In a Christian context, the Renfrewshire Temple's octagonal shape is a memento of the eight points of the Cross of Calvary and the eight beatitudes
preached by Christ on the Sermon on the Mount.
Like His Holiness, I am quoting these eight beatitudes
The 'eight maids a-milking' are the eight Beatitudes
. For many a sleep-deprived mother, eight could also stand for a full eight hours of sleep at night!
And, of course, in the counter-cultural Eight Beatitudes
in Matthew 5, Jesus says that the "poor in spirit" are blessed.
The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes
She concludes by providing eight beatitudes
of environmental stewardship.
Eight maids a-milking are the eight beatitudes
- the virtues in life Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount.
Eight maids a-milking refers to the eight beatitudes
The other parts of the song also have symbolic meanings as follows: Two turtle doves - the Old and New Testaments Three French hens - the theological virtues of faith, hope, and charity Four calling birds - the four gospels or the four evangelists Five golden rings - the Pentateuch or the first five books of the Bible which describe the fall of humanity from grace Six geese-a-laying - the six days of creation Seven swans-a-swimming - the seven sacraments and the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit Eight maids-a-milking - the eight beatitudes
Nine ladies dancing - the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit Ten Lords-a-leaping - the Ten Commandments Eleven pipers piping - the 11 faithful apostles Twelve drummers drumming - the 12 articles of the Apostles Creed'O
Here are the original words, and the supposed translation into church beliefs: Twelve drummers drumming: twelve church beliefs in the Apostles' Creed Eleven pipers piping: the apostles minus one (Judas); Ten lords a-leaping: Ten Commandments; Nine ladies dancing: nine angelic choirs; Eight maids a-milking: eight beatitudes
; Seven swans a-swimming: the Catholic sacraments; Six geese a-laying: six days of creation; Five golden rings: first five books of the Old Testament; Four calling birds: the Gospels; Three French hens: the gifts of the wise men; Two turtle doves: the Old and New Testaments; A partridge in a pear tree: Jesus himself, and the cross.
There are also Eight Beatitudes
, Ten Commandments, Twelve Apostles, Twelve Fruits of the Holy Spirit, and Twenty-one Ecumenical Councils.
The "eight maids-a-milking" are the eight beatitudes