Symbolic Beetle Meaning
They're such unassuming little things, easily overlooked, unseen underfoot. Some of us pay them no mind other than uttering an occasional "eewwww!" when they catch our attention. Others of us pelt them with pesticides when they're pesky in the garden.
But what if the beetle were a representative of big juju, big power...even big spirituality. Would that make our encounters with them any less creepy, or frightening? I hope so. That's the reason for this article on symbolic beetle meaning. It's kind of like extending an olive branch on behalf of the beetle. Hopefully, learning about the secret symbolic life of the beetle might help those who are freaked out by them.
Getting acquainted with symbolic beetle meaning, requires exploration of the beetle realm. This, as it turns out, is a slippery wicket because the beetle is one of the most diverse orders (Coleoptera) of the animal kingdom, boasting 350,000+ species on record and counting. What's more, beetles are found almost everywhere in the world, they come in mind-boggling shapes, sizes, colors, reproduce in various different ways, have variable diets.... You get the idea - beetles are one of the most remarkably diverse segment on this planet.
With this much diversity, we might think synching with beetle symbolism could pose a challenge. Not so. Beetles have some common denominators, and when we tug on those common threads, we start to weave a dialogue that clarifies symbolic messages the beetle world sings to us. Here are some common symbolic highlights pertaining to beetles...
How'd I come up with this list? Here are some symbolic connections...
Specifically, strength that is unlikely, and underestimated. Have you ever had helpless thoughts like: "I have no influence or sway upon outcomes in life." Or, "I can't change the world - I'm just one person." The beetle has no truck for that kind of talk. Although they come in an infinite number of sizes, compared to people or elephants, beetles are mostly tiny creatures. Nevertheless, they are capable of moving mountains in their small worlds. To wit, the rhinoceros beetle can heft over 600 times its own weight. In human terms, this equates to someone like me lifting 60 some-odd tons! Furthermore, beetles build impressive cities (in bug-terms) and structures - all from their own grit. So the next time you're feeling small and ineffectual, consider the beetle as a symbol of strength - and all the unlikely feats this tiny creature can accomplish.
Yes, beetles are symbols of strength, but not just on a physical level. Part of the reason they can build such amazing colonies and structures in bug-land is due to their ability to organize within a community. When it comes to building bug utopia, it takes a village. A hefty lesson beetles offers is acquiring the ability to work with others for a common goal.
Everybody's got to eat sometime, and beetles are big eaters and most of what they eat is waste. This means big benefits for the whole planet. Think on it...the beetle population accounts for a quarter of the entire animal kingdom. With that kind of population mowing down on bi-products (waste in the form of carrion, feces, decay, etc) - us humans would be up to our eyeballs in some nasty doo-doo. In this light, beetle meaning deals with consumption in a beneficial way. So not only do we owe beetles a big "thank you" for their part in cleaning up the planet, we can also contemplate our own responsibility in purifying and recycling our bi-products of waste on this planet.
These core connections about beetle meanings, combined with their physical and environmental meanings can birth a profound symbolic language in our consciousness. For such little creatures, beetles carry big messages.
The following themes are germane to almost all beetles. The corresponding symbolism and message for each feature is also included...
Most members of the Coleoptera clan are earth-dwelling creatures, and that's a revealing clue in the hunt for beetle symbolism. The earth element is a grounding energy. When connecting with earth energy, we link up with things like:
To be true, it takes all elements to form life, but earth is the scaffolding. I mean, we wouldn't have life at all if we didn't have this precious planet. In bug-terms, this translates to foundations. When ground beetles cross our paths, and capture our attention, it's a sure sign to start an inner dialog about our own foundations.
The Greek etymology for the word beetle is koleos which means "sheath." This refers specifically to the sheathed wings sported by most beetles. As creatures of the air, we're dealing with symbolism of an ethereal nature. Unlike earth-based messages, beetles of the air are going to whizz around in our consciousness about things like:
Beetles flying in our consciousness will carry messages that directly influence areas in our lives that are not easily seen - things that are not rock-solid, and so these kinds of airy messages from the beetle realm will require a bit of self-investigation. Here are some points of contemplation when beetles fly around our awareness...
They're comprised of three parts (head, abdomen, thorax). There is a law of threes that goes something like: "whatever energy you put out into the environment will return to you threefold." In-step with beetle meaning of community, strength, recycling, spirituality...consider all these aspects, and contemplate what kind of vibes we are sending out within these symbolic beetle realms. What are we putting out into our community? If it's a crumby attitude, the rule of three suggests we'll reap some crumby stuff from our community. Are we mindful of your carbon footprints? If so, our conscientious efforts to purify the earth will be rewarded three-fold.
Beetle antennae are used for extrasensory perception - mostly for smell, but they're also used for mating rituals, defense tactics and feeling their way around in the world. Think about overlaying the use of antennae in your own world. Imagine you've got a pair, and do as the beetle does - sense your way around your environment. Make a meditation out of it. It's an uncanny experience to have a sixth sense by way of antennae. Beetle antennae are a symbolic prompt for us to expand our modes of sense perception in unique ways. Break out of common use of your five senses. Go beyond ordinary hearing, smelling, touching, tasting. We can do this by investing concentrated awareness into our senses. In other words, be mindful and in the present-moment when using sensory perception to consciously raise the bar on extrasensory perception.
They come in all shapes and sizes, and equally diverse is the array of colors found in the beetle world. When you encounter a beetle that grabs your attention, take note of its color. Color is a gateway to symbolic meaning and messages. Red for example is symbolic of love, energy, passion. Green means prosperity in areas of wealth and health. Interpreting color alone can be a catalyst for profound beetle medicine. So even if all these other points of symbolic reference to beetle meaning are overwhelming, just tapping into beetle color meaning can offer great insight. For help with this, find a complete list of color meanings here.
Perhaps the most profound lesson the beetle shares with us is the lesson of transformation and adaptation. Beetles engage in metamorphosis for development and growth. From egg to adult, they are a marvel of transformation illustrated in a short lifetime. They go through these revolutionary transformations with aplomb, very nonchalantly and matter-of-factly. Beetles embrace the flow of life and all its transitions without question. They surrender to change.
Arguably, humans may have a slightly more complex consciousness, and may take transformations into more detailed consideration than beetles do - but that doesn't negate their valuable tenet of surrendering to change. Beetles, in all their phases of metamorphosis, transition and even mimicry in nature are examples of moving with the natural rhythm of life rather than resisting it.
Furthermore, by interpreting beetle meaning we can learn how to release unhealthy attachment and identification with false reality. Beetles remind us of the importance of non-identification (ie: we are not our bodies, we are not our houses, we are not our cars). They teach us that change is inevitable, and surrender to that change allows for amazing liberation in life.
In summary, beetles are powerful little reminders of:
I hope this article on symbolic beetle meaning has offered you new perspectives and insights into this unlikely creature. I've written more about beetle symbolism on my blog. If you are interested in reading, you can check out Symbolic Beetle Meaning here. Thanks for reading!