The semiosis of sacred space
in Versus n. 125, Appearance Screens. Technologies, Imagination, Forms of Life between Semiotics and Aesthetics, pp.343-360
The structure of any religion is based on signs and meanings, i.e. intentions and recognitions, as well the production/consumption of messages showing collective identity and memory. Through the semiosis process, space is perceived as a representation or a manifestation of something else (like the spatial recognition of a hierophany). Believers perceive the heterogeneity and the sacralization of space, distinguishing it from the “profane”. This distinction produces meanings and transforms space into a spiritual and cultural heritage. This article argues the sacralization of space and its physical (geographical) and psychological (“mythopoietic”) factors. Following a theoretical perspective, the aims are a) to address the influence of geography over the sacred; b) to reveal the role of the resemantization and sacralization for the spatial organization of places; and c) to emphasize the genesis and dynamics of sacred space and its recreation in a collective psychology.