Dear reader, my name is Luis Miguel Goitizolo. In this page I present an article inspired in my book The Wheel of Time - A Study in the Doctrine
of Cosmic Cycles
and in other, similar interests.


'Axis Mundi'

“O conqueror of wealth, there is no truth superior to Me (Lord Krishna). 
Everything rests upon Me, as pearls are strung on a thread.” 
(Bhagavad Gita 7.7)

 

Axis Mundi Latin for “the Axis of the Universe” – is currently one of the least-known ancient symbols in the world. In older times, however, it was widely spread as an esoteric expression of the most fundamental reality: an axis which traverses the whole universe and, in doing so, remains immobile while the whole world revolves around it. In the middle of a changing world, it so constituted the essence and “soul” of the universe that, as such, not only was it its support but also became a point of connection between heaven and earth.

It is in this capability that the so-called
 
sacred mountains’s role becomes clear. I have recently referred to them – as well as to many other derivatives, both natural and man-made – as images of the “center of the universe”, actually countless in number since virtually all of the world’s cultures regarded their own localities as the center of the world. The name of China, “Middle Kingdom”, expressed this reality, and similar expressions were used to refer to “Jambudvipa” – regarded as the actual navel of the universe in the traditions from India – and to Cuzco, the old capital of the Inca Empire, known among its dwellers as “the world’s navel”.


 


 

 The citadel of Machu Picchu in Cuzco, the capital of the Inca Empire

and the “World’s Navel” for its dwellers (Photo Wikipedia)




Along the same lines, Mount Meru in India (the “center of all physical and spiritual universes”) and Mount Kailash in Tibet; Mount Zion and Jacob’s ladder for the ancient Hebrews; and the Ziggurats in Mesopotamia and the huge pyramids in Teotihuacan, Mexico, featuring staircases leading to temples at the top or directly to the sky, were all spots where earth and sky came closest and, in gaining status as centers of the center – the axis mundi - became specific places where communication between heaven and earth could take place.

 


 

 

On the days of the winter and summer solstices, Teotihuacan is packed
with folks who dress in white and climb to the top of the Pyramid
of the Sun. They stand at the top with arms outstretched
to receive the special energy of the site on that day. 
(
© 2007 Suzanne Barbezat)


 

This belief has been partially explained in terms of psychology by saying that “home is indeed the center of one's known universe, the point of one's origin: from it one may venture in any of the four cardinal directions, make discoveries, and establish new centers.” (See http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Axis_mundi) This may sound plausible, but it cannot explain other things, the most important of which, in my view, is that a greater center cannot be an image of a lesser one; all symbols or images are formed from greater objects. The book of Genesis says, “God created man in his own image; in his own image He created them.” And while atheistic people may argue that it is man that has created God, this was not the ancients’ position, as their belief in God was absolute and universal: God was their absolute center and the center of the universe, and the whole world was but His symbol. 

Still more, the universality of the hidden lore supporting the ancients’ vision of the world makes it very difficult, if not altogether impossible, that the various cultures were spontaneously and simultaneously born around the world – let alone that great centers were born from small ones; I have suggested elsewhere that the numerous analogies rather suggest an unknown common origin and, in fact, it would appear to be more logical, or at least more plausible, that there previously existed an older civilization that was the depository of the knowledge based on such information, and that all other cultures received from it such knowledge, which was then modified and, for the most part, distorted by the particular circumstances of time and place. This older civilization could only exist in times of what is universally known as the Golden Age
 

In my last post I have developed the above idea in some detail, and concluded that at least for the present humanity, that of the Homo Sapiens Sapiens or Cromagnon, the ideal conditions to make it possible an “eternal spring”, the season that according to all traditional lore ruled throughout the Golden Age, could only exist in one of the two Poles of our planet. For the Indo-European tradition this Pole was the North Pole, and the civilization over which an “eternal spring” prevailed was the Hyperborean. 
 

A universal symbol that has been usually misinterpreted but actually represents this supreme, original center located in the North Pole is the swastika, which was the same as that of the Hindus and Greeks and the “Olin” of the Aztecs – who in turn borrowed it from the Toltecs, whose name was derived from Thule, the main city of the Hyperboreas – and an archetypical form which was disseminated all over the world in a virtually identical manner.

 
 

 

  

In Buddhism, the swastika is oriented horizontally. The swastikas 
(in either orientation) appear on the chest of some statues
of Gautama Buddha and are often incised on the soles of
the feet of the Buddha
 in statuary. Because of the
association with the right facing swastika with
Nazism, Buddhist swastikas after the mid
20th century are almost universally
left-facing. (Photo Crystalinks.com) 


 

Of unpleasant connotation because of Nazism, the swástika actually was an accurate symbol of the Earth Poles in that its four rays represented the four directions of space, and especially in that the four extremities of those rays – more particularly when they were curved – graphically expressed the idea of rotary motion around the Earth’s axis as seen from above.  Is it possible to better interpret the idea of motion, or of its application to the poles?
 

The swastika symbol represented the path of the migrations of the Hopi clans. The center of the cross represented Tuwanasavi or the Center of the Universe which lay in what is now the Hopi country in the southwestern part of the US. Tuwanasavi was not the geographic center of North America, but the magnetic or spiritual center formed by the junction of the North-South and the East-West axis along which the Twins sent their vibratory messages and controlled the rotation of the planet.” (See http://www.crystalinks.com/swastika.html)


Also, in the vertical cosmological conception of Hindus and Buddhists alike, usually consisting of seven higher or heavenly planets and seven lower or hellish planets with the Earth (Bhu-Mandala) as “intermediate” planetary system, the world’s axis actually traverses the Earth through its poles.

 

Below is a representation of Bhu-mandala, the intermediate planetary system of the Earth, as a planisphere or polar-projection map of the Earth globe with the seven dvipas and “oceans” (actually a schematized representation of the solar system) surrounding it, a model given by Bhagavata Purana.
 

 

 

 
 

At the center of Bhu-mandala is a version of Mount Meru as a
inverted cone and at the top of it is the “City of Brahma”,
a representation of the primeval paradise
(by Richard L. Thompson,
at www.unitedindia.com/cosmology.htm).
 

 

 

Among the multiplicity of objects that can express the idea of axis mundi, trees are well known; and among these, the “Tree of Life” and the “Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil” in the book of Genesis, as two aspects of the same image, are prominent. They are said to stand at the center of the garden of Paradise from which four rivers flow to nourish the whole world.  The garden of Paradise has usually been placed in Central Asia by scholars, but in the light of some parallelisms like the Hyperboreas’ most likely location during the Golden Age at the beginning of the present Manvantara (see Mercator’s Map of the Northern Polar Regions here), when the prevailing conditions around the North Pole were like those of an eternal spring, it seems more probable that it has also to be found there. 

 

 

 

As an image of the axis mundi, a tree provides a symbol that unites 
three planes: its branches reach for the sky, its trunk meets the earth, 
and its roots reach down into the underworld. Such occurs with the banyan tree 
of Bhagavad-gita and with the Bodhi tree of the Sacred Fig variety 
under which Gautama Siddhartha, the historical Buddha, 
sat on the night he attained enlightenment. 
(Photo Wikipedia)
 


 

Also the human body, inasmuch as a “microcosms” paralleling the “macrocosms” or universe, can express the symbol of the world’s axis. Some of the more abstract “Tree of Life” representations, like the Sefirot in Kabbalism and in the Chakra system of Hinduism and Buddhism, convey the idea of the human body as a pillar between heaven and earth. Disciplines such as Yoga and Tai Chi begin from the premise of the human body as “axis mundi” (see http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Axis_mundi.


 

 (Click on image to enlarge)

 

 

 The system of chakras in Hinduism

 

 

But these few notes on the axis mundi are becoming somewhat lengthy, so I will better stop here. In my next collaboration I will talk about yet other most important images of the center of the universe – Sacred Cities. 
 

 

Thank you,

 

Luis Miguel Goitizolo

 

 

 

 

 

A Message from The Author

 


Dear Friend,

Ever since I was
a youth I was fascinated by Oriental wisdom and particularly by the Hindu doctrines. However, it was not until a few years ago that I undertook the task of studying the ancient doctrine of cosmic cycles from different perspectives, though mainly using the most relevant sacred texts from all around the world. In time, I felt the urge to write a book about my studies in that matter in my mother tongue, Spanish, which I titled "La rueda del tiempo" (in English, "The Wheel of Time"). It is excerpts of that book and other original articles dealing with similar topics that I will start publishing as of today through this medium.

More recently, after some years as a networker promoting a variety of programs, I decided to translate my book into English, a task that was successfully completed a few months ago. And over the past few weeks and months I have been publishing excerpts of this translation, as well as other original articles in English that also deal with similar topics, on various online media of the United States and other countries.

 

Thank You,

 

Luis Miguel Goitizolo
Lima - Perú


miguelgoitizolo@gmail.com

 


 
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