By Joseph “Joe” Panek | A Seeker’s Thoughts
What is it about the Apple? What caused this fruit to become such a sacred, magical and enchanting Symbol in the mythologies and folklores of the world?
We have Johnny Appleseed planting Apples everywhere.
An Apple fell upon the head of Isaac Newton as he was sitting in the shade of an Apple tree (we should be thankful that Sir Isaac did not choose to sit under a coconut tree!).
One of the twelve labors of Hercules required that he obtain an Apple from the nymphs who guarded the Garden of the Hesperides; thereby gaining him immortality.
King Arthur and Merlin are said to have sailed off to the blessed Isle of Avalon where they enjoy eternal life. Avalon is derived from the Welsh word for apple, afal.
And in Christian mythology Eve offers Adam an Apple, a Forbidden Fruit which grew upon the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil in the Garden of Eden. And though Eve originally offered Adam “a fruit”, this fruit later evolved into an Apple.
In Greek mythology the Apple is associated with Aphrodite, the goddess of Love. Also in Greek mythology, the root of the word apple is associated with the sun god Apollo.
In Chinese mythology the Apple is the Symbol for peace and the Apple blossom is a Symbol of feminine Beauty.
In mystic literature the Apple tree is Symbolic of the “Tree of Life” or “Tree of Unity”, the other tree which grew in the Garden of Eden, or Paradise…the “Tree of Immortality” from which Adam and Eve were permitted to eat.
The Apple tree is often also Symbolic of “The World Tree“.
The Apple is a circular fruit. The Circle is a Symbol for “The All”, “The Eternal” and “The Complete”. However, many other fruits are circular: such as the orange, peach, nectarine, grapefruit and even the grape. So why was the Apple chosen, above all the other circular fruits, to represent “The All” along with everything which is contained within “The All”?
The Apple was chosen because within the Apple there is contained the Five-Pointed Star and the Seeded Vulva which Symbolize the two aspects which are required for creation in the material realm.
The Five-Pointed Star:
When we slice an Apple horizontally (width-wise), the Seed structure at the center of the Apple forms a perfectly symmetrical Five-Pointed Star.
Five is the number which represents the spiritual and unseen aspect of life and creation. Within the number Five is contained the Four Elements of Fire, Earth, Air and Water along with the quintessential Fifth Element which is referred to by the Alchemists as Aether, the Chinese as ki or chi, the Indian mystics as prana, and the ancient Egyptians as ka.
When Five is viewed in this Numerological manner it consists of the numbers 4 + 1; the Four Elements plus Aether.
The number Five is represented in Symbolism by the Five-Pointed Star of the ancient Egyptians; a Symbol which abounds in their artwork.
We also find the Five-Pointed Star represented by the Chinese character “da” which esoterically Symbolizes “the superior [illuminated] person” and in Leonardo da Vinci’s Vitruvian man: the naked man with arms, legs and head outstretched in the shape of a Five-Pointed Star…all contained within a Circle.
The Five-Pointed Star was also the secret Symbol of Pythagoras and his followers.
The Seeded Vulva:
When we slice an Apple vertically (length-wise) the core portion has the shape of the Vulva in which the Seeds are contained.
Symbolically, the feminine Vulva-shape which contains the masculine Seeds represents the act of creation in the physical realm. For, in the physical realm, when the masculine Seed enters the feminine Vulva, creation and life are the result.
The Seeded Vulva Symbolizes the complimentary aspects of duality which, when joined together, in a Union of Duality, create life not only in the physical but also the mental realm; the two realms we experience during our Current Incarnation.
Within the Circular confines of the Apple, “The All”, is contained the Symbolism of the two aspects necessary for creation in the realm of matter: The Five-Pointed Star (the spiritual, invisible essence) and the Seeded Vulva (the material, visible essence).
When these two aspects are joined together, creation (humanlife) occurs. This is the mystery which is further Symbolized by the act of Weaving which is depicted for us by way of the spinning wheel or loom. The spinning wheel or loom of mythology and folklore takes two Threads, one Thread representing the spiritual and the other Thread representing the material, and unites these two Threads into one in the magical and mysterious act which creates a fully functioning human being.
This is why the Apple, which contains within it the Symbolism of the spiritual and material aspects of creation, is the representative fruit of the creative process which we call life.In the Apple we find, Symbolically, the spiritual (Five-Pointed Star) and the material (Seeded Vulva) encircled by “The All”.
In the material realm we can liken the Union of the Seed and the Vulva to sexual awakening and physical creation. In the mental realm, which is a complimentary aspect associated with a person’s physical realm, we can liken the aspects of the Seed and the Vulva to the conception and fruition of ideas: ideas (Seeds) which when planted and left to harvest within the fertile Subconscious (Vulva) create for us new comforts, achievements, and benefits. And all of this creation, both physical and mental, contained within the Seeded Vulva is powered by the mysterious energies Symbolized by the Five-Pointed Star.
And finally, although the Apple has been associated with temptation, the Word temptation can also be interpreted to mean “test”. And as a test, the Apple is a test-ament to who and what we truly are: The power of the spiritual and the physical aspects of creation all combined into One!