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Damanhur: Temples Of Humankind [Hardcover]

Sylvia Duffangi


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Book Description

Nov. 1 2006
Nearly three decades ago, Italian spiritual leader Oberto Airaudi had a vision of sacred temples built inside a mountain near Turin. As artists, artisans, and builders excavated the equivalent of a five-story subterranean building, it remained a secret from even its closest neighbors. Twenty years after the project began, the Italian government received word of the burgeoning community and became suspicious. Threatened by a full-scale military invasion, Damanhur revealed itself to local officials and the world.

This handsome coffee-table book offers a guided tour of the village, whose stunning murals, sculpture, mosaics, and stained glass draw from all sacred traditions to celebrate universal spirituality. Merging ancient mystic customs and contemporary consciousness, intensive labor and visionary artistry, the story of this remarkable underground community appeals not only to spiritual seekers, but to artists and idealists from all disciplines.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 136 pages
  • Publisher: North Atlantic Books; 1 edition (Nov. 1 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1556435770
  • ISBN-13: 978-1556435775
  • Product Dimensions: 35.1 x 27.4 x 1.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 Kg
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #567,559 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"The Damanhur Temples are a masterwork of human invention, inspiration, and dedication. They are a monument testifying to the power of vision in a community of people dedicated to the search for higher consciousness and true spirituality."
—Ervin Laszlo, scientist, philosopher, Nobel prize candidate, and author of 70 books.

"Now is the time for the light of Damanhur to be seen by the world."
—Gwendolyn Grace

About the Author

Silvia Buffagni (aka Esperide Ananas) provided text for this collaborative book project. A writer, lecturer, and Damanhur’s Communications Director, she graduated in Spanish and English Literature at Milan University and later gained a master’s degree in Media Studies at New York University. Before joining the Federation of Damanhur in 1992, she worked for the European Parliament as the assistant to the Vice-President, and later as a communications consultant for Italian and international institutions. Esperide was actively involved in the press campaign to save the Temples when they came under attack from local government. For the last ten years she has been an International Ambassador for the Federation. She lives in Damanhur.

Alex Grey is the author of Sacred Mirrors, The Mission of Art and Transfiguration. His work has been exhibited worldwide. The Chapel of Sacred Mirrors (CoSM), a cultural center in New York City exhibits over fifty works of art by Alex Grey. Alex lives in New York with his wife, artist Allyson Grey, and their daughter, actress Zena Grey.

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Amazon.com: 4.9 out of 5 stars  14 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Deeply inspiring Dec 16 2007
By Jonathan Evatt - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Damanhur: The Temples of Humankind (DTOK) is first and foremost for people with an interest in the intentional community Damanhur (in Northern Italy, since the mid 1970's) and what they have achieved with the construction of The Temples of Humankind. Perhaps you have been there and want a way to to show other people not only what you saw but to show them in a way that almost astounds as much as being in The Temples astounded you. Perhaps you simply know about this place and would like to own and view a splendid production of photos and information on what has been created there. Or maybe you know someone who went there, in which case this book would make a great gift which I am sure they'd be happy to own (if they don't already have it!)

Yet having said that, DTOK is for more than just people who already know about Damanhur and these Temples. Anyone with an interest in art and creativity will most certainly marvel at the incredible creativity documented within DTOH. People with an interest in spirituality and human consciousness will likely find DTOH equally compelling. I am sure, that many who read this book will feel inspired to actually visit Damanhur and see them first-hand, and I couldn't recommend that more. So be warned, this might cost you more than just the price of Damanhur: The Temples of Humankind.

Having visited Damanhur for a month and spent many hours in The Temples I can say that this book does a wonderful job of accurately and beatifically presenting what is hidden in those otherwise normal looking mountains. In all honesty I think many of the images look even more splendid that the real thing when it comes to the actual detail of the artistic works, simply because photos (well composed ones) have a way of hiding the fact that some of these artistic works are in need of some repair and attention. I don't see this as a negative, but rather positive in that it enables the reader to gain a taste of the magnificence one can ultimately only experience by walking in these chambers and temples in person. What the book lacks in size and scale (the Temples are quite huge when you're actually there), it makes up for by capturing these artworks at their very best.

Enjoy this book, and if you feel moved to visit Damanhur and you have the means to do so, then go for it.

If this book interests you (and/or you enjoyed it) I think you'll also be pleased to know about:
Damanhur: The Story of the Extraordinary Italian Artistic And Spiritual Community, which gives a very thorough account of the Damanhur itself and the people living there (now around 1000 in total)
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A magnificant coffee table book! April 10 2007
By Dr. Patricia A. Barton - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
What a wonderful book this is! I am a great fan of New York artist Alex Grey's work and he and his friends have made a superb job of this large format hard back book which features marvelous glossy photos from Darmanhur, the artistic and spiritual community near Turin in Italy. It's a must have for your coffe table if you're interested in the power of spiritual vision, artistic expression and intentional communities.

I will treasure this book always. Thank you EBay for delivering it so promptly all the way to Australia!
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Feb. 23 2007
By Nicholas Kuebelbeck - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Alex grey brings his clarity to the task of drawing the publics eye onto an unbelievable society that has profound lessons to teach the rest of the world about opening up to the complete truth of who and what we are as sentient beings.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars :) Jan. 18 2007
By Squidsley - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book is absolutely gorgeous. It contains tons of really interesting information on the temples (not to mention brilliant photography work). Beautiful.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful work that would grace any personal, academic, or community library Religion & Spirituality reference collection Nov. 8 2008
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Temples are places of metaphysical symbolism, mystery and magic, icons and imagery, ancient places of hallowed traditions, and so much more. Enhanced with the poetry of Oberto Airaudi, deftly edited by Allyson Grey, and provided with an informative foreword by Alex Grey and an introduction by Rob Calef, "Damanhur: Temples Of Humankind" is a compilation of beautifully reproduced photographs embellished with a text by Esperide Ananas and showcases the diversity of temple structures which served the needs of men and women to worship their gods. Beginning with the brief two paragraph commentary 'Temples of Humankind', "Damanhur" is divided into twelve sections of images and text that range from 'The Birth of the Temples'; 'The Battle for the Temples'; 'The Secret Doors' and 'The Blue Temple'; to 'The Hall of Water'; 'The Hall of the Earth'; 'The Hall of Metals'; 'The Labyrinth'; 'The Hall of Spheres'; 'The Future of the Temples'; and 'Federation of Damanhur: Sharing the Magic, an Invitation'. Enhanced with an extensive appendix, Informed and informative, "Damanhur: Temples Of Humankind" is a beautiful work that would grace any personal, academic, or community library Religion & Spirituality reference collection or Metaphysical Studies supplemental reading list.

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