Did life change in the blink of an eye? Dragonflies having flown the earth for a very very long time – remind us to take time to reconnect with our own strength, courage, and happiness! When the dragonfly spirit calls to you, you are being blessed with the wisdom of the ages. One of the first winged insects, dragonflies have inhabited the Earth for over 300 million years. By comparison, evidence of the first humans dates back to just 2.8 million years. The dragonfly’s meaning is to remind us that anything is possible! (check here for more animals that represent strength)
The dragonfly is the helicopter of the insect world. It’s hard to see it (especially when it’s flying at 45 mph) but the dragonfly can navigate in all directions. It can even fly backwards, and through rough winds. It is one of the most powerful navigators among flying insects.
Why Is the Dragonfly a Common Symbol?
The dragonfly is an insect of the Odonata family, its name comes from the Latin libellula meaning “balance”. They have been around for over 300 million years, meaning that people have had plenty of time to engage them in their lives and legends, which has gradually made it a symbol.
Since ancient times the dragonfly has been seen carrying power, fortune, and balance, the latter because it is able to fly in all directions. In addition to this, it is also associated with change, adaptability, and transformation. Because of everything it stands for, it has become a common symbol all over the world, even though in each place they could interpret it differently, they are always good things.
Dragonflies, like owls, have a powerful vision that sets them apart from other creatures, including us. Where humans, and many other animals, have trichromatic vision, which means we see things in combinations of three primary colors: red, green, and blue, dragonflies see the world through up to 30 “primary” colors. Their eyes are far more sensitive to light than ours. Thus, the dragonfly sees things in ways that we do not.
In addition, dragonflies can see nearly 360 degrees. Their special visionary powers are why dragonflies are also symbols of vision and insight. If you ever hear stories from people who have had near-death experiences, one theme that is common to many is that when they passed over, they saw colors that they never knew existed. Perhaps they saw the colors that dragonfly sees?
Adding to the fact that dragonflies are extraordinary insects, they can lift things that are 15-times their body weight. These powers have fascinated scientists because we humans, as of yet, have been unable to duplicate something so extraordinary with our own flying machines.
The Significance of the Dragonfly
The meaning of the dragonfly is something that intrigues, but the truth is that this can vary depending on each continent of the world since each one has a different perspective and is based on their behaviour and lifestyle. However, one thing everyone agrees on is that this insect is a spiritual being connected to the change and light that you must see in yourself.
In Japan, dragonflies are highly revered creatures because it is seen as a being that can protect from harm, and are also used as inspiration for art and poetry. In other cultures, meeting a dragonfly means that they have come across a sign of transformation, joy, noble souls. It is also related to the bonding of air with water.
There are other places where the meaning of the dragonfly is not as positive, as is the case in Sweden, according to its beliefs this insect indicates that a great tragedy is coming. Same in Romania, but here they associate it with evil and black magic, ensuring that they come from the devil. These are some of the few places where they consider this to be a negative element.
The reality is that the Dragonfly Meaning depends on each human being and their desires, the dragonfly is associated with many situations but the person will only see the one that is needed at that time, it is almost always the need for change, improvement, or simply an improvement in their life. This insect is considered a being full of light by the feeling of hope it instills in people and also the confidence that something better will come. In case you saw a dead dragonfly, you might wanna check out our post: Dead Dragonfly Meaning.
Interpretations of the Meaning of the Dragonfly
- Dragonflies often have varying colors, depending upon which angle you look at them. When they glint in the light, the dragonfly will appear a different color than if they stayed in the shadows. So, this symbolizes the need to show your true colors more, and stop trying to hide your best self from the world. Also, it can be interpreted to become more flexible and adaptable, so that you can adjust to new environments quickly.
- More than anything, dragonflies have been linked to transformation, as their colors change as they mature. Like the dragonfly, you too must shed your old skin and transform into a new, more aware being as you gain experience and wisdom. The dragonfly invites us to question our place in life, and not feel afraid to discard our old identity if it no longer serves us.
- Dragonflies start to grow in water and then move into the air and fly. When this spirit animal shows up in your life you may be called to transform and evolve. The symbol of metamorphosis and transformation inspires those who have it as a totem to bring about the changes needed in their lives in order to go to reach their full potential.
- Since the dragonfly can navigate in all directions it had become a symbol of direction and purpose even through rough times. In much the same way that the dragonfly goes on even when we can’t see it, it reminds us to go on with our purpose even when we are not noticed by others around us.
Like the butterfly meaning, the dragonfly is associated with light, transformation, and personal growth. The dragonfly symbolism is varied and depends heavily on people’s beliefs and many of these elements are related to the lifestyle that the insect leads. There are so many positive situations that these are used in some places as inspiration in art and literature, they are also used as a guide in design due to their shape, behaviour, and colors.
The dragonfly symbolizes great transformation and personal growth and invites you to dive into your emotions for a fuller understanding of yourself and your personal journey.
Here are some of the things that a dragonfly symbolizes and you’ll understand why so many people love and get happy when they see one.
a) Change: the dragonfly is characterized by moving several times, which means that each time a new stage of her life begins, each of these she knows that she is closer to its end and therefore takes them and lives her life to the fullest. Changes are always better; you can always start over differently. You can always get your dream back, that’s what dragonflies remind you of.
b) Maturity: Around the world, it is asocial to the change of perspective that leads to emotional, mental maturity and the beginning of understanding the meaning of life, achieving renewal, and being able to see the positive things. Due to its ability to fly through the water the dragonfly can represent the act of going further and being able to see the complications that can occur and face it with maturity.
c) Poise: Dragonflies are capable of flying elegantly and powerfully, flap their wings 30 times per minute, and can still fly in all directions, which leads to the balance it has. This is why Dragonfly Meaning is associated with balance and power and every time we see one we associate it with the arrival of this in our lives. They have a balance between the mental and the emotional.
d) Adaptability: They are asocial with adaptability due to the whole process that includes their metamorphosis. These range from being in an egg, becoming a nymph who lives a long time of her life in the water breathing for her bronchi and feeds on tadpoles, and then becomes a beautiful dragonfly. This lasts between three and six years, to only remain a dragonfly, for a few weeks that change forces you to experience at least 15 moults of skin until your wings appear.
All this means that they adapt to this whole process of change and understand that it is necessary to survive. Proving that adaptability is what we need to be what we have always wanted to be, so it represents and symbolizes all this.
e) Joy and lightness of being: In Japanese painting, dragonflies represent new light and joy. It also symbolizes and exemplifies the virtue of living the moment, enjoying and living lightly, being aware of who you are, what you are doing, where you are, and what you want to be.
On the other hand, its lightness inspires those who admire it to use their ability to be flexible and highly adaptable in any situation. If you identify with the one you should consider whether your life has enough light and clarity.
The Spiritual Meaning
In the spiritual area of Dragonfly Meaning, it symbolizes the essence of change, winds, messages of wisdom and enlightenment, and communication from the elemental world, of the spirits of nature. The dragonfly’s energy is connected to the spirit of nature, which makes it part of the fairy kingdom so that as a spiritual animal not only represents the symbolism of change and light but also reflects the wisdom of transformation and the adaptability of life.
This is considered a magical being that comes from the realm of emotions and leads us to deepen within our feelings in a light and cheerful way. Also warning us with his presence of those illusions and deceptions that our subconscious can make us believe. The spirit of this wonderful animal invites people to maintain a more positive perspective regardless of the situation that occurs.
The spiritual meaning of dragonflies also provides very powerful mediation tools, proving that we should be able to visualize the positive and see the good side of things. Dragonflies have a very short life and this is related to the need to live to the fullest, which is a good idea for us; living to the fullest because life is limited.
There are many things that this insect represents, most are related to positive situations of change, transformation, good luck and emotional intelligence, who use it as an element in their life see improvements for all the good that it brings. In case any present is presented in your house take advantage of it and take into account all the positive changes it will bring. Its spiritual effect is so incredible that it is recommended to have some image of the dragonfly somewhere at work, the house, in the study area, or in the hall, if it is in the form of a much better pendant so that you always have it with you.
Dreaming of Dragonflies
It’s not something that usually happens very often but it’s not impossible, often dreaming of a dragonfly means the change and regeneration you want to have in you or that maybe you’re already having. It can mean that you’ve managed to balance your mental body with your emotional body and that you finally achieved the transformation of your life.
On the other hand, it can relate to the fact that you are having a vision of life that is not correct but is created by your mind, which makes it an illusion. It can also mean that you find yourself in situations that are unreliable and irresponsible and failing would be inevitable, so you should look beyond what you perceive and know if you are doing something that will benefit your life.
There is also the belief that the presence of a dragonfly in a dream represents the most unrealizable yearning that is the desire to recover youth and all the illusion that has been lost over the years due to situations you have experienced. It’s usually a dream that talks about feeling young again, with illusions, and that comes surrounded by magic and fantasy.
When you dream of a dragonfly, it can also mean that change is coming for you. This change can come in so many forms, from the mundane to the tragic. You may have something new come into your life, or you may have something taken away. Either way, the dragonfly tells you to weather it out and adapt quickly.
As you can see in the fact of dreaming of dragonflies fit the most diverse interpretations that are related to your current mood, the vitality you feel, the creativity that is beginning to emerge, and the illusions that you maintain. So when someone comes into your life, you just have to think about what improvement you’re really looking forward to and going for it.
Now, if you’re actually having really good days and you’re already having significant improvements in your life, the presence of a dragonfly in your dreams can mean that you’re announcing the change you’ve worked so hard for.
The Connection Between Dragonfly and Death
The relationship of the presence of a dragonfly and death does not have great relevance as the number of positive things that this insect can bring to our being, however, in some cultures they are believed to be negative beings that bring with them misfortunes to people, this is the case of Sweden and Romania, where many of its inhabitants believe that it has something to do with black magic.
Now, metaphorically speaking a dragonfly if can represent death but not in a negative way but rather speaks of the death of negative situations that we have in our lives that are difficult but that will change because of the process of change that we will give to our lives, that is, dies the bad and initiates the good.
Another thing in which it is associated with death is the belief that some deceased loved one was born in a dragonfly just to give us a message or show us that he is with us, this is believed because they are highly spiritual beings. That is why many people claim that they feel a certain presence in their lives when a dragonfly appears, it is explained as a sense of contact with the mystical and divine world (read more about Dragonfly Meaning Death).
What Does it Mean When a Dragonfly Lands on You
Following what we have mentioned above, the presence of a dragonfly in our lives brings with it positive elements that will show a change in it. It is believed that when one perches on your arm or flies around you you will receive good news or bring luck to your life. In fact, just fluttering near you means something good will happen to you.
What does it mean when a dragonfly lands on you, is to give proof dragonflies are there to feel some appreciation for – to feel awe in their beauty, glad that 200 million years of evolution of near-perfect design & function left them smaller through the eons but otherwise unchanged.
The dragonfly flies only a short stage of its life, the rest remains a nymph, that is why the fact that it appears around you even if you have so little time to do it means something incredible. This is not to say that your presence will bring a miracle but is the representation you need to have a little hope for change and improvement.
If you don’t have the joy that a dragonfly flies around you, don’t worry about it, you can use elements that represent it and just include it in your life, this can be a painting, some necklace, a shirt, or anything where you have the image. You can place it in places in your home like the hall, where you work, or in your room, the important thing is that you understand the power that it has and all the positive that comes with it.
Look for what’s accurate and right in your life. Get your power back. Follow the dragonfly to the inner place of your own being where magic lives on and drinks from that power that is yours. That fortress belongs to you.
Dragonfly Quotes & Facts
“Time is for dragonflies and angels. The former live too little and the latter live too long.”
– James Thurber
“It’s very far away,
It takes about half a day to get there,
If we travel by dragonfly.
– Jimi Hendrix, Spanish Castle Magic
“Magic is seeing the wonder in nature’s every little thing, seeing how wonderful the fireflies are and how magical are the dragonflies.”
– Ama Vanniarachchy – (read more about firefly symbolism)
“If you are old and you wish to be young again if only for a moment, try and identify a dragonfly.”
– Simon Barnes
“The distant mountains,
Are reflected in the eye,
Of the dragonfly.”
– Kobayashi Issa
“Deep in the sun-searched growths, the dragonfly,
Hangs like a blue thread loosened from the sky.”
– Dante Gabriel Rossetti
“The beauteous dragonfly’s dancing,
By the waves of the rivulet glancing,
She dances here and she dances there,
The glimmering, glittering flutterer fair,
Full many a beetle with loud applause
Admires her dress of azure gauze,
Admires her body’s bright splendour,
And also her figure so slender.”
– Heinrich Heine
“Hey, Miss Dragonfly,
I see you look at me with your beautiful eyes,
You must be wondering what type of creature am I.”
– Ziggy Marley, Dragonfly
Facts about Dragonflies
- Dragonflies were some of the first winged insects to evolve, some 300 million years ago. Modern dragonflies have wingspans of only two to five inches, but fossil dragonflies have been found with wingspans of up to two feet.
- In their larval stage, which can last up to two years, dragonflies are aquatic and eat just about anything—tadpoles, mosquitoes, fish, other insect larvae, and even each other (however, they are also prey to other animals, such as birds)
- Dragonflies catch their insect prey by grabbing it with their feet. They’re so efficient in their hunting that, in one Harvard University study, the dragonflies caught 90 to 95 per cent of the prey released into their enclosure.
- Nearly all of the dragonfly’s head is the eye, so they have an incredible vision that encompasses almost every angle except right behind them.
- Dragonflies, which eat insects as adults, are great control of the mosquito population. A single dragonfly can eat 30 to hundreds of mosquitoes per day.
- A dragonfly called the globe skinner has the longest migration of any insect—11,000 miles back and forth across the Indian Ocean.