What knowledge do they hold, that we have forgotten?

holy-of-holies

“Holy of Holies” watercolour painted in situ. Sold; prints available

Malta is a tiny archipelago of islands in the middle of the Mediterranean sea between Sicily and Libya. I am originally British, and I have lived here since the mid- 1970’s. During this time I have been intrigued with painting the mysterious temple remains that cover Malta and the nearby island of Gozo. Older than the Pyramids of Egypt and the oldest man made standing structures in the world, these stones embody the mystery and energy of ancient man.

The Maltese Temples are shrouded in mystery. There is evidence of over 80 sites scattered over the two main islands although only 8 or so are still relatively intact. Why humans felt it necessary to put such enormous effort into cutting, dressing and moving huge blocks across the rocky landscape and then building ‘temples’ with them is open to much conjecture. From our modern standpoint we tend to assume that they were built to honour their Gods, Goddesses (many female statues have been found) with sacrifice and ritual, but very little real evidence of what kind of activities took place there exists. Some sites were used for burials at some stage ( the Hypogeum), but not all. We cannot know whether that was their original purpose or whether that was a later use for them. Some are oriented to precisely catch the sun’s rays at the Equinox (Mnajdra), some are in the form of a ‘Fat Lady Goddess’ with three or more apses, but some are not. Only one small area (Skorba Temple) shows any evidence of habitation. No weapons have been found either. Statuettes, other artefacts and the very shape of the Temples seem to point to a gynocentric society.

Theories abound, of course, from scientific and archaeological views to those who believe that they were extra- terrestrial landing stations, star portals, energy points to stabilise the whole planet and/or incubation chambers for visions and predictions.

It is a fact that whoever went to such extraordinary efforts must have had some very good reasons for doing so. It is not fanciful to believe that they relied entirely on the environment, the seasons and weather patterns to survive, and that somehow the Temples satisfied some belief system that would help their survival in some way too. With all our heavy lifting machines and precision tools it would be hard to replicate one of these structures, so what did those people know that we have forgotten? Were they able to use sound to change matter in order to move those heavy stones so easily? The Hypogeum in particular has remarkable sound properties – how did they do that, and why?

Today, the rampant greed and rape of our host is beginning to catch up with us – we are rapidly destroying and poisoning the very air that we breathe, the land we grow our crops in, and the weather patterns which affect the whole planet.
I cannot answer any questions about the Maltese Temples in words; all I KNOW is that when I paint in them I connect with something outside/inside, beyond myself. I know that other people can connect with those echoes and use them to take their own inner journeys and vision quests.

I know that my deepest feelings come from an overwhelming sense of oneness, not only with all sentient beings but with everything that is made from the same building blocks of stardust.
We are all one entity, on a very basic level, and we affect each other in ways that are only just beginning to be proven. Isn’t it about time we recognised and honoured that and began to treat each other, our environment and each other with proper respect and gratitude?

Whatever you choose to believe about these Temples, no-one really knows what the truth is. We can only see the evidence through our modern eyes. When we see a flat “altar” we add on priests and sacrifices, decorated with popular myths of wild orgies, huge flames and thunderbolts! Perhaps the truth was much more down to earth. Literally.

 

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About Jeni Caruana

Jeni was born in England and studied at Uxbridge, Hull and Harrow Art Colleges before settling in Malta in 1977. She subsequently worked as a graphic designer and followed a post-Diploma course at Malta College of Art. Jeni has held regular solo exhibitions of her works and participated in numerous joint, group and collective exhibitions in Malta and abroad, representing Malta in UK, USA, Sardinia, Rome, Tunisia, Libya and Norway. Paintings now hang in many public and private collections. --- Works cover a wide variety of subjects and media, from landscapes to Prehistoric Temples, sand to ceramics, watercolour and acrylics to wooden sculptures. They are always based on good drawing and keen observation and always started on location or from live models. Intense study of the human figure has resulted in her ability to capture fleeting glimpses of people in motion. Visually expressing the emotional effects of music on the senses, her ‘musician’ paintings are a favourite subject. --- Jeni has been teaching drawing and watercolour techniques to adults since 1995. She regularly runs courses and workshops in drawing and watercolour for adult beginners and improvers, specialised courses in life drawing, watercolour techniques, weekend workshops and painting outings and also art for self-expression, meditation and relaxation. --- For more information please contact; Studio Address: - “Dar Il-Mistrieh”, - 15, Old Church Street, - Manikata - MLH 5202