Symbols - What does heaven look like
Spinning and weaving are symbolically different although they are linked.
Spinning is thus a symbol of the spiritual path as one leaves the wheel of life [spinning wheel] and symbolically ‘climbs’ the celestial pole [distaff].
Example of symbolism in use
|A royal portrait employing strong symbolism - Queen Elisabeth of Romania born a German princess, adopts the national costume of Romania, with distaff and spindle.|
In Scandinavia, the stars of Orion's belt are Friggjar rockr, "Frigg’s distaff".
One of Grimm’s tales, "Spindle, Shuttle, and Needle", recounts how the magic spindle, flying out of the girl's hand, flew away, unravelling behind it a thread, which the prince followed, to find what he was seeking: a bride "who is the poorest, and at the same time the richest". Thus we have here the allegory of the mystic marriage, it includes the rhyme:
"Spindle, my spindle, haste, haste thee away,
and here to my house bring the wooer, I pray."
"Spindel, Spindel, geh' du aus,
bring den Freier in mein Haus."
In Baltic myth, Saule is the life-affirming sun goddess, whose numinous presence is signed by a wheel or a rosette. She spins the sunbeams. The Baltic connection between the sun and spinning is as old as spindles of the sun-stone, amber, that have been uncovered in burial mounds. Thus we have the connection between the spiritual path, the path of the sun and the celestial pole.
In India, the charkha is a spinning wheel, with a drive wheel being turned by hand, while the yarn is spun off the tip of the spindle. When Mahatma Gandhi used the charkha, there may well have been a symbolic side to his use, as it may have been not just a plea for people to adopt a more simple craft based life style, but an additional plea – for anyone who understood the symbolism – to go for the spiritual eastern life style rather than the materialistic western life style.
The classic folk tale that incorporates spinning wheels is Charles Perrault's The Sleeping Beauty, in which the main character pricks her hand on the spindle of a spinning wheel and goes into a deep sleep following a fairy's curse. The story is an allegory of a princess [ higher spirit] becoming human [sleep] and being involved in entanglement where she is only able to be saved by the mystic marriage [the prince].
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- Plato - Republic X - 02 Tale of Er #013765
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