the site-specific location of the sanctuary


The sanctuary (diameter: 25m / 82tf) is nestled at the foot of a large rock formation (host-rock) in a sheltered bay of naked sandstone. The embracing arms of the rock define temenos (the sacred space or temple precinct).

Quite indistinguishable from its surroundings, yet distinctively present. In spirit and in form, nothing less than a new sipapu: a timeless Place of Emergence resembling its aboriginal predecessors: kivas built in the red earth, with respect for the land.

Half-buried on the desert floor, the shell is patched with raw earth like the weathered back of a great turtle (in a similar fashion to the traditional Navajo hogans scattered across the region).

Anchored in still layers of rock, fed by solar power, it operates as a self-sustaining organism.

The underground access (connector) is dug in the host-rock native sandstone. Entered from the plateau at the top, the narrow & smooth passageway (diameter: from 0.8 to 1.5m — 2.5 to 5ft) snakes its way down toward the sheltered bay. For the organism, a connecting appendage; for the pilgrim, a birth canal...

Just a moment ago, you were contemplating scenic vistas under the sun; you are now crawling your way in the dark underground…onward and toward, the Mysterium Tremendum!

host-rock topographic aerial view

[photographic rendering]

natural look-alikes

hidden treasure of the desert
where awe awaits, unspoiled & raw