Monday, May 16, 2011


Beginning with the last century, the word symbol began to assume a wider
significance and to lose its original Hellenistic or Christian meaning. For
example, in modern literature, Symbolism appeared as a reaction to the totally
representative art of the Parnassians. Here the symbol is conceived as the
expression of the intimate relationship existing between two objects, in which
the one that belongs to the physical world is supposed to evoke that which
belongs to the moral world and so reach the deepest layers of the human soul.
This is how people compared the poetry of the Symbolists to music, in which the
rhythm and tones generate feelings and emotions that escape analysis.
It is clear that in this idea the symbol is undetstood as a sign created by man to
help the communication of his ideas, impressions and messages — in short,
everything, however refined, that is situated on the human plane. This
conception leaves a great deal of freedom for the creation and interpretation of
individual symbols.
In short, such a creation is wholly the product of the underdeveloped and
unbalanced human Personality, and consequently symbols of this kind, along
with the symbolism to which they give birth, have only relative value. The fact
that they are accepted by large sections of humanity, all belonging to the same
civilization, is due to a certain uniformity in the deformation of their Personality
—a uniformity that is a reflection of their education and upbringing. It also often
happens that this deformation is voluntary due to the hypnotic effect of Fashion
— especially in weak natures that wish to appear strong. This usually originates
in a fear of being 'outmoded'. This fear can become an obsession that leads to
'avant garde' activities of every sort —in Art, as elsewhere.
In the esoteric sense, Symbols are always revealed, and their deeper meaning
is precise and cannot be subject to free interpretation, since, whether expressed
in human words, diagrams, or works of Art, they express objective truths that
have been reached in a higher state of consciousness. Therefore a symbol that is
of value esoterically speaking could be partly or completely understood,
depending on the level of consciousness reached by the one who tries to
understand its meaning. But the measure to which it is understood will not
change its general meaning, which will remain the same whatever the level of

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