Special Web feature

National Driller July 2005 e-Newsletter

In the 1920s, a small group of Europeans interested in collecting religious and sacred material began to assemble a special collection. They were interested in Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Judaism, Shinto, Baha'i Faith, Jainism, Confucianism, Taoism, Zoroastrianism, as well as other religions and indigenous belief systems. They traveled to Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. They visited well-known as well as obscure, remote and ancient sites, and they carefully collected and documented material from these sites, such as holy water, ritual water, well water, melted snow and ice, rain and mist, and soil samples.

In the 1920s, by asking and receiving permission from local authorities, it was possible to collect material of this type. In today's world, because of environmental, cultural and governmental restrictions, that sort of on-site collecting generally is limited or prohibited.

The collection now has been moved to the United States and an organization, TheSpecialCollection.org, has been formed to create awareness and respect for these sites. The organization supports itself by selling samples from the original collection to churches, synagogues, mosques, temples, religious schools and museums, as well as to individuals.

The Web site - www.TheSpecialCollection.org - provides a description of the locations visited and samples that are available from the collection.

Examples of samples available from the collection:

  • Water from the site where Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River (Yardenit, Israel)
  • Water sample from ancient well near the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (Jerusalem, Israel)
  • Water from the sacred well of Zamzam (Mecca, Saudi Arabia)
  • Water from the Chichen Itza sacred well (Chichen Itza, Mexico)
  • Rain/mist water from peak of Mount Taishan (Mount Taishan, China)
  • Water sample from the reflecting pool of the Taj Mahal (Agra, India)
  • Water from the courtyard pond of Todaiji Temple (Nara, Japan)
  • Water from ancient holy well on Croagh Patrick (Westport, Ireland)