Dragonfly Facts, Symbolism, Meanings and Photos
The Dragonfly Insect Facts
The dragonfly is a seemingly magical insect.
- They have been around on the earth for a long, long time - anywhere between 180 and 300 million years.
- They have broad bodies and large eyes, with sharp vision, and the ability to track movement up to forty feet away.
- Their feats of flight are remarkable. They can fly forwards, backwards, and can travel as fast as 30 miles per hour.
- They have two phases in their lives: they start out in the water as wingless insects for well over a year and move into the air after growing their beautiful wings.
When they're young, their colors aren't as developed as when they become adults. However, when fully grown, their colors are iridescent and seem to glimmer like jewels, especially on their wings.
Though they might be curious to fly around humans or other animals, they do not sting or bite. That's great considering these creatures are at once very large and incredibly beautiful.
Dragonfly Meaning at a Glance
- deep thoughts are surfacing; listen to them
- moving toward light
- metamorphosis and transformation
Dragonflies carry a lot of meaning. If one comes into your life and gets your attention, the primary symbol of the dragonfly is change.
I had a personal experience with this: one landed in my car and came in through the window when I was travelling at 40 mph! I thought it had died, as it fluttered for a moment and then stopped.
I pulled over to let it out, and it suddenly took flight and flew away.
The chances of this insect flying in though my car window and living through the experience was, for me, a powerful sign that change was going to happen. And it did: I changed the path of my career by enrolling in university a few weeks later!
Other powerful meanings of the dragonfly are strength and adaptibility. These traits have helped the dragonfly survive the test of time as a species on the planet. If they lose one set of wings, they can still fly.
In addition, their eyes have compound lenses allowing them to see 360º - in all directions. They can clean them with the comb-like hairs on their legs.
The dragonfly is also a creature of light. If you find one in your travels, it might be telling you that you need to get out and enjoy the sunshine more, or that you should get yourself near fresh water. These actions can then boost your mental and physical health.
The sunlight reflects their beautiful colors. Many people throughout history attributed this to magic or something mystical. You might want people to only see the impressive, successful part of yourself when they need to see you as a whole person - the good and the not so good.
In that case, you don't want to be "mysterious" - dragonfly symbolism urges you to be yourself and not use tricks or magic to fool people.
The dragonfly is a creature full of wisdom. She teaches that life is about change, that everyone needs to be careful to live their life with clarity and not as an illusion.
Because they are creatures of light, they can help you to use creativity, color, and imagination in your life on a greater level.
You can also look to the dragonfly to help shed light into your own life.
Because dragonflies start out living in the water and eventually come to the surface, this process can be a mirror for what's going on in your life: you might have thoughts coming up that need your attention or that you might need to change your perspective.
Do you see dragonflies where you live?
An Interesting Creature
They dragonfly is such a fascinating creature that different cultures have attributed different characteristics to it.
In some Native American cultures, it can represent the souls of the deceased. In other cultures, stories include how the dragonfly morphed from real dragons - though today, they have nothing to do with dragons; they only share part of their name.
They are such wonderful and peaceful creatures to watch and their curiosity toward humans makes them all the more intriguing.
© 2013 Cynthia Calhoun