Monday, November 21, 2011


There are some things that come in fours' that are simply mindblowing. I will not talk about objects but rather symbols.
So, ever heard of Carl Jung? Well, he's a Psychologist who came up with 'archetypes' and the 'introverts-extroverts scale'. He is mostly known for the former and what archetypes meant to him was 'they are the primordial energies which underlie human consciousness.' He also believed that symbols are the language of the imagination because they can penetrate all lines of reason and enter into the subconscious. Symbols can be used for both good and bad. Looking through history and what happens today it's all about symbols. Even what businesses or major corporations call 'logos' are simply symbols that enable clients all over the world to identify them. Like Apple, has the apple that's bitten-Christians have the Cross, Nike has the tick, and so forth. Anyone across the globe can know a Nike product by looking at the tick and the direction it's taken and there you have it, Nike!
So, my recent encounter with Zen and volunteering led me to some very surprising if not interesting connections. All of them have loads to do with the number 4 (four).

 According to Jung, on your journey in life's work there are four crucial symbols that depict certain characters or qualities that you ought to possess.These four are : The Hero, Magician, Warrior and Scholar. Simply put- when you are looking for work or employment like the Hero, you are on a quest, and like the Magician you can decide to employ your skills for better or worse, like the Warrior every action you take is a battle with your conscience on your values and in so doing you can learn and also teach others something about your journey like a Scholar does.
In reading this some other factors came to mind and it hit me how these four factors are closely related to other symbols in history like:
  • 4 wisdoms of Zen Buddhism ( Great perfect mirror wisdom, The marvelous observing mirror, The perfecting of action wisdom, the universal nature wisdom)
  • 4 directions of the native American medicine wheel
  • 4 rivers of the Garden of Eden
  • 4 gardens on Islamic paradise
  • 4 sons of Horus in Egyptian mythology
  • 4 Holy living creatures of Ezekiel's vision (eagle, lion, man, bull)
  • 4 elements in nature (water, air/wind, fire, earth)
Isn't it simply remarkable how such things can come in fours and how closely related they are in terms of the various qualities that they advocate for or stand for? So, it's all about fours today and I figured since I have stumbled upon this why not share it?