Take the 2-minute tour ×
Christianity Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for committed Christians, experts in Christianity and those interested in learning more. It's 100% free, no registration required.

The Temple in Salt Lake has several inverted pentagrams as decorations. (To see a few, just google "lds temple salt lake inverted pentagrams" and click on images. Or click here)

According to Wikipedia, the inverted pentagram symbol is used in Neo-Paganism, Satanism, and magick, as well as Freemasonry.

How exactly did it become a symbol of the LDS church? (It seems like an odd symbol to use, given how it's used by others.) What does it represent according to LDS teaching?

share|improve this question
1  
Freemasonry does not use the inverted pentagram. However Eastern Star does. I think this would be a great question for this SE. However, this may be an interesting read for you. With that said, some symbols have been around longer than Christianity. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that a 5 pointed star (no matter its direction) is bad. This is a newer taboo –  user1054 Sep 5 '12 at 20:19
3  
Symbol interpretation is always a fun subject because the meaning is so subjective. For example, what is the true meaning of the swastika? There is single answer, due to how many cultures have used it separately, and how many times it has occurred simply as a pleasing geometric shape without actually needing any special meaning. –  Marc Gravell Sep 5 '12 at 21:52
2  
@MarcGravell: Did you mean no single answer...? –  Caleb Sep 6 '12 at 12:02

2 Answers 2

up vote 15 down vote accepted

The symbol has no specific meaning within LDS theology, and there are no teachings regarding it. According to an article found among the Wikipedia page's sources, the pentagram symbol actually has a long history in Christian and Jewish art and architecture, and only first began to be associated with Satanism and the occult in the 1850s. By this point, the design for the Salt Lake temple had already been drafted.

The star symbolism in the temple was included, along with carved depictions of other celestial bodies, as symbolic of heavenly glory, which is described in the Doctrine and Covenants, section 76, as being similar to the brightness of the sun, the moon and the stars.

share|improve this answer
2  
@Narnian: Have a look at the linked article. It's got several examples, including a Jewish one going back all the way to BC times. –  Mason Wheeler Sep 5 '12 at 19:52
3  
+1 Matthew B. Brown's book Symbols in Stone talks about this too, and declares the inverted star to be symbolic of the Morning Star (Venus) and thus a symbol of Jesus Christ. (He declares Himself the "bright and morning star") –  Dave DeLong Sep 5 '12 at 21:02
2  
Accepted answere, but it seems odd that it is used so often without there being any specific meaning or teaching regarding it. –  Narnian Sep 7 '12 at 14:18
5  
@Narnian: One possible explanation: They just wanted stars. There are two stars that are geometrically very easy to create: a five-pointed star, and a six-pointed star. And the six-pointed star already had a well-known meaning as a piece of religious symbolism at the time the temple was being built: it's the Star of David, associated as strongly with Judaism as the cross is with Christianity. The five-pointed star did not have any such meaning at that time, so it was quite convenient to use. It's worth noting that temples built later have not included the pentagram in their ornamentation. –  Mason Wheeler Sep 7 '12 at 14:51
1  
I'll second @MasonWheeler's thoughts -- "they just wanted stars". Sounds creepy when you say "inverted pentagram". –  Jake Toronto Jun 11 at 23:07

The inverted star represents the second coming of Jesus Christ. This symbol is also on the Nauvoo Temple and this is what I was told when I asked around about it.

share|improve this answer
    
How exactly does that represent the second coming of Jesus? It had long before been a symbol of Freemasonry. –  Narnian Jun 11 at 13:03

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.