Archetypal structure in tryptamine or pineal art

Archetypal structure or mindprint in tryptamine art

This post demonstrates the five layers of standard subconscious archetypal structure in some artworks by Shawn Thornton, who paints in a style typical of tryptamine-induced visions. He suffered from pineal gland cancer at the base of the brain. Thornton uses few figurative characters, some semi-abstracts, and many abstract shapes, yet some features of the sixteen archetypes, in sequence, with their eyes on the axial grid, around the five polar junctures, and the cosmic time frame, appear in all his artworks, as they do in all complex artworks (containing eleven or more characters) worldwide.
There are no structuralist differences between art associated with coffee, sugar, alcohol, DMT, mescaline, psilocybin, tryptamine, or sober art (see other posts with these stylistic tags on my four sites:

The only differences are in styling and texture, which are inherently meaningless, and part of the optional repertoire for appropriating culture to a socio-economic polity or cult.
All complex abstract artworks, and rock art works (typically containing many abstract shapes among figurative shapes) also express mindprint (see Furter 2017, in the anthropology journal Expression 13: Abstract signs reveal archetypal structure in culture). Some recurrent ‘abstract’ shapes in art and rock art are figurative, but stylised, or poorly drawn. Part of their meanings lies in what they occasionally illustrate of other cultural media, such as myth, ritual, and conventions. But their core meaning is in their inherent differentiation, that we feel an innate and subconscious compulsion to express, and to associate with parts of other cultural sets.
Structuralist analysis of abstract forms in rock art, and art of pre-civilised, pre-literate, literate, and a-literate cultures, including Mayan or Mexican cultures, confirms that the core content of art is universal and subconscious, but within conscious reach due to the discovery of recurrent structured behaviour.
Artworks use figurative and abstract shapes interchangeably, along with many other variations allowed by the standard visual ‘grammar’ or ‘DNA’ of culture. Abstracts do not arise from conventional signs, myths, rituals, oto-visual (entoptic) experience, zodiacs, or alphabets. All cultural media equally contain abstracts.
Rock artists and schooled artists are ignorant of the details and layers of the structure they express. Even close study of cultural media by artists, does not affect the core content of art, nor the structural quality of expressions, which varies within narrow, predictable ranges.

An abstract chart of the labels, sequence, ocular (eye to eye) axial grid, polar points of pairs of opposite, and Age calibrator of the subconscious structure of cultural expression.

Universal elements of cultural expression (after Furter 2014: p50-51, p82-84). Each of the 12 main types, or expanded 16 types, appears in all groups of eleven or more figurative or abstract characters in art or building sites (Furter 2016; Stoneprint). Each type is identified by one or more of its optional featues, totalling about 60% of the currently known features. The four potentially doubled types (1 /2 v 8/9, and 5a/5b v 12/13) have nearly identical options, but they usually express different options when doubled. The eyes of typological characters are always spaced on an axial grid, with the constant exception of type/s 12/13 on a chest, and type 11 on a womb. Recurrent features include certain species, postures, items, and/or shapes.

Below is the standard list of archetype, in sequence, each with their known features (some of which have known average frequencies of occurrence), after Furter 2014; Mindprint (, and Ingram), and 2016; Stoneprint, and updated in editions of Stoneprint Journal ( Among the types are listed the four intervening half-types or Baskets (which appear in four sectors between certain axes); and the two galactic cross-points; and two of the polar points. The other three polar points are listed after the types:

Mindprint or stoneprint structuralist analysis format

Cut and paste these labels, to identify characters and structuralist points on a map or artwork. Pairs of opposites are given above/below one another. Some pairs may remain unused, often the Cistas, or 1v8, or 5a v12. Use ? ? for extra figures that do not have a limb joint at one of the five poles:

1Builder 2Builder 2cBasket 3Queen 4King 4p
8Healer 9Healer 9cLid 10Teacher 11Womb 11p


5aPriest 5bPriest 5cTail 6Exile 7Child 7g
12Heart 13Heart 13cHead 14Mixer 15Maker 15g


cp csp ? ?

Use this list to write a caption for the structuralist analysis of any complex artwork of building site:

1 and/or 2 Builder or Taurus; (twisted 48%, tower 22%, bovid 19%, cluster 14%, pit 13%, bird 10%, book 6%.
2c Basket; secret 17%, container 13%, woven texture 13%.
3 Queen or Aries; (long or bent neck 37%, dragon 14%, sacrifice 13%, school 11%, empress 9%, pool 9%, spring 6%, equid.
4 King or Pisces; (squat 25%, rectangle 20%, twins 11%, king 9%, bird 6%, field 6%, furnace.
4p Gal.S.Pole; (marked 65%, limb joint 50%, juncture, spout 13%.
5a/5b Priest or Aquarius; (assembly 30%, varicoloured 30%, hyperactive 30%, horizontal 30%, priest 15%, water 15%, tailcoat head, heart of 12, inverted of 12, equid.
5c Basket Tail; (weave, knot, riddle.
6 Exile or Capricornus; (egress/ingress 48%, sacrifice 13%, small 13%, U-shape 11%, tree, volute, reptile, amphibian, horned, double-headed.
7 Child or Sagittarius; (unfolding 17%, bag 13%, rope 12%, juvenile 10%, chariot 8%.
7g Galactic Centre: (water 15%, gate.
8/9 Healer or Scorpius; (pillar 50%, bent forward 30%, healer 11%, strength 9%, ritual.
9c Basket Lid; (revelation 15%, law enforcement 9%, disc, snake.
10 Teacher or Libra; (arms V/W-posture 50%, staff 17%, council 17%, guard 15%, market 8%, metallurgy 8%, crown /disc /wheel 10%, school 8%, canid, hunt master, ecology.
11 Womb or Virgo; (womb /interior 87%, mother 60%, tomb 13%, water 11%, library 11%, wheat 6%, law 6%.
11p Galactic Pole: (marked 81%, limb joint 68%, juncture.
12/13 Heart or Leo; (heart /chest /interior 85%, felid 20%, death 33%, water-work 30%, rounded 26%, bastion 22%, war 17%, weapon 13%, palace 11%, inverted).
13c Basket Head; (prediction 11%, texture 6%).
14 Mixer or Cancer; (ingress /egress 50%, bird 10%, tree 6%, canid.
15 Maker or Gemini; (rope 30%, order 25%, bag 10%, face 10%, doubled 10%, pool 8%, canid 8%, creation, churn, sceptre, mace, rampant.
15g Galactic Gate; (gate 20%, river 6%,

Axial centre; Usually unmarked (limb-joint 26%, juncture),
Midsummer or celestial pole; (limb joint or juncture 50%).
Midwinter or celestial south pole; (limb joint or juncture 37%).

The vertical or horizontal plane (or cardinal direction on a building site) confirm/s nidsummer in/between axes 12/13/14/15 or Leo12 /Cancer /Gemini, thus spring and the cultural time-frame in Age Taurus1 /Taurus2 /Aries /Pisces /Aquarius5a; often confirmed by emphasis on the character expressing the spring point.”

Two structuralist analyses of artworks by Shawn Thornton, using cosmology labels (generic labels used after 2018 appear above).

Uroburos and abstracts by Shawn Thornton (cosmologyt labels and axial grid by Edmond Furter).

This artwork may be part of a larger artwork, which probably has its own mindprint, including some of the major characters in this detail. ‘Nuclear’ imprints are typical of highly complex artworks and building sites (such as the Vatican City mindprint, while St Peter’s cathedral expresses the type 3 Queen or Aries of the larger Rome mindprint).

Large panel with virgin or woman by Shawn Thornton. Cosmology labels and axial grid by Edmond Furter.


PD Newman on the pineal gland as inner eye

Here are some extracts from a discussion of various psychoactive drugs, and their stylistic occurrence in cultural crafts such as alchemy, symbolism, art, ritual and religion, on,1130498,1131017#msg-1131017
posted in 2017 -2018, prompted by an article on acacia gum by PD Newman:
PD Newman; ‘In an attempt to discover the source and function of endogenous DMT production in humans organism, Dr Rick Strassman at the University of New Mexico conducted government sanctioned research with a scheduled psychedelic. DMT was largely unknown to the Western world, up to Strassman’s book; DMT: The Spirit Molecule. The research was funded by the Scottish Rite Schizophrenia Research Foundation, a subsidiary of the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite [in the USA]… The most probable source of endogenous DMT production in humans is the pineal gland, which has “a lens, cornea, and retina. It is light-sensitive and helps regulate body temperature and skin coloration, related to environmental light,” or third eye. [However this conclusion is not universally accepted. See]

“In daylight, the pineal gland induces serotonin, which regulates appetite, mood, body movement, and other regulatory functions. A night, it produces melatonin, which regulates sleep patterns and body coloration.
The pineal may secrete DMT at psychedelic levels, at extraordinary experiences, enabling conscious experience of our life-force or soul. When our individual life force enters our foetal body, as we become humans, it passes through the pineal and triggers the first flood of DMT.
At birth the pineal also releases DMT. It may mediate experiences of deep meditation, psychosis, or near-death experience. At death, life-force leaves the body through the pineal gland, releasing DMT.”
Thus the pineal gland may be the seat of the soul, and DMT the catalyst. Some people use the compound as a sacrament.
In 2013, Cottonwood Research Foundation Inc announced that DMT is found in the pineal glands of rats.
René Descartes had proposed a similar function for the pineal gland. In Inter-Relation of Soul and Body, he wrote that the soul exercises its function particularly in the pineal. “suspended between passages containing animal spirits [reason, sensation and movement], that it can be moved by them…; and carries this motion to the soul… Conversely, the body is so constituted that when the gland is moved by the soul, or by another cause, it pushes the animal spirits to the pores of the brain.”
The pineal is the only single, not duplicated organ in the human brain. Thoughts and creativity may arise here. The acacia sprig in Freemasonry could refer to insight, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil. WL Wilmshurst wrote in 1922; Meaning of Masonry; “the entire nervous system contributes to charge certain ganglia, and light up certain brain centres, in a way of which the ordinary mind knows nothing… It is a mystery of spiritual consciousness, efflorescence of the mind in God, opening of human intelligence, in conscious association…”
McKenna noted that “a compound which each of us carries… in the ajna chakra; the philosopher’s stone… how can this be secret?” -PD Newman.

[Edmond Furter commented; The pineal gland is a temperature sensor in dynosaurs and their survivors, on top of the flat skull, for comparing internal and external temperature. Mammals have brains intervening, with a sturdy little bone cradle for the pineal at the base of the skull, near the spinal cord. Thus it reacts to indirect data, like most of our senses. There is some delay in the temperature equation, even for months, allowing us to delay homeostasis. Visions may perhaps be partly due to oto-temperature emissions, similar to oto-acoustic and oto-visual (entoptic) emissions.
In reflexology, the pineal node on the hand is on the index finger (which some gynosophic traditions press against the thumb in mediation) at type 4p, analogous to the Galactic South Pole). In the iris the pineal node is in the eleven /one o’clock positions, at type 15g (Galactic Gate). In our teeth the pineal node could be right top six, with the eyes node, at type 15g (Galactic Gate), but an alternative analysis of the fourfold set of reflects in teeth, charts this tooth as type 7g (Galactic Centre). In our inner ears, the brain stem is on the seven o clock position, at type 15 Maker or Gemini. Thus our pineal gland, between the spine and the brain, in cosmological terms, expresses the two galactic ‘gates’, where the ecliptic and galactic equators cross (one of which is adjacent to the galactic centre); and perhaps the two galactic poles. If the myth map in star lore could reveal anything about the role of the pineal in cultural terms, it may be sought in the archetypes attached to the gates, sometimes pictured as short or angled pillars with spiral churns; and to 11p Coma Berenices (Hair of Berenice), sometimes pictured as a baby in a lotus flower, on the same axle as Crater (Grail); and 4p Cetus spout, on the same axis as Pegaus neck. Esoteric literature in this context seems to favour the 7g pillar of Ophiuchus, as in the Apprentice Pillar of Hiram Abiff; and 11p as Aion, angel dangling head down from the ecliptic pole and Bootes’ hand; and Crater, Grail or head. These motifs all seem idiosyncratic, incidental, and legendised history, until they are studied in structuralist context. I demonstrated that we subconsciously express a very rigorous universal structure in artworks and building sites, with some evidence that the same applies to myth, ritual and calendars too. Now the question is no longer when and where archetypal motifs ‘come from’, but to what extent we subconsciously collude to engineer archetypal events, and selectively record and imagine events. And to what extent our endocrine system, glands, nerves and senses participate in the bigger picture of perception and re-expression.]

-Barbelo, alias PWH, commented on PD Newman; ‘I agree that the ancient myths, texts, star lore etc has more than one application. But the invisible precedes the visible, and it’s near impossible to convey the meaning of the invisible. Inner workings… were discussed in outward terms, analogy, story, star myth, totem, iconography… the journey up the Tree is a personal experience… [crafts] start aspirants on the path, and guide them as best as possible. The winged bird-man holds a pine cone pointed at the pineal gland. Who was first?’ -Barbelo /PWH.

[Edmond Furter commented; There are no ‘firsts’ in the expression of archetype. Every expression is equally ‘original’, and all expressions imitate similar types from various media to some extent. Correspondence theory assumes simplistic diffusion, and thus assumes starting points for everything. Nothing ever originated at a specific place or time, and nothing is ever lost. Even technologies are pre-existent and eternal, and are merely resumed when resources such as population enable them.]

PD Newman; ‘It is all about inner experience… In Jungian psychology, Tiphareth may be related to the transcendent function and to the archetype of the self, toward which the process of individuation strives. It is conjunction, union of opposites, merging of conscious and unconscious.
In his book ‘Strange Fruit,’ Heinrich relates the prevalence of mountaintop enlightenment scenarios to fly agaric mushrooms found there.
Traditions depict Moses with horns, perhaps the Hebrew word for ‘shining’, but Alexander was also depicted with horns in Islamic art.
Broker commented; “Horns convey eminence, loftiness, power, as of horned animals. See Apollo-Karneios, and Dionysos. Alexander adopted the emblem of Amon, ram, in the Egyptian Book of the Dead he is Lord of Two Horns. In Chinese myth, the terrible Ch’e Yu is horned. Huang Ti could only defeat is only by blowing on a horn. He used his rival’s standard, which bore his portrait and strength. In Gaul and elsewhere, warriors wore horned helmets. But it is not only about physical strength.
Horns of oxen signify fertility (Menghin, in Eliade; Patterns in Comparative Religion, p164).
In Jewish and Christian tradition, horns are equated with a ray of light or a lightning flash, as in Habakkuk3;4 ‘His brightness was as light, horns coming out of his hand.’ Moses descends from Mount Sinai (Exod34;29); ‘he wist not that his face shone’. Four horns of the altar of sacrifice exprfess four quarters of space, as cosmic extent of God’s power.
In Psalms, horns symbolize God’s strength, ‘The Lord is my rock… my buckler, the horn of my salvation’ (Ps18;2). It borders on aggression and pride; ‘Lift not up your horn on high, speak not with a stiff neck’ (Ps75;4). Horns are a boon; ‘I will make the horn of David to bud’ (Ps132;17).’
PD Newman replied; ‘Jung also commented at length on the symbolism of horns in “Aion” (CW 9:2), IIRC… Huxley discusses his experience with mescaline, the active compound of Lophophora williamsii, or peyote cactus. Regarding ergot [LSD], see Wasson, Hofmann, and Ruck; Road to Eleusis. -PD Newman.

Here are some images from my paper on abstract artworks (in the anthropology journal Expression 13), to compare to modern abstract artworks.

Hittite abstract characters, with the standard subconscious structuralist labels and axial grid by E Furter.

A ‘Hittite hieroglyphic text’ (after Gelb 1939. Cosmology labels and axial grid by E Furter). The figures and abstracts may be myths, hours, months, gods, stars, or syllables; derivative or original. Either way, they subconsciously express the standard archetypal structure:

2 Builder or Taurus; Bird (bird, see swift people, Furter 2014: 108-109), wing twisted (twisted).
3 Queen or Aries; Dolphin /crayfish (Triangulum and Cetus tail myths. See Tarot trump 18, moon over dragons and crayfish), with bent tailfins (more often bent neck).
4 King or Pisces; Hand, ‘Child’? (king?), with ribbon? (Horus Eye shape?), and another on the same axis (twinned).
4p G.S.Pole; Thumb (limb-joint).
5 Priest or Aquarius; Rectangles (Pegasus myth). See H/I-shapes at Gobekli Tepe (Expression 9: 22).
5c Basket Tail; Curve. C-types are off the axial grid, but in sectors between specific axes.
6 Exile or Capricornus; U-shaped camp (see Narmer palette).
7 Child or Sagittarius; Curve (rope? Or adjacent 7g Galaxy).
7g Galaxy; Radiant Cone (brightest area).
9 Healer or Scorpius; Scales, ‘High king’ (Ophiuchus myth), arms out, healer, pillar; and an ankh person (healer, and pillar).
9c Basket Lid; Crown? (cover. Corona myth).
10 Teacher or Libra; Womb (exchanged with 11), arms forward (arms V/W posture).
11 Womb or Virgo; Woman, large eye (her womb exchanged with 10, perhaps by subconscious confusion of opposite 3 Queen or Aries dolphin, as 4 King or Pisces fish. Cetus /Whale is a decan of both). The halved circle could mean ‘womb’, or adjacent 11p Galactic Pole. See the circle at the pregnant vulture at Gobekli Tepe (Expression 9: 22).
11p Galactic Pole; Heel (limb-joint).
13 Heart or Leo; Purse /weight, ‘Man’ (heart), horizontal (invert).
14 Cancer; Falcon (bird), under a crook (decan Ursa Minor).
15 Gemini; Face /speaker /creator /eel (rope)? And a doublie (doubled).
15g Gate; Curve (crossing or path?).

Briazil, Pedra Pintada engraving (after Homet. Cosmology labels and axial grid after E Furter, Expression 13, 2016).

Brazil, Pedra Pintada engraving of an oval shield or palette with abstract characters, and geometric signs in a border (after Homet 1962. Mindprint labels and axial grid by E Furter). The copyist may have imposed some styling, thus perhaps a variant structure. This is not an alphabet or text. The border characters are more abstract, like determinants, perhaps divinatory, but also decorative. The archetypal structure is:

1 Builder or Taurus; Twisted (twisted) dragon (more usual at 3).
2 Builder or Taurus; Bird (bird) with neck twisted (twist).
2c Basket; Dragon body (cistas are usually off the grid).
3 Queen or Aries; Dragon with a long neck (neck long/bent).
4 King or Pisces; Man’s head (more usual at 15).
4p G.S.Pole; Headband tassels (varicoloured of 5).
5b Priest or Aquarius; Cocoon or mummy tailcoat-head (of adjacent 6), reclining (30% horizontal).
5b Priest or Aquarius; Heart (often as its opposite, 13) of a bauble (varicoloured), reclining (horizontal).
5c Basket Tail; Snake tail (tail).
6 Exile or Capricornus; Horned snake? (horned; snake).
7 Child or Sagittarius; Rope animal (rope).
8 Healer or Scorpius; Cocoon or mummy (more usual at 7).
9 Healer or Scorpius; Placenta, or bauble baby (child is more usual at 7), bent sideways (bent forward), OFF THE GRID or opposite a character in the bird’s throat
9c Basket Lid; Woven (texture).
10 Teacher or Libra; Woman (usually a man), W-posture (arms up), with sceptre (staff).
11 Womb or Virgo; Womb (womb).
11p G.Pole; Hair? on bellows?
12 Heart or Leo; Puma (felid).
13 Heart or Leo; Heart (heart) of the puma (felid), under a sun? (former summer).
13c Basket Head; Mats or hoed fields (texture), and a weaver or ploughman.
14 Mixer or Cancer; Hoe? (decan Ursa Minor), over a star (celestial pole); far from the centre (egress).
15 Maker or Gemini; Rope and bag man (rope, bag).

Archetypal structure in a rock art cosmogram

In the Brazilian engraving copy, the celestial poles may be on the vertical plane, placing summer in Cancer, thus spring and the cultural time-frame in Age Aries. The general theme is type 3 Queen or Aries, of long and bent necks (three animal shapes, and a hat top, and two baubles), and palette or shield shapes (as in the border. See the Narmer palette, in Furter 2014: 118). Compare transitional ambiguity with polar decans.

The structuralist analysis score….. [see a scoring format update in later posts]… is about 62%, near the average. Abstract shapes are as capable of structural expression, as figurative art is.

Psychograms express structure, enabling meaning

Viewing recurrent rock art geometric shapes as pictographs or proto-syllables, is speculation, based on paradigmatic developmental assumptions about ancient art; not supported by studies of historic art (Gombrich 1979); nor linguistics (Chomsky 1991). We could interpret abstract ‘signs’ as psychograms (Anati 2010), in the sense of universal, compulsive, subconscious expressions, of elements of narrowly variant archetypal structure. Anthropology could study visual elements, as linguistics study grammar; as sociologists study inter-relationships; as physics study chemistry and mathematics. We learn more of culture, its crafts, perception, and ultimately of nature, from the structure of artefacts, than we learn from the conscious meanings that various re-creators imagine that they express, or convey, or explain. Art is as deceptive as grammar. Most people view it as logical and incidental accumulation of conventional rules, passed along by learning, and ‘developed’, while it is innate and eternal. Language seems to be wholly abstract, and arbitrary, but under the layer of conventional allocations of short strings of sounds to meanings, lies a hard-wired structure, that requires only a few social prompts to apply to various media (gestures, sounds, items, signs), and thus transform media into a ‘carrier wave’ of meanings. Mindprint reveals variant ‘meanings’ to be as rule-bound as the innate structure.
Art is too laborious to serve fickle ‘here and now’ communication, however it is more immediate, but more subconscious, in reading, than language. Art has a higher function, to express the core content of nature, perception, and culture, in an apparently endless variety of combinations and styles. Abstract signs seem to be abbreviated psychograms for more elaborate styling, perhaps a visual shorthand for culture. However their core functions could not be separated from picture characters, nor from the five layers of structure, which is the abstract matrix of all possible meaning. ‘Abstract’ also means recall, evocation, and conjuring of the absent. Pictures and signs both invite the assumption that art is primarily a record or events or imagination, with some decorative or poetic structure added for entertainment. However art evokes, distills, abbreviates, elaborates and distorts as well, or better than language.
Our ability to learn pictograms and hieroglyphs of foreign cultures, illustrate the universality of cultural structure. Gelb (1952) wrote that “Chinese writing appears in the Shang dynasty, as a fully developed phonetic system. Its outer from has change greatly in the course of its long history, but its inner characteristics of the oldest inscriptions hardly differ from recent times.” If Chinese and Egyptian hieroglyphic sets expresses, over millennia, the same five-layered structure that art is now found to express, then our definitions of art, pictogram, sign, ideogram, psychogram, hieroglyph, alphabet, communication, grammar, ritual, culture, and human, should involve the concepts of archetype. Anthropology may have to leave ‘evolution’ to biology; ‘diffusion’ to technology; and ‘crypto-astronomy’ to conspiracy theorists. Structural study of art, including abstract rock art, has significant implications for several human sciences.

Some sources and references
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Anati, E. 2010 World rock art: the primordial language. Oxford: Archaeopress
Butin, R.F. 1932 Protosinaitic Inscriptions. Harvard Theological Review, Vol 25 No.2
Chomsky, N, and M. Halle. 1968; 1991 Sound pattern of English. London: MIT Press
Furter, E. 2014 Mindprint, the subconscious art code. USA: Lulu
Furter, E. 2015a Gobekli Tepe, between rock art and art. Expression 9: 21-25
Furter, E. 2015b Art is structural magic, not illustration. Expression 10: 15-22
Furter, E. 2016 Abstract signs reveal archetypal structure in culture. In Expression 13, Sept
Furter, E. 2016 Stoneprint, the human code in art, buildings and cities. Four Equators Media, Johannesburg
Furter, E. 2017 Pictish Beasts. Stoneprint Journal 1, p1-16. Four Equators Media, Johannesburg, and
Gelb, I.J. 1939 Hittite hieroglyphic monuments. Chicago. Fig 38
Gelb, I.J. 1942 Hittite hieroglyphs, iii. Chicago. Frontispiece table
Gelb, I.J. 1952 A study of writing, Chicago: University of Chicago Press
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Newman, PD. 2017-2018. Comments and replies to comments on his own Author of the Month article on acacia drugs and the pineal gland,,1130498,1131017#msg-1131017
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