Introduction / Using ARAS: The Symbolism of the Cross

[aras-image:5Dk.112,,9,,,12th Century Pentecost painting]
  One painting of the Pentecost shows individual flames around a wheel touching each of Christ's apostles
The unmoving centre of the wheel is the vertical axis of the cross, the axis mundi, the centre of the world. The potter shapes his bowl at the unmoving centre of the wheel. The vertical axis is the spindle which unites the planes of existence. Once we think of the horizontal axes as a plane pierced by the vertical axis, we have visualised a three-dimensional cross, the symbolism of seven as completeness, totality. The horizontal bar of the cross the represents a given plane of existence with an indefinite number of possibilities, the Surface of the Water in Chinese imagery, Prakriti in Indian. The vertical axis represents the hierarchy of all the degrees of existence, the Activity of Heaven in Chinese imagery, Purusha, Consciousness, which informs the activity of nature, Praktiki, in Indian imagery.