Animal Totem #69

Symbolic Meaning of Iguana

Symbolic Meaning of Iguana

Iguana Meaning and Symbolism

I’ve had a lot of time and opportunity to contemplate the symbolic meaning of iguana because the bright little baby (well, maybe not so little any more) you see in the picture above is mine.

Yes, Spike is my green iguana daughter. My partner and I adopted her when she was only a few months old and six inches long.

Today, she’s 6 feet from tip to tail and she’ll have her 11th birthday this year.

Over the years, Spike has been an effective (if not unorthodox) teacher.

Her finest lessons are:

  • Contentment
  • Awareness
  • Confidence
  • Expectation
  • Contemplation
  • Appreciation

The most notable symbolic meaning of iguana, to me, is contentment. I’ve spent countless hours observing Spike. Where some folks might see a lazy lizard lounging, I see a contemplative creature expressing infinite acceptance and contentment .

She’s never in a rush. There is no hurry in her world. Everything comes in due time. She’s okay with simply being. She’s just fine with the cycles of sunrise and sunset and these simple parameters of life sustain her well being.

I really marvel at this kind of simple satisfaction. And, when I find myself in knots about some stupid thing or another, my mind harkens to that consistent level of well being Spike exudes.

The iguana (most lizards, actually) will come into our awareness when we need a reminder to just simply BE. They’ll ask us to quit fussing. Just be still. Bask in the magnificent order of our world (the sun rises and sets, the air we breathe is always there for us, the earth keeps a lovely orbit, the seasons all march to a beautiful, orderly beat in time).

Another symbolic meaning of iguana I’ve noticed is a subtle appreciation for all things. Spike loves Johnny Mathis – just swoons when she hears him (she also loves the music of Richard Wagner…who would have thunk it!?).

She also loves her armpits scratched. 🙂

How do I know she appreciates these things? Because her demeanor instantly changes when Johnny croons, and that itch is satisfied. Her color becomes more bright, her eyes twinkle, and I swear the corners of her mouth upturn in a smile. Her head even bobs a little when good music plays (I kid you not).

Yes, iguanas (at least mine) have the ability to appreciate the finer things in life – like good music, good food, and especially good basking spots. There’s nothing better than being warmed by a bright patch of sun after a good meal.

That’s a big lesson that goes hand-in-hand with contentment. Appreciating the simple lovelies we have in our life is perhaps the most substantial symbolic meaning of iguana can share.

If iguanas or lizards are coming into your awareness, it could be a clear sign to bask in the art of appreciation.

It really is an art form too. Many of us are trained to work, slave, do, do, do – it can be a real effort to stop and smell the roses . Iguana energy beckons us to value the beauty around us, envelope ourselves in a good book, get lost in a good meal, revel in ecstasy over a few spare moments to just relax.

And speaking of relaxing, another symbolic meaning of iguana deals with contemplation. Spike is always observing. My human mind believes she’s always suspending judgment about what she sees too.

Rather, she just observes and contemplates with youthful acceptance and peripheral curiosity. She seems to ruminate over every little thing for no other reason other than she can. From the birds that fly overhead, to the leaves that change color with the season – nothing is lost on her awareness. She drinks in her surroundings with an openness and marvels at the spectacles available for her contemplative pleasure.

Same holds true for us. The iguana encourages us to put ourselves in a mindset of utter wonder.

Give it a try. Look out into your wide, wide world with eyes of awe for what you observe. Suspend judgment, and just peer out as if everything were new, different and filled with magical potential. Everything holds your attention, and everything is wholly enchanting.



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