Totem Animals

Page 117

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By CinnamonMoon

*Mary Summer Rain/On Dreams:
Owl characterizes heightened observational skills and developed awareness coupled with sharpened
perceptive abilities; wisdom resulting from high spiritual enlightenment. An *owlet* will signify one on
the correct spiritual path.

*D.J. Conway/Animal Magick:
A nocturnal bird of prey, these birds are related to the goatsucker and guacharo. They are found nearly
everywhere in the world. Owls have hooked beaks and curved talons. They range in size from about five
inches to over two feet. They have a variety of color combinations, such as black, white, gray, brown,
buff, and reddish. Their eyes are quite large for seeing in the dark, and their face is surrounded by a disk
of feathers. Their calls vary from cackling to low-pitched hooting.

Since ancient times, the owl has been associated with wisdom, deep learning, and the Underworld deities.
Later, it came to be connected with black magick. It is a bird of prey and a night hunter. The owl is a
powerful, noiseless flyer with good hearing and sight.

The owl is armed with vicious talons and a beak for protection and hunting. It is also so alert to its
surroundings that it appears to turn its head completely around when watching something.

The owl was early on a creature of the Great Goddess. It was often combined with the goddess figure to
make an owl-woman in early matriarchal cultures such as Le Tene. Stelae, figurines, and amulets
belonging to the Megalithic era of France, Spain, Portugal, and Great Britain show a goddess iwth great
staring eyes; this figure has come to be referred to as the Eye-Goddess.

In Peru and Ecuador, the owl image decorated spindle whorls along with a birth-giving goddess. In Crete,
during the third millennia B.C.E., jug-vases shaped like a winged owl with female breasts were a ritual
vessel; the breasts were perforated for pouring.

Originally, such Middle Eastern goddesses as Mari, Lilith, and Anath were closely connected with owls.
A Sumerian relief of the goddess Lilith shows her naked except for a horned tiara; she has owl-clawed
feet and is accompanied by owls. The Hebrew translation of this goddess's name is "screech owl".
As the patriarchies gained control, people began to believe the owl, and the goddesses with which it was
associated, was an ill-omened bird whose form could be taken by an evil spirit. Babylonians said that
hooting owls were the souls of dead mothers crying for their children. This gradually changed into the
owl being an evil spirit which prowled the night and carried children off.

In Egyptian hieroglyphs, the owl signifies death, night, the black Sun in the Otherworlds.

There are differences of opinion as to whether the Chinese and Japanese considered this bird to symbolize
evil and death. The Ainu of Japan, however, did call this bird "beloved deity".

Athene/Minerva had an olw as her sacred familiar; its image was cast on coins to represent the city of
Athens. Homer writes that Pallas Athene was sometimes portrayed with an owl-face. The Etruscan god of
night and darkness was associated with the owl and death; the Romans adopted this view of the bird,
saying that it was prophetic but its hooting prophesied death and misfortune. In Latin, the owl was called
strix (pl. striges), a word which later changed into the Italian word strega for witch.

To the Celts, in general, this bird was a sacred magickal creature, sometimes called the Night Hag and the
Corpse Bird. It symbolized Underworld deities, such as the Welsh god Gwynn ap Nudd, and the Welsh
Mood goddess Blodeuwedd.

The messengers of the Hindu death god Yama were usually two dogs, but occasionally he would send an
owl as his messenger.

The Scottish Gaelic word cailleach means "owl"; this word connects it with the goddess Cailleach, who
was a deity of death. The owl is identified with many Crone or Underworld goddesses in Europe and the
Mediterranean area. During the Middle Ages, the owl became known as the Night Hag.

This bird was called the Night Eagle by Native Americans. Most of them believed the owl was a bird of
sorcerers. However, the Cherokees held sacred both the owl and cougar for their ability to see in the dark.
they said the owl brought messages at night through dreams. This creature was Chief of the Night to the
Pawnees, who said it gave protection.

Superstitions: Many cultures believe that to see an owl is unlucky, while others consider this bird to be a
messenger and guide, particularly in spiritual affairs. Supposedly owls see in total darkness; the turth is
they must have some light just as cats do. They are not blind during the day. If you look into an owl's
nest, you will be unhappy the rest of your life. In Wales they say that if an owl hoots around houses, an
unmarried girl has lost her virginity. In France, if a pregnant woman hears an owl, the child will be a girl.
Magickal Attributes: Silent and swift movement; keen sight into obscure events; unmasking those who
would deceive you. In meditation, often a guide to and from the Underworld. Wisdom, magick, darkness,
freedom. Dreams, shape-shifting. Clairvoyance, astral projection, magick. A messenger of hidden truth,
secrets, and omens. Moon magick. Wisdom to make positive changes.

*Denise Linn/The Secret Language of Signs:
This is a very significant sign, as the owl is a powerful symbol of transformation. If this sign appears for
you, there is probably a transformation coming into your life.

Most cultures with an esoteric background honor the owl as a revered (and sometimes feared) sign. The
owl was feared because it was the sign of darkness and the unknown. Since the beginning of time,
humanity has been afraid of the dark, and the owl has always been associated with the unknown dark
dimensions. An Australian Aborigine elder explained to me that men were afraid of the owl because it
was a woman's totem and it represented the darkness of the unknown.

Owls were also thought to be associated with death as well as rebirth. Some Native American tribes
thought that owls housed the spirits of the dead. In Egyptian hieroglyphs, the owl symbolized death,
night, cold, and passivity. When one aspect of you dies, there is the opportunity for new growth in
another area of your life. It is a universal law. The owl sign represents death and rebirth within your life.
The owl is also the symbol of ancient wisdom from the inner realms. For within the darkness are dreams,
visions, and mystic insights. Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom, was depicted as having an owl on her
shoulder that revealed inner truths to her. Merlin, the old Celtic magician who helped the legendary King
Arthur, used an owl to gain entrance into the unseen dimensions. The owl sees in the darkness what others
cannot see. If this sign appears for you, you are being given the gift of being able to see and perceive the
truth. You will gain the ability to see clearly where things may seem dark. Your insights will be keen, and
the transformations around you will be profound.

*Zolar/Encyclopedia of Signs, Omens, and Superstitions:
Generally accepted is the association of owls with evil and misfortune. In a Sumerian tablet (dated 2300-
2000 B.C.), a nude goddess is shown surrounded on each side by an owl. Scholars believe her to be the
Goddess of Death.

Greek and Roman writers often refer to the owl as a bird of ill luck. Ovid and Pliny relate the bird to
death and hold that owl calls are sinister. Tradition held that, when an owl appeared in the capitol at
Rome, the place had to be cleaned with water and sulphur to drive away any evil the owl may have
brought. Romans used pictures of owls to combat the evil eye.

In ancient China, where owl sacrifices were often held, ornaments called "owl corners" were placed on
buildings to protect them from fire. In Persia, the owl is spoken of as "the angel of death." In Israel,
however, little gray owls are considered good omens when they appear near crops. In Athens, the little
owl was associated with the goddess Athena, who ruled the night. Due to its commonality and
friendliness, it became an emblem of the city. A common Athenian saying indicating victory: "There goes
an owl."

The tradition of hanging up owls in order to deflect storms is an ancient one. Likewise, owls hung up with
wings outspread were said to avert hail and lightning. An owl placed over a child's cot was used to
frighten away evil spirits by tribesmen in northern Asia, and sleep can be induced by placing owl feathers
under the pillow of a restless child, says an East Indian tradition.

In Great Britain, the owl was held ominous. Chaucer speaks of it as a bringer of death. Shakespeare, in
Julius Caesar (Act 1, Scene 3), lists it among other evil omens.

Owls were commonly associated with sorcery among African tribes. In Madagascar, the souls of sorcerers
were called "owls". In Nigeria the Yoruba tribe believe wizards send owls to kill people as their emissaries.

In American folklore, various traditions exist. The Pawnee Indians believed owls were protective; the
Ojibwas thought evil spirits often appeared as owls. If a Seminole Indian heard an owl hoot, he would
whistle back. Should no further response be heard, he would conclude that "death" was nearby. On the
other hand, should the owl hoot back, such was considered a sign of good luck.

Although the owl is often regarded as a symbol of wisdom, it is not unusually intelligent, nor is it blind
during the day, and common among American folklore is the belief that an owl can wring its own neck.
In the Alsace, the owl is thought to be a messenger of death. Should its cry be heard near the room of an
ill person, it is said that the person will not recover. Also, an owl was believed to keep rats away if nailed
to a barn door, and, in Normandy, an omelet made of owls' eggs is believed to keep a drunk person sober!
If owls' eggs are given to a child, it will insure lifelong temperance and, if made in soup, they will cure
epilepsy and darken gray hair. Owl broth given to a child is reputed to cure whooping cough, according to
a Yorkshire belief.

In Scotland, tradition says that seeing an owl in the daylight means ill fortune will come to the beholder.
Should one look into the nest of an owl, it is said he will become melancholy and morose for the rest of
his life. Should an owl hoot among houses, says a Welsh tradition, a maiden will lose her virginity. Still
to be mentioned is Pliny's belief that an owl's heart placed on a woman's breast will cause her to yield all
her secrets.

*Lady Stearn Robinson & Tom Gorbett/The Dreamer's Dictionary:
This hooting night bird in your dream is an omen of reverses and/or disappointments, unless you drove it
away, in which case you can expect an improvement in your circumstances. An owl in the house forecasts
family discord.

*Barbara G. Walker/The Woman's Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets:
Romans called the owl strix (pl. striges), the same word that meant "witch". Greeks said the owl was
sacred to Athene, their own version of the ancient Mesopotamian "Eye-Goddess" whose staring owl-eyed
images have been found throughout the Middle East, especially around the Mother-city of Mari. The owl
was also the totem of Lilith, Blodeuwedd, Anath, and other versions of the Triple Goddess of the moon.
According the Christian legend, the owl was one of "three disobedient sisters" who defied God and was
transformed into a bird who never looked at the sun. It is easy enough to see in this idea the shape of the
Goddess herself, and the church's hostility to her. One of the medieval names for the owl was "night hag";
it was said to be a witch in bird form. The owl is still associated with witches in the symbols of

The owl is a bird of wisdom because it used to embody the wisdom of the Goddess Certain medieval
magic charms apparently sought to use the bird's oracular power against its former mistress, woman. If an
owl could be slain and its heart pulled out and lid on the left breast of a sleeping woman, the woman
would talk in her sleep and reveal all her secrets. This seems to have been a basis of the expression,
"heart-to-heart talk," which meant a woman's secret conversation with her familiar.

*Timothy Roderick/The Once Unknown Familiar:
Key Words: Stealthy, territorial, precise
Magical Influences: Spirituality, lunar healing, magical vision, ability to see spirits; can create closure,
allows one to see past lives.

Personality: Owls are usually industrious and intelligent. They are innately aligned with death and the
mysteries surrounding death. They can become engrossed in this subject, but ultimately they affirm the
positive life-after-death theme. Owls have few enemies, but when they attack, they strike with a deadly
accuracy. Owls need to have a place to call their own--even if it's just the corner of a room.

*Brad Steiger/Totems:
The old Roman word for owl is strix, the same as their word for witch. Throughout northern Europe, the
owl is also associated with witchcraft. Wicca means "wise ones", and the Witches of this tradition
emphasize the owl as one of their principal animal totems.

Universally, the owl is a symbol for wisdom, and it is the totem animal for such ancient goddesses as
Athene, Lilith, and Blodeuwedd, the Welsh Virgin Goddess of spring. Tlazolteotl, the Aztec goddess,
shepherded the souls of women who died in childbirth and had the owl and the snake as her totem animals.

To the Winnebago, the owl ruled the north, the land of the unknown, of cold, dark forests; of death. Many
Native American tribes believed that if they heard an owl calling their name, they were soon to join the
Grandparents in the spirit world. In Celtic lore, the owl was also the "corpse bird" that carried the recently
deceased to the underworld.

In the Rio Grande area of the Southwest, owls were considered the familiar that witches prefer over black
cats. If one heard an owl hooting above one's rooftop at night, it was certain that evil was soon to visit the

The Zuni believed that if a family incurred the wrath of a witch, the evil-worker would plant owl feathers
in their cornfield, thus summoning a strong wind to destroy the crop.

The Apaches kept a wary eye out for Big Owl, a bloodthirsty, evil giant who took the form of a huge owl
and carried humans off to eat them.

Although the Japanese generally regard the owl as a wise and benevolent night creature, most of the
cultures of Asia fear the bird as a demon of darkness that delights in carrying off human souls.
Conversely, in the Polynesian tradition, the owl is a special protector in battles or danger and brings back
to life any souls that may be lost and wandering.

If you have long cherished the owl as a totem animal, you are quite likely a student of the mysterious and
the unknown who loves to ferret out clues to the unexplained enigmas of existence on the Earth Mother.
You probably enjoy watching magicians perform their craft, and you may even be an amateur magician.
Even your closest friends may consider you something of a paradox--on the one hand, you seem to
worship logic and reason; on the other, you appear to prefer fantasy and the illogical.

With the owl as your spirit helper, you will not cease to explore the most distant perimeters of the
unknown. And you will not cease spending an equal amount of time in the Silence, receiving messages
from the Great Mystery.

Bobby Lake-Thom/Spirits of the Earth:
All Owls are a bad sign, but different kinds bring somewhat different messages, and different degrees of
power and knowledge. Western people believe in the "wise old owl" image, which is partially correct
because the Owl symbolically has this kind of power, but it can be used in a negative way. The Owl is a
favorite ally of sorcerers who have clairvoyant powers but use them for selfish desires: for ego, for profit,
or to control and manipulate others. The Owl is considered a bad sign and bad power by most native
American tribal groups. It is a messenger of evil, of sickness, or of a fatal accident. It is also considered a
sign of death. Therefore, if you hear or see an Owl hooting around your house, it is considered a bad sign.
The closer it is to the house, the closer the relative to be affected. it warns of a potential death that can
come in the form of accidents or diseases. The book "I Heard the Owl Call My Name", by Margaret
Craven, and the current movie "Thunderheart" both provide examples of the Owl symbolically serving as
a messenger of death.

Although most Native American groups have historically considered the Owl a negative sign and bad
power, they still respect it, realizing that there are two sides to everything in life. That which is negative
can be turned around into a positive situation, if one has the proper kind of knowledge and esoteric
training. For example, there have been a number of different occasions in my life when I was driving at
night and an Owl flew across the front of the car to warn us of danger. In one situation black ice was on
the road, which was difficult to see. Another time a horse was standing in the middle of the road. And
there have been numerous times when we couldn't see a narrow bridge covered by fog. The Owls warned
us of the potential danger by flying in the direction of the bridge. On another occasion the Owl
forewarned us of a bad car accident caused by a drunken driver, which had blocked the roadway. In each
situation I heeded the warning, slowing the vehicle down to a very cautious speed and looking carefully
for the potential danger. I also took time to thank the Owl for giving me the omen and message, and I
sang a prayer song for protection. When such bad signs or omens appear, we are taught to burn a smudge
stick made from cedar or sage, and pray to the Great Creator and good spirits for protection. (Some Indian
people carry sweet grass braids and/or angelica root in their cars while traveling for this purpose.)

*Patricia Telesco/The Language of Dreams:
Wisdom. The ability to traverse the figurative darkness in your life. As a companion and messenger to the
Greek goddess Athena, an owl may presage new artistic abilities or the development of a warrior's spirit.
A type of death dream. In Greece, dreaming of an owl foretold of death, the Vedic god of the dead
sometimes sent owls as messengers, and the Celts associated owls with the god of the underworld. Native
Americans call owls the "night eagle," and consider them a symbol of silent observation with potentially
deceitful motivations. In Hopi tradition, the gift of an owl feather bestows truthfulness on the receiver. By
accepting such a token in a dream, you accept yourself. The ability to see what others are trying to hide
from you, as the owl's golden yellow eyes pierce the night. Moving silently, or remaining silent in a
situation. Owls are considered silent fliers. Snow owls in particular are able hungers, representing the
instinct to know where your sustenance lies, and how to effectively reach it.

*Jamie Sams & David Carson/Medicine Cards:
Deception. Owl medicine is symbolically associated with clairvoyance, astral projection, and magic, both
black and white. Owl is called Night Eagle on several medicine wheels used by Amerindian teachers.
Traditionally, Owl sits in the East, the place of illumination. Since time immemorial, humanity has been
afraid of the night, the dark, and the unseen--waiting fearfully for the first crack of morning light.
Conversely, night is Owl's friend.

Owl hunts its prey at night. Not only can Owl see in the dark, it can also accurately pinpoint and identify
any sound. This gives it the great advantage when seeking food. Owls are the night hunters. Some native
people are fearful of Owl and call its feathers "deceiver feathers." An Owl feather is silent. You cannot
hear Owl when it flies, but its prey definitely knows when it strikes, for its beak and talons are razor sharp.

Owl is oftentimes the medicine of sorcerers and witches. If Owl is your medicine, you will be drawn to
magical practices and perhaps explore the dark arts. You should resist any temptation to practice black
magic or *any* art that takes energy away from aother person or being. If you have Owl medicine, these
night birds will have a tendency to collect around you, even in the daytime, because they recognize a
kinship with you.

Is it any wonder that in many cultures Owl is the symbol for wisdom? This is because Owl can see that
which others cannot, which is the essence of true wisdom. Where others are deceived, Owl sees and
knows what is there.

Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom, had a companion Owl on her shoulder which revealed unseen
truths to her. Owl had the ability to light up Athena's blind side, enabling her to speak the whole truth, as
opposed to only a half truth.

If Owl is your personal medicine, no one can deceive you about what they are doing, no matter how they
try to disguise or hide it from you. You may be a little frightening to be around, since so many people
have ulterior motives which you see right through. If you are unaware of your medicine power, you may
take your keen insights and abilities for granted. Others never do. You may frighten them and reflect their
blindness, for you cannot be fooled. Owl medicine people know more about an individual's inner life than
that person knows about herself or himself.

If you have pulled the Owl card, you are being asked to use your powers of keen, silent observation to
intuit some life situation. Owl is befriending you and aiding you in seeing the total truth. Owl can bing
you messages in the night through dreams or meditation. Pay attention to the signals and omens. The truth
always brings further enlightenment.

Contrary: If you have Owl upside-down in your cards, you have been greatly deceived by either yourself
or another. Perhaps witchcraft or black magic is being used against you, or maybe you are using
witchcraft or sorcery to aid you when yous should be praying and asking the Great Spirit for guidance.
The message is to befriend the darkness inside yourself. Look deeply, and soon the bright light of dawn
will illuminate you. Then ask yourself what you are in the dark about. How and by whom are you being
deceived? Have you lied to yourself about someone or something? Are you being greatly deceived, or just
slightly deceived? Owl tells you to keep an eye on your own property and your loved ones. Remember
that Owl is always asking, "Who?"

*Unknown sources:
About Owl. There are very few Native tribes, and I say tribes and not Nations, that have a deathly fear of
the Owl. The Apache Nation is a perfect example. The Nation as a whole does not fear the owl and, in
fact, some wore owl feathers on their clothing and headdresses. It is the Mescalero that fears the owl. I
know a Mescalero medicine woman (a real, practicing medicine woman) who is so terrified of the owl she
does a special ceremony if she even sees a photo of one.

This apparently comes from the beliefs of these various tribes, few as they are, that the owl carries the
spirit of the recently deceased to the Great Spirit. Thus, the death messenger. The sound of an owl makes
these people stop in their tracks. The sight of one is enough to scare them, and heaven forbid, if one flew
at them, they would surely die of fright.

As a totem, owl medicine, as I said last night, is a feminine trait. It is at home and comfortable in the
night. it has great awareness of all that is around it at all times. It has a predator vision, which means it
sees clearly what it looks at. It has great intuition; it is the totem of psychics and clairvoyants. It has the
courage to follow its instincts. it is a meat eater, which means it can be a fierce warrior if challenged, or if
something dear to it is threatened.

Owls come in all sizes from a tiny miniature that actually lives inside the cactus in the desert, to the great
horned owl which is the only bird that can outfly the golden eagle. A fully grown great horned is an awe
inspiring creature. Its talons are furry, and closely resemble the paws of a baby mountain lion with claws extended.

Owl medicine is wonderful to have. Those who carry it cannot be conned because their vision shows them
the truth of the situation.

The Druid Animal Oracle by Phillip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm
Owl: Detachment, Wisdom, Change

Owl teaches us the wisdom of turning a disadvantage into an advantage. For most birds, the
coming of darkness renders it impossible for them to feed, but the owl's exceptional hearing
enables it to pick out and swoop on unsuspecting prey during the night. Twilight has been
described as owl-light, and going for a quiet walk in the woods at this shimmering time of
twilight is an excellent way to develop a sensibility to the Otherworld and the inner soul of
Nature. You may feel drawn to a study of esoteric lore or clairvoyancy. Working with the owl as
your ally will help you to do this.

Contrary may indicate that you need to be wary of withdrawing too much from the world. An
ability to be detached and discerning is an asset, unless it becomes a defense against being fully
alive with all the vulnerability this entails. Perhaps there is not such a need for secrecy or holding
back. The owl can signal a time of change, of initiation, of new beginnings. It can portend the
death of one thing, but also the birth of another. An old Sussex saying is "When owls whoop at
night, expect a fair morrow." Expect a bright dawn and it will surely come.


During the summer before EarthSky and I were married, we were talking about getting married,
and about moving to Canada. In June I miscarried, but we were sure that this soul didn't want to
come through just yet, that (s)he was waiting for Canada. That whole summer, while we were in
the midst of wedding thoughts, Canada thoughts and children thoughts, we were accompanied by
Owl. Owl would start off near our window, and as we moved outside, Owl would move a bit
further away but still within sight; on the chimneys of the terrace houses behind us. Owl in the
middle of a city wasn't very common, so we were rather surprised that this Owl was where it
was. And at one point, there were two Owls, communicating together.

We remember one night specifically. We'd been working at home, into the evening hours, it was
coming up to midnight. As we were getting ready to have "dinner" (our schedule was a late one
at that time... we even went out for two hour walks after "dinner") we heard Owl. We opened the
back door, and heard that the back neighbors were playing music. "From the New World", by
Dvorak. This is a piece that EarthSky and I both have an affinity with, we recognized it
immediately. To our surprise, Owl was sitting on the roof of the house where that music was
coming from, and Owl was punctuating the music at rhythmically correct moments with her
rather magical hooting. EarthSky and I felt that this was a sign that the "New World" was
coming. That new world did arrive, within five months of that night, we were married, living in
Canada, and pregnant with our firstborn.

We also feel that the miscarriage and the constant rejections to job applications that Earthsky
was getting (he'd get to the final shortlist, but get rejected for not having published enough
papers... ) were comforted by Owl's presence. Owl kept our hopes up, our dreams alive, and kept
us in touch with our intuition. We could have seen it as "negative"... "see, Owl is telling us that
this plan isn't working, that this is wrong". But there was something about Owl. The death of the
fetus, the death of our time in Europe, the rebirth into our new lives as friends and partners, our
rebirth into Canada and the birth of our son. We do feel that Owl was the bringer of this medicine.

“If you have long cherished the owl as a totem animal, you are quite likely a student of the
mysterious and the unknown who loves to ferret out clues to the unexplained enigmas of
existence on the Earth Mother. You probably enjoy watching magicians perform their craft, and
you may even be an amateur magician. Even your closest friends may consider you something of
a paradox--on the one hand, you seem to worship logic and reason; on the other, you appear to
prefer fantasy and the illogical.”

BTW, anyone else getting images of Owl in "Winnie the Pooh" and Owl in "Little Bear"?

Spirit of Owl
Role: ~Messenger~
Lesson: Trust
Element: Air
Wind: North ~Land of the Elders/Wisdom~
Medicine: Shape shifting

All Owls are Messenger Totems and each separate breed of Owl will have Medicine that is
unique to that specific Winged One while there will also be Medicine (and hence Keywords) that
are also shared across all specific Owl breeds. When looking to the particular species of Owl
(e.g. Snowy, Barn, etc.,) it is important to not only consider and incorporate the keywords unique
to that specific breed, but to also integrate the Shared keywords as well.

Messenger between Planes - Clairvoyance - Wisdom
Reincarnation - Freedom - Sight beyond Illusion
Secrecy - Mystery - Lunar Magic
Healing - Conveyor of Omens
Swift Movement - Prophecy
Shape Shifting

Messenger between Planes
Like all Bird Totems, the Owl is considered to be a Messenger Totem, responsible for carrying
messages from the Blue Road of Spirit to the Red Road of Physical Life. As such, he/she delivers
omens, messages and information from the Elders to we of the Two-Legged as we journey along
this Earth walk.

As mentioned above, there are a wide variety of breeds within the Owl family, and while it is
important to consider the specific keywords and Medicine particular to each individual subspecies,
it is equally important that the keywords that are common to all Owls be kept in mind.
As this pertains to the Medicine of ~Messenger~, each owl will manifest this Role differently. For
instance, the Snowy Owl is the Animal Spirit that is a Messenger who is responsible for carrying
Wisdom from the Elders and the two-legged beside whom Snowy Owl flies will have the gift of
Channeling the words of the elders via inspired written words or ~automatic writing~. By
contrast, the Great Horned Owl is the Messenger that Portends new cycles and the vehicle
through which the two-legged beside whom Horned Owl flies will receive their messages is most
often via the gift of Clairaudience.

In assessing what the specific Role is ~assigned~ to each sub-species of Owl and blending that
with the General Role of ~Messenger~, the two-legged beside whom Owl flies may better
embrace and fulfill the unique Medicine of carrying messages between planes, assisting both the
evolution of his/her own soul, and enlightening their fellow two-leggeds with Wisdom carried
over from the Higher Planes and dimensions.

Sight beyond Illusion
One of the principle characteristics that all Owls are recognized for, are their large and alert
eyes. As most Owls are nocturnal creatures (active at night, and sleep during daylight hours)
their eyes must be able to accommodate this lifestyle. In response, Nature has outfitted these
splendid creatures beautifully, giving them a binocular vision and to have the capacity to
penetrate the darkness in search of food and to alert them to any threat or encroachment upon
their territory via the specialized cones and rods of the retina which allow in greater amounts of
light in the darkest of conditions.

Much like their Animal Totem, the two-legged beside whom Owl flies will possess an uncanny
ability to penetrate beyond the masks, untruths, "white lies" and deceits of others in order to see
to the Truth of the matter, individual or experience. Depending upon which breed of Owl one
journeys around the Sacred Hoop with, this insight may or may not be shared directly with
Others. For instance, if one has Screech Owl as a Totem, then the human counterpart is not only
to be able to see beyond a mask worn, but part of their responsibility is to share this insight with
the person of whom the information has been gleaned. If the breed of Owl is the Barn Owl, then
the knowledge is there to either be transmitted via thought to the subject of the scrutiny, or to be
kept for information purposes only by the Owl Soul. Again, by looking not only at the broader
implications of this Keyword as it relates to Owl Totems in general, but to the specific
manifestations unique to each breed, the two-legged blessed with this most perceptive and
intelligent of Totems may better align with his/her own Life Path.

Throughout the ages, the Owl has been a symbol of Wisdom from many tribes throughout North
America to ancient Greek and Roman mythology, Owl is synonymous with the Gift of Higher
Knowledge and insight. In Greek mythology, Athena (the Goddess of Wisdom) was often seen
with an owl either perched atop her shoulder or flying along beside her.

The large eyes of these beautiful birds certainly seem to reflect an otherworldly knowledge and
wisdom, their stare is direct and penetrating as though they see beyond the masks that are
presented to them to the truths that lay beneath. Likewise, the one beside whom Owl journeys
will be gifted with a higher wisdom. In some instances, this is reflected as one who has attained
great academic heights in traditional educational systems and universities, yet more often than
not, Owl Wisdom is forged via life experiences which are later transmuted into greater
understanding. At times, this Wisdom is boldly shared and the two-legged blessed to have the
companionship of this Totem will often be sought out for advice. At other times, this Wisdom is
very circumspect with the human counterpart reticent to impart the depth of their Knowledge to
others out of either a lack of self-worth, or born in the sense that their Wisdom will not be fully
understood or embraced, and so they chose to remain silent.

For the one beside whom Owl flies, the Gift of Wisdom is a life-long quest and within the hearts
and minds of these souls is a never ending desire to know more. Often, they are voracious
readers and will feel a little unbalanced when they are not entertaining their minds enough
which may eventually manifest as physical and/or emotional ailments, hence it is vital for their
sense of equilibrium to challenge their minds via new studies, reading stimulating books or
taking up new endeavors that will later be fashioned from the base material of knowledge into
applied principles that become another wellspring of Owl Wisdom.

As an Animal Totem, the Owl, with its ability to cross from the plane of the ~Red Road of
Physical Life~ to the ~Blue Road of Spirit~, symbolizes the continual state of the Soul’s
Transformation. As such, these Animal Spirits have been associated with the process of
Reincarnation, or the evolutionary process of the soul as it enters into the Great Schoolroom of Life.

Our souls exist as an eternal spark of energy that then chooses to enter onto the Sacred Hoop via
taking up the Robe of Physical Life. With each successive incarnation, we inhabit a new body,
traverse the Medicine Wheel absorbing a new set of Life Lessons unique to each experience, and
then transition from this physical plane once more as pure energy. It is believed that at this
point, as the soul journeys along the outer rim of the Medicine Wheel, we review the lessons that
have been learned and absorbed from the "life" left behind, and next examine what Lessons &
Goals we have yet to fulfill, as well as what Gifts might we bring in with us to assist the All. At
this point, we then re-emerge once more on the Hoop at the Golden Doorway, arriving in a new
body with a new set of Life Lessons.

For the one beside whom Owl Journeys, there will be an innate understanding of the recurring
cycle of Life, Death and Rebirth. Often times the Owl individual will have very intense past-life
connections and memories. These will either be subtle nuances that draw them to places and
individuals to whom they feel an immediate bond, or the memories of lives previously
experienced will be brimming so close to the surface that they will often surface as very vivid
dreams and conscious recollections. Equally, it is also quite likely that this same gift for seeing/
feeling other lifetimes led will be transmitted to being able to offer insight into the past lives of
Others, affording assistance in the understanding of Lessons learned, those still needing
learning, and any "karmic" balances left unchecked. This is a fine line however, as the challenge
here for the Owl Soul is to not become so engrossed by memories and fascination with lifetimes
past that they lose sight of their ~Now~, for although the past serves as a reminder of where we
have previously walked, the soul lessons we have learned and the connections we have made, the
focus of the Soul must always be in going forward and embracing with the enthusiasm and trust
of an innocent child, the here and ~Now~.

Shape Shifting
The Owl is thought to be one of several Animals blessed with the Medicine of Shape-shifting -
that is the ability for them to change their form from that of the Owl to a human form, and back
again. With the Owl in particular, this shape-shifting ability is closely linked with Lunar Magic
since this beautiful creature is sister to the Moon. In observing the phases of the Moon, we
witness ever shifting and changing cycles that effect all within the domain of Luna, including the
inhale and exhale of the Ocean’s waves.

Much like their Animal Totem, the two-legged with Owl as an animal ally will shift and
transform themselves like the waxing and waning phases of the moon and the ebb and flow of the
ocean’s tides. It isn’t so much that their emotions are like shifting, restless sands as that they are
always partially attuned to the calls of many different planes and energies. Obviously, if this
tendency to be completely open and receptive is not monitored, some measure of protection
taken to guard against becoming drained or distracted, such heightened sensitivity can lead to
mental, emotional or physical exhaustion. Yet when the delicate balance between grounding and
receptivity is found and practiced, the Owl Soul takes flight into a higher form of awareness,
intuition and Light.

Owl sees and knows the truth. It's ability to navigate through the darkest night and bring back
nourishment for itself and others is the foundation of this essence. When you have lost your way,
owl essence will guide you back to your proper path and wisdom.

Expanded Definition - Death and rebirth, releasing that which has outlived its benefit and
usefulness in your life, actual physical death transition, can be placed in a bowl of water and
used to help earth bound Souls find their guides and loved ones. Clearing a home or land of
negative energy. Starting over in a new life or releasing the ties that kept you bound to the old
one. Enhances clairvoyance, clairaudience, communication from one's Master Guides and

Owls have long been associated with both death and wisdom. In Greek mythology an Owl was
sacred to Pallas Athene, the Goddess of wisdom, because it sat on her shoulder and lit up her
blind side. Their association with death comes from their peerless ability as hunters of the night,
they are able to navigate through the most densely forested areas in order to seek out and
capture their prey. Crows will mob Owls when they are near their territory for they know that
when night falls, Owl becomes a formidable predator that will return to the Crow's nesting areas
in search of a tasty Crow dinner.

Yet even so, the Owl provides a vital function in keeping bird, rodent and insect populations in
check; too many of any species is detrimental to the balance of all. So it is with other things in
our own lives, for if we have too many possessions, too many projects, too much of anything, it
limits and restricts our ability to move freely through the different areas of our lives and the
result is stagnation which leads to the death of joy, happiness and abundance. Owl medicine
then becomes crucial in helping us to clear out that which is no longer needed or wanted. What
may seem like a death to us in the giving up of something may be for another the birth and
manifestation of a dream. We are most likely to lose our way when we become enmeshed in the
"shoulds" and "must haves" in life, most of which come not from our inner selves but from the
opinions and beliefs of those around us. We can spend so much time listening to others about
what we should want ( and the commercials on the telly and radio are prime examples of this!)
that we ignore what we really want. We find ourselves spiraling downwards into the darkness
because we have become so busy thinking we must pursue this or hunt that, most of which
provides very little, if any, real nourishment.

Think for a moment what your life would be like if you were able to jettison anything that did not
speak to you on a Soul level. What would remain? What then would you "hunt" because it
provided for you on all levels? That is what Owl medicine teaches us to do. We find that as we
begin to move through the process of what we truly want, clearing the old to make way for the
new birth of the Self that is close at hand, we find that other obstacles, limitations, fears and
anxieties also begin to "die" in our lives. They no longer have the hooks to remain attached to
our energy fields and without our support, they must die.

Owl knows that all apparent manner of death is in fact a liberation into a new life. Something
must first be cleared away for anything new to be born. When a person moves, leaves a job or
relationship, has a baby, adopts a new animal friend, something in the old way of life had to die
for the new to be created. At the time it may seem incredibly painful because we have been
taught that death is an ending, not a new beginning, and that what is in the process of being born
is always more beneficial than the old. The pain and grief is extended and heightened when we
try to hang on to what was because we believe that s the best we would ever have. The unknown
can seem dreadfully forbidding, how will we cope, who will be there if we stumble, what if we fail?

Owl can take us beyond those thoughts and fears, for Owl sees far into the future and knows that
even after the darkest night there is a new dawn that is approaching. It is as inevitable as babies
crying and of buds bursting for th from plants in the spring. From every death something new
must emerge for life is ever renewing itself. The Crow that was taken by an Owl last summer may
reappear the following spring as a nestling. The Berries that were eaten by a Bear one year may
reappear the next as a bird, an ant or a human being. All of life is interconnected and we are all
part and parcel of the same fabric that wends its way through the stories of our own life and
death. Death then becomes not a loss but a new adventure to be explored with great abandon
and joy.

Chakra - Root, Crown
Essential Oil - Rosemary, Lime, Cinnamon
Chant - Ti mah su
Planet - Pluto
Other Supportive Measures - Write a letter to a loved one who has passed over or light a candle
for them for 7 consecutive days. Look back at some of the "deaths" in your life, how have they
helped you to become the person you are today? Join a discussion or support group for death
and dying, study the planet Pluto in your natal chart and note what deaths have occurred
through the house where it is found and also the house where Scorpio is found on the cusp or
contained within it. Hold a releasing ceremony, symbolically burying or burning anything you
no longer want or need in your own life. Make up your own ritual for this and follow your own
inner knowing or call upon Owl to help show you the way.

Owl medicine can help a person to extract secrets, to see that which is hidden in the darkness
and is very powerful for soul retrievals for this reason. Many shamans, psychic healers and
mediums have owl medicine either as a primary totem or can call upon one as needed. They can
see clear through to the core reason for any type of imbalance and then they can spot the proper
medicine needed to heal the imbalance.

Owls are also fabulous at keeping rodent populations under control. In Eastern Oregon for
example farmers have begun encouraging Barn Owls to nest on their property because of their
ability to outdo the family cat in keeping rodents under control! So Owl medicine can also help
us to keep the pests in our own lives at bay and keep them from becoming overly destructive. In
healing this medicine can become very important as in cases of Cancer where they "pest" in this
case the cancer cells, are multiplying so rapidly they threaten to destroy the fabric of the body
physical. In actual fact, the body contains numerous cells and virus's and bacteria's that if not
kept under control would kill us within days and yet in the proper numbers are actually highly
beneficial to the body!

So too are rodent populations needed in order to maintain balance in the world. Owl knows what
is needed in the proper amounts and what needs to be released, the way in which the Owl
Medicine person does this though depends on the relationship they have with their own Owls and
what the Owl suggests to them as the proper balancing measure.

Owl people also need to get a certain amount of daytime/solar energy via the sun, yellow
crystals or flowers and so forth lest they become out of balance with the nocturnal side of their
nature. It can be easy for Owl people to want to shun the daylight as they tend to be more
comfortable at night, and yet they too need the balance that the solar world provides. They might
feel overly exposed when out in the daylight and thus it helps them to wear a talisman or shield
of some sort where they feel they are protected from the energies of others as often they are
extremely sensitive and psychic.

If you need to know the truth of something, ask an Owl person or one who has Lynx or Bobcat
medicine! All three tend to see what others do not or cannot and are very reliable and accurate
in what they pick up about a person or situation. The Owl person, though, is far more likely to
tell you what they see, the Lynx and Bobcat person usually keeps many things to themselves.
Other raptors such as Hawks, Eagles and so forth are associated with Owls as well because they
frequently share the same territory although there is the odd skirmish now and again. Owl
people frequently find that they may have to stand their ground in life when they find themselves
challenged by someone else, yet if they are coming from what they know is true, that always does
come to the forefront in the end! Owl people also do tend to be very wise, often beyond their
years because they do see far more than many others do. They tend to be mystical, rather
magical people and often are highly interested in magic and ritual at which they are extremely
gifted! Merlin had an Owl for example, this is why he was such a wonderful Magician!
(From: http://morningstar.netfirms.com/owltotem.html)

There are approximately 135 species of Owl, seventeen which are found in North America. Their
secretive habits, quiet flight and various calls from whistles, screeches and hoots, have made
them objects of superstition and even fear in some parts of the world. Some native tribes see the
owl as a symbol of death while other tribes believe they embody the mysteries of shamanism and
sorcery. Individuals with this totem are private complex people and don't like others to know
what they are really thinking. This can sometimes lead to misunderstandings especially in the
area of personal relationships.

Owls have many abilities which set them apart from all other birds. Their wings which are
extremely soft and thick, allow them to fly silently as they can swoop down on unsuspecting prey.
They are able to slip in and out of places unnoticed and can teach us how to do the same.
Their eyes are large and forward facing giving them a wise appearance. They have a greater
range of motion in their necks than any other animal with a spinal column. Owls turn their heads
rather than their eyes, which are stationary. Their night vision is so powerful that they can see
prey when the light is the equivalent of a candle burning 2500 feet away!

Their powers of vision are matched by their almost otherworldly hearing abilities. In studies
done with owls that were placed in totally light free rooms, the owls were able to locate a mouse
by sound alone. Those with this medicine are usually gifted with clairvoyant and clairaudient
abilities. Souls who are born with this totem have chosen a path which suggests a need to refine
and perfect these gifts for the aid of others. They make excellent therapists, psychologists and counselors.

Active at dawn and dusk owls are sometimes referred to as the night eagle, a messenger from the
darkness and a guide through all the mysteries that it contains. It teaches us how to embrace our
personal darkness without fear. Owls are sometimes thought to come to those that are about to
die. This does not mean a physical death as much as it means the letting go of some part of
yourself that is not serving you. Owls with their spectral senses help guide us through the dark
tunnels of fear, change and uncertainty to the brilliant light shining at the other end. If the owl
appears in your life thank it for its willingness to guide you through its shadowy realm to the
other side of promise and joy.

(From: http://www.sayahda.com/cyc3.html)

Owl's Wisdom Includes:
• Stealth
• Secrecy
• Silent and swift movement
• Seeing behind masks
• Keen sight
• Messenger of secrets and omens
• Shape-shifting
• Link between the dark, unseen world and the world of light
• Comfort with shadow self
• Moon magick
• Freedom

(From: http://www.geocities.com/RainForest/4076/index3.html)

Susie Green Animal Wisdom
Owl - Seeking the hidden - White Magic

Owl glides silently through ancient brooding forests, their trees laden with snow, glittering
in the slight of a pal cold moon. All seems still as olw lands high in the branches of a
tower a hush has descended on the world, but for Owl the forest is alive with sound.
Beneath the carpet of snow Mouse nibbles warily on a still green leaf, Mole scurries
through her underground realm, and far in the distance Wolf's footfall crunches on fragile ice.

Owl's ears are not symmetrical, one being higher than the other, and sound is channeled
separately into each ear by a ruff of fine feathers. Owl hears in perfect stereo, allowing
her to pinpoint the trembling rodent far below. She swoops noiselessly, giving Mouse no
intimation of her fate, hovers to focus on the sound of Mouse's tine bites - the pounces and
takes her to her aerie, clutched in razor harp talons. Owl swallows her warm, furry meal whole.

The next day Owle rests a feather statue, but inside her powerful gizzard regurgitates as a
neat compact ball.

If Owl on strong majestic wings has flown into your world she knows that the time has
come for you to seek that which is hidden. Arcane knowledge deep within the ageless
traditions of white magic will now reveal itself if you quiet your mind and take the time to
explore the mysteries beyond with a guide or those who have the same mystical goals. Like
Owl you will absorb the benign and nourishing, and discard that which is destructive. The
web connecting the world and the universe to planes we cannot even see will become
clear, and imbue your life with intense meaning.

On a material level, Owl counsels that you look far beyond the surveyed actions of others. If you
trust to your own intuitions and perceptions others will be unable to deceive you, their hidden
agendas will be as clear as a flower in sunlight and Owl's wisdom will be yours.

Libraries are on this row
INDEX Page 1
(Divination & Dreams, Guides & Spirit Helpers)
INDEX Page 2
INDEX Page 3
(Main Section, Medicine Wheel, Native Languages & Nations, Symbology)
INDEX Page 4
(Myth & Lore)
INDEX Page 5
(Sacred Feminine & Masculine, Stones & Minerals)
INDEX Page 6
(Spiritual Development)
INDEX Page 7
(Totem Animals)
INDEX Page 8
(Tools & Crafts. Copyrights)

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