Sunday, 27 May 2018

Square and Compasses

"For in God we live and move and have our being..." - Acts 17:28

When I was 9 years old, I got in trouble at school for drawing a "rude" picture on a piece of paper and passing it around the classroom. This is the "rude" picture :)



For those who have problem figuring out what the picture means: it is a stylised depiction of a couple having a sexual intercourse in a "missionary" position (a man on top). 

This was a time when I was just finding out that there is such a thing called "sex" and was finding it all very funny.

Anyway, time passed, the sex became less funny and more fun and I completely forgot about this incident...

Then recently, while I was looking for something on the internet, I came across a picture of the Masonic Square and Compasses symbol:


The Square and Compasses is the single most identifiable symbol of Freemasonry. This symbol is a mystery. No one knows where it came from or what it means.

Most Freemasons, when asked the meaning of their Square & Compasses logo, state:

"Both…are architect’s tools…to teach symbolic lessons…"

I had of course seen this symbol before and I generally accepted that the symbol is probably in some way related to the idea of the God being the Great architect of the world.

If you look at this picture you will see why:




You can see that the ancient Hebrews saw the universe as a stone built structure with the stone flat Earth as the base and the stone Heavenly dome as the roof. Inside of this structure was all there was, the life itself. 

Now this was very interesting. The origin of the Masons is deeply rooted in the religion of the First Temple. So they probably shared the same world view described in the above drawing. And if we look at the above picture the idea of God being the Great Architect starts making a lot of sense. Only a great architect could have built the stone universe...

That architect would have used the Compasses to draw the top of the universe, the great stone semi circular dome of Heavens. He would also have used the Square to draw the bottom of the universe, the great stone flat earth. 

And this is exactly how the Compasses and Square are positioned in the Masonic symbol: the Compasses at the top, representing the Heavens, the Square at the bottom, representing the Earth. 

It seams that at least some Masons shared this view. 

Albert Pike, in his "Morals & Dogma" says: "The Compass, as the Symbol of the Heavens…and the Square, as the Symbol of the Earth...". 

Albert Pike actually goes further to say that the Compass (Heaven) represents the spiritual portion of the double nature of Humanity…and the Square (Earth) represents the material, sensual, and baser portion of the double nature of Humanity." 

J. S. Ward states in his "Interpretation of Our Masonic Symbols" that "…the compasses stand for…the spiritual side of man, while the square appertains to the material world…"

This is linked to the Euclid’s 47th problem of “Squaring The Circle,” said to be the primary goal of the Masonic craft. 



Squaring the circle, however, does not in this case refer to a mathematical problem. It is a description of the the fact that man has both physical and spiritual nature.

Now the reason why man has both physical and spiritual natures is because we are all children of the father sky and mother earth.


Sky, because we can't touch it, but because it has direct influence on life, is perceived as spiritual. The word spirit comes from breath, air...
Earth, because we can touch it, and because we and everything else that is alive, lives and grows out of earth, is seen as material. The word matter comes from mother...

In Genesis, God forms "Adam", out of "the dust of the ground" and "breathed into his nostrils the breath of life" (Genesis 2:7). This is basically a description of the creation of life by Father Sky and Mother Earth...

This reminded me of a Serbian riddle

Question: Tall (high) father, wide mother
Answer: sky and earth

This riddle contains the ancient belief in Father Sky and Mother Earth which was preserved in Serbian tradition.

Father Sky and Mother Earth are at the core of the old European belief system.

In Serbian tradition the Father Sky and Mother Earth are known as:

Father Sky:

Dajbog - giving god
Djed - grandfather, male ancestor

Mother Earth:

Dajbaba - giving goddess
Baba - grandmother, female ancestor

It is the dynamic interplay between the Sky and the Earth, the intercourse between the Father Sky and Mother Earth, which creates all life.

Which brings me back to my primary school doodle:


A father (on top) and mother (on the bottom) creating life...Compass and the Square. Heaven (Sky) father and Earth mother creating life.

In English speaking countries, the Compass and the Square symbol has a capital letter G in the space between the Compass and the Square.



Among the most widely accepted interpretations are that: [G] stands for God, and is to remind Masons that God is at the center of Freemasonry. In this context it can also stand for Great Architect of the Universe (a reference to God). 

So there is one GOD who creates all. The first thing he created was chaos. He had to. He created everything :) Then he "separated" the chaos into the sky and earth. Sky and earth then created living nature. Living nature then created all living things including man.

This is interesting. God Begets One. One begets Two. Two beget Three. Three beget all living things.

Now where did I see this before?

I know. In Taoism.

The Tao begot one (wuji, chaos).
One begot two (taiji, Heaven and Earth, Yang and Yin).
Two begot three (man heaven earth, life).
And three begot the ten thousand things (All things).

And in Fibonacci sequence. 1, 1, 2, 3... I wrote about the Fibonacci sequence and it being at the core of Taoism in the post entitled "Fibonacci".

Fibonacci sequence describes Genesis, the creation of life, the materialisation of the divine, the squaring of the circle...

In case of Taoism behind everything is unknowable Tao. It is unknowable because it is beyond material universe (chaos) which is all we can ever really know. 
In case of Judeo Christianity behind everything is unknowable GOD. It is unknowable because it is beyond material universe (chaos) which is all we can ever really know.
In case of Science, behind everything is unknowable "something" that kicked off the Big Bang. It is unknowable because it is beyond material universe (chaos) which is all we can ever really know.

There is basically no difference between these three definitions of the beginning of the creation of life. They are all beliefs based on logical deduction that there must have been something or someone that created our universe (chaos) from which (or in which) sky and earth were formed (created) and which in turn created life and us, humans. But we can never have a proof that this belief is true or any way to see this something or someone. 

So from our point of view the only thing that really matters are the two things that directly create, maintain and destroy life: sky and earth. It is because of this that sky and earth were recognised as Father Sky and Mother Earth and were as such deified and venerated as God Father and Mother Goddess.

Sky father was often identified with the Sun. This is why Sky gods are often interchangeable with Sun gods. For instance in Slavic religion Dabog, the Sun god is also the giver of rain hence he is actually the Sky god. Dabog is imagined as a radiant youth who rides across the sky every day from east to west in golden chariots pulled by four white horses. 

There are very strong indications, based on archaeological and historical data, that the First Temple, the Temple of Solomon, the Temple Masons are trying to rebuild, was a solar temple, built on top of an ancient solar observatory, and built by the followers of a solar cult. More precisely the cult of Helios (El). Helios who was the old sun god imagined as a radiant youth driving across the sky from east to west in golden chariot pulled by four white horses...I wrote about this in my posts "Boaz and Jachin" and "Sun god from the first temple". The solar cult of the First Temple was only replaced by the lunar cult of the Second Temple after the return from Babylon. Not all jews agreed with this religious change. Some, like the Essenes, regarded the cult of the Second Temple as a heresy and dedicated themselves to the "rebuilding of the First Temple solar cult"... Now the God of the Jews, El, Helios, Sky Father, was the God of the Early Christians...

There are also very strong indications, based on ethnographic and archaeological evidence, that Virgin Mary is the Christianised Mother Earth. The old holy places related to the Mother Earth worship were converted to holy places dedicated to Virgin Mary (or the main Female Saint of the area). The old rituals performed to appease Mother Earth were transferred to Virgin Mary (or the main Female Saint of the area). I wrote about this in many posts, such as "Shepherd's chapels from Velebit", "Babje leto - Grandmother's summer"...

What does the intercourse between the Father Sky and Mother Earth produce? Life. Living nature including us humans...
What did the intercourse between God and Mary produce? Christ who is God who became Man. God materialised. 

So based on the above analogy, Christ is just a symbol. Symbol of life itself, symbol of nature. Life is materialised divine, god who became matter.  

Squaring (materialising) the circle (Devine, sun, sky, God) = creating life...

If Christ is life, living nature and we are part of life, living nature, then we are Christ. We truly live and move and have our being in Christ...
If Christ is life, living nature, god who became matter, then we are all god materialised. Just like the mystics the world over have been teaching for millennia.

I wonder how many masons and non masons are aware of all this?

What do you think? Does this make sense?

PS:

Chinese creator god Fuxi 伏羲 and mother goddess Nüwa 女娲 in the process of creating life. They are holding square and compasses. Astana (Xinjiang), Tang époque (618-907). 


What an incredible coincidence... :) 

11 comments:

  1. As always, an awesome post. Thank you for keeping these coming - I love that you are drawing the threads together of different european cultures past and present. It has helped me understand a lot.

    If you haven't listened to them yet, I think you might greatly enjoy the biblical lectures by Jordan Peterson.

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  2. The belief that Earth is inseminated by the Sun is very ancient.

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  3. If you have not, you should explore The Hiram Key trilogy by C. Knight and R. Lomas (both Masons)....The first book, The Hiram Key, and the third, Uriel's Machine will be of more interest I believe!

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  4. Honestly, a bit flakier and strained than some of your our conjectures.

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    1. Chinese creator god Fuxi 伏羲 and mother goddess Nüwa 女娲 in the process of creating life. They are holding square and compasses. Astana (Xinjiang), Tang époque (618-907)...

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  5. Interesting observations about the mason symbol, then it seemed to get off track into pantheistic zones. Upon closer look, I am pretty sure that Nuwa is holding a pair of shears (enlarged, you can see how the tapered blades end and the thinner handle begins. (This style was used in Europe too, cf. medieval shearing.) Still widely available for sewing (search 'Chinese thread nippers'). I don't think Fuxi is holding a square, either (there is some sort of container dangling from the L), but nice try.

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    1. These are indeed compasses. Compasses originally ended in sharp metal spikes or even blade like ends as they were used to cut into material, like wood or stone. The other tool is square. And for pantheistic remark, there is nothing pantheistic about what I said. You can call earth earth or Mother Earth and sky sky or Father sky. It does not change their essence or role in the creation of life...

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    2. https://www.museum.go.kr/site/eng/relic/represent/view?relicId=435

      "This painting was discovered at the Astana Graves, which was the main burial site for aristocrats of the Turpan region from the 3rd - 8th centuries. The two conjoined figures are Fuxi and Nuwa, a brother and sister who, according to a Chinese foundation myth, were the only survivors of a great flood. Charged with repopulating the world, Fuxi and Nuwa created vast numbers of clay figures, which they were able to bring to life with some divine assistance. The Turpan area was introduced to Chinese Han culture in its early history, so burial objects discovered in the region often display a strong Chinese influence. The iconic figures are outlined with clear brush strokes and colored with thick red and white pigments. They are depicted with human upper bodies, but their lower bodies are serpentine. They are holding a compass and a ruler (respectively), which are symbols related to the traditional Chinese understanding of the universe, in which Heaven is round and the Earth is square. Behind them are the sun, the moon, and various constellations, as a microcosm of the universe. The painting has several tiny holes along the edges, which are probably nail holes from when it was tacked onto a ceiling. The painting lacks detail, but the vivid colors and balanced composition make it a notable piece of art, while the subject matter makes it a valuable archeological artifact."

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  6. I'm surprised that the sun (top) and moon(?) (bottom) are identical, with no sign of the lunar phases, it reminds me of your 2 Suns post.

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  7. Dabog@Serbian: sky god
    Tlaloc@Aztec: sky storm god
    Raroc@Australia: sky storm god

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  8. I erred, Raroc is incorrect, sorry, I misremembered Rarog the Slavic fire falcon and confused it with Dirawong (below).

    From my notes:

    *Xya ~ sky ~ tian/Zion/thio(p)s(y)/chey(enne)/sha(mash)/she(ma) etc.

    Shalako@Zuni: sky/storm god dance harvest festival
    Shalakoh@Caucasus: traditional dance (Azeri, Georgian, Armenian)
    Shango@Yoruba: sky/storm god/orisha(spirit hero), wore tall hat with bowl at top
    Tlalloc@Aztec: sky/storm god
    Dabog/Dajbog@Serbian: sky/storm god
    Dirawong@Bundjalung(Austrl): 'Komodo Dragon' rain-associated spirit totem
    Dagon@Philistine: mer-man god, wore tall Pope's hat, proto-Ichthys figure(?)

    Regarding your primary school doodle... probably coincidental,
    but the father/upper "A" part could match Athir (Gaelic: father), while the mother/lower "V" part could represent the spread-birth femurs, and lower legs splayed out 45 degrees, represent "M" mother, or "B" Baba (in profile sideways).

    I wonder if the serpentine legs of the Chinese god couple could have portrayed a swirling dance.

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