Baphomet - Equilibrium of Opposites
Baphomet - associated with a "Sabbatic Goat" image drawn by Eliphas Levi (on which this illustration is based), containing binary elements representing the "sum total of the universe" (e.g. male and female, good and evil, etc.). On one hand, Levi's intention was to symbolise his concept of "the equilibrium of the opposites" that was essential to his magnetistic notion of the Astral Light.
© Mary Evans Picture Library
The Astrarium of Giovanni Dondi (1318-1388)
The Astrarium of Giovanni Dondi (1318-1388). Used to determine the position of planets according to he Ptolemaic theory of the Universe. National Museum of Science and Technology Leonardo da Vinci. Milan. Italy.
© Thaliastock / Mary Evans
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Bribri Indian Shaman & Conical House, Costa Rica
The Head Shaman of the Bribri People of the Talamanca Province, Costa Rica - pictured in front of the Conical House. The Bribri spiritual practice is centred on the conical house. These structures can be found in many Amazonian groups belonging to the Macro-chibchan language family. The conical house is a symbolic representation of the universe. It is supported by eight pilars symbolizing the animals that helped Sibu construct the Universe. The house has four levels representing the four levels of the world, being the ground level the plane we inhabit. On the second level dwell the spirits of plants and animals, and the owners of the rivers, this is where Sibu's helpers live. On the third level of the universe live the spirits who cause disease and suffering and descend periodically to cause grief on earth. The final and highest level of the conical house is where Sibu, accompanied by his helper the king of vultures lives. In this same level live the most malignant spirits as well. The Bribri explanation for this is that Sibu keeps them enclosed there, like a warden keeps the inmates in a prison. There are also three other levels beneath the world we inhabit. One of them is the place where Bribri souls go after death. Date: circa 1910s
© Mary Evans / Grenville Collins Postcard Collection