For the first time in life we are going to build a house. My husband and I remodeled different houses in the past, but building from scratch is a new experience for both of us.
On Monday, May 5th at 9:30 am, we marked the beginning of the construction of our future home with a ceremony of laying the foundation stone or cornerstone for which we invited some friends, the architect, the builder and others involved in this project.
The day and time were chosen astrologically. The Moon was in Cancer, the sign most closely identified with the notion of home. Jupiter, the planet of expansion and ease, one of the “benefics” of the cosmos, is also in the same sign (July 26, 2013 – July 16, 2014). However the chosen time reveals the most important aspect of the symbolism of the moment: Jupiter was about to rise over the horizon.
The ritual of laying the cornerstone has origins in antiquity but has been regularly used in different cultures but mainly in religious and public buildings. Perhaps the most famous one was held on September 18, 1793 when George Washington, first president of the United States of America and a Freemason, laid the cornerstone at the Capitol building in Washington.
On the painting that immortalizes the event we can see that the three helpers who are wearing apron of the Freemasons are carrying the products that will be used in the ceremony: grain, wine and olive oil, representing the essential sustenance to life.
For our own ritual, besides the stone and these three products of Roman origin we added a white scallop that in the tradition of the Brazilian Orixás, symbolizes spiritual serenity.
The stone, scallop shell, rye, Porto wine and unfiltered olive oil were buried in the northeast corner of the lot. Our intention in choosing this corner is to unite North and East, the direction where the sun never is with the direction where it rises, darkness with light.
However, our main intention is to honor the moment with symbolism, pay tribute to our life together that has brought us to this project and also invoke the best energies for building a solid house and for peaceful future times to be lived in this home.