Sense of Place Rylan Hefley


The Ganges River

The Ganges River is a river located in Eastern India and is important to the Hindu religion because it is known as an extension of god. Washing in the river is known to causes the remission of sins and facilitates. When arriving at the river i instantly felt at ease, from the sounds of the boats crashing against the docks to the waves hitting the bank, the river was very peaceful. Even though the banks of the river are very polluted many people were still washing in the river to show how much they care for their god.

Temple located in Varanasi

Varanasi , the city of Shiva, is one of the most religious places in the Hindu religion. Located on the Ganges river, it has over two thousands temples and over half a million idols all dedicated to Shiva and his family. In Hindu legend it is said that Lord Shiva unleashed the Ganges from the knot of his hair from this city. When entering the city you are instantly surrounded by idols and shrines of their god Shiva. Every morning people wake up before the sunrise to bathe in the holy Ganges river located right next to the city.


The Holy Kaaba

Located in Western Saudi Arabia the city of Mecca is one of the most important sights. The most important sight in Mecca is the Kaaba, a mosque built around a black stone by Abraham. It was designated the holy city of Islam and is a place in which all Muslims should offer prays. Once a year in the month of Dhu'l-Hijja all Muslims who are able to must make a trip to Mecca to pray and walk around the mosque 7 times. When arriving in the city you are crowded by many Muslims who are there to pray. The city is full of many large buildings as well as the holy Kaaba that is located in the center of the city and is the most important part of the city.

Great Mosque

Located in the city of Mecca the Great Mosque is one of the biggest mosque in the world. Being able to hold more then 900,000 people the mosque surrounds the most holiest place to an Islam, the Kaaba. Covered with several prayer areas the mosque is a major part in the pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca. The mosque was first built in 638 ad to surround the Kaaba, the most holiest place to an Islam. When first arriving at the great mosque you see giant towers, towering over 300 feet. You then walk through a giant arch door that leads to the center courtyard where the Kaaba is located.


Western Wall

The Western Wall is one of the most holiest places for Jews. Built in the holy city of Jerusalem, the western wall is a limestone wall that was built to thank god. As well as being the last remaining relic of the second temple. Towering over 62 inches and over 1100 feet long the wall attracts many people yearly. The wall may not be that big but still is a popular and holy place for people to pray or pilgrimage to show their love.

Golden Dome

The Dome of the Rock is a shrine in Jerusalem that is known as the oldest extinct Islamic monument. Even thought the Dome was build by Islam the rock on which it covers is still holy to both Islams and Jews. This rock is known as the foundation stone, underneath the rock is the cavern known as the Well of Souls which is the holiest place to Jews. When entering the dome the room in which the rock is located is very small and roped off. When looking up to the roof the room turns into a gold due to the gold reflection off the roof.



Bethlehem was the place of God's only son Jesus' birth. As I knew growing up as a Christian Jesus was the son of Mary and Joseph who both had to make the journey to this holy city. This is also the city in which Jesus rose from the grave 3 days after being killed on a cross. Sitting in a valley Bethlehem is a very beautiful wide spaced city. Symbols of the Christianity religion still rest on top of many building, churches and towers. And still a resemblance to years past with limestone brick houses filling up almost the entire city.

A Church

Growing up a christian I spent countless hours in youth groups, service, bible study etc, all of these activities revolved around the church, in my case Prestonwood. The church is a really big part in the christian religion. It is where Christians pray, worship get married and even have funerals. Every church to the Christians is the house of God. When walking into a church you usually enter into a lobby area which then connects to the main service area or other parts of church including classrooms. In almost every church you will see bible versus written on the wall and in some churches even murals.



Lumbini is the birth place where Buddha was born. Lumbini is located in central Nepal and is considered the Mecca of every Buddhist. Lumbini is one of four holy site to Buddhist and is located on the rim of the Himalayan. The four holy sites are the place of birth, death, enlightenment, and first discourse. It is the place which should be visited and seen by a person of devotion and which should cause awareness. Instead of Lumbini be an actually city it is instead a region with a lot of cities in it.

Bodh Gaya

Bodh Gaya is a religious site and place of pilgrimage associated with the Mahabodhi Temple. Bodh Gaya is the place where Gautama Buddha attained unsurpassed, supreme Enlightenment. It is a giant shrine that is set to be the place of enlightenment which is the 3 holiest site to Buddhist, It is located in Gaya, India which is in the East part of India. It was then decided that this is location of the shrine of Bodh Gaya and is not considered a place that Buddhist should visit.


Created with images by snapclusion - "church" • kraigseder - "varanasi ghats india" • eviltomthai - "Lakshmana Temple" • Camera Eye - "Holly Ka'ba" • Arian Zwegers - "Istanbul, Blue Mosque" • kellinahandbasket - "Wailing Wall/ Western Wall" • Jacob Wodzyński - "Golden Dome, Jerusalem" • geralt - "cross sunset sunrise" • Stradablog - "Chruch" • taylorandayumi - "Lumbini" • manbartlett - "untitled image"

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