Humanity has always passed messages through symbolism. Human beings have used symbols to pass messages without words since time immemorial. History is rife with symbolism. Cave paintings, smoke signals, drum beats, and many other forms point to the power of symbols in conveying meanings. Symbols have been used as a channel through which humans communicate with the universe to achieve a state of oneness from the beginning of time.
Celtic mythology was deeply rooted in symbolism. This was not unique to them as mankind from all walks of life and cultures have used symbols throughout ages to convey deeper meanings.
What is a Celtic Five-Fold?
Celtic mythology and spiritual beliefs are built around the Borromean cross also known as the Celtic fold symbol. It is also referred to as the circular knot.
Five circles intertwine taking the form and shape of a cross to form this symbol. The four outer circles are linked by a central circle in perfect connection and oneness.
The central circle is always interpreted in spiritual circles as God holding the entire universe in one piece.
Several variations of the symbol exist in other cultures and religions too. Coincidentally, they too convey the same principles and meanings.
Do you know the features of the symbol and what they ultimately present? Worry no more, here are some interesting facts you will learn about the Celtic symbol in this article. Let us begin with the key features that make the symbol
The Five-Fold Symbol Features
The symbol is always illustrated using four circles. The circles are placed in a way that they create the shape of a cross. The four are then connected by a fifth middle circle with every piece inter-looping on the other.
The main features of the Celtic five-fold symbol are summarized as:
- The outer rings
- The central ring
- The connections
- The Celtic symbol has four outer rings that are connected seamlessly in four different directions like the compass. The outer rings are then linked flawlessly to the central ring which holds them together to form a single unit that cannot be broken. You cannot tell which ring was connected first or the one that was connected last. I believe that this denotes equality and universality in some way.
- The central ring holds the four outer rings at the center and joins all of them to form a connection without a beginning or an end.
- The connections: The rings are connected in such an intricate manner that they live you with the impression that there is an absolute unity.
You now have a clear picture of the Celtic five-fold symbol’s features, could there be a deeper meaning and a hidden symbolism? Yes, there is. Everything part, every detail of the symbol denotes something. The message may be interpreted differently from one individual to another but there is also uniformity in agreement.
You may have wondered why five but not six or four or three but here are a few reasons and deeper meanings to that answer.
Discover More about the Five-Fold Symbolism and Meaning
The Celtic five-fold symbol – Image source: Irish around the world
Despite the simplicity of the symbol and its ease to replicate, its strength lies in the magic number five.
- As previously noted, the central ring symbolizes God among the Irish Celtics. Other spiritual adherents from various cultures and world religions share the same belief. It represents god at the center holding the entire universe in place and as a unit.
- The second meaning of the central circle is time. It represents infinity; it is also the middle clock hand that changes seasons in human life and nature at large.
- Finally, the interweaving of the five rings signifies harmony, togetherness, and unity. They don’t just portray the spiritual and the natural but the totality of a human being as a composite of mind, body, spirit, and soul.
As we proceed, we shall examine the deeper meanings associated with this symbol. This list sheds light on the symbolism and meanings that the symbol conveys to humanity. Here is an examination of various interpretations and meanings as given in relation to the symbol. Here are six deeper things that the symbol means to people:
The four rings stand for the four seasons of spring, autumn, winter, and summer. The Celts believed that time was a cycle and captured the same in perfect symbolism.
2. The five elements
The five rings in the Celtic five-fold symbol represent the five powerful elements that form the foundation of all life and sustain it on earth. The five are water, fire, air, earth, and the spirit. This is a fundamental Celtic belief.
Greater awareness happens when you meditate on the symbol. The process allows the five aspects of nature to commune with your human consciousness. Heaven, spirituality, faith, and God meet you at a common ground where you share a deep understanding beyond words. You gain profound insight into nature as a part of the bigger picture. This spurs personal growth and development.
The Celtic fold symbol also represents direction. it denotes the four directions of north, east, south, and West. It is a guide as you journey along in this life. it ensures that you are on the right path when you focus on it deeply.
Apart from representing god, the center ring is also a surety of protection. It is a guarantee of safety and defense. Furthermore, the number five is considered holy in many religions and ancient beliefs, cultures, and traditions.
The four circles are representative of the children of the Irish goddess Danu. The goddess at the center is surrounded by her four children around her represented by the four rings. She is the central circle and the other four are Dagda, Nuada, Lugh, and Fal.
The Celtic five-fold symbol remains a universal symbol with variations across cultures worldwide. It is less talked about but seen everywhere as people go about the business of living and finding fulfillment in living. Religions and cultures have created variations but the concepts and meanings remain the same even when names and styles slightly vary.