Perhaps no other ancient symbol in the world is more important and recognized by all nations than the Triangle △.

The triangle has always been considered to be sacred from its earliest associations with mathematics, philosophy, and religion.

Since time immemorial, it has been used to represent diety and the active principle in the form of fire that pervades all nature and life as we know it.

This is why we find the triangle commonly used in many religions and belief systems, including Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Freemasonry, Gnosticism, Rosicrucianism, and Kabbalah to name a few.

From the great pyramids of Egypt to the Star of David and Signet of Solomon (Two interlaced triangles) and its association with the “Eye of Providence,” sometimes referred to as the “All-Seeing Eye of God” and “The Grand Architect of the Universe (T.G.A.O.T.U)” to modern mathematics.

The Greek philosopher, Plato once said that the world was built from triangles.

It is a geometric shape that has three points, upon which it can stand. It is also a stable shape because as you add more sides, it gets more stable.

At its essence, the triangle and number 3 represent the balance and stability between the three worlds of human existence – earth, heaven, and hell.

Many of know the triangle and eye from the U.S. Great Seal and the back of the dollar bill.

The triangle has also been used for hundreds of years as a symbol of the Holy Trinity of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Often depicted in Christian iconography as a triangular halo with rays of light emanating as a sign of God’s radiance.

In Judaism, the Star of David and Signet of Solomon shows two interlaced triangles.

One triangle is upright and the other is inverted to represent the two main forces in nature – the light and dark, good and evil, ignorance and wisdom, and active and passive.

The point-up triangle can also represent fire – the male energy or masculine elements. The point-down triangle represents matter, and the earth – female energies and feminine elements.

As it relates to humans, we can safely state that it symbolizes the union of body, mind, and spirit, or heaven, earth, and water, and its mastery over these elements.

Throughout the symbology of Freemasonry, you will find the most prominent of all symbols is the triangle, which is also represented by the number 3 and the structure of a pyramid.

According to Freemason and historian, Albert Mackey, there is no symbol as significant as the triangle and was adopted by all nations in early antiquity as a symbol of deity. Mackey had wrote;

“There is no symbol more important in its significance, more various in its application, or more generally diffused throughout the whole system of Freemasonry, than the triangle. An examination of it, therefore, cannot fail to be interesting to the Masonic student.

The equilateral triangle appears to have been adopted by nearly all the nations of antiquity as a symbol of the Deity, in some of his forms or emanations, and hence, probably, the prevailing influence of this symbol was carried into the Jewish system, where the Yod within the triangle was made to represent the Tetragrammaton, or sacred name of God.

The equilateral triangle, says Brother D. W. Nash (Freemasons Magazine iv, page 294), “viewed in the light of the doctrines of those who gave it currency as a divine symbol, represents the Great First Cause, the Creator and Container of all things, as one and indivisible, manifesting Himself in an infinity of forms and attributes in this visible universe.”(Source: Mackey’s Encyclopedia of Freemasonry)”

In Freemasonry, and other mystery schools like Rosicrucianism, it is a representation of the metaphysical joining together your physical self with your spiritual self to create harmony and balance within yourself and the world.

According to Freemason and author, Manly P. Hall:

“Man’s threefold lower nature—consisting of his physical organism, his emotional nature, and his mental faculties—reflects the light of his threefold Divinity and bears witness of It in the physical world.

Man’s three bodies are symbolized by an upright triangle; his threefold spiritual nature by an inverted triangle.

These two triangles, when united in the form of a six-pointed star, were called by the Jews “the Star of David,” “the Signet of Solomon,” and are more commonly known today as “the Star of Zion.”

These triangles symbolize the spiritual and material universes linked together in the constitution of the human creature, who partakes of both Nature and Divinity.

Man’s animal nature partakes of the earth; his divine nature of the heavens; his human nature of the mediator.” (The Secret Teachings of All Ages)

Albert Pike said;

The ingenious and mystical idea which caused the Triangle to be venerated, was applied to the figure 4 (4). It was said that it expressed a living being, I, bearer of the Triangle △, the emblem of God; i.e., man bearing with himself a Divine principle (Albert Pike, Morals and Dogma, 1871, 632-633).

The Ancient History of the Triangle

The mysteries of the triangle were first invented by Pythagoras who gave us the Pythagorean theorem, or Pythagoras’ theorem, which is a fundamental relation in Euclidean geometry among the three sides of a right triangle.

The Pythagorean theorem states that with a right-angled triangle, the sum of the squares of the two sides that form the right angle is equal to the square of the third, longer side, which is called the hypotenuse. This allows you to determine the length of the hypotenuse with the equation a2 + b2 = c2, in which a and b represent the two sides of the right angle and c is the long side.

He was was also credited with devising the tetractys, the triangular figure of four rows which add up to the perfect number, ten.

After Pythagoras, the Greek philosopher Plato was one of the first people that considered the world to have been built from triangles with the number 3 being a sacred mathematical number that has helped form its structure.

Platonic triangles are now referred to as triads, have been proven by science to be the fundamental building blocks in nature, society, technology, and mathematics.

We can see the triangle is representative of the Egyptian pyramids. It is a symbol of power, stability, and strength. The pyramid was known as Mer which means “place of ascent” – a place where a person’s soul could ascend after death.

It was the Ancient Egyptians who would influence the Greeks through the great philosophers such as Plato and Plutarch that would later become incorporated into Christianity by Rome and also by the Freemasons.

Plutarch said that the Egyptians worshipped Osiris, Isis, and Horus in the form of a triangle. He stated that they believed that everything perfect has three parts and there good God made himself threefold, while the evil God remained single.

Plutarch had written about the nature and divine status of the triangle in On Isis and Osiris in Moralia;

“Now the better and more divine nature consists of three; or of the intelligible part, of matter, and of that which is made up of both, which the Greeks call Cosmos (that is trimness) and we the world.

Plato, therefore, uses to name the intelligible part the form, the sample, and the father; and matter the mother, the nurse, and the seat and receptacle of generation; and that again which is made up of both, the offspring and the production.

And one would conjecture that the Egyptians called it the most perfect of triangles, because they likened the nature of the universe principally to that; which Plato also in his Commonwealth seems to have made use of for the same purpose, when he forms his nuptial diagram.”

In Plato’s dialog Timaeus, he explains the fundamental triad when he writes, “two things cannot be rightly put together without a third; there must be some bond of union between them.” He also presents this triad in his dialog Philebus as Beauty, Truth, and Measure (metriotes) or Symmetry (symmetria) and a related Platonic Triad is, (One, Intellect, Soul).

According to Plato, all the physical world elements are only reflections of the corresponding Forms (Ideas) from the World of Ideas.

If the world was truly built from triangles as Plato said and as we learn from the Freemasons, that it represents the emblem of God. What is called the Great First Cause, the Creator and Container of all things, as one and indivisible, manifesting Himself in an infinity of forms and attributes in this visible universe.

Then can we now identify an element or cause with modern science to see what the triangle truly represents and if the world is truly built from triangles?

Yes, I believe that I have done just that as I will explain in my article, Plato’s Fire: How the world is made of phosphorus tetrahedrons.

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