Horseshoe Crab Meaning and Symbolism
A Question About Horseshoe Crab Meaning: This article is written in response to a question received about the horseshoe crab. The following is is a question from Stephanie:
“Hi Avia, Can you write information on the symbolism of the horseshoe crab? I can’t find much online by searching except scientific information.
Somehow mixing crab and horseshoe symbolism doesn’t seem to do this ancient creature justice.
I saw one while camping with friends at a beach, it was a foot across! This was during the super moon of the summer solstice last year, which is also my birthday. I feel there is a strong message I can’t find any clarity with, please help!
Thank you for any information you can provide. Sincerely, Stephanie”
Avia’s Response to
“Symbolic Horseshoe Crab Meaning”
Thanks for your interest and inquiry about symbolic horseshoe crab meaning.
I actually have a bit of history with this keen creature too. When I was a kid, I used to visit my aunts at Galveston Beach off the Gulf of Mexico in Texas. Horseshoe crabs were strewn along the beach during full and new moons. I was utterly enchanted by them.
All crabs, including horseshoe crabs, are influenced by the moon. This is symbolic. The moon persuades every living thing – but not all living things set their watch by the wax and wane. Horseshoe crabs do. They choose their birthing time at new and full moons in late spring, early summer. This is symbolic of fertility, growth, and the magic of life. It is also a tremendously feminine theme. The moon is very yin (feminine) energy. Female horseshoes honor the divine feminine by birthing while bathed in Lady Luna’s light.
Female horseshoes are also larger than their male counterparts. This is unusual. Typically males are the bigger, stronger ilk within Nature. I rather like the idea that the female’s larger size is a “hat’s off” to feminine power and strength. So, when you see a female horseshoe crab, it’s a great opportunity to contemplate the beauty of: Motherhood, Womanhood, and that life-giving essence of the Divine Feminine.
That horseshoe shape is reminiscent of lunar symbolism too. Native American’s observed the curve of their shell and attributed this crab to be a sacred symbol of the moon. As a result, this crab was honored during full and new moons. Native American’s observed the horseshoe for climate changes, and forecasting fishing conditions. As a symbolic parallel, we can do the same in our modern-day lives.
Horseshoe crab meaning is about paying attention, and getting in-tune with our environment. When this sweet beastie enters your consciousness, give pause – pay attention to the rhythms of life – the cycles of time – the churn of Nature. At the very least, have a cup of tea, and bask in the wonder of Nature and all her glory.
A little research will tell you the horseshoe crab isn’t really a crab. It’s lineage is linked more to spiders, ticks and scorpions. These are all extraordinarily opportunistic critters, and so is the horseshoe. Horseshoe crab meaning is all about possibility and opportunity. This crab encourages us to take advantage of the present moment, and the resources at hand (or claw, as it were, lol).
We could say the horseshoe crab is royalty…after all, it does have blue blood. Yep. We humans have red blood due to iron present in our bloodlines, whereas the crab has copper.
Copper is highly symbolic. It is an element sacred to Venus, the goddess of love. As such, copper (and horseshoe crab meaning) is linked with qualities such as: Beauty, Love, Femininity, Passion, Fertility, Desire, Creativity and Balance. Who knew!?!
Copper was also used by the Ancients to make mirrors – which is another symbolic connection to the moon (mirrors and the moon are synonymous in archetypal symbology). Mirrors are also associated with another magical creature of the sea…mermaids. Pretty cool, eh?
So, all this feminine symbolism is counterbalanced with the rock-hard exoskeleton of the horseshoe crab. This hard exterior is super-symbolic when juxtaposed such soft femininity.
With a mixture of moon, copper, feminine and that hard exoskeleton…we start to get a symbolic-horseshoe-crab-dialog that says something like…
That’s a fabulous message for women and men alike, isn’t it!? This is about being aware of our inner tenderness, our innate beauty…and encapsulateourselves in a layer of tough power.
Although I’m sure men can appreciate this in their own lives…I think the symbolic message is more profound for women. It’s all about balance (as Venus would have it). It’s about being utterly lovely, but uber-powerful too. It’s about harmonizing soft vs. strong.
Well, Stephanie, these are just a few thoughts about symbolic horseshoe crab meaning. I hope this helps you on your journey to greater symbolic understanding. Be sure to check out the links below for more relevant articles.
Bright Horseshoe Crab Blessings to You,
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