25/11/2005

Holy Sepulchre - Catholicon after restoration

On the floor under the cupola of the present 'Catholicon' is a reddish marble hemisphere known as the Omphalos, or compass, which has been regarded spiritually as being the center of the world. Cf. Psalm 74:12 and Ezekiel 5:5: "For God is my King of old, who works salvation in the middle of the earth . . . This is Jerusalem, which I have placed in the middle of the nations." (In the original Jewish story, however, the center of the world was Mount Moriah, and later in Islam it is located at the Kaaba in Mecca.)

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