For a long time, the knock-on birds were that they were stupid. The truth is, they are geniuses! That’s why different cultures have a variety of metaphors for birds. Doves, for instance, are a symbol of peace, love, luck, prosperity, fidelity, and new beginnings, thus being the bird of choice to be released during weddings. In this article let’s fly through the clouds and try as much as we can to understand the different bird symbolism.
Birds are animals hardwired for flight. Though some of them, like penguins, have lost the capability to fly, several kinds are able to run, jump, swim, and dive. Every inch of a bird’s physical make-up is fashioned to induce lift; hence airplane wings are designed after bird wings. Known to be the closest relative of the dinosaurs that lived in the Jurassic period around 160 million years ago, the largest of these winged creatures is the ostrich (read more about the ostrich symbolism), which can grow to a towering nine feet; while the smallest is the long bee hummingbird which is cute at only two inches.
Birds have a one-of-a-kind digestive system that allows them to eat even during flight, and being true to the fact that they rule the skies, they lay eggs and leave them in nests so they can get rid of excess baggage as they fly.
Due to the fact that birds are able to fly, a dream of humankind since its beginning, they have a powerful meaning, just like the dragonfly meaning. Needless to say, birds are some of most of Mother Nature’s prettiest and most colorful creations.
What do birds symbolize?
Birds have been around humans since, like, forever. Remember the bird that brought the branch to Noah’s Ark? Birds were depicted on cave walls and were valuable symbols for ancient civilizations such as Egypt, Rome, and Greece.
Numerous bird types were used to represent critical historical events in these cultures. Countless theories are connected to a variety of bird species as well.
Birds reflect a strong symbolism. They encourage us to aim high and realize our goals despite the challenges we might face as we chase those dreams.
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They can also be a motivation to deepen one’s spirituality even more. Akin to the Hindu belief of dogs as messengers from the underworld, birds are recognized as ambassadors from the spiritual world. Birds embody peace, conversion, freedom, and strength. Angels, when they appear to be making a connection with us, are usually in the form of birds. And in rare encounters with angels, people would describe them as sporting birds’ wings.
Whenever a deceased loved one wants to send us a message, they do it not through Twitter, but in the form of birds popping up in our lives or at times, even just representations of birds we keep seeing. Their sudden presence in our lives depicts inspiration to act towards something that we really love.
All we need is to open our eyes and our hearts for us to receive these messages that they are trying to send us. Tidings of support from our guardian angels are sent in a form of a bird appearing in our lives, often in unusual circumstances that bring such powerful messages.
Birds help us get in contact with our spirituality and develop it further.
It’s no laughing matter that though some birds may represent good omens, some, unfortunately, do not. It is important to know what kind of bird it is that you saw before you lose your head from worrying for you to interpret their sightings accurately.
List of birds and what they symbolize
Regarded as one of literature’s most celebrated symbols, the albatross’s affinity with the sea has made them a representation of mild and favorable weather. Sailors and sea dwellers of the past found its presence highly useful at a time when apps such as Accuweather had yet to exist. Since harming or killing them was considered to be a foolproof way of bringing bad luck to any voyage, seafarers of the past steered clear of these majestic birds, trusting that by doing so, the albatross would quiet the seas and guide them as they sail home. See also our post about the albatross symbolism.
The Bald Eagle is generally thought to be a symbol of animals that represent strength, courage, leadership, and prestige. Known to many as the “King of Birds,” they are believed to be the symbol of the sun and were perceived to have the ability to carry messages between the gods and mankind by the Native Americans.
Traditional Native American headdresses contain eagle feathers, which is a symbol used to epitomize the Thunder God and is also a symbol of success in hunting and triumph in war. Eagles mate for life, thus making them a symbol of loyalty. Read also our post: eagle symbolism.
A medieval book called a Bestiary had metaphorical definitions of real and fabled animals including the blackbird. This book called the Aberdeen Bestiary, which was written in the 12th Century, states that the Blackbird typifies those who are tempted by carnal pleasures, while a blackbird adorned with white feathers is a symbol of purity.
In early Christian books, they were revered as a representation of evil, thus the Devil appeared to St. Benedict in the form of a Blackbird.
People who are on a spiritual path might see in the Blackbird a significant meaning. Blackbirds remind us that we should trust that each day and choice is fruitful and provides us with a lot of insight into the mysteries surrounding our existence along with the paths that we choose in life.
The bluebird meaning embodies happiness and modesty. It is also said that the bluebird is one of the many forms that angels and other spirit guides may take when they descend to the earth. They are always good omens. When a bluebird appears, expect satisfaction and bliss to come your way as prosperity is due for a visit. It is an appeal to enjoy life and its wonders and to change the way you look at things, allowing you to appreciate every moment as well as our freedom that we often overlook.
The blue jay meaning represents strength, communication, clarity, or the need to stand up for yourself. It is also is a bird symbol of intelligence and curiosity. It means that blue jay people are very intelligent and determined. This bird may also symbolize protection and fearlessness. If blue jay appears in your life, you will feel safe and protected.
Best known for their singing ability, canaries are cheerful and pleasant birds that spread joy, happiness, and comfort. While a flying canary could be an indication of freedom for most of us, it could also be a sign of the spread of unwanted information or gossip. Territorial and best housed in solitary, these birds of often vibrant yellow color symbolize selflessness and sexual ecstasy and were once used in coal mines to warn workers of noxious fumes. Read more about the Canary symbolism here.
Cardinals are usually found in North and South America. Bright red cardinals can be easily recognized and are often seen hopping around backyards and bird feeders. Their diet consists of insects, seeds, grain, fruit, and sap. They rarely migrate and they are more comfortable foraging in places where the climate is warm.
Male cardinals sport the bright red feathers for which their species is popular, while the females don a gorgeous tan or grey tuft. The crimson color of the boys spells the difference in their mating success. The brighter it is, the better chances for the male to land a mate.
Cardinals can be identified as karaoke kings since they sing a variety of different melodies. They are somewhat social, joining flocks that include birds of other species, and during the mating season, they feed their females as they incubate their eggs. Males are known to be aggressive when it comes to territory, and at times, they attack other males who trespass. This impulse leads cardinals to fly into glass windows, when they attack an invading bird, just to find out that it was just their own reflection.
Moving on, most people interpret a cardinal’s presence as a departed loved one visiting you. They show up in times that we need them or miss them the most. They appear in times when there is a celebration, as well as times of deep sorrow to remind us that they will always be with us.
The cardinal is related to the phoenix, which in itself has a long list of myths and tales. The Egyptian version has this bright red bird living in the deserts of Arabia that can change to numerous forms. For the Greeks, they believed that when a phoenix, otherwise known as a cardinal, sings, the sun itself would stop just to listen. It can be interpreted as a way of asking us to stop and listen to the melody and how it affects us; that we should allow it to inspire and reinvigorate us, so that we may find the strength to push forward even in the darkest moments of our lives.
Cardinals remind us to be clear with our intentions when dealing with the people in our life. They tell us that setting a clear and intelligent goal will make their realization effortless.
It may also be asking you to be cautious of your thoughts, to be certain that you are aware of the consequences of your actions, and to correct them when you’ve done wrong.
Cardinals can also be telling you to start putting yourself first ahead of others. That sometimes it is also important to take care of yourself to make it much easier for you to lend a hand to others.
It might also mean that the timing is now perfect to start an endeavor that you have been considering. Like starting a family, putting up your own business, or trying out that new diet fad. Once you see a Cardinal, then you have the blessing to just go for it.
Christianity wise, the cardinal is symbolic of the living blood of Christ. Both cardinals and blood have long been symbols of endurance and spirit, and with Christianity in the foreground, that kind of endurance is everlasting. Customarily, the cardinal is a symbol of life, hope, and renewal. These symbols associate the cardinal with faith, and they come to remind us that though things might not be going the way we hope them to be, there is always hope.
An enchanting creature that packs a sweet tweet as well as a loving and warm behavior, the chickadee is a remarkable spirit animal that offers countless amazing symbolism. Known to smoothly descend into our lives in high spirits, this playful and charming little bird is a firm reminder that great things do come in small packages. Read more about the chickadee symbolism.
The condor is among the biggest birds in the world. It stands for endurance, life, death, as well as visions. The condor’s prowess in flight and observation, along with the courage it exudes due to its innate strengths, turns it into the perfect symbol for freedom. It is the freedom of knowing that despite the harshness of life around you, you have what it takes to break free and do what you think is best. Also check our comparison: condor vs vulture or read more about the condor symbolism.
The cormorant is a symbol of labor, courage, and resourcefulness. In order to acquire their food, cormorants need to put a great effort by diving underwater to search for the food that they habitually eat. They know what they want and are willing to work hard to achieve their goal. To dive deep into the water also symbolizes courage for it takes a lot of strength to face unfamiliar territories. In another post, we compared the Anhinga Vs Cormorant.
The Crane is considered to be a symbol of maternal love and happiness. Several cultures consider the crane to be a symbol of physical connection and they believe cranes to be messengers of the gods. The Greeks and Romans regarded the crane as a symbol of spring and light and the bird was considered sacred by Apollo.
Some parts of Africa (read here about the top birds of prey in Africa) see the crane as a symbol of wisdom, whereas the Japanese consider cranes as carriers of luck, longevity, and fidelity. Native American men perform the crane dance dressed in feathers from this bird in the hope of impressing a potential wife. We also compared it to the stork: stork vs crane.
Dark, lugubrious, and mysterious, in western culture the crow symbolism is often associated with nefarious and infernal messages. Some say the crow symbolism stands for a bird of death. Used to feed on carcasses, it directly recalls the image of death and lifeless bodies.
The Crow is generally thought to be a symbol of bad luck and ill fortune, while the Native Americans believe that the crow’s black feather is an indication of death to the enemy. They are defined as black birds having a unique and rough call and they are linked to a group of birds known as ‘passerines’ or perching birds.
Native Americans believe that crows represent spiritual law and their black feathers are a symbol of death or a bad omen to their enemies. Although the Greek God Apollo held them as sacred, other cultures, particularly the Aborigines, believed that this bird is nothing but bad news even if followers of Japanese Shintoism personify them as God’s messengers.
The dove epitomizes peace, maternity, love, and purity. Dove symbolism can also be heralding an end of a problematic cycle in your life, thereby announcing a time of new worlds opening up to you. In other words, there are possibilities of a new romance, new friendships, and new beginnings on the horizon for you. See more questions about the mourning dove answered or the mourning dove symbolism here.
Doves are often recognized as a symbol of peace. Christians consider them as the symbol of the Holy Spirit, representing the soul. Doves are also a symbol of love and fidelity, thus the release of a pair during weddings. Doves reflect innocence, gentleness, and affection, while in art as well as in the Bible, they are the manifestations of the Holy Ghost.
Red doves, though extremely rare, stand for Christ’s redemption of mankind through His blood, while a speckled Dove signifies the diversity of the prophets. They can also be depicted as the act of martyrdom in Christianity, while in Greek mythology it symbolizes Athena, the goddess of wisdom, courage, inspiration, civilization, law, and justice.
Ducks are generally thought to be a symbol of resourcefulness. Like triathlon athletes, they possess the ability to walk, swim, fly, and ‘duck’ under the water to feed or hide from predators. In both the Chinese and Japanese cultures, they represent happiness and fidelity and when hanging out with a drake, it is a sign of happiness and beauty. The duck symbolism combines the sea and the sky as agreed in Native American mythology.
The eagle is one of the most ancient symbols of humanity. The eagle symbols healing, enlightenment, freedom, and man’s connection with God. When this graceful hunter comes into your life, it’s time to look inward with a careful eye. Allow your heart to guide you, and opportunities you never dreamed were possible will present themselves when you least expect it.
An egret swoops into our lives to indicate the need to slow down, nurture each of our gifts, and learn how to embrace our own flaws and uniqueness. While it may not sound much at first, once you’ve learned to completely love and trust yourself, it will be a lot easier to reach out and spread the egret’s message in both wet and dry land. Read more about the egret symbolism.
The falcon is a manifestation of power, agility, and gracefulness. The falcon symbolism, after all, speaks about victory, success, and rising above challenging situations; and it is similar to the worm animal spirit. At its core, the falcon meaning signifies wisdom, vision, and protection. Throughout history, culture, and myth, Falcons symbolize superiority, spirit, light, freedom, and aspiration.
Finches symbolize joy and happiness – they are a mark of celebrations. They can also be seen as a symbol of hope, wisdom, the elevation of your standards, and the enlightenment of your soul. If you see a finch flying around your house, believe that peace, freedom, and positive changes are just around the corner.
The flamingo personifies romance, generosity, and emotional healing. Before they are symbols of balance, the flamingo is also a symbol of community. It symbolizes the importance of expressing emotions freely. The Flamingo meaning also symbolizes balance, being open towards others, and having an open heart.
This bird of black and vibrant yellow plumage, seen at times sporting a patch of red feathers atop its head, is believed to bring luck and recovery to the sick. They are known to be a symbol of sacrifice, our soul, death, and resurrection, well-recognized as the four essential concepts of the bible. Generally considered as positive spirits that embody good omens, goldfinches symbolize beauty, love, family, health, and harmony, all of which are known to be life’s greatest traits. Read more about the goldfinch meaning.
The goose symbolizes travel, loyalty, sociability, and fresh starts. But also Goose Spirit often symbolizes the warrior spirit, protection, and bravery. Goose symbolism also prompts you to look deeply into your heart to ascertain that the choice is yours.
The hawk symbolism stands for power, strength, spirituality, and broad perspectives. The ability to use intuition and higher (bird) vision in order to complete tasks or make important decisions. The creature represents perspective, patience, and insight.
The heron is a symbol of attaining wisdom, balance, patience, authority, and assertiveness. In many cultures, it is considered wrong to shoot a heron, which brings you bad luck. Many people believe that dreaming about herons brings back their lost possession. The heron is among the animals that tell us to stop, look, and listen before taking action.
A Hummingbird is broadly assumed to be a symbol of joy and happiness due to its appearance. Native Americans consider them as a symbol of beauty and harmony. The Mayan god Quetzalcoatl adorned herself with the feathers of a hummingbird as they were believed to bear magical powers.
Seeing a hummingbird means that we can make changes in our lives when needed, the hummingbird can change direction, fly backward, meaning it can get accustomed to life changes. And the bird still hums, flies, dances, and enjoys its life despite the hard work and all the locomotion. So we can demolish all we have built around our hearts, sights, or experiences. Explore, see, and enjoy life with its pro and cons, surprises, sweetness, and miracles. Read more in our post: hummingbird symbolism.
The ibis was seen as a sacred creature in ancient Egypt, with many symbolic meanings related to death and resurrection. It is also associated with wisdom from its ability to speak human languages but also animal language for hunting purposes- something which not even modern man can do! For more details check our post: ibis symbolism.
The Common Kingfisher symbolizes luck because they can find hidden treasure on riverbeds. They also represent wisdom through their ability to dive deep into the water with conviction and determination in search of food–even though there’s no guarantee that they’ll come back up again with any prize at all!
Larks are symbols of joy and optimism. The lark is often seen in folklore as a messenger that brings good tidings, singing the song of hope. Larks bring messages to people who have lost their way, bringing them back into balance with life’s natural rhythms. Check out more about the lark symbolism here.
Though there could be many negative and positive traits, superstitions, and beliefs surrounding magpie the bird, at the end of the day, there is one thing that is quite clear. Magpie is a beautiful bird both in looks and in intelligence. While there could be some beliefs and superstitions that may have been passed to us over generations, we need to take care of this beautiful bird and ensure that it is not persecuted because of some negative beliefs and thought processes. Read more about the magpie symbolism.
By singing a charming song that soothes the soul and provides peace of mind, the mockingbird holds a myriad of symbolism that makes them a wonderful spirit animal to have in life. Although their protective nature would make them extremely aggressive towards other creatures at times, the divine messages that they bring could perhaps be the reason why, as they say, “it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.” Read more about the mockingbird symbolism.
The Mourning Dove symbolism varies depending on which culture you look at. For some, mourning dove meaning has to do with resurrection and hope- for others, it’s about the beauty of nature or peace. Throughout history, these beautiful birds have been a source of inspiration and joy as well as symbolic mourning. They’re mentioned in literature and depicted by artists all over the world! Read more about the mourning dove symbolism.
The nightingale is a beautiful and fragile bird that sings with an incredible voice. It is often seen as a symbol of peace and tranquility, but it is also symbolic of the human spirit. The nightingale symbolism has also been used as a way to represent love, mysteriousness, and secrecy. If you’re someone who is the creative type, it was often believed that seeing a nightingale meant that something positive was coming your way regarding your craft-whether it was art, poetry, music, etc. At one point, there was a belief that consuming the heart of one of these birds meant you would be blessed with many talents.
Perhaps because of the symbolic meaning that an ostrich sticks its head in the sand at times of hardships and difficulties, many of us view this relatively large bird to represent deception, secrecy, and denial. Although the ostrich symbol and animal totem can be quite complex and contradict to the bird’s traits and nature, this often misunderstood creature would rush into our presence to make it known that there is no way for things to ever go bad if you quit hiding your face in the ground. Read more about the ostrich symbolism.
These nocturnal birds are thought to be symbols of wisdom and knowledge, thus the coining of the term “Wise Old Owl.” Its cry is said to signal forthcoming death or misfortune. The Celts nicknamed them the “Night Hag” and were linked to dead bodies. The Jews are represented by owls since they proved that they prefer dwelling in the dark when they rejected Jesus. Owls were associated with black magic in Africa, as their heads were used in concocting spells.
Owls live within the darkness, which includes magic, mystery, and ancient knowledge. The Owl meaning and spirit teach you how to harness the strength needed to open your eyes and look into the shadows. Delve deeply into Owl symbolism and meaning to find out how this animal spirit guide can illuminate, assist, and educate you. The mythology relates the owl to this wisdom and femininity.
Parakeets hold significant meaning throughout histories, such as in Native American culture, Hinduism, and the UK.
The parakeet symbolism, such as true love and honest communication. They are a symbol of integrity and commitment.
The Parakeet spirit animal is a powerful energy that can help you in times of need. This spirit guide can fly into your life, guide you towards your divine route, and help you find your empowerment.
The parrot exemplifies… wait for it, communication and talkativeness. You also need to pay attention to the signs and omens around you. Everything is possible right now. Therefore, it’s the perfect time to go after the dreams you once thought were out of reach. Read more about the parrot symbolism here.
The peacock meaning illustrates grace, compassion, awakening, and nobility. The peacock spirit animal is the epitome of beauty. This graceful power animal offers lessons about self-love, honor, integrity and the importance of facing life’s challenges as well as the unknown with courage and confidence. When the peacock struts gracefully into your life you may be entering a time of rebirth.
A peacock is a male peafowl and is thought to be a symbol of the sun. It is perceived that its round tail symbolizes heaven and the markings that seem like eyes on the tail are the stars. In Buddhism, the eyes on the peacock’s tail are a sign of watchfulness.
Peacocks are often related to the symbol of vanity as they like to show off their vibrantly colored tails to impress their females and us humans too. There’s also a strong meaning to the peacocks’ feathers.
Pelicans are fascinating creatures. They have a long and rich history, dating back to ancient times when they were worshiped as gods in Ancient Egypt. In more recent times, pelicans became symbols of charity, self-sacrifice, and vigilance because of their unique ability to plunge into the water without hesitation to save another bird from drowning.
In modern times pelicans became symbols of charity, self-sacrifice, and vigilance because they are known for their unique ability to rescue other birds who have been stranded in the water. The most famous example of this is when a pelican was found to have rescued 20 other birds from being stranded on an island in Louisiana, despite its own injuries and weakness; it had attempted to save them for at least three days before finally succeeding. Read more about the pelican symbolism in our post or in our comparison with the stork: Stork vs Pelican.
Penguins symbolize loyalty and unity. Being strong believers of the power of unity, they stick with each other through every storm. They are charming, and friendly which makes them loved by all. Penguins are a symbol of dedication towards the family and the ability to adapt to the most unfavorable conditions in the world and life. In another post, we compared them to the ever-cute puffins: puffin vs penguin.
As a cousin of the peacock, which they are also known to flex their jaw-dropping plumage to land a mate, the pheasant symbolism represents active energy that is often expressed and attributed to heat, the male energy, as well as vibrant lights, colors, and sounds. By putting on display their flamboyant, eye-catching colors, male pheasants remind us of the vastness of nature’s diversity and creativity. If you want to read more about pheasants, we compared them in our post: Quail vs Pheasant.
The Phoenix is a legendary Arabian bird that is said to repeatedly burn itself to death and rise from the ashes as a new phoenix, symbolizing life, death, and re-birth. Tradition says that only one phoenix can live at a time so it renews itself every 500 years.
Legend tells that the phoenix will never die because it was the only animal that did not eat the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. In ancient Egypt, the phoenix was a symbol of sunrise and sunset. It is also known as a symbol of royalty, making it a favorite of kings to decorate their robes, armor, and shields.
The phoenix is believed to symbolize the death and resurrection of Christ which is celebrated each year at Easter. Read more about the phoenix symbolism.
Pigeons are often seen as dirty, disgusting creatures that carry diseases and steal food. They are also known to be the carrier of messages across long distances. Throughout history, pigeons have represented peace, war, death, and despair – all because of one symbol: the homing pigeon. The pigeon symbolism stands for friendship, purity, and peace. It is said that kings in ancient times or presidents would offer as gift pairs of pigeons to other countries they visit. In fact, it was King Leopold who introduced pigeon racing into England by giving some breeds away as gifts.
The raven signifies magic, the dark side of your personality, and transformation. The raven symbolism may be there to help you on your journey, provide insight, knowledge, and guidance. There is also an element of reflection with raven meaning. Consequently, this bird is reminding you that the people around you are reflecting at you the things you most have to learn about yourself.
The robin is known to attack anything that threatens the safety of its family. It can be a dark and calculating animal when it comes to the protection of its flock. That being said, the robin is an excellent parent, and with a spirit animal of a robin, you more than likely are as well. In biblical essence, the robin was said to have tried to pluck the thorns from the crown of thorns that Jesus was made to wear. The robin failed and managed only to tear his own breast in the effort, leaving it stained crimson. See also our post about the robin symbolism.
Because of the events leading to Jesus’ death, Christianity has always given the rooster a negative connotation/symbolism. As the signal of one of the apostles’ final betrayal of Christ, the only bird in the Chinese Zodiac calendar has become a symbol of our vigilance against evil. Originally referred to as a cock or cockerel until a rude connotation sprung, the vibrancy and diversity of its plumage is a known spiritual encouragement that tells us about the benefits of fanning out with brilliance. It reminds us that by showing the world our personality, traits, and talents, we encourage others to be more confident and brave.
Seagulls are known to stay loyal to a single mate for life which makes them an ideal symbol of bonds, warmth, and devotion. Their affinity to coastlines makes it seem that they are unrestrained and unrestricted, symbolizing freedom, optimism, and hope. Read more about the seagull symbolism here.
The sparrow is small yet strong. It symbolizes the fact that you don’t have to be large in order for your voice and actions to make a difference; when they come together, it’s even stronger! The sparrow is a bird known for its intelligence. It can be seen as small yet strong, with the ability to make changes from afar even if it doesn’t look like much at first glance; when all these little birds come together in one place they are truly powerful! Read more about the sparrow meaning here.
The starling symbolism as well as the starling spirit animal, starlings imbue in us the significance of family and community and of learning how to co-exist with the people around us without creating any sort of tension. The appearance of starlings in your life may indicate that you need to further understand the pecking order within family relationships and that doing so would help promote peace and unity. But the starling’s aggressive nature also tells us that breaking away from people, even family members, especially if they have proven to be highly toxic and hurtful is not at all bad. Starlings awaken in us to prioritize family relationships without forgetting to look out for ourselves. Often Grackles are seen similar to Starlings, read here the differences: Grackle vs Starling.
Storks have been connected with life. Who hasn’t heard the old adage about the stork delivering babies to doorsteps of excited new parents? Storks are considered lucky in most cultures. Cranes, a bird sometimes mistaken for a stork, are also associated with long life in Asia. Legend has it that if you fold 1000 paper storks your wish would come true. Today, origami cranes are given as a sign of hope for those who seek healing.
We compared the stork to a pelican in our post: stork vs pelican.
Swallows are among the most common species of birds seen worldwide. The Swallow symbolism stands for are easy-going, lovable, and cheerful animals. Having such traits, also means that if a person has a swallow as its spirit animal, he or she is likely to be happy, peaceful, cheerful, and easy-going as well. People who are likened to a swallow are sociable. They like to spend time with their friends and family.
The swan symbolizes beauty, love, grace, healing, and angels. The swan’s symbolism is very powerful. It does not only show us beauty, it reminds us where beauty really comes from. As per the swan, beauty is not a matter of science or logic. Instead, it is a matter of intuition and awareness.
The Swan is commonly perceived to be a symbol of solitude. Many cultures believe that they are the bird of life since they combine the elements of air and water. In Chinese mythology, the swan meaning is a symbol of yang and is revered as a solar bird.
Christians believe the swan to be a symbol of grace and purity, thus symbolizing the Virgin Mary. Ancient Romans consider them as a symbol of a happy death, while Celtics regard their songs as magical.
The toucan symbol calls you to find your inner voice and put it into articulate language that your community can hear. Never shy away from speaking up for yourself and expressing yourself authentically. If the toucan is your spirit animal guide, you’ll find no difficulty accessing your strong command of language and ways to express yourself. Harness the spirit of the toucan to communicate on a spiritual level with your social circle! Read more about the toucan symbolism.
Stuffed with a richness of meanings and symbols from different cultures. This bird is not just as superficial as something we serve to guests and families on occasion to show hospitality. The turkey symbolism has a far deeper meaning that can only be fully understood by further reading about different civilizations and diving deeper into your understanding of its meaning for you, especially if you feel that the turkey is your spirit animal. Read more about the turkey symbolism here.
The vulture meaning describes one of the most powerful and intriguing birds in the world. It’s also among the most misunderstood and unloved ones! However, if you see vultures, run! Not only are they carnivores, but they also mean that your character will be tested in the not-so-distant future. The vulture symbolism indicates a period of bad luck and misfortune. On the other hand, it comes into your life to give you inspiration. There are many opportunities around.
Numerous cultures and traditions give prominence to woodpeckers over their unique inborn habit of tree jabbing. This strange yet interesting practice is deemed as both alluring and mysterious by our ancestors, associating the pounding rhythm with energy and life. Woodpeckers are seen to be symbols of our life’s rhythm or flow and how it affects our principles, relationships, and overall existence (read on about the woodpecker symbolism here).
Apart from the common distinction as magical creatures, here are the various forms that several cultures view as woodpeckers.
Woodpeckers were perceived to be fortune tellers in ancient Europe, relaying their messages about change, whether good or bad, through their tapping.
Their ability to craft intricate nests and lay up to 6 eggs at a time has led the Babylonians to see them as extraordinary birds of fertility and abundance.
Folk traditions associate woodpeckers to the element of fire not only for being such energetic birds but perhaps also on the account of the red strip of feathers seen atop the heads of most of their species.
Commonly seen as magical creatures, woodpeckers are frequently identified with indigenous and primitive symbolism that weaves the capacity to communicate with entities from a realm that our eyes nor our minds can see.
The Wren is also an iconic symbol of transformation. Its small size belies its ability to inspire and motivate people into making their dreams come true, with just one day in the nest-building process! The job requires patience but when you hear this bird sing its beautiful song for hours on end while looking out over your city at night? Read more about the wren symbolism.
Redbirds come to represent your life’s dominant quality built-in in your soul. It personifies facets of wealth, energy, enthusiasm, leadership, vigor, and intelligence. Red is often perceived as a sign of good luck, thus the torrent of the red color during celebrations particularly in the Chinese Lunar New Year holidays. On the other hand, it may also imply lust, blood, risks, and warnings.
You should sense that red birds are your connection to the spirit realm and that they can be utilized to acquire some curated hints. It is a sign that you should be definite or open about your plans when you see a red bird. No hidden agendas.
It can also be an indication that your beliefs and desires will finally be taken seriously. They can be a sign of confidence and knowing yourself better, of listening to your own voice. They may embody grace, mercy, and loyalty.
Red birds personify gratitude and appreciating and trusting one another.
If a red bird visits you in your dream, it may signify that you should be proud of who you are as a person and to cut yourself off from things that hurt you, and just focus on coming out as a better version of yourself. It may mean that a person or a task is just around the corner waiting for you.
Birds as spirit animals
Having a bird spirit animal looking after you is the biggest honor of all. These creatures are close to heaven, and their symbolism has significant effects on our lives by connecting us with spirits above or below.
Birds can fly high above life’s problems, and see things more clearly than others around you might be able to. Your connection with your power animal is strong enough for them to come through physical mediums such as feathers or rocks too. Having a spirit guide from this bestiary gives you some magical powers which will help transform your luck in all areas of life, letting nothing hold back your newfound potential.
Birds can also represent the power of transformation, which is important to achieve positive things in your life. After all, you cannot remain stagnant if you want to live an ideal lifestyle. If a bird symbolizes change for you then it may be time to make some alterations in order to improve your quality of life or personal relationships! You will not regret making these changes either after they are done because having spirit guides by your side increases motivation and self-assurance tenfold.
Having this animal guide with you is essential too when connecting with other spirits on another plane. They have superior senses beyond what humans are capable of, so communicate through whatever means necessary whether that’s speaking telepathically or tuning into feelings more accurately than others are able to.
Birds as totem animals
If you feel like a bird is your totem animal, it’s likely that you see the world from an aerial point of view. Your perspective on life is very different from those around you and this gives you unique insight into problems others might not be able to solve themselves. You don’t need advice or guidance because your abilities are strong enough for nearly anything; with guidance from your spirit guide, there isn’t much you can fail at in life!
You may also find yourself more shy than usual when meeting new people – allowing birds such as chickens (read more about the chicken symbolism) and sparrows to represent who you are will help turn things around so they become social butterflies too. The trick is letting others in your life understand that the way you view things is different.
For people with bird spirit animals, this animal represents a connection to nature and its many properties which are often hidden from us when we live in big cities. Birds can also represent freedom of thought because they don’t need much more than wing-power for travel; their symbolism shows how connected you feel to yourself too!
So if you feel like a bird is your spirit animal or totem, use this to aid personal growth and make the most of life because these animals are always watching out for those who need it.
People throughout history use bird totems symbolically, but they are most commonly associated with Native American tribes. They created totem poles as a reminder for them to learn self-awareness and insight into the spirit world. There are many other totems that come to the forefront of people’s minds, but this article discusses some of the most common along with their spirit animal symbolism.
Birds as power animals
Having a bird as your power animal means you have the potential to be the best version of yourself possible. These animals are able to soothe fears and worries, encouraging those around them with their symbolism.
Birds can also represent freedom from fear because they do not tend to get caught up on anything – especially small problems that most people would let bog them down for days! They will remind you of this too, by acting positively whenever negativity rears its ugly head out in public or at home.
Take some time today to connect with spirit guides through meditation if necessary; birds may then speak through dreams which help give guidance even more accurately than before! Having these symbols near makes it easier for an individual’s intuition to become stronger
Having birds as power animals means you have strong wings on all levels of life – nothing will hold back your success or growth anymore unless it is what you truly want at heart. With guidance from someone who has already been through similar struggles, there isn’t anything that could possibly stop progress from moving forward into new horizons.
When you wake up in the morning, your mind is already thinking about what new opportunities life could bring and nothing can stop it. Birds as power animals will help you take control of your destiny and become more involved with community projects that make a difference to those around you; helping others find their bird spirit animal too! Your drive for success has no bounds – especially when paired with determination from your totem guide who loves seeing people achieve their goals each day!
If one or many birds show up as physical mediums such as feathers or rocks, this suggests they are trying to tell us something important about our current situation which we must pay attention to if we want things to change for the better. However safe might seem on paper, sometimes risks are necessary for personal growth so it is important to take each day as it comes.
With these animals by your side, the only thing you have left to worry about is how well this will all turn out in the end! After all, why not try something new when there isn’t anything holding you back? A bird as a spirit animal or totem can help us realize our potential and show more people what we’re made of on any given day. If they become really involved with helping those around them connect with their own power totems through dreams and meditation, birds may also appear physically such as feathers or rocks near an individual’s home too – suggesting that life has some exciting changes ahead which one must remain open-minded about if they want to become the best version of themselves possible!
Dead bird meaning
A long time ago, our ancestors, lacking Google, turned to nature to understand the events that were happening around them. They believed that natural cycles mirrored human life, thus careful observation of events and animal behavior was their only tool to find connections about our experiences.
These experiences have led some people to question whether or not there is a spiritual connection behind some events, let’s say finding a dead bird, especially when it happens often. Many would jump to the conclusion that it may be a bad omen. Instead of “jumping” to conclusions, read on and take a leap of faith that not all dead birds translate to bad luck.
Running into a dead animal, whatever animal it may be, is never a gracious experience. Even more, we consider dead birds as messengers from God. It wasn’t long ago when death was seen as a form of transition, a process where we get rid of things that don’t spark joy anymore (thank you, Marie Kondo), to make room for new stuff. It is only recently that people perceive death with negativity. But from a spiritual point of view, it is actually considered a sign of transformation and eventually, rebirth.
According to these beliefs, the type of bird and where you find it give various clues as to what message it is you need to die from to make way for a new beginning. Here’s a list:
Dead black bird
White birds are recognized around the world as a symbol of purity and peace. So a dead white bird might probably indicate conflict or chaos that is about to take place in your life. The veiled message really is to just stay true to your abilities and have the confidence that no matter what hits you, it will always turn out fine.
Dead birds do not necessarily mean something bad is going to happen; it just means that a chapter in your life is about to end and instead of feeling bad and sulking, it will be more productive spiritually if we open our hearts and welcome a new beginning.
Black is the color of unconsciousness, of ignorance. Thus, a dead blackbird is an expression of some unresolved tension that needs to be resolved. It may be telling you to let go of something that’s been hindering growth and happiness.
Songbirds are a symbol of communication. That is why it is believed that seeing a dead songbird is an omen that is related to connecting with others. Maybe it’s telling you to keep in touch with someone, or maybe it is asking you to speak up about something that’s been bothering you. In some countries, they are even eating songbirds (I’ve tried them but it’s definitely not recommended)
Dead hummingbirds meaning
Hummingbirds represent joy and freedom. Encountering them at such a stressful moment might only mean that you are ready for a serious commitment and that you should start appreciating the simple pleasures in life.
Biblical meaning of dead birds
Birds traditionally symbolize a new beginning and as omens of renewal, they would often represent the removal of obstacles or challenges that ultimately reveal something better in our lives.
Beginnings abound from endings suggesting that the pain of loss and sacrifice is required to start anew. Death or loss reminds us that we are about to experience a period of renewal; that a cycle in our lives is coming to a close. Again, the story of Noah and the great flood is a fine example since the events that occurred after is a story of rebirth and forgiveness.
Hence, the Biblical Meaning Of Dead Birds often translates into a hidden message, the kind of information that we receive also depends on where we see that bird’s carcass. A dead bird on your doorstep or yard may indicate that change is hurtling towards you and that you should be ready to receive it.
Dead bird in the house
A bird dropping dead after hitting your window spiritually symbolizes that you are facing a speed bump that must be removed and that the change you have been longing for will require sacrifice (you might have heard of the superstition: “A Bird Flew Into My Window, Is Death Knocking At My Door“)
The meaning of a dead bird found inside your house is a sign that a reformation process should take place within you. Since our homes represent our inner realms, we are called to let go of what is no longer favorable for us to find inner peace.
Dead birds fall out of the sky
This term is often quoted and is thought to be mentioned in the bible. However, it’s not true; two prophets, Hosea and Zephaniah, in the Old Testament speak of birds and fish being swept away or consumed. Ezekiel 14:12-21 says that when a nation gets to a certain level of sinfulness, God starts killing the animals (Jer 12:4). But that’s about it, still, the idea has found its echo in modern culture – as seen in the video below.
Birds that symbolize death
One of my favorite movies is the Brandon Lee film entitled The Crow. It tells the story of Eric, a musician that was brutally murdered along with his fiancé on the night before their wedding. On the anniversary of their death, Eric rises from the grave and adopts the gothic mantle of the Crow, believed to be a messenger between the world of the dead and the living.
Crows, ravens, blackbirds, owls, and phoenixes might all represent death, but they can also exemplify the spirit world, the afterlife, spirituality, or the death of a loved one.
Birds of death: crows and black birds
Blackbirds often take the blame for negativity. Possibly for the sole reason that humans can’t see in the dark, they attribute all kinds of bad qualities to dark things. They are symbols of the unknown, the mystical, and the spirit realm. Blackbirds or also crows may be indications of death but they are also carriers of divine messages.
In myth and folklore, crows are often said to be able to cross between our world and the afterlife delivering messages. Several cultures believe that crows possess a special connection with spirits. Crows are extremely clever and resourceful and are even known to invent and use tools. In many stories and tales, crows often play the role of a naughty deceiver.
Though they are often associated with mystery and death, ravens also personify intelligence, knowledge, wisdom, and harmony with the spirit world. Sure, they prowl on the meat of other birds, sometimes birds that are even bigger than them; but they don’t always spew a dark image. They are frequently identified with the dead, seen as guides for errant spirits, and an over-seer of life and death.
Owls paint an image of wisdom, knowledge, and truth. Those big round yellow eyes make them look all-knowing and their extraordinary ability to see well in the dark is just fitting since they are considered nocturnal creatures. In some cultures, they are revered as spirit guides and representatives of the spirit world.
What do Native American birds symbolize
Native Americans have an extremely diverse view of birds. Native American bird symbols vary in meaning from one tribe to another and across the various cultural groups of North America.
They were devotedly spiritual people and they disclosed their history, thoughts, and ideas from one generation to the next through symbols and signs, often with the use of different animals. Native American symbols are graphic depictions of heavenly bodies, natural experiences, and animal patterns.
Native American bird and animal symbols and totems are perceived to embody the physical form of a spirit helper and guide. Bird symbols are revered by the Native Americans. Their ability to soar above the clouds, near the heavens and their perception of freedom inspired plenty. The tons of birds of North America are highlighted as bird symbols, most of them bearing different meanings to different tribes.
However, because of their ability to take flight, they are believed to be harbingers of messages and symbols of change. They are seen as a symbol of graceful freedom and their feathers, with a plethora of shades and colors, have numerous spiritual and ritual benefits.
Turkeys and Native Americans
The Navajo tribe, one of the largest of American Indians, tells the story of the time when a great flood came and all living creatures were trying to save themselves by climbing the stalk of a bamboo plant, while a wild turkey stayed on the lowest branch allowing his tail feathers to just dip in the water. The story concludes that this is the reason why turkey tails are colorless.
The symbolism of the crow and the eagle
The meaning of the crow symbol signifies wisdom and some tribes believe that crows have the ability to talk and is considered to be one of the wisest of birds. The Native Americans think of the bald and golden eagles to be sacred. For them, eagles epitomize courage, wisdom, and strength and are intended as God’s, thus making it the most revered amongst the bird symbols. (Read about the crow in Mythology here).
The hawk, the owl, and the raven
The hawk is associated with occurrences such as rain, wind, thunder, and lightning and is sometimes referred to as a “thunderer.” They are believed to possess the capability to fly non-stop, watching over the people from the evil spirits of the air.
Owls are believed to be messengers that hail from the deepest and darkest realms and owl symbols convey warnings to people who have broken tribal taboos.
The raven signifies that danger has passed and that a period of abundance and security will follow. The hawk is believed to continuously fly and fight, protecting people from the evil spirits of the air.
Although the thunderbird is more part of myths and folklore, the Native American’s belief that spirits provide them with knowledge and protection didn’t stop them from worshipping this bird.
The Thunderbird symbol is one of the most iconic Indian signs. Its name was derived from the belief that the flapping of its colossal wings causes thunder. They say that when it soars in the air, the wind gets stirred and the sound it churns is viewed by some tribes as an indication of war. The Native Americans also believed that this humongous bird could shoot lightning from its eyes.
Bird symbolism in arts
There are several bird symbols in the arts and folklore. The bird is a popular subject for paintings and sculptures. In art, birds often symbolize freedom or flight because of their ability to fly away from earthly problems. A flock of birds can represent an unruly mob while one bird alone could be symbolic of solitude; we sometimes refer to someone as “a lone bird.” Birds have been used throughout history both as real creatures who appear within stories or tales but also as representations of abstract ideas such as happiness or love. For example, the Roman poet Virgil writes about two turtle doves finding love with each other through their song, which he attributes to Cupid’s power over them:
“These were not wont to warble in their reeds,
Nor with thy roses nor with myrtle bowers:
But now they chant upon the wintry shores
For lo! the bird of Jove is King no more!”– Virgil’s Aeneid Book V.193–197
Birds are often symbolic of creativity and elegance because many birds make unique songs or create beautiful nests. In literature, William Shakespeare used bird symbolism to express feelings about life when he wrote “All the world’s a stage/And all men and women merely players” from his famous play As You Like It. He uses birds as symbols for people who perform on stages throughout their lives by singing different tunes depending on where they are performing. His bird symbolism is also used to express the idea that life consists of many different stages or periods throughout one’s lifetime.
Another bird symbol in literature comes from J.K Rowling, author of Harry Potter. In her epilogue book The Tales Of Beedle The Bard, she uses birds as symbols for Death and immortality because death returns their souls back into the sky where they can live forever among other stars.
Birds are often symbolic of love – not only between people but within nature itself. For example, there is a Native American folklore story about how Tawa (the sun spirit) created two beautiful bird maidens by sprinkling starlight on white seashells he found during his travels across the great ocean after leaving Mother Earth behind following an argument. Mother Earth missed Tawa and became unhappy without his light in the sky, so she made bird-women who embodied starlight to help cheer her up again. The bird maidens sang songs of love for each other which helped bring Tawa back home because he heard their voices when they called out to him; thus, bringing light back into the world once more.
For painters of the Gothic, Early, and High Renaissance eras, birds were part of a bountiful visual symbolism. A preening peacock, a playful finch, a hovering dove, a scheming vulture, a clever crow, a robin, an osprey – all are charmingly decorative to the average viewer.
Birds of every variety are prominently featured in artworks throughout Western art history. Byzantine, Gothic, and Early Renaissance paintings are brimmed with reflective and Christian symbolism regarding birds.
Symbolism can be found in many films, the most talked about and written about in cinema has been the appearance of birds in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 psychological horror Psycho.
We see birds of prey as well as docile birds, which, as the video essay explains, reveal Norman’s inner psychology. For Hitchcock, birds aren’t arbitrary; they are reflections of characters and representations of ideas. There is a war being waged within Norman’s psyche between his two identities: Norman the innocent son and Norman as his homicidal mother.
Symbolism is a great way of adding depth to your visual storytelling and there are countless films that do it right. So, if you want to learn more about how it’s used in filmmaking, pay attention to objects, colors, etc. that show up at least three times throughout the film (the rule of 3s)—chances are if it’s on-screen that frequently, the filmmakers are trying to draw attention to it in order to tell you something.
Birds in Psycho function to both foreshadow events as well as illuminate the depths of its characters. Hitchcock masterfully paints Norman as a man torn between two identities and Marion as an unwitting and ultimately doomed character through the film’s bird motif — an eloquent and ingenious motif that makes an exceptional film even better.
In the movie, The Crow, bird symbolism is used to represent bad luck and death. This bird symbolism appears in the form of a crow because it makes sense with themes within the story itself; however, there are several other birds that could be symbolic such as pigeons (which would make more sense if this film were set in New York City), sparrows or even doves which all have their own meanings when representing symbols for things like spirituality and love.
Birds are often symbolic of freedom in films because birds can fly away from things so easily. For example, bird symbolism is used to represent the protagonist’s ability to escape his life of crime when he decides to go back home after being released from prison at the end of The Shawshank Redemption.
Another bird symbol that appears within the film is bird wings themselves which could be symbolic for flight or flying. For example, there was a nice visual metaphor created during one scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s classic horror movie Psycho where an image of Marion Crane (played by Janet Leigh) standing inside her office with open window blinds behind her flashes on screen right before she takes off into flight while Norman Bates’ mother watches through another window; this imagery represented the bird wings that were about to carry Marion away from danger.
Birds are often used as symbols for rebirth, resurrection, and immortality because they can fly into the sky after death where their souls live on among stars forever. This bird symbolism is especially apparent in many ancient myths such as Egyptian mythology which explains why there are so many bird mummies found within pyramids of kings who believed they would be resurrected by birds carrying them up to heaven upon death; however, this bird symbolism could apply to any religion depending on what type of afterlife its followers believe in including Christianity or Buddhism (which both teach an eternal life). Many people choose cremation over traditional burial today due partly to these symbolic meanings associated with bird flight and freedom at the time of passing while some bird symbolism exists within this practice as well.
Literature is filled with bird symbolism because birds are everywhere! Many stories, poems, and songs use bird symbolism to convey their messages. Some examples include The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe or the classic poem Jabberwocky written by Lewis Carrol in Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland.
Birds can be symbolic of love through the literature just like they appear in real life for this same reason; however, it all depends on what type of bird you’re looking at when determining if its meaning will change depending on where you live within the world since different cultures have many unique bird symbols that come from specific beliefs about them. For example, there is a well-known Native American folklore story called Eagle Boy who transformed into an eagle after his father took him along with him to a special ceremony where he was expected to perform certain tasks that would have been difficult for his physical bird body.
People all over the Earth love bird symbolism in literature because birds represent freedom and happiness which are two very important things we value as humans; this is why it’s such an easy symbol to find within children’s stories or fairytales like The Ugly Duckling, Peter Pan, Pinnochio, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (where Dorothy meets up with several different types of bird-people including crows and sparrows), and many others! We wish sometimes that we could fly away from our problems as they can so easily do through bird flight represented by their wings; however, even though we cannot transform into bird bodies, we can still keep bird symbolism in our lives and find ways to express ourselves through it as artists do by drawing birds on the outside of their houses or clothing (which also became popular when people started wearing Native American feather headdresses for fashion).
Birds appear in music as bird symbolism because they are everywhere and we love them! Here is a very short bird song playlist:
- The Beatles – Blackbird
- Simon & Garfunkel – El Condor Pasa (If I Could)
- Nora Jones – Birds of Minden
- Coldplay – Birds
- Fleetwood Mac – Albatross
- Bob Dylan – Black Crow Blues
- Electric Light Orchestra – Bluebird
- David Bowie – Dodo
- Leonard Cohen – Listen To The Hummingbird
In the end, music is all about bird symbolism because it’s what makes us feel free and alive. Even though we cannot fly, bird songs remind us that there are always possibilities for new discoveries in life just like how people discover brand new species every year by exploring places they’ve never been before; therefore, with bird flights comes bird symbols which can be found throughout literature as well as different types of art created by artists who love their wings so much that they paint them on walls or wear them on clothes (sometimes even tattooing birds onto their own bodies). Whether you’re an artist looking for inspiration through bird symbolism or just someone looking for bird songs to play on the radio while you’re driving your car, bird symbolism goes far beyond what we once thought was possible and it all comes from bird flights.
Bird symbolism in different cultures
Some bird symbolism is well known while other bird symbols mean different things depending on what culture you’re studying. For example, many people know that white bird symbolic meanings have to do with peace but did you also know that some Native American tribes used eagle feathers to symbolize honor?
This is because every human society has its own unique way of interpreting bird songs using their own personal experiences as a frame of reference; thus even though birds represent freedom all across the Earth they can still be interpreted differently by each individual or tribe which makes them an extremely powerful bird symbol for children’s stories who need something relatable like animals instead of abstract concepts such as love. This helps make bird symbolism a universal bird symbol that can be enjoyed by people of all ages.
The costumes used during the Carnavale in Brazil and on the catwalks of Paris are often trimmed with feathers. Ancient civilizations viewed birds as sacred and spiritual. Because they travel across the sky to numerous distant places, they have always been regarded as messengers and predictors of future events
Birds were used in Ancient Egyptian religious art to exemplify the characteristics of the gods (bird god). The Egyptian God Horus was depicted with the head of a falcon because he was believed to be endowed with the mythical strengths and qualities of such strong birds of prey. They also believed that the bird symbol depicts the power of the soul leaving a person’s body.
Native American bird symbolism
In bird symbolism in Native American culture, the bird is often associated with a specific element depending on its physical characteristics such as color or movement:
- Eagles represent air and therefore higher thought processes and inspiration. People who have eagles as bird symbols are usually brave, strong leaders of their pack.
- Hawks symbolize fire and therefore energy, passion, and courage. Those people who believe hawks embody bird symbolism can be very passionate about what they do but also easily angered if crossed by another person/group/idea etc.
The bird symbolism of Native American culture represents a variety of different things. Some bird symbols were considered sacred while others had more common symbolic meanings like those found in Western cultures which use birds as metaphors to talk about freedom and independence since they can fly on their own.
Bird symbolism represents many things including guardian spirits as well as those who’ve met an untimely death and are now living among the stars which is why some cultures refer to shooting stars as “falling birds.”
See also the section “What do Native American Birds Symbolize” in this post.
Ancient Greek culture and mythology
In Greek mythology, the almighty Zeus was the boss of a giant golden eagle named Aetos Dios. The Greeks even invented the practice of reading the signs of the times through birds’ behavior called Ornithomancy. This bird symbolism is similar to augury, a practice of bird-watching for omens and portents.
The bird was also associated with the goddess Athena for which Athens (the capital city) was named. When Zeus’ first wife Metis became pregnant with Athena; he had a headache and asked Hephaestus (god of smithing) to split open his head so Athena could be born fully armed and armored. She was the only child of Zeus who did not have a bird symbol in bird symbolism in Ancient Greek culture because she wasn’t conceived by him but hatched from an egg after he swallowed Metis.
Greek mythology also uses bird symbolism for love like Cupid’s arrows. The bird symbolism of love is often associated with the bird-like image of Eros, Cupid’s counterpart who was usually depicted as a winged boy instead of an angelic child as his Roman name implies.
It was believed that Boreas (god of the north wind) used bird symbols to kidnap Oreithyia, a princess of Athens, and carried her to the banks of the river Ergines in Thrake (modern-day North Greece).
Images of birds found on the walls of caves where our early ancestors first dwelt were often accompanied by men and depicted spiritual awakening in Greece and ancient Egypt.
Ancient Egypt culture
Egyptian Bird Symbols were many in number and meant different things. Some of these included the ibis, the vulture, the buzzard, the falcon, the owl, the guinea fowl, the flamingo, the stork, the quail (quail symbolism), and the heron, and even the ostrich. The Egyptians believed that birds are asked by higher beings to fetch and guide the soul of a dying person to its new manifestation after it reincarnates.
Birds are associated with a few different deities.
- Horus was known as the sky god who could transform from a falcon to a human form whenever he pleased and his eyes were said to be sun rays because of their luminous nature’s association with Ra (the Sun God). He also had a bird symbol called the Bennu bird which is known as an Egyptian phoenix.
- Thoth was a god of wisdom and writing who wore an Ibis on his head to signify that he was wise enough to know how to read hieroglyphics (ancient Egyptian bird symbolism). He also had bird symbols like the eagle, hawk, and phoenix.
- Ammit who was a bird with the face of an and body of various different animals is said to eat any soul that failed their final judgment after they were weighed against Ma’at’s (the feather). She had bird symbols like vultures, eagles, kites, falcons etc.
The ancient Egyptians also believed in bird symbols representing the sun god Ra. They would use bird symbols to symbolize his different forms and aspects including a falcon, a scarab beetle, and a snake with wings that could be seen in various ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics.
The bird symbolism of happiness can also be traced back to Ancient Egypt since they held festivals called “Feasts of the Beautiful Reunion” where bird petting zoos were set up.
In China, they put their faith in the belief that when a person dies, his soul will take the form of a bird to fly up to the heavens. The ancient Chinese philosophy Taoism believes that a three-legged red crow that lives in the sun stands for the Great Triad which is the three great powers of being: Man, Heaven, and Earth.
It’s important to note that many Chinese people have bird tattoos as well which symbolize freedom from pain or imprisonment. Many criminals were tattooed with bird symbols to indicate their sentence status.
In Celtic bird meanings, the bird is a symbol of rebirth and renewal. The bird can also be symbolic of transformation or change in life circumstances which was greatly prevalent during their early history when they fought many wars that changed them forever.
For example; ravens are often seen as bad omens because they were seen to represent death but on the other hand, they were also bird symbols for Morrigan (Celtic war goddess) who would often take the form of a raven to give victory or death to men in battle.
Other Celtic bird symbolism includes crows which are known as bad omens that bring about misfortune and change whereas swans symbolize love, beauty, gracefulness, and perfection.
The bird in Celtic symbolism is also associated with the underworld which can be seen by common bird tattoos of crows, ravens, and vultures that are worn by criminals who were often sent into exile or death. The bird was used as a form of punishment where they would tattoo these symbols onto their skin to show what they had done wrong.
The bird is also a bird symbol for the Celtic god Lugh who was seen as a protector against evil and darkness which can be represented through many bird tattoos of ravens, doves, owls, etc. The Celts saw birds as messengers from other worlds that were often associated with omens both good and bad.
The symbolism of birds in religion is living proof that these creatures are so much more than hollow bones and feathers. They represent hope, strength, unity, and love – all the best parts of being human. Even throughout history, people have recognized this importance through biblical references to them as a symbol for everything from good luck to bad omens.
The bird symbolism in Christianity is quite ambiguous since it represents both good and evil. For example, the bird symbolizes the Holy Spirit when feeding its young which is symbolic of Jesus’ relationship with his followers or “children” who are also referred to as God’s children. The bird was seen as a representation of guardian angels that would watch over the “children” and guide them along their way.
The bird in Christian symbolism can also symbolize the evil side such as when it is used to describe Satan who often would take bird form just like his other animal counterparts that were seen in many different forms by early civilizations around the world. The bird was usually a raven or vulture which represents death and destruction where the bird would often be portrayed as an “angel of death”.
Another bird symbolism in Christianity is that it can represent hope. The bird was seen to symbolize new life, especially with their tendency to fly high into the sky which represents a higher place spiritually. It also refers back to Jesus’ ascension into heaven after his resurrection on Easter Sunday.
The bird has also been used to symbolize the Holy Trinity since it is composed of three parts: body, soul, and spirit which is represented through bird tattoos that depict doves for each part or birds in general. The bird can be seen as a symbol of good luck, especially when flying overhead where it would bring about blessings from the heavens.
For centuries, birds have symbolized life, death, the future, the past, and countless other signs. Bird symbols are all around us. From automobile and sports team names, paintings and sculptures, birds have been well integrated into different cultures. Birds have played various roles in folklore, religion, and pop culture.
Birds are just an amazing, multi-faceted, and oftentimes mystical breed. No amount of belief in, marks and symbolism will ever be enough to represent these awesome, majestic creatures. All we can really do is to keep believing that we too can fly.
Dreaming of birds
Birds are a common motif in dreams and depending on their context within the dream they can represent wildly different concepts. In general, however, birds are seen in mostly positive regard. They may represent prosperity or abundant wealth especially if they are rather large in appearance. Some birds mean harmony and love while others indicate struggle or difficulty in life; dreaming of any type has its own unique interpretation depending on the variables like species, sight and manner observed.
In dreams, they may also represent freedom and the ability to fly high. If a bird is flying overhead it can be seen as an omen of good luck whereas if you feel like you are not capable enough to achieve something, birds in dreams can symbolize this feeling by representing fear or anxiety about what lies ahead.
A bird flying towards you may represent good omens or fortune soon to befall you or your family. However, if the bird is flying away from you, it may represent a missed opportunity or a bygone period of wealth and prosperity departing
It’s very important while dreaming and attempting to interpret these dreams to be keenly aware of your emotional feelings when exposed to a symbol. How does the bird make you feel? Does it bring you joy? Or does it leave you with a sense of dread? Read more in my post: dreaming of birds.
Dead bird in a dream
An omen, in most cases, foretells the future and signifies an advent of change. For instance, if you find a dead bird hit on the road, you may feel as if it is a bad sign. Running into a dead organism is not pleasing anyway. Along these lines, people get nervous whenever they encounter a dead bird dream and start looking for omens associated with the experience. The meaning they find and the
Bird tattoo meaning
Bird tattoos are popular due to their beauty and the particular stories behind each species but tucked under their colorful wings lie hidden meanings and special messages. What is the meaning behind different bird tattoos or what bird symbolism can you use to express your own personal identity (tattoos have always been used as a means of identification)? Did you know that goldfinches appear in dreams and that a raven is an ancient omen of death? Birds are used throughout history to convey emotions, foresee prophecies, and guide people to safety. They also come in a wide variety of shapes, colors, and designs. Let’s dive into what tale each of these birds has to share and what bird tattoo is just right for you! Learn more about bird tattoo meanings here.
What does it mean when a bird poops on you?
One of the most annoying occurrences in our day-to-day life is encountering bird poop. It can be a real nuisance if you get bird poop on your head while you are on your way to the office or a party. You also would not like the sight of your car covered in bird poop. So, what does it mean when a bird poops on you?
According to Turkish culture, it is believed that bird poop is a sign of good luck. It is supposed to bring prosperity and riches. In fact, Russian culture also has a mention of this superstition and believes in the luck factor associated with bird poop. Now you might concur that this belief of bird poop bringing luck is a way of cheering yourself on a bad day. It is just a way of consoling yourself when you find your favorite dress tainted with bird poop. Well, to a large extent many people take this as a reason to feel good after a bird drops its blessings on them.
Bird in house Meaning
There are a huge number of superstitions and meanings associated with birds. This only comes more to the fore when it involves your own home as well, especially the wild bird in a house meaning. In general, the associated meanings of a bird flying into your house are not good. A bird entering your dwelling is said to be a sign of bad fortune. It is thought to herald some impending doom or bad news that you will soon receive. In fact, a bird entering your house could precede the worst news of all, such as the death of a loved one. Read more about the bird in house meaning here.