The name given to a number of different symbolic wands, first appearing in ancient Mesopotamian cultures around 2600 BC, consisting of two serpents or basilisks twisted around a rod.
In Graeco-Roman mythology, the caduceus was the white wand carried by Roman heralds suing for peace and the wand of Hermes (Roman Mercury ), herald of the gods. According to the legend, Hermes came upon two serpents fighting. He thrust his rod between them. They coiled around the rod and remained attached to it. Thus, the caduceus emerged as the symbol of the messenger of the gods.
The caduceus is also associated with the use of paired serpents in general, such as those
on the Egyptian Pharaoh’s headpiece or the serpents coiled around the body of Mithras.
Some occultists claim that the two entwined serpents symbolize the healing snakes of Aesculapius — demigod of medicine and healing in ancient Greek mythology — and the representation has been widely adopted as a symbol of the medical profession — a form of the caduceus is used in the badge of the Royal Army Medical Corps.
Over the centuries, the caduceus was brought into the esoteric Gnostic tradition and reappears as symbolic of power and the balance between positive and negative or darkness and light. As Eastern and Western symbology mixed and merged in the 20th century, the ancient caduceus has emerged as a symbol of enlightenment and acquisition of the ancient wisdom.
In Hindu and Buddhist esoteric teachings the caduceus represents the two spiritual energies or healing forces which run up and down the human spine. In Roman thought, the caduceus was a symbol of moral equilibrium and good conduct.
In India, the caduceus became associated with the kundalini or serpent power, the latent power believed to lie as a coiled serpent at the base of the spine. As spiritual consciousness awakens, the energy travels up the spine to the top of the head.
The caduceus has a special place in the rich iconography of speculative Freemasonry. For Freemasons the caduceus represents the harmony and balance between negative and positive forces, the fixed and the inconstant, the continuity of life and the decay of life.
See Medicine: A History of Healing: Ancient Traditions to Modern Practices, The Cambridge Illustrated History of Medicine, The Golden Wand of Medicine, The Greatest Benefit to Mankind: A Medical History of Humanity, Western Medicine: An Illustrated History, Aromatherapy, Body Cleansing, Bodywork, Biofeedback, Chelation Therapy, Flower Essence Therapy, Herbology, Holistic Medicine, Iridology, Macrobiotics, Massage Therapy, Naturopathy, Polarity Therapy, Reiki, Rolfing, Love Spells -- Use these powerful love spells to help you find and keep your true love, Unbroken Curses, Mystic Gifts and Charms - New Age Gift Shop & Wicca and Pagan Supplies, The Chakra Store, The Tarot Store, Divination & Scrying Tools and Supplies, Unique Amulets, Talismans, Good Luck Charms, and Love Tokens, Powerful Witch Doctor Spell Kits, Powerful Spells - Cast by Andreika the Witch, Webmasters Make $$$, AzureGreen - Celebrating All Paths to the Divine, ISIS - Tools for Your Soul's Journey, and The Pyramid Collection - Myth, Magick, Fantasy and Romance.
Sources: (1) Dictionary of the Occult, Caxton Publishing; (2) Spence, Lewis, An Encyclopedia of Occultism, Carol Publishing Group; (3) Longe, Jacqueline L., The Gale Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine, Thomson Gale; (4) Mysteries of Mind, Space & Time: The Unexplained, H. S. Stuttman Inc. Publishers.
| || |