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Jewelry Symbols & their meanings

Learn more about cultural symbols, meanings, and design information, including which are used in my handcrafted jewelry. Designing my jewelry, I get inspiration from different cultures, and symbols that I have good knowledge of, since I have a master's degree in History of Religion. Most of my jewelries have charms in the form of various symbols, coins, or texts. Discover here a list of various popular symbols used in fashion jewelry and find out what they mean, where they originate from and which is the right one from you.

Buddha is a Sanskrit word. It refers to one who has awakened from the ignorant mind and who has awakened to reality. It represents the life of Siddhartha, an Indian prince that gave up his throne, riches and lavish lifestyle to look for true meaning and happiness in life. The title was used by a number of religious groups in ancient India and had a range of meanings, but it came to be associated most strongly with the tradition of Buddhism and to mean an enlightened being, one who has awakened from the sleep of ignorance and achieved freedom from suffering. According to the various traditions of Buddhism, there have been buddhas in the past and there will be buddhas in the future. Some forms of Buddhism hold that there is only one buddha for each historical age; others hold that all beings will eventually become buddhas because they possess the buddha nature (tathagatagarbha). Buddha is represented in many different forms, including ones that symbolize protection, serenity or meditation, medicine and teaching.

Butterfly symbolizes rebirth. It has a spiritual meaning of going within yourself, finding answers, and coming back stronger. In different cultures and countries, a butterfly symbolizes different things. Some compare its journey with a human's spiritual journey while others consider it god sent or an angel sent and some also consider it messaging from higher souls or souls of those loved ones who have left us. In China, for instance, butterflies symbolize long life. Two butterflies flying together represents love. According to Navaho Culture, they are the symbol of joy and resurgence. In Celtic Culture, butterflies represents wealth, honor, good fortune, the fire of the Gods and dead child's spirit. Ancient Rome believed butterflies represent marriages and weddings. In Christian Culture, an emblem of resurrection.

Ganesha (Lucky Elephant): Elephants have symbolic meaning. They represent good luck, wisdom, success, power, peace, and even fertility. In Hinduism, Ganesha, the elephant-headed hindu god of beginnings is a symbol of good fortune and is known as being the remover of obstacles. This Elephant God of wealth and prosperity is often depicted as a man with the head of an elephant. Out of all the Hindu gods, Ganesha is worshipped before any major enterprise and is the patron of intellectuals, bankers, scribes, and authors. His name means both "Lord of the People" (gana means the common people) and "Lord of the Ganas" (Ganesha is the chief of the ganas, the goblin hosts of Shiva). Ganesha is potbellied and generally depicted as holding in his hand a few round Indian sweets, of which he is inordinately fond. His vehicle (vahana) is the large Indian bandicoot rat, which symbolizes Ganesha's ability to overcome anything to get what he wants. Like a rat and like an elephant, Ganesha is a remover of obstacles.

The Hamsa is a well-respected amulet in many different cultures and faiths. The hamsa has been variously interpreted by scholars as a Jewish, Christian, or Islamic amulet, and as a pagan fertility symbol. It is recognized today as a kabbalistic amulet and as an important symbol in Jewish art. As the references to Fatima (Mohammed's daughter) and to Miriam (Moses' sister) suggest, the amulet carries significance to both Jews and Muslims. Hamsa is drawn upon the word "khamsa," which means "five," a number that itself is identified with fighting the Evil Eye during the henna ceremony. This symbol (depicted by a right hand with an open palm or a hand with two open thumbs) is a sign of protection. The Hamsa is also a yoga symbol which is meant to be displayed or worn with the fingers facing down to offer the proper protection, and bring luck and strength.

Infinity, the concept of something that is unlimited, endless, without bound. Three main types of infinity may be distinguished: the mathematical, the physical, and the metaphysical. Perhaps the most familiar context for discussing infinity is in metaphysics and theology. Although Plato thought of the Absolute as finite, all theologians and metaphysicians from Plotinus (205-270 CE) on have supposed the Absolute to be infinite. What is meant by "the Absolute" depends, of course, upon the philosopher in question; it might be taken to mean God, an overarching universal mind, or simply the class of all possible thoughts.

The tree of life symbolizes wisdom, protection, strength, bounty, beauty and redemption. It represents strong family roots and personal growth. As we grow and develop as people, a larger and more mature personality emerges, just like the tree. Wear this charm as a symbol and guide to promote positive personal growth.

The Lotus flower: The water lily, or lotus flower, has a wealth of meaning and history behind it. The lotus flower blooms on the surface of water with its roots deep in the mud - a symbol of light and emergence from darkness. In Buddhism, the lotus blossom represents the heart opening. Buddhists compare the opening of the lotus flower petals to the unfolding of what is divine within you. It is a perfect reflection of new beginnings, purity and enlightenment. A closed bloom is the heart with its infinite potential for enlightenment, waiting to unfold.

Magatama, an ancient talisman of good fortune in Japan. It is a bead with religious significance in Japan's Shinto tradition. Magatama literally means "curved ball". They are curved, comma-shaped beads that appeared in prehistoric Japan. From early on, the magatama symbolized "avoidance of evil" or the "magic of good fortune." Some say it represents the shape of an animal tusk, and hence came to represent good luck in agriculture and husbandry. Others say it came from an ancient Korean diagram representing the mother's womb, or embryo, and hence came to mean all good things, like the blessing of a new child, growth, longevity, and properity. Thirdly, it is also equally plausible that the symbol originated from the ancient Chinese symbol for Taoism (Daoism), and it can be said to be a talisman meaning "resurrection", "birth", "yin yang" or "weapons".

The Mandala Loosely translated as "circle," mandalas are said to represent the universe. A mandala is designed to offer a visual balance of elements that symbolize harmony and unity. When used in a spiritual practice, the mandala is said to help absorb the mind in meditation. As you may have noticed, a mandala can come in an innumerable variety of designs, patterns, and colors. If you look closely, you'll see the mandala represented in so many aspects of your own life - the concentric circles in the patterns of nature, and even the circles of life, friends, and family.

Solar & Lunar Symbols The Sun and the Moon were worshipped by all the ancient civilizations for the mystical powers given to them by the Creator; the amazing phenomenon, such as eclipses, related to them; and the critical impact they have on human life. Therefore, the Sun and the Moon have long been part of ritualistic and religious practices of different cultures across the world. The Sun and the Moon have also come to symbolize different aspects of human consciousness.The moon represents the unconscious, whereas the sun, is the conscious part of the personality. 

The moon is a feminine symbol, universally representing the rhythm of time as it embodies the cycle. The phases of the moon symbolize immortality and eternity, enlightenment or the dark side (shadow) of Nature herself. It might reflect inner knowledge, or the phases of man's condition on earth, since it controls the tides, the rains, the waters, and the seasons. In astrology, the moon is a symbol of the soul, and in the horoscope it determines the subject's capacity for reflection and adaptation. The moon also provides analogy for the stages of human development: the new moon is infancy, the crescent is youth and adolescence, the full moon is maturity and pregnancy, and the waning moon represents the decline of life, sleep.
The Sun is a cultural symbol which symbolizes awareness, vitality, life's abundance, illumination, vigor, power, and glory. The sun has long been associated with these ideas and has often been seen as the primary source of life on earth. Rulers have often used the sun as symbol to burnish their own power and authority. The Incas of Peru believed the sun god Inti was the ancestor of the Inca royal family. In Japanese tradition, the country's imperial family is said to be descended from the sun goddess. Most notoriously, King Louis XIV of France called himself the Sun King as a way of asserting absolute power over his subjects.

The sun has also been used as a symbol of fertility and healing. The Hittites of ancient Turkey worshiped Arinna, an important goddess of both the sun and fertility. The Romans saw their sun god Apollo as an avatar of healing. Celtic peoples believed Belenus (their god of sunlight) drove away the predawn mists each day, and likewise could melt away disease from the sick. In many myths, the sun deity travels across the heavens in a chariot or boat. Therefore, the sun often represents a journey or adventure. The Egyptian sun god Ra journeyed across the sky, and at night he passed through the underworld, visiting the dead. Ra's daily cycle symbolized death and rebirth. For the Egyptians each sunrise was a celebration of the eternal return and a sacred victory of life and light over death and darkness. In many traditions, the Sun is represented as a masculine archetype.

The Ohm (Om) It looks a bit like the number 30 with a little hat on top. It's probably familiar to you from the Om chant you hear at the beginning or end of some yoga classes. Made up of the sounds of the letters A-U-M, Om is all about threes.With its roots in Hinduism, the Om symbol is said to represent the one-ness of all creation, including the heavens, earth, and underworld. Others say it is the representation of the three Hindu gods, Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. Some say the actual shape of the symbol represents the syllables of the word: the 'three' being the Sanskrit letter for 'aahh', the small 's' is the 'oooh' and the half moon at the top is the 'mmm' sound. Om is considered one of the most powerful mantras, and the ritual of chanting Om has been done for thousands of years.

The angel wing is very special as it is a symbol of angels who symbolize protection, purity, courage, love harmony, and protection. They provide us with happiness, hope, and faith.