Both on the material and the spiritual planes the ark symbolizes the power to preserve all things and to ensure their rebirth.
Biologically speaking, it can be regarded as a symbol of the womb or of the heart, there being an obvious connection between these two organs.
The basic symbolism of the ark is the belief that the essences of the physical and spiritual life can be extracted and contained within a minute seed…
until such time as a rebirth creates the conditions necessary for the re-emergence of these essences into external life.
The ark, during the cosmic parlay, floats on the waters of the lower ocean.
The rainbow, in the realm of the ‘upper waters,’ is a sign of the restoration of the order which is preserved below in the ark.
Both figures together, being complementary, complete the circle of Oneness.
They therefore correspond to the two halves of the ancient symbol of the ‘world egg.’
As a symbol of the heart (or of the mind, or of thought) the image of the ark is similar to that of the drinking-vessel, so frequent in medieval mysticism.
from A Dictionary of Symbols by J.E. Cirlot
Images: Photographs of political hip-hop artist Keny Arkana in montage with a page from The Lindisfarne Gospels, an illuminated manuscript created around the year 700.