Sapere Aude: What Does it Mean? Why is it Important?
When I adopted the phrase sapere aude 13 years ago as the motto for whats-your-sign.com, I thought I was being very clever.
I thought I was the first one to use this bold, Latin phrase.
Nope. The Roman philosopher Horace uttered it before me, followed by the German philosopher Immanuel Kant, and probably countless others.
Sapere Aude is Latin. Depending upon the source you consult, the phrase has varying degrees of meaning. In essence it says: “Dare to know.” My high school Latin teacher of 3 years told me it meant “Dare to discern”…so I’m sticking with that. At the end of the day, this phrase expresses what I am constantly urging folks to do…and that is think for themselves.
I hammer this idea pretty hard on my website, because it is crucial to interpret symbolic phenomenon according to your own reasoning and impulses. Don’t take my word for it! My years of work interpreting signs and symbolism is simply one drop in an ocean of perspectives, meanings and opinions.
Sure…there are some meanings that are pretty ubiquitous…but even then there is an inevitable contradiction in meaning depending on which era or culture you consult. My articles are meant to inspire you and others to think and feel more deeply about the signs that snatch your attention. But always…YOU have the ultimate answers…dare to discern!
“Being your true self can only come from separating your thinking from crowd mentality.”~Edmond Mbiaka
An Additional Note About Sign and Symbol Meanings
Signs and symbols cultivate their meanings according to culture, context, passage of time in society as well as mass societal opinion. What’s cool and highly important is that signs and symbols earn their most powerful meanings from our own personal perspectives.
This website strives to provide you with the best, time-honored information when defining signs and symbols. However, in the final analysis, “Beauty (and symbolism) is in the eye of the beholder.”
Having said that, it’s in our best interest to invest the time to do personal research on symbolic events happening to us. This website is just one perspective in an ocean of variety and diversity in the realm of symbolism. So dive in! There is a whole universe of deeper meanings to explore! You can start your research by clicking on the links at the end or to the side of this page. Odds are good I’ve got a follow-up article about this symbolic topic. 😉
As always, thanks for your willingness to learn more about the language of symbolism. It’s a language that is universal and everywhere. It’s super-groovy to travel with you on your symbolic path, and maybe offer a little translation along the way. Thanks for reading and exploring! And remember – sapere aude – dare to discern!
Other Articles of Interest on This Site
Symbolic Meaning of Choice
Have you ever considered your choices are symbolic? I think they are, and that’s why I wrote this article on the symbolic meaning of choice. What if we can dig deeper into the meaning of our choices and get hard-core guidance from our findings? Check it out, I think you’ll be intrigued. Find out more about the symbolic meaning of choice here.
Interpreting Symbolic Meanings for Guidance
This article on using symbolism for guidance is a starting point-of-reference as you move through the symbolic pages on this website. It explains, very simply, how interpreting symbolism in our lives can lead to real, solid guidance. Get more about symbolism for guidance here.
Symbolism is an interactive practice and requires discernment. Whereas superstition is based on irrational assumptions. Get more about superstition vs symbolism and why it’s a pretty big deal here.