Source: Latvian Symbols – Latviesu Simboli – Elder Mountain Dreaming
Symbols of the four Seasons
Spring Equinox – Dawn The sign of Dawn or the rising sun sign symbolizes relationship to the top, to the heavenly world, it is the knowledge of humankind and the ideal picture of aggregation model. This sign, symbol language is sunrise and sunset graphical representation. Associated with the constant rhythm of the sun, with its eternal celestial mountain road, this is a sign of the world order for our children, because it combines an understanding of the past, present and future.
Summer Solstice – The Sun Goddess Strong sunlight is the symbolic representation of the life force culmination and fulfillment. Development of harmony symbol as a symbol of the highest mountain, sky, full of life-giving force, glory and power. Jānis – The Summer Solstice God sometimes referred to as a son of God. His Midsummer’s Night festival (which is called “Jāņi” takes place on the evening of June 23rd and is the most important festival of the year for Latvians. Once every year, Jānis at midsummer came to bring luck and fertility to the people of Latvia.
Autumn Equinox – Ths God Jumis Fertility sign. Jumim surrenders to the end of spring and summer, and its a double or twin sign because it means two together, the harvest season. Ancient farmhouses adorned and protected the Juma horses who worked in tandem or a couple. This sign means fertility, strength, wealth, success and good luck. The word “Jumis” attributed to the word “Jumal” which means “God.”
Winter Solstice, The Wells symbol – this symbol is character of endings, completeness, that which forms the void or Sākotne. This mark combines with the top down and the sky with underground water. This sign herds a new solar year on the Winter Solstice, a sign of the sun and the world.
Zalktis (Serpent Goddess) is one of the ancient symbols of a deity in Latvia. Like all serpent goddesses, she is associated with wisdom, which makes her an elder or grandmother goddess. She is significantly connected with healing, especially the healing of the soul. Today she is still know for general well-being and health, judging from the popularity of the symbol. This sign dates back to the Iron Age.
Zalktis (Serpent Goddess) – The Adder – symbolizes wisdom and connected to animism which can access worldwide knowledge. The white ones are the most powerful, and it is signed for one of the Mara’s talisman because Mara could transform into the healing snake. Also this sign is available on women’s clothes as protection, making it a symbol for sacred crafts and ancient arts.
Saule (Sun Goddess) the Supreme Goddess and one of the oldest Goddesses of the Slavs and Balkan, a time when the sun meant feminine and life giving. Now we associate the Goddess with the moon, but in prehistory she was the sun. Today as the goddess she rules both the earth’s fertility and woman’s fertility. She is a patroness goddess of those who have hard lives, the unlucky, including orphans. The design was originally a simple circle, which evolved over the years into many variations. Sun designs now usually consist of eight parts for the four seasons and half way points between the solstices and equinoxes.
We see Sky in day and sky at night, the ancient Latvian folklore specially points that central star is the Goddess Saule (Sun Goddess). She is the symbol of eternal movement and life. In the line of other stars, Sun Goddess is placed in one of the highest hierarchical rating. Sun sees everything and knows everything. In the territory of Latvia Sun symbols are found on bone tools already in late Stone Age. Rhomb or cube is also seen as symbol of Sun and is seen on the ceramics of Middle Stone Age.
Moon is presented as the consort of the Sun Goddess and also the Sun has all relatives such as sun fathers, sun mothers, sun daughters and sons and the children of the sun goddess. Behind other symbols, the Sun Goddess symbol is placed to be in the most honorable position any symbol can be. It is also because Sun Goddess is represented as mother of all children.
All drawings of Sun are always circle typed (egg, ball, golden acorn etc), who symbolizes the Sun’s trajectory. At the simplest level, Sun can be displayed as a circle. All the detailed Sun projections have one common point – the center of this circle is always double crossed or specially pointed out. The detail count of Sun symbol are countless, for a common is supposed to be detailed multi-angle – eight-sided symbol, but also there are simple four-angle symbol.
In Latvian art the motive of Sun is displayed on every possible items. If Sun is displayed more than few times in one row, it symbolizes special magical productivity and warmness rituals. Symbol of Sun is specially used in women’s clothes and jewelry, most of the Sun symbols are also found on those tools that is used for own goods made.
The Midnight Sun, the Dark Goddess (now called the Star) – This is third most important ancient symbol is the Night Sun (star). It has huge dark and underworld connections and the protection from evil of the underworld. The drawings of stars have a magical meaning in Latvian folklore and it means you understand the secrets of magic. If your bed sheets are covered with star symbols then bed sheet protects the dreamer from evil wandering souls. The star symbol is also associated with the medicine wheel, the straight or turned cross style.
Simplest form of star is simple cross which symbolizes fire and the light. Pagan Latvians believes that magical rituals can be performed with this symbol and it often has a great meaning to those who use it in a sacred way. The Cross symbol in Latvian folklore has eight or six stars. Also at the Winter Solstice (now called Christmas), this is one of the only surviving symbols to honor the winter time ceremonies and celebrations. Many Slavic and Balkan countries in Eastern Europe will use the Midnight Sun (star) when caroling and singing folk songs going form house to house or village to village.
Auseklis (The Morning Star, Guardian Star) is the symbol of the morning star, the usher of the new day. Auseklis is thought to protect people from the forces of evil which roam at night. He is represented by the complex eight-sided star, which must be drawn in one continuous line without lifting your hand to receive the benefit of his blessings.