When researching Temlpar symbols, I was reading through the Knights Templar Encyclopedia by Karen Ralls, I came upon the entry of "Abraxas" that just
had a quick note for the reader to go to the section on Symbols. As I perused that section it talked about that the symbol of Abraxas is displayed on
"Templar Grand Master's seal in the Archives Nationales in Paris, which was used in a French charter in 1214." The seal displays a figure that is
Chimera-like and portrays a male warrior with a roosters head, human arms, and snakes as legs, who carries a shield and a whip; and bears the words
"Secretum Templi". This particularly description of Abraxas was known as Anguipede which means "snake-foot". It is interesting to note that this seal
was not used for particularly significant Templar documents, but can be found on ordinary, seemingly unimpressive, historical records like those
dating from 1214.
Abraxas (Greek: ΑΒΡΑΞΑΣ) is a god written about in Gnostic texts and may also be known as Abrasax (as there is thought to have been a
mistranslation from Greek to Latin). Carl Jung in his writings on the Seven Sermons to the Dead stated that Abraxas was a god higher than Jehovah. He
is said to be the father of all things, "the power above all and the First Principle," and the ruler of 365 heavens. It is said that Abraxas created
Nuos and Logos which led to Providence, Virtue, and Wisdom which gave rise to Principalities and Powers, and from "from these infinite productions and
emissions of Angels." It is these angels who govern the 365 heavens which was said to include the Judeo-Christian God, Jehovah, which followers of
Basilides denied of being a god, but rather an angel. This obviously was not a very popular belief in the 2nd century and Basilides is considered a
heretic and damned by many historical Roman Catholic figures.
Some have speculated that the imagery of the Anguipede represents emanations of this being which are as follows:
The human body is displayed as it is written that God created man in his own image. The snakes represent the two great supports of man given by
God, Nous (mind, intellect) and Logos (reason and judgment). The cock (rooster), being the creature who traditionally greets the golden dawn, is an
emblem of foresight and vigilance. He carries the shield of wisdom and the whip or flail is said to be the "whip of Helios" (Abraxas is associated
with the Sun) which represents dynamism or strength/power.
No one knows the origins of Abraxas and the relics associated with him. Some believe that it originated with a man named Basilides (an Alexandrian
mystic) in the 2nd Century AD, but even then it cannot be proven and is also hypothesized that it was transmitted to him from another source, yet
unknown to us in modern times. Abraxas was also referred to as the Great Archon, the Lord Creator, Almighty God, and Greatest God.
Many have attempted to guess as to the reason the Templars would use such an image, but without proper records and evidence it all falls into the
realm of speculation. Historical writings and modern scholars have drawn parallels between Abraxas and Mithras of Persia as well as beliefs found in
Hinduism. It is possible that the Templars were introduced to Abraxas through their time in the Middle East, but again, without hard evidence we can
only imagine. Although it is an interesting symbol, the use of this seal does not mean that the Templar Order was a Gnostic one.
8-5-2016 by KSigMason because: (no reason given)