martes, 23 de noviembre de 2010

Traditional meaning of Archery

 Meaning of traditional shooting Archery 

(Text translated by a translator, sorry for the meaning and spelling errors)

     The symbolic content of art is originally linked to its practical function, but not necessarily lost when, under certain conditions, the art is practiced as a game or sport. So that for which it has knowledge of traditional symbolism can strike a balance between the physical and "metaphysical" is characteristic of all traditional cultures

the author with a Turkish bow

 The practice of archery in Turkey and India, before and after the introduction of firearms, provides an excellent example of ritual values can still be inherent in what a modern observer might seem a "mere sport." The archers shoot their arrows they used to on iron plates and metal mirrors, or the shot at valuable prizes placed on high poles: the symbolism involved are obviously the "penetration"., And the obtaining of property lots. Thus, we can assume that the "doctrine" implied an identification of the same archer with the arrow reached its target.

Maltese cross

   In Islam a Hadith attributed to Muhammad's saying that "there are three whom Allah leads to Paradise by means of one and the same arrow, ie, its maker, the archer, and that the charges and returns," meaning here commentator. Another Hadith glorifies the space between the two targets as a "paradise." These two targets represent the "Way" that leads directly from the site of the archer to the target site. Is somehow an "equivalent" in horizontal projection, the Axis Mundi and making journey on this route the archer is always, therefore, in a position "core" and "paradise" compared to the rest of the "Country" understood as a whole. Will also be noted that the alternate use of the two targets are shot in two opposite directions, one from and one to the original position of the archer shooting from a position near the second target implies a return of the arrow in the first place and it is clear that the two notions are the "Promotion" and "descent" and that the 'Way' is a kind of Jacob's Ladder.

Ideogram of China, formed by an arrow and a target

China to represent the glyph is used "chung-kuo" or Middle Kingdom. It consists of a vertical line represents an arrow and a square representing a target and as such command center and immutability. The character to represent the "Axis Mundi" in ancient China, and is located in the Basilica del Pilar de Zaragoza, is called "You" and is formed by the mirror image of the pictogram repeated "kung", which is a representation of the arc . To understand these images can help us ideogrammatic iconic symbolism of the bow and arrow between metaphysical thought. The bowstring, to be stretched, lowered the top end of it and climb the lower end. In this way the two ends of the arc is put in relation with Heaven and Earth, by symbolically on his strained the descent of the Spirit and the assumption of Matter. This identification of the extremities of the bow with the celestial and terrestrial worlds and other polar pairs contrasted as the shell and the pillar is commonly used since ancient times for cosmological interpretations of nature as you can read in Heraclitus (Fr. LVI): "The harmony of the world in order is a harmony of opposite tensions, like the harp or bow. "

Shell and pillar in the door to the crypt of the Basilica del Pilar

Both the bow and the lyre are emblematic figures of Apollo, the god of harmony, and somehow the combination of opposites through it. The etymology of his name tells us something essential principle it represents can be interpreted as "A" as alpha privative, as the rest of the name "Pollon" represents the Greek term that means what "a lot." So that is the god that leads to unity by reference of the plurality. We know of Plotinus that "Apollo" was the symbolic name by which the Pythagoreans expressed symbolically the "One"


An author comes to "derive" the bow and arrow which were given by the Archangel Gabriel to Adam. He had begged God for help against the birds that ate their crops.So Gabriel said to Adam: "This bow is the power of God, this string is your majesty, these arrows are the anger and God's punishment inflicted on their enemies." From Adam the tradition was transmitted through the "chain. of the Prophets. It is said that the compound bow was revealed to Abraham.

Turkish bow

At the head of the guild of archers is the 'Shaykh of the field. " The guild itself is definitely a secret group within which there is only an admission by qualification and initiation. The qualification is primarily a matter of training under a master, in which the acceptance of an applicant, or rather of a disciple, is accompanied by a ritual in which prayers are said for the benefit of the souls of the archers of all generations and of all believers archers.

Chinese cosmogram the sign of the "Axis Mundi"on center

When the applicant has gone through the whole course of instruction and become skilled, then follow the candidate's formal acceptance by the Shaykh. It then instructs the master of ceremonies to lead the disciple to his teacher, who will receive the "handle." Thus, the applicant is now a member of the guild of Archers and a link in the chain that goes back to Adam. Henceforth never use the bow unless you're in a state of ritual purity. The reception of the "handle." Is the outward sign of the initiation of the disciple. Of course, long been accustomed to bow, but what is meant by "handle. is more than just a bow handle: handle it involves the "secret." The grip is in fact in the case of the composite bow used by the Turks and most of the eastern, middle of the arch, which puts on its other two sides, top and bottom. It is for this middle part is made like an arch. Only when trying to understand this, there is the metaphysical significance of the arch, which had been described by Gabriel as "power" of God, the grip is the union of God to the Prophet. But to say this is to formulate the "secrets only in its more cryptic: a further explanation, based on the teachings of Ibn Alarabi is communicated to the applicant. This indicates only that he is the link-up between the Deity and the Prophet-down is the Quth while Axis Mundi, and it is a form of Spirit.

Sign of the "Axis Mundi" a tower of the Basilica del Pilar de Zaragoza

India literature contains texts in which the symbolic values of archery are evident. The Tgveda Samhita says that when you tense the bow takes the child (arrow) as a mother carries her son, and with common understanding when they break up (releasing the arrow), then hit the opponent. In this tradition the arrow is equated with Agni, the son of Heaven and Earth, whose birth coincides with the separation of their parents. Agni has iconographically Five darts. Hence also follows the iconography of Ama Leva, the god of love, as an archer

Budhisattva feat

 The two ends of the arc is placed back in connected with Heaven and Earth and other sexually contrasting pairs. Remember the quotes from Heraclitus: "The harmony of the ordered world is a harmony of opposite tensions, like the harp or bow."


In Athorva goalkeeper Veda Samhita is the "Lord of the Voice." Thus it is evident that the bowstring is for the voice and body expression, and the arrow to the concept expressed audible. So in Athorva Veda says that Brahmins, the human representatives of the Voice of the Lord, have piercing arrows that are not spent in vain. As the language of the string of his bow and arrows terrible words. In this concept lies the idea terminology to shoot the arrow, is used as as a broach or "straight talk."

arrow with owl feathers

So an "arrow. can be literally or metaphorically winged dart a "winged word." The Sanskrit term patatrin 'winged' denotes a 'bird' or 'arrow'. This word covers both values, since the rapid and uncontrollable flight of thought is often compared to the birds and the symbolism of the birds and the wing is closely connected with arrows.The language of archery can indeed be applied to all the problems of thought and behavior.In the ritual chants of Native Americans, specifically in the peyote ritual, at the touch of maracas and vocals compared to arrows that point to the central fire. The rod that the singer says in the left hand is, in turn, an image of the arc.

Peyote ceremony, singing with a stick and a rattle. represent a bow and arrows

Also the "aspirations" to sing and pray in the Catholic trades are other arrows that are released into the sky. The etymology comes from the Latin iaculatorius on the pitch. It seems that when praying aspirations formerly looked to the sky and made hand gestures like throwing up something invisible.The same symbolism pitcher is in the Psalms. These are hymns and liturgical chants.The term "Psalm" has its origins in the Greek tradition of the Septuagint, which gives the name of psalmoi. This word is translated from the Hebrew "mizmor" meaning song to play with the Lira. The term PSALM, the verb "psalein" means the act of pressing the string. Also describes the act of tensing and releasing the bowstring to shoot an arrow.

King David with a harp

In Sanskrit root "Sadh", where "sadhu", a "holy man." as an exclamation of approval, "go directly to the target"; sadhu can qualify well the archer or the arrow. It says: "As the archer straighten the dart, so the wise man corrects his will. Jataka Mahjanaka In the text, it says: "an archer to straighten an arrow looking all over with one eye closed, and this brings the teaching of unified vision.


The tip of a standard arrow when viewed from the archer's eye, has the same diameter as the Sun, or half a degree. In this way, we had to shoot 360 arrows if we cover the whole horizon. This fact is not without a certain symbolic significance.

Curiously, the tip of an arrow, the shooting range, ie from the mouth, has the same angular diameter as the sun or moon.

In the classical texts and myths say that the bow is the real weapon par excellence and is always a huge emphasis on the righteousness of the king, it is not irrelevant to note that the Sanskrit word "RJU" means "right", belong to the root common underlying "right", "correct., and" regional. The same in Latin and Sanskrit rex Reger and slit. From the traditional view, a king is not a governor 'absolutely', but the manager of a transcendent law, which human laws are satisfied. On more than one occasion makes the case Sankara archer deeply engrossed in his work an example of contemplative concentration.

David King

Aparadhas, Radha is the opposite of "missing the mark" from which "misled", "forward", "fail", "sin." The origin of this teminología should be attributed to the hunting culture, whose language survives in our own words "hit (or miss) the white 'frapper you but. Vyadh the Sanskrit term "transfer" is derived and vedhin Vedha ('Archer') and probably Vedha ("wise" in the sense of "penetrating"), deriving from grapevine ("knowing" or "find").

Chinese pitcher arrows

    As mentioned, the bow is the real weapon par excellence, proficiency in archery is for the king, the splendor of divinity for the priest. It is in his capacity as a Ksatriyas as Rama and the Bodhisattva can meet their feats of archery.The arc as a symbol of power lies with the design of the power of God, given by Gabriel to Adam, for your protection, as quoted sources behind Turks. It is from this point of view, the domain, as we better understand the widely extended rituals of shooting arrows at the Four Quadrants. "With the bow conquer the regions." In the Jataka Kurudhamma (J II. 372) we learn that the kings in a triennial festival "used to adorn themselves with great magnificence, and dress like Gods ... standing in the presence of Yakkhas Cittarâja, shooting at the four corners arrows painted with flowers. "

skylight framed by two bows

In Egypt, the arrows shot into the four quadrants was part of the training ritual of the pharaohs. It seems that this ceremony has aimed to define the power of Horus to launch, as the sun, its rays to the four parts of the world. In the relief from Karnak and firing is represented, led by hours and Seth. This ritual is accompanied, or may perhaps replace one in which freedom to four birds flying into the four quadrants, the bird and arrow are equivalent symbols. In China, the birth of a real successor, the Master of the Archers' with a bow of mulberry wood and wild Rubus six arrows, fired straight to Heaven, Earth, and for the Four Quadrants "(Li Chi X .2.17), the same thing was done in Japan.

Forbidden City of Beijing with four doors in four directions

It seems that this ritual of shooting the four quadrants and a center set belongs to the founding of the city rite and territorial takeovers. For example, after the fall of the Toltec capital of Tula, led by Xolotl chichimecas reached the valley of Mexico, there went up a hill Yócotl Xolotl shooting four arrows with all his might to the four parts of the world, west, east, north and south. This fact is represented in the Codex pictographically Xolotl (Dibble 1980) The structure of the Forbidden City of Beijing, has a specific provision for this form of foundation.In it there are four doors in the four cardinal points and a bow-shaped channel crossed by five bridges that symbolize the four arrows at the ends over the fifth center.

Arc-shaped channel of the "forbidden city" of Beijing and five bridges represent the five arrows

  The archetype of the ritual that involves the dominance is obviously solar. In Hindu narratives, the king shot four arrows reflecting separate archery supernatural in which all four quadrants are penetrated and virtually secured by the discharge of a single dart. This exploit, known as the "penetration of the ball" is described in the Jataka Sarabhanga, which is attributed to the Bodhisattva Jotipâla, the "Guardian of Light" and "unerring shot."


      This is clearly a statement of the doctrine of "thread of spirit" (sutratma), in accordance with which the sun, while attachment point, these worlds threaded itself through the four quadrants, with the thread spirit, like gems in a line. The arrow is the equivalent of the 'needle', and you could say that the four quadrants are "stitched together and their common center and corresponds to the eye of the needle tip or feathers, or the notch of the arrow which is tied the thread. In ordinary practice an arrow leaves no visible trace of their passage. It can be seen, however, that an arrow with a thin wire attached to it can be fired through an otherwise impassable chasm; through this thread can stretch a stronger line, and so on until it is overcome by arope, so the symbolism of archery can be combined with the "bridge." The principle is the same in the case of modern life-saving, where it triggers a string, in this case with a firearm, from the beach to a sinking ship, and through this string can be run a "line-of-life" stronger.

Family deity

In the same way Dante's Divine Comedy refers to the eternal value target, "And there now, as to the press pointed out, the power that leads bowstring, which leads to a happy white discharge whomever" . It must refer to the practice of archery as a "sport" in Japan today, making use of a valuable book compiled by Mr. William Acker, the American pupil Ma Toshisuke Nasu, whose own teacher, Ichikawa Kojuro Kiyomitsu, "had actually seen the bow used in warfare, and who died in the arcade while wearing his bow at eighty years of age." The book is a translation of the instructions Toshisuke Nasa, with a commentary added. The extracts show how little has the character of mere sport recreation that involves the notion of sport in secular cultures:The legislation is the foundation of everything else in archery. When you take place before the lens to shoot, you must banish all thoughts of other people in your mind, and felt then that the issue of archery only concerns you ..! When you come back and your face toward the target simply do not measure it, but also concentrate on it ... you should not do that with the eyes only, mechanically, so to speak, you learn to do everything from the womb. "

Chinese Archery Treaty

And again: "For dozokuri is meant the well-established body position on the support provided by the legs. One must regard himself as similar to the Buddha Variocana (ie the sun), calm and without fear, and feel like you were, like him, in the center of the universe. "   In preparing to shoot, the major emphasis is placed on muscle relaxation and a state of calm that has to be obtained by regular breathing, just as in contemplative exercises, where the preparation is also seen to a "liberation" . Pointing (mikomo of Miru, view, and Komu, tighten) the archer simply does not look white, but "press-in or" force "inside" him his vision, as if anticipating the end to be achieved by the arrow itself. Breathing the goalkeeper should be regulated in order to concentrate the force of one in the pit of the abdomen, then you can say that one has come to a real understanding of archery. "

Sign of the "Axis Mundi" in the center of the chamber of a samurai

This emphasis on deep breathing is visible factor Zen (Sanskrit dhyana), and the emphasis on the Spirit (Ki, Chinese chi, prana Sanskrit atman) in the same connection, is visible Taoist factor. Mr. Acker points out that all Japanese arts and exercises are designated as "Way" (michi; Chinese tao), ie, spiritual disciplines:

"... One can even say that this is especially so with archery and fencing as there are archers who will tell you that if you manage to hit the target or you do not succeed no matter in the least-that the real question is I exit the spiritual archery. " That is actually hitting the target must be the result of one's state of mind of one, an evidence, rather than the cause of his spiritual condition. "I regard only the action (which is" right "), not its results: the results of the action will not be your motive, nor contain you act '

Kanji Kyudo (way arc)

The consummation of the shot is in the release of the arrow ... Readiness, Preparedness, lifting the Arch, and Sustain Tensioning, but these are all preparatory activities. It all depends on release of the arrow unintentional and involuntary, made by the memorial in a shooting position of the whole ... the state in which the release of the arrow itself occurs when the breath of the archer appears to have the mystical power of the syllable "Om" ... At that time the position of goalkeeper is in perfect order, as if unaware of the departure of the arrow ... a shot that is said to leave behind a long resonance-moving arrow as serene as a breath, and, indeed, appearing to be almost a living thing ... Until the final moment one should not shake or body or the mind ...(So) Japanese archery is much more than a "sport" in the Western sense, belongs to Bushido, the Way of the Warrior.In addition, the Seven Roads are based on principles spontaneous, and not on mere reasoning:"Having enough tension,No "tires" anymore, but "leads"-what"Quietly, without grasping"The arc should never knowWhen the arrow has to leave. "


The actual release of the arrow, as the contemplative, whose over Dhyana samadhi of the raptus contemplatio takes place suddenly in truth, but almost inadvertently, is spontaneous, and as it incauzada. If all preparations have been made correctly, the arrow, like a homing pigeon, find your own target, just as the man who, when part of the world tied up in the act, (Krtakrtya, Katam Karaniyam), having done what was to be Indeed, it would be pointless to ask what will become or where to go, but will inevitably find the bull's eye, and passing through the door of the sun, enter the empyrean beyond the "fortress" of the sky.


One looks like how a traditional society in all activities necessary may also be the Way, and that in such a society there is nothing profane, a condition which has to be reversed in secular societies, where nothing is sacred. We thus see that even a sport can also be a "yoga", and how active and contemplative lives, the man outside and inside can be unified in a single act of being themselves, which both cooperate.

Japanesse Archery

  Homage to you, oh carry arrows                   
and you, oh archers, homage
!Homage to you, O Apollo, and to                   
Now ye doers of arches! "

Taittirôya Samhita IV. 5.3.2. and 4.2..

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