Cultural Autism

I was thinking the other day about the significance of the temple guardian figures one finds at the entrances of eastern religious shrines and temples.  The guardian, I understand, is the symbolic protector of the sanctity of the sacred space; he stands as defender against essence or evil threatening contamination or dilution of the truth within.

For many, the temple (or church or other social or economic institution) embodies a culture with which they deeply identify.  So I got to wondering what would happen if that culture was compromised.  What would happen if our sacred cultural space(s) were invaded by a malevolence that convinced us the tenets we’ve always held to be irrefutable were in fact not only refutable but quite false; without merit of any sort?

Since so much of who we are, how we identify ourselves to ourselves and others is tied to these now discarded cultural tenets do we become ‘culturally autistic’-blank stare meeting blank stare as we pass on the street unable to relate in any way to our neighbors beyond basic physical functioning?

I’m really not too worried about this happening to us dolls as we’re pretty tightly united by our vulnerabilities.  Here in the playroom, we have managed to maintain our basic values even with a fairly steady influx of new and diverse members.  The rules we set for ourselves focus on maintaining a mutual respect for each other’s self-worth as well as a collective sense of strong group participation that leaves no one out.

So, I think we have pretty good control of the sanctity of our playroom space and I guess we probably don’t need a symbolic guardian figure although there has been some discussion about forming political parties.  Is two too many?

temple guardian3

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