Monday, October 11, 2010

Cross at the Church Gates

I don't normally venture this way but the light was so good for mid-September that I had to try something different. This is the gate of Haddington Road Church School and I'm afraid I surprised one or two walkers since I was lurking behind the gate trying to get the shot right. The scene was extremely contrasty and I did my best (That's the Hibernian Hotel that lies behind on the corner). As I was taking the shot, I was thinking about what Carl Jung says concerning the difference between a sign and a symbol. The cross on the gateway is technically a sign. It points the way to the church of which one might be a member. The cross on the altar is quite different argues Jung. That, he says, is an ineffable symbol denoting the sacred and holy. As a symbol, the cross dates back to the 15th Century BC and is the third of four basic symbols, others being the centre, the circle and the square. It creates a totality - in fact I rather like Soustelle's notion following his study of Mexico, that it is the symbol of the world in its totality. But there is much more to say about the cross.