Birth and Rebirth:
Persona 3 is a life simulator with both it's mechanics and with the story showing the cycle of life. The protagonist comes into the story not knowing anything in an unknown world, the Dark Hour, this represents birth. Soon after he meets his "family", the dorm members. The awakening of Orpheus symbolizes the beginning of life, a lack of knowledge as well as the beginning of a journey which is reflected in the Fool Arcana. As the story progresses, the protagonist atains more Arcana and forges bonds with people. By mastering these bonds he creates Orpheus Telos, a reborn Orpheus with no weaknesses. Orpheus Telos is of the World Arcana and represents the protagonist's rebirth as someone who understands their place in the world.
At the beginning, the cast comes into Tartarus with a sense of excitement for exploration of the unknown. In the game, you can't wait to proceed to the next floor. When secrets are revealed, the enemies become more challenging and the floors are repetitive representing the challenges and hardships of adulthood. Learning of the top represents middle age, when you have a sense of your life, and your journey, coming to an end. However, you still press onward showcasing a person coming to terms with their own end. The beginning is excitement, the middle is hardship and the end is realization and acceptence of death.
Every character has 2 Persona awakenings. The first unlocking the ability and the second is evolution. The first can be likened to the coming of adulthood. The former brings power whilst also making the user aware of the Dark Hour. Yukari states that awareness of the Dark Hour gives you strength but also robs you of your innocence and forces a harsh reality on you much like how becoming an adult gives you the freedom to choose for yourself but also forces you to look at life differently. The evolution symbolizes the character finding a purpose, their place in life that they are willing to fight and face death for. It shows true maturity after overcoming everything life has thrown at them, they find a purpose and no longer fear death.