The "triple spiral" represents a variety of symbolic notions:
- The Buddhist "Triple Gem" - Buddha, Dharma, Sangha:
- Buddha - Sacred* Wisdom (Bodhi)
- Dharma - Sacred Responsibility (Human Duty/Divine Law),
- Sangha - Sacred Community
- The Hindu "Trinity" - Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva.**
These three Hindu gods are the divine representations of the processes of:
- Creation - Brahma (Creator)
- Synthesis - Vishnu (Preserver)
- Analysis - Shiva (Destroyer of obstacles)
Creation is driven by both the processes of synthesis and analysis! ***
- The "Human Triple Unity" - Spirit, Mind, Body.
This unity is discernible in the harmoniously developed human. It is expressed by the three functional modalities of play (sacred lila), learning, and work:
- Spirit - Play (sacred lila) (pertaining to spirited enjoyment, bliss),
- Mind - Learning (pertaining to mental reality),
- Body - Work (pertaining to physical reality).
- The first "Three Elements of Antiquity" - Stone, Wood, Water.
These earliest known elements are represented in by a stone edifice, a tree and a well or spring:
- Stone - house, temple,
- Wood - Pipal tree, Bael tree (bodhi tree, tree of knowledge),
- Water - well, spring, (fountain of life).
* Sacred or Human/Divine
** Unfortunately, the functionality of the divine powers of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva is rather misunderstood. E.g. according to traditional Hindu cosmology Brahma is considered to be the creator, Vishnu the preserver and Shiva the destroyer. However ingrained this interpretation is in Hindu thought, it is a rather incomplete understanding, especially the role of Shiva as simply the destroyer!
*** "There are two major low-level cognitive mechanisms of creativity: divergent thinking that is the ability to generate original, distinct, and elaborate ideas, and convergent thinking that is the ability to logically evaluate and find the best solution among a variety of feasible alternatives. A parallel between these two mechanisms and the processes of synthesis and analysis of conceptual spaces can naturally be drawn: creativity per se is a balance of synthesis, which usually leads to expanding the conceptual space, and analysis, which is associated with exploring the space. The dynamics of the interaction of divergent and convergent thinking establishes the canonical dynamics of the creative process – the dynamics of creative exploitation and exploration." Source: http://arxiv.org/ftp/cs/papers/0605/0605120.pdf (page ten)