The idea of guardian angels has always been a popular one, and there’s probably a time in everyone’s life when they stop and think somebody must be watching over them…or at least a time when they hope that somebody is.
Although the idea of a guardian angel close by has an extremely personal feel to it for many of us, it’s actually a universal notion, and it’s been around for thousands of years. Also, if you look back through some of the world’s most prominent religions, there’s plenty to suggest that we each have one after all.
The belief in guardian angels has always led to more questions, such as how involved in our choices and lives are they? Are they the spirits of loved ones or are they assigned to us at birth? And can we contact them for help at will? Of course we can’t answer any of these for sure, but there’s plenty to suggest that they exist, no matter what your faith.
What is a Guardian Angel?
Traditionally, a guardian angel is believed to be a spirit or angel dedicated to watching over us. Angels are generally accepted as having individual roles, and the idea of an angel for every human being is a common one. Whether there is one angel for every one of us, or more than one person under the watch of each guardian angel is open to question, but angels are capable of being in more than once place at any time.
If each of us lives out our lives under the watchful gaze of a guardian angel, many of us assume that they intervene in times of danger, steering us from harm. Others believe that they can only guide us in the right direction, whilst some religions such as Islam see them as an observer on our shoulder, noting our behaviour.
Guardian Angels and Religion
Many believe that there’s no light without darkness on its edges, and there’s a widespread belief that for every guardian angel there’s also a personal demon, working against their efforts to protect us and trying to lead us astray. Either way, there isn’t a major religion today that hasn’t got the notion of guardian angels woven through its history.
The Catholic events calendar includes The Feast of the Guardian Angels on 2 October, started by the pope in 1608 as a way of recognising their protection. Angels are hugely influential in Judaism, and are seen as messengers of God. It is believed that every mitzvah creates an angel to shield and protect, so in this case they are created by the person rather than sent.
A Step Further
Whilst most of us either believe there is a guardian angel looking over us or not, there are occasional examples of those who have experienced their angel far more solidly than a feeling.
Christian mystics are amongst those who have reported speaking to and seeing their guardian angels over the centuries, and whole works of literature have been attributed to guardian angels said to have delivered the ideas to their writers.
No matter what your beliefs, there isn’t a major incident, war or crisis throughout history that hasn’t produced survivors with stories of vanishing helpers, guiding hands and sudden impulses that saved their lives…