Talk:Pentagram

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Recursive references?[edit]

Not sure what the point is of using an article for several references which is itself an earlier version of this very Wiki article? (knowledgerush.com) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Infinitysnake (talkcontribs) 06:19, 7 October 2009 (UTC)

Gone now -- Cheers, Steelpillow (Talk) 18:27, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
Actually reference 8, [http://merlinravensong2.tripod.com/the-pentagram.html], also appears to be recursive, as it claims to be based on a wikipedia article, presumably an older version of this one. Of course I didn't check when this reference was added so it could be more recent than your deletion last year. --AntonChanning (talk) 15:54, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

Too much Pythagoreanism?[edit]

For an article on the pentagram, it seems to me that the Pythagoreans section goes too far into matters that do not directly relate to the pentagram. What do others think? Finell (Talk) 06:17, 19 October 2006 (UTC)

Separate article for math[edit]

When I hear "pentagram", I think of a geometric figure. Since this article is officially identified as part of the WikiProject Occult, perhaps the article should be split, with the math in a separate article. Generally, I've noticed that occultists and mathematicians often do not get along all that well. Comments, anyone? Finell (Talk) 06:22, 19 October 2006 (UTC)

Okay, try this moved content Pentagram (geometry). Not great, but a start. (Nothing removed from here so far) Alternatingly we could create Pentagram (symbol) for all the cultural BS, I mean knowledge. Tom Ruen 05:27, 20 October 2006 (UTC)
Just because an article is identified as being of interest to a wikiproject doesn't mean that it is the exclusive interest or property of that wikiproject. It just means some group of people have said "we think this article is of interest to us and we'd like to improve it if it needs any improvements". A pentagram is a pentagram and if it is of interest to both mathematicians and occultists then that's just the nature of the beast. In fact it also happens to be of interest to folklorists, vexilologists and others, are we expecting a separate article for each? I really think you moved a far too fast splitting this article up. You didn't wait for any kind of consensus on what constitutes a major change to the article. You didn't tag the article giving warning of the split and wait for discussion. I shall revert the move, and if you want this split then go through the proper procedure of adding a template, waiting for discussion, etc.
See Wikipedia:Template_messages/Merging_and_splitting.
Thanks, Fuzzypeg 23:40, 23 October 2006 (UTC)
Oh, and Occultists and mathematicians get along fine. I am an occultist and I work with several mathematicians. Mathematicians in my experience have wide interests and are normally intrigued by cultural as well as mathematical ideas. Fuzzypeg 23:46, 23 October 2006 (UTC)
Okay, I apologize for the quick action. The Pentagram (geometry) content-move is still out there without links, whether to be deleted or left lost. I don't see much point mixing math and culture, but I'll equally admit the math content is half-baked anyway. I'll let it be. I'll keep a link to Wikipedia:Template_messages/Merging_and_splitting for future reference. Tom Ruen 00:10, 24 October 2006 (UTC)

Christian usage and its end of usage[edit]

How could it be mentioned that the appropriate symbol for Roman Catholics to use is the Marian star? Just let me know on my talk page. JBogdan 21:04, 31 December 2006 (UTC)

This is more appropriate to the Five-pointed star article. The Marian Star article incorrectly mentions pentagrams, when I believe five-pointed stars are intended. I've fixed the Marian Star article. Fuzzypeg 04:40, 8 January 2007 (UTC)

"Unfair criticism" of Mormon pentagrams[edit]

I've removed a sentence that sounds un-encyclopedic, as it expresses a value judgement (see WP:NPOV):

Because of the more recent obscurity of these symbols, the use of these morning stars has been occasionally and unfairly criticized as use of "satanic" and "occult" symbols, as they are sometime associated in today's pop culture.

I don't see the need for this sentence at all, since it seems to only be addressing the concerns of a small and insignificant minority. There is no rational reason to equate Mormon symbols with Satanism unless you subscribe to the rather rabid idea that anyone who expresses their love of God in a slightly different manner from your own is in fact a baby-sacrificing devil-worshipper. Wikipedia doesn't need to waste its space on such insignificant and extremist views, except in the appropriate articles (Religious persecution etc). The origins of the Mormon pentagram are clearly explained, and Satanism doesn't need to come into it. Fuzzypeg 22:38, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

While your argument would be sound in a sound world, the reality on the ground is not quite as simple. A good chunk of the Bible Belt and the wider fundamentalist mainline Christian world does regard the world's 12 million Mormons in this kind of extreme contemptuous manner, and Mormons can be resultingly very sensitive about defamation. As you are ideally correct that we need not cater to religious persecution, I agree that perhaps it is better for the sentence to be removed. But don't misconstrue such an issue as small and insignificant when it's anything but. - Gilgamesh 03:59, 20 April 2007 (UTC)
Maybe I'm kicking a dead horse, as the sentence was removed, but Gilgamesh: If it may be very relevant generally that religious bigotry is foisted on Mormons ;) it is completely irrelevant to this article. --Narfnarfsillywilly 00:02, 30 October 2007 (UTC)

I still don't like the current wording for two reasons 1. It implies that mormons kept the symbol whereas 'mainstream christians' didn't. Currently no symbol is used by the mormon church, cross star or what not. 2. It is too short and doesn't include the mason's use of the star (a religious order that mormons were afiliated with) or the US governments use of it (Also afilliated with masons.) The star was an important symbol for colonial america and atributing it all to mormons seems uninformed.12.206.60.130 (talk) 22:40, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

You seem to be saying two things:
  1. that mormons no longer use this symbol in newly-built architecture. That could be conveyed with a very minor wording change.
  2. that Freemasonry and the US government both employ the symbol of the pentagram, and that the pentagram was an important symbol for the colonial US. Remember that a pentagram Pentagram.svg is different from a five-pointed star Five-pointed star.svg. This assertion would need some supporting references.
I think the wording at the moment is quite fair to Mormons, and it does point out that the symbol derives from mainstream Christianity (implying that Christians who criticise their use of this symbol are probably just ignorant). What do you think? Fuzzypeg 02:33, 9 April 2008 (UTC)

Venus-pentagram drift and the rule of Aanipada[edit]

I've removed some recently added text that looks like original research, and doesn't seem correct. The removed text is:

This pentagram rotates one point of 73 degrees in 243 years being 61 leap days and 12 drift days (2 days per 40 years). In 600 years the conjunction point has rotated 180 degrees as 150 leap days and 30 drift days. Thus a full circle was regarded as 1200 egyptian years (1199 Julian and 5 days) before realizing 5x243 years = 1215 years. So sadly, in this way the useful tool that a pentagram with zodiac is for calculating astronomy has become accused of paganism and cursed as being Wicca wile the useles Venus symbol of 8 points for 8 years is regarded as a meer writing symbol or decor.

And:

Since Venus has an 8-year cycle, the 80-year rule of Ur's first king Aanipada is ruled by or measured by Venus (2207-2127 BC). The 243-year rotation of the Venus pentagram can be overlaid in short Genesis as the end of his rule. This means the rule of Aanipada began with the birth of Serug and so supports the concept the king's name is Reu Aanipada the son of Peleg Mesannepada.

Now it would be good to have a discussion of the gradual drift of the pentagram traced on the zodiac by the venus-sun conjunctions. There is indeed a drift, however I'm pretty sure the figures of 600 years and 1200 years don't come into it. I could stand corrected, but I figured this out myself a while ago, and there weren't any round numbers! Also, the calculation should be simplified to avoid leap days and drift days, and simply use the time for a sidereal year: 365.256363051 days. Given venus' synodic period of 583.9211 days, we should be able to figure it out pretty precisely:

We know venus describes a pentagram in five synodic periods. That's 5 x 583.9211 days = 2919.6055 days.
In sidereal years, that's 7.993305 years, or 2.4437 days short of 8 full years.

If it had been a perfect 8 years then the pentagram would be precise, but it's not. It's short by 2.410213 degrees, and each eight years we can add another 2.410213 degrees to that error. So for the point to drift a full 360 degrees around the circle will take 149.3644 cycles.

149.3644 cycles * 7.993305 years/cycle = 1193.9152 years

i.e. the drift will get right round the circle in nearly 1194 years. I don't understand other parts of this, such as how the julian calendar comes into an egyptian year (it doesn't!), nor how this led to Venus being accused of paganism! The Aanipada info seems similarly unlikely, and it's not written so I can make head or tail of it. Who suggested this about Aanipada, and is there anything you could point us to to read that will clarify what you mean? Fuzzypeg 08:21, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

Rotation of Venus pentagram[edit]

Why is it practice for you to remove before you question, on the mere premise it doesn't seem to be to you. I would like to see most members return data they wiped out if they are shown how it is true. But i think this is a case where being rebelliously self-willed comes first, and so giving people the self-appointed right to rule others.

I would like to see if you could just bear with me, and follow a thought. You delight in all your detailed decimal fractions proving ignorant that 4000 years ago no culture is going to be using fractions. It is common knowledge if you bother learing from anyone at all that Venus is regarded as a 584-day calendar (not 583.92 nor anyother lengthy decimal you wish to "correct" that too). That calendar is likewise known to be in Egypt and Maya as 8 egypitian years. (8x365 days) Leap days were not yet recognized by these cultures. This autmatically makes Venus 2 leap days short of every 8 years (5 synodic orbits). Then ignored by these ancients is that in 40 calendar years x365 days (5x8 years) that the Venus date of these 25 orbits (5x5 orbits) will DRIFT two dates back, so 2 drift dates and 10 leap days are 12 Julian dates. No ancient cultures used fragments, they used ATONEMENTS which means corrections. If you go back every 40 years you will have a drift of a month in 600 years of egyptian calendar which itself has drifted 150 leap days. This 180 days is half a year. That is why the 1200-year calendar if you do your research on calendars does exist and it has to be Venus, no other planet. It cannot be 12-year Jupiter whose 7 orbits are 83 years not 84 years. An example of 600 years of 365 days (minus 30 days) is 2369 BC Jan 6 to 1770 BC July 10, another 180 days back will then be 570 BC Jan 11. Get an astronomy program and go see it, dont just say you dont think it true. The 243-year Venus is also known to astronomers. Or are you going to say the Chicago Planetarium doesn't know anything because youre Australian. A conjunction of 2370 BC Dec 27 occurs again on 2127 BC Dec 27. A conjunction on 2029 BC July 1 occurs again on 1786 BC July 1. No one lives 1215 years (5x 243 years) they arent going to see the fractional differences. For you to say 1194 years you are ignoring the 8-year cycle as a calendar, which ancients would not do, 1200 calendar years are 150x 8years, but because they are years without leap days they drift back in Julian dates by 300 leap days, and as stated before the planet position drifts back 30 days per 600 years giving the 360 day retreat. This is why 1200 egyptian years falls in 1199 years, and it is why 1216 egyptian years falls in 1215 years, it has not deserted the 8-year calendar, but YOU have deserted it. You act as if they used your method of fractional math. I would like to know whether your fratcions for astronomy are calculated by you or taken from already recorded modern knowledge. So how is it that you some how expect these same ancient people to use your fractions that 1000 years of scholars had to calculate before you come along and disagree on how it was done 4000 years ago. Venus is given the same Julian date in 1215 years (5x 243 years) as a Sothic method. But the 1199 year method is 1200 egyptian years which occurs 16 years earlier and thus a date difference of 4 leap days. Has detailed algebraic math and geometrical math cuased you to forget simple math?

No offense intended, but you didn't explain what you meant very clearly at all. From what you wrote there is nothing to suggest that the drift you are talking about is the miscalculation of ancients rather than the actual drift of the pentagram's points.
Part of the problem is that you haven't clearly specified what you mean by a number of things: drift days, for instance. And I still don't understand why you're talking in terms of Julian years (365 days) and leap days when describing the Egyptian calendar, which was 360 days and 5 or 6 festival days each year (they had pretty damn good time reckoning, and their years certainly didn't drift as much as you seem to be saying, see [1]. The drift over a period of 1200 calendar years would be measured in ?minutes?, certainly not years!).
Again, I'll ask: is there a source for this information that you could point me to? You may well be right with some of what you're trying to say, but you're not managing to get it across. For instance, you mention the 243-year Venus. The 243-year Venus what? If I could read the original articles you're basing this on, I might be able to figure these things out.
I live in New Zealand, not Australia, and despite popular conception the blood doesn't all run to our brains as we dangle off the underside of the globe here, because gravity pulls towards the Earth. My nationality has, in fact, nothing to do with how long Venus takes to do its dance in the sky.
The calculations I gave were my own, based on the sidereal year: 365.256363051 days, and venus' synodic period of 583.9211 (which I didn't figure out myself). Don't be alarmed by my use of real numbers (numbers containing fractions). It actually makes the arithmetic much simpler than trying to carry around "leap days" and "drift days" etc. I didn't put my calculations into the article, since they could of course be wrong, and that would constitute original research, which doesn't cut it for Wikipedia. I note that my results are sufficiently close to your figures that it suggests your figures are just rounded-up (less precise) versions of the same values I derived.
Now, until I see your sources, I can't conclude that this is anything other than your own original research. So far I feel completely vindicated in having removed the material.
Oh, and please check out WP:CIVIL and WP:AGF. Thanks, Fuzzypeg 05:22, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

Magic Square Formula[edit]

8 1 6
3 5 7
4 9 2

In the next few days, I'm going to add a category about how the pentagram relates to a magic square. Please allow me to leave the text for the magic square here so that it is readily available for me when I need it for the article. Thanx! DRosenbach (Talk | Contribs) 02:03, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

Done DRosenbach (Talk | Contribs) 14:21, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

Judaism section (moved to talk page)[edit]

The pentagram is the key to figuring out a magic square which possesses an odd number of squares, and thus is heavily integrated in Jewish mysticism and numerology.[citation needed] It is because of this that King Solomon's battle shield was purportedly emblazoned with this design. Below is a step-by-step explanation of how the pentagram is the solution key, along with two magic squares exhibiting the proper placement of numbers to form the solution, following the various steps and alternatives.[citation needed]

8 1 6
3 5 7
4 9 2
  • As depicted in the diagram at right, the first number should be placed in the center square of the top row.
  • The next number is placed diagonally up towards the right, corrolating with the first line drawn in a pentagram. Because this is an invalid option (because the number 1 is in the top row), the alternative is to proceed to the lowest available square one column to the right, corresponding the second drawn line of a pentagram.
  • The next nember is, as before, placed diagonally up and towards the right. However, because this is again an invalid option, and the alternative is also invalid (because we are in the right-most column), the secondary alternative is placed in the left-most square one row up, corresponding with the third drawn line of a pentagram.
10 23 1 20 15
22 5 19 14 9
4 18 13 8 21
17 12 7 25 3
11 6 24 2 16
  • The next number is, as before, placed diagonally up and towards the right. However, because this spot is taken, the alternative is to place the number in the bottom-most square of the same row, corresponding to the fourth drawn line of a pentagram. Note that this does not follow the invalid rule above, because whereas before there was no square present, this time the diagonally related square exists but is occupied. This corresponds to the fourth drawn line of a pentagram.
  • Should this last placement rule not be executable because the lowest square in the column to the right be occupied, the number is to be placed in the bottom-most square of the same column. This corresponds to the fifth and final drawn line of a pentagram.

It should be noted that the pentagram drawn in point-center rotated 20%, in effect producing an inverted pentagram. The initial pentagram was drawn closer to what would be considered today as an inverted pentagram, as can be seen in many of the pictures included on this page, while the modern pentagram was probably flipped for aesthetic reasons.[citation needed]

Because of this symbolism to Jewish mysticism and numerology, the pentagram was the official seal of the city of Jerusalem for a time.[1]


Moving this section to the talk page--it needs some serious work, sources, and (for me at least) some assurance that it's not WP:OR. Justin Eiler 21:56, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

DRosenbach, the information you've added is conspicuously devoid of references, for any of your assertions other than that regarding the seal of the city of Jerusalem. Also, the method of producing a pentagram from the 3x3 square seems highly contrived, with a number of special rules for when you are or aren't allowed to consider a "move" of the lines of a pentagram. Not that your rules produce a pentagram anyway. I got out my pen and paper and followed as closely as I could, and the resulting figure doesn't even remotely suggest a pentagram. Your selection of rules is so complex, you should just about be able to form an image of the Sydney Opera House or Elvis Presley by following such complex rules, but do they actually demonstrate anything about the nature of the magic square? Similar things have been done with the Bible, applying vastly convoluted rules to rearrange the letters of biblical texts and then exercising a bit of free association to read meanings or prophecies into the results. You can find just about whatever you want in any diagram or text if you look hard enough, but that doesn't mean it was actually there before you forced it in through your own ingenious choice of rules.

Another point I might mention is that while you may have managed to form a pentagram two-points-up (though what you did differently I don't know), starting with a different magic square would presumably produce a one-point-up version. The fact that you don't seem to have considered this makes it seem even more like a half-baked idea. And what's the significance of the 5-wide magic square? That produces a quite different pattern, and I can't imagine you finding a pentagram in both.

Look, if you can give a citation of the published author who suggests this connection between the pentagram and the magic square, then we might (if they seem reputable, and not a crank) include some of this section. Otherwise it is clearly original research, and has to go. Fuzzypeg 22:04, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

The secondary fact that enantiomers of my purported magic square number placement pattern also work does not affect the validity of the intial placement pattern, because of the nature of the symmetry of a mathematical grid. This point was considered, but not included, because I felt it would led to confusion, in addition to the fact that this was how I was taught the solution, by first placing the first number in the center of the top row and proceeding as explained.
Secondly, the pentagram is not formed by lines drawn on the magic square itself follwing the consecutive order of numbers when the problem is solved. The lines of the pentagram form the proper course of action each time you proceed to place the next number within the grid (see last paragraph for elucidation). First choice is to proceed diagonally up to the right, second to proceed down (within this new column) to the bottom, and so on. Thus, it is not nearly possible to form sketches of either the Sydney Opera House or Elvis Presley with the process of line-drawing that I was suggesting (again, as a guide to next number placement, not as a line drawn through the consecutive numbers within an entire magic square; but if you happen to have arrived at pictures of these entities via your endeavors, perhaps this deserves some more investigation and perhaps even a section within those respective articles.
Thirdly, this has absolutely nothing to do with the Bible; I believe you are confusing ends and means. The magic square problem was not designed to accompany the pentagram, but rather, I suggest that the pentagram originated as a design because it is, albeit cleaned-up and spit-polished version of, the solution to solving the puzzle. You cannot deny that this method allows for proper placement of numbers to complete any odd-numbered magic square. Additionally, the 5x5 magic square was not included, as you have suggested above, to show an actual pentagram when the numbers have been traced consecutively, but rather to exhibit the proper placement rules without the constraints of a super-small magic square restricting almost every move because of its lack of valid options for following through with first-choice placement directives. (As an aside, my tracing of the 5x5 as you thought I meant t oproceed produced neither the Sydney Opera House nor Elvis Presley, but rather a surprisingly inaccurate map of the NYC F train route.) The fact that the pentagram produced looks a bit hieroglyphic does not invalidate its purpose nor its origin as I suggest. The Roman alphabet letter A is derived from other alphabets, for example. The Greek alpha from which it originated was from the Phoenician aleph, which in turn was from the Hebrew aleph, which in turn was from a little sketch of an ox head. Hence, a cleaned-up and spit-polished version of an ox head for those who want to use an indefinite article but have trouble drawing horns.
In all seriousness, I can understand how you feel about what I sense as your "feeling that this is your article" to some extent, being that I can see you have been involved with this page since at least January of 2006, and someone comes along and puts in things that you think are made up out of thin air. But I assure you that what I wrote has a source, and it shall be included.
In case you would like, I will let you know how to draw the pentagram to fit both the magic square solution moves as well produce an actual pentagram. Draw the circle with clock-face numbers around the periphery, outside of the cirle. Now, within the circle, and making all points on the circumference, make a point at 7 o'clock. Draw a line to connect it to a dot at 12:30. Then draw a line from there to connect it to a point at 4 o'clock. Then draw a line to 9 o'clock. Then draw a line from there to connect to 2 o'clock. If you connect 2 o'clock with the initial 7 o'clock, you will produce a pentagram. Each line drawn corresponds to the step or alternative or secondary alternative, etc. when attempting to place the next consecutive number within a magic square. DRosenbach (Talk | Contribs) 13:51, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
In all seriousness, I can understand how you feel about what I sense as your "feeling that this is your article" to some extent Okay, that's gone RIGHT past WP:AGF and into an accusation that Fuzzypeg is violating WP:OWN. Stop, please. It's insulting. When you have a reliable source for what it is you are trying to add, then add that material to the article (with the source). But, until then, it's going to be disputed as original research, and removed. Please see WP:RS.--Vidkun 14:26, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
[I]t is important to consider whether a desirable result could be obtained by working with the editor, instead of against him or her - regardless of whether he or she "owns" the article or not. This is from the very same WP:OWN page to which you directed me. How could the say regardless of whether he or she owns the page"? Because, this page is not referring to someone actualy owning a page, but rather, referring to a common sentiment that may be present among some about others. Thus, it is entirely valid for me to similarly refer to Fuzzypeg "feeling that this is [his] article," because I placed said phrase within quotes, thus referring to a similarly common sentiment, rather than making an existential assertion that this page is, in fact, owned by Fuzzypeg.
Additionally, I was not in violation of WP:AGF, because in tandem with the statements I made in the previous paragraph, I was not insinuating that Fuzzypeg's actions possessed malicious intent when he opposed my additions to the page, but rather that he was merely being, what I sensed was, protective. Why did he write about all the ways he contested my information if the issue was merely that I lacked a source? DRosenbach (Talk | Contribs) 23:52, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
The tone of this discussion is getting a bit ridiculous, and it's chewing up a lot of talk page, which makes it a pain for anyone who tries to read through it. I'll simplify my position: I feel (for various reasons) highly suspicious of the unreferenced information you added, so I removed it. If you want to add it back to the article, please include citations of appropriate reliable sources. Your lengthy arguments aren't convincing; what you need is a citation. Remember that the threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth. As to your comments about ownership, yes I've taken an interest in this article, I have made significant edits to it, and it is on my watchlist. However I don't feel this is my own article any more than I feel the other 310 pages on my watchlist are "my own". I'm being critical, not territorial, and there is no need to psychoanalyse me when I have clearly explained what my criticisms are in terms of Wikipedia policy. Fuzzypeg 02:14, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

I think we can cut to the chase with a simple question. DRosenbach, was this your work, or another person's work? Justin Eiler 02:18, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

OK...here's the source. This information was given over to me by Joe Slamowitz of the Lower East Side of Manhattan. He was taught this method of magic square formation in a private tutorial by Lionel Ziprin in 1962 or 1963. Is this verified enough? DRosenbach (Talk | Contribs) 20:21, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
So the information is verified as far as you're concerned, but it's not verifiable by anyone else. An encyclopedia can't really state some famous person as a source for information when there's no known record of them saying it. Can you find the assertions in any of Ziprin's writings?
I've been in this situation before, wanting to publish something shown to me by one of my Qabalah teachers, but having no published sources to cite. I just had to content myself with the fact that there is an inner tradition that will never become exoteric, and will continue to be transmitted in one form or other regardless of the fact that it remains obscure and unpublished. Fuzzypeg 21:10, 4 March 2007 (UTC)

Hmm...So a non-published interview is not valid source material? Would this be less of a contentious issue if I placed this magic square info in Ziprin's article with only a link to that page placed on the pentagram page? I mean, not that verifiability is any less required on other pages, but perhaps it being included in Ziprin's article makes it less controversial, as perhaps Ziprin himself exudes a certain ambiguity as to allow for some information only verified in a personal unpublished interview with a student of his to be allowed a place on his own page. DRosenbach (Talk | Contribs) 14:49, 5 March 2007 (UTC)

I'll quote what it says at the top of the attribution policy page: "This page in a nutshell: All material in Wikipedia must be attributable to a reliable, published source." It doesn't get much clearer than that. Fuzzypeg 00:10, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

That's a joke...every page has unattributed material. DRosenbach (Talk | Contribs) 13:40, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

Then take it up with an admin. If it hasn't been published in a reliable source, it's not usable here. Additionally, what is in other articles not what is being discussed HERE; we are trying to make sure THIS article is properly referenced, so, your point that there are violations of policy in other articles is useless.--Vidkun 17:51, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Let me further quote the attribution policy page: "Although everything in Wikipedia must be attributable, in practice not all material is attributed. Editors should provide attribution for quotations and for any material that is challenged or likely to be challenged, or it may be removed. The burden of evidence lies with the editor wishing to add or retain the material. If an article topic has no reliable sources, Wikipedia should not have an article on it." Bold emphasis is mine.--Vidkun 17:54, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

Flags[edit]

I don't see any flags. Missing? My browser? What? IPSOS (talk) 23:51, 1 May 2007 (UTC)

I don't know of any flags with pentagrams, but of course many flags have five-pointed stars. That article has a whole gallery of examples. And the section Pentagram#Classification shows the difference between a pentagram and a five-pointed star. Jaho (talk) 14:07, 1 June 2011 (UTC)
The section cited now mentions (indirectly) the flag of Morocco and the flag of Ethiopia – one more than I was aware of. —Tamfang (talk) 17:47, 9 June 2011 (UTC)

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight[edit]

I had trouble translating a word from the middle english version I have of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (in the section relating to the pentangle), and I feel the translation given here is misleading. "Frankness" implies honesty, whereas the word "fraunchyse" (Everyman edition, Orion: London, 2005, p.194) is translated better as "Nobility of character, magnanimity; liberality, generosity; a noble or generous act"[2]. I'm not comfortable with using the wiki system, so if anyone else feels like making this change, please do. Personally, I feel 'liberality' or even 'nobility' would be a more accurate definition.

I've changed "frankness" to "noble generosity". Thanks for the heads-up! Fuzzypeg 23:06, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Order of the Eastern Star[edit]

OK, the example you chose is not a pentagram. There are plenty of other examples that are: [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] Will you do the revert for me please? I'm on dial-up at the moment and I really can't be bothered. Fuzzypeg 07:05, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

Redundancy[edit]

Latin SALVS is a direct Latin translation of Greek υγιεια, so SALVS is actually the same Pythagorean or neo-Pythagorean amulet, and not really a specifically-Christian symbol (see Image:Crotona Pentagram ring.png ). Also, the Virgin Mary is more often represented by a five-pointed star than a pentagram. Traditionally, the Pentagram was actually rather rarely used as a real Christian symbol (as opposed to being used folklorically, occultistically, or speculatively by Christians). AnonMoos 20:24, 8 August 2007 (UTC)

Venus creating pentagram patterns[edit]

This sentence needs evidence to be sufficiently deemed as true, otherwise it may have to be removed.

"When viewed from Earth, successive inferior conjunctions of Venus plot a nearly perfect pentagram shape around the zodiac every eight years."

88.105.93.103 13:22, 24 September 2007 (UTC)

Looks like the precession of points on the zodiac of successive earth-oppositions is about 2/5 of an orbit. I'll add a graphic for fun! Tom Ruen 20:43, 24 September 2007 (UTC)
Info is here. The calculation is trivial, and I've done it myself, based on the figures given in Wikipedia: The synodic period of Venus with the sun is 583.92 days, and the earth's sidereal year is 365.25636042 days. Divide the first by the second and we find that venus' synodic period is 1.599 years. The earth travels 360° round the sun in 1 year, so in 1.599 years it travels 575.5°, or one full revolution plus 215.5°. Or, approximately, one full revolution plus 3 fifths (3/5 of a circle is 216°). It's that 3/5 that gets us from one point of the "pentagram" to the next. Add on the next synodic period and we find we've gone 3 full revolutions plus one fifth, which completes the second "line of the pentagram". And so on, until after 5 synodic periods we find the earth has travelled 2.4 degrees short of 8 full revolutions, marking a good approximation of a pentagram around the sun, and taking 7.9933 years, or approximately 2 1/2 days short of 8 years.
I realise I'm describing this all in terms of the earth's position around the sun, as measured against the backdrop of stars (the zodiac); but the article is written in terms of a pentagram traced by venus's position against the backdrop of stars. This should become clear if you consider that at every synod venus is exactly aligned with the sun, i.e. it's position relative to us (and the sun's position relative to us) is exactly 180° from our position relative to the sun.
The place I first read about this was here. Fuzzypeg 23:27, 24 September 2007 (UTC)

NPOV[edit]

Looking back (in addition to this that I'll discuss) to Unfair criticism of Mormon pentagrams, it really seems that people have a difficult time being neutral about Mormonism :)

Now under the Religious Symbolism->Christianity section: "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has traditionally used pentagrams and five-pointed stars in Temple architecture, particularly the Nauvoo Illinois Temple[13] and the Salt Lake Temple. These symbols derived from traditional morning star pentagrams that are no longer commonly used in mainstream Christianity."

This word appended to Christianity, "mainstream", is not neutral, and it isn't neutral over a point that is outside the scope of this article besides. This article has concern with what religions employ what symbolism in the Pentagram - not whether any of those religions may be (supposedly) "mainstream" or (supposedly) not. "Mainstream" being irrelivant to the article besides, if there is a mainstream, there are some in the mainstream and some who are not in the mainstrem; and as this mention of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) is coupled with mention that their used symbolism is apparently not "mainstream", it implies that Mormonism is not in the mainstream of Christianity. Now that may be true, but the arguments for and against that idea are very conflicted (or not neutral), and whatever the case may be with that, as I said, this article has no concern with what religions may be mainstream or not. But while that conflict of ideas has been implied, please allow me to say this. I'm a Mormon. I believe Jesus Christ is my Savior. It is disheartening to me to read and hear all over the place (speaking generally of information in this world) arguments that I (as I am a Mormon) am not Christian. Bogus! First, look at the title of our church: "The Church of Jesus Christ..". Oh, Mormons aren't traditional or mainstream Christians. Actually, that may be true as relating to more widely established Christian traditions or doctrines of our day. Nevertheless, a person of any religion which claims assent to Christ and authority under Him is likely to think that they have it right and no one else does - and as this is naturally the position of my church, well, I'd naturally think that whatever the declared "mainstream" of "Christianity" might think, my concept of Jesus is "right" or what should be the "mainstream". And I have no problem with any other religion declaring exactly what I just did, only for their religion - that is the right of religion, and as I said it's natural any Christian religion might do that. I would however in the interest of respect for the Mormon view ask anyone who argues or has heard the argument that Mormons are not Christians to please read this speech by one of the Mormon leaders on the topic. But as I also said, any of that is beside any point of this article. --Narfnarfsillywilly 00:02, 30 October 2007 (UTC)

Recent approval for U.S. military headstones[edit]

I'm not sure if it belongs in this article, or possibly elsewhere in Wikipedia (e.g. an article on neo-paganism), but the U.S. military recently (May 2007) approved the pentagram / pentacle as a religious symbol for military headstones.

-- Jmabel | Talk 05:13, 31 October 2007 (UTC)

Trauma center[edit]

In Trauma center, the Pentagram is the symbol used to activate the Healing Touch. Surely we could mention this in either this article or the series article? 67.171.165.4 (talk) 20:55, 23 June 2008 (UTC)

Possibly. What's 'Trauma center'? Is it notable? Do you have some reliable published sources to cite regarding their use of the pentagram? If so, then go for it! Fuzzypeg 02:01, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
It's a video game, Fuzzy. [9]--Vidkun (talk) 13:53, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
Ahem. In that case, I doubt their use of a pentagram is notable, since pentagrams appear in so many games and works of fiction (we're certainly not going to list them all!). The standard approach, I believe, with such trivia or pop culture information is to only include it if it has substantially shaped popular conceptions of the topic; i.e. if 'Trauma Center' has had a special role in changing people's common conceptions of what a pentagram is and does. A good test of notability is whether any scholarly work has been published on the subject of the pentagram as it appears in 'Trauma Center'. Fuzzypeg 21:30, 24 June 2008 (UTC)


I agree, while it is significant in the sense of the game, it is not for this article. I shall raise this issue in the appropriate area. One last question though, can we use pictures as sources? Because that's all I've got. 67.171.165.4 (talk) 04:56, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

To get an understanding of what you can and can't say based on your sources, the No original research policy is a good one to read. I believe (and remember, I haven't seen your image, nor do I know the game) that you could state that it appears in the game, and describe how it fits in, its role in game-play and so on. However you couldn't make any analysis of it or give any explanation of it that is not explicit in the game itself or any other documentation you have. And I would merely reference the game itself, rather than referencing an image, although you may want to use the image for illustration. It's probably better to discuss this at the game's article where you're intending to add this information; they may have their own ideas. Fuzzypeg 22:21, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Inversion of cross[edit]

Hi, I just reverted some good-faith changes by Sephiroth Storm which drew comparisons between the inverted pentagram and the inverted cross. The histories of the two symbols are quite separate, and similarities may now be seen between the two, but exactly what their relationship is needs to be worded a bit more carefully, I think. This was all uncited, and looks like WP:OR to me. If you can find a good source that discusses the connection between these two symbols, and add that in with citation, that would be great! Cheers, Fuzzypeg 10:09, 28 June 2008 (UTC)


WTF?[edit]

"A pentagram is also the most beautiful shape in existance as it contains 5 relations to the number phi 1.618 alos know as the Golden Ratio which is the most beautiful and perfect number in the universe."

Is this real or original research? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 70.113.81.76 (talk) 00:38, 6 September 2008 (UTC)

Definitely original research. I'll remove it.—Tetracube (talk) 22:38, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

pentagrams being inverted[edit]

the whole reason they call an inverted pentagram an inverted pentagram is because the non-inverted pentagram used to be a symbol representing the Pagan religion but the catholic church inverted it and said it was a symbol of the devil or Satan , thus causing them to stop using the symbol as there own for fear of being called a Satanist. the reason was an attempt to aliment all other religion but the true religion, (there's), they did it with other things as well like Poseidon's Trident and made it the pitch fork of the devil and Loki's trickery became a thing that the devil seems to use a lot. whether you believe me or not or if you want to add something. I really don't care much but this is what I've been told and heardWilliam.stowers (talk) 02:09, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

The inverted pentagram is from the 'two points up' alignment, being the 7 year orbit of venus reference?Text mdnp (talk) 00:10, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

Remarks from Star polygon[edit]

Somebody added this to the Star polygon article, but I think it belongs on Pentagram. I have no idea about where/whether it should go, this is not my field. Perhaps someone else can oblige?

It is the five-pointed star of occult masonry, the star with which Agrippa drew the human figure, the head in the upper point, the four limbs in the others. The flaming star, which, when turned upside down, is the hierolgyphic [sic] sign of the goat of Black Magic, whose head may be drawn in the star, the two horns at the top, the ears to the right and left, the beard at the bottom. It is the sign of antagonism and fatality. It is the goat of lust attacking the heavens with its horns." Levi, Eliphas (1861, translated 2001 by Aleister Crowley). The Key of the Mysteries.  Check date values in: |date= (help) Found at http://www.scribd.com/doc/9668236/The-Key-of-the-Mysteries-by-Levi, page 69.

-- Cheers, Steelpillow (Talk) 09:25, 21 June 2009 (UTC)

Pythagorean elements: help finding references[edit]

The article currently states that the letters ΥΓΙΕΙΑ "Hygieia" were applied to the points of the pentagram by the Pythagoreans, and that they attributed these letters as the initials of ύδωρ, Γαια, ίδέα (or ίερόν), έιλή and άήρ -- water, earth, spirit (literally 'idea' or 'a divine thing'), heat and air: i.e. the four elements plus spirit. This is a persistent rumour, but I strongly suspect it only arose as a theory much later, perhaps even in the 1700s or 1800s. The question of when this came about may be key in determining when the pentagram started being associated with the classical elements. I am trying to track down some better info on this and would appreciate any help anyone can give me. I want to establish:

  • Early references to the letters of ΥΓΙΕΙΑ being ranged around the points of the pentagram
  • Early references to the letters of ΥΓΙΕΙΑ standing for four elements plus spirit.

The leads I have found are as follows: first, a book by George Johnson Allman, Greek Geometry from Thales to Euclid (1889) p. 26 (cited by the Encyclopedia Britannica, 11th edn). Allman states

The triple interwoven triangle or Pentagram--star-shaped regular pentagon--was used as a symbol or sign of recognition by the Pythagoreans, and was called by them Health (ὑγιεία).

He provides a diagram of a pentagram with the letters placed outside the points, starting with υ at the top and continuing around counter-clockwise. In a footnote he gives sources:

Scholiast on Aristophanes, Nub. 609; also Lucian, pro Lapsu in Salut., s. 5, vol. 1., pp. 447, 8; ed. C. Jacobitz. That the Pythagoreans used such symbols we learn from Iamblichus (Vit. Pyth., c. xxxiii., 237 and 238). This figure is referred to Pythagoras himself, and in the Middle Ages was called Pythagorae figura. It is said to have obtained its special name from his having written the letters υ, γ, ι, θ (≈ ει), α, at its prominent vertices. We learn from Kepler (Opera Omnia, ed. Frisch, vol. v., p. 122) that even so late as Paracelsus it was regarded by him as the symbol of health. See Chasles, Histoire de Géométrie, pp. 477, sq.

One website offers further information: "Chasles (1875, p. 478-479) likewise lists these five letters, quoting Alstedius (Encyc. univ., 1620) and Kircher (Arithmologia, 1665)."

Thus we have several references, which I have followed up with the following results:

  • Lucian and the other ancients link the pentagram with Hygieia, but they don't break down the letters at all, nor mention 'elements'.
  • I've found the Kircher reference (though I struggle with the Latin): While Kircher ranges the letters around the pentagram, he doesn't mention any correspondence to the elements, from what I can make out.
  • I have not managed to obtain a copy of Alsted's Encyclopedia.
  • Michel Chasles' Historical view of the origin and development of methods in geometry is here, and I am still deciphering the French (a slow job for me). On pp. 478-9 he simply seems to quote what Kircher said. No mention of the elements that I can see.
  • The Kepler reference in "Astronomi Opera Omnia" (as far as I can tell with my very limited Latin) makes no mention of the elements.
A pythagorean ring from c. 525 BCE?

Raven Grimassi adds some curious assertions to this: Apparently a number of rings have been discovered at Crotona dating from c. 525 BCE with pentagrams inscribed on the stones (Grimassi, "Wiccan Magick" p. 52). He provides an accompanying illustration from a 1647 book by V. Catari, supposedly of one of these rings, and it shows an enlarged detail of the pentagram with not only ΥΓΙΕΙΑ but the Latin equivalent, SALUS written around it. The presence of Latin letters on a Pythagorean ring seems dubious to me, and I haven't managed to find any other source describing such a find. Elsewhere (http://mysticwicks.com/showthread.php?p=1519499) Grimassi states that Empedocles taught the concept of a fifth element along with the other four, and used a pentagram to depict this. As far as I have been able to find, Empedocles only ever mentioned four elements, and I have not been able to find any hint of a pentagram in connection with him. So I can make neither head nor tail of these claims.

If anyone can help by furnishing some pre-20th-century attestations that the initials ΥΓΙΕΙΑ stand for the elements plus spirit, I would really appreciate it. Best wishes, Fuzzypeg 01:50, 13 January 2010 (UTC)

(I don't have an account and want to contribute -- apologies for bad form. -- I believe that while pentagram-points-assigned-to-elements may be ancient, and pentagram-combined-with-ΥΓΙΕΙΑ is ancient, the specific associations between LETTERS and ELEMENTS on this page: http://www.cs.utk.edu/~mclennan/BA/PP.html are presented by the author as original work of his own, NOT the results of his research. So: "pentagram=HYGIEIA" => ancient. "pentagram => elements + 1" = probably ancient. "letters of HYGIEIA => initial letters of elements" => NOT ancient. That's a modern magician filling in the blanks, and trying to reconstruct an ancient prototype, a Hellenic alternative, to the Golden Dawn/Wiccan pentacle.) —Preceding unsigned comment added by 75.232.13.247 (talk) 19:14, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, that was my take on it as well, although I hadn't considered that the author of that page might have invented (discovered?) the link between letters and element names. That he would be the author actually makes a lot of sense, since when he describes historical background and labelling he gives quite solid references; when he gets to ascribing initials to elements the references are conspicuously absent. As much as I like this guy's work I think it's time to remove it from this article... Fuzzypeg 01:06, 17 March 2010 (UTC)
Update: Several more leads are supplied by this page. Fuzzypeg 05:38, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
...and this page gives referenced information on Greek elemental associations. Fuzzypeg 06:35, 13 January 2010 (UTC)

Baha'i symbols[edit]

I don't really understand why Machine Elf 1735 keeps removing the statement that the five-pointed star is the official symbol of the Baha'i Faith. The text is well sourced, and thus meets [[WP:V|verifiability]. The history of the edit is that the five-pointed star was in the article for a long time, and then an IP changed the text from five to nine (which is incorrect) and then another editor removed it completely from the article because it seemed that a nine-pointed star has nothing to do with the pentagram. But in fact it is the five pointed star is the official symbol of the Baha'i Faith, even if the nine-pointed star is more frequently. From the sources "“Strictly speaking the 5-pointed star is the symbol of our Faith, as used by the Báb and explained by Him. But the Guardian does not feel it is wise or necessary to complicate our explanations of the Temple by adding this.” " Regards, -- Jeff3000 (talk) 12:29, 3 October 2011 (UTC)

Right well, considering that you haven't restored the rest of you edit, which had nothing to do with Baha'i, I think you've underestimated you ability to understand. I wouldn't call it “well sourced” by any stretch of the imagination, but you've copied the one statement to be found which even mentions a five-pointed star; frankly, they're about the nine-pointed star. The second web page, a series of email, does not qualify as an WP:RS, however, the first cite to a primary source is acceptable in so far as it self-professes the faith. To that end, I have no problem if the entire quote is given, including the part about this being unwise and unnecessary: “But the Guardian does not feel it is wise or necessary to complicate our explanations of the Temple by adding this.”—Machine Elf 1735 15:32, 3 October 2011 (UTC)
They are talking about the Baha'i Temple building in that quote.--Truthseeker9901 (talk) 7:25, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Remove Wu-Xing?[edit]

As far as I know, Chinese never use pentagram to represent Wu-Xing before modern ages. The five elements were placed like an equilateral cross in old days, earth in the center, and other four on four directions. Yogomove (talk) 01:35, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

A circumscript pentagram is not a pentacle[edit]

Individual persons of various faiths but not so various levels of knowledge and experience often suggest very strange ideas of the supposed "difference" between a pentacle and pentagram. Many years ago, it was common for Wiccans to claim, "Satanists wear pentagrams, we wear pentacles," with the implication being that only the inverse pentagram was really a pentagram, and that an upright pentagram was actually called a pentacle. The idea that a pentacle is a circumscript pentagram was the next most common misconception I encountered, and was rather disappointed to see it endorsed by the OED. Both the "open" pentagram and circumscript pentagram are pentagrams, and a pentacle is a pentagram worn as jewelry or used as an altar tool, especially as a necklace; whether the ritual object / pendant depicts a circumscript or "open" pentagram matters not -- it's still a pentacle. In fact, the word "pentacle" may not even have originally referred to a pentagram/pentangle, but may have begun as a dimunitive of "pendant". The OED is not an occult reference, so in a way it's not surprising that they endorsed a common misconception over the obvious reality, but it doesn't mean Wikipedia has to make the same mistake. A circumscript pentagram is a circumscript pentagram, and a pentacle is a pentagram (circumscript or otherwise) used as a talisman or amulet (such as a pendant or altar tool); that this was not even mentioned alongside the misconception (that a pentacle is a circumscript or inverted pentagram) is a major deficiency that seriously harms the integrity of the article.

Also, any five-pointed star, including those of ancient Egypt and those appearing on the American flag, is a pentagram. --Þorstejnn (talk) 20:42, 9 June 2012 (UTC)

Overemphasizing of occult aspects[edit]

This is probably the most common hand drawn symbol to plainty represent a star. Every child draw those. The article clearly places too much weight on neopaganistic & occult uses. I think that the mystical aspects are esoterical stuff that most people would never associate to. --St. Nerol (talk) 22:22, 13 January 2013 (UTC)


See I'd argue the almost opposite. I came here because I was curious about how such a simple symbol (as you say everyone draws simple stars) gained the negative connotations and what exactly those connotations are supposed to be.
Brilliant, I found out all about all the "other" religious and meanings, but I've still not found out what I came for -what the occult association actually is: how it was used or why it was used, what "power", symbolism or association those occult groups relived the symbol had. etc.
If someone has been trying to play down occult associations within the article, it seems like they have gone to far. The negative connotations of the symbol aren't even mentioned in the introduction (I've just added a short mention), and there are obviously the unanswered questions.
Does anyone know any reputable sources these sections could be expanded from?

--Rushton2010 (talk) 23:20, 6 September 2013 (UTC)

I think the negative associations of the symbol have more to do with the negative stereotypes associated with modern paganism and Satanism than the symbol per se. These are covered in the (non-contemporary) witchcraft and Satanic ritual abuse articles. HelenOnline 07:31, 7 September 2013 (UTC)
The main pentagram ritual I am aware of is the lesser banishing ritual of the pentagram. HelenOnline 07:44, 7 September 2013 (UTC)
Pentagram entry in the Watkins Dictionary of Magic by Nevill Drury (2005): "A five-pointed star. The pentagram is an important symbol in western magic and represents the four elements surmounted by the spirit. It is regarded as a symbol of human spiritual aspirations when the point faces upwards; but is a symbol of bestiality and retrograde evolution when facing down. The pentagram is inscribed in the air at the four quarters during the banishing ritual of the Lesser Pentagram, a ceremonial purging of negative influences from the magical temple." HelenOnline 08:46, 7 September 2013 (UTC)

Incoherent introduction[edit]

The introduction is a little confused and contains incomplete sentences. (Is there any suitable template for this?) ––St. Nerol (talk) 22:29, 13 January 2013 (UTC)

I've removed the single sentence fragment and tried to make it a bit clearer. If would be useful if you could be specific about what confuses you or what you find confused in the wording. Huntster (t @ c) 23:05, 13 January 2013 (UTC)

note 17[edit]

note 17 is confusing because Crowley couldn't have translated anything in 2001, he'd been dead for 54 years. Is this the date of the book's re-publication?

173.180.102.130 (talk) 07:48, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

Okay, I think I've fixed the references in that section, based on what I could piece together from Worldcat.org. That book was originally published in French in 1859, translated by Crowley in 1939, and the old citation was referring to a 2002 repub (there doesn't appear to have been a 2001 repub, at least not that I could find). I'll try to fix up the other article references some other time, but let me know if anything else appears off about refs in that section. Huntster (t @ c) 14:29, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

Image of regular pentagram[edit]

I haven't measured the angles in the illustration of a regular pentagram, but it doesn't seem to be exactly regular to me. Isheden (talk) 09:18, 14 December 2013 (UTC)

Tetragram?[edit]

From http://www.ebay.com/itm/181468439544

"There is a Tetragram surrounded by inscriptions on one side and a pentagram on the other."

Both sides look like pentagrams to me... 82.42.161.70 (talk) 10:09, 24 July 2014 (UTC)

The lister simply didn't know what they were looking at. Notice the necklace inscription actually reads tetragrammaton, something completely different. Huntster (t @ c) 11:03, 24 July 2014 (UTC)