Ground Zero, Sacred Territory This is a comparison paper on modern day sacred secular places versus mythological secular places in history. This report will summarize what elements mythical secular sites have in common. The report will explain how Ground Zero qualifies as a modern day secular site. The significance and functions of the twin towers before the attack will be addressed. Ground zero will be compared with the Areca Tree, noting differences in meaning, function, and common elements. Our modern day secular site is Ground Zero. On September 11, 2001; 19 al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked four jet airliners. At 8:45am. American Airlines flight 11 crashed into the north tower of the World Trade Center (WTC) and exploded. At 9:03am,
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They were trapped on and above the floors impacted. Of those 411 emergency workers died trying to save the lives of those injured in the attack. The damage was not limited to the collapse of the twin towers. Numerous buildings surrounding the World Trade Center were seriously damaged. The monetary costs of this attack are in the billions of dollars affecting millions of New York citizens and those around the nation. The tragic event that took thousands of lives and that has affected everyone alive today is not easily summarized.
Sacred places and the stories told about them give us a chance to see, and feel the presence of mythic truth in the midst of our perception of reality. Whether these places are actual sites that you may visit, or sites you only visit in your imagination they serve to teach and remind us of whom we are and how we ought to behave in our daily lives (Leonard & McClure, 2004). In order to better understand what makes a place sacred we must first identify some of the elements and characteristics that sacred places have in common.
According to Andrew Gulliford, in his analysis of Native American sites, there are nine categories that all sacred places fall in. They are sites associated with emergence and migration tales; sites of trails and pilgrimage routes; places essential to cultural survival; altars; vision quest sites; ceremonial dance sites; ancestral ruins; petro glyphs and pictographs; and burial or