Cirlot on bridges
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
A Dictionary of Symbols – J E Cirlot
According to Guenon, the Roman pontifex was literally a 'builder of bridges', that is, of that which bridges two separate worlds.
St Bernard has said that the Roman Pontiff, as the etymology of his name suggests, is a kind of bridge between God and Man (Tractatus de Moribus et Officio Episcoporum III, 9). For this reason, the rainbow is a natural symbol of the pontificate.
For the Israelites, it was the sign of the covenant between the Creator and his people, and in China, the sign denoting the union of heaven and earth. For the Greeks, it was Iris, a messenger of the gods. And there are a great many cultures where the bridge symbolises the link between what can be perceived and what is beyond perception.