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BakaOnna
I'll just copy my post from the other forum I posted in.

I realized that there was a lot more symbolism in FMA then I thought. I knew there was a lot of symbolism when I first watched it. There was the whole idea of humoculus and being named after the seven deadly sins. The idea of the deadly sins were used in Dante Aligieri's Divine Comedy, and Dante is the person controlling the homunculus.

In addition, a lot of the symbols used in the series are real symbols used, like the snake and cross or the Ouroboros, which is the what I'm mainly focusing on.

So I was browsing through curious articles are Wikipedia when I came across this in the Ouroboros article.

QUOTE ("Wikipedia")
"Homunculi represent the seven deadly sins in the series and which were created by various alchemists in the attempt to bring humans back to life. This reflects an outstanding similiarity to Jung's belief of Ouroboros as an archetype of Death & Rebirth, as the Homunculi themselves are reborn humans made by alchemists. It is also interesting to note that Homunculi have a tendency to come back to life after being killed, and furthermore bring about their own demise, thus a snake biting its own tail and recreating themselves. The tatoo itself has some special abilities as well when touched by an alchemist. On a related subject, all alchemists in the series use Alchemy arrays which are circular designs (again circulating power as a tenet of both the symbol of Ouroboros and Alchemy itself within the series). Some alchemists however, have the ability to clap their hands together thus forming a circle with their body and arms, once again manifesting the power of Alchemy through circulating power." (Collective Essays on Archetypes of Modern Culture)

The Fullmetal Alchemist ouroborus contains another symbol within the circle. The symbol, in alchemy, is the seal of solomon. While the symbol has other obvious meanings, in the context of alchemy it represents the union of the fire symbol (up pointing triangle) and the water symbol (down pointing triangle). In alchemy the union of elements in opposition is symbolic of both transmutation and ultimately the quest for the Philosopher's stone.
Fullmetal Alchemist Ouroborus
Fullmetal Alchemist Ouroborus

In Fullmetal Alchemist, several characters adopt the symbol of a snake fixed on a cross. That symbol can be taken as the opposite of the Ouroboros. The winged snake on the cross representing the fixation of the volatile. As the Oroborus represents the cycle of birth and death, the snake on the cross represents fixed continuing life.


Wow, I've never noticed it before until now. The ouroboros symbol representing Death & Rebirth, while contrary, the snake and cross symbol representing continuing life. Plus the whole human transmutation thing forming the creation of the homunculus.

And contrary to most beliefs, alchemy isn't only the transmutation of metals into gold. It's also the transmutation of a person's soul and the spiriual transformation of the self.

Damn, I sound like my English teacher with this post.
Molecular Alchemist
To be honest, I kinda knew all that stuff already (and a bit more..hehehe). XD But if you didn't I guess Wikapedia's a good place to start to look for information on the background of the story. tongue.gif By he way...that "Winged serpent on a cross" that is referred to above (with the crown above its head that is on the back of Ed's jacket) is something that Nicholas Flamel (the famous alchemist who was after the real philospher's stone) drew in his notebooks. His notebooks also have pictures of o two-headed serpent, drawn in the same manor as the serpent that the FMA artists used to construct the Orboborus, which would imply that array was borroy from Flammel as well. The show has alot more history/symbolism than this...ya just need to take the time to delve more deeply than Wikapedia... smile.gif
BakaOnna
QUOTE(Molecular Alchemist @ Nov 13 2005, 12:30 PM) [snapback]313893[/snapback]

To be honest, I kinda knew all that stuff already (and a bit more..hehehe). XD But if you didn't I guess Wikapedia's a good place to start to look for information on the background of the story. tongue.gif By he way...that "Winged serpent on a cross" that is referred to above (with the crown above its head that is on the back of Ed's jacket) is something that Nicholas Flamel (the famous alchemist who was after the real philospher's stone) drew in his notebooks. His notebooks also have pictures of o two-headed serpent, drawn in the same manor as the serpent that the FMA artists used to construct the Orboborus, which would imply that array was borroy from Flammel as well. The show has alot more history/symbolism than this...ya just need to take the time to delve more deeply than Wikapedia... smile.gif


Yea, I knew that. Those symbols were also enscribed onto Flamel's tombstones.

And I love wikipedia. What's kinda bad is that they don't actually mention all the symbolism used in the FMA related articles. You have to fish around and search for things on a topic relavant to the series. But that just makes wikipedia more fun. smile.gif I sound like a dork.
EdElricsGal93
There's a mention of Fullmetal Alchemist on Wikipedia? ohmy.gif I worship that place now.

Indeed, FMA contains much symbolism, proving anime really can be rather complex and thought-provoking. For example, why is Ed short? And why is he so sensitive about that? There must be a deeper meaning than what seems on the surface. Has anyone realized that Napoleon, the great French leader, was also short? And that he was also sensitive about his height that he made his painters picture him a little taller? This can't be a coincidence, can it? And red represents valor, which is a characteristic of both Ed and Napoleon. I swear, the FMA creator must be hinting at her admiration towards Napoleon through Ed.

There's also Ed's braid, of course. See, a braid consists of three strands. Three. Trinity. In other words, Ed's braid really symbolizes the Trinity of Christianity: Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit, which I don't find surprising, considering the prevalent religious theme throughout the whole series. Already the first episode displays a city in religious fervor. Then the seven deadly sins. And the use of the name Dante, the first person to influence our current images of Heaven and Hell. Then the constant mention of souls, in spite of Ed's claim to be an atheist. Man, what really is the FMA creator aiming at? Must do some more research now.
EdElricsGal93
Exactly! It's funny, I was thinking about this the other day. Didn't Ed try the human transmutation when he was eleven and Al ten? And in the TV series, isn't Ed fifteen, which means four years have passed since then? I find it eerie that the movie takes place two years after the end of the TV series, which makes a total of six years ever since the two brothers attempted the human transmutation. Six is as symbolic a number as seven is. Seven is God's number, and six is human's number. Triple six makes it Satan's number, but humans alone are already bad enough as they are. Al's action in cutting his hair probably signifies a departure from the Christianity theme that has flourished in the TV series. This is SO obvious. Undoubtedly the FMA creator has had some personal issues with religions and deities in general. While I'd like to elaborate some more, I myself haven't seen the movie and cannot do so, but I don't doubt that the movie will be even more interesting with its darker theme. Dum-dum-duum.
FrozenWater
I personally think you're all reading too deep.
Ok i understand the symbolisim and all. Im big into metaphors.
Just, this show was made for fun. happy.gif Just dont dig too far in, or you'll only be making it knowledge.

I love you all. You know it. Dont get mad.
Yugi Taylor
I find it interesting how much of the philosophy is in Fullmetal Alchemist...but truly, I'd rather enjoy it as a show. I do know that alot of Japanese Animation put alot of philosophy in their anime, take for example, Shin Seiki Evangelion (Neon Genesis Evangelion). There's alot of stuff in their that made my mind blow, but I just respect it and see it as a show. But hey, that's just my opinion ^^
Dingbat
Duh. Of course none of us here in their right minds would consider these symbolisms as ZOMG I Juft Found A Perfect Source For My Essay! thing. The symbolisms just show that the creators had done their homework and they had graciously provided us with mini easter eggs to find throughout the series.

If you're talking about EVA, however, it's a different story entirely...
BakaOnna
I just thought it was interesting how that much research and, like others have mentioned, philosophy was used in creating this anime and manga. I'm sure many other anime series also has them too, but, I just find alchemy an interesting topic.
The Krazy one
laugh.gif Uhh Ever noticed the Cities represent real life places and their Alchemy?
Central = Europe (Search for a way to create Gold during the Reinassance and the Scientific Revolution, they were also tried and considered heretics by the Catholic Church.) Central city seems to be the center of the commerce and wealth in Aemistris.

Xing = China (During the Qin Dynasty an Emperor by the name of Shi Huan Di searched for the Elixir of Life, after that many philosophers and emperors also searched for the Universal Panacea? Or cure to everything. Remember, China developed early medicine and Xing uses Medicine based Alchemy xD)

Ishbal = Middle East, how they prospered during the time of the Caliphs, Early beliefs rooted from the Middle East to Western Europe. They were thrown into chaos, as is many middle eastern countries today especially for their beliefs in Religion and its many sects.

Lior= A Middle Eastern Country that was thrown into chaos... today we got alot of those wink.gif

You can relate this to today's Current news on Global problems like the Westerner's influence in the Middle East etc. etc.
Hyuga Akurei
Theophrastus Bombast von Hoenheim aka Paracelsus was the first person to create a homunculus, supposedly and in real life. He used hair, bones, semen, and various other ingredients to create it. the homunculus survived off human blood and other materials. (Hoenheim Elric).
His work was burned, for the most part, and it is not known whether the homunculus died or ran away from his master to pursue his own endevours. (Greed)
He was also a show off and bragged about his work, when other alchemists heard of this they burned down his lab out of jealousy. (Hoenheim's House)

I can't remember the name of the first person to create the Philosopher's Stone, but I do know that back then this element's glowing composition made everyone believe it was the real deal...till it failed to yeild results. What this person actually created was Phosphorus.

Glen Seaborg was the first man to transmute Gold into Lead with the use of a particle accelerator in 1980. The machine used too much power however, and produced such small quantities of gold that it was a wasted effort.

Spiritual Alchemy believes that the Philosopher's stone is an obvious object because this mythical stone exists withing everyone of us. (The manga, all the homunculi have Philosopher's stone Nuclei)

That's all I know for now so till I figure more out, I'll write.

P.S.
I'm making a FMA D20 game, if anyone would like to help, please PM me happy.gif
Antimony
Lots of crosses appear in FMA, too, and everybody here knows what crosses mean, right? Besides the obvious places like churches and graveyards they also appear on characters' bodies. I'm not talking about the Serpent Cross that Ed, Al, and Izumi wear, though. I'm talking about Scar. The scar on his face is an X shape, basically the same thing as a tilted cross, and his clothes have crosses on them. His coat has one on the back and his pants have one on the left leg.

IPB Image
IPB Image

So what do all those crosses mean? Obviously Scar is not a Christian, but maybe they're meant to show us the viewing audience how he believes himself to be a Savior of mankind. He's trying to 'cleanse' the evil of the world by killing all State Alchemists who, in his mind or for real, are the ultimate sinners.

Yay for overanalysis!
Martin Easth
the symbolism in FMA is extremely developed and it is everywhere in the series so if you want you
can spend some 200-300 hours analysing all episodes in detail. I had thoughts about doing that but even if
I do it and write a long report on it, all people I know would only think that I copied it from the internet.
Hyleaus
QUOTE(Martin Easth @ Jan 21 2006, 07:51 PM) [snapback]341049[/snapback]

the symbolism in FMA is extremely developed and it is everywhere in the series so if you want you
can spend some 200-300 hours analyzing all episodes in detail. I had thoughts about doing that but even if
I do it and write a long report on it, all people I know would only think that I copied it from the internet.


I think that you can look at the series as using 'symbolism;' however, I don't think that such is the creators' intention. Often in Japanese epic plots whether it be anime or video game. Probably what happened is that someone had an idea, and they wanted to do a bit to make the show seem somewhat more interesting and so add some research to it. The idea was probably alchemy and creating life... well, what are the downfalls to doing this: homunculi; what are common criticisms of alchemy i.e. witchcraft... Religion... reference to the middeast where religion is run amok.

As far as video games go, anyone who's read a lick of mythology can tell you that name and concept borrowing is everywhere. Whether it be from the Semites: Gilgamesh, or from the Greeks: C(k)eberus. I'm not too as knowledgeable on Eastern mythology, maybe someone can help here. Also, I think that Norse mythology is sadly underrepresented. Upon review, I can think of only one reference: In The Legend of Zelda Link's horse Epona shares her name with the Norse god of Horses.

I really enjoy the fact that this Japanese 'borrowing' tradition goes on. It's fun to know where names come from, but I don't think that the names are necessarily symbolically motivated. I think that they are really just looking for cool names a lot of the time. I can't tell you how many times I've searched for mythological names when I play RPG's and the like. It makes things a bit more interesting.

Errare est humanum

Hyleaus
Popogeejo
QUOTE(Antimony @ Nov 20 2005, 09:45 PM) [snapback]317582[/snapback]

Lots of crosses appear in FMA, too, and everybody here knows what crosses mean, right? Besides the obvious places like churches and graveyards they also appear on characters' bodies. I'm not talking about the Serpent Cross that Ed, Al, and Izumi wear, though. I'm talking about Scar. The scar on his face is an X shape, basically the same thing as a tilted cross, and his clothes have crosses on them. His coat has one on the back and his pants have one on the left leg.

IPB Image
IPB Image

So what do all those crosses mean? Obviously Scar is not a Christian, but maybe they're meant to show us the viewing audience how he believes himself to be a Savior of mankind. He's trying to 'cleanse' the evil of the world by killing all State Alchemists who, in his mind or for real, are the ultimate sinners.

Yay for overanalysis!


Also in the Manga the first gReed we meet was pinned on a cross.
Hyleaus
QUOTE(popogeejo @ Mar 22 2006, 07:54 AM) [snapback]367126[/snapback]

QUOTE(Antimony @ Nov 20 2005, 09:45 PM) [snapback]317582[/snapback]

Lots of crosses appear in FMA, too, and everybody here knows what crosses mean, right? Besides the obvious places like churches and graveyards they also appear on characters' bodies. I'm not talking about the Serpent Cross that Ed, Al, and Izumi wear, though. I'm talking about Scar. The scar on his face is an X shape, basically the same thing as a tilted cross, and his clothes have crosses on them. His coat has one on the back and his pants have one on the left leg.

IPB Image
IPB Image

So what do all those crosses mean? Obviously Scar is not a Christian, but maybe they're meant to show us the viewing audience how he believes himself to be a Savior of mankind. He's trying to 'cleanse' the evil of the world by killing all State Alchemists who, in his mind or for real, are the ultimate sinners.

Yay for overanalysis!


Also in the Manga the first gReed we meet was pinned on a cross.


I think that this reference to Jesus overlooks the fact that Scar is not the protagonist. He is at best an ally in the end. Perhaps, if you want to go the Christ-figure route, maybe you ought to take a Hebrew perspective? Hebrew legend (incidentally, Islamic legend as well) takes the position that Jesus was a prophet, but not the savior of mankind. Also, consider that in Hebrew myth, there are a few tales including the creation of what is known as a Golem- that is to say, an artificially created human being. Golems, as well as Homunculi seem to terrorize with utter abandon.

Audi alteram partem.

Hyleaus
Popogeejo
But Golems were made of stone and 30 foot tall.
Gluttony is shorter than Ed and made of fleshyness.
Hyleaus
I was concerned more with the symbolic creation vs. his/her creator.

Fallaces sunt rerum species

Hyleaus
Keoni
QUOTE(Hyleaus @ Mar 23 2006, 03:18 AM) [snapback]367806[/snapback]

I was concerned more with the symbolic creation vs. his/her creator.

Fallaces sunt rerum species

Hyleaus


You meant Fallaces enim sunt rerum species, I think...
( You're not the only one who knows Latin wink.gif )

As for Scar, the Isballan believe seems to be a lot like the Christian one, hence the crosses. Or that's wat I think.
As for the X shaped scar... One of Jesus his followers was cruciefied on a cross shaped like that one.. maybe it's just an other way to show his believe?
Hyleaus
QUOTE(Keoni @ Mar 23 2006, 08:26 PM) [snapback]368090[/snapback]



You meant Fallaces enim sunt rerum species, I think...
( You're not the only one who knows Latin wink.gif )

As for Scar, the Isballan believe seems to be a lot like the Christian one, hence the crosses. Or that's wat I think.
As for the X shaped scar... One of Jesus his followers was cruciefied on a cross shaped like that one.. maybe it's just an other way to show his believe?



I shouldn't be messing with this in this forum, but your addition of enim is strictly stylistic. I was not quoting anyone, in case that is what you were trying to correct. It would be just as, but not more correct to insert enim, it depends upon style alone. (I appreciate the input, plus your study).

In any event, the reason why I bring up Hewbrew as the source for symbolism is because in the story Scar is decidedly NOT the progtagonist. If we are to consider this, then it would be like looking at history where Jesus was not the protagonist i.e. from the perspective of the Jews, or even the Romans. That doesn't mean he was an evil man, but it does mean that some people (who didn't understand him) were very peturbed by him.

Illos quis alas habentes, quasi somnii volate- "To those with wings, fly to your dreams."

Hyleaus
_azztro_
and from what i know (i'm not sure if this is correct) the ancient symbol of Christ is "X", thus we have the short version of Christmas as "X-mas"...
SCARED4LIFE
Wow....I didn't know half of what you guys said.......scuse moi for not being the brightest bulb in the box ,but this forum is for ppl that can acutly understand the big words and stuff for witch you are saying...

Yes I know. Im crazy and not too bright in the head.
Popogeejo
QUOTE(_azztro_ @ Mar 27 2006, 05:28 AM) [snapback]370020[/snapback]

and from what i know (i'm not sure if this is correct) the ancient symbol of Christ is "X", thus we have the short version of Christmas as "X-mas"...


The X in X-mas is supposed to pronounced "Cross" not "Ex" because "Crossmas" dounds similar to Christmas.

I don't really like looking for relligous symbolism simply because it's so easy to find even if it's not intended.Any cross thses days is seen as allusions to Jesus or if someone sacrifices themselves.
Yes there is symbology in FMA but some of the stuff you will find isn't meant to be.
The X on Scar could just an Homage to Samurai X or represent the X in "X marks the spot" showing that the philosiphers stone (treasure) is in Scar or it could just be because X shaped scars look cool.

I enjoy reading thread like tis and seeing how you guys interpret certain things but just remember Relligon/Jesus is like an elephant under your bed,not hard to find.(this makes more sense in my head)
Damascus
I think the symbolism and philosophy underlying FMA is what makes it the best anime ever! Many of the things you will find are (though many people have beaten me to it, I'll just list em for y'all):

The Ouroboros is a major symbol of alchemy, appears on the Homonculus, the main antagonists.
The Caduceus--also called a Flammel, because it appears on Nicholas Flamel's tomb--opposes the Ouroboros, and pointedly appears on the homonculus sealing circle. It is a snake on a cross. Also appears paired with the main protagonists: Ed's jacket, Al's shoulder, and Izumi's tattoo.

Hohenheim seems obviously modeled after the alchemist Paracelsus (sp?), because his proper name ends with "von Hohenheim." Von Hohenheim was rumored to have created a homonculus, which thereby fled from him. Remind you of anybody? *cough envy cough*

We have all heard that Dante is named after Dante Aligieri, the author of the Divine Comedy, which pointedly mentions the seven deadly sins in the Inferno. I think also that Dante suffered from unrequited love, same as the FMA one. wink.gif

I just noticed this one: Look closely at the Grand Arcanum transmutation circle. It seems to me that the large dark shapes depict a bird-like shape. I'm reminded of the phoenix, which corresponds with the reddening phase (the final phase) of the Philosopher's Stone's creation (feathers of a phoenix), according to ancient alchemists.

That's all I can see for right now, but I'm sure you clever people can see more. wink.gif
Popogeejo
The Orburos is also a symbol for Imortality as it's an endless circle and the Falmmel is the antithisis of it what with it being a snake nailed down but I'm sure you know that already.
Thank you Wiki wink.gif
Philosopher's Stone
Since ancient times, popular imagination has circulated on archetypal figures who wielded esoteric knowledge. Shamans and witch doctors were held in reverence and fear of their rumored abilities to conjure beasts and create demons. They shared many of the same perceived characteristics that have been passed onto mad scientists such as eccentric behavior, living as hermits, and the ability to create life. -Wikipedia, on the topic of Mad Scientists

Aside from the literal symbolism, there are themes as well. Particularly magical ones.

First off, alchemy has real-world ties to the ideas of magic. The process of transformation, the merging and unification of those elements that are opposite but complementary to form new things was a kind of sorcery, the realm of wise men. The Philosopher's Stone could be grasped by men wise enough to see the underlying principle of all physical laws, and therefore bend and transform all things with equal ease. The whole "magic circle" thing is really a tipoff, same with the magical circle that a bunch of German professors were chanting over at the end of the show. Roy can fling fire. Wizards throw fire. I'm sure you get the point. (Magical fire is so cliche...)

You really can see this in the treatment of alchemy by the characters of the show. Alchemy is magic. A lot of characters fall victim to their magical thinking. Edward and Alphonse just wanted their mother back, alchemy was a method for doing so, whether or not that is true is irrelevent to them. Mustang tells Riza that he was trying to remember the formulae of human transmutation at Hugh's funeral and so on. Sure they can keep telling themselves it is a "science" but in their weakest moments they use it as if it were magic. I laugh at the irony of it when Nina says, "It is a magic circle that can make big brother's wishes come true!"

By the same token, magic is dangerous and according to the Ishbalans, the realm of the Devil. Alchemy is a powerful force for transformation. Ed and Al exchanged their youth for an early adulthood by attempting their mother's revival. And of course, you have all the vagaries of mad-science that exist within the show. There's the same sort of fear inherent of science. The symbol and imagery of the mad-scientist hasn't changed from the days of yore, a real sign that the fear of the potential abuses of technology hasn't changed: whether they be the nuke of the Cold War, biological terrorism today or even the petty quibblings over evolutionary theory.

Magical thinking is really more common than you might believe, even in the real-world. For our purposes, magical thinking is an intuitive leap that bypasses good sense.

Let me give you an example: Albumin, a easily manufactured type of protein is now a folk remedy in parts of Asia. Why? Because during times of war, it was a cheap way to give protein to starving folk so that they wouldn't fall victim to disease. So it is ascribed powers that it doesn't have. Fertility, good health, etc.

Another example is: Penis pills. I'm sure all of you hate getting those in your spam mail. Even bodybuilding seems to suffer too much hype about putting on muscle and advertising health products. Take the supplment, my friend, it'll make *everything better.*

My friend always tells me to eat more meat. Sadly, my body just doesn't put on muscle just because I eat more proteins. It just doesn't work the same way for me as it does for him. (Magical thinking: Well I have to get *something* back for all that time I put into studying for that Qualification Exam.)

There are also the McMartial Arts instructors usually don't know jack about fighting or even good self-defense. But here we are, believing foolishly that there's such a thing as the "Ultimate Fighting Art." I don't doubt that there's lots of stupid things people do by injuring themselves in a fight. That means *you* Ms. I'm-Angry-and-Independent. Taking a self-defense course doesn't make you a bonfide, badass. It's basically a macho fantasy to think so.
Philosopher's Stone
It should also be noted that Golems actually originate from legends of associated with Jewish Rabbi's. Simply put, Rabbi's were allegedly so wise that they could animate the clay of earth into a semblence of lfe. This represents their spiritual power and the Rabbi that could do this was to be given the outmost respect. Despite this, their automatons are only a shadow of God's power of creation.

This calls to mind the incident with Cornello, where he animated statues to arrest the Elrics. "He must be a prophet of the Sungod!" You might also note that there's a lot of animated hands, statues and earth-shaping in FMA in general: presumably repsenting the shaping of primal materials and ordering them.

Also, there are heavy Taoistic themes in FMA as well. This is primarily evident in Izumi's particular brand of instruction impressed upon the Elric brothers. She trains them to be complete: mind and body. Thusly she instructs them in both hand-to-hand combat and in alchemy. She also stresses a hollistic view of the world and of Alchemy when she forces the Elrics to survive on the island. The whole all-in-one and one-in-all touches upon a number of spiritual philosophies.

Taoism has many similarities in a lot of religious and spiritual traditions. "God" is arguably the equivalent of the "Tao." That which cannot be named, for the words used in naming it are inadequate in expressing it. Both are inexhaustable and infinite. (Fun Fact: The number zero can be likened to the concept of God. Both appear to have no known form or shape, but in their lacking, they form a presence.)

Alchemy is really dabbling into metaphysical philosophy and by extension, this hollistic spiritualism that is stressed within the show. Alchemy is very much a spiritual quest. The desire to understand the foundation of all physical laws, and thusly achieving ultimate mastery over the elements. The Chinese and Europeans both had alchemic traditions, both might have ascribed spiritual or religious connotations to alchemy.

P.S.
Anime isn't the only thing that puts philosophy into entertainment. But regardless of what you're talking about, most of it is usually done poorly. I'm sure you can think of a dozen sappy cliches that Hollywood movies foist onto you. Or the pretentious crap that was the Matrix Trilogy. I dislike Anno Hideaki for precisely that fact: he couldn't bother to keep his integrity as an entertainer and had to run off and write some piss-poor essay on his philosophies because he was depressed.
Damascus
Well, you seem to have a fair bit of research behind you. :S Only thing I've really read about that you've mentioned is Taoism. True the one in all, all in one does correlate pretty closely with Taoism. I think its more of a philosophy then a religion, as it can be combined with other religions. You can easily be Christian AND Taoist, but that's a whole 'nother story.

I liked the Matrix trilogy! The philosophy in the trilogy centered around simulacra and hyperreality, if you have any knowledge of those areas. Of course, the predestination theme is kind of overdone, but they addressed it in a unique way by putting the control and "choice" factor into it. (The One is actually a system of control to regenerate human energy source). But meh, I have a headache so I'm going to bed.

P.S.: See V for Vendetta. It's righteous.
Bader
~ Flamel Crest Of Ed/Al/Izumi/& other alchemst in FMA: What is it's origin? ~



What are the origins of this mark? Izumi has it tattoo'd on her chest, and Ed has it on his overcoat and Al has it painted on his shoulder. You see it in a lot of places around the Elric's Home, Dante's Home, and the transmutation circle (shown above) used to seal humonculi has it on it. Izumi says it is the mark passed down along a long line of alchemists, or so she thought. Does it have a name? What is its significance?

Discuss please.
sweety_pie
'It is called a flamel. It is kind of the opposite of the Orobous.
It represents a fixation on the violatile princaple in alchemy as opposed to the endless cycle repressented by Oroborous.

It is refered to 'the Flamel' as in Nicholas Flamel. It was one of the alchemical symbols placed on his tombs.'
Bader
QUOTE(sweety_pie @ Sep 10 2006, 05:16 PM) [snapback]444915[/snapback]

'It is called a flamel. It is kind of the opposite of the Orobous.
It represents a fixation on the violatile princaple in alchemy as opposed to the endless cycle repressented by Oroborous.

It is refered to 'the Flamel' as in Nicholas Flamel. It was one of the alchemical symbols placed on his tombs.'


Wow thanks for that information! It still surprises me how ignorant of the FMA world I still am. Does it say this in the manga, because I don't recall it mentioning this in the anime...

Yeah here's the image (see attachment)


The symbol is on the left, one image down from the top corner.
Popogeejo
QUOTE
Wow thanks for that information! It still surprises me how ignorant of the FMA world I still am. Does it say this in the manga, because I don't recall it mentioning this in the anime...


Sweety Pie has done quite abit of research on alchemy and such. There are alot of unexplained alchemy related reffrences in FMA.
Tombow
@Bader - Could you kindly switch that pic to attachment, or, simply just post the link, and not the image, or change the size of the pic??
It's stretching the forum page, and since I have a low connection, it's causing the page to take forever to load.

Thanks!! biggrin.gif
Bader
So do you guys think it is possible that the line of alchemists that the anime said that Dante and Hohenheim are taught from have any connections with Nicolas Flamel?
Ailuro
Maybe if there was also a Nicholas Flamel in the Hagaren world. This Nicholas Flamel could have succeeded in his experiment of turning lead to gold (or whatever it was, I think I'm getting names mixed up), thus influencing the past FMA society the way chemistry and the like influenced ours. Perhaps both the worlds had been developing the same until that crucial point in time, then started to evolve in separate ways. Sort of like how the flip of a coin could send one universe one way, then another the other way. Or the reason could be elements and science act differently in both worlds. Either way, that could be why the two worlds are different.


----------------------------Alchemy succeeds ------------ Hagaren world
--------------------------/
Start-----------------=
--------------------------\
----------------------------Achemy fails ------------------- Our world



Anyway, I got pretty off there. I probably have no idea what I'm talking about. But, yeah. I'd say that could be possible, since we never see that symbol with anyone except those related to Dante.
MonsterEnvy
Perhaps Flamel was one of the alchemists making the PS with Dante and Hohenheim? They'v already got a Paracelsus and a gender-confused Alighieri, why not toss on a successful Flamel? Perhaps Hohenheim even stole his body...
lag master1
I was wondering if the symbol was ever used in the real world. The symbol that the characters draw, touch the symbol and something happens. I am not wondering if something would happen b/cnothing probably would. I am wondering if real world alchemy used the symbols and how? Please message me back. Thank You.





-lag master1-







jvcunningham@msn.com
sweety_pie
That symbol was used by a real alchemists named Nicholas Flamel. It was one of the alchemic symbols put onto his grave.

Or was you refering to transmutation circles, and alchemic reactions? If so they are not really used in our world. A transmutation is a an analogous to what a catalyst does in a chemical reaction.
Sin Of Envy
QUOTE
Perhaps Hohenheim even stole his body...


Interesting, but I don't think he could do that.
Flamel lived in 15th century and Hohenheim was born somewhere in 16th if we take that he lived for 400 years....

Both Ouroboros and Flamel are taken from Flamel's tomb....
Array or Transmutation circle is a an analogous like what sweety_pie said.
But they are similar to Solomon's key:

IPB Image
sweety_pie
I found out yesterday that 'The Mark of the Alchemists' is actually called a Cadecus. (Although most people just call it a Flamel.)

...In case anyone cares.
Tombow
QUOTE(sweety_pie @ Oct 1 2006, 10:17 PM) [snapback]453924[/snapback]
I found out yesterday that 'The Mark of the Alchemists' is actually called a Cadecus. (Although most people just call it a Flamel.)

...In case anyone cares.
@sweety_pie - You meant cadeceus, I assume??
That's the symbol with Hermes's staff/wand with wings, and the two serpents twined around it, right??
[attachmentid=7226]
I think the name "Cadeceus" for that symbol is mostly used in our worldly stuff, (vs. many FMA fans view "symbol on Ed's coat" as Flamel sysbol ("snakes on the cross' thingy), probably mostly because of Flamel's obvious connection to the "Alchemy" - not our world alchemy, but "Hagaren" type alchemy - whereas, in our world, that winged staff with snakes thingy is usually called Cadeseus, and it's used as the symbol of Medical profession, pharmacy stuff, and such, I think. smile.gif
Chiyo
I'm getting so confused, its been years since I did the History of Medicine, but I believe the two snakes were taken from Asclepius, who used two snakes to heal people.

The original Hippocratic oath started with the line "I swear | by Apollo the Physician and by Asclepius and by Hygieia and Panacea and by all the gods . . .". As you know doctors take the Hippocratic oath before they can practise medicine. So I believe the snakes are from Asclepius and the wings from Mercury.

But I may be completely wrong.

The Rod
Tombow
QUOTE(Chiyo @ Oct 2 2006, 05:25 AM) [snapback]454026[/snapback]
I'm getting so confused, its been years since I did the History of Medicine, but I believe the two snakes were taken from Asclepius, who used two snakes to heal people.

The original Hippocratic oath started with the line "I swear | by Apollo the Physician and by Asclepius and by Hygieia and Panacea and by all the gods . . .". As you know doctors take the Hippocratic oath before they can practise medicine. So I believe the snakes are from Asclepius and the wings from Mercury.

But I may be completely wrong...
@Chiyo - You are not wrong at all. biggrin.gif
Asclepius, who is Apollo's son, and the god of medicine in Greek Mythology thingy, and his staff with the snake wrapping around it, their connection to the Medical symbol is quite correct, IMO. As far as I know, the Caduceus symbol was adopted as a symbol of physicians, in major part, because of its similarity to the staff of Asclepius.
But, I didn't want to go into that far in details about the Medical symbol because I did not want to stray too far from the Flamel Alchemy symbol thingy they were discussing.
Basically, I posted about Cadeceus because sweety_pie posted that Ed's Flamel symbol thingy was also called "Cadecus," but no further information was included on the post. biggrin.gif
Chiyo
Oh I know Tombow, but I didn't know if it would come in handy for determining why Flamel adopted that symbol himself for alchemy. Bit of background info can't hurt, but it may confuse things.
Tombow
^^ Yeah, that's true about Flamel's process of picking that famous "Flamel" symbol. biggrin.gif
As far as confusing readers, I do that way too often!! LOL!! Because, usually, I tend to go on and on, trying to include every relevant information, (because I, myself, would love to have access to all relevant informations out there.. not that I may read all of them, but I like knowing those things exist,) then ended up confusing everybody, (or, bore them to death!!) laugh.gif
sweety_pie
@kitty chow - I think I missed something, 'cause your post did not make sense.


Nicholas Flamel was famous alchemist. He had a dream, and in the dream, an angel brought him a book. On that book was seven symbols, which later were put on his tomb.(Which people argue about rather it was real, or not). One of those symbols is now none as the 'Flamel'.

http://www.levity.com/alchemy/flam_h0.html
*The second pic.
GREEDisGOOD
Although this symbol is called a 'flamel' because of its 'inventor', it is actually used a lot today. Though FMA's depiction of the symbol differs, this symbol is the all too common symbol used by hospitals and the red cross.
Popogeejo
QUOTE(GREEDisGOOD @ Jan 14 2007, 03:05 AM) [snapback]493944[/snapback]
Although this symbol is called a 'flamel' because of its 'inventor', it is actually used a lot today. Though FMA's depiction of the symbol differs, this symbol is the all too common symbol used by hospitals and the red cross.


You are mistaken. The one you are thinking of, Two serpents around the staff of Hermes, is a caduceus.
Chibi_Girl29
kinda... long story i guest... the serpent symbolized ''sin'' and the cross ''god''
gunslinger alchemist
wasn't there a story in the Bible somewhere Where Moses was leading the Isrialites through the dessert and they all got really sick? I think there was. Either Sick or were poisened by snakes. There was a golden snake among the rest, (large snake pit) Moses Nailed that particular snake to a small wooden cross (or rather two sticks tied together) and every one was cured.

Ironic really, The snakes representing sin. This event was ages before Christ was even born.

to be honest, that was what I first thought of When I looked at the symbol on Ed's Coat.
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