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The Temples of Damanhur

 Close to Torino in Northern Italy lies the quiet Valchiusella valley, which hides a secret below ground. This mysterious place is unknown to most visitors and for a time, was even unknown to the Italian government. This valley is home to a stunning temple complex known as the Temples of Damanhur. It features a vast underground temples which commenced works forty years ago by a man who goes by the name of Falco, following his lifelong vision. Over the years, the temples and the movement known as Damanhur have grown considerably.

 

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Temples of Damanhur: Origins

The temples of Damanhur commenced thanks to the visions of a young boy named Oberto Airaudi who described magnificent temples and a utopian society as part of a past life. His conviction was so strong that Oberto never forgot and set out to recreate his vision in adulthood. Oberto gathered a group of people who shared his vision of humanity and began the process of digging under a house he bought. 

This site was chosen because of its unique and powerful cosmic energy points located in the Valchiusella valley. Just as most members within the community of Damanhur nowadays, Oberto also uses and animal name - he calls himself Falco or Falcon. What makes this community different is that unlike many other spiritual movements that depend on the charisma of its leader, Damanhur does not have a true leader and Falco does not involve himself in decision-making. Rather, he is considered to be a visionary or spiritual adviser by the community.  

 

Temples of Damanhur: The Federation of Damanhur

The socially, politically, spiritually, economically and ecologically active followers of Damanhur are known as The Federation. Today, the community has worldwide offices and have over one thousand individuals who live in what they term as an Eco-Society. The Federation lives in small, but active groups known as Nucleo Communities and is focused upon the principles of ecological sustainability, ethics, kindness, social responsibility and spiritual awareness. A major component of the Damanhur ethos is living green and followers are involved with eco-conscious activities like solar farms and creating a seed bank. The community strives for complete self-sufficiency.  

 

Temples of Damanhur: The Underground Temples

Each temple acts as a focal point for specific meditation. The underground temples are comprised of nine underground temples and are otherworldly, filled with brightly painted murals, stained glass, sculpture, Egyptian motifs and strange symbols. The temples were so secret that the Italian Government did not realize they existed until they reached near completion. Once discovered, people were awestruck. Since there were no permits for such an undertaking, the government may have chosen to demolish the entire complex. But, instead, they were stunned.

 

The Blue Temple

Damanhur Temples
The premises comprises of a Blue Temple, which was vibrantly painted in Damanhurian mural and was the first temple of Damanhur. Today, it is used as a conduit for meditations on social matters. The entire floor of the temple, including the trap doorway, is covered in a mosaic that depicts The Star from the Tarot deck. Within their meditations, Federation elders, also known as Guides, sit on a throne while focusing on the large blue sphere embedded into the wall. 
The Hall of Water
Damanhur Temples
Another temple known as the Hall of Water is chalice-shaped and is dedicated to femininity and water. One of its chambers is awash in blue from the large blue stained glass cupola. This was created with the intent to give the visitor the feel of being underwater. The walls are covered in mysterious designs and slender columns that reach up to the ceiling. The Hall of Water also acts as a Damanhurian library containing ancient spiritual texts. 
The Hall of Earth
Damanhur Temples
The Hall of the Earth, another temple on the premises, represents masculinity, the planet earth and the Damanhurian concept of reincarnation. The layout is reminiscent of an Oracle site from classical antiquity and is covered in brightly painted murals that depict the Damanhurian story of Humankind. The Temple's brilliant stained glass includes four glass doors which represent humanity and its relationship with the Sun and the Moon.  
The Hall of Metals
Damanhur Temples
Another temple, the Hall of Metals is dedicated to the history of humankind. The Damanhurians believe that the different metals symbolize human history. Murals and stained glass represent the ages of human history and are separated into good and evil accomplishments. The Hall of Metals combines science, mythology, history, and metaphysics which aim to help explain the Damanhurian philosophy of history. 
The Labyrinth
Damanhur Temples
The Labyrinth is a multi-chambered hall that is undoubtedly whimsical. It is dedicated to Humanity. Its diverse forms of spiritual worship are displayed in a series of Tiffany-inspired stained glass windows. These windows further emphasize the Federation's belief in celebrating the diversity and the similarities of human culture. 
The Hall of Spheres
Damanhur Temples
Located on the premises is also the Hall of Spheres which is used to house nine crystal spheres. The hall is covered in mosaics and gold leaf. This hall is used by the Federation Guides as a means to communicate ideas and visions by way of meditation across the globe. 
The Hall of Mirrors
Damanhur Temples

Finally, there is the Hall of Mirrors which is an enormous underground space topped with a Tiffany glass cupola, which according to the Damanhur website is the largest in the world. This hall is dedicated to the sky, the air, and the light and has small recessed alters dedicated to the four elements. 

 

As incredible as all this sounds, perhaps the most amazing of all is that the temple complex is estimated to be only about 10% complete. Future plans call for an enormous cathedral, a theater and a library of sacred texts. The existing temples, meanwhile, also undergo occasional change since these temples are active conduits to the human spirit which is constantly developing and learning. 
 

Images: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

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