The Symbol of Scientology consists of the letter “S” interlaced with two triangles. According to Church of Scientology literature, each triangle represents three inseparably linked concepts.

The triangles are the “KRC” triangle, (Knowledge, Responsibility and Control) and the “ARC” (Affinity, Reality and Communication) triangles, representing concepts intrinsic to the dogma of Scientology.

The S, of course, stands for “Scientology.”

Related Symbols:

Rose Cross Lamen

See also: Scientology at Alternative Religions

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This bizarre looking symbol appeared one morning in 1991 on the lawns outside of England’s Barbury Castle. The Barbury crop circle is not so much a circle as a triangle (or two dimensional rendering of a tetrahedron, as has been suggested) with three circular symbols at each point. This symbol, which measures some 36,000 feet across at its widest point, has never been seen before; neither the meaning or origin of this symbol are known.

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A typical illustration of the Egyptian deity Kneph (soul-breath). Like the Greek pneuma, and the Hebrew Ruach, kneph represented the life-force. It was the breath of Kneph who brought both the gods and man to life.

In Alchemy, the kneph variously represented the holy spirit, the state of volatility (mercury), or the creative force.

In Freemasonry, the kneph was the cosmic egg, the state of potentiality.

In Aleister Crowley’s Thelemic symbolism, the kneph represents Hadit, the “fire in the heart of matter,” the upward-rising force of kundalini.


Masonic Kneph


Kneph in Alchemy

Related Symbols:
Sun DiskChnoubis
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Maori amulets are traditionally carved from whale-bone or nephrite (a jade-like stone), although modern copies in jadeite and cow-bone are common.  Some of the more popular motifs are illustrated below:

The images below are popular representations of mythical bird-headed beings from Maori mythology called Manaia. Manaia are spirit guardians and messengers of the gods, and are depicted in many forms, from large wood-carvings to small amulets.

This design is called Hei Matau, after traditional heirloom fish hooks. It is worn as an amulet of protection, especially on water. The hei matau (literally, ‘fish hook necklace’) and Manaia figures have some overlap and are often indistinguishable:

hei

The figures below are varieties of the koru, which represents the unfurling shoots of the koru, a vine native to New Zealand. The latter intertwined is called pikorua:

korukoru

These generally have meanings of renewal, interrelatedness, growth, and kinship. The pikorua is sometimes given as a friendship gift.

Related Symbols:

Inuksuk

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The particular eight-pointed star (or octogram) pictured here is unusual in that it has multiple meanings, depending on context. The original emblem of two overlapping squares, often with a circular ornament, is called a rub el hisb (Arabic, quarter-group), an ornament used to mark the end of passages in the Q’uran. This symbol, like all symbols related to Islam, is not official nor heavily symbolic.

An identical glyph serves as the emblem of the Melchizedek priesthood of the Church of Latter-Day Saints, who view it as a continuation of the priesthood of biblical patriarchs. The emblem is patterned after a similar glyph found in a medieval depiction of Melchizedek, but is of relatively recent usage in Mormonism. The star in this context would most likely have been a symbol of renewal and rebirth through baptism.

A mosaic illustration of Melchizedek with eight-pointed star

A Mormon commemorative badge

Decorated Roub al Hizb from the arms of Turkmenistan

Related Symbols:

Magen DavidBaha'i star

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In Brazilian Candomble and Umbanda religious practices, Pontos Riscados are sigils used in ritual to invoke the Orixas (gods). There are different riscados for each aspect of an Orixa.

These symbols are drawn on the ground during an invocation of an Orixa with colored chalks called pembes. The symbols bear a strong resemblance to the Goetic sigils used in Ritual magick, from which they are derived. They are related to the Veves of Vodoun and the Firmas of Palo. The emblem above is one of many belonging to Exu, the Orixa of the Crossroads.

Related Symbols:

Akua'ba

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An Akua’ba is a carved figure used by the African Ashanti tribe as a talisman to promote fertility and and to protect pregnant women.

A woman who hopes to become pregnant will keep such a blessed doll on her person, and dresses and cares for it as one would a real child.

Related Symbols:

Veve

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The Chi-wara headdress honors the mythical antelope who introduced agriculture to the Bamana people of Mali. An important ritual implement, the Chiwara headdress is worn in ritual dances, always in male/female pairs. The Chiwara symbolizes harmony between men and women, and is believed to promote the abundance of the Bamana’s staple millet crop.

Related symbols:

Adinkra

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Palo Myombe, Palo Monte Palo Myombe is traditional African religion from the Congo region (rather than Yoruban or Dahomeyan), blended with emphasis on aspects of spiritism and catholicism. Palo is practiced primarily in Brazil and Cuba, and is similar to Umbanda.

The Seven African powers In the Yoruban tradition that is parent to the Lukumi and Palo faiths, the Orishas are emissaries of God, ruling the forces of nature and the fortunes of mankind. The Seven African powers are the primary deities of this tradition.

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In the Rastafarian religion, the Lion of Judah is an emblem of Ras Tafari, otherwise known as former Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie. According to Rastafarian belief, Selassie was the Messiah, the second coming of Christ referenced in the Book of Revelation:

“the hair of whose head was like wool, whose feet were like unto burning brass.”

Taken from the heraldic symbol of the biblical Tribe of Judah (from which Selassie is believed to have descended), the lion represents to Rastafarians Selassie as the “King of Kings,” as the lion is King; representing the lineage of the King from the Tribes of Israel. The emblem was once worn by the Emperor as a signet.

The standard carried in the lion’s mouth is the flag of Ethiopia, the crown that of the Emperor.

 

Related Symbols:

Rastafarian star of David

Related Resources:

 

  • Rastafarianism Explore Rastafarianism, one of the least understood religions of the twentieth century.
  • Vodoun, the real Voodoo Vodoun, the traditional religion of Haiti, is one of the most misunderstood religions of all time. Learn more about this ancient ancestral tradition.
  • The Seven African powers In the Yoruban tradition that is parent to the Lukumi and Palo faiths, the Orishas are emissaries of God, ruling the forces of nature and the fortunes of mankind. The Seven African powers are the primary deities of this tradition.

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A variation of the oshe Shango, a symbolic double-bladed axe representing the divine weapon of the Yoruban Orisha Shango (Also spelled Chango, Xango).

Shango was once a Yoruban king, now the Orisha of thunder, drums, and dance.  He is one of the Seven African Powers, revered in Santeria, Candomble, and Palo.  Shango is syncretised with the catholic Saint Barbara in the Lukumi religion (Santeria)

Related Symbols:

Eleggua fetishMjolnir- Thor's hammer

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A fetish head representing Eleggua, the Santeria Orisha of doorways and crossroads. These effigies are made of items sacred to Eleggua, with cowries for facial features. They are most commonly placed behind or near doors for protection, or kept on altars to receive offerings (ebo) made to the Orisha.

To learn more about Eleggua: Eleggua

Eleggua Image Gallery

Pronunciation: Vayv or vay-vay • (noun)

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This seemingly ancient symbol is actually the logo of the German industrial band Einstürzende Neubauten. The emblem combines an ancient Toltec petroglyphic symbol of a man with the alchemical symbol of the sun.

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The marriage-knot or knot of Hercules, a strong knot created by two intertwined ropes, originated as a healing charm in ancient Egypt, but is best known for it’s use in ancient Greece and Rome as a protective amulet, most notably as a wedding symbol, incorporated into the protective girdles worn by brides, which were ceremonially untied by the new groom. This custom is the likely origin of the phrase “tying the knot.”

According to Roman lore, the knot symbolized the legendary fertility of the God Hercules; it probably relates to the legendary Girdle of Diana captured from the Amazon Queen Hippolyta. In this, the marriage-knot was probably a representation of the virginity of the bride.

The symbolism of the knot survived well beyond its religious use, and was a very common symbol in medieval and Renaissance love tokens.

Greek girdle, 3rd cent. BCE

Related Symbols:

Hexagram

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The Cherubim were originally the ancient protectors of the Mesopotamian Tree of Life. They were often depicted supporting the thrones of deities and kings.They are closely related to (and often identical to) the sphinx.

In the Judeo-Christian tradition, they are the four vast, winged creatures described in the visions of Ezekiel, each winged creature bearing four faces: a lion, a bull, eagle, and human head.

In later Christian tradition, the four Cherubim (tetramorphs) are associated with the four evangelists of the New Testament.

In ceremonial magic, the four kerubim are the living energy of the tetragrammaton, and rulers of the fixed signs of the zodiac. Kabbalistically, the Order of Cherubim correspond to the sphere of Chokmah.

The chubby baby angels we commonly refer to as “cherubs” are in fact putti, and are carry-overs from Roman paganism.


A Mesopotamian Kerub protecting the Tree of Life


A nineteenth century depiction of Cherubs

Related Symbols:

Knot of InannaTetramorph

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The Simurgh is an ancient, immortal Persian mythological beast similar to a griffin or Phoenix. It is most often described as having the head and foreparts of a dog, the wings and tail of a peacock, and a body covered with scales.

The Simurg is associated with the Tree of Life and present in many old tales of the creation. He is benevolent, protective guardian figure with healing powers.

In later times, he is depicted as a more typical phoenix-like creature.

Images of Simurgh

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 tanitThis symbol is found on many ancient stone carvings, and represents the Goddess Tanit.

Tanit was the Carthaginian and Phoenician Goddess of the moon. Tanit was the Patron of Carthage and the consort of the god Baal. She may have been related to the goddess Astarte/Ishtar.

Bulla showing symbol of Tanit
Bulla amulet depicting Tanit

 

 

_88_Tanit_Stone
Tanit on a stele with wands and celestial symbols

 

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This figure was known to the Assyrians as Kullulû, meaning “fish man.” The kullulu was a guardian figure, a dweller of the sacred Absu, the watery underground domain of the God Ea. Figures of the fish-man were often concealed in the construction of buildings to serve as protective charms.

From about the fourth century, the figure was associated (probably erroneously) with the god Dagan (meaning “grain”), most commonly known by his Hebrew name, Dagon. Dagan was a vegetation god, the father of the god Baal, the mythological creator of the plow. Dagon is mentioned several times in the Hebrew scriptures, where he is associated with the Philistines. It is to Dagon’s temple that the Ark of the Covenant is taken after being captured from the Hebrews; the next morning, they discover the statue of the god lying on the floor, sans head and hands.

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A common symbol of the ancient Assyrian/Mesopotamian Sun God Shamash. It is often referred to as the “Seal of Shamash,” and appears near images of the God, or to represent his presence when worn by Kings or in inscriptions.

The Seal of Shamash is a typical solar symbol, and probably represents the Sun Wheel, or solar calendar, much like the Celtic Cross or the Pueblo Zia. The four arms most likely represent the solstices and equinoxes, which were extremely important calendar days in ancient agrarian cultures.


Image of Shamash- Click for Gallery

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A symbol of the Mesopotamian Goddess Ishtar (Anath, Astarte, Inanna). The eight points represent the movements of the planet Venus associated with this Goddess, and the eight gates of the city of Babylon.


Ishtar

Related Symbols:

Sign of TanitKnot of Inanna

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The Knot of Inanna is a stylized bundle of reeds, an emblem of the Babylonian goddess Inanna.

This symbol was early written form of the name of the goddess, whose name was composed of two characters, the post and the ring of rushes..

It is related to the tyet knot of Isis. As a symbol of divine authority, it is the ancestor of the crozier, a staff carried by Catholic bishops.


Inanna with the ringposts

Related Symbols:

Knot of Inanna

 

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