What Does A Lion Symbolize

lion meaning and what it Symbolizes

Symbolism of a lion and understanding of ancient history

To answer the question of what does a lion symbolize I have covered ancient history, spiritual implications and the main characteristics of a lion.

The lion symbolizes a positive time in life, this fierce animal is connected to our inner urges in most ancient and biblical texts. The power, desire, control and possession of a lion is often seen as a positive attribute. The lion symbolizes the following: courage, justice, power, strength, wisdom, pride, dignity, dominating, authority, material wealth and riches.

As I am sure you are aware the lion itself is predominantly associated with strength. As the lion is nocturnal can also indicate that we are connected to our own conscious thoughts. The hunting of a lion often happens at night and can mean that you are hiding something in your own mind, additionally, the lioness is referred to as what an animal of the moon (lunar). Lyons often connect to how we balance things in life. In regards to the spiritual message, the lion brings with it the need to stop overstretching ourselves but try to balance matters and remain strong.

As I am sure you know lions are all around us. There are lions on statutes, banking and on logos, I have seen many countries and organizations use the lion as a brand image. Why? The lion is strong it overcomes competition and has a fighting spirit.

Turning again to symbolism the lion can often be connected to counseling, and understanding how we will be if we are stripped of modern life. The lion can imply that we need to fight for what we believe in. The lion, unicorn, Phoenix, and Dragon are groups of mammals which are found in numerical patterns and also outlined in the Bible. I will discuss the biblical symbolism of the lion bit later on, but for now, I wanted to talk about the fact the lion in many religious texts is connected to a supporting shield.

Lion Symbol Meaning

What does the lion symbolize in psychology?

Turning to psychology, Carl Jung observed in his books that the counterbalancing of the lion stands for the inner stress and power we process. Britain has a lion as it’s coat of arms. In this sense, it is like balancing the female and male counterparts. If we think of the phrase known as “the lion share” this means that because the lion hunts in a group, they divide the prey into parts, and I am sure you are aware that the male lion often gets more food. Therefore, this term is connected to how we can overpower outcomes and possess material possessions in life.

Lion symbols have been in use for a long time. We only have to look at ancient Egypt and the goddesses known as Sekhmet is represented by a lioness figure, which I will explain further on. This wonderful goddess was used to protect people - especially the rulers. When the formation of cities, kingdoms, and countries the lion symbol gained a larger presence and to date, the lion maintains a symbolic role in various nations. For example, in Singapore, the lion’s head is a distinctive and recognized as a national feature. In Trafalgar Square in London, a set of four bronze lions each weighing seven tonnes reside as an emblem of power.

What is the lion symbol in the tarot deck?

The lion is further featured in the tarot waite pack as the card “strength” from all this it is clear that the lion is connected to our own internal uncurious mind. The lion symbolism is also connected to our own lives and has affected human beings since the dark ages. Symbolism is often be used by communities in order to communicate certain aspects in life. To this end, the Lion symbol is prominent and universally accepted. I’m going to spend a bit of time providing an overview of the lion from a symbolism in various contexts.

What does the lion symbolize in astrology?

As a symbol, the lion is known as the sun. This is due to the astral sign Leo, the fire signs are Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius. The process and predominate of fire signs is unique in that they are high grades of gifts that God provides to man. The fire signs give human beings development and growth in life. This ties into zodiac symbols, basically the lion brings light to darkness. Secondly, fire cannot be contained in one source. The fire itself is uncontrollable, unpredictable and volatile. This describes the people born under the “sun” sign. One thought that might help is that fire signs per say indicate all the opportunities we explore in life. The lion has been used in much mythology and cultures for thousands of years.

There is much symbolism of worshipping gods connected to a lion. The lion is the zodiac sign of Leo. In astrology, the sign of Leo also symbolizes similar traits as in heraldic art such as loyalty, self-esteem, intuition, fiery, passion, loyalty, control, and generosity. People born under the sun sign Leo are most likely confident, dominant and independent. A Leo person tends to expose creativity and influential force. People born in this sign have internal power to apply positive or negative changes in their own lives and the life of others who surround them. They’re loyal and protective around friends and family. The Leo’s personality is often strong and serious. In fact, people born in this sign are more focused and easy-going when entering the later stages of life. Leo’s I like to say (as I know quite a few) are social and prideful around people like themselves. They also have a strong sense of identity.

What does the lion symbolize in banking and currency?

Many times the lion is seen on currency and a representation of banking logos. Also, lions are seen on many sculptures, statues, and ornaments. This led me to ask: is there a hidden meaning? The lion is a sign of the sun and Leo in astrology is the fifth sign of the zodiac. Leo is one of three fire signs including Sagittarius and Aries. The lion is also seen in the tarot cards of the Major Arcana, and temperance. In this card, the lion represents air and strength. The lion is also used in masonic circles and in alchemy represents the symbol of sulfur.

What does the lion mean in Egyptian theology?

If we turn to Egyptian theology the lion is seen as the Sekhmet goddesses head. The sekhment was seen as the lioness and she was a feared by the Egyptians. She was worshipped to protect against wars. This goddess was known as for being fierce. There are many statues in Egypt such as the Sekmet which is found in the temple of Mud at Luxor. The lion in this respect is a sacred animal to the Egyptians - and Sekmet was considered the mother of miysis. It was forbidden to hunt the lion on feast days. In Tibetan art the culture around lions is symbolized as a white lion.

This is known as the snow-lion. Lions are one of the most powerful animals in the animal kingdom and in Egypt this was no exception. As I have already discussed the lion is the king of all animals out there. And it’s no surprise that lions have a symbolic meaning associated with strength. The fact that they’re nocturnal creatures means that the lions symbolize authority and command over the unconscious mind. Egyptian people see the lion as a representation of the sun and this is due to the fact that the lion is on the Egyptian goddess also known as the Eye of Ra. It’s believed that she protects the good and kills the wicked and evil. I hope this provides an overview of what the lion means in Egyptian terms.

Lion symbol in culture

What is the symbolic messages that lions offer?

One of the reasons I began this article is because I keep seeing lions everywhere. If you too are experiencing this then know that the lions indicates you need to have the courage and have faith in yourself. Stand up for yourself and use your natural powers in life. There is a message here: try to keep your head above water when times get hard. Conduct yourself with dignity and never give up. Protect what’s yours with everything you have. Show authority in order to earn people’s respect. Lead others with a loving heart and compassion. Lions often indicate personality and destiny.

What is the general symbolism and meaning of lions?

Another interesting fact about lions is that they’re considered as solar animal symbols. Connected to the sun. However, they’re primarily nocturnal creatures conducting their hunting activity mostly during the night. Also, lions are considered to be lunar animals. In most cultures, lions symbolize balance and sound judgment. They share the world of night and day and bear a message of prudence to us.

In simpler words, lions ask us to not overdo in specific areas of our lives but rather keep a clear mind and overall balance in our everyday activities. But besides symbolizing strength, lions are also the symbol of wisdom, power, courage, dignity, domination, ferocity and authority. In some ways, Lions might also denote an authority that can feel overpowering or some conflicting relationship with authority and power. Lions are considered a solar being, in ancient history and at times signifies external power, authority, and forces that command some parts of your life. Alternatively, a lion that enters your life can often appear when you must deal with some annoying person such as your boss at work or a troubled partner.

What does the lion symbolize in ancient Greek mythology?

Lions can be seen in many myths and also the head of monsters in various Greek mythologies, for example, Nemean lion is the only Greek monster. This lion was eventually killed by Heracles because he took a women hostage in a cave near a place called Nemean. Another interesting fact, that in Greek mythology there are paintings where lions drew chariots of the following gods and goddesses: Dionysus, Cybele, Phoebus, and Artemis. In ancient Greece, the symbolic meaning of lions is associated mostly with protection. People believe that lions are the guardians of the dead, thrones, palaces, shrines, and doorways. It’s also believed they protect the heart and home.

What does the lion symbolize in Hinduism and Buddhism?

The lion is the personification of Vishnu while in Buddhism, lions represent strength, wisdom, and consistency. Lions have symbolic meaning in alchemy too. It’s associated with the highly idealistic and prized features of gold.

What does the lion symbol mean in England?

In England, the symbolism of the Lion is often seen in heraldic art and symbolizes honor, loyalty, courage, strength, leadership. The lion is the common token of English sovereigns because of the power traits. A famous king of England known as Richard the 1st was called the lionhearted due to how brave he was in fighting wars. Lions have in England represented strength and can be found on the English coat of arms and on the currency.

What is the spiritual meaning of lions?

As I have already covered the spiritual meaning of lions is associated with strength, courage, and ability to overcome challenges. The lion’s presence might also symbolize wilderness and the inability to control one's natural instincts, or in other words, the inability to tame the wild side of ones personality. Also, lions symbolize the intense emotions that are difficult to control such as anger, fear, and aggression. As a spirit animal or totem, a lion represents the following: Personal power, strength, assertiveness. Domination – predatory feeling such as aggression. The personal issues and struggles to deal with feelings. The ability to sense danger and threatening situation.

How do lions live, interact and hunt?

Lions have traditionally been depicted as the king of the jungle. In ancient times, lions were popular in Europe, Africa, and Asia. Wild lions are quite rare, and many in captivity but they are still commonly found in the Gir Forest in India and in Southern and Central Africa. Lions can be different sizes, live in a range of habitats, and eat a variety of food. The most famous of all is the African lion.

This lion is about 4.5 to 6.5 feet, that is, from its head to the rump with a tail measuring about 39.5 inches maximum and 26.25 on the minimum. The average lion weighs between 120 to 191 kilograms. The lions found in Asia are a bit bigger with tails measuring 23.62 to 35.43 inches, 6.5 to 9.18 feet from head to rump and a weight of about 300 to 500 lbs. In general, the males are larger as compared to their female counterparts with a distinctive mane, this obviously makes them look impressive to the females - and intimidating to other males. During territorial fights, the mane can also act as a shield.

Asia lions are concentrated in the Gir Forest National Park which is located in India. It is on an 877.37 square miles of land with the land having grasslands, forest, rocky hills and scrubs jungle. African lions are found in Mozambique, Angola, the central Africa republic, Botswana, southern Sudan and other sub-Saharan African countries like Kenya. They are found in areas where there are grasslands, scrub or open woodlands. When it comes to food, Asiatic lions eat large animals such as nilgai, goats, buffaloes, sambhar, and chitai but they also have an appetite for eating small animals. African lions generally eat large animals which are found in their habitat which compose of: wildebeests, antelopes, and zebras.

Lions live in groups which are normally referred to as pride. Interestingly, the pride for Asiatic lions are completely different from those of the African lions. The African pride comprises of a dozen females, three males, and their young ones with some pride comprising of a total of 40 members depending on the number of cubs in the pack. The Asiatic pride divide themselves into two groups. Firstly, the males and then the females have their own separate pride. These two feelings of pride come together during the mating season.

The female lion in a pride is normally related to one another. They tend to stay in the same pride of which they are born. For the males, when they come of age, they are forced to move out, wander and meet other males to form their own pride. Females are the main hunters of their pride and thus they normally form hunting parties in order to trap their prey. If an animal is larger than the lion such as a buffalo then they are normally killed for food. We all know that the jaws of the lion are used to pounce on the prey’s neck. The male lion at times kill the male cubs in the pride to avoid competition.

What famous icons have lions on them?

Lions have been known to be the most iconic creature in history with their behaviors being important to the human race since time immemorial. Some of the animals species have even transcended the notoriety of their species to make a mark in the human culture. Here are some of the famous icons that have lions on them. Leo, The MGM Lion: MGM, a Hollywood film studio used a lion since 1917 as its mascot with Leo being the most dominant of them all over the years which has been used since 1957.

Tsavo Maneaters:

It refers to a pair of male lions which lived in Kenya in the 1898 and killed over 35 railroad constructors, creating fear and defection thus halting the construction which only resumed after they were gunned down and killed. Currently, their skulls are at Chicago Field Museum.

The man-eater of njombe:

This lion was a pride of lions that worked for hand in hand to kill more than a thousand people in southern Tanzania. This occurred between 1937 and 1947 due to lack of prey. They were later exterminated by a game warden. Yes, a sad state to be honest! Christian the lion: The Christian lion was a pet for Australian travelers Ace Bourke and John Randell who bought when it was still a cub. They stayed with it in their apartment until it grew big to be kept there and they were forced to relocate to the countryside of Kenya. One year later, they were reunited with the animal in Kenya, with the video being played on twitter showing the special relationship between man and the lion.

Cecil: I am sure you have seen this on Facebook where pictures of a dentist who killed a lion were being shared. Cecil was killed by an American dentist Walter Palmer and this caused the photo to make headlines globally. People were outraged! Lovely cecil was a special lion who had no fear of park vehicles thus allowing visitors to the Hwange National Park to gain a close view of him. I don’t even to this day know why this dentist killed this lion. It is very sad.

Bibi the Marsh Lion:

Bibi was a lion at Masai Mara in Kenya, who was, in 2015 found dead from poisoning. He was a member of the Marsh pride which featured for over a decade on a BBC popular show, Big Cat Diary.

Chauvet Cave lions:

Its painting was discovered in 1994 in Southern France as part of the largest collection of prehistoric artwork. The lions were larger the current lions available in today’s world. They were extinct more than 25,000 years ago.


Aslan is the Turkish word for lion and is an allegory for Christ. According to the book “Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis” Aslan is the magical talking lion that hides in a secret land, if you have not seen the movie then I urge you to watch as it is associated with how the lion builds strength.

What does lions mean in dreams?

In dreams, a lion symbolizes how we feel at the moment. For example, if you dream of a lion, it implies that you’re feeling powerful and able to defend yourself from enemies. To dream of lions might also symbolize your wish to get more familiar with how your feel exactly and tame your intense feelings, needs, and wilderness if necessary.

Only recently I watched a nature program on lions, observing lions in their natural environment it is clear that their natural dignity and strength is shown in the lion pack. In fact, lions are connected with being strong and powerful, meaning their power is only natural. When the lion comes to you as an animal totem or in some form such as the fact you keep seeing the lion signs - it’s an emblem for you to step into your natural birthright of strength and absolute power. The lion appears in one’s life in order to remind us of our natural strong natural features.

Lions in dreams are a common symbol. To dream of being chased by a lion denotes the inner struggle you’re having. And also reveals your hidden rage and aggression. To dream about your lion spirit animal might point to rage you’re feeling for someone or aggression that’s pointed back at you. Lion is the symbol of courage and personal strength and power: As a spirit animal, the lion is mostly associated with courage and representation of our personal strength and power. If the lion seems powerful to you, its presence as a spirit guide may be interpreted as a positive representation of your personal power and self-confidence. The lion also portrays some of your best qualities such as courage, smartness, strength, and assertiveness.

As you might know, the lion dominates over other animals in the animal kingdom. Remember the expression: “The lion is the king of the jungle”? This quote was probably inspired by the intimidating presence and roar of the lion. Meaning, if a lion appears in spiritual form to you, it reveals your natural leadership attitude and strong character. As a spiritual animal, the lion is the recipient of the award for the most persistent fighter in the face of obstacles and life challenges.

Lions in dreams warn you of possible danger and new challenges in life: A spirit animal such as the lion might warn you of possible danger in life or warn you of a difficult situation coming. The lion, for example, can warn you of new challenges and obstacles. If a lion appears to you it’s probably trying to guide your way and boost your courage.

In summary, Lions have been used as symbols for many years in cultures across Africa, Asia, and Europe. They were initially depicted using graphic representation as organized hunters with strategies and in y research represent great strength, power, and skills. The lion symbolizes in dreams or in spiritual terms personal issues and struggles and hidden anger. To see a lion spirit guide (such as a totem) could represent a need to control anger or hidden emotions and overarching aggressive impulses.

Alternatively, if you keep seeing the lion ”symbol” it is advised to pay attention to what people say or how they act before you accuse or strike them of something. You might also need to express your suppressed feelings (about others) and communicate more openly about how you feel in order to reduce your inner frustration.

By Florance Saul
Apr 29, 2018