Dragonflies arouse the imagination and dragonfly mythology has inspired art –poetry, paintings, totems, jewelry– in almost every culture and tradition. They are said to be messengers of joy, prosperity, and renewal. The imagination of the dragonfly arises from its unique characteristics, especially the fact that it transitions from one realm, water, to another, air.
The dragonfly begins its life in water. Dragonfly larvae live under the surface, some of them for as long as four years. There they eat almost anything, including tadpoles, mosquitoes, fish, and other larvae. When they mature, the dragonflies move their heads above the water’s surface and will spend a few hours up to as much as a day adjusting to breathing air.
Once they can breathe they will crawl to land and begin to dry. As they dry their larval shell begins to crack. Eventually the dragonfly unpacks itself. The long body/tail that has been compressed will unfold like a telescope to the long tube-shaped body. Over this it spreads the familiar four translucent wings. Those wings play with light, or perhaps light plays with the wings. In any event, the effect is a rainbow of color that changes from moment to moment as the dragonfly moves.
With a little imagination on our part we can see the dragonfly as a metaphor of our own activities. We pass from our daily lives, “under water,” into moments of revelation and delight as we travel, daydream, pray, and meditate. You might ask yourself, “how are dragonfly art pieces reminiscent of my own spiritual journey?”
Wearing Dragonfly Jewelry is an old tradition around the world. When you wear dragonfly earrings, are you reminding yourself of the whispers of creativity that arrive when you least expect them? Perhaps, the dragonfly necklace reminds you of the magical feelings in your heart when you have a special insight that was years in the making, something that was percolating inside until it suddenly arrives with a flash of brilliance. It could even be that the dragonfly you wear reminds you of the incredible things that you can do with “wise hands.”
If the dragonfly speaks to you, then you know something of this connection. And, if you have never thought of the dragonfly this way, then you may want to give this fascinating creature some thought. You never know how it might inspire you. There are many sites that flit over the top of the dragonfly without considering much about the life it lives.
We suggest you start by thinking of the literal activities of this fascinating creature that is so much more than a “bug.” The Smithsonian has a good page where you can begin to learn more about the incredible dragonfly.