Discussions of Mormons and Mormon life, Book of Mormon issues and evidences, and other Latter-day Saint (LDS) topics.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

News Regarding Solomon's Temple

New information about Solomon's temple points to a location on the Temple Mount somewhat different than has been commonly assumed. Instead of being where the present Dome of the Rock is, it may have been a little further east. The new proposed location puts the ancient Temple over a large ancient cistern, where water was drawn out for daily purification and washing rituals.

As one can read in the works of Mircea Eliade and others, such as Jewish scholar Jon Levenson (see his tremendous book, Sinai and Zion), the symbolism associated with ancient temples also includes the concept of taming the waters of chaos. Subterranean water beneath the Temple can symbolize primordial chaos conquered by the power of God in the Creation, and also represent the world of the dead. In this ancient paradigm, the temple is the axis mundi, the great axis of the world that joins the realms of the dead, the living, and the heavens. How well that concept fits with the restored LDS Temple, where the baptismal font, the lowest part of the Temple, provides the symbolic subterranean water in a sense, and plays a role in joining the realm of the dead to the living, freeing the dead who accept the Gospel and offering them the blessings of the heavens.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Jeff, please clean this post up. It looks really bad when you have typing errors.

Proud Daughter of Eve said...

What this post makes me wonder is: if this location can be verified as the "real" location, will that make it possible to rebuild the Temple without demolishing the Dome of the Rock?

Mormanity said...

Slightly cleaned. That's what I get for writing in a hurry between meetings at Church! Busy day.

Clark Goble said...

This isn't new though, is it? I recall back in the early 90's a lot of people thinking this was the case.

Anonymous said...

Having read the Left Behind series, this sounds very much like what those authors came up with as well. Two temples side by side on the temple mount. One Christian and one Muslim. Everyone living in peace and harmony.

Anonymous said...

As far as the temple is concerned, it can be any building or a tent for that matter.

Anonymous said...

I believe that a temple is anywhere there is an altar. The article for "Altar" in the Encyclopedia of Mormonism by Bruce H. Porter provides some interesting insights into this idea...