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?

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    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, 2012 at 20:19
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    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. Sep 5, 2012 at 21:52
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    @MarcGravell: Did you mean no single answer...?
    – Caleb
    Sep 6, 2012 at 12:02

3 Answers 3


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.

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    @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, 2012 at 19:52
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    +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") Sep 5, 2012 at 21:02
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    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, 2012 at 14:18
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    @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, 2012 at 14:51
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    I'll second @MasonWheeler's thoughts -- "they just wanted stars". Sounds creepy when you say "inverted pentagram". Jun 11, 2014 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.

  • How exactly does that represent the second coming of Jesus? It had long before been a symbol of Freemasonry.
    – Narnian
    Jun 11, 2014 at 13:03

Joseph Smith was a freemason and many of the symbols on the temple are also used in freemasonry. As Mason noted, this doesn't give any meaning to the symbol (unless you have conspiracy theories regarding freemasonry,) but simply seems to be one possibility for the architectural influence.

Some have also suggested that there are also some influences between some of the garments used in the LDS temple and the robes of the Freemasons and also having members-only ceremonies, though these may be more coincidental.

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