Sunday, June 17, 2018

Happy Fathers Day

Mother and child is a powerful archetype. Since the first birth, through millennia of human existence mothers and children were seen, and hailed as the continuation of the species. This image is found in every culture and every religion, and all around the world it is universally understood. It stands for the strongest love known and for the miracle of new life.   

But what of the dad?

Dads are the child’s first hero. He is there, providing and protecting both the mother and the child. Sweet little princesses hold their big hero-dad’s finger, and learn from him how it is she should be treated by future princes in her life. When a tiny prince is born, he learns from his dad how to be loyal and brave, work hard, dream of better things, and achieve them. He watches how his hero-dad treats the precious mom. And make no mistake; she is all important to the young prince. He is watching.

Like Father Like Son is a popular phrase. Perhaps it is used by those who want to place responsibility for a son’s actions onto the father. There is perhaps some truth to this, although it is not always accurate, and not always fair. But, genetically speaking it can be so. The young prince has inherited the looks, traits, likes, and dislikes of the parents. He learns habits and world view from those who raise him. 

Being a dad is a huge responsibility. It is a lifetime commitment. Your lifetime. Till you die, you will be a father, grandfather, and perhaps great grandfather. Children grow to adults, and still you are their father. Some men choose not to become fathers. Some become fathers without choosing. 

Having children is how humanity continues. Like every other species of plant or animal, fish or reptile, humans must procreate. It is part of being human. Some may choose not to, and that is ok. But to those who make the leap into fatherhood, I hail the tremendous courage it takes to be responsible for the life of a teeny tiny human. A lifetime of caring, providing, helping, teaching, training, housing, feeding, and loving is ahead of you. But there is no greater accomplishment. And just to be clear, some fathers sacrifice their lives to protect their own. The ultimate act of love is to protect at the cost of your own life. 

So, to all those fathers out there, be blessed, be proud of yourselves, and as I heard someone say, don’t weaken. You will reap rewards unavailable to those who do not know what fatherhood is.

All you fathers deserve a day off to be home instead of at work, to listen to the kids fight instead of to your co-workers bitch, and to experience the family you provide for. And remember on this day for dads, you would not be here without one. If your hero-dad still lives, be sure to thank him for taking the leap into fatherhood. The rest of us should remember that although the woman conceives and carries, gives birth through labor, and is generally responsible for diapers and food, without a man there would be no new life. Thank him for his hard work out in the tough world to make a living, to pay rent or mortgage, and standing up for his family when necessary. 

Happy Fathers Day!!!


About Symbologist Michelle Snyder


Michelle earned her post-graduate degree at the University of Wales, decoding prehistoric images, mythology, folklore, and fairy tales and tracing them to their roots. She is an author, columnist, publisher, artist, and teacher. Her artwork, inspired by her love of symbolism and folklore, has appeared in galleries from Massachusetts to California. Michelle is co-owner of White Knight Studio.
     Books by Michelle, available at Amazon:

    Symbology series:


Symbology ReVision: Unlocking Secret Knowledge  
Symbology: Hidden in Plain Sight
Symbology: My Art and Symbols 
Symbology: Fairy Tales Uncovered 
Symbology: Decoding Classic Images 
Symbology: World of Symbols  
Symbology: Secrets of the Mermaids

Fairy Tales: 

A Tale of Three Kingdoms: Book One - The Lost Unicorn
A Tale of Three Kingdoms: Book Two - The Lost Mermaid
The Fairy Tales: Once-Upon-A-Time Lessons First Book



Friday, June 8, 2018

Message from A Grave


At the Cistercian Monastery in Cumberland Woods, RI.

David Brody, best selling author of Cabal of the Westford Knight and other publications, discovered this site when on an investigation of the area. Having many questions about it, he took a photograph. Symbologist Michelle Snyder and Dr. Robert Duncan-Enzmann studied the photo and have discovered that it is not an insignificant burial.

That this person was buried with the blessing of Christ is indicated by the moss-covered stones in a cross shape.

It is identified geographically by certain of the surrounding stones.

The pattern conveys that 'as it was here, so it will be there'.

The triangle and the blue circle have interesting significance. The circle represents the thing to be measured. The triangle indicates the way to measure it.: 3/5/7, Reiman (the square root of all numbers).

(5-4=1, 5+1=6, 5-2=3. With this you can arrive at any number)

Reiman = measure by semi-neusis. Neusis measures any number.The arrangement at this grave indicates that the person buried here knew this and was likely a mathematician. 

There is no confirmation that the person was (or was not) a Templar, though it is known that the Cistercians were linked to the Knights Templar. Perhaps the deceased was a Monk, although we cannot tell that either, from the decorations at the site. 





About the Symbologist 
Michelle Paula Snyder, Mphil: Divinity

Michelle Snyder is a professor of mythology, and an author, publisher, speaker, and artist. She  did her post-graduate research at the University of Wales, decoding ancient and prehistoric symbolism, mythology, folklore, and fairy tales.  Her artwork has appeared in galleries from Massachusetts to California. Michelle is co-owner of White Knight Studio.


Symbologist Michelle Snyder
Non-Fiction - Symbology:
Symbology: Decoding Classic Images
Symbology: Decoding Symbols through History
Symbology: Fairy Tales Uncovered
Symbology: Art and Symbols
Symbology: Hidden in Plain Sight
Symbology: ReVision
Symbology: World of Symbols
Symbology: Secrets of the Mermaids

Michelle Paula Snyder
Fiction – Fantasy Wonder Tales:
The Fairy Tales: Once Upon a Time Lessons, First Book
Call of the Dragon and other Tales of Wonder
A Tale of Three Kingdoms, book one: The Lost Unicorn
 A Tale of Three Kingdoms, book two The Lost Mermaid 
A Tale of Three Kingdoms, book three The Lost Dragon

Friday, May 25, 2018

Thank you for treasuring freedom



Memorial Day is about remembering. It’s about appreciating the sacrifice of others who had a vision of freedom for a whole nation. This vision was not embraced lightly – they knew that freedom would be obtained with great difficulty, and that it could slip away easily, quietly in the night. These warriors who fought to support this vision died hoping that decades down the road they would have made a difference. They admonished us to be ever vigilant.

What we can ponder upon as we enjoy the sunshine this weekend is: what is freedom? Do we have the same vision as the great ones whose vision resulted in America?

This is a great country. Not perfect, but great. We may be called upon to make sacrifices to maintain our freedom. Perhaps even asked to die for it. Would you?        
     
Thank you to all who serve in our national defense system. Thank you to the families who have lost loved ones for the sake of freedom.  No, we are not perfect, yes we make mistakes. Leaders are human. It is up to the PEOPLE to make sure that our leaders are wise and have the vision to move us forward, to create sustainable relationships with other countries, and not to be deceived.

Thank you to those who sacrifice time with loved ones who are in active service.

Without you we would not be free. 



About Symbologist Michelle Snyder


Michelle Snyder is a professor of mythology, and an author, publisher, speaker, and artist. She  did her post-graduate research at the University of Wales, decoding ancient and prehistoric symbolism, mythology, folklore, and fairy tales.  Her artwork has appeared in galleries from Massachusetts to California. Michelle is co-owner of White Knight Studio.

Michelle Snyder
Non-Fiction - Symbology:
Symbology: Decoding Classic Images
Symbology: Decoding Symbols through History
Symbology: Fairy Tales Uncovered
Symbology: Art and Symbols
Symbology: Hidden in Plain Sight
Symbology: ReVision
Symbology: World of Symbols
Symbology: Secrets of the Mermaids

Michelle Paula Snyder
Fiction – Fantasy Wonder Tales:
The Fairy Tales: Once Upon a Time Lessons, First Book
Call of the Dragon and other Tales of Wonder
A Tale of Three Kingdoms, book one: The Lost Unicorn
 A Tale of Three Kingdoms, book two The Lost Mermaid
 A Tale of Three Kingdoms, book three The Lost Dragon

Monday, May 14, 2018

Totems and Animal Symbolism

My Totem - M. Snyder

One of the most popular and perhaps among the oldest, forms of symbolism is animals. Animal symbolism is found all around the world. Although many animal symbols are of fantastical beasts, such as the dragon, the unicorn, the griffin, and the sphinx, real animals have been part of symbolism from the time symbols were first scratched onto a surface. The Lascaux Caves in France (c. 14,500 BC), Altamira in Spain (c. 12,500 BC), and many other caves are filled with images of animals both real and familiar. These images are records of how our ancestors lived, hunted, and divided time. In the “art” of the Stone Age are many ancient calendrics using animal images.

Animal symbolism differs from culture to culture, as wildlife differs around the world and along the path of evolution. There are, however, great similarities in the concepts that animals symbolize. From these concepts we can extract information about the ideologies of ancient cultures. Animal symbolism can be images representing concepts linked to the qualities of the animal - birds can fly, and therefore can represent a link or messenger between Heaven and Earth. Symbols like the centaur are more practical: Centurions lead 100 men: centaurs are horseback leaders of 100 horseback warriors. The symbol of Sagittarius could represent horseback warrior centurions - great men whose legends are cherished for millennia, symbolized both visually and mythologically.

Study from the Book of Kells - M. Snyder
There is rich cultural flavor in animal symbolism. Celtic heraldry is abounding with animal symbols. Elite Irish families use animal symbolism on their coats of arms, Irish pubs often take the names of animals known for their strength, and contemporary Irish coins are minted with images of peacocks, salmon, and stags. The Celts revere animals as teachers, friends, and healers. They believe animals can teach us how to live in harmony with nature; studying the natural cycles of other life forms imparts understanding of how things work on a fundamental level. Animals are aware of changing seasons: some hibernate until spring, and some migrate seasonally. Much animal symbolism in Celtic and Welsh mythology is associated with fertility and vitality. Fish, in particular the salmon, symbolize wisdom. A common saying is “fish is brain food.” In Celtic mythology Taliesin, the child who grew to be a wise magician and bard, was found on a fish pier. This association can be traced back to the Allerød, when salmon were more abundant than ever before or since. Boars are symbols of courage: boars are strong, dangerous, and hard to kill. Iseult’s premonition of the death of Tristan came in a dream about the death of a great boar. Boars also represent fertility and wealth. The stag is associated with Cernunnos, the horned god of nature and hunting. Hounds are sacred to the Faeries of Ireland and Scotland and thus are held in very high regard in both lands. Celtic knots are mathematical formulas symbolized; most have animals imaged in them. 

Eastern symbolism is replete with animals. Many Chinese symbols portray good fortune and positive elements. Chinese people believe that by filling their lives with lucky objects and images they increase prosperity and happy circumstances, making their existence joyful and fulfilling. The horse, the seventh sign of the Chinese Zodiac, is thought to be close kin to the dragon. Associated with elite status and military might, horses represent endurance, loyalty, and purity; they are also a symbol for quick advancement in rank and recognition of strength. One of the earliest Chinese images, the tiger, protects both the living and the dead, and is often seen on clothing or in the home to ward off harm. A tiger is an emblem of dignity, ferocity, sternness, and courage.

The animal symbolism of Native Americans is especially familiar in the West. In this tradition humans communicate with the Creator through interaction with nature: the birds, the forest, and the animals. Many individuals choose, or are given, a totem - a symbolic power animal whose character reflects the human character traits of the individual. According to Joseph Campbell, the word totem originally referred to a brother-sister blood relationship. The contemporary use of the word refers to a common ancestor as well as a symbol - often an animal - which unites a group of people. 

Totems generally have a protector relationship to the group. Tribes, families, and chiefs use totem poles to symbolize their gods and to record family history. Diverse tribes carve a different sets of images; some individual families or chiefs have their own. The tallest totem pole in the world is on the Nass River, between Canada and Alaska. He is “Kandah the Shark” of the Sakau’wan clan, towering 80 feet 6 inches. Said to be a King Salmon, this giant represents several Eagle clans on the coast.
   
In the past, totem poles may have had other significance. As they are carved out of trees the wooden totems do not last very long. The oldest standing totems are from the late 1800’s, but there are stories from all parts of Canada and the United States of much older totems. The real history and meaning has been lost, even to most tribes. The makers of modern totems follow the visual tradition established by artists long gone. 

Totems found in various locations have different characteristics. This is commonly attributed to the varying gods and ancestors of the tribes. It is my theory that the location of the tribe influenced which gods and animals were depicted, and the geographic surroundings inspired the design of the totem. I posit my thinking on such visual activity as the following; a description based on an experience I had: 

Imagine a perfectly still, mirror-like body of water. You lie down on the soft grass near the bank to meditate, gazing at the opposite shore. In the stillness and quiet of early morning, the rocks, trees, and grasses, with their crisp reflections in the mirror-like water, take on the likeness of gods and goddesses of nature, and ghosts of ancestors.    


Indian trackers, with their ear near the ground as they listen and look for tracks, would have this view frequently. These reflected images are surprisingly similar to totems. The picture above of reflected shoreline is of Woodford Lake in New Hampshire (photographer unknown). There is a convincing similarity to a totem pole, especially when the photograph is vertical. The totem on the right is from Vancouver, Canada, First Nation Stanley Park. Perhaps totems are territory markers fashioned after the geography found in the area, identifying the location and tribe to others. Although existing totems are not very old, we can still derive a great deal about the tribes that used them; their history, location, cosmology, and genealogy all influence the images of the totems. 
Mankind has always reflected upon the ways of animals, insects, and birds, sometimes for survival, and sometimes to look for a deeper and more harmonious relationship with Nature. The book of Proverbs admonishes us to consider the wisdom of the ant: “There be four things which are little upon the earth, but they are exceeding wise: The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer; The conies are but a feeble folk, yet make they their houses in the rocks; The locusts have no king, yet go they forth all of them by bands; The spider taketh hold with her hands, and is in kings' palaces.” (Prov. 30:24-28)   and “Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest” (Prov. 6:6-8). Animal symbolism from ancient and modern cultures is, in part, a record of accumulated knowledge of natural sciences.

Michelle Paula Snyder
Mphil: Divinity

Michelle Snyder is a professor of mythology, and an author, publisher, speaker, and artist. She  did her post-graduate research at the University of Wales, decoding ancient and prehistoric symbolism, mythology, folklore, and fairy tales.  Her artwork has appeared in galleries from Massachusetts to California. Michelle is co-owner of White Knight Studio.


Symbologist Michelle Snyder
Non-Fiction - Symbology:
Symbology: Decoding Classic Images
Symbology: Decoding Symbols through History
Symbology: Fairy Tales Uncovered
Symbology: Art and Symbols
Symbology: Hidden in Plain Sight
Symbology: ReVision
Symbology: World of Symbols
Symbology: Secrets of the Mermaids

Michelle Paula Snyder
Fiction – Fantasy Wonder Tales:
The Fairy Tales: Once Upon a Time Lessons, First Book
Call of the Dragon and other Tales of Wonder
A Tale of Three Kingdoms, book one: The Lost Unicorn
 A Tale of Three Kingdoms, book two The Lost Mermaid 
A Tale of Three Kingdoms, book three The Lost Dragon