Ancient Pagan and Modern Christian Symbolism
by Thomas Inman, M.D. (1874)
Pagan and Christian symbolism
Figure 20 represents two equilateral triangles, infolded so as to make a six-rayed star, the idea embodied being the androgyne nature of the deity, the pyramid with its apex upwards signifying the male, that with the apex downwards the female. The line at the central junction is not always seen, but the shape of the three parallel bars reappears in Hindoo frontlet signs in conjunction with a delta or door, shaped like the "grove" in Fig. 17; thus showing that the lines serve also to indicate the masculine triad. The two triangles are also understood as representing fire, which mounts upwards, and water, which flows downwards. Fire again is an emblem of the sun, and water of the passive or yielding element in nature. Fire also typifies Eros or Cupid. Hymen is always represented carrying a torch. It is also symbolic of love; e.g., Southey writes.
"But love is indestructible,
Its holy flame for ever burneth;
From heaven it came,
To heaven returneth."
And again, Scott writes—
"It is not phantasy's hot fire
Whose wishes, soon as granted, fly," &c.