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Marcus Allen

Your favorite holy sites?

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Marcus Allen    123

I do like the DT cathedral very much, and have toured some of the great churches in and around DT. Any ideas where I could view really awesome synagogs, mosques, non Christian temples? ( thinking of Hindu and Buddhist locations). Faith aside, I love seeing how an architect incorporates the tenants of a certain religion into the various places of worship. The structures don't necessarily have to be grand, just, memorable. ;)

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Subdude    1286

In Houston, there was the Byzantine Chapel, although the frescoes have now been removed.  To me that was one of the best "holy" sites in the city. 

 

Also check out Friends Meeting House designed by James Turrell,  Friends would disagree with it being categorized as a holy site, but it is awe-inspiring. 

bco_live_oak_house_2.jpg

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Witch King    10

In Houston, there was the Byzantine Chapel, although the frescoes have now been removed.  To me that was one of the best "holy" sites in the city. 

 

Also check out Friends Meeting House designed by James Turrell,  Friends would disagree with it being categorized as a holy site, but it is awe-inspiring. 

bco_live_oak_house_2.jpg

Quakers?

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august948    700

I do like the DT cathedral very much, and have toured some of the great churches in and around DT. Any ideas where I could view really awesome synagogs, mosques, non Christian temples? ( thinking of Hindu and Buddhist locations). Faith aside, I love seeing how an architect incorporates the tenants of a certain religion into the various places of worship. The structures don't necessarily have to be grand, just, memorable. ;)

 

There are quite a few Buddhist temples on the west side of town.

 

Jade Buddha Temple - 6969 Westbranch Drive

 

l.jpg

 

Teo Chew Temple - 10600 Turtlewood Ct.

 

l.jpg

 

Vietnamese Buddhist Center - 10002 Synott

 

l.jpg

 

There are a number of others scattered about the Houston area.

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Subdude    1286

Quakers?

 

Yes indeed.  

 

 

 

 

The BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Stafford is really an awesome place. 

 

Forgot about that one - it really is fantastic.  

 

I've been in the downtown Catholic cathedral once and it left me cold.  

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toadfroggy    3

Well, there's the Hare Krishna temple on 34th in Garden Oaks.  I'm not sure it has been completed, and I'm pretty sure the neighbors consider it an eyesore, but it's certainly memorable. 

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Marcus Allen    123

Thanks to everyone. My next two weekends are set! Born here, lived in LA for 20 yrs and now back to my hometown. In LA diversity was celebrated so the various (places of worship, meditation spaces, spiritual sanctuaries, etc. Holy sites sounds so pompous coming from me, but I didn't know how else to categorize what I was longing to view.) places were more visible or well known than here, which is a shame, because I feel HTown has a wonderfully diverse populace. Anyway, thanks to you all for the info. I will visit these soon. And yes, anyone know of a really elaborate Orthodox (Greek or Russian) Byzantine like cathedral I could visit? About the DT cathedral; like many, I enjoy the 3d like statues and the windows for the most part. How to make a sensational space which connotes Divinity mingling with humanity without it becoming too gaudy or too trite. That, I guess separates the masters from the dabblers of architecture. I personally enjoy detailed architecture, so yes, it is a bit cold to me as well. Too bad the builders didn't go out on a limb and combine many architectural styles to make a truly memorable cathedral.

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little frau    51

Skyspace viewings at the Friends Meeting House have been cancelled until further notice according to their web site.

 

Since I have friends in that area, I thought I'd take a look next time I'm over that way but guess not, until further notice that is.

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august948    700

 And yes, anyone know of a really elaborate Orthodox (Greek or Russian) Byzantine like cathedral I could visit?

 

I don't know if this qualifies or not, but St. Basil the Great Greek Orthadox Church built a new, larger sanctuary and courtyard a couple of years ago.  They do a lunch special on Thursdays to raise money.  I haven't been to that, but would guess you could talk someone there into giving you a tour.  Also they do a pretty good Greek festival in the spring.

 

1100 Eldridge Parkway

 

church_image01.jpg

 

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Marcus Allen    123

Thank you to all who contribute. I plan to visit both places this Thursday. Are there any amazing Mosques here in Houston? I took my niece to Europe last summer, and we visited the Great Mosque in Paris. All areas but the prayer room ( I am not Muslim) were open to us. They even encouraged us to take photos, especially of the interior gardens, which were spectacular. The docents, who were all women, explained so much of the architecture and art to us. A real breath of fresh air considering the picture we are painted with concerning extremism on the Islamic front.

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Naviguessor    1219

Byzantine Chap...oh wait...damn!

Ok. Chapel of St Basil - UNiversity of St. Thomas. Maybe that would've been my first choice anyway.

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mkultra25    482

Live Oak Friends

 

bco_live_oak_house_2.jpg

 

I never made it there before they cancelled all viewings until further notice, due to needed repairs. The Live Oak Friends website announcement regarding this was posted last September - anyone have any more recent status updates? 

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H-Town Man    1988

About the DT cathedral; like many, I enjoy the 3d like statues and the windows for the most part. How to make a sensational space which connotes Divinity mingling with humanity without it becoming too gaudy or too trite. That, I guess separates the masters from the dabblers of architecture. I personally enjoy detailed architecture, so yes, it is a bit cold to me as well. Too bad the builders didn't go out on a limb and combine many architectural styles to make a truly memorable cathedral.

 

I like detailed architecture too, and was at first disappointed when I saw the outside, but walking in I felt the place had a heightened intensity due to the lack of detail. The basilica form was left crisp, in its full power to focus the attention of large numbers of people, and the natural light was a pleasant contrast to many dark cathedrals. Nothing cluttered or messy here. What few statues there were held more attention due to there not being so many. It's a similar effect to what one sees in other minimalist designs, especially museum spaces which command solemnity due to their starkness, only with the special characteristics of the basilica form.

 

But then again, the outside remains disappointing, more because of the glossy material I think than anything else. If it were rough stone it might have a very different effect.

 

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Subdude    1286

To me, the downtown Catholic cathedral utterly failed to connote a sense of divinity or holiness.  On the other hand the Byzantine Chapel did, before the frescoes were removed.  It's hard to say how that can be communicated architecturally, although I think that effective use of light and darkness might be a part of it.  The Catholic cathedral struck me as too light and open.  

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H-Town Man    1988

To me, the downtown Catholic cathedral utterly failed to connote a sense of divinity or holiness. On the other hand the Byzantine Chapel did, before the frescoes were removed. It's hard to say how that can be communicated architecturally, although I think that effective use of light and darkness might be a part of it. The Catholic cathedral struck me as too light and open.

Was there anything you liked about it? Or was it all just utter failure?

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editor    671

To me, the downtown Catholic cathedral utterly failed to connote a sense of divinity or holiness.  On the other hand the Byzantine Chapel did, before the frescoes were removed.  It's hard to say how that can be communicated architecturally, although I think that effective use of light and darkness might be a part of it.  The Catholic cathedral struck me as too light and open.  

 

I understand what you're saying, even if it's hard to describe.  Much modern Catholic architecture has swung too far away from its roots toward the austere, as if trying to do penance for some centuries-old architectural faux pas.  

 

One of the newer RC cathedrals in the nation is the one in Los Angeles, and it really came out fantastic.  The whole cathedral campus is wonderful and welcoming and interesting and while it is modern and angular, it doesn't come off as cold or stark or Protestant in any way.  It manages to walk the line between traditional cathedral and modern architectural/cost considerations.

 

One thing I regret not doing when I lived in Houston was visiting more of its churches.  I was off the reservation spiritually back then, so the only thing I saw were the old missions down toward Corpus Christi.

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