Temenos [Greek τέμενος] refers to a piece of land set aside or cut off from everyday use and assigned as a special domain for the veneration of a temporal ruler or a god. It may also be a built structure as in a temple that has been consecrated for a sacred purpose, such as a place of sacrifice to a deity or of worship.
A temenos, in a narrow sense, is a Greek sanctuary that has been constructed in a specific location that has significance for a ruler or god to be venerated. The temenos dedicated to the chief of the gods at Olympia is called the temenos of Zeus. A temenos may be demarcated by boundary stones possibly erected as a colossal wall or rampart. It is frequently associated with a special tree, such as the Bodhi tree (Sri Maha Bodhi), under which Siddhartha Gautama sat and achieved enlightenment and which was to become the site of the Mahabodhi Temple of Buddhism. The temenos may, itself, take the form of a sacred grove of trees, such as Plato’s grove of Academeoutside of...
- Adams, L. D. (1990). The world of myth. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Burkert, W. (1985). Greek religion. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Eliade, M. (1958). Patterns in comparative religion. London: Sheed & Ward.Google Scholar
- Eliade, M. (1974). The myth of the eternal return. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
- Eliade, M. (1987). The sacred and the profane: The nature of religion. Orlando: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.Google Scholar
- Erich, N. (1989). Mystical man. In J. Campbell (Ed.), The mystic vision: Papers from the Eranos yearbooks. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
- Gray, M. (n.d.). Sacred sites: Places of peace and power. http://www.sacredsites.com
- Jung, C. G. (1968). Psychology and alchemy. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar