“Life is a beautiful magnificent thing, even to a jelly fish.”
Charlie Chaplin in Limelight (in answer to the question: “What is there to fight for?”)
In one of those forgotten, lost books you never expect to see again, I once read that somewhere in Notre-Dame-de-Paris there was an Ankh (the Egyptian symbol of Life, the Crux Ansata or cross with a loop), carved on one of the stair steps. The memory of this oddity laid quietly ignored in the dusty shelves of my mind until one day, for no apparent reason, it suddenly awoke and began to demand verification. And so, following a relatively short Google search, words from the mysterious Fulcanelli himself finally uncover something: that the abside of the great cathedrals, and of course, that of Notre-Dame, had been designed in the shape of an Ankh, always in the elliptical apse joined to the choir (Patrick Riviere’s Fulcanelli: His True Identity Revealed).
It seems that the notion of Universal Life embedded in all matter and represented in the crucible, a symbol of the human institution for which the building was designed, was thus imprinted into the heart of the building itself. Alas, a victory of secret wisdom of the Old Master Builders – the Gothic Architects… a genial bit revealed by Master Fulcanelli, the obscure man who died in 1933, in his 6th floor attic of 59 Rue Rochechouart…
We’ll close this entry with a quote from Vincent Bridges:
“Symbolic knowledge is locked within the architectural ornamentation of Notre-Dame and other gothic cathedrals. Understanding the symbology is the key to unlocking the secrets of the ages.”