What is a Garden without Water

Water is one of the four classic elements along with air, fire and earth. It can be represented in the form of fountains, pools, ponds and a variety of waterfeatures. We all enjoy swimming pools, but not everyone wants them to cool off in the summer or to swim.  From a spiritual standpoint, a functional…
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Garden Statuary

Statuary historically was used to honor persons, animals, Gods, deities and other mythical creatures out of carved stone. Angels, Mother Mary and Buddha are among the most popular of garden statuary. The embodiment of what the statue symbolizes is the purpose for its reverence and use in the garden. Thus, an angel may represent protection or that of a…
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Garden Portals

Distinct areas in a garden can be designed as a powerful vortex to draw in energy, creating a sacred space or as a portal through which one may connect with the divine. Below is a space that balances the 5 elements of Feng Shui (fire, water, earth, wood and metal), but has as its theme,…
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Sacred Geometry as a Design Principle

Sacred geometry has been used in what is sometimes called sacred architecture because of the use of the Golden Mean and Phi proportions seen throughout nature. Mandalas are quite useful for a garden setting because they are two dimensional for the most part. This Yantra to the left represents the spiritual path and the ascension…
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The Element Earth as a Garden Anchor

Recognition of earth as one of the four classic elements in the context of garden design would seem almost obvious in the fact that all gardens are inherently outside and already "of the earth". Hence, all gardens are earthly by the nature of their physical proximity to the ground. Earth can be seen as the…
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PASSAGEWAYS

PASSAGEWAYS   Garden entrances are not just a sign that tells you where to enter, they can also symbolize passages or gateways from one state of mind to another. This Japanese Torii symbolizes leaving the outer mundane world and transitioning to the inner world having a more spiritual realm.       This covered walkway…
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Fire as a Garden Element

Fire is one of the four classic elements in addition to water, earth and air. In this picture to the left, the fire pit represents fire, the stone patio and boulders represent earth, the spa represents the water element while air can be either the ambient breeze, sound or the oxygen that feeds the fire.…
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Courtyards as Sacred Space

Courtyards remind us of the town square where everyone could get together and connect -- and to feel a part of the greater community. A private courtyard in someone's home evokes the same feelings, yet is more private and secure to the degree that it is walled off. This courtyard features the central fountain designed in…
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Garden Ceremonies and Ritual

Ceremonies and ritual Nature can provide a backyard wherever it is conducive for the purpose and activity. Here Medicine woman Sakina Blue Star is conducting a ceremony in a sacred circle gathering. Wherever you have earth and sky, you can perform a ceremony. Formally designed spaces in a garden make ceremonies a special purpose type…
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Buddhas as Statuary

Buddhas are perhaps the most popular statue used in Asian gardens for his image represents awakening. Not all Buddha statues are representations of the original Buddha however. They may be standing, but most often are in a seated meditation position. They almost always are shown with a hand gesture or mudra which is a symbol of…
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