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Elemental Pentagram

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Five Elements and Pentagram
Catherine Beyer

The pentagram has represented many diverse meanings over the centuries. Since at least the Renaissance, one of its associations is with the five elements.

Arrangement

Traditionally, there is a hierarchy among the elements ranging from the most spiritual and rarefied to the least spiritual and most material. This hierarchy determines the placement of elements around the pentagram.

Starting with spirit, the highest element, we descend to fire, then follow the lines of the pentagram over to air, across to water, and down to earth, the lowest and most material of the elements. The final line between earth and spirit completes the geometric shape.

Orientation

The issue of a pentagram being point-up or point-down only gained relevance in the 19th century and has everything to do with the arrangement of elements. A point-up pentagram came to symbolize spirit ruling over the four physical elements, while a point-down pentagram symbolized spirit being subsumed by matter or descending into matter.

Since then, some have simplified those associations to simply represent good and evil. This is generally not the position of those who commonly work with point-down pentagrams, and is often not the position of those associating themselves with point-up pentagrams either.

Colors

The colors used here are those associated with each element by the Golden Dawn. These associations are commonly borrowed by other groups as well.
Read more: More information on pentagrams
Read more: Pentagram Gallery

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