Sacred Sites and Power Places
An Exploration of their Mysterious Powers



What exactly is it that makes certain places "sacred"? In one sense this is an absurd question for the entire earth and every thing upon it is an equal creation of the great spirit. Yet, none the less, there are particular places that humans have singled out as having some rare essence, quality or magical power. All across the world, in every culture and period of their existence, people have venerated specific sites upon the land. How are we to explain this matter?

What I will briefly introduce here is the idea that there are a number of different ways we may account for the mysterious power of sacred places. From visiting and studying hundreds of these places around the planet I have thus far identified twenty distinct factors that contribute to the presence or the 'energy fields' which saturate and surround these sites. These twenty factors may be grouped into three broad categories. They are the power inherent in the Earth itself; the power resulting from the structures and artifacts that humans have created at the sites; and the power of human intention. Let us consider a few examples from each of these three categories.

Regarding the power of the Earth, we may speak about the geophysical characteristics of the sacred site locations. Studies conducted over the past few decades have shown that a large number of ancient pilgrimage centers are situated in geographic areas having a high degree of seismic activity, rock faulting, underground water, rich mineral concentrations and natural radioactivity. These geophysical anomalies create localized energy fields which cause specific reactions in human beings. For example, certain parts of the brain are sensitive to magnetic fields, particularly the temporal lobe region which handles memory, dreams and feeling. It is interesting to note that temples at such magnetically charged places are often utilized for their ability to induce visionary states of consciousness.

The natural power of a place can also be concentrated and amplified by human design. One way in which this can be done is through the medium of architecture. Paul Devereux, one of the world’s leading authorities on sacred architecture comments that, "Three dimensional structure and vibration are absolutely, though mysteriously, connected. This is well known to the makers of musical instruments and it was also known to the architects of ancient temples. For example, a particular structural geometry and precise directional orientation of a pyramid shape completely alters the electromagnetic properties of the space contained within the pyramid. Certain shapes found in ancient shrines, developed and designed according to the mathematical constants of sacred geometry, actually gather, concentrate and radiate specific modes of vibration." Such vibrations set up resonating frequencies within human anatomy and thereby have powerful therapeutic effects.

The above essay is an excerpt from Martin Gray's book, Places of Peace and Power.
Photograph and text Copyright©1983 - 1997 by Martin Gray.

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