The mouse, such a small, seemingly insignificant creature, is one of the forms taken by the great God Apollo. There is a dichotomy with this symbolism, representing the idea of the God in both his aspects—as destroyer and as protector. Apollo, like the mouse, destroys by spreading plague, whereas in his guise as the Harvest God it falls to Apollo to save the crop from the attentions of the little creature. In Europe, the mouse was symbolic of the soul leaving the body, an idea shared by other tiny creatures. It was believed that the soul/mouse escaped through the mouth as the dying person breathed their last breath. This supposition was so well founded that it even has witness reports. The mouse also appears with the great elephant-headed Indian God Ganesh. Curiously, the huge Ganesh is described as “riding” this tiny animal. The physical improbability of such an arrangement does not matter, however, since this is a symbol of Ganesh’s humility.
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Animals main description
THE SECRET SYMBOLS OF THE ANIMAL REALM
This section not only encompasses real animals, insects, and birds, but also takes a look at some of the more fantastical creatures that occupy a significant space in our collective psyche. The attributes of all our animals, real or otherwise, give us an incredibly rich and diverse catalog of symbols. Sometimes, the reasons behind these symbolic meanings are due to historical misconceptions about the habits of certain creatures, and probably date back to a time when we were less well informed than we are now. These curiosities—such as the beaver being a symbol of chastity because of the notion that it would rather eat its own testicles than be captured—give us a delightful insight into the minds of our ancestors.