I feel sorry for the moth, it often gets overlooked by people who are more enticed by the butterfly’s colours.
What is the difference between a moth and a butterfly?
- Moths are nocturnal and butterflies are out in the day
- Moths have fluffy antennae and butterflies don’t
- Moths have dull, earthy colours and butterflies have bright patterns
- Moths rest with their wings laid flat and butterflies rest with their wings up vertically
Of course, there are exceptions to all of these characteristics but they give you a rough feel for the differences.
Like a moth to the flame…
Another reason I feel sorry for the moth is its poor adaptation to today’s world. The moth has been around a very very long time, much longer than the butterfly. It is a creature of the night and it is thought that the moth uses moon light to guide it. And then we come along and stick up streetlamps, porch lights and all other illuminated objects which throw them way off course.
When I was thinking about this, I realised that we too are victims of our own world. Where the moth is looking for the true light, we too are searching for that thing which will fill a hole in our soul. Where the moth, trustingly, flies towards the streetlamp thinking it is the light of the moon, we move towards capitalism, addiction, materialism etc to satiate us. But, whereas the moth goes forth with blind faith, we can question it. Is this a true, soul filling light, or is it another human creation designed to attract us but really insubstantial? I was able to explain this much better when I was laying awake in the middle of the night! Isn’t that always the way?
Within this extended metaphor, we can see the moon, the true light, as the unconscious, the shadows of ourselves, a symbol of mystery and the unknown. It is this link with the moon that ties the moth to the inner world, to intuition and also to death. And I think the moth pictured on the card is the Luna Moth.
By the way, moths have great names! Their family names include: Footman Moths, Hawkmoths, Hooktips and Pugs. And when you get down to individual species you have names such as the awesome Death Head Hawkmoth, The Alchymist, Chimney Sweeper, Feathered Gothic and True Lovers Knot!
Like many short lived creatures, once in adult form, their main purpose is to have sex before they die. But before this they go through the amazing process of metamorphosis. Starting life as an egg, they then become caterpillars before creating a silk wrapped cocoon. Whilst all insects go through some form of metamorphosis, it is most closely associated with the butterfly so I will look at this in more depth in that post.
A couple of things you might want to consider if you’ve drawn this card are around burnout and your attention span. Are you flitting from one thing to another? Ooh… shiny bright light… ooh….!