Mirrors

October 11, 2010 § Leave a comment

The Mirror as a symbol provides multiple and diverse meanings and associations, which, like Cirlot points out, gives the-mirror-as-symbol the same characteristics as the mirror itself. For Scheler and other philosophers the mirror is an instrument of self-contemplation. This gives the mirror an introspective quality, but the mirror can also be seen as a reflection of the universe. Making a connection between this statement, and the water as reflector, Cirlot says: “the cosmos appears as a huge Narcissus regarding his own reflections in the human consciousness” (p. 211). The state of the world is of temporal character, it  is constantly changing; just like the images reflected in a mirror appears and disappears, one state being substituted for another. Cirlot connects the “absent” mirror and the “peopled” mirror with a kind of phasing, relating this to moon symbolism and the moon’s phases. The moon is in itself a mirror: reflecting the light from the sun. The moon has been seen as a symbol of the multiplicity of the soul – another thing that connects lunar symbolism with mirror symbolism. Sometimes the mirror is used as a door or passage through which the soul may pass on to “the other side”.

Other keywords: the sea of flames, twins, duplicity, dualism, the unconscious, Lacan, Vanitas, diabolical influences, truth, reversion.

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