What Does A Rabbit Tattoo Mean?
Rabbit tattoos are often used as good luck charms, totems of wealth and abundance, as well as commemorations to the wearer’s love of the natural world. Thanks to its global distribution, a rabbit tattoo has symbolic meaning linked to fertility, physical prowess, and the manifestation of the divine in nature.
- 1 What does white rabbit mean?
- 2 What do animals symbolize in tattoos?
- 3 What is the meaning behind a butterfly tattoo?
- 4 What rabbits mean spiritually?
- 5 What drug is the White Rabbit?
- 6 What does a rabbit head tattoo mean?
- 7 What is the most popular animal tattoo?
- 8 What does a tattoo on ring finger mean?
- 9 What does it mean when a rabbit visits you?
What do rabbits symbolize?
Rabbit symbolism and meaning – The rabbit can symbolize many aspects of life, both negative and positive, according to different cultures. Its primal meanings are of fear, sexuality, abundance and prosperity, good luck, intuition, spontaneity, wittiness, and many more.
- Although it is a defenseless and harmless animal, with many predators on its tail, it manages successfully to avoid danger thanks to its speed and intelligent nature;
- Rabbits remind us of our vulnerability and push us to find the strength within ourselves;
Because of its nocturnal lifestyle, the rabbit was linked to the Moon and the idea of rebirth as well as being a mythical creature with magical powers. It has many connections through various cultures with several deities. An example is the sacred rabbit of Hermes as his speedy messenger. The rabbit was portrayed as a symbol to identify certain tribes and was also used by the Chinese Emperor as a sign of their house. It’s meaning was of longevity by it’s connection to the Moon.
What does white rabbit mean?
white rabbit in British English (waɪt ˈræbɪt ) noun. a person who is in a hurry and complaining of being late, like the White Rabbit character in the children’s story ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ by Lewis Carroll. He was late, damnably late!.
What do animals symbolize in tattoos?
The reason people get animal tattoos is quite straightforward. They do it because a certain animal carries meaning and symbolism close and relatable to the owner of the tattoo. This has been a common practice in the tattoo community for years. Even the people of ancient civilizations believed in animal symbolism or animism.
This originated from the belief that people and animals are spiritually connected and that animals can helps humans in their spirituality and physical or spiritual life. So, if you’re looking to get a cool animal tattoo that carries meaning and symbolism close to you, then you’re at the right place.
In the following paragraphs, we’ll look into some of the most common animal tattoos and explore what is their spiritual and cultural meaning. Hopefully, this will help you make the right choice! So, without further ado, let’s get started!.
What is the meaning behind a butterfly tattoo?
Conclusion – The butterfly is one amazing creature and we have been inspired by it for centuries. It symbolizes many things including freedom, soul, love, grace, transformation, and rebirth. For these reasons, it has also become one of the most popular tattoos for women around the world, though it is sometimes used by men as part of larger tattoo designs and to convey meaning. Whether you feel some profound connection to the butterfly as a transformative motif , have a spiritual connection to it, or simply love the grace, dignity, and beauty of the creature, there is no doubt that a butterfly tattoo can be an eye-catching motif.
- Dragonfly Tattoo Inspiration
- What Do Phoenix Tattoos Symbolize?
- Small Insect Tattoos And Their Meanings
What rabbits mean spiritually?
Rabbit symbolism and meanings include sensitivity, gentleness, fertility, haste, new beginnings, the moon, and good luck. Rabbits live on every continent except Antarctica, so they appear in the mythologies and folklore of cultures around the world. In this post, you’ll learn about rabbit symbols and meanings, including bunnies and hares. Plus, you’ll learn about rabbit and hare mythology and folklore, the rabbit spirit animal, and more. .
Do rabbits have a spiritual meaning?
Since the dawn of time, there is a belief that animals are associated with divine spirits. In polytheistic religions, every God had his totem animal which had great powers. Animals were considered powerful omens and their messages shouldn’t be ignored. If you’re encountering rabbit often you’re probably wondering what does it mean when you see a rabbit? According to different cultures, seeing rabbits can symbolize many aspects of life, both negative and positive.
Its primal meanings are fear, sexuality, abundance, and prosperity. Besides those meanings rabbit is associated with good luck, intuition, spontaneity, wittiness, and many more. If you want to know more about this extraordinary spirit animal this short article will be helpful.
After reading it you’ll find out what does it mean when you see a rabbit in different situations. Hopefully, you’ll have a better understanding of the spiritual significance of this marvelous creature. No time to read? Watch the “What does it mean when you see a rabbit” video instead.
What drug is the White Rabbit?
White Rabbit — Jefferson Airplane’s track was inspired by Miles Davis, Lewis Carroll — and LSD.
What does a black rabbit represent?
Conclusion – Black rabbits are considered generally to be a bad omen. They symbolize fear, cowardice, silence, witchcraft and helplessness. If you see a rabbit in a dream, it is likely for a reason. You may need to face a fear or vulnerability head on. If you need help, don’t be afraid to ask for it. I’m Chris and I run this website – a resource about symbolism, metaphors, idioms, and a whole lot more! Thanks for dropping by..
What does a rabbit head tattoo mean?
Rabbit tattoos are often used as good luck charms, totems of wealth and abundance, as well as commemorations to the wearer’s love of the natural world. Thanks to its global distribution, a rabbit tattoo has symbolic meaning linked to fertility, physical prowess, and the manifestation of the divine in nature.
What is the most popular animal tattoo?
What animal tattoo means strength?
Guest post in collaboration with Gladys Geetha We’re pleased to host this blog written in collaboration with Gladys, a Reiki Grandmaster and Tarot reader, and an expert on animal meanings and symbolism! Gladys began her journey into spirituality nearly two decades ago in Dubai and has since gone on to educate herself in various modalities, including animism, an ancient religious and spiritual belief that all things — including animals, plants, rocks and mountains, words, and even objects — are ‘animated’ and thus alive, each possessing its own spiritual essence. In modern spirituality, animism is frequently used to interpret meanings and messages that come to us in the form of animals. In this post, Gladys introduces the basics of animal symbolism to us — and gives us a glimpse into what these animal mean as tattoos ! Be sure to check out Gladys’ other work on her site Reiki With Friends.
- Animism has its roots in the most ancient tribal and indigenous populations, who prior to modern day religion found meaning and purpose in the world around them;
- Most of these cultures also practised ancient forms of body art, including tribal tattooing;
Of all these cultures, Native American animism tends to be one of the most popular. Totems, as per Native American beliefs, are spiritual beings or sacred objects and symbols of an individual or their tribe, and each person is said to have nine different animal spirits that act as guides throughout their life.
Similar forms of animism can be observed in ancient cultures across the globe, such as the Mun religion of the Lepcha people of Sikkim, India. Each animal has a meaning, which means it can be difficult finding the one that’s right for you or that truly represents you.
To make things a little easier, we asked animal meanings expert Gladys to tell us what over 40 animals represent. Let us help you find your perfect tattoo ! Animals from the jungles and forests instantly bring out the fear in us. They are known to be extremely strong, ferocious, and often quite fast. They emphasize our ability to master our emotions and know when to get serious — and when to have a little fun! Realism more your style? Book your tattoo appointment with Aliens Tattoos now! With a roar that can shake the earth, the tiger is an impressive creature that makes its presence known — and heard! Tigers can mean anything from danger and vengeance to power and strength to being a free spirit. Much like the lion, a tiger represents the ability to manage strong emotions more effectively. But the symbolism behind tigers has a long and diverse history ! Read: Tiger Tattoos and their Meanings The fastest animal on the planet, cheetahs are a reminder to remain focused — know your goals, keep your eye on the prize, and charge — full speed ahead! The most common image of apes is that they’re aggressive — no doubt the image of a silverback charging at you is bound to scare anyone! But there’s another side to them — they are extremely caring and compassionate and display amazing selflessness, both towards their fellow apes as well as to outsiders they don’t view as a threat. Chimps are especially known for being playful — and they are quite mischievous too! In South Asian cultures, the immortal being Hanuman is depicted as being half-man, half-ape, and symbolizes resistance to persecution. Hanuman features prominently in many other Asian styles of tattooing as well. Beyond their aggressiveness, the majestic apes also stand for leadership, dignity, and loyalty. Book an appointment with Skin Pricks now and get a gorgeous ape tattoo of your own! The deer is a symbol of power to Native American tribes, signifying intuition combined with sensitivity and gentleness. Want a geometric deer tattoo? Check out Starline ! Have sketch-style deers taken your fancy? Get one at Ancient Tattoo Studio today! Get yourself a magical landscape deer tattoo from Verve ! The deer teaches us to be calm but determined, and reminds us that there is great power in peace, and great healing in compassion — especially when we show some to ourselves! Bears are a symbol of strength and confidence, as well as of solitude, quiet, and rest. Known to be fiercely protective, they are not unlike elephants in their ability to be just as ferocious as they are loving. Not all animals are terrifying, ferocious, and deadly! There are some animals that were bred to be our friends, who accompany us through life — including all its ups and downs! Dogs are the best companions and friends — loyal, trustworthy, brave, protective, devoted. They teach us to be non-judgemental. Visit Sculp and get yourself a pet tattoo with a customized design! With dogs, each breed has its own meaning and symbolism. For instance, Labradors symbolize unconditional acceptance, Corgis symbolize being protective and loyal to one’s ‘herd’, and Great Danes symbolize being easy-going and strong-willed — and to never let anyone walk all over you! Dogs are a great reminder to love unconditionally and faithfully, and to never lose your childish wonder no matter what happens! Want a colourful portrait tattoo of your puppy? Check out Verve ! Cats — as their nine lives tell us — are a symbol of rebirth. They are associated with night, darkness, and magic. In ancient Egypt, cats were revered as deities and would receive a royal burial. Many ancient gods were also depicted as cats. Get yourself an adorable cat tattoo from Funky Fuze Tattoo Studio ! Cats are curious and playful, but they can be quite terrifying if they’re crossed! Overall, cats have a very clear message — live proud and free! In China, the panda is an auspicious symbol said to bring luck and prosperity. Even though they are actually quite strong, it is difficult to imagine being attacked by a panda! They symbolize gentle strength — the ability to be wise in how one uses their power. These adorable fluffy bears live in peace and harmony, enjoying a quiet life among friends and family. The phrase ‘beasts of burden’ is often used to refer to animals that carry rather heavy loads, usually in service to farmers and builders. While many see them as helping hands, we must always acknowledge how important their presence is to us — after all, without them, we would have never been able to build our towns and cities! As the symbol of Aries, rams denote strength, pride, drive, and determination.
- Yet each one of these frightening beasts has a kind and compassionate side;
- It is this side that gives us a glimpse into what these animals symbolize! Lions represent raw power and aggression, but there’s another side to them — they’re also playful, and sometimes quite lazy! Want a watercolour lion of your own? Visit Tattoo Trends and book your appointment today! Lions are all about self-control;
Rams also symbolize initiative and leadership. In some cultures, they are a symbol of protection. Rams are also considered a symbol of divinity. Mythological horned gods are always depicted as warriors, as ram horns are a sign of strength and aggressiveness — or put another way, passion! Is it divinity or strength that inspires you? Get inked with a customized tattoo of a ram with InkOverMatter ! Known for their great strength and power, bulls are protectors and associated with the wealth of the land. They’re a sign to be assertive and stand your ground — especially when in doubt! Bulls teach us to never let others question what we believe in. Bulls are the symbol of Taurus, the zodiac that thrives on being practical and grounded. Bulls, thus, also represent being realistic and committed — which can sometimes mean being quite stubborn! Put another way, however, bulls are also a symbol of being reliable and consistent. Horses symbolize true freedom as they live unrestrained, free to move as they please. In Native American symbolism, horses represent power, likely owing to the sheer strength of a mustang from the wild. But horses also symbolize a different kind of power — personal power. After all, a true free spirit has no one to hold them back. Learning to master oneself is the greatest struggle — and the greatest triumph! Gentle, wise, nurturing — elephants are emotional and loving animals who care deeply for their herd. Never get in between a mother and her baby elephant though — elephants also symbolize power and strength, and this gentle and majestic creature will charge at you with a vengeance if she views you as a threat! Get yourself a tattoo you’ll love forever! Visit Aatman today! In Eastern and Native American tribes, elephants also represent luck. Elephant tattoos can thus have a variety of meanings! Some animals bring with them a sense of magic and mystery — it’s just in their nature! Since ancient times, these animals have been thought to represent everything from death and the afterlife to parallel universes and sight beyond sight! Wolves are intelligent creatures with amazing intuition. Get a magical wolf inked at Aatman ! Book now! A wolf’s howl is one of the most haunting sounds of the night. The howl of a wolf is how it calls to its pack. The howl of a lone wolf, however, is as a warning to all — wolf or human — that dares to trespass on its territory! Wolves are a reminder to stay true to who you are — whether you’re in a pack or riding solo. Get in touch with The Pumpkin Patch at pumpkinpatchtattoos@gmail. com to make booking enquiries. While the Chinese thought of foxes as a sign from departed loved ones, Celtic lore views foxes as a symbol of guidance and wisdom. Modern symbolism views the fox as cunning. In reality, foxes are actually extremely clever and resourceful. They are also curious and playful! Known for their quick thinking, foxes teach us to always be alert! They may be small, but when they show up these animals come with some very important messages! Read on to find out what these tiny animals — and the small animal tattoos they feature in! — represent. Dragonflies are known for being resplendent and absolutely stunning. And why wouldn’t they — they are all about being a free spirit! They symbolize change — from mental and emotional to physical — and are a sign that things are about to shift. A dragonfly tattoo is a great way to remind yourself that life is a wild ride! These beautiful creatures teach us to always be open to change. Butterflies come in so many colours, it’s hard not to smile when we see one gently flit past! Butterflies represent change and joy. Many associate the butterfly with transformation — nothing says a new you quite like a caterpillar that can go into a cocoon and emerge as an entirely new creature! Mark your transformation with a customized butterfly tattoo from Sculp ! In addition to change, butterflies also represent luck, which makes them perfect for a tattoo that is meant to represent a new phase of your life. This might be why they’re so popular around New Year! Moths are known to be nocturnal, yet for some unexplained reason, they are drawn to light! These ancient little creatures are thought to be in tune with nature and use the moonlight to navigate their flight. Moths symbolize determination and faith, but more than anything, they are a reminder to never stop searching for the light in the dark. They also, however, remind us to know our path. Follow the light, but make sure you don’t get burned! Crabs are the symbol of the Cancer zodiac sign. They represent emotion and intuitiveness, as well as loyalty and deep attachments. Chinese symbolism links crabs to success and high status because of the Chinese word for crab shell ‘jia’ which means ‘first’ and is associated with getting first place in the Chinese Imperial Examinations. Get a crab tattoo of your own at Sculpture Tattoos ! If you need a reminder to be ambitious and aim high, then a crab tattoo might just be for you! They also, however, serve as a reminder that sometimes you need to loosen your grip and change your path — so listen to your heart when making a choice. Scorpions are often thought to symbolize danger due to the painful sting they inflict on anyone they view as a threat. As the symbol of Scorpios, these little crustaceans represent passion and assertiveness. They also represent resourcefulness and a quest for truth. Ancient Egyptians, however, revered the scorpion as a protector of souls that are crossing over into the afterlife. Scorpions are also associated with spiritual change and growth, as many ancient societies believed the scorpion’s sting had the power to heal and cause a person to transcend reality and receive prophetic visions. Lizards symbolize regeneration and are a message that you can overcome anything. A fun fact about lizards is that they shed their tails when distressed and are capable of regrowing it later on! Lizards, thus, are a symbol of growth — of shedding extra baggage when it does not serve you and becoming a better version of yourself! Spiders are often scary to most people — there’s even a whole section of phobias dedicated to it! This is probably why they feature prominently in horror and blackwork tattoos. But spiders are more than just scary! They are master weavers. The webs they weave are very difficult to break or remove, indicating this is a creature that has mastered its craft. Spiders, thus, represent finding your purpose and mastering the skills you need to accomplish it. Animals have a prominent place in mythology. Of all creatures, some have been exceptionally valuable to telling the tales of our ancestors. Their symbolism and presence in ancient texts tell us a lot about where we come from and why we hold the beliefs we do. Snakes are thought of as earthy creatures due to their nature of slithering along the ground. Historically thought of as a creative force, snakes also symbolize transformation and immortality because they routinely shed their skin and emerge, almost as good as new! Snakes are also important to many religions and ancient cultures, who viewed them as both terrifying, destructive forces and deities that bestowed blessings. Ancient snakes were, after all, what modern tales of dragons are based on! Cobras are seen as deadly, but they have historically been associated with deep spirituality and royalty. Ancient Egyptians saw them as magical creatures full of wisdom, often using cobra imagery in the Pharoah’s crown. They even had a Cobra Goddess named Wadjet! She was a protective force whose presence indicated the king’s reign over all of Egypt. In South Asia, the cobra is often associated with Lord Shiva. While many tales are told about this association, some point out that the serpent is highly sensitive to human emotion — particularly fear — and if a serpent is calm around you, it indicates you are totally at ease and are thus able to perceive everything with a clear mind. Prior to more modern depictions, dragons were depicted as serpents and revered and feared in equal measure as deities and ferocious beasts. They were thought to be forces of protection as well as monsters that caused destruction. In current folklore and fantasy, dragons are often associated with East Asian mythology. The dragon is an important symbol in Feng Shui, representing fortune and growth as well as authority and the ability to rise above one’s circumstances. Read: Dragon Tattoos and their Meanings The dinosaurs may be extinct, but they live on in our minds — and in ink! They symbolize strength and nobility, as well as change and the ability to let go and move on from the past. The mighty dinosaurs teach us to focus on here and now — because it’s all we have! Water is the element of healing, of flowing with life and finding growth in moving forward. With fish and all other creatures of the deep sea, we find meaning that speaks to our souls on a much deeper level. Hailing from Japanese culture, the koi fish symbolizes overcoming adversity — which might be why it’s such a popular choice for cover up tattoos! Want an Irezumi-style koi fish tattoo? Birthmark Tattoos n Customs is what you’re looking for! The koi fish is a reminder to have courage as you strive to reach your goals. It is symbolic of patience, determination, ambition, and success. If this blackwork back tattoo is your style, check out Tattoo Sutra ! Native Americans believed the lunar eclipse was caused by a codfish trying to swallow the moon. Due to its importance to trade the codfish is seen as a symbol of wealth and prosperity. While it is sometimes associated with sainthood, the cod is at other times seen as a symbol of lust and evil! At its core, however, the codfish represents something very important — mindful independence. Turtles tell us that patience, dedication, and perseverance can help you achieve anything. Turtles stand for longevity and endurance, with some species of turtles being known to live for hundreds of years! Tribal animal tattoos often feature turtles because of the depth of meaning these animals represent! Visit Avatar Tattoo and get inked with a minimalist tribal turtle tattoo of your own! Celtic symbolism views the shark as a symbol of prosperity due to the association of its dorsal fin with the sacred sickle of the Druids, and it was thought to bring a good harvest and a successful hunt. The shark is often viewed with fear due to the false notion that they are dangerous predators, but sharks are actually a sign to let go of fear and go after what you really want. Seahorses symbolize patience and contentment. They are considered to be symbols of strength and power — even though they are so tiny! Sailors viewed them as good luck charms, which might be why seahorses have a prominent place on most charm bracelets! The tortoise is an ancient animal. Ancient societies believed the world was flat and sat on the back of a tortoise, which is why they are often linked with creation and bearing the weight of the whole world. Tortoises symbolize wisdom and ancient knowledge as well as immortality, time, water, and the moon. While each bird has a unique meaning, birds, in general, symbolize freedom and movement. Many ancient societies and tribes viewed them as messengers of god — after all, these creatures can get closer to heaven than any other animal! Birds are a reminder that we are not meant to be chained to the ground — we were always destined to soar! The finch symbolizes colourful and happy times ahead and is often associated with high energy and bright days on the horizon. It reminds you that life is a celebration — so let your colours shine! Looking to get a red finch inked? Visit Verve ! Greek mythology associates the raven with Apollo, the god of prophecy, and many think of them as a symbol of bad luck. In Native American symbolism, the raven is a symbol of metamorphosis, as well as of mischief due to its association with changing attributes. Ravens are also associated with melancholy, possibly owing to Edgar Allen Poe’s ‘The Raven’ which made it a symbol of pain and darkness. In actuality, ravens teach us to overcome the fear we have been holding on to for a long time. The mythical phoenix is often associated with rebirth and renewal, as well as fire and the sun. This is because this a phoenix usually dies by bursting into flames and a new phoenix is born from these ashes. Because the phoenix never truly dies, it represents immortality, life and death, and transformation. Soaring higher than any other bird, the eagle is thought to be a connection to the divine. It sees everything from above, symbolizing freedom, honesty, and living true to your principles. Check out Verve for some amazing ornamental and geometric animal tattoos! Eagles also teach us to stay focused — it’s pretty difficult to miss anything when you have a bird’s-eye view! Associated with war and death, crows have been dealt a bad hand in modern symbolism. In reality, crows are a sign of health and wealth and are bringers of good luck and fortune. They also symbolize magic and mystery. A very intelligent creature of the night, owls tell us to trust our inner knowledge and have the foresight to make wise decisions. Get yourself an awesome owl tattoo from Ancient ! Owls are a reminder that the secrets of ancient wisdom are meant for those who have earned the right to know! Want an artist to draw your story in ink? Check out Atinga ! Most commonly associated with Bob Marley’s ‘every little thing will be alright’, the three little birds also represent being free of worry, trusting yourself and not being afraid to fall, and knowing when it’s time to soar. With little black birds, it’s all about hopes and dreams ! A symbol of peace, doves remind us to live calmly and with purpose. Thought to be a messenger that brings messages from the afterlife, doves are often believed to be holy and a connection to the divine. Peacocks are a symbol of beauty and elegance, nobility and grace, prestige and success. Peacock feathers are thought to have magical and hypnotizing powers. In South Asian mythology, the peacock feather was used by Lord Krishna to cleanse the feet of the goddess Radha, and is thus also associated with beauty and knowledge. Book an appointment with Machu Tattoo Studio and get a beautiful peacock feather tattoo inked today! On a deeper level, peacocks teach us that we are most beautiful when we reveal our true colours.
What animal is a symbol of healing?
The pig is the archetypal symbol of plenty, healing, and shapeshifting.
Where is the least painful place to get a tattoo?
Least painful to tattoo – The least painful places to get a tattoo are areas of your body with fewer nerve endings. Think outer shoulder, calf, buttocks, and outer arm. While people generally focus on the location on the body, Stanley Kovak , a cosmetic physician, theorizes that pain is more about size.
What does a tattoo on ring finger mean?
Honor – Another popular reason to get a tattoo on the ring finger is to honor someone who has passed away. Some people choose to inscribe the name of a lost child, husband, partner, etc. The design is a symbolic way of saying that they are going through life with the guiding hand of the one they have lost.
What is the symbol for mental illness?
The green ribbon is the international symbol for mental health awareness. Wear a green ribbon to show colleagues, loved ones or simply those you walk past that you care about their mental health. It can also be worn in memory of a loved one.
What does it mean when a rabbit visits you?
What do rabbits symbolize? – Rabbits are considered lucky in many cultures. A bunny in the wild is seen as a positive omen because of this, and seeing one or having one cross your path is considered lucky. Good luck in love, family, and finances are all associated with seeing a rabbit.
Are rabbits good luck?
So, where did the phrase “rabbit, rabbit” come from? – While we can’t pinpoint the precise origin of saying “rabbit, rabbit,” on the first of the month, there are several reasons why rabbits are often thought of as good omens and invoked in the name of luck.
Rabbits have been considered a symbol of fortune for over 2,000 years according to NPR. For example, a rabbit’s foot has historically been considered a lucky token. In addition, these, um, prolific procreators, are also an ancient symbol of fertility and life , as well as a religious symbol of spring and renewal.
But it wasn’t until the early 1900s that we first saw a written reference to the superstition. In a 1909 issue of the British journal Notes and Queries , a parent observed that children would say “rabbits” on the first of the month for good luck, according to the History Channel.
- It’s also been used by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt;
- The Nottingham Evening Post reported in November 1935 : “Even Mr;
- Roosevelt, the President of the United States, has confessed to a friend that he says ‘Rabbits’ on the first of every month—and, what is more, he would not think of omitting the utterance on any account;
” More recently, the tradition has been kept alive and well by shows like Nick Days by Nickelodeon as well as actress Sarah Jessica Parker, who consistently has posted “rabbit rabbit” on Instagram on the first day of the month and collaborated with GapKids on a 2018 clothing line that features the phrase “rabbit rabbit ” on jackets.
What does seeing 3 rabbits mean?
Three Hares on a wooden church boss in South Tawton, Devon (© Chris Chapman) An enigmatic trio of rabbits running in a circle appears on centuries of art, from medieval churches in England to Buddhist caves in China. While each bunny seems to have two ears, the symbol is actually a visual puzzle: a total of three ears connects them in their endless loop. Some believe the rabbits symbolize eternity; others think they stand for fertility. Still others consider them a representation of the connection between the heavens and the Earth.
The original meaning of the three hares motif remains obscure, but its cross-cultural significance inspired three researchers to spend over two decades traveling the world to unravel some of its arcane history.
Cover of ‘The Three Hares’ (courtesy Skerryvore Productions) (click to enlarge) Released as a limited-edition book by Skerryvore Productions , The Three Hares: A Curiosity Worth Regarding was created by archaeologist Tom Greeves, art historian Sue Andrew, and photographer Chris Chapman.
All three are based in Devon, England, where there are 17 churches with three hares on their oak bosses (roundels often found on the ceiling). The book evolved from the group’s Three Hares Project , and includes thorough essays by Andrew and Greeves alongside Chapman’s images, chronicling their trek to trace the evolution of the symbol.
“Our constantly expanding journey embraces Judaic, Buddhist and Islamic hares from western Europe to China, or vice versa, touching Himalayan Ladakh and the Swat valley in Pakistan,” Greeves writes in an introduction. “We believe that the Mongol Empire and precious silk played a crucial part in transmission of the motif over vast distances in medieval times, traveling on the many strands of the Silk Road.
- ” In Corbenay, France, they viewed a beautiful example of the three hares carved in white stone in the cellar of a 98-year-old woman named Madame Bardoz, whose home was built on the ruins of a medieval church;
In Stuttgart, Germany, another manifested on a painted wooden ceiling in an 18th-century synagogue. The researchers were told the hares indicated the Holy Trinity while in Switzerland and the meeting of heaven and Earth while in China, where the rabbits are depicted in the Buddhist cave temples of Mogao.
Stained glass in Long Melford, England (© Chris Chapman) Not everyone they met was thrilled by the chase. Greeves describes a monk at a Benedictine abbey in St-Benoît-sur-Loire, France, who, upon being shown an image of the three hares and asked if he knew of any, was “surprisingly forthright in his dismissal of such a suggestion, saying, ‘Non, ce n’est pas chrétien!’ (No, it is not Christian!)'” There may very well be something pagan, or alchemical, about the three hares, which have the same cyclical energy as the ouroboros (snake eating its own tail), a symbol that dates back to ancient Egyptian funerary texts.
Andrew writes about the complex interpretations of the hares in one of her essays: As a symbol, the hare in the medieval period might be regarded in either a positive or negative light. More often than not, the hare was regarded pejoratively, belonging to ‘the lascivious hunt of Venus, the hunt of lust, rather than to the virtuous hunt’.
- Nevertheless, the assumption of the Ancients that the hare could procreate without a mate led to the belief that it could give birth without losing its virginity;
- While the hare might be associated with lust, it could also represent chastity and virgin birth;
She adds that if “we seek a precise meaning for the Three Hares, at the expense of understanding what they do, we might just miss their real significance, for running in their never-ending circle they may have stirred memories and powered prayer in ways we are only just beginning to understand.
What do rabbits symbolize in Japan?
What Do Rabbits Symbolize in Japanese Culture? – Symbolically, rabbits share many meanings in Japanese and Chinese culture. Nonetheless, there are some differences to consider. In Japanese culture, rabbits do symbolize luck, but they also are considered symbols of ambition, advancement, and self-devotion.
- Thanks to their short forelegs, they climb hills far more easily than they descend;
- As such, rabbits are seen as symbols of progress, both personal and joint;
- The rabbit also symbolizes the moon in Japanese culture;
There is a legend that rabbits pound mocha on the moon, and so can often be seen in motifs which include the moon. This practice of making sweet treats gives rabbits a bonus symbology. They’re commonly associated with the New Year and the rebirth of the world as it moves into spring.
These positive links with rabbits may be why rabbits are often featured on kimonos, fans, silk screens, and other decorations in Japan. By channeling the energy of the rabbit, people can invite beauty, grace, and good fortune into their lives.
There is one big difference between the symbolism of rabbits in Chinese and Japanese culture. While rabbits are overwhelmingly seen as positive in Chinese culture, they are considered tricksters in Japanese culture. This duality is more in line with the symbolism of rabbits in many European cultures.