Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Cave of Heaven

Cennet Çökügü (Heaven)Image by Sheriff of Nothing via Flickr
Cennet translates to Heaven.  So I find it odd any cave would be named Cennet and that you need to descend over 400 steps to the bottom of a limestone pit to get there.  But that is exactly what we have with the Corycian Cave of Cennet in KizKalesi, Turkey.  Not to be confused with the Corycian Cave in Greece, btw.

Once you research a bit more, you'll find it's a very intriguing place. It's thought to be Arima , where Zeus imprisoned Typhon (Big bad guy from Percy Jackson Series, remember? Yeah and Homer mentioned something about him in the Iliad too).  This led to the locals from the Temple of Zeus at Olba to make human sacrifices at the nearby cave of Kanlidivane "to quiet the demons Typhon released".  Modern science chalks up the grumbling sounds coming from the cave as volcanic activity.  But of course, the legend is when the Byzantines put a chapel down there, they exorcised the demons.  Oh well, I guess they were wrong about the human sacrifice part.

There's a spring at the bottom of the cave, which made living there possible and perhaps lovely.  Maybe the name Heaven isn't so far from the truth, when it's hot as hell outside and you have a nice, cool cave filled with crystal clear water in your backyard.  The spring also made cultivation of saffron crocuses a viable commerical endeavor for years.  For Burnt Amber though, the spring is an important place for djinn.
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LTM said...

fascinating, love it, and it adds so much to reading your novel! Most excellent blog~

Carolyn Abiad said...

Did you notice the remains of the chapel just at the mouth of the cave?

Anonymous said...

I was delighted to see my picture and credit on your blog. Please feel free to use any of my other photos in the same way. I think I have some of Kizkalesi too!

Sheriff of Nothing.

Anonymous said...

Ha! I knew I did:

Help yourself.


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