Occult in Popular Culture

I am fairly well versed in occult symbols since I wrote my masters thesis on the subject. I don’t expect other people to know them…and neither do script writers. If you see symbols being used in a TV show like Supernatural, they are pretty much always a random collection of symbols.

Ok, whatever. I’m fine with that. I am also fine with them just making symbols up. There’s no reason why we in the real world are aware of every magical symbol out there.

Symbols are not Magical

However, in the real work these symbols are often not even considered magical in and of themselves (by people who actually use them). They are used as shorthand and code in alchemical and similar texts.

Ok, whatever. The average person doesn’t know that. Also, in the real world angels and demons don’t walk around among us, so maybe these symbols work differently in the Supernatural world.

The Magical Pie Chart

However, I have to draw the line when writers grab random images rather than random symbols.

Robert Fludd's Plan of Universal Causes
Robert Fludd’s Plan of Universal Causes

I wish I could remember the specific context this was used. I know Sam and Dean were doing a ritual, and they had a book in hand and this was on the page.

It’s not a magical symbol, nor is it part of ritual instruction. It’s a chart of the hierarchy of the universe and the correspondences between various parts, which was a central concept in Renaissance occultism.

It is not technically a pie chart, despite my heading. But to work a ritual off of this thing makes just as much sense as working off of a pie chart. It just doesn’t make sense.


  1. I loved this article but some people think angels walk

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