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Yoni

A Sanskrit feminine noun stem, sometimes written yonī, denoting the female organs of generation (i.e. vulva, vagina, womb, uterus) as well as, more generally, “receptacle,” “origin,” “abode,” etc. Helena P. BLAVATSKY indicates that the womb symbolically (as well as the holy part of the Jewish Temple and the King’s chamber in the Great Pyramid of Egypt) relates to lunar symbolism (SD I:264; cf. II, 460, 473-4, 588) which has degenerated into a sexual interpretation. In India, the sign (linga) of Śiva is a stone pillar rounded at the top and resting in a saucer-shaped disk (called the yoni) which catches the oblations of water, ghee, etc., poured over the pillar during worship. They are so stylized that only an over-active imagination could interpret them as having any sexual connotation. In fact, they represent, from an esoteric point of view, a depiction of creative vibration, the upper half of the linga representing a parabola while the lower half, not being depicted, being merely imagined; the yoni represents the plane within which the creative vibration takes place.

R.W.B.

 

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