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Signs and Symbols

Reading Signs, Understanding Symbols and Archetypes

Information comes to us in so many ways, some very subtle, as in symbols. Psychics are especially skilled at noticing and interpreting these gentle signals that appear in our lives. To be efficient and proficient in our work, we must also develop a broad understanding of the meaning of a great many signs, symbols and archetypes. an introduction…

A myriad of signs and symbols guide and direct our choices in every-day life. Whether we realize it or not, signs and symbols, even the archetypes, are one of the key ways that we are civilized, or conditioned to behave according to our community’s mores. As a species, no matter our race, culture, or religion, we are triggered to react in a specific way when we see certain signs and symbols. Some of this conditioning is universal and very useful – think of traffic signs and how they help to manage the flow of traffic – without them there would be chaos. Like traffic signs, when we are paying attention, signs and symbols guide us; they help us to make good choices, and to avoid chaos in our lives and in our worlds.

In esoteric wisdom, everything that exists first exists as a thought and a desire. To that extent, it follows that everything in life that has ever been given form (which is everything in the three dimensional world) is a sign or symbol of an intention. In that sense, not every sign or symbol is a call to action – sometimes a sign can be a message of the state or status of things, an affirmation of direction or purpose, or sometimes it can just be about showing you how you are tuning into all the various ways and means that energy forms itself and communicates its intentions.

Many of the meanings assigned to signs and symbols are universal languages of and in themselves, and therefore there are traditional interpretations. But remember, each of us is unique, some very specific signs and symbols are also unique, the meaning is “just for us”. My friend Mary-Anne gives us a terrific example:

“My grandmother has always had very vivid and precognitive dreams all of her life. For her, rolling green fields always represent the impending death of a relative. Dreams of these fields always brings news of a death to this family – she is rarely given to know who it is, just through the rolling green fields, she is given to know that someone will soon be passing over. It has not failed, even once in her 80 plus years.”

Talking about Signs

Signs, are usually (but not always) gentle and rarely invasive. By their very nature, they do not “demand” a response, or direct us to take action… through signs and symbols, we are given a “status report” or a suggestion to change our course. This is where our intuitive intelligence is most effective in understanding how to apply the message or meaning in the sign.

The events of 911 were a global sign- the archetypal Tower of the Tarot showing the entire world that it was time to change our ways. Sadly, despite the fact that this date has already been indelibly etched in most of our minds and hearts, we have yet to understand or to act on the true meaning of this incredible sign. This, like the true meaning of many signs, will not become obvious until we have the vantage point of distance, time, behind us. It is also true that we can instantly know the meaning of such a large sign as 9 11, but feel quite unable to determine an appropriate course of action. As an example, many people were able to instantly understand the magnitude of change the strikes of 9 11 implied and what it was really telling us… however as individuals, we had no idea what to do about what we knew.

Talking About Symbols

Symbols like numbers have become a language of their own… numbers overcome language barriers and are an essential element of our lives, no matter our race, culture or language… for example, everyone needs to understand the basic meaning of numbers in order to manage their personal affairs. The same applies to the letters of the alphabet, the names we have assigned to colors, and so many of the simplest symbols that populate our lives.

From the beginning of time we have assigned meaning – and symbols – to almost everything in our world. I think it all began when Adam first named the animals. It is said that he made his choices based on the energy that he felt from them, what he perceived as their purpose. That’s what symbols do for us – they tell us what a specific thing or event is about, what its purpose is, and often how to deal with it.

Most signs and symbols, like a stop sign, have a specific meaning, in a specific place. Others though, like a prophetic sign – have a much grander, or deeper meaning, depending on the context in which it appears. And symbols that appear in our dreams for example, or in a meditation, or a vision, or are repeated in our environments contain messages that can only be extracted through a deeper understanding of the signs and symbols.

Symbols often speak to, from and for our “other” intelligence systems, triggering recognition and action from our souls, our hearts and our emotional bodies. You could say that signs, symbols and archetypes are a way that our subconscious and our soul will communicate with us. And so, it follows that our intuition plays an important role both in noticing and interpreting signs, symbols and archetypes.

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Signs, Symbols, What’s the Difference?

Information comes to us in so many ways, some very subtle, as in symbols. Psychics are especially skilled at noticing and interpreting these gentle signals that appear in our lives. To be efficient and proficient in our work, we must also develop a broad understanding of the meaning of a great many signs, symbols and archetypes.

Through the ages, the prophets have read the “signs” to warn us of things to come and the consequences of certain actions. For a long while it was the role of the Shaman, the High Priests and Priestesses, the Oracles of each community, to interpret the signs as they manifested. In the earliest days of our civilization, we assigned a lot of strange meanings – superstitions – to certain signs. Until the scientists, first the astronomers and then the mathematicians, got into the act and began to actually validate some of these signs, to give them more meaning and relevance. Now that we understand the energy contained in some of these signs – like those that appear in the heavens, we can predict how these events may impact us, and to work with the energy flowing to improve our decision-making.

We have been creating symbols since the beginning of time and now more than ever before, a person must have an understanding of a wide variety of symbolic languages. Anyone who spends much time in in a chat room has discovered the value of learning the lingo there. Almost every discipline, whether it is law, medicine, finance or music has its own set of symbols that must be learned. Yet few of us have stopped to think that numbers we see around us every day have a symbolic meaning, as do shapes and colours, and as does every element of nature.

Yet, understanding the signs and symbols can help you to improve your decision-making abilities… and making better choices translates into feeling good about yourself and your life… Reading the signs, learning to understand the symbols can have real value in your life!.

While some signs are also symbols and other signs are derived from the symbolic meanings of an event or thing, some symbols also act as signs. Let me explain.

Signs are typically seen in the broader picture, as in omens, augers, memes. Astrology can be a source of some of these signs – a Grand Cross in the sky, for example, acts as a sign of things to come – as does an eclipse. Interesting – we had some pretty intense astrological signs in the skies for the two years prior to 911. We derive most of our understanding of “signs” from the observation of repeated patterns and their consequences or subsequent events.

Symbols become signs when they are repeated. Seeing a certain series of numbers come up repeatedly around you is a sure sign that spirit is communicating something to you. Knowing the meaning of these numbers enables you to respond to your world more effectively, to more consciously direct the energy in the ways that you wish.

I would hasten to add here that a series of numbers, for example, may not mean much translated strictly from basic numerological meanings. Our inner or intuitive sense does operate in a very personal way. For example, someone coming across the number 3 endlessly may find that the basic numerological interpretation fits with what is going on for them (an enjoyable time maybe) OR – it could be appearing as a response to a question one has been pondering or meditating on. Pretend you were focussing your inner self on the issue of how many children you will have. The focus, purely directed, will produce “answers everywhere” and in this example, that number could be interpreted to be the answer is 3.

Black cats – or any animal, insect or bird – on their own have a symbolic meaning, but when they cross your path, it can be a sign. Again, when you know the symbolic meaning of the creature, you can be prepared for the event that its appearance signifies. And when you know yourself and what certain symbols tend to mean for you specifically, you will be able to identify with even greater accuracy exactly how you should respond to the symbol’s appearance.

Understanding the signs and symbols is very useful for communicating with spirit, whether this is with your higher self, or an entity from another dimension. We communicate in signs, so everything about a paranormal experience, whether this is a dream, or a visit from a spirit, becomes meaningful – part of the message. Taking time to interpret the message gives you a chance to make a wiser decision, to notice where corrections are needed in order for you to achieve your goals.

My friend, Mary-Anne provides us with some meaningful examples. “The recent death of a close family member was full of signs and symbols, although not necessarily easy to interpret. A clock battery in my home needed to be changed. I changed it. The clock, for no apparent reason suddenly stopped on a Saturday night. The next day, I received a phone call telling me of the sudden death of this person and once the news was received, the clock started again – just like that. The odd part was that when it stopped and I noticed it had stopped, I had the conscious thought “I wonder if someone died”. In the same week, just after the funeral, a candle spontaneously re-lit itself as we were making our way back to the house. The flickering flame made it easy for me to know that the spirit of our loved one was letting us know he was around. Candle and electrical manipulations are some very easy ways for spirits, or our dear departed, to send us signs that they are around. In the same evening, the television set, without any interference, suddenly turned itself off. We all got that message as the fellow who had passed on, in life, would have shut the thing off to tell us enough of that noise!

Another example of an interesting little sign occured in the popular television show, “The Bachelorette”. The lady choosing from the 25 eligible men was on a date with a fellow early in the process. They came across three different wedding ceremonies taking place. They joked at that point about it being a sign, although there were still many men left for this lady to choose from. In the end, she did choose the fellow with whom she had seen the weddings and from all reports to date, they are very much in love and now married.

What’s an Archetype?

Carl Jung was the first to specifically define the concept of archetypes and what they mean in our lives, but the archetypes – whether these represent specific characters in life, or specific events, have also been with us since the beginning of time. Mythology is filled with life’s archetypal characters and events. Therefore, to understand the archetypes, it is useful to have some understanding of mythology, the Gods and Goddesses. The Major Arcana of the Tarot is an excellent source of understanding of the significant archetypes in our lives. And anyone who has studied the theater has also learned a great many different archetypal characters and events.

Some theorize that a basic understanding of archetypes, signs and symbols is embedded in our genetic codes, a part of our soul consciousness. We have used the stars, the weather, the appearances of various animals or the odd shapes or unusual objects or occurrences in our lives as methods of predicting what will come from the beginning of time. North Americans who honour Ground Hog Day in February every year are honouring these old superstitions – a way we celebrate these old beliefs…

Although it is also said that human beings will seek meaning in neutral events – if there are really no coincidences in this world, then all that crosses our paths can be interpreted as a sign or symbol.

Pay attention, spirit communicates with us in many ways – understanding the meaning of the signs, symbols, and archetypes enables you to glean a great deal of information about your world – but it is up to you to first notice the signs – and then to take time to interpret their meanings and notice how these apply to your life in the moment, and in the future.

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Useful Links — the world’s largest online encyclopedia of graphic symbols!
Hobo Signs & Symbols
Online Lingo A Computer and Internet Dictionary of Symbols
Signs and Symbols – dream symbols
Astro Awareness – Dictionary of signs and symbols
Archetypes As Defined By Carl Jung
Archetypes – Blueprints – Symbols
Dictionary of Symbolism
Animal Symbolism
Dream Symbols
Sacred Geometry
God’s Explanation of Bible Symbolism


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