Ancient Pagan and Modern Christian Symbolism

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J. W. Bouton, 1884 - Christian art and symbolism - 147 pages

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Thoughtful minds have long seized upon the idea of an unseen power. Using fascinating ancient illustrations, Thomas Inman gently nudges his readers to the possibility of a wider meaning for many of ... Read full review

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p. 82 the six sided star

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Page 106 - Whatever crazy sorrow saith, No life that breathes with human breath Has ever truly long'd for death. " Tis life, whereof our nerves are scant, Oh life, not death, for which we pant ; More life, and fuller, that I want.
Page xi - Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them...
Page xvi - We gain infinitely more than we lose in abandoning belief in the reality of Divine Revelation. Whilst we retain pure and unimpaired the light of Christian Morality, we relinquish nothing but the debasing elements added to it by human superstition. We are no longer bound to believe a theology which outrages Reason and moral sense. We are freed from base anthropomorphic views of God and his government of the universe ; and from Jewish mythology we rise to higher conceptions of an infinitely wise and...
Page 111 - As civilization advanced, the gross symbols of creative power were cast aside, and priestly ingenuity was taxed to the utmost in inventing a crowd of less obvious emblems, which should represent the ancient ideas in a decorous manner. The old belief was retained, but in a mysterious or sublimated form. As symbols of the male, or active element in creation, the sun, light, fire, a torch, the phallus or lingam, an erect serpent, a tall straight tree, especially the palm or fir or pine, were adopted.
Page 3 - Fig. 12 is a figure of this kind. It is a copy of an original drawing made by a learned Hindu pundit, for Wm. Simpson, Esq., of London. It represents Brahma Supreme, who in the act of creation, made himself double, ie, male and female, as indicated by the crux ansata in the central part of the figure, which occupies...
Page 110 - Africa to stick up over the door of the house or tent, or put up nailed on a board in some other way, the generative organ of a cow, mare, or female camel, as a talisman to avert the influence of the evil eye. It is evident that the figure of this member was far more liable to degradation in form than that of the male, because...
Page 31 - THEY sin who tell us Love can die ; With life all other passions fly — All others are but vanity. In heaven ambition cannot dwell, Nor avarice in the vaults of hell ; Earthly these passions of the earth, They perish where they have their birth.
Page 50 - Isis carried into the new priesthood the former badges of their profession, the obligation to celibacy, the tonsure, and the surplice. The sacred image still moves in procession as when Juvenal laughed at it— vi. 530-"grege linigero circumdatus et grege calvo"escorted by the tonsured, surpliced train.
Page 111 - Equally useful for symbolism were a tall upright stone (menhir), a cone, a pyramid, a thumb or finger pointed straight, a mask, a rod, a trident, a narrow bottle or amphora, a bow, an arrow, a lance, a horse, a bull, a lion, and many other animals conspicuous for masculine power. As symbols of the female, the passive though fruitful element in creation, the crescent moon, the earth, darkness, water, and its emblem, a triangle with the apex downward, "the yoni...
Page vi - Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God: for every abomination to the LORD, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods.

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