neality Profile picture
21 Nov, 13 tweets, 2 min read
THREAD: on temples made to be burned—

Every cathedral must contend with the fact that it will eventually perish at the hands of pyromaniacal apostates. Yet in their obsolescence, these structures reveal hidden functions
For some, the awesome and horrible conflagration is a tool of conversion, and chemical compounds encased in their pillars release fireworks, violet flames, voices and chiming explosives
And as they sigh, retiring, they write the face of God in the sky, in copper-green and cobalt-blue, in serpentine mist and smoke-polygons, in vertigo-inducing fiery rains where sparks resemble falling stars
Sometimes, these effects are weaponized. Flames whirl, hypnotic, and strangely cool—soporific incense is released. Rafters crack, engineered to sound like seductresses or laughing faeries. Embers shift colors, chameleonic, and trapped by their wonder, the arsonists perish inside
Sometimes, the crumbling edifice howls a summons, crying out for vengeance. Collapsing upon itself, it has become a forge, and crusaders will make their swords from its melted ornaments
But the forge need not be for weapons. Gods, some gods, wish only to serve their creations, to be a source of light and heat in the wilderness, to burn Promethean as civilization crashes and rises again
Anyways, a ten-thousand year bonfire is as worthy of pilgrimage as a building, no? Now the fire is a beacon, a lighthouse, a god incarnate—these things create ecologies, economies, cities are built surrounding the holy furnace
Maybe the temple floor snaps, revealing a volcanic foundation, and flooding the area with long-repressed Delphic vapors. The death of the aedes thus births a new prophecy, a portal into god's mind through the delirious air
Or maybe the desolation of the church is the beginning of its god; there was a sigil under the flagstones, and the fire is a calling, the fire can be seen by the dark brains that sail through outer space
Reinforcement with fireproof materials controls the structure of the ruins. They may form a symbol, a skeleton, a phalange pointing towards the sun; they may form trellises, ladders for the ash-spawn vines and flowers, a garden-upon-grave
One structure was designed with arching, cagelike struts, twisted and blackened but resilient to the blaze, over which flowed molten stained glass, until the edifice attained its final purpose, as a warped and harrowing greenhouse—billowing glass the oily green-brown of a bottle
Another shrine's roof had a secret canvas layer, which when set alight deployed, and a blimp was manifest. Many-colored and bright, it transported its priests and treasures to a haven away from the burning
Finally, there are the churches that are paper shredders. Trenches of oil lead to the closets where records are kept, incinerating confessions, rituals, and certificates, erasing the names of congregants to spare them from the mob

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with neality

neality Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!