The circle is a universal symbol with extensive meaning. It represents the notions of totality, wholeness, original perfection, the Self, the infinite, eternity, timelessness, all cyclic movement, God ('God is a circle whose centre is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere' (Hermes Trismegistus)). As the sun, it is masculine power; as the soul and as encircling waters, it is the feminine maternal principle. "It implies an idea of movement, and symbolizes the cycle of time, the per petual motion of everything that moves, the planets' journey around the sun (the circle of the zodiac), the great rhythm of the universe. The circle is also zero in our system of numbering, and symbolizes potential, or the embryo. It has a magical value as a protective agent, ... and indicates the end of the process of individuation, of striving towards a psychic wholeness and self-realization" (Julien, 71).
With the number ten, symbolizes heaven and perfection as well as eternity.
In Jung, the antithesis of the square (lowest state of man who has not achieved
inner perfection), standing for the ultimate state of Oneness, with octagon
in between. Circle of Necessity: birth, growth, decline, death. Defense against
chaos, formlessness. Related to YIN
Up one level
Back to document index