Symbolism of the Stag
The stag or deer symbolizes the anima, the feminine principle, because it is linked to Diana/Artemis, the Greek goddess of the moon and the hunt. The antlers of the stag symbolize the shadow. Sometimes in stories the stag swallows a snake and gets poisoned. Then he has to let go of his antlers to get rid of the venom. Once the venom is out, and the stag is purified, he can grow a new pair of antlers. This is about letting go of pride in order to transform, to renew yourself. But if you don’t let go of your pride to let out the venom, you will die, because the venom is in the unconscious which will become destructive.
The stag/deer is the carrier of light. It is the cross in mandala’s. It is the guide of the unconscious. It gives you new insights and it gives meaning to all symbols.
Now the patronus of Harry Potter suddenly makes sense, doesn’t it?!