Let’s shed some ski... er, light on this!
“Snakes, why did it have to be snakes?” famous adventurer Indiana Jones once whined. That cowardly archaeologist feared snakes even more than my number one fear - spotting an Enderman during my evening stroll. Eek!
But getting back to Indy, he was WRONG because snakes are awesome! True, many people fear snakes, but lots of (better) people also love them. Some people even have snakes as pets, like corn snakes or ball pythons. Just don’t get Dr Jones one for his next birthday, unless you want a bullwhip to the face.
An awesome tribute to giant snakes comes from Argentinian Minecraft builder Bodha. He recently constructed the Snake Temple, a mysterious island with ancient buildings dedicated to the species. But the project initially started off as something completely different.
“The reason I wanted to build the snake temple was because of my niece, who has so much imagination that always inspires me with ideas.” Bodha explains. “She told me to make a snake so I decided to make it in the form of a statue.”
Well, the statue project became something far more ambitious. It grew into a whole island with marble-like pillars, dozens more statues, and pagoda-shaped buildings placed carefully among the island hills. For the latter, Bodha found inspiration in Chinese architecture, more precisely the Temple of Heaven from the Ming Dynasty. The rest is hiss-tory.
The mysterious place of reptilian worship was created, together with some intriguing background lore of how it came to be.
“The story of why the temple exists is that the civilization that once lived on the island shared it with giant snakes, and made a temple in their honour.” says Bodha. “Apparently at some point, Kujulaxuka the Wanderer tried to seize the land of this civilization, and was forced to retreat thanks to the saviors – the snakes.”
Sadly (or perhaps luckily, depending on who you ask) the giant snakes now seems to be gone. Or are they merely biding their time beneath the island, waiting for the right time to awake once again? No one knows, since all those who have dared venture to the island have gone missing, never to return. Promising!
If you don’t believe us, just check out the shipwreck close by. It’s basically the equivalent of the Brazilian snake island of Ilha da Queimada Grande!
Regardless, the maps architectural design makes the most of the island’s geographical terrain. It has clever composition in the balance between water, structures and plants. Looking back, Bodha can reflect on how this build came to be.
“Something I believe makes a construction stand out is innovation. Despite using common themes, you can always innovate [a build] in a certain way. Sometimes you come up with ideas that makes you go either ‘What am I thinking, this idea is not very good’ or ‘This is very rare’, and those ideas are the ones that fascinate me the most.”
As if the stars were aligned for this specific project to be created, Bodha discovered Minecraft in 2013 – according to the Chinese Zodiac System, that’s the year of the Water Snake.
"It was thanks to my cousin." Bodha explains. "He used to show me the game whenever I went to his house, and since I liked it a lot I eventually decided to download it myself."
Since then, Bodha has used the game as an outlet for his crazy ideas and projects, helping him get distracted from daily problems to instead focus on what’s fun. The Snake Temple is no exception to this. Despite having a clear idea from the start – that there would be snakes in it – the build emerged, developed and grew into something else entirely during its 24 hour creation.
“Do not compare yourself with anyone. Simply try things and learn from your mistakes, and join builders communities. It’s a very entertaining way to learn building together with other people with more or even less experience!”
I don’t know about you, but after reading that, I’ve definitely been bitten by the inspiration bug! Wait, hang on. That actually looks more like a snake bite?
Oh. Oh dear.