Birds have been around for 150 million years and whether you live in a rural village or a bustling city, you will come across them almost every day.
We have looked to birds for inspiration as we see them effortlessly soar overhead, giving them a view of the world that we could only hope to see without jumping on a plane.
There are about 10,000 different species of bird known to us and they can range from being large and flightless, to small and silent which is one of the things that makes them so fascinating.
We have also domesticated some species such as budgies and parrots that we can have conversations with, even if they are generally limited to a few phrases.
Birds have been part of numerous cultures, religions, and traditions all over the world for millions of years and are still prevalent to this day with different bird species symbolizing different things.
In this piece, we will talk about the different ways in which birds have meaning including specific species of bird.
Bird Spirit Animal
A spirit animal is an entity that guides you through difficult times and your soul has called out for their help. You may see your spirit animal in your dreams, during meditation, as visions, or even in the physical world as patterns in the media or as the animal itself.
Having a bird as your spirit animal is one of high regard as they are seen as being closest to heaven and generally means that you are intelligent and observant of what is going on around you. As well as this, you are not afraid to step up and protect the ones you love when the situation arises, you are motivated by love, and being adaptable is more important to you than starting arguments.
However, there are some negatives to having a bird spirit animal as well such as having a mischievous side that can both be harmless but also deceiving, even to the ones you hold dear. When it comes to meeting new people or distancing yourself from drama, you can become invisible and ‘fly’ under the radar.
Having a bird as your spirit animal can teach you a lot about how to not be weighed down by negative thoughts or circumstances in life and that there is more to life that you may not be seeing.
A bird spirit will also guide you to the understanding that people are what matter in your life, not material possessions and not the pursuit of wealth.
If you let your spirit animal in, your life will become more fulfilling, and you will learn how to build valuable relationships in exchange for collecting possessions in the hope to fill the hole inside you.
Bird Totem Animal
The term totem animal originated in Native American culture which refers to the belief that you have animals that will guide you through life, like spirit animals.
There are eight of these animals for all cardinal directions as well as above, below, and walking on either side of you. However, these animals can come and go throughout your life but the totem animal is the one that stays.
You can connect with your totem animal through shared characteristics, visions, dreams, and a general interest that you may not have in other animals. The totem animal chooses you and you must be patient until they come to you.
Once you have connected with your totem animal, they are usually carved into totem poles or into smaller talismans.
Totem animals play a large part in symbolism in Native American culture, especially the eagle as they shared the same geographical location, crossing paths frequently.
Bird Power Animal
Power animals are another form of animal spirit guides that originated in Native American culture. It stems from the belief that all things including inanimate objects have a soul, known as animism.
Traditionally, Native American tribes have a ‘vision quest’ which is when a young boy who is entering adulthood goes through starvation or self-torture in order to connect with their power animal who is there to guide them through their next phase of life.
You are not limited to one power animal, and more may come to you when you need the guidance of different species and their characteristics.
For instance, if you are feeling defeated, a lion may come to you and if you are feeling reckless you may get a bird to help bring you back to stability.
Bird Native American Symbolism
Golden and bald eagles are considered sacred within Native American religion, traditions, and culture and are shown a deep level of respect and care.
Since eagles can fly in the sky, they are seen as the messenger between the prayers of humans and the creator. Eagles symbolize, wisdom, strength, and courage.
This high regard for the eagle began when the creator made all the birds and the eagle was seen as the leader and the master of the sky. The eagle can fly higher and see further than the other birds and therefore has a grander perspective on life.
Even the feathers of these eagles are considered sacred and worn with pride in their warbonnets, headdresses, accessories, and dreamcatchers. There is even a ceremony that takes place with an eagle feather being dropped and being picked up again with great care.
Eagle feathers are also used to decorate a pipe that is sacred to the Native Americans because it is a symbol of the all-knowing, all-powerful Great Spirit.
In some Native American cultures, they hold an eagle feather above someone’s head in with them happiness and bravery as well as peace and prosperity when waved over multiple people at once.
The feathers of an eagle are so sacred that they are favored over a horse or a teepee because it would be a great dishonor to the rest of the tribe if they were not.
Eagles were not the only bird that Native Americans symbolize, as the raven is seen as a trickster so that humans will accept light and wisdom into their lives. They are the ones that made light and have existed before all else.
Ravens were summoned to heal the sick and to clarify visions during rituals, they were also seen as the carrier of messages from the cosmos only when the Native American tribe was worthy of the message.
It is quite common to have dreams about birds, and it depends on the species, the color, and what they are doing in the dream in order to decipher what it means subconsciously or spiritually. In general, it is said that dreaming of birds symbolizes your hopes, aspirations, and goals.
If you dream of an injured bird, then it means that you will come across a difficult obstacle in the near future.
It can also mean that you need to be more expressive with your personality and open to sharing your feelings with others. If the bird is dead, it symbolizes failure, hopelessness, and grief but can also mean that you are starting a transformation in your life.
If you dream of birds fighting, it can foreshadow an argument that you will have or will witness between lovers, and if they are singing, you will hear some good news soon which is also symbolized when you see a raven in your dream.
Bird Tattoo Meaning
No matter the species of bird, they usually stand for the same thing which is freedom, which is valued by a lot of us humans who may feel trapped in life. Having a bird tattoo can also represent eternal life as birds can exist in the distance between earth and heaven.
Since birds are so versatile in their shapes, colors, and behavior, they are a popular animal to get tattoos of.
Even if you get a tattoo of a specific bird, it does not necessarily mean that you were trying to portray a message but when we take into account the history of the bird in different cultures and beliefs, they can take on a whole new meaning.
A tattoo of a dove usually represents Christianity as they are a symbol of the Holy Spirit as it was compared to a dove in the bible. Having a dove tattoo can also represent love and peace as they were associated with Aphrodite who was the goddess of love in Greek mythology.
Having a tattoo of a raven symbolizes intelligence and wisdom but is also quite mysterious as they can also be seen as a bad omen, foreshadowing sickness and death to the people that it lands beside.
However, ravens are also very intelligent and can represent magic and secrets, so it depends on what the person with the tattoo is wanting to convey.
Bird Spiritual Meaning
For millions of years, we have looked up to birds both literally and figuratively because they are so free and beautiful.
Birds are seen as messengers between realms and are commonly associated with angels because they both have wings, and some say that angels appear in the physical world as birds. As well as this, both angels and birds represent peace and wisdom that humans can learn a lot from.
There are also beliefs that birds carry the souls of the dead and when the loved person has passed, the bird will suddenly appear into their lives and will not be as wary as it would normally be.
However, they do not stay around forever and will soon take the soul to the next world or the afterlife.
Bird in Astrology & Zodiac Signs
In astrology, there are horoscopes that are deciphered based on the position of the planets at the time of your birth and predict daily or monthly events.
Sometimes, a horoscope will tell you of difficulty, but it is stated in ancient Hinduism scriptures that by feeding the birds, you will be brought luck and the horoscope will change.
Providing the birds around you with a supply of food and water will increase your prosperity and will minimize the sins that you made in your past life.
The Chinese zodiac consists of 12 zodiacs that each have a year dedicated to them that cycles every 12 years and if you are born in that year, you are born under that zodiac.
One of these zodiac signs is the rooster which is the 10th Chinese zodiac and in Chinese culture, the rooster symbolizes punctuality due to their crowing in the early morning as well as good luck as it would banish evil spirits.
Those born under the rooster are said to be optimistic, confident, intelligent, and sociable. They can adjust to new environments and will try and solve any difficult situations that may come their way.
Yet, they do have some negative personality traits such as being cocky to the point of arrogance sometimes and they crave attention which others may find intolerable.
They also hate lagging behind others which can make them good at improving themselves but can also make them suffer from burnout.
In Chinese zodiac beliefs, there are five elements consisting of metal, water, wood, fire, and earth that help us decipher more about someone’s personality – much like the elements in western astrology.
The five roosters and their traits are:
- Metal rooster: Focused, brave, and rational
- Water rooster: Sensitive, smart, and alluring
- Wood rooster: Humorous, energetic, and family-orientated
- Fire rooster: Trustworthy, punctual, and economical
- Earth rooster: Perceptive, active, and sociable
Bird Symbolic Meanings
Throughout this piece, we have touched on different birds and what their symbolic meanings are, but if you have come across a species of bird in your dreams or visions that haven’t been discussed yet then this may help you find out a bit more about them and what they are trying to tell you.
Or perhaps you are looking to get a tattoo or artwork done of a bird but are not yet sure of which one fits your values best.
- Hummingbird: Healing, good luck, and joy
- Blackbird: Magic, mystery, and curiosity
- Sparrow: Creativity, empowerment, and community
- Swallow: Loyalty, family, and victory
- Swan: Beauty, grace, and chastity
- Owl: Wisdom, knowledge, and independence
Birds can help us close the gap between the world that we walk on and the spiritual realm, simply by flying over our heads and showing us that we can see much more if we just change our perspective.
Having a bird as your spirit animal will teach you how to overcome negative emotions whilst showing you the value of the people you have in your life instead of material possessions.
All you have to do is let the spirit guide you and allow yourself to soar over the negativity that the world has put on you.
In the many other spiritual forms, a bird can come in such as a power or totem animal, the experience will give you newfound patience and wisdom that you may have been lacking before, but it is up to you to take the journey and spread your wings.
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