Memorial at the Temple.

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Memorial at the Temple.

Postby HeartOfJuly » Sat Jul 30, 2011 11:44 am

Greetings all,

This is my first post to the forums but Rites of Passage will be my 6th year on the playa. I have been witness to many ceremonies, celebrations and extraordinary displays. I have always appreciated the Temple and added to it's energy with my own wishes and intentions but before this year I have not felt as strong of an attachment as I do this year.

My father died in December. Suddenly, an hour before I was to leave to visit him. The story, as with any parent, is long. He always enjoyed hearing stories of Burning Man. He would get this longing look in his eyes and I always thought there was a part of him that wished he had the able body and health to attend. Well, scootch forward 7 months and here I am. Still in grief. With a pound of ashes and an armful of items from his altar, that need to go home.

Black Rock City is on the same Longitudinal line as a very sacred place to my father. MetaTantay was commune of people in Carlin, NV following the teachings of a Navajo/ Hopi shaman named Rolling Thunder. This is where I was conceived and I had intended to take his ashes there. I found out last night that Black Rock City and Carlin are on the exact same line...350 miles apart. I was stunned when I saw that on google earth. The land where MetaTantay was, is privately owned and I am unsure if I would be able to find it/ be allowed to do ceremony there. Black Rock City is my home. I know I am welcome here.

So, I pose this question. I know that people have done memorials in the past at the Temple. I have heard rumor that it was once a mausoleum for a son of one of the Temple designers ( Temple of Tears? ) and I want to do my fathers memorial at the Temple this year and I am unsure as to whether there are rules in regards to ashes, altars and the such left at the Temple. I have seen amazing things there. But I can honestly say I have never had cause to seek out information about what is permitted. I certainly don't want to bring these important things to the playa, only to be told I am unable to pursue his memorial.

I truly appreciate any information and I thank you for taking the time to read this post.
"May those who love us, love us. And for those who don't love us, may God turn their hearts. And if he can not turn their hearts, may he turn their ankles, so we may know them by their limping."

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Re: Memorial at the Temple.

Postby Elderberry » Sat Jul 30, 2011 2:44 pm

People leave lots of stuff at the Temple, as I'm sure you know. I doubt there are any restriction on ashes, everything including the temple will be reduced to ashes on the final day. Just don't put them in a metal box.
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Re: Memorial at the Temple.

Postby trilobyte » Sat Jul 30, 2011 9:43 pm

I'm sorry for your loss. When you get to the playa and get the opportunity to make your way out to the temple for the first time, seek out one of the Temple Guardians (scheduled in shifts, they watch over the temple throughout the course of the week). They should be able to help you work out the details.

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Re: Memorial at the Temple.

Postby ygmir » Sat Jul 30, 2011 9:45 pm

if you need a Nordic Pagan type ceremony, maybe we can link up, and make that happen.

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Re: Memorial at the Temple.

Postby HeartOfJuly » Sat Jul 30, 2011 10:20 pm

Thank you for that. I remember hearing the term Temple Guardian but never really registering it as a physical person watching over the Temple and I will do just that. It makes sense with how many people use the space that there are people to check in with.
"May those who love us, love us. And for those who don't love us, may God turn their hearts. And if he can not turn their hearts, may he turn their ankles, so we may know them by their limping."

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Re: Memorial at the Temple.

Postby oneeyeddick » Sat Jul 30, 2011 10:33 pm

If someone burned thier cat's body out there last year there shouldn't be a problem with a little ash.
We have an obligation to make space for everyone, we have no obligation to make that space pleasant.

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Re: Memorial at the Temple.

Postby DhammaSeeker » Tue Aug 02, 2011 12:27 pm


Temple Guardians are only on site officially from 6 PM to 6 AM, so if you're looking around during the day it's unlikely that you'll find one. You can identify Guardians (sometimes) by the bandana somewhere on their person. You can view the design of the 2011 bandana here.

All that being said, you are pretty much welcome to do whatever you like in the way of a memorial for your father at the Temple. Open flames and candles are usually prohibited to prevent premature ignition of the structure, but I was witness to a beautiful memorial last year where the family had some oil lanterns with glass and metal enclosures and kept them a safe distance from the structure walls. If you intend to leave items to be burned with the Temple, please make sure they are burnable or they may be disposed of before the burn by the crew that will be removing the stained glass and chandeliers and other non-burnable elements of the Temple design.


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Re: Memorial at the Temple.

Postby Waterwings » Tue Aug 02, 2011 1:33 pm

I know of people who have personally brought ashes to the temple. Don't think there would be any issues. Love to you. And big ((HUGS))
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Re: Memorial at the Temple.

Postby shroom » Tue Aug 02, 2011 1:42 pm

I understand your loss! I lost my father 10 years ago and in the past 3 years I've lost a cousin, 2 grandparents and an uncle. I planned on bringing photos of all of them last year to leave in the temple but forgot. I wrote each of their names on different areas of the temple walls and notes to them. The other messages, photos, clothing, etc were beautiful and left me in tears. I think you could find a place for your fathers ashes and it would be fine.
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