Have you heard of Embalse de Toros? This was once a big bullfighting festival for bulls and bull riders. Most of us know bulls from this context. However, the bulls have been used in spiritual symbolism throughout history.
Bulls are associated with solar energies, resilience, power, determination, strength, and fertility. They are considered positive symbols for attributes that lead to a successful life.
Now, let’s look at the spiritual symbolism of the bull in different cultures and histories.
Bull Symbolism: What does a Bull symbolize?
In the 16th century, bullfighting was called Jaripeo in Mexico. This means that the bull rider must ride the bull to death.
However, it evolved and was used as a test for courage and strength to conquer and survive riding a robust and powerful beast.
In some ancient cultures, bulls are valued and respected. Bulls have several spiritual symbolism like strength, determination, power, protection, and fertility. They also represent solar energies and resilience.
Religious Symbolism of Bulls
Many animals are referenced in various religions, and these include the bulls. While they represent the virtues needed for life among Christians, Hindus are reminded of their gods when encountering bulls.
Bulls in Christianity
In the bible, bulls have several symbols. They played a vital role in breeding, but one bull only reproduced several dozen.
Also, bulls’ size and strength symbolize power and fertility, and they are naturally aggressive and hard to domesticate.
So, they were valued and respected so much that sacrificing them would underestimate their acquired divine status as an alternative offering to God instead of humans.
Bulls in Hinduism
Similar to cows, bulls in Hinduism are vital in their philosophy and mysticism. Nandi was the celestial bull that sat and guarded three major Hinduism gods.
This celestial being guards the gates of Shiva temple. Also, Nandi represents joy giving as it is the meaning of their name.
Symbolic Meanings of Bulls in Different Cultures
Bulls have also become a crucial part of many cultures around the globe. The philosophy involving bulls, especially in the context of family creation, is shared among many ancient civilizations.
Bulls in Celtic Culture
Procreation is a bull’s symbol in Celtic culture. Also, druids, a high-ranking class in ancient Celtic, were associated with bulls.
Bulls also represent influence, celestiality, wealth, money, and riches. This can be traced back to the fact that the bull is linked to the Celtic god of nature and abundance, Cernunnos.
Bulls in Chinese Culture
Perseverance, strong will, and motivation are the symbols Chinese attached to bulls. In addition, sculpted bulls are famous in China because they represent a person with the bull’s characteristics of power.
Bulls in Hebrew Culture
Harmony and the ability to protect and take care of family and one’s self are symbols of a bull. Therefore, Hebrew culture viewed bulls as sacred and used them in front of the buildings.
Bulls in Sumerian Culture
In Sumerian culture, bulls represent protection and strength as they symbolize divinity as their gods were honored through song and rituals as great bulls.
Bull Symbolic Meanings
The Bull and Fertility
Thu bull in astrology is associated with Taurus, which means abundance, fertility, and replenishment, because of its connection to the spring blooming season.
The Bull and Determination and Perseverance
These characteristics of bulls show how persevering and determined people can be, especially when they set their hearts and mind to something.
Despite the difficulty, they will try to strive and achieve their goals.
The Bull and Stubbornness
Bulls are known to be stubborn. If they want something, they go for it, despite opposition. However, they won’t take action or nudge even for an inch if they do not want it.
This characteristic can be either good or bad, depending on the situation.
The Bull and Strength
Bulls are also known for their strength and aggressiveness. These characteristics were already depicted in literature, art, astronomy, and astrology.
That’s why bulls were put in front of temples to be used as protection from bad luck.
Myths about Bulls and Ancient Cultures
The Bull and Mesopotamia
Gods were linked to bulls in the early dynastic period to the Neo-Babylonian or Chaldean period.
The animal could represent the god, and the god could be taken as an example as a bull or could actually take the form of the beast.
The Bull and Greeks
In Greek mythology, the bull is associated with the Cretan Bull. Theseus had to capture Marathon, the ancient sacred bull, before facing the bull of Minos.
It was the minotaur Greeks described as a man with a head of a bull that was found in the middle of the labyrinth.
But in Bronze Age Crete, there were highly mobile figures of the young bull-leapers who were performing astonishing acrobatic executions using charging bulls.
What’s more, in the palace of Knossos, there were famous ‘bull leap’ fresco paintings, seals, and signets.
With that, they called it the bronze cult bull age since there were activities like paintings, leisure, and engraved images attributed to bulls in ancient Minoan palaces.
It was because King Minos prayed to Poseidon for a white bull to show his support from the gods and his authority to rule. So, he manifested his fascination with bulls.
Bull as a Spirit Animal
You are patient and hardworking when your spirit animal is a bull.
Also, having a bull as your totem animal can mean that you understand the importance of work ethic and have a good team spirit to achieve a common goal.
Not only that, persistence, modesty, and protecting oneself from negative energies are also dominant characteristics.
With that, stubbornness is also evident in your character. However, this character is drawn toward helping others, giving you a feeling of deep purpose.
Strength is the characteristic bull also represents. Even though you are facing difficulties in life, you stay strong, resilient, but humble.
Bull Symbolism in Dreams
Bulls in a Farm Field
Bull in a farm field means taking a step back and keeping yourself grounded when you feel that you are getting aggressive. So this dream interpretation is a reminder to feel calmness and peace.
Additionally, a bullfight can mean that you are ignoring someone, and it is time to pay attention to that person.
What’s more, if you were the bull in a bullfight, it also means that you are trying to reach something and struggling to realize this objective.
Moreover, if you are just watching the bullfight, subconsciously, your inner self is telling you to do something fun and do something worthwhile.
Bulls and statues
Dreaming of ancient bull statues can mean that you need to examine your religious life. Dreams with ancient items are signs or messages from God.
Bulls and blues
Ultimately, seeing a crying or sad bull symbolizes that you are feeling blue, lonely, and deprived of attention, support, or care.
Bulls are one of the animals that are respected and considered valuable. Therefore, recognizing signs and messages involving bulls can be an advantage, and use them as guidance from the universe. This can help you navigate life from a different, fresher perspective.
Indeed, they can be stubborn; however, they show excellent characteristics of power, strength, perseverance, protection, and abundance.