Terms and Questions:

Sacred Symbolism



1.    Symbolic communication

2.    Sign

3.    Symbol

4.    First order religious discourse

5.    Second order religious discourse

6.    Master symbol (“root symbol”)


1.    What are the essential features of “symbolic communication” as Livingston describes it?

2.    What is a representational symbol and how does it differ from a presentational symbol?  Illustrate with examples.

3.    How does the statue of Shiva Nataraja illustrate the nature of a Master symbol?  Give other examples.