August 4, 2008 § Leave a comment
It’s a metaphor of human bloody existence, a dragon. And if that wasn’t bad enough, it’s also a bloody great hot flying thing. ~ Captain Vimes ponders his problems (Terry Pratchett, Guards! Guards!)
Dragons are believed to be huge, fearsome, and usually winged creatures who breathe fire. In the famous story “The Hobbit”, Smaug was a dragon who guarded the Dwarven riches in Lonely Mountain. Bilbo Baggins a hobbit, Gandalf a wizard, and a band of 13 dwarves go on an adventure to reclaim the mountain of the dwarves and the riches that are deep inside.
Then came Harry Potter, and in 2006 a previously unknown dinosaur species was named in honor of Harry Potter. This dragon-like dinosaur, the remains of which were found by a group of friends in South Dakota in Hell Creek Formation in 2004, was officially named Dracorex Hogwartsia (“The Dragon King of Hogwarts.”).
Dracorex Hogwartsia lived about 66 million years ago, just a million years short of the extinction of all dinosaurs. Its flat, almost storybook-style dragon head has overturned everything paleontologists believed they knew about the dome-head dinos called pachycephalosaurs.
They were perhaps able to spit fire by some chemical process, which would need them to eat sulfur to be able to produce it. And they may have flown, or rather float, by filling themselves with gas, and their wings doing the rest of the job. What if such dragons ate tigers in china? What if it is the origin of the tiger/dragon artworks in China?
The Dragon is a symbol of wisdom, power, and luck in Chinese culture. Unlike western Dragons, oriental Dragons are usually seen as benevolent and kind. Dragons have long been a symbol in Chinese folklore and art. Temples and shrines have been built to honor them.
Through the symbol of the Dragon, many Chinese see divine attributes which they aspire to themselves. The Chinese are sometimes referred to as “descendents of the dragon.” The dragon is held in reverence and respect. It is considered unseemly to defile a depiction of a dragon.
Researching and learning about totems in the Twisted Hairs lineage, I found dragon associated with snake, like it is in Nordic traditions. The symbol of either a snake or a dragon devouring its tail is quite common: the Ouroberos. In Mayan culture, an ancient nagual energy choreography exists, named the “Flight of the Feathered Serpent”. As far as I remember, that choreography first sets the 4 holders, then the 4 movers within that cross: spirit, body, physical, mind, heart, third eye, self-concepts, intuition.
In Thailand and Bali, dragons do not have wings. In North Thailand, in the Mekong River on the border with Laos, thousands of people flock each October to see the famous Pianaa fire-balls. They believe the caves under the river are inhabited with a “city” of these huge snake-creatures. Apparently in reverence to Buddha, these snakes put on a fascinating show of “fireballs”, thousands of them coming to the surface of the river and floating into the air.
That makes perfect sense, because a 7-headed Naga serpent protected the Buddha during his meditation. I am the unity, I am.