Category Archives: Symbolic Tips

Ants, Agony and Answers (Symbolic Lessons from Ants)

SymbolicMeaningOfAnts

Symbolic Lessons and Meaning of Ants


Any of you sweet peeps who have followed me over the years know I’m all about having a positive attitude.

But sometimes poop happens.  It just does, and it blows.

Well folks, these last six months have been replete with messy, sloppy hip-high poop for me.  I suspect many of you may be in the same quagmire.

So what’s a human to do?  What do we do in those moments where we’ve pulled almost every hair out of our heads, wrung our hands and rendered our garments?  Those times when everything seems so overwhelming and utterly futile?

We look at the secret symbolic life of ants.

Huh?  Yeah!

In the middle of family crisis, negotiating a complicated relocation of my home/business AND experiencing a devastating blow to one of my websites….I just felt fully crushed.

Actually, I felt like that little blonde girl in pigtails in the movie E.T.  You remember the scene.  She’s up to her eyeballs in frogs, and she’s clearly lost her mind with the madness of the frog stampede Elliot let loose in science lab.  Aaaarrrgh!

But in that moment of tears, wailing and agony….I looked at the dirt.  Whoa?  Yeah, it’s a good practice.  If everything is unstable – get in the dirt.  When you’re all topsy-turvy, dig your feet in the dirt.  Press your hands into the Mother Earth.  It’s a very grounding thing.  Very therapeutic. No joke.

You see where I’m going with this.  Yep.  In my effort to find some stability within the dirt – I encountered ants.  Lots of ’em!  I’m talking swarms!  And they weren’t very happy with me.  They stung the bejeezus out of me!  Ouchie!  :o

At first I was infuriated.  That pain just added salt to my emotional wounds.  But then I started thinking…..

Yeah, yeah, I can hear the nay-saying….”Avia…how could you possibly find a silver lining in being consumed by a bunch of bitey, bitchy fire ants?!?  C’mon!”

Easy.  Those ants were bad-a*s’s! They reminded me they are not to be fooled with.  They said:  “Hey!  This is our turf!  Don’t mess with us!”  That helped me realize my feelings of helplessness are an illusion.  We all have tools to fight back and defend ourselves – even in our weakest moments.  It might be our intellect.  Maybe it’s our faith.  Perhaps we find strength in family or community.  When the going gets tough, take a bite back with what makes you feel strong and confident.

Those cranky ants taught me more than that.  After I tended to my ant bites, I went back to that spot in the dirt.  I’d messed up their home (total accident – sorry babies!).  Within 20 minutes, those ants had already reconstructed their mound.  Impressive.  That’s a lesson.  It speaks to us about teamwork.  It talks about rebuilding with ferocious determination.  That was a big lesson of which I needed reminding.

What’s more….did you know ants can lift THREE TIMES their own weight?  Yeppers.  Again – very impressive.  This smacks of big potential in the most unlikely tiny packages.  When we feel ineffectual or weak – I think we should remember what teeny weeny ants can do.  Often it’s the ‘dark horse’ that wins the race.  It’s hard to imagine the extraordinary feats of physics ants pull off – but they do – because they ban together, and they never give up.

And speaking of banning together….ants are a remarkable demonstration of teamwork and community.  If you watch them, you get the sense they work as a whole.  And they do.  They can’t build a village with a single member.  Nope.  They communicate and work together to meet their goals.  Big juju in that lesson.  At least for me.

Well, that’s my ant-insight.  I hope it brought you insight too.  Hopefully the next time you come across the deceptively small ant – you’ll realize they’re actually quite tremendous in strength, resources, defense and unity.

As always, thanks for indulging me – and thanks for reading!

May all your ant antics be inspiring!

Avia

More Articles of Interest:

Symbolic Meaning of Ants in Dreams

Symbolic Meaning of Insects

Crackers, Croakers, Crazy. Oh My!

MovingToadOmens

In the name of all things precious and divine, I swear I’ve finally lost my mind.  Seriously.  I’m writing this post in my skivvies because I can’t find my pants.  Honest Abe.

Why?  It might have something to do with whom I lovingly refer to as my “Croaker in the Crack.”  I call him “Crackers” for short.

Now before it becomes obvious that I’m certifiably crazy, let me explain.  You see, Crackers is a toad I made friends with at this house I’ve been renting (and am currently moving from).

Yep.  I’m moving.  AGAIN!  This is the 4th move in less than two years.  All this commotion is partly due to insanity, but necessity has played a big part too.  If you want to read my thoughts about the symbolic meaning of moving – click here.

So what’s this got to do with my Croaker in the Crack?  Well, as with all household moves, things get chaotic.  It’s nuts enough I can’t find my pants, or my toothbrush, or my coffee mug…because…guess what, Lil’ Miss Efficient has packed (apparently) EVERYTHING! Ugh.  But what dove me into the nut mix completely was Crackers the Toad.

The little guy comes out every night to serenade me.  He pokes his head out from a little crack in the back porch.  Like clockwork…POP! Hello!  Cutest little fella!

Well, I’m sleepless, and whacked out, and bonkers with moving on my mind.  So I wake up (as usual) at 3:00 a.m. this morning.  I stagger out the back door to let the dogs out.  To my surprise, I see Crackers!  But he’s not on the back porch.  He’s in my house!!!

This normally isn’t a big deal.  I’ve got no qualms or squeamishness when it comes to picking up toadies (and still put them in my pocket like I did when I was a kid).  But Crackers is a pistol!  That toad is the wiliest, slipperiest baby!  It took me forever to catch that sucker!

Finally captured and placed safely back in his crack outside, I had to think about the symbolism of all this.  You know me.  Ain’t nothing going on without a symbolic meaning!  ;)

Did you know in China, frogs and toads are good luck symbols?  Yep.  And, they’re specifically lucky in terms of safe travel.  That really speaks to me – especially during this current move and transition.

In my (somewhat wacky) mind, Crackers showed up inside the house to give me a blessing.  This little guy is a reminder that no matter the craziness of moving, I’ve gotten my sign that this is the right move to make.

So even though Crackers kept me up for hours chasing him around the house (without pants, no less), I’m happy for the shenanigans.  It’s just another sign the Universe is using to let me know everything is going to be okay.

Oh, and Crackers might also be a lesson that sometimes chaos is OK too.  Going crazy sometimes is OK too.

Who knew, my little Croaker in the Crack could pack such a whallup in symbolism and life-lessons!?

What’s the take-away point for you?  Hmmm.  Could be stuff like:

  • Creep out of your crack.  Poke your head out of your hole and explore!
  • Hop out of the conventional.  Move in directions you might not normally take.
  • Get cracking! Crack the codes the Universe is sending you ALL the time! Even when it seems all hell has broken loose, I assure you it hasn’t.  I can also assure you the Divine is always sending you vital signs and tons of inspiration.

In short, be still.  Get calm.  Relax.  Then catch that hoppy bit of hope that’s landed in your house you call life.  Just like I did with Crackers.  Sometimes the craziest moments hold the most sane insight (even without pants on, lol).

Toady blessings to you!

Avia

If you liked this post, you might also like:

Symbolic Meaning of Moving (yikes!)

Symbolic Meaning of Toads and Frogs (ribbit!)

Croaky Toad Messages (greenie got game!)

 

 

Why Do We Call It A Blue Moon?

WhyDoWeCallItABlueMoon2Why Do We Call It A ‘Blue Moon’?
Symbolic Meaning of Blue Moons


At the time of this writing a blue moon is approaching tonight, May 21, 2016.  What’s up with that?  What’s does the blue moon mean?  Plenty.

Let’s start by explaining what a blue moon is.  Basically, there are normally three moons in a season.  Every couple years an extra moon crops up.  Hence the cliché “once in a blue moon” akin to describing a rare event.

Pretty simple explanation, right?  But what’s up with the colorful moniker? Why do we call it a blue moon?  Why not “weird extra moon”?

I mean, blue moons aren’t even blue all the time They can be any color.  The hue of this moon comes into play as an effort to identify an anomaly.  Why? I’ll explain.

As par with all assignments in symbolism – it’s hard to pinpoint an exact origin.  The term “blue moon” crops up in lots of places during different eras.

It’s widely agreed blue moon is a term of the Old Ways.  It started with those savvy country folk who lived and died by the rule of Nature.  In ancient Gaelic, the word blue identified the color, but it also had dodgy connotations.  In Gaelic slang, the word blue was used to express indecency or inappropriateness. In old French, blue signified a low mood.  Hence the phrase “I’m feeling blue”.

If we pull on this blue thread, we might wonder why dub an extra oddball moon as a bad thing?  Pretty simple answer.  Country folk of the Old Ways were profoundly connected to the earth.  When I say they lived and died by the rule of Nature, that is oh-so-true.  From crops to cows, cures to ceremony – earth and sky was the source of it all.  So what’s the blue moon connection?

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An extra moon in a growing season can do some really wonky things to everything.  It affects human behavior, animal behavior, and it certainly influences growth of crops/plant-life.  Full moons pack powerful punches once a month.  But twice a month – whoa Nellie!!  Stand back for a walloping effect.  Ergo, this renegade extra moon became known as the ‘indecent moon’ or ‘inappropriate moon’.  Basically it was an unwanted moon because to ancient country folk, it wreaked unpredictable results in life.

So that’s the winding road to answer the question “why do we call it a blue moon?”  But I can’t leave it at that.  I have this compulsion to turn frowns upside down.  What if we flip this bad blue moon rap into a better perspective?

We can look to the same ancient folklore that gave the blue moon its indecent proposal from the beginning.  The Old Ways tell of amazing results when we appeal to the power of the blue moon.  Whoa?  Yeah! Instead of getting freaked out over the unknown influence of this moon – we can harness its power – purposefully and profoundly.

This rare’ish lunar event is a perfect time to get serious about our affirmations.  When we solidify our intentions during a blue moon, this moon blesses it in a big way.  Think of it like sowing super-sonic powerful seeds in our lives.  Then consider the blue moon adding magic lunar juju to our seeds – insuring the likelihood of successful sprouting of our dreams.

In short: Offer up your dreams and expectations for the future to this blue moon.  Connect with Dame Bleue Lune on a personal level.  Envision this dynamic, cerulean Lady Luna as a giver of second chances and big gifts in your life.

Blue moons have historically proven themselves to be catalysts for mind-blowing life-events.  Don’t miss the chance to utilize this thin slice of night life.  It’s time to boogie in the moon light and dare to dream for your best future.

Interestingly, the Old Ways document a domino effect with this action.  If you engage the blue moon to aid you in your future manifestations, it will set factors in motion that will last until the next blue moon – which is about three years in the future.  Considering this is a time of impressive influence, energy and potential – it behooves us to choose our wishes for the future wisely.

I hope this post on “Why do we call it a blue moon?” was illuminating.  At very least, I’d like to think this post inspires you to wander outside and simply appreciate the bountiful beauty of this blue moon (even though it likely won’t be blue).  If you do go lunar-watching, do me a favor.  Just give thanks.  Thanks for the little things, big things, and everything in between.  But especially give gratitude for this glorious universe in which we live.

As always, my thanks to YOU for reading!

Bright lunar love,

Avia

Click the links below for more symbolic meaning of moons…

Symbolic Moon Facts and Meanings

Moon Signs and Moon Meanings

Moon Meditation

Native American Full Moon Names

 

 

 

 

Turning Over a New Leaf. It’s Symbolic.

TurningOverANewLeaf

Turning Over a New Leaf.  It’s Symbolic.

We’ve all heard the old cliché, “Turning over a new leaf.”  But what does it mean?

General consensus tells us the phrase means something like turning away from one behavior in favor of a new or better one.  Like changing a habit, or reforming our lifestyle.

Where did this phrase come from?  In truth, I don’t really know.  I’m more interested in the correlation between leaf-behavior in Nature and how we adopt this cliché in our lives.

To explain, many types of trees can detect changes in their environment.  They sense a shift in weather before it happens.  It’s as if they predict the weather.  Trees adjust to these changes to prepare themselves for pending change.  For example, deciduous trees like maples and poplars turn their leaves as a protective measure before a storm hits.

I like this a lot.  It’s an illustration.  An example of savvy sense and mature action.  How so?

Well, instead of telling ourselves: “I’m turning over a new leaf.”  Maybe trees offer a sophisticated twist to this affirmation.  I mean…what prompted us to make that statement to begin with?  Upon thoughtful introspection, perhaps we detect a shift in our environment.  Perhaps our intuition is telling us to prepare ourselves for future events – just like trees prepare for change.

Rather than flippantly tossing about the cliché – maybe we can embrace the idea that a deeper presence within and around us is beckoning us to shift our position.  Maybe a powerful, sentient energy sees a positive purpose for making a motion for our betterment – for our safety – for our future.

Feeling a shift in the wind?  Sensing something coming your way?  Consider opening yourself to the gift all biological beings have – the gift of perception.  Everything in Nature is hard-wired with predictive ability….including us humans.  Often, our awareness is crammed with distractions.  But stoic, patient, wise trees don’t let distractions jam the signals they receive from Nature.  Nope.  They open themselves to the subtle signals Nature impresses upon them.

Be like a tree.  Experience environment on a full-body, full-spirit scale.  Know you have Nature’s gift of knowing to turn your leaves whichever way necessary to insure your best life experience.

Just thinking.

Happy leaf-turning :)

Avia

Go Green. Symbolically green, that is…with more links to meanings in Nature:

Symbolism in Nature

Symbolism of Trees

Symbolic Earth Meditation

 

 

Reading Tea Leaves

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Tasseography: The Art of Reading Tea Leaves

Tasseography is the practice of reading tea leaves with a goal to derive deeper meanings.  These meanings could be of a fortune-telling nature, but I’m more inclined to read the leaves for the purpose of broadening perspective or confirming intuition.

Tasseography was initiated and mastered by the Chinese who have held a deep reverence for tea and its life-affirming qualities for centuries.  Coffee grounds and wine remnants can also be interpreted, and these practices also fall under the heading of tasseography.

This article offers a few tips on reading tea leaves as was passed on to me by one of my teachers.

Choosing a Tea:

Choose a tea of choice.  Black, green, herbal – it makes no difference.  Whichever you prefer.  Choose a loose tea for optimal results (I love oolong, rolled or cut – makes great designs in the cup).  If you don’t have loose tea, you can cut open a bagged tea.

Brewing the Tea:

Put your loose tea in a small teapot.  Fill the pot with water and put to a boil.  Swirl your teapot a bit (think of your question as you do so) to kick up the loose tea and then pour out the tea in your cup being careful not to burn yourself.  Note: Use a teacup with a handle.

Settling the Sediment:

1)  Enjoy drinking your tea.  As you do so, think about a question you want clarification on.

2)  When you are almost done, swirl the last little bit of liquid and tea remnants three times:  Clockwise if you need clarity on future events, counterclockwise if you need clarification on past events.

3)  As you are swirling think upon the issue/question  you are seeking guidance about.

4)  Place your teacup rim-down on the saucer to empty out the last bit of liquid remaining.

The sediment left in your cup is what you will read.

Reading the Tea Leaves:

The Chinese have a whole dictionary of tea-leaf-shapes and meanings.  These reference guides are filled with hundreds of potential symbols that may be interpreted from remnant tea leaves.  You can certainly use reference books (there are several books on the market, or you could go to your library).  However, my teacher encouraged the use of self-determination and imagination to interpret leaves.

There are a few ground rules however.  Your teacup will serve as a guide in your tea leaf interpretation.  Specifically, the position of the handle on your teacup in relation to the tea leaves will help you determine the timing of your oracle (past or future).  The cup will also help to determine if your oracle is referencing you, or other people – consciousness or unconsciousness.

Here are some diagrams to illustrate what I’m talking about:

ReadingTeaLeaves2

When you are contemplating the arrangement of tea leaves, and they are mostly flowing to the left half of the teacup (according to the left-pointing handle) then you are dealing with past issues.

Alternatively, if most of your leaves are arranged on the right half of the cup (according to the handle), then you are dealing with the future.
How you turn the cup handle will be determined by your intuition.  You will see, during the practice of tasseography, the leaves will convene naturally to make a coherent design.  That design will look differently according to how you turn the cup.

The tea leaf design will look more coherent and take on a real shape depending upon which direction you’re turning the cup.

The last illustration on this page will explain this more fully.
In the same way, you can determine if the tea leaves are offering an oracle about yourself or about others.

ReadingTeaLeaves3

Likewise, your leaves can tell you if your question/issue is rooted in your conscious awareness, or buried in  your subconscious.

So how do we read the actual leaves? 

Turn your cup around to get the best view of your tea leaves.  You will notice that turned in different directions, there will be no discernable feature.  Yet turn the cup in a different direction, and you may be able to make out a clear figure.

Take this image (left) for example.  When I turned the cup clockwise (with the handle facing left), my intuition could not make out any definitions.

ReadingTeaLeaves4

However, when I turned the cup the other way (handle facing east/right) then I could clearly see a rabbit leaping about.

Can you see the rabbit?

You will have to move the cup (not the remnants, that cheating) around and your intuition will tell you which position offers the clearest tea-leaf-symbol.

Once you define a specific symbol in your leaves, allow your intuition to provide the answers.  My tea leaves form a rabbit, so I ask my intuition “What does the rabbit mean to me? How does it relate to my life?”

Rabbits, in my training symbolize fertility.  And, as I’m not having babies any time soon, that means my future is filled with a different kind of fertility.  I could interpret this as: “New creative ideas will be born in my future.”

Keep it simple.  Let your intuitive vision fall on very simple symbols. Then allow your basic reasoning skills to understand what that symbol means to you, and how it applies to your life experience.

And don’t forget the most important rule: Have fun and enjoy yourself during the process.

I hope you have enjoyed these thoughts on tasseography as a means for clarification.

Wishing you happiness while reading tea leaves,

Avia

Rain, Rain Go Away. Folk Predictions of Rain and Storms


Folk Predictions of Rain and Storms

It’s that time of year again. Spring is pushing into our lives, stomping her foot down on Winter.

Spring can be a crazy-unpredictable time. It has to do with the transitional nature of the season. Winter and Summer tend to take command of their time in the year. Spring and Autumn, however, are all about shifts and changes. For more symbolic seasonal insights click here.

So Spring is springing (in the Northern hemisphere). That means rain. It can also mean big honking storms.

Now, I’m a huge fan of rain. It’s symbolic of neat stuff like:

  • Healing
  • Renewal
  • Cleansing
  • Emotional Rebirth
  • Gifts from the Heavens

All good things, right? Indeed, rain is a super-keen meteorological event. Without it, we’d all be in a world of hurt. From replenishing vital water tables, to insuring food on our tables – we owe a lot of appreciation to the rain spirits.

But sometimes Mother Nature can go bonkers. Whatever the reason, sometimes Madame Nature takes those life-giving raindrops and transforms them into bullets of destruction in the form of a storm. You’ve heard it said “Into every life some rain must fall”. Well, same is true with storms. Both literal and metaphorical storms happen. To all of us.

So what? Nothing we can do about it, right? Wellll, I wouldn’t be so committed to that view.

I grew up with a friend whose mother was a walking encyclopedia of folk wisdom and medicine. She had hundreds of ways of predicting the weather. She also had equal amount of ways in thwarting bad weather.

Did her methods for shooing away storms work? I can’t say for sure. But I do know her prediction skills were better than the weatherman on TV!

Whether you believe in folk methods for weather prediction and prevention or not – sometimes it’s fun to entertain the ideas.

The following are some old folk tips on predicting rain, as well as ways to dissuade storms ruining your Sunday picnic.

Folk Ways to Predict Rain and Storms

Turning over a new leaf:
When leaves begin to turn over, it’s often a sign of upcoming rain or storms. I’ve written about this phenomenon on a symbolic level here: Turning Over a New Leaf – It’s Symbolic.

Pitter pat, check out the cat:
When cats rub behind their ears during a cat-bath, rain is on its way.

Down came the rain and washed the spider out:
Spiders are predictors of many things in folk lore. Spiders ducking for cover and seeking shelter is a sign of rain or storms.

Oh! My achy breaky bones!:
Perhaps the very best barometer of rains a’coming is aching bodies. I know it certainly works for me. So pay attention to those cranky corns on your feet, creaky bones and stiff joints – it could mean impending rain storms.

Folk Ways to Prevent Storms

Pass the salt, please:
Sprinkling salt on a ceremonial fire is thought to thwart torrential storms in the Spring.

X marks the spot:
Appalachian lore says marking an X on windows with your right index finger protects the home from storm damage.

More bark than bite:
Find a piece of bark from a tree that’s been hit by lightning. Folk tales say keeping this tree bark will protect you from lightning and ill effects of a bad storm.

Get stoned:
No. Not like that! Striking two stones together sends a message to the thunder and storm spirits. One stone must be black, the other white. If you’re about to be caught in a storm outside, strike these two stones together until you are safely under cover – it’s said to protect you from storm damage.


All superstitions aside, deluges of rain and epic storms are nothing to snicker at. It’s up to you whether you want to employ any of these folk tactics to predict or avoid weather threats. Admittedly, I find myself doing some of these things out of habit. I remember my old friend employing her folk remedies and predictions – and I guess they rubbed off on me over time.

Belief is a big ingredient in any method of honoring rain and storms. Symbolism certainly plays its part too. While the folk ways offer nostalgia, I still find the best tact is a path of respect. For example, tap into the symbolic meaning of rain. Once we’re familiar with the deeper meaning of rain and storms, we tend to connect with it. We may even auger a sense of honor and respect for it. I certainly do. In that same vein, I practice a simple ceremony. Just a closing of the eyes and uttering words of honor and gratitude for Mother Nature and the nourishment she provides. I also pay respect to Her power in the form of storms. All that said, I ask for the very best outcome for all involved. Then I sprinkle salt on the fire, X my windows and put Ben-Gay on my poor knees. LOL!

I hope you found this post on folk predictions of rain enjoyable. Maybe it will come in handy. Maybe not. Either way, I’d like to think you came away with a little laugh and a renewed respect for Mother Nature.

As always, thanks for reading!

Mightily Brightly,

Avia

If you liked this post, be sure to check out related articles here: