The weather has been so beautiful. Perfectly spring! I went for a walk yesterday after exercising, and the air was cool, the sun was shining and it was amazing. I frequently walk across the street from my house at the park. It’s not a park with toys or things to play on for kids, it’s just a huge piece of land with a forest and wetland area and lots of trees and open field. It’s so pretty. I love it there. It’s peaceful and green and the birds fly around overhead and it’s just the best.
As I walked yesterday, I came across — in the middle of my direct pathway — a little snail. I haven’t ever, not once, seen a snail on any of my walks in all the years I’ve been walking, so this is not a regular occurrence. I took a picture of it, I picked it up and said hello … and then I moved it off the pathway. If someone wasn’t looking like I had been, they could step directly on the little guy.
When things appear that are out of the ordinary, I take them as “synchronicities.” Not coincidence. Not lucky. Not serendipity. But a little “message” for me that tells me something I need to hear.
And so when I got home after walking, I looked up the symbolism of snails.
Here’s what I discovered:
“Snails have a special slime for moving about, and another slime for protection. Apparently the motion-slime allows snails to move from point A to point B in smooth, slick fashion. This slime lets them move over challenging surfaces, like sticky stuff or grit. Symbolically, this begs the question, “What facilitates our mobility?” Most of us might not want to be covered in a literal slime to get us moving in the right direction, but metaphorically, we can focus on things that motivate us to move. Do as the snail does…get slickered up and move forward in a positive direction.”
I smiled as I read this first bit. I have, for 2 weeks, been very sick. Everything stopped. And I mean EVERYTHING. Almost like a time warp into a place where I was just existing and not doing anything but trying to survive. And now I’m feeling better enough that I want to get back up and working and exercising and meditating and doing all the things that I need to and want to do. But after 2 weeks it’s HARD to get motivated back into a positive direction. I definitely needed to be reminded of this.
“The second kind of snail slime is protective. They excrete a specialized goo that keeps their tender bodies insulated from harm. This slime helps snails avoid injury while they’re on the move. The slime also has healing qualities too, so if they do get a boo-boo, their slime gets them on the mend in double time. Symbolically, this links snail meaning with healing. Translate the power of healing snail slime to yourself and create an aura of well-being.”
I love this too. There is always healing needed, and to focus on it, and visualize an aura of good energy and healing helps create and expand healing in my life. I feel like, no matter how positive I am, and no matter how I choose to focus, things pop up. Emotional baggage. And I want to HEAL those things … not shove them back down, not ignore them and pretend they don’t exist, but look at them, shine light on them, and actually heal them so they are “redeemed” within me. It’s a really good reminder for me to visualize healing.
Ok. So more:
“Another very cool aspect of snail meaning is found in its shell. It carries its home upon its back. It can wander anywhere, and still be home. Not only that – the snail excretes a substance (calcium carbonate) that actually creates its own shell (unlike hermit crabs, who find shells already made to move into). This is hugely symbolic. It implies anywhere we go – that’s home. What’s key to feeling at home, is being okay with ourselves. Home is in the heart. We can make our own comfort from within. We can auger a sense of content just by being satisfied with who we are from the inside out. The snail reminds us of this vital aspect of living a whole life.”
I definitely needed to be reminded of this. Being ok with ourselves is so important and vital to well being. Accepting yourself is how peace can be present. Knowing that peace comes from within and no matter where I am I am connected to that space … THAT is wholeness.
A little more:
“Snail shells are typically spiral in nature. Spirals are symbolic of expanding consciousness. Alternatively, spirals can also imply a process of going within (spiraling inward) to seek inner consciousness for answers. The spiral is also featured in Egyptian hieroglyphics. The spiral is a common feature in nature. To the ancient Egyptians the spiral (and by association, the snail) was a symbol of the progress of life spiraling out and expanding. This concept deals with symbolism of: Consciousness, evolution and the expansion of life.”
I am always aiming at expansion. That is why we’re here, to expand in understanding and knowledge and joy and love. It is a good reminder that life is a constant ever expanding “spiral” of existence.
I got a lot out of reading about the snail. It served to remind me of some important aspects of life I was not fully focusing on, but in focusing on them I am able to more clearly stay aligned with my goals. Isn’t it cool that a little thing like a snail, sitting there in the middle of my pathway on a walk could bring so much focus and understanding? I love it. I love that life is full of these moments of understanding and teaching if we have eyes to see them. I appreciate God and the universe for continually sending me what I need to learn and grow and EXPAND!
I am grateful for that little snail today and for the reminder to continually move forward in a positive direction, to focus my energy on healing and love, to know and really fully accept the peace that comes from within, and to continually see the ways that I can expand myself and expand love.
What a blessing and what great understanding came from that one little moment I looked down and saw the snail at my feet.
Eyes to see … that’s all it takes.