Skip to Content

Northern Lights Symbolism: The Spiritual Meaning of Aurora Borealis

Northern Lights Symbolism: The Spiritual Meaning of Aurora Borealis

Seeing the northern lights or Aurora Borealis is almost on everyone’s bucket list. They remain one of the most enchanting things in the world as it looks magical with their moving green and red streaks. 

But behind the captivating appeal of the northern lights lie symbolisms that could inspire you to have a deeper understanding of yourself and the universe as a whole.

The spiritual meaning of Aurora Borealis varies from surfacing beauty, upcoming opportunities, new beginnings, the unknown, and even death. But the specific message you’re bound to interpret, depends on how you’re life has been shaped lately. 

Find out what the northern lights try to convey as you continue reading this article. 

What Is the Spiritual Meaning of Aurora Borealis?

The northern lights are a unique phenomenon that is hard to ignore. In the same way, its spiritual meaning can be evident. However, you can still fail to interpret what it represents without truly understanding its symbolism. 

Aurora Borealis as a Symbol of Beauty

The dancing lights portrayed by Aurora Borealis hold an undeniable beauty that fascinates even the most uninterested individuals. And since the northern lights are only found in specific places on the planet, witnessing them first-hand becomes a privilege for many. 

Still, once these lights frequently appear in your life, even as a mere image, you may be reminded to appreciate the beauty within or around you. It’s a great way to achieve balance in your life, especially if you’re experiencing unpleasant encounters in your life.

Aurora Borealis as a Symbol of Opportunities

When the northern lights manifest, they carry with them opportunities for exploration.  

It’s easy to assume that the Aurora Borealis is an out-of-this-world display filled with mystic magic. But in reality, it results from the interaction between charged particles in the atmosphere. 

Still, even with this knowledge, there is plenty to know about this spectacular event. 

Aurora Borealis as a Symbol of New Beginnings

Light, in general, brings the message of hope and a new chapter in life. But the northern lights, with their gradience (similar to rainbows) and elegant contrast to the dark backdrop, suggests new beginnings with exciting changes. Moreover, it symbolizes the idea that starting over again can make certain aspects of your life bloom exponentially, which justifies your need for a 180-degree change.  

Aurora Borealis as a Symbol of the Unknown

The northern lights do not simply represent a spectacular light show. It also appears to be like a veil, separating the physical from the spiritual realm. As such, they bear the symbol of the unknown or the untouched. 

Aurora Borealis as a Symbol of Death

Many cultural groups close to the Aurora Borealis see it as a representation of death. It is believed that the dancing northern lights are spirits. Some say they are those who have died violently, while others claim that they hold evil as they celebrate the absence of the sun.     

Northern Light Symbolism in Religions

Since the northern lights are rarely found in the birthplaces of most religions, it is rare to find texts pointing to their significance in various religious beliefs. However, in the modern era, Aurora Borealis has been a model for God’s well-designed creations, reminding people that He is the master of the universe. 

The Meaning of Northern Lights in Christianity

The book of Ezekiel 1:4 says, “I looked, and I saw a windstorm coming out of the north – an immense cloud with flashing lightning and surrounded by brilliant light.” Geographically, it was impossible for people at this time to see the northern lights. But it is believed that they showed up due to a rare event such as a massive solar storm

The northern lights and their unlikely visibility during these times reaffirm the infinite power of God. Yet, at the same time, it also imposes fear that allows believers to cling to their faith as God remains in control. 

Symbolic Meaning of Aurora Borealis in Cultures

Tribes and ancient cultures encountering the northern lights hail the Aurora Borealis as an extraordinary event with a special spiritual meaning. Check out how their interpretation in the following lines.

Aurora Borealis Meaning in Native American Tribes

Native Americans, like the Cree Indians and Eskimo tribes, believe in the strong connection between the northern lights and the dead. They call out for the Aurora to speak to their dearly departed. Likewise, they have folklores describing how spirits use the northern lights as torches, guiding those who have recently died to the afterlife.

Aurora Borealis Meaning in Iceland and Greenland

While many cultures believe that Aurora Borealis carry the spiritual meaning of death, those living in Iceland and Greenland associate them with birth. 

Icelandic ancestors believe that the northern lights relieve the pain of delivering a child. Just don’t stare directly at the lights. Otherwise, the child will be crossed-eyed. 

On the other hand, in the Greenland culture, the symbolism of the northern light bears both childbirth and death. Although it represents birth, it is also widely believed to have links to the souls of babies who were stillborn or have died during birth.  

Northern Lights Dream Meanings

Dreaming about the Aurora Borealis is pretty rare compared to other events or elements. That’s why it’s crucial to comprehend the message it brings. Although the northern lights closely link to death and spirits, their appearance in dreams entails mostly positive meanings.  

Seeing the Great Northern Lights

Seeing the northern lights in your dream means having a spiritual encounter filled with love and renewal. It could be something that will spark motivation and a sense of fulfillment in your life. 

Chasing Aurora Borealis

When you see yourself running after Aurora Borealis in your dream, it could signify that you’re ready to learn new things. You are eager to know more which opens opportunities for eventual success. 

Getting Blinded by Aurora Borealis

If you got blinded by the glaring Aurora Borealis in your dream, it might be high time to check your expectations. You may be anticipating beyond what reality can deliver. For example, you may have certain expectations from your partner that couldn’t be returned. It tears your relationship and leads to fighting. 

Seeing a Reflection of the Northern Lights

A dream with a reflection of the northern lights means you want to go deeper into your faith or religious belief. You may want to take your understanding of the scriptures or principles governing your religion to the next level. 


Aurora Borealis translates to “sunrise” (Aurora) and “wind” (Borealis). More than the spectacular light show it presents are spiritual meanings that could direct you to your purpose, wellness, and proper understanding of the physical and spiritual worlds. It’s hard to ignore its beauty and uniqueness. So do the same with its message.