One cannot get far without seeing the symbol of the bull.
The bull and its symbols are so common they have been depicted from astronomy, astrology, ancient art, literature and right up to the present. In Texas, for instance, the bull, specifically the Longhorn cattle, is the official “large animal” of the state. It is also the icon of the legendary Longhorns, the sport teams of the University of Texas at Austin.
Now, in this page, let us identify the bull symbols and that we may adapt for personal use, like maybe, tattoo purposes. Let us consider also their meanings.
First, what does the bull stand for? The following attributes are associated with the bull:
These attributes are a short list of what the bull represented to the human civilization across history. Impressive qualities, but the lowly bovine is totally deserving of it.
The early Celts esteemed the bull as the symbol of power and strength. Extremely virile, the bull embodies fertility, of prime importance to the communities at those times, as procreation ensures the survival and prominence of the clan. The spiritual guide of the Celts, the Druids, believed the bull exudes solar force, whereas the sow, earth force. A rich resource for food, farm labor, materials and corollary, wealth, the bull is highly priced, an assurance to gain luxury. Read more on Celts bull symbolism here.
Other ancient cultures, like the Sumerian and Semitic cults, regard the bull as a guardian, their symbol of protection. In their era, the bull is visibly portrayed in the arts. Most notably at entryways, bulls are displayed to protect temples and important structures from thieves and misfortunes.
The bull has been in human consciousness since time immemorial that a constellation is named after it. Once again the association between bull and abundance can be seen. Taurus, the bull constellation, faces the sun during the vernal equinox. This is spring (May 14 – June 19) in the western astrology, a time of renewal and resurgence of the earth.
Ancient literature likewise features the bull prominently. No less than Zeus, foremost god in ancient Greek mythology, transformed himself into a great white bull. It was Zeus means to capture the attention of beauteous Europa whom he loved. Tamed and striking, Zeus stood out among the herd. Greek classical art depicts Europa riding a majestic white bull. Zeus the bull symbolizes virility, passion, power, transformation and realization.
In astrology, the Taurus (Taurus is bull in Latin) personality is “bullish” in that he can be very powerful physically as well as in character. A Taurus who has made his decision cannot be moved otherwise. The sign of Taurus in astrology is to the left.
Shown to the left is the bull in the Chinese writing. The bull is also one of the zodiac sign in its lunar calendar. The Chinese considers the bull as the symbol of hard work, determination, perseverance, patience, stability and development.
Not like in the western astrology, the sign of the ox corresponds to the winter season with yin properties. 2009 was the year of the ox, and the next occurrence will be on 2021. See more on Chinese zodiac signs and meanings here.
Another ancient reference to the bull is the symbol on the right, the Hebrew aleph. The first letter in the Hebrew alphabet, it is originally thought to be derived from the Semitic word for bull. The pictograph (hieroglyph) on which the letter is based on depicts an ox’s head. The aleph as symbol for the bull denotes man’s ability to work with nature and other creatures in providing sustenance to the communities. Thus, it is symbolic of harmony and abundance. This is just one of the many connotations for the letter aleph. See about aleph in alchemy here.
There are almost endless symbolism for the bull. We have merely considered the basic meanings. Do continue further in your research on how the bull has been from the beginning of human existence is a major resource. You will surely appreciate the bull for its significance to us in agriculture, industry and the art.
Bull shows up as a spirit guide when
- You need to be very virile.
- You need strength.
- You need to be alert to danger.
- You need to be contented.
- You need to have wealth.
- You need to have patient.
Call on Bull as a spirit guide when
- You need to create wealth for your life.
- You need to be strong.
- You should be patient.
- You need to be very economical so as to develop your life.
By Flo Saul
Mar 24, 2013