Symbolism The Universal Language
A symbol is a form designed to portray some abstract quality. A symbol must convey an impression; it must cause the mind to see something which, though not actually in the symbol itself, is suggested by the symbol. Through the familiar is thus shadowed itself through the unfamiliar; through the commonplace that which is not commonplace is made evident. Symbols are forms, but the principles for which they stand so transcend the boundaries of form that they can only be sensed by reading into the symbol certain abstract elements, or by grasping with internal comprehension that greater profundity which the symbol does not contain but whose existence it intimates. Symbols are also employed to epitomize something. A whole Galaxy may be summarized in a single star, and vast issues by being reduced to their simple elements may be rendered intelligible. By clothing the unfamiliar in terms of the familiar the mind is enabled to grasp with certain measure of accuracy the significance of the unknown.