History of the Cross

Kel’s Cool Crosses Goddess Cross

Crosses are usually associated with the Christian faith, but most people don’t realize that crosses have been around long before Christianity.

I started making crosses about eight years ago, crafting them from pieces of wood and other things I would find like crystals, stones, shells and feathers. The first cross I made was as a get-well gift to my mom who was very ill and in the hospital. My little cross rested on my mom’s nightstand and she recovered from her illness. Did the cross I made for her make her better? Maybe, maybe not, but from then on I wanted to keep making crosses. When my mom bought me a wood-burning tool, I was so excited. I started making larger crosses with Canadian driftwood, burning in American Indian symbols, Runes or Neolithic symbols, depending on what style I was making.

Crosses have a special meaning to me, a powerful symbol that has existed for many centuries. Each cross I make is unique. When I look at the blank piece of wood, it speaks to me, it’s special energy guiding me toward creating a unique design. The three styles I work with are Southwest, Runes and Goddess. I have gathered a multitude of decorations from amethyst and crystal points, moonstones, turquoise, garnets, carnelians and many other stones to various shells, small dream catchers and other items I come across at swap meets. I am fortunate to live in a place where it is easy and inexpensive to find these items. Each cross I make has a special meaning to me and sometimes it is hard to part with them, but I feel good when I hear a heartwarming story from a buyer. One particular cross I made with a dragon centerpiece was purchased to be placed with a dearly departed friend. My crosses have journeyed all over the U.S. and beyond to the Otherworld. As an artist, that gives me a sense of immortality–long after I am gone my crosses will survive, leaving a part of me behind.

I have posted some information on the history of the cross below:

Crosses were around long before Christianity as the most cherished of religious symbols. It is believed that the ancient Cross symbolized the earth’s four directions and the divine center. Spaniards saw Indians worshipping the Cross. The Peruvians and Babylonians had the Maltese Cross. The druids were believed to have made their Cross out of a stem and two branches of the oak tree. Buddhist Crosses are common throughout the East. The Thor’s hammer Cross is a well-known Pre-Christian Cross and several deities of ancient Egypt hold a Cross in their hands. Wheeled Crosses are seen on some Pre-Christian stones, possibly as symbols of solar worship.

Ireland is known for its many ancient Crosses. Pre-Christian Crosses have been identified at Dowth and New Grange on the Boyne, Knockmany of Tyrone, Deer Park of Fermanagh, Cloverhill of Sligo and Slieve-ha-Calliagh near Lough Crew of Meath. The ancient faery people of Ireland, the Tuatha-de-Danaan, had Crosses that were adorned with snakes, birds and other animals. In the Scottish Highlands, the Fiery Cross, when dipped in goat’s blood and flaming, was a message of alarm among the wild tribes. A serpentine figure was often twisted around the Fiery Cross.

The Cross is still a very powerful symbol of faith all over the world.

My crosses can be found on http://www.ebay.com/ by putting wall crosses in the ‘find’ box and home and garden in the ‘in’ box. To refine the search, go to the left under Refine Search and specify seller by entering ‘havasukelley’

Kelley
‘Timeless tales of romance, conflict & magic’
http://www.kelleyheckart.com
http://www.myspace.com/phantomqueen3
http://twitter.com/CelticChick

7 thoughts on “History of the Cross”

  1. WOW! I knew crosses were special, but I didn’t know how much. I think I’ll do some investigating of my own, using this super interesting post as a foundation. I’m going to check your crosses too. Mmmm, I’m thinking product review 😉

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  2. Yup, very good, thanks for that. I don’t know anything much about the cross in north American traditions, your Coyote Cross has set me off looking. Brythonic Celtic, as well as Gaelic Celitc, uses it, it’s such a fundamental symbol – 4 elements and all that. And the wheeled cross – I’m doing to visit a 4000 yr old one today *g* – is also a symbol for the Earth.

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  3. Great post. Many people do not know the origins of their crosses.

    Anyone ever wonder what the significance of a scare crow came from? I mean it is a fake man on a cross—to scare crows or whatever away—however, we also know that crops were blessed etc to the goddess, in order to get a good harvest. So of course, the scarecrow (man on a cross) symbolized something deeper than a crow scare.)

    Earlier pictures of Jesus didn’t even show him on a cross. It showed him much like Osiris, with a lamb. Even the ‘X’ cross is related to Paganism.

    Love topics like this…again, great post.

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  4. Thanks for all the great responses to my post.

    I’m actually not sure about the American Indian Cross, but I know they had a Medicine Wheel that could be similar to a cross. I started making the Southwest Crosses because a lot of people out here in the West like that style and I came across some Am. Indian symbols I could burn into the crosses. I did have someone of American Indian descent buy one of my Southwest Crosses because of the meaning of the symbols I used on it.

    Now I have to go look up the origin of the scare crow because I am sure it has a deeper meaning. Thanks for bringing that up.

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  5. Those are beautiful crosses. You do such unique work. I actually collect crosses and it’s so wonderful to finally discover someone who knows the history behind them like I do.

    I used to work with a floral designer that claimed he was wiccan. Unfortunately, he was one of those people I refer to as posers. He wasn’t there for the right reasons, he just liked to get attention by wearing black and a huge pentagram.

    He asked me one day why if I was a pagan did I wear crosses. He then lectured me on how the cross was a reminder of the Burning Times and I should be ashamed of myself for calling myself a pagan. *sighs* Sometimes people should just not open their mouths. When the do they just show how little they know.

    Thanks for sharing your creations and your knowledge with us.

    Blessed Be! 🙂

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