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Lesson 22 - The Cross

The cross in its various forms may be traced back to remotest antiquity. It does not belong to any one religion or sect. It is the symbol of all spiritual truths. Archaeologists have found it inscribed on pottery, walls, and have classed them as prehistoric.

It was used by the Indians, Phoenicians, Persians, Medes, Greeks and Romans.

We know of 385 different types of cross, and it is possible that there are many more, some of which are purely ornamental.

The Chaldeao-Assyrians used the equilateral cross to symbolise the sky and its God Anu. When the Spanish entered South America they were amazed to find the cross used extensively, being a sign of the God of Rains. In other countries it was used as a symbol of the sun.

It is also used to symbolise Power, Light, Life and Love.

In the tombs of the Pyramids we see it in the hands of the God as a symbol of Regeneration. The dead one is shown lying on the ground in the form of a munmy, and the God is coming to touch his lips with it and revivify his body.

Even before the Egyptian civilisation came into being, it was buried with human bodies, along with food and weapons, again showing that the cross was used as part of the faith of a life beyond the tomb.

But we also find that the cross has been used for other than spiritual purposes, that the phallic cult used it to express their animal passions, and it brought ruin to the Greek and Roman empires. From the degrading phallic worship, the cross then had to be purged and purified and for many years it was used as an instrument for the infliction of cruel and intense suffering.

The good people, or God people were crucified on the cross. Thieves were crucified on the cross. It was used as an instrument of suffering.

Initiates were sometimes laid upon cross-shaped altars in the initiatory rituals of some of the ancient mysteries. The sign of the Cross is used in performing sacraments. Suffice to list here a few of the various crosses that we are all familiar with. breast. as also did the Buddhists and Brahmins. On the Island of Elephanta in the harbour of Bombay the Cross is used in the Brahmin temples carved out of rock. The Persians revered it and used the cross to symbolise Light and Truth. good and bad. Then he was lifted to an upright position. The arms of the condemned man were attached to this wood or beam. Hindus. we find that the cross was hung about the necks of the initiates of the Eleusinian Mysteries of Greece. The Russian and Greek churches touch the right shoulder first. The Chinese. the Roman Catholics touch the fingers to the foreheads. whose top was cut off some feet above the ground and fastened crosswise to the top of the vertical trunk. the words of various scholars who have interpreted the symbol to suit their thoughts. . left shoulder and right shoulder.If we go back in time. and it has been found on the Easter Islands. Such a cross was made by fastening a piece of wood to a tree or pole. or crucified long before Jesus. but again it is only intellectual discussion. We can give many meanings to the shape of the cross in relationship to man and Spirit. Scandinavians and American Indians used the cross in the shape of a swastika as a sacred symbol. Slaves and criminals were punished on the cross. Everywhere we look today. The Druids worshipped their God Hu. It is of course. also a symbol of the Christian religion. The Maya Indians worshipped the cross. in the form of an oak tree. They were tied or nailed to a standing cross until they died of thirst or hunger. we see signs of the Cross in various forms and we can use our own interpretation of this very ancient symbol that has been used for black and white. It was painted upon the foreheads of candidates passing through the pyramid mysteries of Central America and is a symbol for God among the North American Indians. The prisoners often had to carry these beams to the places where they were to die.

the movement of the earth. not perhaps in the physical sense. there is no mention of any remains of the true cross being found in the earliest accounts of discoveries made on Golgotha by Emperor Constantine's mother. Swastika or gammated cross was always venerated by people of every era for exalted meanings and only in recent years has it come into ill repute because of its use by political regimes. with a horizontal crossbeam near the top. in or around 326. A condensed account of a few words from Christian Mythology. running water. King of the Jews. it signified a two-headed mallet. but should be used by all. Began as a glorification of the Roman Lignum Infelix (unhappy wood.) This Roman cross we described previously i. upon which it was the custom of the day to execute criminals. the Tau comes to stand for the hammer of Thor. Universal Love to all and is not related to a religion. The cross was to the primitive mind a symbol of motion. Crux Ansata or looped cross is really a Tau cross with a handle or loop attached to its top. Even with the Egyptians. a wood post. Cyril of Jerusalem around the middle of the 4th Century when he speaks of fragments being scattered all over the world. The earliest mention of them was by St. and which of the two thieves. Christian Cross. . the movement of the sun across the heavens. all earliest records are of fragments of the cross discovered or objects made from the nails of crucifixion. which means "life". the wind. but that they were living in the next world. The number of fragments found may be best explained if we assume that every bit of wood gathered near the site became a relic and in many cases a means whereby a sense of direct contact with Christ was communicated. Empress Helena. the sign of the enforcer. The Egyptians know it as the Ankh. No one claims to have seen the whole cross. Tau Cross. the uniting of four castes. Not until the end of the century are we told that 3 separate crosses were found near the Holy Sepulchre with Pilate's original inscription “Jesus.” It was not attached to any of them and did not help to distinguish which was the cross of Jesus.e. Is so named because it effects the design of the Greek letter Tau. However.The White Cross is symbolic of Unity. With the Gauls. The sign was placed in the hands of Gods and personages to show that they were living.

This cross was worn as a decoration by the Hospitalers for their deeds of charity. The cross also stands for the trials and tribulations of life and the burdens one has to carry. depicts the point of unity.so named because it is mounted on steps. The cross represents the physical body of man. The rose in the centre of the cross. in salutation before the sun in the East. These constitute the first two letters of the Greek word for Christ. P is the Greek letter Rho. Maltese Cross or rayed cross. The partially unfolded rose in the centre of the cross represents the soul of man. became the symbol of Christ.their natures joined in a common purpose. it is built upon the stability of INFINITE TRUTH. It is for this reason that the term Xmas is still often used today as an abbreviation for Christmas. and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. The Cross Perronnée . The Cross on the Rock. the inner self unfolding within him as it receives more of the light. Upon the rock may be mounted the symbol of any faith teaching or principle.” The rock represents the stability of Divine principles being therefore eternal and enduring. with arms outstretched. John of Jerusalem. and unchanged by the vicissitudes of man. by virtue of the two different conditions . is more commonly known as the Cross of Calvary. It derives its name from the Roman numeral ten (x) upon which type of cross it is claimed Saint Andrew was martyred. X is also like the Greek letter Chi. Has a mystical and allegorical meaning. . that point where manifestation occurs. It sometimes had three or more horizontal bars. the latter depicting the Greater Light.the material and the spiritual . The most common theological interpretation is based on the following in Matthew XVI v 18 “Upon this rock I will build my church. where the two lines intersect. The abbreviation X and P combined.The Crux Immissa. or Latin cross finally in the early centuries took its place officially as the symbol of Christianity. enduring time. Andrew's cross also evolved into the monogram or emblem of Christ. if. The mystical interpretation defines the rock as the permanency of truth and infinite knowledge. in reality. There are various interpretations of the symbol of the cross mounted upon a rock. Patriarchal Cross was so named after the Bishops of the early Christian church. The Crux Decussata. A form of the St. of Saint Andrew's cross is an example. Rosicrucian Cross. who were known as patriarchs. Its form is still often used in military awards. The latter were an Order of Knighthood formerly known as the Knights of St.

HARI OM . and how it has been used.Synthetic Emblematic Cross designed by Manly P. Enough to know that it is such an ancient symbol. These are only a very few details in regard to the few crosses. a condition which must first come to pass before the ideals of Universal Brotherhood can be realised. only dwelling on the Light. signifying the unification of all religious and philosophic doctrines into one perfect unit. We hope you have found something of interest in this subject. We have not stressed the dark side of its uses because we do not intend to give power to anything of a dark nature. Hall is symbolic of various Mystery Schools gathered to form one harmonious pattern.