A few years ago, my business partner and son-in-law and I were hired to photograph all the Mormon Temples in the United States. We shot about 2/3’s of them before the funding ran out. It was a singularly satisfying experience. Not only were the temples themselves interesting to photograph, but the details — small and often overlooked — were also fascinating. We learned that when photographing architecture, it was as important to get the little picture — the small details — as it was to get the big picture — the entire temple.

The gallery below is a compilation of some of the circle and square symbolism found on many of those temples.

The circle symbolizes heaven while the square symbolizes earth. In this instance, the circle and square combined stands for the temple itself: the place on earth where heaven and earth meet. The circle also represents infinity while the square represents the finite. The combination of the two is spoken of as eternal. The circle can also symbolize woman and the square symbolizes man. When combined, the circle and square represent marriage. And when these last two ideas are combined, it represents eternal marriage.