Praying Mantis

Praying Mantis

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These traits have lead the mantis to be a symbol of meditation and contemplation. In fact, in China, the mantis has long been honored for her mindful movements.

The mantis never makes a move unless she is 100% positive it is the right thing for her to do. This is a message to us to contemplate and be sure our minds and souls all agree together about the choices we are making in our lives.

Overwhelmingly in most cultures the mantis is a symbol of stillness. As such, she is an ambassador from the animal kingdom giving testimony to the benefits of meditation, and calming our minds.

An appearance from the mantis is a message to be still, go within, meditate, get quiet and reach a place of calm. It may also a sign for you to be more mindful of the choices you are making and confirm that these choices are congruent.

The mantis presents a wealth of duality, and I get jazzed about that. If you research the mantis you will find she has the capacity for great tranquility and also great treachery. I’m pretty sure that is true of all of us. That is why the praying mantis is a great symbolic mentor. This unsuspecting insect shows us we are capable of being the epitome of peace but also pulling out big power when it is called for.

I just want to accentuate the aspect of the praying mantis, and her (the female) ability to devour her mate. Maybe I’m a big sicko to be fascinated by this angle, but if you’ve ever witnessed the mantis eating up her male partner, it really is a little breathtaking.

Okay, maybe I am demented for being totally enchanted by this act. But still…if you consider the overwhelming evidence that backs the mantis up as being a docile, graceful, peaceful creature…and yet recognize her propensity for deep destruction – doesn’t that intrigue you? Well, it does me. I love the idea of duality. I love that the mantis symbolism includes both serenity and severity.

“If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.”
~ Meister Eckhart

To continue with the interesting symbolism of mamma mantis’ tendency to kill her partners…she doesn’t always eat her mate. It’s really only when she feels her offspring are in threat. It may also happen if she’s incredibly hungry (I know the feeling, lol). But the fact remains it happens. And it happens in a most spectacular way. She yanks the head off her dandy man. Yep. Decapitation. Oy. This is due to the disposal of threatening teeth. Praying matis have pretty intense choppers. By chomping the head of her mate, she eliminates threat. You know what…I think that’s really symbolic.

So what’s my point to all this? It is a message. It is a lesson that we all should learn. Mantis reminds us we are capable of extreme peace as well as inducing extreme pain upon others. Maybe that doesn’t sit well with some of you, but in my world – that deals with every color under the heavens, I dig the idea of the potential. Sometimes our potential is all about grace. Sometimes our potential can be terrible and wickedly brutal. It happens. It is human nature, and apparently is also the nature of a praying mantis. So whether as a mode of self-protection, or protecting what we have born into this world – let the mantis make it very clear – we are capable of extraordinary actions to guard what we hold dear.

May all your praying mantis encounters be peaceful and revealing.