wow! i like the way you explained the word “symbol”… in my mind, however, i just can’t easily separate the pair ‘symbolic-figurative’ as a contrast for ‘concrete-literal’… not that i’m saying ‘symbolic’ is equal to ‘figurative’… any thoughts?

The Art of Wonder

As above, so below


symbol (n.)          

early 15c., “creed, summary, religious belief,” from Late Latin symbolum “creed, token, mark,” from Greek symbolon “token, watchword, sign by which one infers; ticket, a permit, license” (the word was applied c.250 by Cyprian of Carthage to the Apostles’ Creed, on the notion of the “mark” that distinguishes Christians from pagans), literally “that which is thrown or cast together,” from assimilated form of syn- “together” (see syn-) + bole “a throwing, a casting, the stroke of a missile, bolt, beam,” from bol-, nominative stem of ballein “to throw”


Symbols are simple – they are the essence of a thing,  an object, an idea, a reality.
Yet they are infinitely complex because of the whole of life, of human experience, of existence that  they contain.
The symbol is simple, but  the associations, resonances and depths contained in the symbol are never ending.


A symbol is something charged with energy, with power, subjective…

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