Bull Symbolism & Meaning (+Totem, Spirit & Omens)

bull standing

Due to its impressive presence and masculinity, the Bull has been an essential idol for many ancient cultures. The Bull symbolism is linked to fighting ability and male fertility ever since prehistoric times. It is also a necessary sign of abundance. Let’s see what does a bull symbolizes by diving into its spirituality.

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Bull Symbolism and Meaning

The Bull meaning is deeply related to solar energies, determination, strength, and, of course, virility. Bull symbols have been depicted since prehistoric times and can be found in ancient art, literature, astronomy, and astrology.

As an animal symbolizing strength, the bull became the subject of many ancient religions being worshipped throughout the world. Both solar and lunar sign, the bull has given its name to one of the oldest constellations, the Taurus. 

Bull astrology is linked to the agriculture calendar, signifying spring, a season of rebirth. Seen as a symbol of wealth and abundance, the bull was often sacrificed during ancient rituals, people hoping to secure the gods’ goodwill.

bull standing

The bull also stands as a symbol of stubbornness, ferocity, tyranny, brutality. When it comes to bull-taming, the meaning is that, with determination, one can overpower the primordial forces.

Also significant is the bullhead symbol. Associated with the sun and gods’ power, the bull horn symbolism speaks of solar energies and life. The bull horn’s meaning is correlated to the sunbow.

Whether we speak about what does bull means in literature or its symbolism in art, this impressive creature inspired artists for centuries. In paintings or sculptures, the bull is always depicted as a sign of pure strength and masculinity.

Bull Native American Symbolism

To understand what does the bull means for the Native American folks, we must consider the economic importance of this magnificent beast. The bull was an essential resource for these people; therefore, it was regarded as an omen of stability, safety, and durability. The white bull was associated with purity and wisdom.

A constant reminder that you have everything you need, the bull was a vital component of the Native American spirituality. The bull spirit animal appeared whenever the tribe required help and guidance on carrying onerous burdens.

The ox symbolism is also prevalent among the Native American tribes. Both ox and bull represent wealth, courage, and overall power, especially on the Earth plane. 

silhouette of two bulls

Their spirits bind to the Earth’s primordial energies representing physical fertility also. The bull’s stubbornness became a symbol of determination. 

Native Americans valued those who stood on their convictions; therefore, the bull borrowed its name to one of the greatest Lakota chiefs, Sitting bull.

Although the skull is a powerful symbol of death, the Native American bull skull meaning is linked to life and prosperity. 

Shamans strongly believed that the bull skull holds the spirits’ secret knowledge; therefore, it was used in all their sacred rituals. 

Bull Eastern Symbolism

In Chinese culture, the bull symbol is linked to farming use, mostly since China was an agricultural society. 

According to the stories told by Chinese peasants, the original oxen were stars. The Emperor of Heaven felt sorry for the starving people and sent the oxen on Earth to message that they would starve no more if they worked hard.

Other myths and legends speak of the Yan Emperor, who was worshipped during the Spring Festival. This influential mythological figure was depicted with the head of an ox. His tribe also had the ox as a totem.

bull portrait

It is believed that the Yan Emperor was the first who built up fields and explained the differences between the five grains.

So what does a bull represent for the Chinese culture? The ox was a crucial sacrificial object to ancestors and gods. It is also the second among the Chinese zodiac signs.

The bull symbolism for Chinese but Tibetan people also is related to strength, success, and wealth. This gentle animal is also the token of perseverance and determination. According to Feng Shui, the bull is considered to bring good luck for the year ahead and fortune in any financial situation.

Bull Christianity symbolism

The ox is an ancient Christian symbol for absolution and life through sacrifice. According to the four Gospels, the ox is one of the manifestations of Jesus Christ. 

The ox symbol meaning in Ezekiel’s vision is all about hard work, burdens, and ultimately, self-sacrifice. Later, the ox was associated with one of the four evangelists, Luke the Evangelist, as his Gospel begins with a priestly sacrifice. 

In Christian art, Luke’s winged ox is part of the tetramorph, an emblematic union of the four evangelists’ symbols. The ox also appears in the Bible next to another powerful Christian symbol, the donkey. 

bull standing

What does the bull symbolize in this case? The symbolism is deep and complex, the ox representing the Jews while the donkey depicts the Gentiles. In all instances, these two animals are shown together. 

This symbolizes the end of separatism and the welcome of a unified world. Also, both ox and donkey were present at Jesus’s birth, meaning that He brought God’s word to both Jews and pagans.

To conclude, the bull symbolism in the Bible is strongly related to hard work and redemption through self-sacrifice. It symbolizes all those who bear a yoke for the greater good.

Bull Celtic Symbolism

The bull is a significant figure in Celtic symbolism. Ritual deposits, artistic representations, place names, or tribal names all indicate this beast’s importance. 

The Celts esteemed oxen for their virility and physical endurance. The entire Celtic world saw the bull as a representation of solar energy.

The bull’s symbolic meaning is tied to fertility, wealth, status, ancestry, and kinship. Druids used to sacrifice white bulls during their prophetic rituals or gathered mistletoe from which they made a cure for infertility.

A Celtic clan was judged by the size of their herds, especially by the bulls’ strength. These were seen as a sign of luxury.

two bulls

The bull was also one of the signs of the Celtic zodiac. An interesting fact is that gender plays an essential role in this zodiac. 

While the bull is associated with the masculine and solar-focused, the cow (female) is strongly connected to the Moon and represents the Sacred Feminine.

But what do cows symbolize in Celtic mythology and culture? The cow represents the goddess Brigit who governs Earth, motherhood, health, and nurturing. 

Like other cultures, a cow’s spiritual meaning is connected to abundance, fertility, potential, and, more important, life’s beginning.

Bull African Symbolism

Like cultures worldwide, the bull symbolism throughout Africa is linked to wealth, power, and sustenance.

The Zulu population from South-eastern Africa valued cattle for their economic value and their spiritual meaning, white bull symbolism being particularly important. 

A newly born white calf was automatically given to the king. These white cattle symbolize purity, harmony, and the absence of pollution.

The Dinka population from Sudan, the largest ethnic tribe in Sudan, is famous for their pastoral traditions and takes cultural pride in cattle farming.

If the bull symbol is connected to the material aspect for the southern parts of Africa, going up North, things change. 

bull portrait

The Egyptian mythology and culture put a great value on the bull meaning symbolism. 

The ancient Egyptians worshipped their deities, many of which were depicted in animal forms. Among the most critical animal cults was the bull cult. 

The main horned gods were Apis (son of Hathor), Buchis (deification of the life force), and Mnevis (a physical manifestation of Atum-Ra).

The Apis bull was always connected to Egypt’s king and represented its most essential traits: vitality and strength. In the personification of gods, the bull was also a potent symbol of renewal.

Bull in Dreams

The bull dream meaning is often associated with the presence or lack of aggressiveness in your life. Have you been mean to someone lately? If yes, you should change your attitude as you might drive people away. 

But maybe you are a kind and calm person. A bull dream is a sign that a change of perspective is required. You should feel more confident and competitive.

A bull in a dream is also a sign of stubbornness, indicating the need to be more determined regardless of risks.

When you dream about bulls, it means that you can handle difficult situations. It represents your inner strength, strong will, and power. 

running bulls

Psychologically speaking, it might express sexual desires and urges. The bull symbolism in dreams is strongly linked to the actions and the colors of the animal. 

The black bull dream meaning can be quite damaging, and it should be taken as a warning. You might be facing a difficult situation or someone who loathes you might give you hard times.  

A common dream among the bull dreams is the one where a raging bull chases you. Believe it or not, this could mean that you are about to become rich through inheritance.

Bull Encounters and Omens

The bull in dream meaning might be related to a positive or negative omen. For example, dreaming about a bull with horns might warn you that you need to confront a difficult situation.

What about encountering a bull? Seeing this animal that signifies strength is an excellent omen. Known as a bringer of good luck and wealth to various cultures, the bull is also looked upon as a sign of love and fertility.

However, most superstitions and omens are seen in India, where Cow is worshipped in Hinduism. Seeing cows in big cities is difficult nowadays; however, cow superstitions are still widespread in India’s rural parts.  

bull standing

Let’s see what does a cow symbolizes when seen. When someone goes on a journey, the Cow might indicate the events happening in the near future. If you meet a cow and its calf, this is a good omen. 

All your wishes will become true. Cattle are also able to predict the weather unconsciously. 

If you see many flies buzzing over a cow or bull, there is a good rainfall possibility. And since the rain is associated with fertility and abundance, this is a good omen.  

Bull Mythology and Folklore

The bull symbol meaning is prevalent among all-important mythologies and religions throughout the world. Numerous stories and legends have a central image of the bull character.

In some parts of the world like Nepal or India, cow slaughter is strictly forbidden. 

The cow is a sacred animal in Hinduism, Jainism, and Buddhism, and saving it from slaughter is the way to achieve the hope for a better rebirth. 

A powerful symbol of motherhood, the cow, is celebrated during the Diwali festivities. The Muslims will allow the slaughter of cows but only after performing the ritual of Dhabihah. 

bull portrait

The cow is an important symbol in the Islamic world, and it even borrowed its name from the longest Quran chapter, Al-Baqarah (translated The Heifer).

Both Greek and Roman mythology tell stories of mythical bulls and their traits. Solar symbols and tokens of royalty, the bulls appear in many ancient legends. 

We all read about the Minotaur, the powerful man with the head of a bull who lived on the island of Crete. The symbolic meaning of this ancient bull is the inner struggle with one’s animal nature.  

The bull played an essential role in human culture, and religious beliefs are among the most important symbols of power.

Bull Spirit Animal

How can you be sure that the bull is your spirit animal? If you are born during springtime under the bull sign (known as Taurus), this is your spirit guide. 

The Taurus animal symbol is loyal friendship, leadership, blunt honesty, and sensuality. 

However, the Taurus people borrowed some of their spiritual guide’s negative traits: stubbornness and wrath without fear of consequences.

When the bull comes to you as a spirit animal, it carries an important message. You are being asked to gather all your inner strength and hold your ground when the going seems to be getting tough. The spirit of the bull will guide you and teach you how to be healthy and patient. 

The bull will help you create wealth and prosperity. The red bull symbol meaning has a strong sexual connotation. 

An ancient representation of masculinity and passion, the red bull appears when your deep feelings and love require guidance.

Although the ancient Egyptian looked at the black bulls as a symbol of death (personification of God Osiris, ruler of the underworld), the black bull meaning is associated with sexual desire and passion. Expression of your inner self and sexuality, the black bull is also a guide towards peace and serenity.

Bull Totem Animal

Same as the spirit, the totem animal is already assigned to you at birth, especially in the case of the zodiac signs. You might have a bull’s characteristics due to the cosmic configuration at the time of your delivery.

People with bull totems are natural leaders and have an aura of toughness. They have a tremendous power to hold back; however, if they reach the boiling point, it is not wise to be around them.

Those who have cow animal totems are very protective of their families. Since the Cow is a symbol of abundance and fortune, the cow people are very good at acquiring material possessions, always craving for stability. 

bull standing

These folks will also put others’ needs above their own, being very compassionate and sympathetic. A strong recommendation for the cow people would be not to follow others blindly.  

The ox totem animal provides endurance when faced with challenging tasks. Its energy will not allow hesitation and procrastination. 

Ox totem people are hardworking and willing to meet a challenge head-on. These folks work very well in teams, but they also have robust self-determination. They are very stubborn but only because they are so willing to complete a task.

Bull Power Animal

The meaning of a bull as a power animal is related to Yang’s vibrant energy; therefore, it makes a great power animal for men. The bull animal’s meaning is about protecting its herd, especially the offspring.

However, the bull medicine card should grab your attention when you need to gather your strength. It also helps with calling abundance into your life. 

There is a strong belief that the Bull’s thundering hooves bring rain, which is a sign of abundance. Their hooves may also cause earthquakes, which symbolizes dominance over the Earth’s primordial energies.

bull standing

Looking at the Hindu animal symbolism, it is obvious why this sacred power animal is so important. 

The Bull represents both positive and negative traits of human nature, and calling upon this medicine card is a shout for enlightenment. Hinduism links bull to the idea of knowledge, education, devotion, virility, and fighting spirit.

To conclude, call the Bull into your life whenever you need guidance on using your inner power to bring abundance into your life. Bear in mind that this abundance can be either material or spiritual. The Bull is a reminder that the ability to reproduce is in your grasp.

Bull Tattoo Meaning

Bull tattoo designs are prevalent among people with a strong fighting spirit. Due to their association with strength, masculinity, protection, or death, bulls have fascinated humankind since prehistoric times, so it was a matter of time until they started to decorate warriors’ bodies.

The most common designs are those of bulls’ skulls. Bull skull meaning comes from the Native Americans who associated it with life, prosperity, death, and destruction. 

The bull skull symbolism inspired people to choose it as a tattoo to show they do not fear death. Or perhaps they accepted their mortality.

bull illustration

If you ever wondered what is the bull skull with feathers meaning, you should know that it comes from the Native American folklore. 

Adding feathers to the skull, the bones become a symbol of the world of spirits power and a source of ritual.

One of the most famous bull tattoos belonged to Dwayne Johnson, and in his case, the Brahma bull meaning is linked to his zodiac sign.

Ultimately, the bull tattoo symbol is different for everybody. Whether you choose the elegant bull skull tattoo or a tribal representation of this animal, you should wear it with pride.

Conclusion

The bull is a powerful spirit animal. Whether its symbolism is linked to positive traits like strength and abundance or negative characteristics like death or destruction, it’s highly recommended to pay attention when it comes to your life. The bull’s spiritual guidance is always needed, and its toughness will inspire you.

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