Category Archives: Nature Symbolism

Blessings From the Bluebird

bluebird meanings
When you see a bluebird, expect a blessing!

The Beauty of Bluebird Meaning

I saw a bluebird this morning. Some folks might say, "So what? Big deal!" Well actually, it is a big deal.  The bluebird is legendary in many cultures for being an extremely good omen.

My sighting of this bright beauty could not have come at a better time.  You see, I'm going through a real crummy phase in life. I suppose all of us are to an extent. Nobody's life is perfect. But these days have been pretty freaking dark for me. So seeing the bluebird really lifted my spirits.

Maybe that seems flimsy in the face of some serious crud I'm going through - but on the other hand - sometimes it's the smallest blessings that get us through a brutal moment. Wouldn't you agree?

I think many Native American tribes would agree.  Pueblo, Iroquois and Navajo all viewed the bluebird as a rare and beautiful sign of prosperity. This good fortune was particularly relevant in terms of fertility. When someone in the tribe spotted a bluebird, it was a clear sign of some kind of new birth or blessing on the horizon.

All this symbolism has a lot to do with the season the bluebird is associated with. In Native perspective, the bluebird represents springtime. This time of year represents lovely things like: Growth, birth, change and renewal. So it's no wonder the bluebird is a signal of some good changes cropping up in our lives.

The bluebird is also helpful in times of serious transition. There is an old Native Pima legend that expresses the bluebird's connection to positive change. The legend says that once upon a time there was a terribly ugly bird that hung around the camp.  One day, the unsightly bird found a magical lake situated close to the tribe.  After bathing several times in the lake's special waters, the ugly bird was transformed into a beautiful blue wonder-bird.

I think the moral of this story addresses exactly what I am going through, and what many of you might be enduring too.  This legend points to some ugly times in our lives. But as we move through life, we are bound to experience some gifts of promise and faith.  By submerging ourselves in healing waters of hope and anticipating positive results, we are blessed on our journey through transitioning into a better phase of life.

I hope this post on bluebird meaning offers you some hope and assurance.

As always, thanks for reading.

May all your moments be blessed with bluebird beauty,

Avia

More on Bluebird Meaning and Symbolism Here

Symbolic Thunderbolt Meaning

thunderbolt meaning
From Chinese to Celtic, thunderbolt meaning is a deep symbolic element around the world.

Crashing Into Classic Thunderbolt Meaning

The most basic definition of thunderbolt meaning is when a flash of lightning happens while thunder strikes at the exact same time. The occurrence of thunder and lightning clashing together at the same time is uncommon.  I think that, in itself, is symbolic.

When Nature tosses out something rare in our experience, it is worthy of a second look…it’s worthy of some pondering.

Thankfully, ancient cultures around the world have done a lot of pondering about thunderbolt meaning already.  The following points offer some views about how the thunderbolt is perceived in different ways.




thunderbolt meaning

Say what??
Before meteorology and science explained away the wonder of phenomenons like thunderbolts, we humans only had our imaginations to explain such epic events. Around the world, the occurrence of the thunderbolt was thought of as a colossal shout from big, magical sources. Whether angel, god or goddess – the thunderbolt announced a message from an immensely powerful source. Essentially, witnessing and hearing a thunderbolt was akin to receiving a message from the heavens.

thunderbolt meaning

It is ALIVE!
Thunderbolt meaning deals with the creation of life. Perhaps the best example of this is found in that singular, memorable scene in any movie version of Frankenstein. When the thunderbolt struck the creature, it animated Frankenstein’s vision. The Buddhists give us the idea of ‘the rolling Dharma thunder.’ Dharma is the order of life, the order of the cosmos. In this case, the thunderbolt is a symbol of liberating life, and igniting the cycle of living.

thunderbolt meaningOkay, maybe it’s not so alive.
With every ancient cultural view that sees the thunderbolt as a spark of creation, most of the same views also see it as a source of destruction. Look at Zeus (Jupiter). The thunderbolt is one of his symbols. He is considered a creator-father god in Greek-Roman myth. But he was also feared for his destructive tendencies. In Native American myth, the thunderbolt is associated with the Thunder Bird.  This mega-bird is symbolic of the great Creator, it also represents some wicked-destructive forces.

thunderbolt meaning
Is that a thunderbolt in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?
The idea of fertility is part and parcel with the creative aspect of thunderbolt meaning.  In many ancient cultures, the thunderbolt is a symbol of libido, virility and fertility.  Anybody who drools over the Thor character in the Marvel comics movies can formulate exactly what I mean. In fact, a thunderbolt is one of this Scandinavian god’s symbols. I guess you could say Thor, and his thunderbolt are kinda like a sex symbols. If you consider the shape of lightning, it’s like a rod. I don’t want to get too graphic here, but let’s just say it causes us to be ‘erect’ in our thinking about the thunderbolt. The simultaneous boom is a very orgasmic feature too. I’ll let your own imagination do the rest of the work when it comes to the thunderbolt as a symbol of virility and fertility.

thunderbolt meaningFlash! Bam! Alakazam!
You know that Nat King Cole song? “Orange Colored Sky” Nat croons that he’s just walking along, minding his own business, and then WHAM! He got stone-cold smashed with inspiration. In his case, he was struck by love. Thunderbolt meaning can certainly be symbolic of being blind-sided by love.  It is also symbolic of being struck by a bright idea. The thunderbolt represents a split second moment of tremendous inspiration.  In Hinduism, the thunderbolt of Indra and Krishna are synonymous with the awakening of the Third Eye. This is a fancy way of saying the thunderbolt represents enlightenment, a spark of intelligence and getting groundbreaking ideas.

Closing Thoughts on Symbolic Thunderbolt Meaning

Whether perceived as a symbol of war and destruction, or an icon for creativity and inspiration – it should be clear thunderbolt meaning is surrounded with lots of smashing concepts.

I hope this post offered you some thunderously thought-provoking moments.  I also hope you take your curiosity about thunderbolt meaning further by doing your own research. I’ve got a few links to other related articles that might keep your symbolic search energized.

As always, thanks for reading!

Thunderbolt blessings to you,

Avia

Symbolic Meaning of Lightning

Dreaming Meaning of Storms and Lightning

Symbolic Meaning of the Thunderbird

 

Cactus Acts – Humans and Cactus Meaning

cactus meaning

Lessons Learned About Humans and Cactus Meaning

I’ll try to keep this random thought about cactus meaning short. Those who follow my work know I can get wordy.  I really don’t mean to, but there is so much to say about every item that is symbolic (which is pretty much everything, if you ask me).




You see, there is this little cactus that managed to survive this last winter and the harsh freeze that came with it.  I had many plants I tried to protect from this arctic episode…about 20 cactus and succulents, but this guy is one of three who refused to relinquish its life.

I think there is big cactus meaning and symbolism here. I think the harder you work on surviving, the bigger and better your results, and you can see that from the blossoms this guy brought forth.

I’ve had this cactus for 4 years.  It’s not grown much. I still love it, and care for it. But NEVER did I EVER expect it to give me FIFTEEN awesome blossoms!  I kid you not.  I wonder if it wasn’t the rigid-frigid winter that made this beastie go all wondrous on me.

That made me contemplate what makes humans blossom.  I think we have to be pushed. Maybe we have to be shoved to produce impressive results.

But perhaps not always. Cactus, like humans are born with extraordinary resources, skills, acumen and defense systems. We are born with the same stuff! Together, human and cactus can get by in this world just fine. We are divinely designed.

cactus meaning

As far as cactus meaning goes, I think these mysterious plants share  a lot of lessons. Here’s a list I cooked up that I’ve observed over the years:

Cactus Meaning and Human Lessons

♦  Some of us have to be born with spears and armor to defend ourselves. It’s just the way it is.

♦  Some of us are equipped with enormous resources….it just might take a few years for those resources to become visible to the outside world.

♦  Some of us might be the prickly or toughest beings on the outside, or at first glance.  But when our time is right…WHOA! – Getta a load of our beauty, and be prepared to be astounded by our glory!

In short, I hope this post on cactus meaning applied to the human condition might help you in some way.  It certainly has me.

As always, thanks for reading. If you liked this article, you might like a few other related posts liked here:

Symbolic Meanings of Gardens

Symbolic Meaning of Flowers

Cracking Into Symbolic Egg Meaning

symbolic egg meaning
Egg meaning is a lot more profound that what we find in our Easter baskets or Sunday skillets

Not-So-Simple Symbolic Egg Meaning





Such a simple, benign looking thing.  So unassuming.  Sure, it’s the ‘incredible edible egg’, but the egg is also incredibly symbolic. Consider: All life comes from some kind of egg, whether in the form of seed underground, or a vessel within the womb.

As Easter is fast approaching, I thought it might be cool to talk about symbolic egg meaning on a broader scale.

This being the month of April, it’s noteworthy that the full moon of this month is called the Egg Moon.  This is according to Native American Iroquois tradition.  This full moon prompts us to celebrate the explosion of bright beauty surging forth by the prompting of the Egg Moon. This Native American moon signifies the birth and creation of new life across the land.  Furthermore, the Native belief is this moon actually lures the life out of the ground, encouraging sprouts to spring to life.  Learn more about meaning of Native American Moon Names here.

Also this time of year, the egg is used in Christianity as a symbol of the resurrection of Christ.  In essence, the egg is a metaphor for Christ breaking the for from the tomb of death just as new life cracks out of the casing of an egg.  This comparison is featured during springtime festivals like Easter which deals with Christ’s spiritual ascendance and resurgence, as well as the celebrating the return of spring.

On the whole, egg meaning deals with fertility and creation. Countless creation myths begin with a grandiose, cosmic egg. Upon breaking open, the contents ooze out and begin forming the universe as it is known in whatever culture telling the story.

symbolic egg meaning
Alchemists belief the entire universe was hatched from an egg

In Alchemy, the yellow yolk is symbolic of gold, and the sun.  This yolk stands for vibrant goodies like: Life, Vitality, Light and Truth. The albumen (that white slimy stuff) signifies silver and the moon. The albumen is symbolic of neat things like: Support, Purification, Clarification, Nourishment.


Alchemists have fascinating beliefs about the egg as the origin of all life.  This is shown in intricate illustrations of a serpent wrapped around the cosmic egg. This serpent is often called a uroboros…it is the serpent that eats its own tail.  This is symbolic of always coming back full circle. The uroboros hugging the egg of the universe is symbolic of the ever recycling nature of life.  There is no end or beginning, always a return to the source.  That’s pretty heavy, I know, but there isn’t much in Alchemy that’s sweet and simple. In short, the serpent wrapped around the cosmic egg is symbolic of: Beginnings, Renewal, Infinite Potenential.

The egg is also a universal symbol of promise and potential. Within any egg, at any given time, there rests dormant the possibility of life Within that possibility of life infinite diversity. What I mean is, the egg prompts questions of potential like: How will this life manifest? Green eyes or blue? Prince or pauper? Rooster or hen? Fuzzy or silky? Genius or diabolic?  In this sense, egg meaning also reminds us of the delicate balance of duality.  In a way, the egg is a yin yang symbol.  There is no such thing as all good or all bad.  There is always a mix.  But there is always a higher probability for certain traits.

Symbolic Meaning of Uroboros

Meaning of Alchemy Symbols

The Saga of Naga Meaning

naga meaning
Nagas protecting a Thai temple

Secret Life of Nagas and Naga Meaning





If you’ve been following my work for any length of time, you might notice I get jazzed about snakes.  For a myriad of reasons, snakes have always been my source of inspiration and wisdom. Perhaps it has to do with their symbolism of duality.  A staggering collection of cultural myths consider the serpent a symbol of contradiction like: light vs. dark, creation vs. destruction, good vs. evil, etc. I dig that.

The simple answer to ‘what is a naga?’ is this : It is a serpent.  Yep, naga meaning translates to ‘snake’.  But that’s where simplicity ends. Various forms of nagas are found all across Asia and India.  Each naga tells a different tale according to its location.

In India, snakes have been honored for centuries.  To prove my point about duality, Hindu belief identifies the snake as having two distinct personalities.  In this culture, nagas are both holy and maniacal, divine and devilish.

But in cultural symbolism, there is a reason for this two-faced aspect.  Almost universally, snakes are typically feared or revered. They are the epitome of mystery.  The serpent has wrapped its tail around countless legends throughout human history.  Inevitably, there is a silver lining to a snake’s evil action.  Vice versa, there is a consequence to a serpent’s good deed.  Let’s break it down…

The Dark Side of Naga Meaning

To understand the dark side of naga meaning, we have to understand their behavior is not random.  If a serpent lashes out, there is almost always a cause.

Let’s take the tales of nagas poisoning people.  In almost all cases, these powerful serpents are not spewing venom for the fun of it.  Nope. More often than not, the recipient of naga poison committed some kind of crime or misdeed.  This scenario serves as a great moral in children’s fables.  It’s a great teaching method encouraging children to be good – or else the naga will unleash their deadly spit. Yikes!

Nagas have an obsession with glittery goodies like gems, gold and other treasure.  Woe be to anyone who came close to their hoard of sparkly collection of precious bits.  Naga’s were known to squeeze the bejeebers out of anyone who attempted to go near its treasure. Who can blame the serpent for that?  I’d be pretty cranky if someone tried to steal my vintage-mint-in-box Pee Wee Herman doll. lol.



naga meaning
The Naga, or serpent, has a long history in Hinduism

Okay, I confess, I’m an advocate of serpents.  Snakes, including nagas are often villainized.  It just seem unfair.  It’s true, most times serpents of legend have a reason to be nasty.  But I must say…sometimes a wicked naga is just plain wicked.  For whatever reason, naga’s are known to seduce an unsuspecting folks.  Once lured in, the naga struck, killing the poor being who crossed the serpent’s path.  Some naga’s are just bad eggs, I guess.

The Light Side of Naga Meaning

Now for the good stuff.  The symbolic meaning of serpents (and the naga) often revolves around renewal and regeneration.  In the case of Hindu naga lore, the serpent represents infinity and creation. This has to do with the snake’s ability to shed it’s skin. Out with the old, in with the new.  After shedding, the snake is shiny and reborn. This theme is seen in many legends in Indo-Asia.

Another redeeming quality of the naga is protection.  Extreme protection. As mentioned, you don’t mess with naga treasure.  Often myth depicts the naga  protecting booty not for themselves, but for the royalty of the land.  If you ever tour around Asia or India, take a look at the temples.  Odds are, you will find carvings of serpents wrapped around stairs and columns.  This reinforces the aspect of fierce protection the naga provides.

Nagas are also associated with water and the underworld in Hindu belief.  As such, they influence behavior of rainfall, rivers, and lakes. Not only is this vital in hot climates, it is essential for successful agriculture.  In this sense, the naga is a positive symbol of provision, generosity and fertility.

There is another Hindu legend that states the naga showed kindness to Buddha.  One day while Buddha was meditating, a torrential storm blew in, pummeling the Buddha with wind and rain.  The nagas saw this and came to the Buddha’s aid.  They used their hoods (similar to cobra hoods) like an umbrella to protect Buddha from the rain.  Then they wrapped their bodies around Buddha to keep him warm from the chilly wind.

Closing Thoughts on Naga Meaning

See, so the serpent naga is not all that bad.  I think the symbolic lesson here is this:  If something seems scary or intimidating, there might be a positive side too.  I’ll admit, snakes aren’t everybody’s favorite creature, but when we take a look at serpents through the eyes of different cultures – it gives us insight into new perspectives.

I hope you enjoyed this post on naga meaning.  If you enjoyed this article, please be sure to check out the links below for related information.  As always, thanks so much for reading.

Symbolic Meaning of Snakes

Snake Tattoo Meaning and Ideas

St. Patrick’s Day Symbols

st patricks day symbols

Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day Symbols





It’s been said that on March 17th, St. Patrick’s day, everybody is Irish.  That’s not too far off the mark.  At one point, Irish immigrants outnumbered any other nationality in the US. In fact, the Irish have been so influential in this country, that many Irish customs (and symbols) are embossed upon the American culture.

This Irish holiday is just as impressive with symbolic meaning. Firstly, St. Patrick was a pretty remarkable dude…and he wasn’t Irish either. He was born around Roman Britain, close to Scotland.  In a weird twist of fate, St. Patrick was captured by Irish raiders and made a slave in Ireland.  Ironic, eh? Yeah…the guy who is an Irish icon was kept a slave there from the time he was 16. After about seven years as a slave, St. Paddy was called by God to serve a higher purpose, and he ran away from his dour life of slavery.

He traveled Europe and got the education he lacked as a slave. Then God called St. Pat again, telling him it was time to do great things. So St. Patrick went back to Ireland to share his passion for Christianity. Talk about dynamic forgiveness! This is a guy captured by the Irish, yet he went back there as a missionary to talk about salvation.

St. Patrick didn’t have an easy time of it though.  He made some big social blunders.  On one occasion, Patrick lit a bonfire on what was then one of the most sacred Celtic celebrations (Beltane).

No big deal, right? Well, the high Celtic king, Laoghaire saw Pat’s fire and was enraged. Apparently, it’s not good etiquette to light a bonfire before the king lights his own first. Oopsie.

St. Patrick soothed over the hard feelings about the fire, started to make friends, and successfully shared his views about Christianity.

What I find very cool about St. Patrick is that he took a different tact than many missionaries.  He wasn’t about crushing and converting the people.  He actually meshed the Celtic/pagan beliefs in with the Christian philosophy.  So instead of obliterating Irish ancient beliefs, St. Patrick wove together the old and the new – forming a cohesion.

As he respected the old ways while honoring his own faith – I think St. Paddy would approve of this post on St. Patrick’s Day symbols.  Why? Because symbols, either ancient or new, reflect an era, a culture, a belief, etc. Check out these St. Patrick’s Day symbols…I think you’ll find they make March 17th a little more rich with meaning.



st. patricks day symbols

St. Patrick’s Day Symbols

Shillelagh: Okay, so it’s not the most sophisticated weapon, but certainly effective.  Back in Patrick’s day, there was a lot of warring for territory, and family feuds. The fighting Irish devised these clubs called shillelagh’s from oak trees as weapons. Often, a warrior would double fist their clubs, one club in one hand to deliver the damaging blow, and the other club for staving off attacks. So what makes this one of St. Patrick’s Day symbols? Over time and with the evolution of legend, the clubs turned into staffs or walking sticks.  They were considered to be a mark of wisdom and great power.  Check out any picture of St. Patrick, and you’ll see him with a staff – a mark of his esteemed position in the Irish culture.

Leprechaun: These are the wee ones in Irish lore. They are a group of fairies known as Luchorpan. The whole deal with their association with cobbling shoes points back to their name in Gaelic, which means ‘one shoemaker’.  Now, you’ve got to understand that in ancient cultures around the world, just about everything had a governing spirit (fairy, troll, goddess whatever).  There is a hierarchy of mythic beings who are in charge of certain functions in life. Leprechaun’s, apparently were the Jimmy Choo of shoes back in the day. The leprechaun is included in this list of St. Patrick Day Symbols as a nod of respect to St. Pat for keeping old traditions intact. Rather than eliminating beliefs in magical beings, St. Patrick allowed the people to acknowledge them side-by-side with the new religion.

Harp: Both a national symbol of Ireland, and St. Patrick, the harp won popularity with the Irish long ago.  This instrument was used in festivals, celebrations and just general family gatherings. Its music was said to put evil spirits to sleep, and insure peaceful dreams for children. The harp plays its way into Irish culture because it was custom for great tales and legends to be made into music.  These tales were often sung accompanied by the harp. Seeing as how St. Patrick is a living legend, it makes sense a few harp tunes were played in his honor. As a symbol of cultural heritage, St. Patrick and the harp go hand in hand.

Shamrock: This unlikely little plant set St. Patrick on the map.  It is THE symbol he is most famous for.  Why?  Because St. Pat was a clever guy.  He used the shamrock as a demonstration tool to explain the triple force behind Christianity (Father, Son, Holy Ghost).  Celts were already digging the scene of triple energy (triple gods, and goddesses) when Pat showed up, so a trinity was easy to grasp.  St. Patrick used the shamrock to show how each branch of the Christian faith stood on it’s own power, but all the leaves needed each other to live and grow.  He used the leaves to explain the individuality of each holy entity, while also explaining their dependence upon each sacred power.  Learn more about shamrock symbol meanings here.

In closing, I hope you enjoyed this brief article on St. Patrick’s day symbols and their meanings.  To be sure, there are many more icons associated with St. Patrick, as well as Ireland.  Don’t let your research stop here! Take some time to find out the symbolic meanings associated with this great time of year and the Irish culture.

If nothing else, you can impress your friends at the pub with your knowledge about Irish symbolic history!

As always, thank you for reading. And I hope your St. Patrick’s day (March 17th) turns out to be a frolicking good time.

Brightly,

Avia

If you liked this article, you might also enjoy…

Symbolic Meanings for the Month of March

Symbolic Shamrock Meaning

Symbolism of Celtic Trinity

Good Luck Symbols and Their Meanings