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Article

Blending the Subjective and Objective Realms of Sacred Architecture at the Pantheon: Creating a Comparative Framework for Evaluating Transformative Experiences in Ritual Contexts

Department of Architecture & Engineering Design, Utah Valley University, Orem, UT 84058, USA
Academic Editor: Tammy Gaber
Religions 2022, 13(1), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel13010075
Received: 30 November 2021 / Accepted: 10 January 2022 / Published: 14 January 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Spaces: Designing for the Transcendental)
This paper seeks to create a comparative framework for evaluating transformative experiences for different types of ritual contexts found in sacred architecture by bridging the gap between the phenomenology of human experience and architecture’s built conditions. The methodology creates a framework for statistical analysis, whereby evidence of people’s actual (i.e., real, lived) “subjective” experiences can be evaluated against the “objective” architectural conditions. The comparative framework is put to the test by comparing the experiential and environmental conditions found at the Pantheon in Rome. Experiential data for the Pantheon is extracted from Julio Bermudez’s large survey database (N = 2872) of “extraordinary architectural experiences” for this study. This data is compared against “objective” graphical architecture analysis using Lindsay Jones’ “morphology of ritual-architectural priorities” with a specific focus on ritual contexts. The quantitative and qualitative data reveals that the Pantheon produces transformative experiences for visitors that are related to the expected outcomes of specific design features. The percentages from the “objective” and “subjective” analysis both rank the priorities of theatre, contemplation, and sanctuary in the same order. This study concludes that built environments possessing a higher presence and quality of “ritual-architectural priorities” are more likely to be perceived as sacred and produce transformative experiences. View Full-Text
Keywords: sacred space; aesthetic experience; ritual contexts; hermeneutics; Pantheon; Rome; phenomenology; architectural design; comparative framework; transformative environments; survey research sacred space; aesthetic experience; ritual contexts; hermeneutics; Pantheon; Rome; phenomenology; architectural design; comparative framework; transformative environments; survey research
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ro, B.R. Blending the Subjective and Objective Realms of Sacred Architecture at the Pantheon: Creating a Comparative Framework for Evaluating Transformative Experiences in Ritual Contexts. Religions 2022, 13, 75. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel13010075

AMA Style

Ro BR. Blending the Subjective and Objective Realms of Sacred Architecture at the Pantheon: Creating a Comparative Framework for Evaluating Transformative Experiences in Ritual Contexts. Religions. 2022; 13(1):75. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel13010075

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ro, Brandon Richard. 2022. "Blending the Subjective and Objective Realms of Sacred Architecture at the Pantheon: Creating a Comparative Framework for Evaluating Transformative Experiences in Ritual Contexts" Religions 13, no. 1: 75. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel13010075

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