Annotated Table of Contents (back to index)

1. Triangle in a Circle
    This is an ancient unity symbol representing wholeness (the circle) of body, mind and spirit (the three points of the triangle). "Nothing is simpler than Unity: the Unity of point, of triangle, of circle" --Tran Quang Vinh.
2. Bi-nka-bi
    This Ivory Coast unity symbol means "one should not bite another" and represents avoiding conflicts through fair play.
3. Universal Symbol of Unity of Religions
    This symbol was developed by spiritual teacher Sai Baba. Clockwise from the top, the symbol contains representations of Hinduism (the "Om" symbol), Buddhism (the Wheel of Life), Zoroastrianism (the sacred fire symbol), Judaism (the Star of David), Muslim faith (the crescent and star), and Christianity (the cross).
4. Synchronicity and Interconnectedness
    This unity symbol depicts one heart, one mind, one spirit, in tune with all elements, reaching out and embracing diversity within and outside of ourselves. This symbol was developed by the Science-Art Research Center of Australia.
5. Wheel of Life
    This is a Buddhist symbol of cosmic unity. "The prophets speak of a time when the tribes of the earth will come together as one. They say, that when the clans join hands in a circle of unity, the earth will be healed. The universe moves within the power of the circle. The earth, the sun, and the moon are round. The womb is round. The wind, the breath of the great mystery, swirls in circles, as do the cycles of the four seasons. Within the cycle of circles is energy. Energy sets into motion that which we call life" —Jan West Volpe, mandala artist.
6. Reiki Unity
    This Reiki symbol is used to counteract the energy of separation that has permeated our planet. It seeks to unify the energy field on the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual levels.
7. Celtic Cross
    In this symbol, the intersection of the two lines represents unity, and the circle represents wholeness.
8. K Nkonsonkonson
    This African symbol represents the chain of humanity in life and death, sharing one blood. It stands for unity, responsibility, and interdependence.
9. Reiki Pagoda
    Reiki master David Isaiah Hedelman explains this unity symbol: "This symbol is two mountain peaks sending up pillars of greenish light with brown Earth energy light supporting a violet arcing band of light. One mountain is specifically India, the other Pakistan. (Of course in meditation the pillars could be other nations, individuals, or situations.) Surrounding either side of the pagoda-like structure are blue shimmering light of soothing peace and harmony, clarity of purpose, and balance, almost like parenthesis. The inverted 'y'-like stroke represents the support of Reiki healers and other light workers holding up this structure of unity with a reddish light of healing, and support." (www.sacredpath.org)
10. World Tree
    This unity symbol shows a world tree whose branches are the interlocking hands of humanity. The Connecticut College Multicultural Center's Unity House adopted a symbol similar to this.
11. Ashanti Unity
    This Ashanti textile print symbolizes togetherness and unity.
12. Flower of Unity
    In this symbol, the dot at the center represents unity. The inner circle represents creation. The petals represent the power of expression, realization. This symbol was adopted by the Auroville Universal Township in south India.
13. Tree of Life
    The Tree of Life is an ancient symbol of unity. All is one and everything is connected in a grand circle.
14. Umoja
    This is the Kwanza symbol of unity.
15. Clasped Hands
    The unity symbol of clasped hands has been adopted by many organizations, including the United Nations.
16. Unity Symbol
    This unity symbol, adopted by the Unity Corps of Los Angeles, California, abstractly expresses feelings of oneness and mutual respect amongst all peoples. It seeks to manifest planetary peace and global wisdom. (www.unitycorps.org)
17. Join or Die
    The first American unity symbol was pre-Revolutionary in origin. In 1754, Benjamin Franklin designed this image of a cut snake with the motto "Join or Die."
18. Yin-Yang
    This Chinese symbol represents the unity of opposites. The light side and the dark side flow around one another like two fish. The "eye" of each fish shows how the light contains the dark and the dark contains the light.
19. Pyramid
    "If the high Initiates of ancient Egypt built their sanctuaries in the form of pyramids, in which the lines of the four corners rise and converge at the summit, it was in order to give mankind a lesson of unity." —Omraam Mikhael Aivanhov.
20. Circle-Square Mandala
    This is a Buddhist symbol of cosmic unity.
21. Sacred Heart
    This is a Christian symbol of unity, salvation, and peace.
22. Rainbow
    This is an age-old symbol of unity and inclusion, each color of the spectrum united in a single band.
23. Bamboo
    Moros and Christians from two North Cotabato villages in the Philippines adopted bamboo as a symbol of reconciliation, unity, and peace.
24. Two-Headed Crocodile
    In this Ghanian unity symbol, a two headed crocodile fights itself over food that goes to a common stomach. One head is at the top of the image, and the other is at the far left. The shared stomach is the center of the image. This symbol stresses the oneness of humanity in spite of cultural diversity. It also emphasizes the need for unity in the family or state.
25. 21st Century Logo
    This is a symbol of unity for all those who join hands as they travel aboard spaceship Earth. "Imagine you are standing on the moon, look up into the sky and you see a little beautiful blue living planet, our earth traveling through time and space. From above, there are just a few islands surrounded by water. You can sense the unity, peacefulness and the constant movement of earth. You realize the delicate balance that keeps everything alive is threatened by people and groups who do not see the whole planet as you can. You want to do something about it... Support the crusade for Unity! Do this with the universal 21st Century logo; it symbolizes the unity among all people across the six populated continents who believe that together, cooperating we can promote prosperity and protection for all the people and the earth. Give each other a hand, especially the children. Learn to be tolerant, patient and persistent while you reach for your goals and dreams. Earn what you take and recycle what you borrow. Have faith in yourself, the future, life, love, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Unity will get us there!" —Dr. John Ryder, www.ultimategoals.com.
26. Wedding Rings
    According to Reverend Allurah Smith of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Buffalo, New York, wedding rings symbolize "a unity made up of two whole persons, facing in the same direction, sharing the path toward the same dreams and goals."
27. Meditation Beads
    Buddhist meditation beads "are a symbol of unity and harmony. The strand is composed of beads strung on a string, each bead representing an individual. However, the bead is not isolated and independent but is connected with all others to compose the whole strand. We individuals may seem independent, but we are not independent or isolated individuals. We are related to each other in the association of life which we call Buddha nature or Buddha thought. We are inter-related and inter-dependent, and one cannot exist without the others. Thus, meditation beads symbolize the unity of all beings and harmony among them" —The Buddhist Temple of Chicago.
28. Ouroboros
    This is an ancient Gnostic symbol of unity. It shows a serpent or dragon biting its tail. The alchemists said that the Ouroboros devoured itself and brought itself back to life, mirroring the cycles of the universe. "The symbol of the ouroboros points to the inner unity of all things and stands for an underlying reality or principle of cosmic unity" —C.G. Jung Society of N.S.W.
29. Zen Circle
    The Zen Circle is a symbol of unity. It is drawn with an ink brush in a single fast stroke. "The roundness and perfection of the circle in a single unthinking act shows great practice on the part of the artist; however even the most perfect Zen Circle has a beginning and an end representing the transition from life to death. But nonetheless the circle goes around. And what is the circle without the space that it encompasses and the space which encompasses it? Inside the circle is nothingness, inside the circle is the universe, inside the circle is the magic of life and death" —Zachary Miller.
30. Ribbon
    The ribbon symbol of unity has been adopted by dozens of organizations to help bring awareness to particular humanitarian causes.
31. Pipe
    The peace pipe is a symbol of unity used in sacred ceremonies. According to Native American artist Nona Foster, "the peace pipe represents the unity of all peoples and all things in the universe. Through the pipe, peace may come to all who understand and follow its meaning, understanding in both head and heart. Only if there is peace and strength within each of our hearts can we hope to share this with others.... The Eagle Feathers are symbols of honour, bravery, love, friendship and mystical powers that moves between man and the Great Spirit. We will need all of these to accomplish a feeling of unity with all races."
32. Rose
    The symbol of the rose means "unity in diversity, where each of the petals represents a nation, a religion, a science, a philosophy, etc., all in one, one for all—all for one" —Maitreya Sangha Community.
33. Flag
    This is typically a symbol of a nation's unity.
34. Star of David
    The interlaced triangles of the Star of David represent the inseparable unity of spirit and matter. One triangle points down, toward the physical world, and the other points up, toward the spiritual world. The hexagram shape formed by their intersection is the union of spirit and matter.
35. Lambda
    Ancient Spartans regarded the lowercase Greek letter "lambda" as a unity symbol.
36. Cosmic Egg
    The Cosmic Egg contains all of the numerals and alphabetical letters, showing how all that can be numbered or named is contained in one primordial form.
37. Om
    The Om symbol of Hinduism represents the vibration of the universe and promotes unity and harmony.
38. Children Around the World
    This symbol of unity was adopted by the National Association of Social Workers in Washington, D.C. It depicts children of different cultures reaching out toward one another all around the earth.
39. Family Unity
    Unity symbols such as this one, depicting different families joined together, have been adopted by a wide variety of organizations. Some variations of this symbol include the planet Earth in the center.
40. Two Boomerangs
    This symbol, composed of two boomerangs, graphically depicts the relation where any two variables (no matter how divergent) are multiplied to produce unity. The mathematical relation is XY=1. The graph is called the "hyperbola." It shows that when people multiply their energies and talents, they produce unity.
41. Man in the Maze
    The labyrinth is a symbol of unity and wholeness. It shows a winding path that leads us into the center and out again. This is a metaphor for our own spiritual journey. The labyrinth shown here is a Native American design called "The Man in the Maze."
42. Flaming Torch
    The flaming torch is a symbol of unity among nations. It has been adopted by the Olympic Games.
43. Celtic Knot
    This is a symbol of unity and the interconnectedness of all things.
44. Nine-Point Star
    Nine is the highest single-digit number. This symbol has been adopted as a symbol of unity by the Bah‡'’ Faith.
45. Shamrock
    According to Celtic legend, St. Patrick used a Shamrock, with three leaves on one stem, as a symbol of unity.
46. Wheat
    The sheaf of wheat was used as a symbol of unity and abundance during the French Revolution.
47. Ntabon
    This is a symbol called "Ntabon" (oars) from a Ghanaian Kente cloth. Because a boat can move only by the united action of oarsmen, this symbol represents unity, perseverance, achievement, and progress.
48. Agreement and Togetherness
    This Ghanaian Adinkra symbol represents agreement, togetherness, and unity in thought and deed. It calls for concerted action and a united front.
49. Unity Tree
    This tree is a symbol of unity. The branches and fruit (representing the outstretched arms and heads of people) all spring from a common trunk.
50. Fleur de Lis
    This symbol shows the unity of mind, body, and spirit. Meaning "Flower of Light," the symbol originated with the French Royal Arms.
51. Diamonds and Circle
    This unity symbol depicts two diamond shapes joined in the center by a circle.
52. Chinese Endless Knot
    This is an auspicious geometric symbol of unity, compassion, and endless wisdom. Its lack of a beginning or end indicates that continuity underlies reality.
53. Five Strands
    This universal symbol for "Strength in Unity" features five colored stands (typically colored red, white, black, brown and yellow to represent five major skin tones). The strands form unified segment, and their intertwining gives the unit tremendous strength.
54. Praying Hands
    This is a symbol of unity in many cultures. Two sides, symbolized by the left and right hands, come together as one.
55. Unification
    This symbol of unity through love was developed by the Family Federation for Unification and World Peace.
56. Unity Leaves
    This unity tree symbol features a variety of leaves, symbolizing how different cultural expressions stem from a common root of humanity.
57. Bantu Unity
    In this Bantu symbol, the standing figure at the top represents the immortal, divine force in nature. The prone figure at the bottom represents mortal man. The curved lines are the cosmic forces (the paths of the sun on the left, moon on the right), which meet in the center at the tree of life.
58. Amish Wedding Ring
    Even though the Amish do not believe in wearing jewelry and do not exchange rings with their wedding vows, they give the "Wedding Ring" quilt as a wedding gift because the interlocking circles are powerful symbols of unity.
59. Unity Mandala
    This unity symbol was created by the Welsh artist Barry Stevens. It combines many unity symbols, including the Yin-Yang, the lotus, and the double triangle. Stevens explains that "Mandalas are universal images which can be found all over the world and beyond. They exist in the West, notably in the rose windows of cathedrals, and other forms of sacred art. They have been explored and developed to an exceptional degree in the East, especially in the Tibetan and Indian cultures and they are widely used in American Indian rituals. Mandalas are found everywhere in human culture especially where awareness of unity is prevalent. They occur abundantly in nature from the infinitely small as in atomic structures to the infinitely large as in galaxies. They are widely used for meditation and healing." (www.mandalas.freeserve.co.uk)
60. Unity Mandala
    This unity symbol was created by American artist Jon Bidwell. (www.jonbidwell.com)
61. Kali Yantra
    This is a Hindu symbol of the original cosmic unity. "Yantra literally means 'support' and 'instrument.' A yantra is a geometric design acting as a highly efficient tool for contemplation, concentration and meditation. Yantras carry spiritual significance: there is a specific meaning that pertains to higher levels of consciousness. The yantra provides a focal point that is a window into the absolute. When the mind is concentrated on a single, simple object (in this case a yantra), the mental chatter ceases. Eventually, the object is dropped when the mind can remain empty and silent without help. In the most advanced phases, it is possible to attain union with God by the geometric visualization of a yantra" —Horia Cristescu and Dan Bozaru (www.sivasakti.com).
62. Peace in Unity
    This symbol was developed by the Peace in Unity organization. They explain that "The circle represents wholeness, unity, balance, dynamic equilibrium and in certain traditions 'heaven or perfection.' This circle holds, in constant movement, the four sacred things required for life: Earth—green, Air—white, Fire—red (power/energy) and Water—black (also the subconscious). This wholeness and balance is grounded to our planet Earth—blue through, by and with the fifth sacred thing, Spirit—yellow/gold (the diamond in many traditions represents core spirit, evolving consciousness, life-spark, etcÉ many of us as children have made diamond-shaped god's eyes). Using this symbol as a dialogue generating tool, the image can serve as a foundation, a core plan, a basic map from which we can address all issues relating to the environment, social justice, economic development, progress/evolution." (www.peaceinunity.org)
63. Bouquet of Unity
    This unity symbol shows a bouquet of different flowers forming the numeral one.
64. Shared Stomach
    Similar to the Ghanian unity symbol of a two headed crocodile, this symbol features a shared stomach which stresses oneness. The symbol was adopted to promote visibility, cultural diversity, and solidarity amongst the Asian/Pacific Islander American community at Temple University.
65. U of Unity
    The letter "U" is common symbol of unity. It is shown here in a Queen Anne-style font, with the intertwining elements stressing strength through oneness.


Copyright © 2004 by Craig Conley