Mantis-Shrimp / Stomatopod - Jewel Hammer
* Credit goes to intropy for her invaluable input in helping to write and co-ordinate the information for this guide.
Lashing Out. Accuracy. Valuing Boundary. Holding Onto What We Need. Responsibility for Personal Power. Communication. The Contradiction of Strength Vs. Vulnerability. Reconciliation of Opposites. Death and Rebirth. Drastic Change. Grounded. Seeing What is Hidden. Seeing Situations From All Facets. Remaining Earthed in Water.
Stomatopods - found on ocean floors world-wide - are commonly known as mantis shrimp or thumb-splitters, are an order of crustaceans distantly related to crabs, shrimp and lobsters. Stomatopods possess a unique pair of folding forelegs specialised for prey capture. They resemble the striking legs of the praying mantis. Stomatopods are broken into two groups depending on how they catch prey: smashers and spearers. Smashers eat hard-bodied prey like crabs, shrimp, clams, snails, and other mantis shrimp, while spearers focus on soft prey like fish. They both live in burrows, spearers prefer sand or mud, smashers prefer cavities in harder substrates like rock. The claws on a smashing mantis shrimp take less than a second to fully extend, and may hit with force similar to a small caliber bullet. This is one of the fastest motions in the animal kingdom.
Stomatopods have incredible eyesight in order to aid accuracy when hunting/striking, with up to sixteen visual pigments (humans have three), four color filters, the ability to see several different kinds of polarized light, and vision that extends into the infra-red and ultra-violet.
Please remember that if this animal is contacting you, it will often be the best resource for teaching you what its lessons are. What I write is only intended to be a guide, it is not absolute, nor is it infallible. Despite my original plan, this report now addresses both spearer and smasher Stomatopods.
- Stomatopod comes into our life to teach us to hold onto what's yours or holding onto what we need, in their ability to aggressively defend their homes and boundaries. The teach us to value boundaries. They also teach us to take time for yourself.
- Responsibility for personal power is another lesson Stomatopod teaches us, it comes into our lives to remind us that we not only have deadly weapons at our disposal, but deadly weapons inherent in our own bodies. Stomatopod is an excellent creature for teaching us anger management and helping us understand what our anger is for.
- Stomatopod teaches us that sometimes it is important to lash out. Most of the time we learn how to prevent this emotional action and its negative repercussions, but at times it's important to recognise that we may be more prone to lashing out than others, the reasons for this, and the positive and negative ways it affects us. Stomatopod asks us to examine our emotions and our defenses, and the reasons for our lashing out emotionally or physically.
- Stomatopod teaches us to seize opportunity quickly and with accuracy. As they are able to strike multiple times per second, so we too are able to seize the opportunities in our lives that will nourish us with speed that we (and others) might not even know we're capable of.
- Stomatopod comes into our life to teach us the contradiction of strength vs. vulnerability. This animal is hardier than other similar invertebrates, yet complex organic chemicals can kill them instantly. They are aggressive and gentle. They are hated and loved. They are predators and prey. Stomatopod teaches us how to reconcile opposites within ourselves.
- Growth is change. Stomatopod tells us that you cannot grow without allowing change, even though the act of change itself leaves us vulnerable and frightened. Stomatopod reminds us that change is not destructive even when it appears to be. You might even change drastically and still remain true to yourself.
- The sensitive vision of the Stomatopod and it's ability to see almost everything from a grounded perspective teaches us to observe acutely while remaining grounded. It is important to look at details and the whole picture at once, to see what is there, and not only what we think is there.
- Stomatopod advises us on how to best remain grounded to the earth if water has a strong significance or influence in our life. It also teaches us how to remain mobile and perceptive despite being grounded. Many people with too much earth can become narrow-minded, and people with too much water can become too emotional; Stomatopod gives us the best of both worlds, open-minded groundedness, if we choose to learn.
If you have Stomatopod / Mantis-Shrimp as your guide:
People with this animal as a guide will often manifest traits similar to the animal itself. I work on the philosophy that we only have one guide, and it teaches us lessons as well as representing the core aspects of our personality. Therefore -
- People with Stomatopod energy are adept at seeing all facets to a situation, and see through a lot of bullshit. At times however, these people may feel as though they 'see too much' and can feel overwhelmed. Connecting further with Stomatopod energy will help lessen this tendency and teach groundedness. This ability to see also translates into the realms of the occult as a heightened ability to perceive in all worlds visually.
- People with Stomatopod energy are aware that aggression is a double-edged sword. From a young age they know it's possible to do great harm to another person, and that fighting is dangerous. Responsibility and fear may make them reluctant to display aggression until they learn when it is appropriate.
There will be other ways your guide manifests, and you will recognise them with awareness and communion.
As a shadow energy:
The shadow guide is the animal we often fear irrationally, that teaches us things about ourselves that are profound and difficult to confront. Often the traits we fear most within the shadow guide, are the traits that we dislike in ourselves. We must scrutinise why this is, and learn how to work with them.
- The problem with being strong and hardy, is that people can take us for granted. People who resent and fear Stomatopod might find that in their own lives, they feel that their fragility is over-looked because their exterior seems hardy or self-sufficient. It is important for these people to learn that just because you can defend yourself, doesn't mean that at times you need to seek out comfort or some tender treatment.
Contacting Stomatopod / Mantis-Shrimp:
Like all animal helpers, this animal will only appear when right and appropriate, and cannot be forced to visit you, commune with you, or share messages with you. Stomatopod can be effectively communicated with via methods of meditation and visualisation that rely heavily on sight and the different methods of seeing. Visually tricking ourselves with optical illusions, colour clashes or simply focusing on the picture of that which we want to contact will aid our connection with this creature. Observation of its habits, and our own, will also implicitly guide this creature into our lives and simply through vision alone we may come to learn much from it.