THE SUN TEMPLE

Landscape elements play off each other, revealing different relationships at different times of the year. We have created a place to relax, meditate, gather, grow, develop, discover and play; a place where one feels connected to the heavens as well as the earth.

The parking, plaza, lake, pavilion and play area are integrated into the landscape. The overall design can be read as a map of the cosmos or of cells separating. Taking inspiration from NASA and archaeoastronomy, we have honored the long tradition of studying the movement of the planets, sun and moon and our journey to understanding the mysteries of the heavens. We have placed elements in the park in a way that empowers the harmonious interaction between the person and place and the heavens.  

The plaza design incorporates a cooling element, laurel oaks planted in a circle with a large open area in the center for meetings. The thirteen trees represent the 13 moon cycles in a year. Points on the outer ring of the paving pattern point to north, south, east and west. When one stands in the center of the plaza, split stones mark the point on the horizon that the sun will appear to rise at the northern most point (about June 21) and the southern most point (about December 21) during the year.  

The labyrinth in the paving pattern in the center of the plaza is based the medieval design in Chartres Cathedral in France. The builders of Chartres used a cubic measurement that is hundred thousandth part of the degree of the parallel of latitude of Chartres or .738 meters. (Reims has a cubic measurement of .71 a degree of 71 kilometers and Amiens a cubic of .70 and a degree of 70 kilometers.) It is obvious that the relationship of the earth to the sacred structure was important to the medieval builders.

The Sun Temple, 2001
Concrete pavers, carved granite, oak trees
Sylvan Rodriguez Park, Clear Lake TX

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