Pentagram

“No, I am not a Satanist?!?”

pentagrambigThis might be the most misunderstood symbol in the world.  People have been associating the Pentagram or the pentacle with worshiping Satan and the darker aspects of religion for years.  Many of us grew up with the inverted pentagram being used in horror movies, with the pentagram being connected to Satan worship whenever it was mentione din church or on the news and with people that thought it was cool use this symbol to promote hate and other negative concepts.  Let us get some things out of the way:

  • The Pentagram as a symbol, both religious ans secular, has been around for a long time.
  • The pentagram has been used in multiple religions including Christianity over the years
  • Pentagrams ARE NOT evil symbols, repeat, get that out of your head, PENTAGRAMS ARE NOT EVIL!

History

The Pentagram first makes its appearance in Mesopotamia around 3000 BCE.  In the hieroglyphics of those people the pentagram is directional, or maybe related to a geographic preposition (angle, corner, nook, etc) or it can be used to represent five of the planets (Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn).  It is also seen in the symbolism of the Pythagoreans.  These very mathematical people saw the pentagram as perfection and use dit in their writing and of course to express perfection in their religious ceremonies.  The Chinese called it Wu Xing.  So this symbol was used all around the world for years before there were any thoughts of the negative connotation that the pentagram has today.

In religious symbolism, the pentagram has made many appearances as well:

  • pentagramIn Christianity, the pentagram was used to describe the five senses, the five wounds of Christ and in Arthurian legends, the pentagram was inscribed on the shield of Sir Gawain.
  • Mormonism has been using the pentagram on their architecture since 1846 when it was put on a temple of theirs in Nauvoo Illinois.
  • Neopagans have been using the pentagram as their primary religious symbol since the 19th century.  With the rise of some neopagan faiths during the 1960s the pentagram became hugely known and, unfortunately, much maligned.
  • Aleister Crowley used the pentagram in his system of magic.
  • Satanism has used the symbol but they choose to use it as a symbol of rebellion, not as a symbol of hate or evil.  This was used primarily by the Anton LaYey system of Satanism.

Obviously, the purity of the symbol, the usefulness of the 5 points in describing natural items, they fact that the lines are all the same length made the Pentagram a perfect symbol.  The pentagram, though it has been misused over the years by the media and by some religions who decided that it was an evil symbol, is nothing more then a symbol.  A symbol of religions from around the world, a symbol of perfection due to the mathematics that were discovered in it, a symbol of anything dealing with the divine seeing as it has a prime number of points (prime numbers have always held sway in symbology) and of course a symbol of mystery seeing as it has been tied to organizations like the Freemasons in the past.