The history of fertility symbols
The naked 180 ft Cerne Abbas Giant is thought to be thousands of years old. It is carved out in the chalk downs in the Dorset hillside.
According to an article in the Telegraph, women living near this fertility symbol have an average of three children in their lifetime- a national record at that time. These statistics came from the National Census.
If we step back and examine the religions and traditions of our tribal ancestors, we can explore and undercover the roots of these beliefs. Beliefs like this have been part of our existence for thousands of years. Who knows whether these beliefs get hardwired into the subconscious in some way. Is it not possible that trace energies can be passed down through cell memories. Or is there something more to our consciousness than we fully understand?
Archaeologists have discovered hundreds of Venus figurines across Europe and Siberia. These are stone age art dating back to nearly 500,000 years ago. Although we don’t know for sure, there is a high possibility that these could have been symbols of fertility. It’s easy to see why as many of them exaggerate the pregnant female form.
Around 100,000 years ago, Animism evolved as a focal belief system of African tribes. Animism comes from the Latin anima . This word can be translated as breath, spirit or life. Animists believe that animals, places, rocks, rivers and weather systems and human handiwork had a distinct spiritual essence.
Totemism is a belief system in the expression of spirit or life through things or objects. This system is thought to be around 50, 000 years old.
These beliefs are still held today across indigenous tribes, through a more modern-day belief system (around 30,000 years old) known as Shamanism that included rituals. Shamanism is still practised around the world and is going through a resurgence in the Western world.
Paganism evolved around 13,00 years ago and involved the worship of goddesses or gods. It’s possible that the Cerne Abbas Giant is some form of pagan god. According to folklore, if you have sex on the ‘phallus’, you can cure infertility. Or if a woman sleeps on the figure, she will be blessed with an abundance of offspring.
Before you book your train ticket and dig out your tattered old tent; I’m not recommending this approach personally.
Although I’m very interested in the unknown impact of symbolism and the effect it might have on intention and consciousness. Specifically in relation to my interest in fertility. Many of us possess good luck charms, wear symbolic jewellery or collect crystals.
There are elements to our experiences of things and material objects that can not be explained in simple conscious terms. Panpsychism is a Greek philosophy that has recently attracted academic interest through research into consciousness. This belief system has the view that everything material, however small, has an element of individual consciousness.
When we focus our intention on an external object with the belief that it can help us fall pregnant, this might just be tapping into the placebo effect. And that is good enough to improve the percentage chances of falling pregnant.
So I believe incorporating symbols and object into our fertility or healing journey can’t do any harm. It may help us to focus, which mean we can let our worries go and relax. And we know that relaxation can help the body fall pregnant.