I’ve always felt an affinity to Red Tail Hawks. In the area of the country where I’ve spent most of my life: Oklahoma and Texas, they are often visible on the side of the road. Sitting on telephone wires, in trees or on fence posts they wait for the unwary mouse, rabbit or snake to emerge.
I’ve come to believe that they are one of my Spirit Guides. I don’t use the word Totem as I am neither of Native American descent (or another Indigenous people who use Totems) and I do not consider myself following a Shamanic Path. However, I do believe in Guides –and for me it is understandable why they would be animals rather then angels or a god/goddess aspect.
As I reported on another blog (now that information moved here), I saw two hawks, on the same wire, facing opposite directions, on the left side of the road. Were they protecting each other’s backs and seeing more territory? Were they in opposition, going different directions?
The next week, I again saw two hawks again on the left side of the road (via my driving direction). This time they were in the same tree, one higher then the other, facing me as I drove towards them. In my time watching hawks, I’ve seldom seen two in the same area so close together.
While taking time to enjoy them I then saw the amazing sight of a large Great Horned Owl sitting on a fence post! He turned his head to calmly watch my passage! This was the only time I have ever seen an owl in the wild.
Coming home late one evening, another owl glided silently across the road’s path we were traveling (right to left, or north to south). A few days later a co-worker told Grenewinae that when she was out jogging, two rabbits crossed her path to be immediately followed by a huge owl in hot pursuit. The same day I was told the co-worker’s story, I left the horse barn, only to hear a soft “hoot” across the road where the National Forest begins.
In Steven Farmer’s Animal Spirit Guides, not only my own sightings but that of the co-worker’s tale to my husband, lends itself to a serendipitous call-to-attention by the owl to myself.
I started doing research on Owls, trying to discover what all these meetings could be trying to tell me. Some of these books you may also enjoy:
Animal Spirit Guides by Steven D. Farmer (he has a matching card set). One thing I like about this book is how he describes what it might mean if the animal appears to you, how to call upon the animal during specific needs (cross referenced in the back of the book) and if he is your Power Animal. Some animals come into our life to just impart a specific message and others become more permanent fixtures.
Animal Speak: The Spiritual and Magical Powers of Creatures Great and Small by Ted Andrews (also with a matching card set). Andrews goes into a lot of detail about Bird Magic (using imitation, masks and feathers), and discusses how to use the Prey-Predator relationship of your Animal Guides/Totems to further your understanding.
The Healing Wisdom of Birds by Lesley Morrison. A lovely book that goes into a lot of detail about birds and their meanings.
Animal Magick by D. J. Conway.
Even if you follow another spiritual path – Christian or alternative, Nature has a way of reaching to the core of our being; touching our essence and awakening a primal understanding.
Animals can serve as a reflection of our own truths that without their help we would not be able to recognize. Whether you are strong enough to grasp all their truths is determined by how deep you are willing to delve: what may be unpleasant or hidden even from your own, everyday self.