Powerful Symbols And Meanings of Celtic, Viking and Japanese Culture


Cultures all over the globe are filled with meaningful and magical symbols that most of the time attract our curiosity. Find out about the powerful symbols and meanings of Celtic, Viking and Japanese culture, that you have seen for sure but don’t know what they actually stand for.

The Celtic mythology is a realm marked by misterious and  strange looking signs. Here are some of the Celtic symbols and meanings that you might find interesting.



The word is a Greek term, which means “three legged”, and if you look closely at the sign, it does look like three legs running. The meaning of this Celtic symbol stands for competition  and the progress of man.



The word comes from Latin and means “three cornered” and it represents a holy symbol with many meanings. It is a symbol composed of three interlocked pisces, stressing on the intersection of three circles. Most often it used as a symbol for the Holy Trinity, used by the Celtic Christian Church and sometimes it can be found as three interlaced fish.

 Triple Spiral


The triple spiral is a symbol found in many Celtic tombs, and is drawn as one continuous line, implying rebirth or resurrection. The theory of its meaning comes from the fact that many of these drawings have been found in places where they catch the first sun rays on the solstice, and  they appear to have been placed there intentionally.

Celtic Tree of Life

tree good

The Tree was an important part of the early Celtic spirituality. For the Celts, the tree was a  a source of living, a bearer of food, a shelter and fuel provider for cooking and keeping warm. Without the existence of trees, living  would have been almost impossible.

Celtic stories, say that trees were the ancestors of mankind, beings of wisdom who created the alphabet, the calendar and the entrance to the land of the Gods.



Today is considered a good luck charm but the shamrock has a much deeper meaning. The Druids, believed that is represented a three in one concept, of the three dominions on the planet, sky and sea and the ages of humans and the stages of the moon. In the Celtic folklore, the Shamrock stands as a symbol against evil, a belief that has been carried on till present days,as the four leafed clover is used as a good luck charm.



A Celtic cross represents a cross with a ring which surrounds the intersection. The symbol is associated with the Celtic Christianity even though it has much older origins. Crosses like such are part of a large Celtic art. A Celtic cross, standing, made out of stone and usually with lots of ornaments, is called a high cross or an Irish Cross. In Ireland, a popular myth says that the celtic cross was brought by Saint Patrick or maybe Saint Declan while he was converting the pagan Irish people.

The Green Man


The Green Man is believed to be an ancient Celtic symbol. In the Celtic mythology he is the God of Spring and Summer. He is believed to disappear and come back every year, century after century, enacting death and resurrection and the circle of life.  The  legend of Sir Gawain, The Green Knight, is an obvious image of the Green Man from the Middle Ages. Gawain is wearing a green helmet, green armour and a green shield but also a green horse. After he was beheaded he continued to live on.

Symbols and meanings belonging to Vikings

Vikings have had a lot a lot of symbols with plenty of sacred or mystical meanings and many of them have very interesting looks.

 The Triple Horn of Odin


The symbol is made out of three interlocked drinking horns and is usually worn or displayed as a proof of commitment to the modern faith Asatru.


tree 2

Yggdrasil, the Norse World Ash, is the giant mythic tree that holds together the Nine Worlds or lands of existence.  The World-ash stands for the Nine Worlds and is protected by the Jormungadr serpent. Yggdrasil is one the of plenty variations of the Universal World Tree, known to all the human cultures.

 The Julbock

Straw Goat - 4" julbock (1)

The Julbock also known as the Yule-goat is a universal symbol of the winter holidays in the Scandinavian countries.  Going back in the pre-christian times, the Julbock is yet another Pagan Yule symbol, that was taken by the Christian holiday holiday customs. In the pagan Norse religion, a goat represented the conveyance of the gods-early representations of Odin in a goat drawn cart, strangely similar to further portrayals of Santa Claus.

 Troll Cross


The troll cross is some sort of amulet consisting of a circle of iron crossed at the base. The charm has been worn by early Scandinavian people to protect themselves against trolls and elves. Iron and crosses were believed to be a combination that casts away evil spirits.



The symbol it is known as the Valknut, meaning “a knot of slain”, and it has been found in stone funerary carvings, which most probably was meant to represent the after life. The signs is often found in the art portraying god Odin, and it may represent his power over death.

 The Helm of Awe


The Helm of Awe, is a protection against spells used by early Vikings. Some legends say that, when worn between the eyes, this protective symbol, was meant to offer invincibility to the one who was wearing it or make the enemy fearful.

 Thor’s Hammer


Thor’s Hammer, stands for an ancient Norse symbol, and represents the legendary magical weapon of Thor. Also known as Mjolnr, which means “lightning”, symbolised Thor’s power over Lightning and Thunder. The Hammer or Thor, was said to always come back after it has been thrown.

A Thor Hammer amulet has been often worn by believers who thought that it would protect them, and the practice continued even after the Norse population had converted to Christianity. Modern times use it as a sign of recognition of members belonging to the Asatru faith, and is symbolic of Norse heritage.

 Japanese symbols and meanings

Japan is another country with many symbols that are related to its national culture and magical beliefs.

 Japanese Dragons


Japanese symbols of dragons are very similar to Chinese dragons, with the exception that the Japanese dragon has only three claws or toes, while the Chinese dragon has five and the common dragon ahs four claws. There are two types of Japanese dragons, one lives in the sky or clouds and the other is found in water or rain. It is believed that dragons are controlling rain, fire and Earth. Most known Japanese words for dragons are ryu and tatsu.



Japanese culture sees butterflies as the souls of the living and the dead and are considered to symbolize happiness and longevity.



The carp(koi) represents perseverance and is also a symbol of faithfulness in marriage and good luck. It is often shown in motion, arched upwards with water sprays. This suggests the virtues of a great warrior and is usually associated with the qualities desired in young men.

 Cherry Blossoms


Starting from the Heian Period, cherry blossoms have been revered by Japanese culture.The brief blooming of the flowers and the fragility of its blossoms has been associated with the transience of life.



In the Japanese symbolism, dragons flies are an emblem of martial success, as several names for the insects are homonyms for words which mean victory. Dragonflies are also a symbol for late summers and early autumns.



Turtles are a complex motif of Japanese culture. Taoism, Hinduism, Confucianism and Buddhism are all beliefs that promote understanding and are all claiming that the turtle helps prop up the world, is a guardian of the northern quadrant of the Universe, together with the snake, and carries its sacred carapace inscriptions.



Many symbols of the Japan have been assimilated from China, and Chinese symbols and meanings, are widely present in the Japanese culture. Chrysanthemums were believed to have healing powers for excessive drinking, nervousness and debilitating diseases. Chinese culture associates the flower with integrity and endurance.

Image Source: wikimedia commons, 123RF, Pinterest, SHAMROCK LIFESTOCK MARKET, Ireland Fun Facts, Earth Song Ceramic Tiles, dramatic-rant, imgkid, garlic pig, JOTCAMP, Valknut Press, rune secrets, DEVIANT ART , Drago Art ,  Drawingforkids , THE TOKIO TIMES, fineartamerica, The Sword and the Axe

The Best Things about the New York Restaurant Week

new york restaurant week


New York City knows how to eat and what to eat. The small city has more restaurants per square foot than any other place in the world. With a few dollars in your pocket, you simply cannot starve in New York City. And the most delicious and cheapest food in New York City has to be one you can get during the New York restaurant week.

The New York restaurant week is actually two weeks a year when around 300 restaurants in New York City lower their prices to feed New Yorkers and tourists until they can’t get up from their chairs. We love pretty much everything there is to love about the New York restaurant week, from the places, to the amazing food, to the vibe the city has that week. Today, we’re going to have a little countdown of the best things about New York restaurant week.

New York Restaurant Week Happens Twice a Year

Wondering when is the next New York restaurant week going to take place? Well, this winter, from February 16 to March 6, 2015, around 300 restaurants in New York City are going to open their door to gourmands. If you want, you can start making reservations, to make sure you’re going to have a table at some of the best restaurants in the city. This is another great thing about the New York City restaurant week, that you know about it in advance and you can make all the preparations you want.

If this winter’s session leaves you unsatisfied, then you should wait until July, for the summer dates, when the next NYC restaurant week commences with amazing deals on 3-course meals in fantastic locations.

New York Restaurant Week Is Becoming More and More Popular

This is simply great news, because the more popular New York Restaurant Week becomes, the more restaurants are going to take part in it. More restaurants mean more food and that’s something everybody loves. The New York City restaurant week first happened as a lunch-only promotional event in 1992. It was in 2013 that the event started gaining more popularity and in 2014 it was a massive success. In 2015, it is estimated that the number of people who will take part in the New York Restaurant week is going to increase by 20%.

The Diverse Menu

Basically, this is the best thing about the week! There is a little something for everybody during the New York Restaurant Week. If you’re a vegan or a vegetarian, there are plenty of no-meat/no animal product restaurants that take part in the New York restaurant week. If you want Buffalo wings, then you’re sure to find some at great prices. If an a la carte menu is the thing you’re searching for, then the New York Restaurant Week will deliver!

New York City Restaurant Week Recommendations

As we mentioned at the beginning of the article, there are 300 restaurants in New York that take part in restaurant week. Today, we’ve only got three recommendations for you. The first place we urge you to try during New York restaurant week is Bobby Van’s Steakhouse (five of their locations are participating in Restaurant Week). These guys make the best steaks and the best cheesecake you will ever taste.

Our second recommendation is an Indian restaurant, the only Indian restaurant in the United States with a Michelin star, Devi. Located on 8 East 18th Street, Devi becomes a steal during New York restaurant week. At Devi you will eat the best Indian food in the U.S., not just New York City.

And our third and final recommendation for a great restaurant during the New York Restaurant Week is Il Mulino. It is lunch only, but you’ll be having lunch where Obama and Clinton had dined during their visit to New York in 2009. We suggest the hand-cut pasta, it’s worth every penny!

If you’ve got any recommendations for our readers about where to go and eat this winter for New York restaurant week, we suggest you leave your comment in the section below and share with others your culinary discoveries.

How to Find a Good Accident Avoidance Course

Despite passing your driver’s license test and being the proud owner of your license, you probably have only a vague idea on what to do in a potentially dangerous driving situation and how to maximize your chances of avoiding an accident. Too often difficult situations in traffic find many of us blank out and at a loss for proper reactions.  It doesn’t matter if you have your license for decades, or if you have just earned it, there are courses, both theoretical and hands-on, that teach you just that. For the sake of our safety and others, it can be a good idea to seek out the available courses, and even take a quick test and verify the right answers. You will probably want to start out by looking for an accident avoidance course in your own area, but, to give you a better idea of what to look for, here are 4 courses for accident avoidance that you can check out online.

1.     Army Learning Management System – www.lms.army.mil

accident avoidance course 1

By far the most popular and prestigious accident avoidance courses, the Army Accident Avoidance Course ( and certificate) offered by the Army Learning Management System (ALMS) is considered a standard in the field and many other institutions simply direct users towards the army’s website for their needs. Unfortunately, at the time of the writing of this article, a huge overhaul of the ALMS is in full swing, with the lms.army.mil being under maintenance between 14th of November and the 24th of November, in order to “update its technology and to support and maintain emerging Army training strategies”. But after the maintenance work is done, the new and improved ALMS 4 promises to bring many new features, including an upgraded user interface, better course navigation, advanced social media integration and revised terminology.

2.     BSR – www.accidentavoidance.com

Accident Avoidance Course 2

The accident avoidance course provided by driving training veterans BSR is teaches “already-licensed drivers, with six months driving experience, how to handle highway emergencies.” The company claims that after following their courses, graduates will have the opportunity to respond instantaneously and more positively to any driving emergency.  The courses take place on four training circuits, that contrast strongly with the parking lots and public roads typically utilized in traditional drivers education and strive for a level of realism that will make the graduate feel as familiar with real high-speed emergency situations as possible. BSR’s courses include “swerve to avoid” manoeuvres at high speed, ocular driving techniques, skid control and recovery practice, the better understanding of vehicle dynamics and off-road recovery among other techniques and methods that one that might just save your life.

3.     Tony Scotti’s Vehicle Dynamics – http://vehicledynamics.com/

 accident avoidance course 3

Tony Scotti’s Vehicle Dynamics Institute overs a large range of driving specialization courses, from protective driving for security experts, to surveillance detection tactics and techniques, as well as a course of accident avoidance. The intensive full day program aims to equip drivers of all ages with skills that are needed to recognize and avoid situations that have the potential to be life-threatening. Marketed towards “young drivers, family members and other non-professional drivers”, the course boasts the use of exercises that are specifically designed to help drivers better understand their own limitations and how to safely operate a vehicle in a wide range of situations and conditions.

4.     Accident Avoidance Workshops – www.accidentavoidanceworkshops.org

accident avoidance course 4

The Accident Avoidance Workshops is a company specialized in this very field and advertises their accident avoidance course as being a dynamic one, which is constantly evolving, based on their research of crash statistics, thus making sure that the program continues to stay relevant in today’s driving environment. Knowing that drivers only control two dynamics of the vehicle, speed and direction, the course tries to equip the graduate with the sort of skills that will give them “the best chance of surviving a potentially fatal Emergency Driving Condition, by maximizing on the braking and manoeuvrability of their vehicle without losing control of it. In an attempt to make the courses directly and immediately relevant, the student will make use of their own vehicle during the program, to better apply the learned methods to their specific car. The main areas of knowledge that the program insists on are wheels overcorrection, positioning inside the vehicle, lane positioning, distracted driving, parking space navigation, maximizing on manoeuvrability and following distance determination.

5 Tips For Growing Carnivorous Plants Indoor

One of our colleagues here at ThisBlogRules bought a carnivorous plant recently, a Dionaea Muscipula or a Venus Flytrap. He got it in a pot and planted the little seeds himself. The Venus flytrap carnivorous plants are not very difficult to grow as an apartment plant but it has its special demands. If you take good care of them you will get to see them catch their live prey with their little trap leaves. It’s fascinating to watch them eat. Carnivorous plants are one of nature’s freaks and we want to share with you some tips on growing carnivorous plants indoor.

1. Keep them Watered All the Time

water carnivorous plants apartment

Carnivorous plants need to be watered often and have their soil damp all the time. In order to do this you need to use the tray method. Put the pots in a saucer or a tray and keep it with water all the time. Some carnivorous plants like pitcher plants love their soil soggy and you can keep the water in the tray as deep as ½ of the pot. Most carnivorous plants want damp to wet soil so you can keep the water at ¼ inch and make sure you refill it when it’s almost gone. The plants suck the water whenever they need it. Some say that it’s even better to put water in the tray rather than directly on the plant because this way you avoid scaring the flytraps with false alarms. Whenever you water them (when they’re fully grown and the traps are developed) they will think it’s an insect and they will lose energy trying to catch it. So bottom line is that the number one tip for growing carnivorous plants indoor is to give them plenty of water.

2. What Is the Best Water for Carnivorous Plants?

mineral free water carnivorous plants apartment

Another important tip for growing carnivorous plants indoor is to know what water to use when watering them. Make sure to always use mineral free water, such as distilled water or rainwater. You must avoid bottled water and never use tap water. There are too many minerals in it and carnivorous plants are used to nutrient poor soils. All the minerals from the above mentioned types of water can kill the plants.

3. The Proper Soil for Carnivorous Plants?

soil carnivorous plants apartment

Carnivorous plants grow in nutrient poor soil naturally so you must try to imitate that by getting a soil rich in peat and sand. Try mixing sphagnum peat moss and horticultural clean sand. Avoid mineral rich sand from contractors. Never use lime stone sand or beach sand because it contains too much sand and it will harm your plants.

4. Carnivorous Plants Love Their Light

light carnivorous plants apartment

In their natural habitat carnivorous plants get plenty of sunlight. If you want to grow one in your apartment you must give them light, as a general rule. You need to put them in a spot where they get sun light. Try putting them on a windowsill.

5. Dormancy Period

dormancy carnivorous plants apartment

Another tip for growing carnivorous plants indoor is to respect their dormancy period. Carnivorous plants live in a temperate climate and need their winter sleep. It’s their way of protecting against the harshness of winter. Some plants, like the Venus Flytrap form winter leaves and other shed their leaves during the cold season. You need to allow them to rest, otherwise they will get exhausted and die. During the dormancy period you need to water them less, leaving the soil only slightly damp. Reduce the amount of daylight and keep them in a cooler place for 3 to 6 months. You can put them in a basement where it’s not freezing and it’s pretty dark.

These were some of the most important tips for growing carnivorous plants indoor. Do you have a carnivorous plant in your apartment? Any advice you could give us and our readers?







9 Amazing Facts About the Moon

9 Amazing Facts About the Moon

We see it every night. It lightens our way through the dark and it adds up some romanticism and depth to our nocturnal walks and conversations. It’s been with us for as long as we can remember and we are pretty aware of the fact that it influences our mood, our healing processes and the growth of our hair, just to mention a few. Yes, I’m talking about our dear old Moon. But how much do we actually know about it? Here are 9 amazing facts about the Moon that will probably blow your mind, or at least make you look at it from a different perspective.

1. The Moon is the only surface in our Solar System that has been physically stepped on by humans, besides the Earth, of course.

9 Amazing Facts About the Moon1

2. The Moon formed out of the Earth

It appears that an object as big as planet Mars hit the Earth some 4.5 billion years ago. The collision was so large that a huge spray of material was ejected into space. This is how the Moon was born. The proof for this belief relies on the fact that the Moon seems to be much less dense than the Earth and lacks a lot of iron in its core. Scientists think that the Moon is made up of the upper crust material, which has mostly lower density, than the composition of the Earth.

3. The Moon isn’t round

It’s actually shaped like an egg, and looks spherical from Earth because of the fact that one of the smaller ends that has a circular silhouette, is the one facing us.

4. The moon is moving away from Earth

As it spins and orbits our planet, the moon is slowly drifting away from us with about 1.5 inches per year. Today, the moon is about 280,000 miles from Earth, but when it first formed, researchers estimate that it was just 14,000 miles away from Earth.

9 Amazing Facts About the Moon2

5. The Moon only shows one face to the Earth

Despite the fact that the Moon used to rotate in the sky compared to our point of view, it has been slowing down for billions of years. It’s the Earth’s gravity that holds the Moon in orbit, but it pulls differently at various parts of the Moon. Over a long period of time, gravity slowed down the Moon’s rotation so that it finally stopped it, and that’s why the Moon always displays one face to the Earth. The side that we never see is referred to as “the dark side of the Moon,” despite the fact that it receives just as much sunlight as the visible side.

6. The Moon appears terrifying to some people

9 Amazing Facts About the Moon3

This phobia is called Selenophobia and sufferers have frequent panick attacks, start trembling and sweating whenever they see or even think about the Moon.

7. Gravity on the Moon is only 17% of the Earth

Since the pull of gravity on the Moon is only 17% the pull of gravity on the Earth, you’ll feel much lighter. For instance if you weighed 100 lbs. on Earth, you would feel like you only weighed 17 on the Moon. You could take up circus acts in a blink of an eye.

8. It gets extremely hot and extremely cold out there on the Moon

When the sun is shining on the moon, temperatures climb to 260 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s hotter than the boiling point of water at 212 degrees. On the dark, far side of the moon, things get frosty, dipping to -280 degrees Fahrenheit. So it’s unbearable for any human who plans on running away and building a life out there.

9. There’s a lot of trash on the Moon as well

9 Amazing Facts About the Moon4

Over time, the astronauts who visited the Moon managed to leave quite a bit of trash behind. It is estimated that there’s about 400,000 lbs. of man-made materials lying around the Moon. This trash includes astronaut poop containers as well, along with debris from various experiments, space probes and lunar rovers.