pigFor some time the intelligent pig has a negative symbolism: an incorrect value, ignorance and greed.

In the ancient world, however, the pig was seen as a symbol of fertility, and in Egypt as an animal sacred to Isis, the goddess of agriculture, Ceres in Rome and Demeter in Greece.

The American Indians perceived the pig as a bringer of rain, which fertilizes the earth. For the Celts, it was a symbol of strength and love, fertility, good luck and prosperity, and consecrated to the goddess of the pig Ceridwen, "Old White" and the mother of the goddess of the moon and fertility Theia, who was nursing the gods with her breasts. For Hindus, the pig represents the female aspect of Vishnu - Vajravarahi. The black pig, on the contrary, is disturbing; however, in Egypt it is an animal sacred to Seth, the god of the desert, storms and foreigners.

In Buddhism, the pig is located in the center of the wheel of existence and represents ignorance - one of the three illusions that prevent a person to arrive at the fullness of life (the ultimate goal of it). As well, in Judaism and Islam, the pig is an unclean animal, in fact, Jews and Muslims do not eat pork. Christians see it as a vile, rude creature, a symbol of the sins of the flesh, and in particular as an expression of greed. The pig can be identified with Satan, because of the "marks of the devil," the footprints left by the front legs of the pig.

The twelfth sign of the Chinese zodiac is the pig, the embodiment of integrity. The Suidae family, to which the pigs belong, includes the wild boar, which for the Greeks, Celts and Japanese symbolizes the positive characteristics of strength and ferocity.For Hindus, Vishnu and Rudra boars were celestial. In the Western tradition, however, the wild boar can also be referred to brutality, lust and sin.


The wild boar and pig

The wild boar, like the moon, is a solar symbol. The wild boar is the personification of the sun, and is associated with masculinity in its extreme manifestations such as: aggression, courage, struggle, blood lust, intemperance, gluttony, immorality and debauchery. The "white pig" was considered a lunar animal, associated with female and fertility. For the Celts the symbol of the wild boar expressed positive values. This animal was considered the embodiment of courage and altruism. The Scandinavians believed that the wild boar had prodigious abilities, so they wore helmets emblazoned with the image of the wild boar, or the mask of the animal, so that the soldiers on the battlefield had their protection.

The warrior, wearing a special helmet or wild boar mask, was under the protection of the goddess Freya. In the tomb of the deceased the wild boar flesh was placed, because it was believed that this would give him the strength on the way to the afterlife. For the Greeks, the Hittites and the Norse mythology the motif of the transformation of man into the wild boar often prevails. In that way the sinners were punished for their misdeeds.

The Indians of South America were convinced that the pigs turned into beast people to insult the son of a god or a hero. The Druids associate the wild boar with incarnation of spiritual power, while its opponent, the bear represents the secular, military power. Perhaps, this association was born, because the wild boar lives in the forest, and leads a secluded secret life that resembles that of a solitary hermit. In addition, pigs feed on acorns, the fruit of the sacred oak, mushrooms and truffles.

In the Indian mythology and legend it is said that Brahmin Vishnu saved the earth in the form of the wild boar. The demon Hiranyaksha, an implacable enemy of the gods, sank the earth into the ocean, but the wild boar Varaha killed the demon and lifted the earth from the water with the tusks. The female incarnation of Varaha is Vajravarahi (a feminine form of the Buddha, also known as Vajradakini (Diamond Skywalker) or Vajrayogini (Diamond Spiritual Athlete).

The above female deities symbolically represent the Buddhist view, the illumination goes beyond any sexual identity. Hindus worshiped the wild boar, as a source of life and fertility. In the Buddhist iconography, the wild boar is located in the center of the wheel of samsara, as a symbol of the sins of the flesh, passion and ignorance. In Christianity, the symbol of the wild boar has a downside. It is often associated with ferocity, wild blind force, cruelty, lust and gluttony. It is also associated with the devil and the dark forces of evil.

An episode of the Gospel tells of Christ's exorcism. The man possessed by demons in the land of the Gerasenes, was forced to live in caves and wander through the mountains in the throes of his madness. When Jesus met him and asked his name, he called himself "Legion," because there were a lot of demons inside of him. Then those demons begged Jesus to be sent in the middle of the pigs. They were satisfied, but the pigs went crazy, rushed into the lake, drowning (see the Gospel according to St. Luke and Mark). For Jews and Muslims pork is evil, forbidden food, and its symbolism is also associated with gluttony, lust, unbridled aggression. However, the pig is a symbol of motherhood, prosperity and wealth. It is also dedicated to the Great Mother that represents both the fertility and the greed and the greatest deception of the goddess.


Ancient Germanic wild boars

For Nordic Gods Frejra and Freji, the wild boar was considered a sacred animal. Frejra called the wild boar sunny Gullinburstine, which means "from the golden bristles." For Freji the wild boars, Hildisvini, were her beloved herd; so, this animal was considered a symbol of protection of the goddess, as well as for military affairs and love. The warriors of Odin in Valhalla ate the wild boar Zehrimnira every day, and at night its bones grew back the meat again.


Wild boar hunting

The victory of the hero of the wild boar is a common mythological motif. The ancient cults linked the boar with the beyond. They believed that the ruler of the "kingdom of darkness" always had in abundance, pork, with which he fed people. The Celts believed that the wild boar pursued by hunters, could lead them into the realm of the dead. The Romans associated the wild boar with god Mercury that was believed to be the companion of souls into the kingdom of the dead.


The shepherds

In ancient times, those who took care of cattle were highly respected in their communities. It was thought that the shepherds had secret power, allowing them to come into contact with the animals. In addition, it was believed that the divine shepherds, rulers and protectors of animals were endowed with the ability to penetrate in the afterlife.


The Eleusinian Mysteries

In Eleusis in Attica, the ancient Greeks used to organize a religious festival in honor of the goddess Demeter and her daughter Persephone. Demeter is the hypostasis of the White Goddess, a symbol of the female fertility, the bloom and life. The "Eleusinian Mysteries" took place in September, with nine days of celebrations and represented the myth of the abduction of Persephone from her mother Demeter by the king of the underworld Hades. They tended to the spiritual purification, and represented the suffering and tragedy, as well as a moment of consecration. In the representation of the Mysteries, Demeter is also the goddess of fertility.



The peacock - In Indian mythology, to draw its wings, reminiscent of many eyes, represents the image of a starry sky.

The spider - In ancient Indian tradition Brahma, the creator of all things, was allegorically called the spider that was spinning the web of the world.

The dove - In China, a dove is a symbol of longevity and filial piety. In the East, the dove is a symbol of love and marriage.

The tiger - The tiger is a symbol of power, strength and success, but at the same time it is a symbol of destruction, because the energy can be both creative and destructive.

The lion - In the symbolism of the elements associated with the fire, the lion represents courage, supreme power, nobility and pride.

The jaguar - Aztecs and Maya  believed that four jaguars represent the guardians of the road to peace.

The elephant - represents many qualities including: strength, royal power, dignity, patience, wisdom, longevity and happiness, as well as being a symbol of good luck.

The butterfly - is a symbol of a soul,  the fragility, the shortness of life, happiness and non-permanence.

The owl - It is a symbol of wisdom, knowledge, sensitivity, a prophetic gift, moderation, and melancholy.

The toad - In Vietnam, the toad is associated with rain, fertility, wealth, and sexuality. In Egypt, frogs were considered sacred animals.

The bear - The bear is a symbol of good will, heroic strength and clumsiness but also of malice, brutality and greed.

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