Why does Cupid carry a weapon?

We are all familiar with the cute image of Cupid as a chubby little child with angelic wings. Cupid is also armed with a bow and arrow. If you are lucky enough to be shot through the heart with one of Cupid’s arrows you will fall in love.


Why does it take a weapon to make us feel love? Doesn’t this aggressive act send a wrong message? Couldn’t Cupid accomplish the same goal with a hug and a kiss?


You may be wondering why I am spending any time at all, contemplating on such a silly creature born out of the human imagination from more primitive times. Cupid is certainly imaginative but not silly. In fact, a lot of mental sophistication and “higher level” thinking went into developing this winged promoter of love. Cupid actually was created to communicate a rarefied and higher meaning to the human psyche and raise its cognitive functioning above that of collecting mere terrestrial data.

Cupid is a symbolic creature that represents the ontological reality of a higher order of existence. The unique imagery displayed in the Cupid figure was the creation of an ancient people with special spiritual wisdom. To be struck in the heart by Cupid’s arrow did more than lead to worldly romance. It represented a transformation of the heart from natural to spiritual love.

Thanks to scientist/theologian Emanuel Swedenborg’s doctrine of correspondences and spiritual imagery, we can begin to interpret Cupid from a higher point of view. Correspondences are based on the premise that worldly objects and qualities can represent (correspond to) psycho-spiritual realities.

For instance, Cupid is presented to us as a young child or infant. Spiritually interpreted, Cupid represents innocence. Furthermore, Cupid’s wings signify angelic or heavenly innocence. It is from this innocence that angelic arrows are aimed at our heart.

What is the essence of heavenly weaponry? Like earthly arrows that pierce through human skin, Cupid’s arrows are spiritual ideas and arguments sharpened to make a fine point capable of piercing through to the very heart of a person. Cupid’s arrows are the power of spiritual truth to convince and persuade.

These special spiritual arrows don’t kill us in the physical sense but cause our old selves to die away so that we can be reborn.

Now I find myself skimming through a book about prehistoric humans. I stop at a page depicting cave art of hunters throwing spears at game. Gee, how embarrassing it would be to our current worldviews if even these ancient peoples had such a sophisticated system of symbolic knowledge—whereby game animals represented the worldly or lower natural qualities of human life that were about to receive spiritual instruction?

And what if all those battles depicted within the pages of the Bible contained similar meanings and interpretations? Just saying.



About thegodguy

EDWARD F. SYLVIA, M.T.S. Philosopher/Theologian Edward F. Sylvia attended the School of Visual Arts in New York and received his Master of Theological Studies at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, CA and a Certificate of Swedenborgian Studies from the Swedenborgian House of Studies. He is a member of the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences (C.T.N.S.) and the Swedenborg Scientific Association (S.S.A.). Award-winning author of "Sermon From the Compost Pile: Seven Steps Toward Creating An Inner Garden" and "Proving God," which fulfills a continuing vision that God’s fingerprints of love can be found everywhere in the manifest universe. His most recent book, "Swedenborg & Gurdjieff: The Missing Links" is an edgy collection of anti-intuitive essays for personal transformation that challenges and inspires. He has been a student of the ideas of both Emanuel Swedenborg and George I. Gurdjieff for over thirty years. Read more about TheGodGuy, his books and his ideas at http://www.staircasepress.com
This entry was posted in Inner growth, love, psychology, Reality, religion, spirituality, symbolism, unity and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Why does Cupid carry a weapon?

  1. Did you draw the cupid that’s on this blog?

  2. thegodguy says:

    Dear Lamar,

    The Cupid art was picked up as a free download from a free photosharing site called Webshots.

    Spiritually yours,

  3. Thank you, I’ll check out that website.

    I dig this post. It provides the story of cupid’s origination, that most people might have not yet heard. Keep feeding the mind “God Guy”

  4. thegodguy says:

    Thanks! You seem to embrace symbolic language. That is a good thing!

    Spiritually yours,

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