Speaking in Symbols

Learning the language of the subconcious

Archive for the category “subconcious”

The Sow, The Horse, and the Butterfly, Pt 2

During a recent meditative session, I had the image of a sow, a black horse, and a brown butterfly come to mind in succession.  I’ve found all of these images fascinating, though I’ve had a hard time coming up with a connection. Perhaps they are all symbols that I need to consider individually.

For several days now, I have also tried to combine all three images into one big blog post, with little success. I’ve made a decision, then, to write separate posts for each animal.

The Black Horse:

Black-Horse-RunningThe horse seems to be the polar opposite of the sow–it is a masculine symbol, while the sow is feminine. The horse’s power and worth come in his ability to move, while the sow’s worth comes in her flesh, her piglets, and her staying close to the farm.

With the image of the pig, it was the sex and reproductive status that was important–I saw a sow, a female pig that has given birth. With the horse, it was the color that was important–I saw a black horse without star or stocking.

The color black indicates something hidden, a mystery. Black represents death in the west, and life in some parts of the east. I have found reference to a black horse as being symbolic of a power that a person doesn’t know that they have.

Among the four horsemen of the Apocalypse, it is Famine that rides a black horse. This brings in another contrast to the symbol of the sow–famine versus prosperity.

As I’ve been thinking about the sow, the horse and the butterfly, I realized that none of these animals is better than the others. They all serve very different purposes, and fill different niches. They, and the different parts of my psyche that they represent) could exist without each other, and be none the worse for it.  Still, there is a reason they’ve been grouped together for me. The trick is to find out why.

 

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Winds

Even though I’ve not been at this for very long, I’ve had several experiences where my subconscious brain sends me an image, feeling or intuition that completely takes me by surprise. I’ve learned not to ignore these archetypes, they tend to be important, even if their meaning isn’t intuitively obvious.

windThis image is one that took me completely by surprise. What came to mind was a the figure of a human–probably a woman–moving quickly through a dark forest. She was wrapped, and draped, in a sheer, white fabric that trailed behind her.

The image of wings that morphed into a set of lungs also came to me during the meditative session which gave me this image. I didn’t connect the two, at first, but it didn’t take long to bring them together. The instinct I got about this image (after the “what was THAT?!” moment had passed) was that it represented the wind.  And while I explored other explanations, like ghost or spirit, wind seems to fit the best.

WindmillWind is all about air, movement and travel. Wind is created from conflict, when two bodies of air of different temperatures collide. In the past, we harnessed the wind to power great sailing ships, and to grind our grain. Today, wind is created with the movement of airplanes, and we use it to generate electricity. It is an element of power, though unseen. It is a harbinger of change, like the winds that come before a thunderstorm, or Mary Poppins promising to stay only until the wind changes. Likewise, it can also foretell disaster–the phrase “an ill wind” comes to mind. We saying someone who doesn’t know what their talking about is “full of hot air”. Am I expressing doubts about this blog?

bullyIn her archetype cards, Caroline Myss connected an image of wind to the archetype of bully. This has never been an archetypal trait that I’ve associated with myself, though, the artwork has always given me reason to pause as I go though the deck, and the more I think about it, the more convinced I become that the archetype of the bully is being brought forward, if not to center stage.

If I am being a bully, it is towards myself. I’m not sure if it is the nature of human beings, or only those of us with chronic depression, but I know that I say and do things to myself that I would never dream of saying or doing to another person. By connecting the bully to the image of the woman in the woods, I find myself being reminded to be more gentle and kind to myself.

ForestThe setting of the original image seems important, too. Dark and forest are both feminine attributes, that represent what is hidden, what it unseen. For me, darkness is empty and void, but the forest is full of life.  Forests are places of mystery and magic, the setting of many fairy tales and European legends.

Forests represent the unconscious mind. Adding the darkness to that intensifies the symbolism for me. There is something in my subconscious that needs to be swept up, like Dorothy in a tornado. Something is changing, something needful.

 

 

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