Butterflies came to me as a sign at every sacred site I visited in Europe on this particular trip, but I never expected a psychedelic paper butterfly to be one of mystical route markers along my journey!
This time the butterfly was not black and white, like the one who came to whisper in my ear at Delphi. Instead a brightly colored paper butterfly waved hello to me from above! It was like a psychedelic kaleidoscope reminiscent of the shapes one sometimes sees in sacred geometry art or tie-died T-shirts from the 60's.
“Aaah, der schmetterling,” the German inn-keeper sighed, “It does not belong to me either.” She then explained that just prior to our arrival, there was a shamanic workshop conducted at the same venue. The shaman who conducted the classes is originally from Peru and he was in a hurry to leave on the last day. He had asked her to keep the butterfly safe for him, and bring it with her later, when she went to Berlin for shopping.
"Such a coincidence,” added the inn lady, “He contacted me just yesterday to ask how his schmetterling was doing!” I just smiled at her and said, “when you speak to the shaman again, please thank him for the butterfly medicine he brought into my life.”
The butterfly featured as symbol of transformation in Aztec, Inca and Mayan culture. In Peru over 90 varieties of butterfly are found, where they are considered a symbol of transition and celebration. The enchanting Morpho didius, or Blue Morpho is the most famous in South America and considered a national symbol of Peru. ‘Morpho’ means changed or modified. This shimmering butterfly is also an epithet of Aphrodite and Venus, the goddesses of love, beauty, pleasure, and prosperity.
© 2013 Anthon St Maarten