such as weddings and Bar/Bat Mitzvahs) and pledges where soldiers serving the Israeli Forces swear loyalty to their nation. (The Kotel) Fun Fact: There are separate entrances for men and women, however they can regroup at the Wall. (wiseGEEK) Welcome to Richmond, British Columbia! Let's take a closer look
at the Guan-Yin Temple! History of the Guan-Yin Temple The International Buddhist Society, a religious and cultural organization manages the Guan-Yin Temple. Before the Guan-Yin Temple's opening ceremony in September 1983 Mahayana Buddhists in the Vancouver, Canada region did not have an authentic Chinese place of worship in which to study and practice Buddhism in. The Temple is built upon donated land and money and is recognized for bring Chinese cultural heritage and religious diversity to Canada. (The International Buddhist Society) Architecture and Horticulture The Guan-Yin Temple is known as the most authentic Chinese imperial-styled architecture across North America and is based on the Forbidden City located in Beijing, China. To continue to respect Buddhist teachings, traditional Buddhist structures such as the Northern imperial style are used to give priority to accentuate the designs once reserved for only the emperor. The imperial colour yellow and many dragons which symbolize the imperial regime can be found throughout the temple. Similar to the Forbidden City, symmetry is also an important element to be used which signifies balance. Other than the architecture, the horticulture of the temple heightens the experience to a new level. With the elaborate plant arrangements placed throughout the temple and the recreation of Deer Park visiting the temple leaves a feeling of travelling into an oriental world, which is truly a unique kind of experience to enjoy in Canada. The Guan-Yin Temple truly supplies Canadian Buddhists with a traditional, cultural environment to practice their beliefs. (The International Buddhist Society) Works of Art: Sculptures and Paintings When we refer to the Buddha, we are not only referring to the founder of Buddhist Siddhartha Gautama, but also to other men or women who have achieved enlightenment. There are plenty of people who have reached the point of unchanging peace and have been proclaimed Buddhas, and each have an encouraging story. At the Guan-Yin Temple there are numerous Buddhas and Bodhisattva that are portrayed by many artists in sculptures and paintings to stimulate the "Buddha nature" in others. Fun Fact: The Sakyamuni Buddha placed in the main Gracious Hall is the largest Buddha statue in North America ranging at 35ft tall! Since 1986 the Guan-Yin Temple has held a monthly art showing known as "Karma of the Brush" where artists and calligraphers in the area reveal their art to the public. Guan-Yin now contains hundreds of Buddhist paintings and calligraphy which are all created by dedicated Buddhists. These creative works can be found throughout the temple grounds and help Buddhists remain mindful of the various characteristics and vows made by the surrounding Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. (The International Buddhist Society) Fun Fact: Fung Kai Mun spent two years creating the Seven Buddha Mural. This mural is the largest in the world and is located in the temple's Seven Buddha Pavilion. Welcome to Barcelona, Spain, home of La Sagrada Familia! An Expiatory Church La Sagrada Familia is internationally famous for its complex architectural content. It has been under construction for over a century and many are still dedicated to the completion of this church. To experience this church is to experience a grand castle-like structure that literally has history engraved into its walls. This is why it is extraordinary to understand that La Sagrada Familia is an expiatory church, meaning that since the beginning of construction, the church has been built solely by donations. As Antoni Gaudi, the man recognized as the original architecture of this church has said, "The expiatory church of La Sagrada Familia is made by the people and is mirrored in them. It is a work that is in the hands of God and the will of the people." (Basilica de la Sagrada Familia) Architecture: The Complexity When Antoni Gaudi took the task of building La Sagrada Familia in 1883 he dedicated the rest of his life towards the basilica . Within the last years of his life he planned many more structures for the church so they could be built later on. With the complexity of his constructive qualities such as paraboloids, hyperboloids, conoids, helicoids and ellipsoids he eventually invented a new column for architecture: the double twisted column. Although he was aware he would not be able to complete the church in his lifetime he organized ideas and construction that could be carried on after he passed. He did not build all the walls at the same time on the same level so each generation could have a different protagonist for his works. Fun Fact: Gaudi was so specific on the details of a nativity scene that he raised a live donkey to the side of the church so he could analyze how it would look in that nativity scene. (TravelUnearthed) In modern times, over a century later, present management and the Church Technical Office are still studying the complexity of Gaudi's original project and the church remains under construction to this day. The dedication placed into this church can only be explained by persistant Catholics that have never given up on La Sagrada Familia. (Basilica de la Sagrada Familia) Symbology: The Nativity Facade Here we end our Journey. Overall, each worship space has a history and an interconnectedness with their religion. The Western Wall is known to be the place where plenty of pivotal events in Judaism have taken place, and is also a symbol of undying love and devotion from its people; The Guan-Yin Temple helps Canadians experience the original oriental feel of Buddhism and is a site of serenity; and last but not least La Sagrada Familia has Catholic history rooted into its walls and through dedication and donation Catholics continue the seemingly unending task of constructing the building. By having a look into these worship spaces one can begin to fathom each of their religions. Welcome home! The Bell Towers The Episcopal Symbols: The Holy Trinity The Cypress The Upper Section of the
Portal of Charity The Portal of Hope The Marriage of the
Virgin Joseph and Jesus The Flight into Egypt The Portal of Charity The Coronation of
Mary The Annunciation The Nativity The Adoration of the Magi The Adoration of the Shepherds The Portal of Faith The Immaculate Conception The Finding in the Temple The Visitation Christ the Worker The Nativity facade which is located as the east exterior of La Sagrada Familia is dedicated to the birth of the Messiah, Jesus and his early years. It was the first facade to be completed and is also known as the facade of Life, the facade of Joy and the facade of Christmas. As you will see, each sculpture in the wall is a symbol. In the next slides you will witness my best portrayal of a virtual tour of the Nativity facade. dedicated to the twelve apostles dedicated to the bishops. The Tersanctus These are 3 engravings from the liturgy of the Eucharist. The 3 engravings follow the liturgical order from highest to lowest. The top engraving reads "Hosanna" and "Excelsis" vertically which would translate to "Hosanna in the Highest". The most apparent engraving (the Tersanctus) reads "Sanctus Sanctus Sanctus" which translates to "Holy Holy Holy". The lowest engraving reading "Sursum Corda" which translates to "Lift up your hearts". Barnabas Each bell tower is dedicated to an apostle and this bell tower was dedicated to Barnabus, where there is a figure of Barnabus seated with a series of letters that read his name and the word apostle in latin: Barnaba Apostolus. Mary and Joseph seal their
wedding vows. Jesus as a young child and his earthly father figure Joseph portrayed in a childhood scene in Nazareth. The Holy Family flee from Israel for refuge in Egypt to escape King Herod. Jesus Crowns Mary as Queen of Heaven while Joseph observes on the left. This piece is the only scene that does not fit into the Nativity facade's time frame. Gabriel announces to Mary that she will conceive the Son of God. Mary lifts her son Jesus from the cradle. Three noble figures prostrate towards Jesus and have brought him gifts. Four shepherds of different ages kneel before Jesus and have brought him gifts. Represents the eternal love of Christ Mary is portrayed with her arms crossed and effortlessly stepping on a snake. This is symbolized that evil has no power against Mary. Joseph and Mary find Jesus in a temple after searching for him for three days and stare at him in awe. Jesus has the knowledge of doctors. Mary visits her relative Elizabeth who has conceived despite her age, and Elizabeth greets Mary with "Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb". Jesus works as a carpenter on Joseph's bench. This is the last of scenes about Jesus' earthly life before he began his religious journey. Chronologically, this is the last of the nativity facade. The series of the Nativity facade reveals the story of Jesus' conception till the end of his childhood. As this is only one of the four facades, each facade has a series, stories which reveal the history of Catholicism into the building. Antoni Gaudi's work has truly placed the story of Jesus into the basilica. There is also the Passion facade, the Glory facade and the Apse facade. (Basilica de la Sagrada Familia) Unknown Author. "What is the Western Wall?" The Kotel. N.p. N.d. Web. 25 May 2013. <http://english.thekotel.org/content.asp?id=212>.
Unknown Author. "What is the Wailing Wall?". wiseGEEK. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.wisegeek.org/what-is-the-wailing-wall.htm>.
Unknown Author. "The Western Wall and the Temple Mount." Israel. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.goisrael.com/Tourism_Eng/Tourist%20Information/Jewish%20Themes/Jewish_Sites/Pages/The%20Western%20Wall%20and%20the%20Temple%20Mount%20jew.aspx>.
Unknown Author. "History." The International Buddhist Society. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.buddhisttemple.ca/about-us/history>.
Unknown Author. "Architecture." The International Buddhist Society. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.buddhisttemple.ca/temple/architecture>.
Unknown Author. "Horticulture." The International Buddhist Society. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.buddhisttemple.ca/temple/horticulture>.
Unknown Author. "Paintings." The International Buddhist Society. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.buddhisttemple.ca/temple/paintings>.
Unknown Author. "Sculpture." The International Buddhist Society. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.buddhisttemple.ca/temple/sculpture>.
Unknown Author. "Expiatory Church." Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 1 Jun 2013. <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/historia.php>.
Unknown Author. "Symbology." . Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/simbologia.php>.
Unknown Author. "Symbology." . Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/simbologiaTorres.php>.
Unknown Author. "Symbology." . Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/simbologiaCoronament.php>.
Unknown Author. "Symbology." . Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/simbologiaEsperansa.php>.
Unknown Author. "Symbology." . Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/simbologiaCaritat.php>.
Unknown Author. "Symbology." . Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/simbologiaFe.php>.
Unknown Author. "Sagrada Familia Facts." TravelUnearthed. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.travelunearthed.com/sagrada-familia-facts>.
Unknown Author. "The Sagrada Familia." Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013 <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/gaudi1_e.php>.
Unknown Author. "Geometry." Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013 <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/arquitectura_d.php>.
Unknown Author. "Present Process of the Construction." Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/arquitectura_e.php>.
Unknown Author. "The Church Today." Basilica de la Sagrada Familia. N.p. N.d. Web. 26 May 2013. <http://www.sagradafamilia.cat/sf-eng/docs_instit/arquitectura.php>. is dedicated to the virtue of hope and Joseph dedicated to the virtue of charity or love and to Jesus is dedicated to the virtue of faith and to Mary
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