Monday, December 17, 2012

Project Pyramid/Proyecto Pirámide

Pyramid power!

At long last I have embarked on a waiting project to implement a vision on a particularly energetic part of the land here in the sacred valley of Vilcabamba. This land was dedicated in 2009 as a site where a place of solitude and tranquility, such as a temple might emerge and hopes then were that word would spread and the sangha would converge to manifest whatever form such a concept might take. But, it seems that was a bit fanciful and a bit hopeful for its time and while a local friend seems engaged and the founder of the local Buddhist centre supportive nothing really happened except perhaps the esoterical spiritual development of the space. Over the past 3 years it became evident there needed to be a catalyst to get things moving, develop the concept and move it forward, that catalyst it seems was me. There is a cabana on the site, a little bamboo, thatch covered room that has long been destined to become a home for the cuidador, the guardian of the site and keeper of the noble silence (and other odd-jobs). The cabana has needed its roof re-thatching (which we completed in September, the interior renovating and generally becoming a proper little dwelling for some time and this too is happening....with the same catalyst. 

Last year during a summer visit, I had the good fortune to meet Rebecca Tozer, an experienced pyramid-builder and person very sensitive to the energetics of the land. Rebecca and her partner James became my tenants, then, when we realised we would be spending more than just a visit in Vilca this year, they built me a casita (a guest house) on the land (see posts below) and so are now my neighbors. Hearing my thoughts for the land, we considered together that a pyramid on the site might work to help channel the energies emanating from the holy Mt. Mandango where we sit on its north-eastern flank and thus provide a powerful place to practice activities like mediation, yoga, chanting, gonging and other practices that develop the human spirit. 

Three weeks ago, using an onyx pendulum Rebecca and I located a highly energetic centre at the site. This will become the center of the pyramid floor, directly below the apex, the most powerful focus of energy and where once stood a majestic old fiqui tree that died of old age 7years ago.

The old fique tree circa 1995(?) where today the apex Pyramid was found....the tree died of old age in 2002.
The before picture

The apex

The structure is  9m X 9m at the base and stand nearly 6m at the apex. The floor will be a platform of beaten earth supported by an adobe wall raised about a metre off the ground. The posts will be bamboo and in time the roof panels will be thatched, we will use all natural materials. We aspire to complete the floor and then get the corner posts and frame up in time for transition ceremonies on 21 December. As one of three venues, the Mandango Pyramid is already booked through the 21st and 22nd of December for meditative and transition practices and it is hoped that local meditators, yoga instructors and practitioners will recognize the benefits of the Pyramid for their use.

We emphasize that this is a project for the community and have had some great help from architects, builders, people with pyramid building experience, our neighbour gave us access to any bamboo we needed and James (my friend/neighbour/tenant/collborateur) has been right there with me throughout, a much appreciated support.
Robert getting the corners square to the compass
Pete up with Don Luis getting the angles right

Guadua larga, James directing traffic
Victor  Morales (left), Jose (Cariamanga) and Don Luis Silvario
11 December: An emotional day, the day before, a Monday morning I was ready to go full out with only 2 working weeks left to meet our deadline, only 1 out of 6 workers turned up. What happened I still am not sure but today they all appeared, mumbling apologetic with various excuses...never mind. We got on with the show and by days' end the earth inside the platform was levelled and was exactly the right amount. This will be topped off using a combination of golden adobe earth and sand. Today we raised a corner post a 10m long bamboo (guadua), painstakingly trying to ensure the all important angles are accurately respected....bamboo has to be cut as the moon is waning, starting 3 days after full moon. I am told this is when the bamboo is driest and without so many insectos in the wood....corresponding I guess to tree sap which also rises and falls with the moon. Today for the first time I got a sense of what I was building and the size of the pyramid and its going to be big and stunning! I was moved by the sight and can't wait for tomorrow when we hope all 4 posts will go up. I have a great crew led by Don Luis Silvario who, at 68 worked on my own house and this year at 78 helped build our casita amarillo and now is rising to the challenge of building this pyramid.

Four corner posts up!

12 December: 12/12/12 at 12:12:12 we sat underneath the apex of the pyramid, the four posts up, the basics of the frame completed. The significance of the time and date...unknown. The significance of the moment...stillness and profound quiet. The pyramid power felt for the first time.

From the beginning, Pyramid progress!
!!Thatching to follow!!

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