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KJ 25 Sacred Mountains
published December 24, 1993
154 pages (bookzine)

Cover Image by Takeda Yoshifumi

Is nothing sacred? In an age when traditional sacred grounds are mined, bombed, paved or ignored all over the planet, when technologies of destruction and creation are used to alter the very fabric of life, some say the sacred has well nigh disappeared. Perhaps it has only shifted its locus, from the communal to the personal, from the integral to the separate. What’s sacred now, in “advanced” societies, is my fun and my money. This is probably the root cause of the cancer epidemics, but not to worry, nature takes many forms and doesn’t need us to survive. The bottom line is, what you hold sacred sets the quality of your life and death.

To consecrate is human. Until the genetic hackers switch our being over to passive mode, we’re going to hold stuff sacred. In doing so, whether we know it or not, we’re going to control our destiny. That’s the thing about being able to be conscious. What’s it going to be?

Obvious and arduous, the mountain seizes our attention. It stands above, it stands for everything, it endures. If it’s in east or south Asia, in a place where people over fifty walk around, you might see a sign of awe or respect — shrine, cairn, monument, grave. And you might not. Like almost every mountain in other parts of the world, most mountains in Asia are mundane, or profaned. The sacred difference? More in the mind than in the mountain. Even in the grand Asian tradition, the publicly sacred mountain of myth and pilgrimage, temple and hermitage, is not so much magical ground as it is a spur to awareness. And so it is in the private encounter with a mountain anywhere, actual or symbolic, that inspires a sense of mysterious, crucial reverence. It makes you feel better, it helps you see, it keeps us together. — Stephen Suloway, Tanuki Valley, Kyoto, 1993

Contents:

SUBLIME PEAKS
THE SOURCE OF THE PERSONIFICATION OF SHIVA – John Brandi

JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH – Ralph Johnstone

THE MARCHMOUNT SYSTEM: CHINESE GEOLOGICS – James Robson

MOUNTAINS OF THE MOON – Bill Porter

LITERARY DIVERSIONS ON MOUNT JIUHUA: CULTS, COMMUNITIES & CULTURE
William Powell

FALLING FLOWERS RISING TO THE THRESHOLD OF THE EYE – Takeda Yoshifumi

PILLARS OF THE SKY – STEPHAN Kohler

FLYING MOUNTAINS & WALKERS OF EMPTINESS: SACRED SPACE IN JAPANESE RELIGIONS – Allan G. Grapard

HIMALAYA – PHOTOGRAPHS BY Linda Connor

HUANG-SHAN – PHOTOGRAPHS BY Wang Wu-Sheng

HUANG-SHAN: THE CULT OF SITE (SIGHT) & REPRESENTATION – James Robson

MOUNTAIN RITUAL
THE SPIRITUAL ATHLETE: THE MARATHON MONKS OF MT. HIEI – John Stevens

MOUNTAINS & WATERS SUTRA – DOGEN, trans. Arnold Kotler & Kazuaki Tanahashi

SEARCHING FOR SANSHIN – Lauren W. Deutsch

I CHING: KEEPING STILL – Richard Wilhelm, trans. Cary Baynes

MOUNTAINS & MYTHOLOGY – Arne Naess

KYOTO: SPIRITUAL WONDERLAND – Umagami Kiyohiko

THE SACRED AND THE PROFANE – Beth Lischeron

SACRED MAN-MADE MOUNTAINS
BOROBUDUR: AN ARCHITECTURAL MANDALA OF THE PILGRIM’S PATH – Heinrich Zimmer with photographs by Ohki Akira

BUILDING THE SACRED MOUNTAIN: TSUKURIYAMA IN SHINTO TRADITION – Gunter Nitschke

DRAGON-CAVES & WATER-FLAMES: IN PRAISE OF CHINESE PAGODAS – Marilyn Gridley

POLYMORPHOUS SPACE: THE CONTESTED SPACE OF MT. NANYUE – James Robson

MAGIC KINGDOMS: TOWARDS A POSTMODERN ETHNOGRAPHY OF SACRED SPACE – Bruce C. Caron

TRAIL LORE
MUSICAL CHAIRS FOR MOUNTAIN GODS – Stephan Kohler

MOUNTAIN FEET – PHOTOGRAPHS BY Stephan Kohler

FIRST STEP ON THE PATH – Tony Henderson

THOSE FAMOUS TWIN PEAKS OF FUJI-SAN – F. J. Logan

THE EMPOWERMENT OF MOUNTAINS – RICHARD EVANOFF

 

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