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					       Archetypes and
         Symbolism
                                  ARCHETYPES IN LITERATURE
An archetype is a symbol, story, pattern, or character type that recurs frequently in literature and
evokes strong, often unconscious, associations in the reader. For example, the wicked witch and the
enchanted prince are character types widely dispersed through folk tales and literature. The story of
a hero who undertakes a dangerous quest, Odysseus in The Odyssey, is a recurrent story pattern.

Situation Archetypes
 The Quest — This motif describes the search for someone or some talisman which, when found
    and brought back, will restore fertility to a wasted land, the desolation of which is mirrored by a
    leader's illness and disability. (The Lion King. Idylls of the King)

 The Task - To save the kingdom, the win the fair lady, to identify himself so that he may
   reassume his rightful position, the hero must perform some nearly superhuman deed. This is NOT
   the same as the quest; it is a function of the ultimate goal. (Arthur pulls Excalibur from the stone,
   Grendel is slain by Beowulf)

 The Journey - The journey sends the hero in search for some truth or information necessary to
   restore fertility to the kingdom. Usually the hero descends into a real or psychological hell and is
   forced to discover the blackest truths, quite often concerning his faults. Once the hero is at this
   lowest point, he must accept personal responsibility to return to the world of the living. A second
   use of this pattern is the depiction of a limited number of travelers on a sea voyage, bus ride, or
   any other trip for the purpose of isolating them and using them as microcosm of society. (The
   Canterbury Tales. The Odyssey).

 The Initiation - This rite usually takes the form of an initiation into adult life. The adolescent
   comes into his/her maturity with new awareness and problems, along with new hope for the
   community. This awakening is often the climax of the story. (Huckleberry Finn. King Arthur).

 The Fall - This archetype describes a descent from a higher to a lower state of being. The
   experience involves a defilement and/or loss of innocence and bliss. The fall is often
   accompanied by expulsion from a kind of paradise as penalty for disobedience and moral
   transgression. (Adam and Eve, Lancelot and Guinevere).
 Death and Rebirth - The most common of all situational archetypes, this motif grows out of the
   parallel between the cycle of nature and the cycle of life. Thus, morning and springtime represent
   birth, youth, or rebirth, while evening and winter suggest old age or death.

 Nature vs. Mechanistic World - Nature is good, while technology and society are often evil /Mad
   Max, The Terminator

 The Battle between Good and Evil - Obviously the battle between two primal forces; Mankind
   shows eternal optimism in the continual portrayal of good triumphing over evil despite great odds.
   (Any western, Satan and God in Paradise Lost).


 The Unhealable Wound - This wound is either physical or psychological and cannot be healed
   fully. This wound also indicates a loss of innocence. These wounds always ache and often drive
   the sufferer to desperate measures. (Lancelot's madness, Scar's envy)

 The Ritual — The actual ceremonies the initiate experiences that will mark his rite of passage into
   another state. The importance of ritual rites cannot be over stressed as they provide a clear
   signpost for the character's role in society as well as our own position in the world. (Weddings,
   baptisms, coronation.

 The Magic Weapon — This symbolizes the extraordinary quality of the hero because no one else
   can wield the weapon or use it to its full potential. (Excalibur, Odysseus's bow, Thor's banner)

Symbolic Archetypes
 Light vs. Darkness - Light usually suggests hope, renewal, or intellectual illumination. Darkness
  implies the unknown, ignorance, despair, or evil.

 Water vs. Desert - Because water is necessary to life and growth, it commonly appears as a
   birth or rebirth symbol. Water is used in baptismal services, which solemnizes spiritual births.
   Similarly, the appearance of rain in a work of literature can suggest a character's spiritual birth.
   Desert, in turn, implies the death of a soul and spirituality. (The sea and river images in The
   Odyssey.)

 Heaven vs. Hell - Man has traditionally associated parts of the universe not accessible to him
   with the dwelling places of the primordial forces that govern his world. The skies and
   mountaintops house his gods; the bowels of the earth contain the diabolic forces that inhabit the
   universe. (Dante's Inferno. The Divine Comedy)

 Innate Wisdom vs. Educated Stupidity - Some characters exhibit wisdom and understanding
   at situations instinctively as opposed to those supposedly in charge. Loyal retainers often exhibit
   this wisdom when they accompany the hero on the journey. (Animals, Sam in The Lord of the
   Rings).

 Haven vs. Wilderness - Places of safety contrast sharply against the dangerous wilderness.
   Heroes are often sheltered for a time to regain health and resources. (The Batcave, Camelot).

 Supernatural Intervention — The gods intervene on the side of the hero and sometimes against
   him. (The Bible. The Odyssey)
 Fire vs. Ice - Fire represents knowledge, light, life, and rebirth, while ice represents ignorance,
   darkness, sterility, and death. (Dante's Inferno, the phoenix).



Character Archetypes
 The Hero - This archetype is so well-defined that the life of the protagonist can be clearly
   divided into a series of well-marked adventures which strongly suggest a ritualistic pattern.
   Traditionally, the herd's mother is a virgin, the circumstances of this conception are unusual, and,
   at birth, some attempt is made to kill him. He is, however, spirited away and reared by foster
   parents. We know almost nothing of his childhood, but, upon reaching manhood, he returns to
   his future kingdom. After a victory over the king or a wild beast, he marries a princess, becomes
   king, reigns uneventfully, but later loses favor with the gods. He is then driven from the city after
   which he meets a mysterious death, often at the top of a hill. His body is not buried, but
   nevertheless, he has one or more holy sepulchers. Characters who exemplify this archetype to a
   greater or lesser extent are Oedipus, Jason, Dionysus, Joseph, Moses, Jesus, Arthur, Robin
   Hood, and Beowulf.

 The Young Man from the Provinces - This hero is spirited away as a young man and raised by
   strangers. He later returns to his home and heritage where he is a stranger who can see new
   problems and new solutions. (Tarzan, Arthur, Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz).

 The Initiates - These are young heroes or heroines who, prior to their quest, must endure some
   training and ceremony. They are usually innocent and often wear white. (Daniel from The Karate
   Kid. Luke Skywalker)

 Mentors — These individuals serve as teachers or counselors to the initiates. Sometimes they
   work as role models and often serve as a father or mother figure.(Merlin, Raffiki)

 Hunting Group of Companions - Loyal companions willing to face any number of perils in order
   to-be together. (Robin Hood and his Merry Men, The Knights of the Round Table).

 Loyal Retainers — These individuals are somewhat like servants who are heroic themselves.
   Their duty is to protect the hero and reflect the nobility of the hero. (Sam in The Lord of the Flies.
   Watson to Sherlock Holmes).

 Friendly Beast - This character shows nature on the side of the hero. (Lassie, Toto, Trigger).

 The Devil Figure — Evil incarnate, this character offers worldly goods, fame, or knowledge to the
   protagonist in exchange for possession of the soul. (Satan, Lucifer, Hitler).

 The Evil Figure with the Ultimate Good Heart ~ A redeemable devil figure saved by the nobility
   or love of the hero. (Green Knight, Scrooge).

 The Scapegoat - An animal or more usually a human whose death in a public ceremony
   expiates some taint or sin that has been visited upon the community. Their death often makes
   them a more powerful force in the society than when they lived. (Oedipus, Jews in the Holocaust)

 The Outcast — A figure who is banished from a social group for some crime {real or imagined)
   against his fellow man. The outcast is usually destined to become a wanderer from place to
   place, (cowboys, Cain, Timone and Pumba).
 The Creature of Nightmare — A monster usually summoned from the deepest, darkest part of
   the human psyche to threaten the desecration of the human body. (Werewolves, vampires,
   Frankenstein).

 The Woman Figure
   o   The Earth Mother - Symbolic of fruition, abundance, and fertility, this character traditionally
       offers spiritual and emotional nourishment to those with whom she comes in contact. She is
       often depicted in earth colors and has large breasts    and hips, symbolic of her childbearing
       capabilities. (Mother Nature, Mammy in Gone with the Wind).

   o   The Temptress - Characterized by her beauty, this woman is one to whom the protagonist is
       physically attracted and who ultimately brings about his downfall. (Delilah, Cleopatra).

   o   The Platonic Ideal — This woman is a source of inspiration and a spiritual ideal, for whom the
       protagonist or author has an intellectual rather than a physical attraction. (Dante's Beatrice,
       Petrarch's Laura).

   o   The Unfaithful Wife — A woman married to a man who she sees as dull or distant and is
       attracted to a more virile or interesting man. (Madame Bovary, Anna Karenina).

   o   The Damsel in Distress — The vulnerable woman who must be rescued by the hero, she
       often is used as a trap to ensnare the unsuspecting hero. (Guinevere, Snow White, Sleeping
       Beauty).

   o   The Star-Crossed Lovers - These two characters are engaged in a love affair that is fated
       to end tragically for one or both of them due to the disapproval of society, family, friends, or
       some tragic situation. (Romeo and Juliet, the Titanic lovers).
                                       Archetypes and Symbols
                                                 A
   Acorns hold significance as a Scandinavian and Celtic symbol for life, fertility, and immortality. When it is
    carried on the person, it can often preserve youthfulness and acts as the symbol for strength. The acorn is
    also the seed of the oak tree.
   In sea-faring nations, the anchor is a symbol of good luck, of safety, and of security, and thus of trust and
    confidence.
   Angels are a manifestation of the traditional belief that there are spiritual creatures superior to man. They
    are the messengers of God, liaisons between heaven and Earth, and enlightenment. Angelic symbols
    include flaming swords, trumpets, scepters, musical instruments, lilies.
   Often, the use of animal imagery seeks to depict generally negative qualities and instincts relevant to human
    nature; for example, killing a serpent signifies a taming of instincts. Animals reflect the basic instincts that
    motivate human behavior, such as reproduction and self-preservation. They stand for the non-human
    psyche, the world of inhuman instincts, and the unconscious areas of the mind. They are often included to
    depict the urges which man must overcome in order to enter the realm of spirituality. Animal symbol varies
    according to its position -- a tamed animal can represent the reverse of the very same animal in a wild
    environment. There is a hierarchy among animals ranging from the insect/reptile to the mammal, and often a
    victory by higher animal over a lower one is thought of as victory for higher life over lower instincts (Lion over
    Bull shows victory of day over night). Aquatic animals are associated with water, reptiles with earth, birds
    with air and mammals with fire. Almost all symbols of animals can be related to three main ideas: the animal
    as a mount or mode of transportation, as an object of sacrifice, and as an inferior form of life.
   The ant is a symbol of diligence and industriousness. In Indian myth, however, they show the fragility of all
    living creatures. Often the ant is associated with prudence and forethought, because even though they are
    not strong, they gather food for winter. The multiplicity surrounding ants makes it unfavorably symbolic,
    sometimes compared with swarming humanity, and a sudden great increase in ants can spell war.
   The apple is a complex symbol. It can mean love, knowledge, wisdom, joy, death, and/or luxury. The apple
    of the Garden of Eden is the symbol of temptation and of original sin. In secular terms, the apple functions as
    a symbol for the cosmos or totality, due to its nearly perfect spherical shape.
   The apron is closely associated with work and craftsmanship; it also separates the upper and lower parts of
    the body, thus distinguishing the diverse energies related to those regions.
   The arch can be construed as the vault of the sky. Various cultures link the arch to victory; Passing through
    an arch is the symbolic act of rebirth, of leaving the old behind and entering the new. They often mark
    access into holy places. Adopted by the Muslims as an emblem of faith, it also has a link to heaven,
    sanctuary and a secret place.
   Upraised, the arms represent prayer or surrender. They also symbolize authority and power; In Egypt, they
    stand for general activity, from which can be derived working, offering, protecting, donating, etc.
   The arrow evokes images notions of piercing, which relates to the arrows of Cupid. The sharp ones of gold
    represent love, and the blunt ones of lead represent the dispelling of love. It is also associated with the rays
    of the sun and with hunting. As the weapon of Apollo, it signifies the light of supreme power. It is often paired
    with the heart, and, when it pierces through, it is thought of as a symbol of union. The arrow has many other
    combinations: arrow with cross (affliction), horseshoe (male/female), fire (Christ).
   The axe is one of the oldest tools developed by humans; since the Neolithic age, it has been a symbol of
    battle and work. All ancient traditions associate the axe with lightning, water, and fertility, and attribute to it
    the power of making or stopping rain. The twin-bladed axe is often associated with the Hindu thunderbolt, so
    it is a symbol of celestial illumination. Related to the ox because of its shape, it can be a general talisman of
    strength
                                                          B
   The ball can represent the sun or the moon, each of which is a ball that moves through the sky. The
    spherical aspect of a ball can also represent the celestial body, perfection, and eternity. Ball games are
    related to child sacrifice.



   The bat has qualities of both the bird and the mouse, rendering this animal a symbol of male/female; it also
    has strong associations with darkness and obscurity, as a creature of the night. In Christian terms, the bat is
    viewed as the bird of the devil. Although harmless, their close association with the blood-sucking vampire
    has given bats a terrifying connotation; they are a highly prevalent symbol in Western literature. The bat has
    a high relation to black magic and witchcraft because it is visible at the critical period when day turns to night;
    therefore, it can pose as a symbol for terror, misfortune and even death.
   The beard is a symbol of manhood, virility, and sovereignty. It is wisdom, a mark of the knowledge of the
    elders and is often the mark of male dignity. Hence, a bearded woman is often a witch. In the Old Testament,
    the beard can only be cut as a form of penance, mourning, punishment or putting someone to shame. It is
    also a sign of living, as Christ has a beard on earth and is clean-shaven after his death.
   Bells are commonly representative of joy and freedom, as with the American Liberty Bell. The shape of the
    bell is closely related to the vault of heaven. A bell's pendulous motion can represent the extremes of good
    and evil, death and immortality. They are also integral to rituals, and they are a widespread mechanism for
    summoning. Their sounds are symbols of creative power but can also be a call to arms.
   In most traditions, birds have a predominantly positive connotation. "Birds symbolize the power that helps
    people to speak reflectively and leads them to think out many things in advance before they take action. Just
    as birds are lifted up into the air by their feathers and can remain wherever they wish, the soul in the body is
    elevated by thought and spreads its wings everywhere." They represent the human desire to escape gravity,
    to reach the level of the angel. The bird is often the disembodied human soul, free of its physical
    constrictions. In Egypt, birds with human heads are dominant characters and they are seen leaving the
    mouths of the dying. Birds are also representative of freedom from materialism and may also stand for the
    growth of a lover. When connected with the tree, the bird shares something of the Phoenix. Birds are natural
    enemies with the serpent and the tortoise (haste versus slowness). Flocks of birds may be negative.
   Blindness symbolizes a refusal to see reality or may instead refer to a prophetic inner vision; it could mean
    ignorance, darkness, error or impartiality.
   Blood globally represents life itself as the element of divine life that functions within the human body. It is
    repeatedly referred to as having magic powers and as the only food for the supernatural beings and is also
    associated with "a variety of non-rational notions, including blood brotherhood, blood vengeance, blood
    baptism. Since it corresponds so readily with the color red, it represents the end of a series which begins
    with sunlight (yellow) and follows intermediately with vegetable life (green). Blood is also closely tied with
    passion but also with death, war, sacrifice (specifically sheep, hog, bull and man) and the warding off of
    malicious powers. In Hitler's vocabulary, blood meant "race," heritage, genetic information.
   The boat represents a journey, crossing, adventure, and exploration. It is also the femininity and "sheltering
    aspect of the Great Mother.” The boat is referenced in literature as the cradle rediscovered (the mother's
    womb). Crossing the sea can be viewed as being symbolic of making the journey across life; therefore, a
    boat can be seen as that which enables us to make such a journey, whether it is a passage in faith,
    education, desire, curiosity, or any other such motivation.
   Bones are the last earthly traces of the dead and seem to last forever; bones symbolize the indestructible
    life, yet they also may represent mortality and the transitory. Flesh and bones can symbolize the earth. In
    general speech, bones can connote lack of flattery or the truth.
   The book is the material picture of knowledge and wisdom. It contains the central doctrine of nearly every
    existing religion; in Holy Scriptures, it contains the Word, the divine message. It is the container of intellect;
    open books depict the book of life, learning, and the spirit of wisdom. It is truth and mercy. A closed book is
    in the hands of God, Divine Mystery.
   The bottle is a womb symbol, as it embodies the principles of containing and enclosure. Because of its
    functional analogy with the ark and the boat, it can be a symbol of salvation. A smashed bottle can represent
    rage as well as pending punishment.
   The bridge is inherently symbolic of communication and union, whether it is between heaven and earth or
    two distinct realms. For this reason it can be seen as the connection between God and man. It may be the
    passage to reality or merely a symbol for travel and crossing. In dreams, a bridge symbolizes the passage
    from one state to another, higher one, like an ascension; it is the end of one cycle and the beginning of
    another. In many cultures it is the link between what can be perceived and what is beyond perception, or at
    least a change or desire for change. It can be a test to see who is brave (who will cross the bridge).
   In its metamorphosis from the common, colorless caterpillar to the exquisite winged creature of delicate
    beauty, the butterfly has become a metaphor for transformation and hope; across cultures, it has become a
    symbol for rebirth and resurrection, for the triumph of the spirit and the soul over the physical prison, the
    material world. Among the ancients, it is an emblem of the soul and of unconscious attraction towards light. It
    is the soul as the opposite of the worm. In Western culture, the butterfly represents lightness and fickleness.
    It also has secondary meanings of joy and bliss and is very closely related to love, especially with wings and
    when being burned in Cupid's hand that is not holding the bow. Opposite of the hawk, the butterfly illustrates
    intuition as opposed to logic.
   Buzzards are ancestors of death and destruction. As scavengers, they "represent purification," and thus are
    also positive symbols, wherein destruction inevitably leads to a sort of purification, and can be religious in
    conjunction with the shark/fish.
                                                           C
   The candle symbolizes light in the darkness of life especially individual life, an illumination; it is the symbol of
    holy illumination of the spirit of truth. Lit in times of death, candles signify the light in the next world, and they
    represent Christ as the light. Purification and cleansing are closely related. They are also festive in nature.
    In Judaism the holiday Hanukah is the 'Festival of Lights', and a candle is lit for each of the 8 nights. They
    are used to ward off evil spirits; life is safe as long as a candle burns.
   The castle is a symbol of enclosure, of the walled and defended city; often, the castle holds "some treasure
    or imprisoned person and is inhabited by a monster or wicked person who must be overcome to obtain the
    treasure or release the imprisoned. The heroines of fairy tales sleep in castles as they wait for Prince
    Charming to awaken them, which is a symbol of the awakening of the conscious mind. It may also reflect
    wealth and luxury, and is generally located on the top of a mountain or hill, which gives it height, symbolic of
    strength. The shape and color help define it as an embattled, spiritual power, a vigil, such as black (other
    world, no return), light (appears suddenly, contains treasure, damsel and knight).
   Caves are thought to be closely related to the symbolic heart, and are often places where the self and ego
    unite. They can be secret passageways to an underworld, places in which to make contact with the powers
    and forces which will eventually make their way into the world of light. In popular legend, caves usually
    house gnomes, spirits, dragons, and treasure and are often the site for initiation ceremonies. A dreamer's
    dangerous passage through a cave symbolizes the search for the meaning of life in the deep strata of the
    "maternal unconscious.” Entering the cave is considered re-entry into the womb of Mother Earth. However,
    they have a general symbolism of containment.
   Chains are the physical constraints of bondage and slavery; it is not surprising, therefore, that they have
    naturally come to symbolize these concepts. Chains also represent communication and marriage, a powerful
    and lasting unity between two entities. They can also stand for dual streams, involution and evolution, of the
    universe. A chain of gold shows merit.
                                                           D
   Dance can signify joy, celebration, and/or possession by a higher power, be it good or evil. The act of
    dancing is also linked with rhythm and transforming time into motion. Group dances can be a form of prayer
    or reverence, and circular dance often mimics the circular motion of heavenly bodies and/or the revolution of
    the earth around the sun. Dance is often linked tightly with creation, hence its bond to magic.
   Darkness can encompass a primitive chaos and the powers of that chaos; it is not essentially evil, yet it is
    largely associated with death and destruction, captivity and spiritual darkness. Darkness indicates that the
    end of the world is forthcoming but can also be an emblem of bad judgment, misfortune and ignorance. The
    Prince of Darkness is the devil.
   Dawn suggests illumination and hope, the beginning of a new day and thus a chance for happiness and
    improvement. Sunrise is a symbol of birth and rebirth, of awakening and the coming of light, resurrection.
   Its incomparable hardness makes the diamond an appropriate symbol for durability and constancy. Its
    clarity yields the notions of constancy, sincerity, and innocence. The diamond is light, life, the sun; it is an
    emblem of purity and perfection, of invincible spiritual power, and it is the stone of commitment, faithfulness,
    and promise between husband and wife.
   The dog is the first domesticated animal and is symbolically associated with loyalty and vigilance, often
    acting as guardian and protector. Dogs are portrayed as guides and companions, hence the notion of "man's
    best friend.” They are often associated with art and cunning, as they can be trained to do the greatest
    variety of jobs. While rarely negative symbols, dogs do have some unfavorable characteristics and can be
    depicted as depraved animals, cursed their enemies. 'Sick as a dog' came from the notion that they return to
    their vomit.
   Transition and metamorphosis are the most common ideas represented by the symbol of the door; it is a
    passage from one place to another, between different states, between lightness and darkness. The act of
    passing over the threshold of a door signifies that one must leave behind his materialism and personality to
    confront inner silence and meditation. It is abandoning the old and embracing the new; an open door
    signifies welcome and invites discovery and investigation, while a closed door represents rejection,
    protection, secrecy, exclusion, and imprisonment.
   The dragon is a highly complex symbol, combining images of the serpent and the bird, two loaded images in
    isolation. Together, they form one of the most powerful monsters dating back to antiquity. The dragon is a
    symbol of evil, in both the chivalric and Christian traditions. In the Orient, it symbolizes supernatural power,
    wisdom, strength, and hidden knowledge. In most traditions, it is the embodiment of chaos and untamed
    nature. It is associated with the depths of the unknown sea, with the mountaintops, and with the clouds.
    Heroes typically fight ("slay") dragons to gain control over territory; dragons are also usually guardians of a
    treasure, whether it is material (as in gold) or symbolic (as in knowledge). Killing the dragon is the conflict
    between light and darkness, slaying the forces of evil.
                                                          E
   With its acute eyesight, the eagle has come to embody an all-seeing eye. The eagle is often a solar symbol
    and can be linked to all sky gods. It signifies inspiration, release from bondage, victory, longevity, speed,
    pride, father and royalty; it is often an emblem for powerful nations. Hence, a two-headed eagle has come to
    often mean the union of two nations, but it also means creative power. Since it lives in full light of the sun, it
    is considered luminous and shares characteristics with air and fire. Through its detachment from earth, it
    represents spirit and soul. The eagle is often depicted in combat with other animals; when seen in combat
    with a bull or lion, it represents the spirit or the intellect in conflict with the physical. When shown with a
    serpent in its talons, the two represent the struggle and unity of light and darkness, good and evil. In this
    context the eagle depicts light and good, while the serpent represents evil and darkness. Often its opposite is
    the owl -- the bird of darkness and death.
   The ear is associated with the spiral, the whorled shell and the sea. It has long been considered the seat of
    memory, receptivity, inquisitiveness and awakening. Small ears represent shyness and low self-esteem,
    while large ears reflect an extroverted personality and adaptive ease. Ears are seen as the portal for
    temptation or flattery. The phrase 'ear burns' comes to mean that someone is talking about you.
   Eyes are probably the most important symbolic sensory organs. They can represent clairvoyance,
    omniscience, and/or a gateway into the soul. Other qualities that eyes are commonly associated with are
    intelligence, light, vigilance, moral conscience, and truth. Looking someone in the eye is a western custom of
    honesty. In this way covering of the eyes, by wearing a helmet, sunglasses, etc. can mean mystery, not
    seeing the complete truth, or deceit. However, in other cultural contexts, the obscuring of the eyes can
    convey respect (Asian) or modesty and submission (many Middle Eastern women wear veils for this
    purpose). The eye often means judgment and authority. Different colors of the eyes carry different meanings:
    blue - a sign of being in love, innocence; green - jealousy, a sign of distrust, rarity; red - demonic, weeping,
    fury. Different numbers of eyes have different meanings as well: one - subhuman, divine omniscience,
    superhuman (usually negative); two - normality, both physically and spiritually; three - superhuman powers,
    can be either benevolent or malevolent; multiple - stars and darkness.
                                                          F
   The father is the sun; he represents the traditional forces of law and order, often signifying physical, mental,
    and spiritual superiority in myth and legend. He is Father Time; he is the Heavenly Father.
   The feather is absolute lightness, flight, the element of wind and air. To wear feathers is to assume the
    powers of the bird and, thus, puts the wearer in touch with the knowledge of the bird. A feather can also
    mean emptiness, dryness, height, flight, soul/heart, charity, faith and justice. Three feathers often connote
    power, divinity and light. Crimson feathers are normally associated with fairies. A feather crown is a halo.
   The symbolic nature of fish is as inseparable from that of water as the two are connected in life. In Fish can
    also be symbolic of the faithful submerged in the waters of life. Yet fish are also cold-blooded, not driven by
    passion, and often represent such emotionless entities.
   The flower and the blossom are both universal symbols of young life. Flowers are associated with the sun
    because the arrangement of its petals is reminiscent of the shape of a star; they may be innocent
    representatives of spring, or they may designate lust and the realm of the erotic. They are transitory, evoking
    a certain "joie de vivre," or an understanding of the fragile quality of childhood. The flower is often a
    representative of beauty. The color of the flower often has a great deal to do with the symbolism it carries;
    red is love and passion, white is innocence and blamelessness. Scattered flowers often mean joy, especially
    in context with rose bearers of a wedding.
   Fog illustrates obscurity, indistinction; in the Bible, it is an image preceding great revelations. It is the "gray
    zone" between reality and unreality, and uncertainty about the future and beyond. It can also represent
    approaching death, isolation, or the transformation into the unreal.
   The foot/feet are points of contact with the ground and, thus, make good conductors of the magical or
    spiritual fluid with which a holy man is charged. It can connote dying, passing on as well as slow wandering.
    Bare feet are signs of mourning and respect. Footprints have a high relation to black magic; fairies have no
    footprints. Feet can also bring luck and prosperity.
   The forest is a mysterious place; in legends and fairy tales, it is usually inhabited by mysterious creatures,
    symbols of all of the dangers with which young people must contend if they are to become adults. It is a
    place of testing; a realm of death holding the secrets of nature which man must penetrate to find meaning.
                                                         G
   Most commonly used as a reference to the Garden of Eden, a garden is typically an earthly paradise. It was
    created by God as a safe enclosure for Adam and Eve; the enclosed garden is an archetypal image of the
    soul, of innocence, of happiness; it is a place for growth of the inner Self. It is a symbol of consciousness
    because of its order and enclosed characteristics, as opposed to the unconscious forest.
   The gate is an entryway into an unknown place or a place of great significance; it is a threshold and may
    connect the living and the dead. Gates are normally guarded by symbolic animals: the lion, dragon, bull, and
    dog. In many cultures, passing through a gateway signifies a right of passage. It can be the function of a
    door between life and death - gates of Heaven. Justice, mercy, praise and righteousness are also related
    symbols. Combinations with other words: open gate - hospitality, peace; closed - expulsion (Paradise),
    inhospitality, misery, war; dark. A gate can often be an entrance to the Underworld.
   The giant is somewhat of a noble savage, a symbol of nature in the wild in its primeval state before it was
    annexed by civilization. The connection presumably lies in the idea that before the coming of civilization only
    human-like creatures with extraordinary physical powers could cope with the rigors of the environment. In
    ancient mythology, giants represent the destructive forces of nature; they are often clumsy and malicious.
   Glass objects, because of their transparent nature, are usually representative of an inner plane,
    transportation into a fairy tale world. Colorless (clear) glass is typically seen as purity. Looking through blue
    colored glass gives us prejudice but through rosy colored glass optimism.
   Often, gloves merely symbolize the hand itself; usually, however, they signify high status, clean hands,
    white gloves as cleanliness and purity. They also conceal; they highlight the gestures of the hand. Gloves
    embody power and protection as well as nobility. However, gloves can also be mysterious, often worn by
    thieves, witches and nightriders. Honor is represented when the right glove is removed.
                                                         H
   Hair symbolizes physical strength and virility; the virtues and properties of a person are said to be
    concentrated in his hair and nails. It is a symbol of instinct, of female seduction and physical attraction.
    Baldness may suggest sterility. Hair flowing depicts freedom and looseness; the unwilling removal of hair
    may be a castration symbol. It carries the context of magical power; witches had their hair shaven off, as well
    as in the Bible, in which Samson loses all his power when his locks are stripped. It can be thought of as the
    external soul. Hair on differing parts of the body infers different meanings as well: hair of the head denotes
    spiritual powers; hair of the body signifies irrational powers. In addition, different forms of hair also carry
    differing connotations: loose hair is usually kept by a woman suspected of adultery, disheveled hair is a
    conventional sign of bereavement, long hair is usually associated with a woman, but can mean penitence in
    a man, and curly hair notes an artist or speaker of many languages.
   The halo links individuals with divine power. It commonly emphasizes wisdom and life force emanating from
    the head, and it usually tied with the notion of the supernatural.
   The hammer is essentially a masculine force, and when striking or crushing something, it represents justice
    and revenge. The hammer is not only a tool; it represents might
   The hand is the most frequently symbolized part of the human body. It gives blessing and is expressive.
    According to Aristotle, the hand is the "tool of tools." In general it is strength, power and protection. However,
    it can just as easily mean generosity, hospitality and stability; "lend a hand". It is used in gestures of greeting
    and friendship (shake hands). The right and left hands provide different symbols related to each: right is the
    rational, conscious and logical, as well as aggressive and anxious; the left represents weakness, decay,
    death. However, the two can be juxtaposed to symbolize balance and the middle Hand gestures vary in
    symbol: laying hands on something shows a blessing, consecration, transference of guilt, healing; raising
    one's hand is to swear and shows honesty; hand on heart emulates love, adoration, salutation; two hands
    clasped demonstrate peace, alliance, friendship; hands at side show negligence, arrogance (on hips); and
    hands with water equals purification, cleanliness, innocence.
   The heart is the locus of physical and spiritual being, and represents the central wisdom of feeling as
    opposed to the head-wisdom of reason. It is compassion and understanding, life giving and complex. It is a
    symbol for love.
   Along with earth, heaven completes the spiritual half of the spirit/matter duality. It is almost universally
    regarded as the home of the gods or God, and it is a superior realm.
   Hell is associated with darkness and night, yet also with red, flaming heat. In primitive man, it was the
    symbol of night and the frightening unknown. It is a place underground, where the suffering souls of the dead
    remain eternally. It could represent jealousy, moral suffering, and is a punishment for godless mortals.
   The hole is, quite literally, a void or emptiness.
   Horns are an animal's weapon, so it follows that as a symbol they function as representing strength and
    aggressiveness. They are also the power and dignity of the divinity, and horned gods usually represent
    warriors and lords of animals. Horns represent salvation, immortality and durability.
   The horse is quite often a solar symbol, and in the Bible it is one of intelligence. According to its color, a
    horse may symbolize either destruction or victory (fiery-red and white, respectively). It is a maternal
    archetype, and it might also symbolize impulsiveness, impetuosity of desire, the instinctive impulses.
   The house is one of the centers of the world. It is a sacred place, and it is an image of the universe. It
    parallels the sheltering aspect of the Great Mother, and it is the center of civilization. Shelter and security are
    words commonly used surrounding house.
                                                           I
   Ice is a frequently employed symbol within the genre of science fiction. It is a symbol of rigidity, frigidity, the
    waters of the earth as opposed to the fresh and living water of the fountain of Paradise. It is coldness,
    absence of love, difficult and unexplored territory not conducive to human life and life in general. With winter
    is represents the season of death.
   The insect is a symbol of greed and sensual pleasure. In fairy tales, insects often symbolize precision: they
    are called upon to do impossible tasks. The can also be plague and destruction, like the locust swarms that
    descended on Egypt in the biblical story of Daniel. They represent short, feeble life.
   An island is a refuge, a place distanced from crowds and noisy civilization. It might represent a lost
    paradise, or the center of the personality. An island can also be a place of loneliness and isolation.
    However, with solitude, it can represent stability and the challenge of the undiscovered.
   Ivy is an evergreen, and by this connection stands for eternity and life, for immortality. It also may represent
    dependence and attachment, which can be seen in the way it climbs trees and buildings to get sunlight.
                                                           J
   The jaws of a monster depict either the gates of hell or the descent into the underworld, or they are the
    contraries which must be transcended in order to attain to ultimate reality and spiritual enlightenment.
   In myth, a journey represents the call of fate, the transference of a hero to an unknown zone, full of danger
    and treasure in an unknown land, an underworld, a forest, a lost island, or a mountain. Symbolically, it is a
    spiritual adventure, designed to explore the Self until serenity is achieved. Desire for discovery or change is
    inherent.
                                                          K
   The key is the mechanism of the powers of opening and closing and denotes liberation, knowledge, mystery,
    and initiation. In addition, elements of secrecy and discretion coincide.
   The king is a symbolic figure of authority and power, of patriarchy and of sovereignty. Together with his
    queen, they embody the perfect union.
   The knife is a tool with loaded symbolic meaning; the knife signifies severance, death, sacrifice, division, or
    liberation. As a base or secret weapon, the knife connotes revenge and sudden defense, often hidden.
   The knot may bind or loosen, and it represents continuity, connection, and fate. When undone, the knot
    signifies freedom. Knot imagery is often associated with magic spells and preventative charms, and is one of
    the fundamental icons in Buddhism as it represents long life and happiness in the form of the eternal knot.
                                                          L
   The ladder (or staircase) is symbolic of the connection between heaven and earth. It represents progress,
    ascension, and spiritual passage through the levels of initiation. It can also connote ambition, as in the
    gradual acquisition of knowledge, as well as overcoming a problem.
   A lake can represent the transition of life, death and resurrection. Taking into consideration its reflecting
    power, it symbolizes a mirror for self-contemplation as well as a chance for revelation.
   The lamb is typically a sacrificial animal and may also symbolize gentleness, innocence, and purity. When
    depicted with the lion, the pair can mean a state of paradise. In addition, the lamb symbolizes sweetness,
    forgiveness and meekness. A black lamb has certain significance; a flock cannot prosper without one yet
    more than one is bad luck.
   Life, the light of divinity, wisdom, intellect, and good works are all manifestations of the symbolic nature of
    the lamp. Lamps can also be a gateway to another plane, as in the story of Aladdin and the genie. It brings
    protection against dark demons and can be the illumination of the spirit. It is one a pinnacle symbol of self-
    sacrifice, as it consumes itself to offer light to the world.
   While green leaves depict hope, renewal, and revival, dead leaves represent decay and sadness. In
    general, leaves are symbolic of fertility and growth. They often give a scary feeling, as the rustling of nearby
    leaves can mean evil is lurking near. The term 'turning over a new leaf' is a Western idiom offering people a
    chance to start anew and amend past mistakes.
   The notion of left has adopted the meaning of darkness and illegitimacy, of the past as opposed to the
    future. The left can also be lunar and refer to looking inwards on oneself.
   Light is one of the most universal and fundamental symbols. It is the spiritual and the divine; it is illumination
    and intelligence. Light is the source of goodness and the ultimate reality. Light is knowledge. Purity and
    morality are connected terms as well.
   The bolt of lightning is a traditional symbol of sudden illumination and the destruction of ignorance; it also
    represents a punishment of humans by the gods from the skies, most commonly attributed to Zeus, king of
    the gods. In dreams, the lightning bolt is an image of sudden and terrible events and a symbol of intuition.
    Although it can carry negative connotation, lightning is also a form of divine message, honoring those
    chosen.
   The line divides, measures, and binds; a straight line is infinite and may symbolize the path to man’s destiny.
    When the line is horizontal, it reflects the temporal world, and, when vertical, it reflects the spiritual real. A
    sinusoidal line reflects motion, as in the movement of oceanic waves, and a straight line reflects an
    undeviating line of conduct.
   The lion relates to almost any proud, courageous characteristic. Its most common traits are majesty,
    strength, courage, justice, and military might. It is a symbol of kingly power and might, but as the lioness, it is
    commonly related to the Great Mother and protection.
                                                          M
   Man is a microcosm, a reflection of the universe.
   Masks cover the face, hiding emotion and personality, like the hood of a medieval executioner or as in
    traditional Japanese theater. A mask may allow its wearer to emphasize one facet of him/herself, or
    submerge him/herself and perform acts that are totally out of his/her character.
   Milk is a powerful symbol within most cultural traditions. It is the fluid of eternal life, fertility, abundance. Milk
    symbolizes the mother; it is deeply connected with life itself.
   The mirror is a reflection of the soul; it does not lie, it is absolute truth.
   The moon represents the rhythm of time as it embodies the cycle. The phases of the moon symbolize
    immortality and eternity, enlightenment or the dark side of Nature herself. It might reflect inner knowledge, or
    the phases of man's condition on earth, since it controls the tides, the rains, the waters, and the seasons. It
    is the middle ground between the light of the sun and the darkness of night. It provides analogy for the
    stages of human development: the new moon is infancy, the crescent is youth and adolescence, the full
    moon is maturity and pregnancy, and the waning moon represents the decline of life.
   The mother is the archetypal feminine, symbolizing all phases of life, fertility, eternal renewal and rebirth,
    protection, shelter, warmth, and nourishment. She is the Virgin Mother or the wicked stepmother, but she is a
    figure perpetually embedded deep within the individual, collective, and universal psyches.
   The mountain is thought to contain divine inspiration, and it is the focus of pilgrimages of transcendence
    and spiritual elevation. It is a universal symbol of the nearness of God, as it surpasses ordinary humanity
    and extends toward the sky and the heavens. It symbolizes constancy, permanence, motionlessness, and its
    peak spiritually signifies the state of absolute consciousness. In dreams, a mountain signifies danger, but
    climbing a mountain depicts inner elevation.
   The mouth is the center of many of the fundamental components of human activity. It is consumption,
    speech, breath, romance; it is communication, interaction, almost a door to the soul. As the mouth of a river,
    it assumes the meaning of a door or gate, which lends access to another realm of existence.
   Mud is a combination of earth and water, and, in that respect, can be seen as the source of vegetation and
    life. Mud can also be a quagmire, inhibiting progress and making things filthy.
   The toadstool versions are hallucinogenic, and they are usually considered symbols of good fortune;
    mushrooms also represent rapid growth, due to this unusual physical characteristic.
                                                           N
   The nail is associated in the Christian tradition with the crucifixion of Christ, thus symbolizing his passion.
   The necklace indicates dignity and office but is also a binding symbol; it is the connection between links.
   Night is typically associated with the obscurity and mystery of darkness, with the moon as its singular eye. It
    is the symbol of ignorance, the unconscious, and latent potential.

                                                           O
   Oak is usually thought of as masculine, strength, protection, durability, and/or the human body.
   The ocean is the beginning of life on Earth and symbolizes formlessness, the unfathomable, and chaos.
    The ocean can also be seen as a symbol of stability, as it can exist largely unchanged for centuries. The
    ocean is considered to be boundless, a place where one can easily be lost, and can therefore be seen to
    represent the boundless span of life, and the way one can get lost on the journey through life.
   The oyster provides yet another symbol of the female womb, and the creative force of the feminine principle,
    widely recognized for its production of the pearl.
                                                           P
   The pearl is a symbol of perfection and incorruptibility; it is a symbol of long life and fertility. Buried within the
    oyster shell, the pearl represents hidden knowledge, and it is highly feminine. Many eastern philosophies
    (Buddhism, Taoism, Hindu) relate the "flaming pearl" to wisdom and spiritual awareness.
   The pen represents learning, knowledge, and the creation of destinies.
   The pillar is the bridge between heaven and earth and represents stability; broken, it is death and mortality.
   Prayer often denotes humility, humbling oneself before a higher power, a request for divine intervention,
    and/or repentance. It can also represent an immersion of self in the spirit; group prayer may indicate the
    absorption of oneself into a larger whole.
   The prince and princess signify the "potential of royalty; the power and vigor of youthful royalty. The prince
    is associated with the king as the fertility of his people and land. Winning the hand of the princess, in myth
    and legend, is to aspire to the superior or highest state, a situation fraught with danger which can either kill
    the aspirant or raise him to a higher and more noble state, as in psychic and spiritual aspirations and quests"
    (Cooper, 134).
                                                           Q
   In the history of symbols the importance of the queen is not necessarily comparable to that of the king; she
    appears rather as a complementary term in dualities, rarely standing alone, at least in secular contexts. In
    fairy tales and legends, on the other hand, we often find female royalty from the supernatural realm, for
    example the queen of the fairies, or, negatively valued, the queen of the witches. These figures suggest that
    in older times, at least in nonsecular contexts, women were allowed more influence than in later times
                                                           R
   The rabbit, because of its rapid reproduction rate, often symbolizes fertility and lust.
   Depending upon its level of intensity, rain may either serve as life-giving or life-destroying. It is revitalizing,
    fertilizing, and heavenly, and often marks acts of purification.
   To observe a rainbow is to bear witness to a spectacle of heavenly glory, of celestial wonder. The rainbow
    often symbolizes transfiguration and behaves as a bridge between earth and paradise.
   As opposed to left, right is typically recognized as symbolizing the solar, masculine, progressive principle. It
    is the honorable side, the good side, the truthful and trustworthy; it is also associated with daily activities,
    while the left tends more to the magical and supernatural.
   The ring is a tangible manifestation of the circle; it represents infinity and eternity, divinity and life. The ring
    also represents power, dignity, sovereignty, and strength. Thus, to bestow a ring is to indicate transference
    of power. Exemplified by the traditional wedding ring, the object is also binding, as with husband and wife.
   In their endless flow, rivers have evolved into symbols of life itself. The crossing of a river from one bank to
    the other indicates that a rite of passage has just been completed. The mouth of the river shares meaning
    with the gate and the door as a passage to another world.
   A rock is the ultimate embodiment of permanence, stability, and reliability. It is cold and hard, yet eternal;
    thus, they often symbolize the divine, the immortal.
   Rockets can signify exploration, a journey, man’s thrust beyond the earth, science, and/or technology.
   The rope may be considered to represent binding and limiting or infinite freedom, depending upon the
    context in which it is encountered.
   The rose has also become a symbol for earthly love and passion. It is beauty and perfection, happiness and
    grace, yet it is also sensuality and seduction.
                                                         S
   The sea, as opposed to the ocean, has known boundaries, and thus can be interpreted as being symbolic of
    the "known quantities of life." Inasmuch as the sea can symbolize life, a journey across the sea can be seen
    as a symbolic journey across the "sea of life."
   The serpent/snake, a universal and complex symbol, can represent death, destruction, evil, a penetrating
    legless essence, and/or poison. The serpent can also represent temptation, the devil, and deceit. The snake
    can have positive implications, too; when intertwined with the tree of life, it represents good, and it can also
    be associated with healing and/or rebirth as it sheds its skin.
   With light, shadows are often identified with a person's soul and are considered dark entities with a nature
    all of their own. Shadows are the unconscious layers of the personality that are integrated into the structure
    of the "experienced world" only through the process of individuation.
   Sharks can be symbolic of persistence and perseverance. Sharks remain essentially unchanged since they
    evolved over 350 million years ago.
   Ships are generally larger than boats but share many of the same meanings. With their close connection to
    water, ships often bear significance as fertility symbols.
   Shoes might represent the lowly and the humble, or authority and power, depending upon the context. Since
    slaves went barefoot, they might represent liberty.
   The sky represents infinity, eternity, immortality, and transcendence; it is the residence of the gods and has
    omnipotence. The sky also is symbolic of order in the universe.
   Song can be an expression of happiness or love; the singing of hymns is directly related to prayer, usually
    conveying adoration or homage. Birds' songs are often linked to spring, and/or the dawn. The song can also
    be construed as a form of hypnosis or magic spell. Funeral dirges are often associated with mourning and
    death.
   The spider, motionless in the center of its web and repellant to most people, is a symbol of anguish and
    associated with narcissism. The spider can also be linked to various moon goddesses and the Great Mother
    in the fact that they are all weavers and creators.
   The sun is the absolute cosmic power; it is the center of being and intuition; it is knowledge and warmth,
    glory and splendor.
   The sword symbolizes power, protection, authority, strength, and courage; metaphysically, it represents
    discrimination and the penetrating power of the intellect.
                                                        T
   Tables are largely associated with gatherings and communions, and Tables of the Law represent judgment
    and legislation.
   Teeth can symbolize attack and defense, for they are the primary weapons for most animals. Baring one's
    teeth, as in a snarl, is commonly seen as a defensive action. Teeth can also be linked to age. The most
    rudimentary way to tell the age of an animal is to look at their teeth; the amount of wear on them will be a
    decent indicator.
   Denoting sin, sorrow and hardship, the thorn is one of the most ancient symbols in the world; together with
    the rose, it represents pain and pleasure.
   The throne signals a hierarchical system, as it provides a physical and visual mechanism for establishing
    the position and power of the leader. It demonstrates authority and often represents the inhabitant's
    relationship with divinity.
   Thunder is typically perceived as an expression of the sentiments of God or the gods; it is considered a
    vehicle for conveying divine wrath. While thunder is a voice, a lightning bolt is a weapon.
   Toads are traditionally negative symbols: they are commonly viewed as demonic creatures, often magical
    yet evil. In many legends, toads figure as the guardian of treasure; its transformation from tadpole to maturity
    renders the toad a frequent symbol of resurrection and rebirth.
   Symbolically, the tomb represents the imprisonment of the soul within the body.
   The tongue may have serpent symbolism or it may simply suggest language. Tongues are also indicative of
    the voice of the gods;
   As a source of light, the torch is illumination, intelligence, and spirituality; the extinguished torch signifies
    death.
   The tower is a vertical structure, linking heaven and earth; in this way it is akin to a ladder in its symbolic
    form. It can be a stronghold or a prison; the tower may signify ascent.
   Train symbolism is related to social life, destiny, journey, and fatalism.
   On the issue of treasure, ‘the search for treasure has a twofold symbolism: either the search is for earthly
    treasure, such as gold or jewels, usually hidden in a cave or underground, the finding of which brings trials
    and tribulations and, where greed is the motive, leads to final disaster, or the search is for spiritual treasure,
    symbolizing esoteric knowledge or enlightenment; this represents man's quest for, and discovery of, his own
    true nature.
   The tree is dynamic life itself, the result of heaven, earth, and water. It is the nourishing, sheltering image of
    the Great Mother, rooted in the earth and reaching toward the heavens, evocative of eternity. An evergreen
    symbolizes immortality, and the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge are both in Paradise.
   Viewed as a disturbance in the ocean, a tsunami or tornado can be symbolic of life’s disturbances, of
    events which disrupt life in general. These natural disasters are symbolic of events in life which cause
    distress and loss.
                                                         U
   The umbrella usually symbolizes the canopy of the heavens, shelter, and protection. The parasol is a
    symbol of the sun, and an umbrella is a symbol of the shade. It is often an emblem of power and dignity.
   The unicorn is a fabled creature, a horse with a spiraled horn. In Greek history, that horn was said to have
    healing powers; the unicorn became a symbol of purity and strength and is an emblem of moral virtues.

                                                         V
   The valley is commonly a symbol of fertility and life; it evokes images of cultivation
   The veil is the symbol of the pre-enlightened state, hidden knowledge, secrecy, illusion, and ignorance. It
    conceals, but is often intended as protection rather than deception; it might also be a mark of modesty and
    virtue in many cultures, often worn by women and girls to display their lack of vanity.
                                                         W
   Folklore and fairy tales are full of magic wands, objects of power and conductors of the supernatural forces.
    They usually accompany magicians, shamans, and medicine men; no fairy godmother would be complete
    without her requisite magic wand. The magic wand is most commonly associated with the mace, scepter,
    trident, and crosier as symbolic items.
   The lonely wanderer is symbolic of an aimless existence.
   The spider web, and webs in general, indicate the intricate network of space and time, the cosmic plan. The
    web is an earthly snare, denoting human frailty.
   The well is associated with the symbolic notions of the cleansing bath, drinking from the sources of life, and
    quenching our thirst for higher knowledge.
   As is exemplified in the Biblical story of Jonah, the belly of the whale is a realm of death and rebirth;
    emerging from a whale is initiation into a new life, or resurrection.
   The meaning of the wheel as a symbolic entity is similar to that of the circle, with the additional quality of
    movement. As a symbol of the sun, the wheel’s spokes parallel the rays of the sun
   The whirlpool is a spiral, the source of life.
   Wind is the messenger of divine intervention, and it is the vital breath of the universe. It often represents the
    fleeting and transient, the elusive and the intangible.
   Wine may be the fluid of life or the symbol of the blood of death and is typically associated with its powers of
    intoxication. Wine and blood are often interchangeable symbols.
   Wings carry a number of associations: they may accompany images of Christian angels, fairies, spirits, and
    demons. They not only represent the ability to fly but also suggest the improvement of the subject. Winged
    creatures are often messengers of the gods, and they are a symbol of freedom and spirituality. In dreams,
    wings represent the release of creative energy.
   The wolf figures frequently in fairy tales as the symbol of the enemy, of the menacing animal. It is evil, the
    devouring, fierce creature which haunts and stalks. Wolves are crafty and represent untamed energies.
   The woman is the Great Mother; she is most commonly symbolized by the moon, the earth, and the waters.
    She is protective, nurturing, passive -- a hollow to be entered. She is a spiritual guide but may also be a sign
    of seduction.
   In Catholicism, wood is most frequently associated with the cross; otherwise, it may represent the totality of
    paradise, shelter, the cradle or the coffin.
                                                    X, Y, Z
   The zodiac is an imaginary belt that divides the stars into twelve constellations, each constellation in turn
    represented by a symbol. According to Plato, those twelve signs are the gates of heaven; each has its own
    characteristics and corresponds to its own psychological types.

THE FOUR ELEMENTS
 The four elements of western culture are: AIR, EARTH, FIRE, and WATER. These four elements were
   believed to be essential to life.
 Air is considered active and male. It is light, mobile, and has the quality of dryness. Being that which we
   breathe, it is essential to life and can be thought of as the primary element. The Greek "spiro" means
   "breath," from this we get inspiration, as if the gods were filling us with the divine breath. Air is also
   connected with stormy wind (creation) and a medium for movement. Air can also be thought of as human
   freedom, cold and aggressive and memory. Often fresh night air is a sign of danger and a transition to
   renewed hope, steadfastness, salvation, stability, and/or tranquility.
 Earth is commonly seen nourishment, fertility, infinite creativity, and/or longevity. Earth represents matter,
   while heaven stands for spirit. As one of the four elements, earth can be the ground, stability, a foundation
   for life and for the structures of man and nature.

   Fire consumes, warms, and illuminates but can also bring pain and death; thus, its symbolic meaning varies
    wildly, depending upon the context of its use. It is often the symbol of inspiration, and yet it is also the
    predominant symbol of hell; fire is the only one of the four elements that humans can produce themselves,
    so it bridges the connection between mortals and gods. Rituals often involve an eternal flame, and kindling a
    fire is equated with birth and resurrection. Fire can also be seen as a force of purification. In a more modern
    context, forest fires, while looked upon as destructive and costly by modern society (and especially by the
    various media), are actually, from a scientific and ecological point of view quite positive as a mode of
    purification -- old growth that is burned away makes way for new growth to begin, and the entire ecosystem
    is rejuvenated. Many cultures view fire as a symbol of wisdom and knowledge.
   Water popularly represents life. It can be associated with birth, fertility, and refreshment. Christians are
    baptized with or in water, symbolizing a purification of the soul, and an admission into the faith. However,
    water can also be destructive (as in the biblical flood which only Noah and his family escaped); water drowns
    and erodes, wearing away even the densest of stones given enough time. Water is also one of the four
    elements essential to life in traditional western philosophy. Its qualities are fluidity and cohesiveness. Flowing
    water usually represents change and the passage of time.

COLORS
 Black represents a lack of color, the primordial void, emptiness. It can also mean sorrow or mourning, in the
  Christian tradition of wearing black to funerals. In this respect it can also symbolize death. Black is also
  linked to witchcraft (Black Magic), evil, and the unknown, as the predominant color worn by "evil witches" in
  colonial America. The stock market crash of 1929 was dubbed "Black Tuesday,” further linking the color with
  loss, depression, and despair.
 Blue is the color most often associated with issues of the spirit and intellect. It is the color of sky and heaven
  and also has strong connections with nearly all forms of water; for this reason it can have feminine, cool, and
  reflective qualities. Its link to the sky also connotes eternity and immensity, time and space. Blue may be
  truth (no clouds to hide it) and transparency; it is linked to loyalty, fidelity, constancy, and chastity. Many
  babies are born with blue eyes, thus innocence and purity can be attributed to the color. With relation to the
  moon, the color blue can represent tender love, passive qualities, and deep wisdom. However, when lights
  burn blue, they are associated with witchcraft, alluding to possible ghosts.
 Brown is often associated with the earth. It can mean spiritual death or “death” to the world because some
  groups of monks, friars, etc. wear brown. This color is often related to autumn and sadness. It also shows
  lack of emotion, sorrow, and barrenness. Characteristics of those inclined to brown are calmness, passivity,
  conservative, dependable, practical and earthly.
 Gold is illuminating, sacred, and durable; it is precious. It is almost universally associated with the sun, or
  the highest stage in spiritual development. It is heralded as embodying the powers of the earth, and it is light.
  It is the heart of the earth, so it is symbolic of superiority.
   Gray is often seen as neutral, depression, and humility. Ashes are usually gray in color, and, therefore, a
    natural correlation exists between the two. Christianity commonly views gray as symbolic of death of the
    body while the soul remains eternal.
   Green is a dualistic color. It can represent envy, evil, and trickery, and/or growth, renewal, and life, as in lush
    vegetation. It represents resurrection, permanence, and love, and was the color of Aphrodite, Greek love
    goddess, born from the green sea.
   Orange has become predominantly a symbol of fertility; it is most often linked to flame and fire, conveying
    their qualities. Orange can also mean luxury.
   Purple is derived from the combination of red and blue; it unites red's fiery masculinity with blue's cool
    femininity. Purple is often used to represent royalty, imperial power, justice, and/or truth. Dried blood has a
    purple hue to it, and bruises on the flesh are often purple; in this respect it can be a sign of physical injury.
   Red is an emotionally charged color. It is associated with the sun and all gods of war, anger, blood-lust,
    vengeance, and fire. It can also mean love and passion.
   Silver often represents the moon, virginity, purity, the queen.
   White may be defined either as the absence of all color or the presence of all colors of the light spectrum,
    and can represent either innocence or the ultimate goal of purification. White is often the heavenly, while
    black is the underworld. It is light, air, life, holiness, love, redemption. The white flag is a symbol of surrender
    or friendship.
   Yellow often stands for light, the sun's rays, intellect, faith, and/or goodness. However, yellow can also be a
    sign of cowardice, betrayal, and/or jealousy. Insects that bear yellow and black stripes are often poisonous
    or attempting to mimic another poisonous insect, and in this respect yellow can be seen as a warning, and/or
    protection for its bearer. In medical terms, a yellow flag means quarantine.


SHAPES
 The circle is a universal symbol with extensive meaning. It represents the notions of totality, wholeness,
   original perfection, the self, the infinite, eternity, timelessness, all cyclic movement. God is a circle whose
   center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere' (Hermes Trismegistus)). As the sun, it is
   masculine power; as the soul and as encircling waters, it is the feminine maternal principle. It implies an idea
   of movement and symbolizes the cycle of time, the perpetual motion of everything that moves: the planets'
   journey around the sun, the circle of the zodiac, the great rhythm of the universe. The circle is also zero in
   our system of numbering, and symbolizes potential, or the embryo. It has a magical value as a protective
   agent and indicates the end of the process of individuation, of striving towards a psychic wholeness and
   self-realization. With the number ten, a circle symbolizes heaven and perfection as well as eternity.
 The cube is a three-dimensional square and is a symbol of stability and permanence, of geometric
   perfection. It represents the final stage of a cycle of immobility and can be seen as the truth because it looks
   the same from any perspective. It is commonly thought of as the counterpart of the sphere. The cube is, in
   essence, the squaring of a circle. Scientifically, the cube usually represents salt. It is the earth: a square plus
   the four elements plus three dimensions.
 The square is the earth, as opposed to the heavens; it is geometric perfection, static, denoting honesty and
   straightforwardness, morality and integrity. It is a symbol of constancy.
 The triangle is one of the simplest and most fundamental geometric symbols; it is often representative of the
   Holy Trinity. The triangle can also be a symbol for fire.
 The curve gives a sense of more energy and motion.

DIRECTIONS
 East is the direction of the rising sun and the dawn and is commonly associated with beginnings, birth,
   spring, and/or renewal. The east is a place where magicians often emigrate from and can hold
   characteristics of wisdom. The right (favorable) half of the body is representative of the east and is s
   opposed to the west, sinister half.
 North is most widely associated with cold, obscurity, winter, and old age.
 South is commonly linked to the noonday sun, summer, youth, and warmth.
 West is the direction of the setting sun and dusk, linking it with death, endings, the season of fall, and middle
   age. In the mid nineteenth century western culture witnessed westward expansion and the gold rush, so this
   context allows us to see west as opportunity, hope, and adventure.
NUMBERS
   0 - Zero is non-existence, numbers, the unlimited, the circle; it is the absence of all, without quantity or
    quality, the perfect form. The zero is the ultimate mystery, the incomprehensible absolute.
   1 - The most appropriate symbol of unity is the imperceptible mathematical point which is arbitrarily situated
    at the intersection of two lines or in the center of a circle, and which, through being displaced in space,
    begins a line, or creates a surface, or gives an idea of a third dimension. A point is one on the verge of
    generating everything. The number 1 symbolizes man, erect, a standing stone, phallus, pillar a vertical stick
   2 - Anything in twos shows a strong duality in Christ – both God and man.
   3 - The power of three is universal and is the tripartite nature of the world as heaven, earth and waters; it is
    man as body, soul and spirit; birth, life and death; beginning, middle, end; past, present, future. Three is the
    heavenly number representing the soul, as four is the body; three introduces the all-embracing Godhead.
    Folklore has three wishes, three tries, three princes or princesses or witches. The chief symbol of three is
    the triangle; it is the Trinity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
   4 - The number four shows a strong expression of self and is a powerful symbol of earth, i.e., 4 elements, 4
    seasons, 4 stages of man, 4 directions, 4 corners of the world.
   5 - The number five is exceedingly important in terms of its symbolic qualities. It represents human
    perfection because a man with outstretched arms and legs forms a pentagon with the head "dominating the
    four limbs, just as the spirit commands the quaternary of elements" (Julien, 155). There are five senses, five
    fingers per hand and five toes per foot; the five-pointed star, pointing upwards, symbolizes individuality and
    spiritual aspiration. When it points downwards, it represents witchcraft and black magic. This number has
    much Christian meaning as well: 5 wounds of Christ, 5 letters of Jesus. In nature it is the four cardinal
    directions plus the middle. It can mean spring and growth in nature as well.
   6 - Six is a number that has evil connotations and equates with the devil and ambivalence.
   7 - Seven is the perfect number since it merges the number three (the Trinity) with the number four (earth).
    For example, there are 7 days of creation, 7 days of the week, we are to forgive 7 x 70, 7 colors of the
    rainbow.
   8 - Eight is an attempt to bring an earthly creature into a spiritual circle; baptismal fonts are eight-sided.
   9 - The number nine is magical because you cannot get rid of nine. Every multiple of 9 reproduces a 9 -- (2
    x 9 = 18, 1 + 8 = 9 …)
   10 - Ten returns to order and oneness.
   12 – Twelve is a return to cosmic order (3 x 4). There are 12 tribes of Israel, 12 brothers of Joseph, 12
    months, 12 zodiac signs.
   40 -- The religious implications of the number forty are extensive. In Christianity, there are forty days of Lent,
    Christ's forty days in the wilderness, and forty days of resurrection from Easter to Ascension. In the Old
    Testament, there are forty days of Moses on Mt. Sinai, and forty days of Elijah in hiding. There are forty days
    of the Deluge, and forty years of the Jews wandering in the wilderness. It also represents purification since
    the Biblical flood was caused by forty days of rain. Jacob's embalming and mourning took forty days. Moses'
    life was divided into three periods of forty years.
             Color                                               Representation                                          Planetary     Elemental            Astral
                                                                                                                           Mate          Mate               Chart
C
    black            power, sexuality, sophistication, formality, eloquence, fear, evil, unhappiness,                  Saturn
O                    sadness, remorse, anger, mourning
L   blue             peace, spirituality, spiritual energy, intellect, Inspiration, stability, trust loyalty, truth,   Jupiter       water
O                    confidence, (appetite suppressant)
    bright green     jealousy, envy, inexperience, misfortune
R   brown            neutralizing, earth, hearth, home, outdoors, reliability, comfort, simplicity,                                                Capricorn

    dark blue        depression                                                                                                                    Virgo/Sagittarius
S
    gold             drawing strength from others; hiding behind an illusion; loss of confidence                       sun                         Leo
Y
M   golden yellow    fear, dishonesty, cowardice, betrayal, deceit, illness, hazard
    green            material success, abundance, fertility, nature, environment, renewal, youth, vigor,               Venus         earth         Taurus/Libra
B
                     generosity,
O   orange           concentration, psychic energy, balance, warmth, enthusiasm, vibrant, demanding of                                             Leo
L                    attention, encouragement,
    pink             true love, friendship, attraction, romance, spiritual awakening, togetherness                                                 Gemini
I
S   purple           magical forces, power over obstacles, royalty, nobility, spirituality, ceremony,                  Mercury
M                    transformation, wisdom,
    red              passion, vigor, sexual energy, excitement, aggression, danger, fire, war, blood, all              Mars          fire          Aries/Scorpio
                     things intense and passionate
    white            reverence, purity, simplicity, cleanliness, peace, humility, precision, Innocence,                moon
                     youth, birth, winter, snow, good, sterility, marriage,
    yellow           joy, happiness, optimism, idealism, imagination, hope, sunshine,                                  sun           air
    sky blue                                                                                                                                       Aquarius
    lavender                                                                                                                                       Pisces
    silver           removes negative power, victory, stability, gaining & development of talents,                                                 Cancer

    gray             security, reliability, intelligence, modesty, dignity, maturity, practical,
                     sadness, boring, old age
    dark green       problems in relationships or marriage (almost a black color)
    indigo           puts to good use the knowledge; stops gossip, neutralizes another's magic

    magenta          quick changes, spiritual healing, exorcism
    Numbers                              Symbolic Representation                              Planetary   Elemental   Astral
N                                                                                             Mate        Mate        Chart
U     0       undetermined being, potential, latent ideas, absence of all; ultimate mystery
M     1       ultimate unity, identity, equality, existence, conservation, general harmony,
              peace, tranquility, - one is a good principle.
B     2       contrasts, diversity, inequality, division, separation, disorder,
E             confusion, change; strong duality of Christ God and man,
R             polars,
      3       completeness, divinity, soul of the world, spirit of man, meditation,           Saturn
              atonement, mysteries beginning, middle, end; Trinity; birth, life,
S             death; three tries,
Y     4       earthly, physical things of creation, generating virtue, root of all things,
              gives human soul its eternal nature 4 elements, 4 stages of man, 4
M             directions, 4 corners of the world
B     S       divine grace; stops the power of points; redoubted by evil spirits 5            Mars
O             senses, 5 fingers, 5 toes, 5 wounds of Christ (head and 4 extremities);
      6       evil connotations, devil, ambivalence, total of labor; luck, chance,            sun
L             hours of day are divisions of 6,
I     7       spiritual perfection; power, belongs to sacred things, merges 3 & 4 7           Venus
              days for creation, 7 days of week, forgive 7 x 70, 7 colors of rainbow
S     8       resurrection; regeneration, new beginnings, commencement;                       Jupiter
M             baptismal font is 8-sided;
      9       the extent to which numbers should go; all numbers revolve around it;           moon
              sacred; cannot get rid of 9 - 9 x 1 = 9, 9 x 2 = 18 --1 + 8 = 9

      10      completeness; new commencement
      11      disorder; incompleteness
      12      government of God; cosmic order multiples of 12 occur in government, 12
              tribes of Israel, 12 months, 12 zodiac signs, 12 brothers of Joseph
      13      controlling or regulating; rebellion, 6th prime number, thus associated
              with the concept of the works of man without the completion of God
     14       same as 7; organization
     15       paganism, reduces to 6, thus indicative of a false system
     17       combination of spirit and order (10+7)
     25       grace intensified; 5 x 5
     666      mark of the beast, evil, cults
                                         DAYS OF THE WEEK SYMBOLISM


   Days of the                                          Symbolic Correspondences         Planetary   Elemental   Astral
      Week                                                                                 Mate        Mate      Chart
Sunday           power, magic, health, vitality, money, career
Monday           intuition, dreams, psychic ability, fertility
Tuesday          money, enemies, courage, energy
Wednesday        divination, communications, knowledge, wisdom
Thursday         happiness, luck, wealth, victory, health
Friday           love, romance, marriage, friendship
Saturday         psychic ability, communication, new beginnings, protection, bindings,

				
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