Solar Flare Symbolism
I’ve been thinking about solar flare symbolism in the aftermath of a few major solar flares we’ve experienced this month.
In classical symbolism (sourced by the ancient Greeks) the sun is a symbol of:
Our ancient Asian ancestors recognized the Sun as distinctly yang in its essence, with symbolic implications similar to the Greeks, and adding attributes such as: Maleness, assertion and forceful expression.
Astrologically speaking, the sun is a representative of the Self – specifically, the self we choose to show publicly, the side of ourselves exposed to the light of the world.
It’s important to note these symbolic ideals about the sun in order to gain deeper meaning about the solar flare phenomenon. Why? Because it helps to answer the question ‘what does this mean?’ from a deeper, more thoughtful level.
The geeky-science explanation of solar flares deals with pressure release. Solar flares are caused by tremendous magnetic shifts in the three layers of the sun’s atmosphere (photosphere, chromosphere and corona). Opposing magnetic forces manifest gargantuan battles within the sun’s atmospheric layers. These opposing forces eventually produce mammoth expulsions of plasma – hence, a solar storm (or flare – the terms are synonymous).
As a metaphor for life, solar flare symbolism provides an illustration of catharsis after a period of turmoil. All of us experience inner conflict, and release of that conflict is vital. Often, our inner energies are forceful. Sometimes our conflicting emotions feel just as volatile as the energy we see blaze-dancing on the surface of the sun.
Am I suggesting we all explode into raging fire-fiends to release our inner turmoil? No. But, I am encouraging deeper contemplation of releases in Nature (such as seen in solar flares) as an example of the dangers of stuffing our conflicting emotions. If the sun were unable to release the tumult of opposing magnetic forces, damaging implosions would occur, wreaking long-term havoc on itself as well as the Earth.
In short, this solar phenomenon is a perfect example of conflict leading to release which leads to renewed balance.
Cool video from NASA of the solar flares that took place 4/2/14
An interesting symbolic correlation is that sun storms occur at the peak of a solar season, as the sun goes through an active cycle every 11 years. Numerologically speaking, the number 11 represents an initiation with a goal to achieve balance.
In this light, all life experiences conflict which prompts action to seek balance. That renewed balance has tremendous rewards.
How so? Well, a large solar flare produces an array of energetic particles that showers down to the Earth’s atmosphere to create an aurora (like the borealis).
That’s a sweet ending to a solar spat, isn’t it? From a spiritual perspective, we all can experience the glimmery afterglow of an aurora within our lives when we soulfully seek ways to release inner tumult with the expectation of renewed balance.
I’ve written a few more articles about sun symbolism. Click ‘em if you’re interested:
Sun Meanings and Meditation
Native American Sun Symbols
You can catch up on current solar flare activity on the official NASA site here: Solar Flare Activity – April 2014
Image of solar flare used with permission from NASA.