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Sacred Geometry
(Condensed Forum Discussion between DragonHawk and Shae The Fire Witch)

I received some symbols in meditation during my recent trip to Scotland. I feel they are Druid Symbols - or at least that is the tradition they have come to me from... Circle, Cross (+), Triangle, Square, X-shape. From the Pythagorean number Mysteries (which go back to the middle eastern Mystery traditions and probably back to the Magi) these symbols could represent the directions and or the elements...From Plato-Pythagorean mysteries, they could represent chemical elements... I know that somehow they represent Creator, Creation and possibly the Ages - but I wondered if anyone else had come across them in any other context? Certainly it would appear that the square and the triangle are pretty basic in Druidry Celtic Tradition and Western Christian Mystery traditions: they appeared in the ancient church at Glastonbury. If you put two equilateral triangles in a square you get the X shape. I cannot find reference to a circle or a cross in Druidry, but this is the Celtic Cross: is this a fusion of the two? Do these shapes appear in any other tradition? I am sure that i have heard others speak of similar symbols...but not known the relevance at the time: is this knowledge that is to be shared or is it knowledge that we must find our own answers too?

Now another symbol seems important too: Draw two lines representing the plus sign (over the axis of the directions) and from the bottom (south) draw a line to the right (east) at 45 degrees to meet the end of the line at the east position (forming a equilateral triangle south-center-east. Put a circle in the middle of the cross shape you first drew and draw a small line (-) just above halfway between the top of the circle and the north position (cutting the north south line at 90 degrees), so you get a figure like a Christian cross sat on the circle, then in the center of the west line (halfway from the edge of the circle to the west point) put in an X-shape so the center of the X crosses the line. Look familiar to anyone?

Shae The Fire Witch:
These symbols are the basic components of what they call Sacred Geometry. It is considered part of the Druid/Mage traditions. The symbols you have described are the basic symbols of Sacred Geometry, which in relation to CB's posts are tied to the scientific language he is discussing in his posts. I have included several links below to sites I have found to be helpful to me in understanding this concept.

www.intent.com/sg/ (sorry, this link no longer works - Dragonfly)



And from my own personal notes –

Sacred Geometry
Alone, all Sacred shapes have meaning, but when in union with other Sacred shapes, that meaning becomes two-fold, or three-fold, etc. Herein lie the very basics of each symbol alone, perhaps then allowing one to see more within seemingly mundane paintings, photographs, statues, buildings, and any of the other results of creative influence over our world.

The Triangle
Inherently linked to the number three, the triangle possesses much of the same symbolism and meaning as does the number. For Christians, it represents the Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Ghost), while for the Celts it represented the Universe. Most systems recognize it as a symbol of family (Father, Mother, and Child) or balance. For mystics, the triangle can also symbolize ley lines: Those channels of force found in most living things, including the Earth. The three sides are thus positive, negative, and neutral (the three sides together achieving the concept of balance). As long as these forces are in synch, they form a triangle which is not detectable. It is only where the forces are out of balance that manifestations of the energy appear. For ley lines, what you tap into depends upon where you are in the form (positive, negative, or neutral). Note also that "positive" here is not "good," nor is "negative" the same as "evil." These forces are more akin to magnetism. Regarding superstition, this symbol is why you must never walk under a ladder or any such structure that creates a triangle: To walk through it may disrupt the lines of force and bring about bad luck. In the ladder scenario, the ladder is positive, the wall negative, and the ground neutral -- all in perfect balance.

The Circle
The circle is roundly regarded as the single most powerful symbol of all. It is Infinity and the Universe; Alpha and Omega; Beginning and End; Creation and Destruction; Destiny, reincarnation, and Fortune. The circle stands for the sun and moon, the zodiac, power and protection, the crown of kings, and the tiara of popes (most often depicted as a halo). It is the only single-line diagram that magi use to mark the bounds of their sacred -- and thus safe -- space. In this way, bracelets and rings gain greater significance, especially when and where they are worn and with what inscribed on them. The circle can also represent the eye and, by extension, an omnipotent god. Divine Energy, it is said, always flows in a circular form, giving rise the concentric rings of the Heavens and Hell. Pagans use the circular form of a snake eating its own tail -- a symbol of the infinite depth of Wisdom later recast by the Church as the ultimate symbol of Evil.

The Cross
Long before its adoption by Christianity, the cross was a symbol of the four-fold world and its various measures: Earth, Air, Fire, Water; North, South, East, West; Birth, Life, Death, Afterlife. With its inherent link to the number four, the cross is also related to the swastika which, before its corruption by the Nazi party, was a powerful symbol of the Wheel of Fire, or energy in motion. To many mystics the cross represents sex differentiation, with the male (upright) and female (downright) forces emanating from a balanced point (horizontal). The Romans, specifically, used the cross to represent reproduction. To be put to death by crucifixion thus came to represent that the person being executed should never have been born in the first place.

The Swastika
Before its corruption by the Nazi party, the swastika was a powerful symbol for the four-fold measures of the world, as seen in the cross. The only real difference between the swastika and the cross is that the swastika represents the Wheel of Fire, or energy in motion. To the Hindus, the swastika is the sign of Pisces -- the sign later adopted by Christianity for Jesus, who was put to death on a cross. This is but one of many examples where world faiths borrow, one from the other. Unlike the Nazis, however, most cultures that so borrow at least perpetuate the sentiment of the original symbol. To the alchemists, the swastika represents the two principle energies that act in the world: Electrical (upright bar) and Magnetic (horizontal bar). These energies -- like all energies -- are dynamic and are thus represented as being in motion. Were the swastika to spin quickly enough, it would become a circle. One of the goals of the alchemists is to symbolically turn the swastika into a circle: To turn the divergent energies of the world into something truly infinite. Perhaps a lasting testament to the inherent evil of the Nazi party is that such a sacred symbol should forever now be taboo in the West. Instead of using the swastika, most modern alchemists and mystics will now employ either a simple cross or a cross defined with tiny dots where the swastika's arms would be.

The Diamond
The diamond is the lasting symbol of purity and incorruptibility, due to its form in nature as a stone that cuts all but cannot be cut itself. This interpretation, however, most likely came as a result of the "drawn" diamond, which represents two triangles joined at the base. The two triangles represent Man (downright) and the Universe (upright), or the Microcosm and the Macrocosm, emanating from God. The symbol reminds us that Man is within the Universe and the Universe is within Man; the goal is to unite the two such that they become inexorably linked -- one whole, which is to say, God. Adopted by mystics and alchemists as the symbol of achievement -- or perfection -- it came to represent what was believed to be the lifestyle necessary to achieve such a level of Unity: One that was both pure and uncorrupted. From there arose the notion that a stone with similar qualities must be the very physical embodiment of the drawn Diamond. The symbol reminds us that we must travel through the Tree of Life to become reunited with the Kether (the crown or God).

The Pentagram
When drawn correctly, the pentagram represents Man, arms and legs outstretched and head erect. This is the form of the five-pointed star within the pentagram. It is a square representing the four-fold world with a fifth point -- the Manas or spirit -- mid-way to Heaven. Manas is the godhead; the ultimate degree of consciousness; the goal of all magi. The pentagram is thus employed to draw the Manas from around the practitioner -- from the Cosmic and Mental planes. It also reminds us that the Manas comes from within us all; from within our minds and bodies. The five-pointed star has always been used to represent these concepts of Individual and Universal Manas and their relations to each of us. It is thus a very powerful symbol for Human potential. Five itself is linked to Man: Five fingers, five toes, five senses, five main appendages. This reminds us that we have something more than the four-fold world around us: A fifth; a quintessence; Manas. In terms of the physical world, the pentagram is again the four-fold world, plus a fifth: Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Ether (or Space). In the Tibetan system we find Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Awareness, linking the symbol again to human consciousness and potential. The pentagram may be the most recognized and potent of all sacred symbols; unfortunately, it is also the most misused. When turned with the Manas down, it represents human downfall, linked by some to Original Sin. In this sense, it has become a symbol of evil, which doesn't do justice to the true meaning behind the symbol. When Peter asked that he be crucified upside down, it was in deference to Jesus, whom he saw as rightfully positioned with his head "mid-way to Heaven." By inverting the symbol, Peter was admitting he had not yet progressed beyond the level of consciousness that kept him trapped in the four-fold world. Those who employ the inverse pentagram are thus admitting they lack greater spiritual insight and base their views largely on what the world around them describes. They are admitting to being material beings in a material world, an attribute often given to the Devil, leading to the adoption of the inverse pentagram by Satanists -- those concerned only with physical and material wealth, gain, and stimulation.

The Hexagram
The hexagram is the shape created naturally by bees in the hive. The symbology of bees thus becomes linked to that of the hexagram, and by extension, the number six and the Seal of Solomon (or Star of David). The hexagram -- and resultant star -- is the one of the most powerful mystic symbols. It represents the Sixth Principle: That of a consciousness united fully with the Manas or Universe. It is two triangles overlapping -- the balance of Man and Universe, each with its own triangle of balance. Most often the figure is drawn with one triangle white and the other black, to represent a perfect union of the Spiritual and Material, or the Macrocosm and Microcosm. This is the loss of the Individual within the Universal -- the ultimate goal of all Magi often thought of as "Oneness" with the universe. The "magic" of the sacred number seven -- representing complete release from the world, from consciousness, even from the Oneness of six -- comes only from the power of six.

Remember: Man is five, the Devil is six, and God is seven. Man must experience the physical to realize His potential within the Spiritual. Without the physical plane, the spiritual would have no meaning. For this reason, Christian mystics believe, God came to Earth and lived as a Man in Jesus.

The Cube
The cube is little more than a two-fold swastika: A spiritual square and a material square. A squared square, in other words. The cube also contains the symbolism of the number six, since it has six sides. It also represents the "four corners" of the world, or the World Age as defined by the two equinoxes and two solstices and the attendant constellations rising helically thereon. Our current World Age is the cusp between Pisces and Aquarius. To say it Biblically, the world (Pisces) is coming to an end (which is, of course, only a new beginning).

The Sphere
The sphere is a circle any way you look at it. It is the Universal circle, if you will: the True Divine Spirit. It symbolizes nothing more and nothing less than complete emancipation from the material/physical world and material/physical law. It is to be so far beyond the four-fold world as to be inconceivable by us now, locked as we are in the physical. It is to be so divorced from the material as to not know anything of such existence. Is it the Greater Oneness; Divinity; the Horizon of Eternity. It is God.

The Golden Ratio
(0),1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,34,55,89,144,233,377... The Golden Ratio of 1.618 is derived from the Fibonacci Sequence (above). The Fibonacci Sequence is found by starting with one. The next number is the sum of the two numbers that immediately preceded it: Starting with 1, 0 1=1, 1 1=2, 1 2=3, and so on. The Golden Ratio is found by dividing any number in the Fibonacci Sequence by the number preceding it. At first the ratio is not quite exact, but eventually it plateaus at 1.618: 5/3=1.666; 13/8=1.625; 89/55=1.618; 377/233=1.618... This number is not only significant in regard to the Fibonacci Sequence, however. When a rectangle with sides measuring lengths of successive numbers in the Fibonacci Sequence (233 and 144, for example) is divided to make a square, it creates a new rectangle with sides that have a ratio of 1.618, which can then be divided to make a new rectangle with sides in a ratio of 1.618... Connecting the dividing points then creates the Golden Spiral.

The Golden Spiral is found in everything from the arms of spiral galaxies to the pattern of leaves on a sunflower stem to the shape of a nautilus shell. It is even postulated to be the measure of the spiral in strands of DNA. In terms of sacred geometry, even buildings of great antiquity demonstrate the Golden Ratio. In the Great Pyramid, the shape of the King's Chamber is a Golden Rectangle. Some contend this to be coincidence -- a product of the natural stability of shapes that exhibit the Golden Ratio. That may satisfy some that the pyramid builders had no knowledge of the Golden Ratio, but it also denotes the inherent sacristy of the number, that it should be the best ratio for all structures, complex or otherwise. The Golden Ratio is truly the Macrocosm within the Microcosm; the universe in the shell of a snail.

pi=C/D Pi is the ratio between the circumference and diameter of a circle, where in the above equation C is the circle's circumference and D the diameter. It seems that all people with a written language, no matter at what point in history, had at least a fundamental knowledge of pi. Degrees of accuracy have changed over time, but little else about pi has. Pi can also be rendered as 22/7 or 377/120, but is most commonly considered 3.14. Making the number more mysterious is that no one has ever been able to locate a repeating pattern in the decimal sequence. Most decimals repeat a pattern eventually (8.2349574623879879879879, for example), but despite having taken pi out to literally hundreds and thousands of places, no pattern has emerged -- indeed, it is thought to be a truly infinite number. As with the Golden Ratio, with pi we can thus witness the Macrocosm in the Microcosm; the Infinite within the Finite. It also adds mathematical substance to the role of the circle as a symbol of Infinity.

Hope this helps. I don't have the author of the above piece. I have had it for years. Hope it helps.

Libraries are on this row
INDEX Page 1
(Divination & Dreams, Guides & Spirit Helpers)
INDEX Page 2
INDEX Page 3
(Main Section, Medicine Wheel, Native Languages & Nations, Symbology)
INDEX Page 4
(Myth & Lore)
INDEX Page 5
(Sacred Feminine & Masculine, Stones & Minerals)
INDEX Page 6
(Spiritual Development)
INDEX Page 7
(Totem Animals)
INDEX Page 8
(Tools & Crafts. Copyrights)

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