Updated: Aug 22, 2021
The Animals are trying to Tell You Something
In the Northern Hemisphere, Autumn is about to be in full swing. Warmer than usual temperatures and heavy rainfalls may be prolonging our greener flora, but wildlife are on schedule preparing for what could be a harsh Winter.
You may notice furry friends doing a little grocery shopping in your back yard, or families of critters crossing the road more frequently.
But there are times when it feels like more than just everyday behavior. Here are a few common animal spirits I've encountered lately:
Hawks - Spirituality
Recently, I was driving down a back road with my mother, and we had to come to an abrupt stop. We saw what we thought were two large vultures blocking the road, watching us. As I crept a bit closer with my car, I began to see them a bit more clearly. They were actually hawks, but much larger than we would normally see in our area. They stared at us for a bit, and then flew away. I had never encountered hawks that close before, only watched them in the trees behind my parents' house.
My mom's eyes lit up, sure we had seen some type of spirit or messenger.
She recalled how earlier that week, she had been driving through roadwork (not uncommon in our area) and was stopped in traffic. She and my young sister were casually watching the work continue as they waited for their turn to move. Soon, my mother noticed that there had been a hawk perched on a road barrier, upon which a construction worker was leaning. At first, she had thought she was going a little crazy-- hawks normally didn't get that up close and personal with people around here. And they were pretty far from any heavily wooded area. Soon the construction worker also noticed the hawk perched beside him, and reacted as anyone who had not expected to see a bird of prey that close would.
My mom had decided that three hawks were the charm, and looked up their meaning when it came to spirit guides. According to SpiritAnimal.info, hawks signify those who utilize their intuition and aim to see things from a higher perspective. There is a strong connection to the spiritual world for those that see the hawk messenger.
Later that week, my father's aunt passed on. My parents were off to Puerto Rico to lay her to rest, and soon an impromptu adventure and journey into my father's family history had begun without them even asking. So much occurred on that trip, that I'll talk about later.
After that day, I started noticing hawks everywhere. They were way more active than they had been the previous year. I had decided I had better take advantage of their energy, and try to tap into the medicine they give. I've increased my moments in meditation, and have noticed a stronger connection in my faith in Mother Earth.
Orb Weavers - Creativity
Now, I have an intense case of arachnophobia. But I try to stay within myself about it, being of the witchy world and all. I try my hardest to respect all beings, especially those that are much smaller than myself.
Again, I was at my parents house, when my mother pulled me into her bedroom to show me something special. An orb weaver (my parents have three of them on their house!) had gathered a few meals for the week. In her foresight, she had pulled a small leaf to cover them in her web. I could see her resting with her food behind the leaf hanging outside my parents window (I'd never get that close without a pane of glass between us!) and was truly mesmerized.
I've also recently noticed a new orb weaver has taken up in the entrance to my office, so at night I try my hardest (for my sake and the orb weaver's) to run through the open door as fast as I can so as to not damage her web or risk a new web in my mop of curly hair.
The last straw, as I'm calling it, is a large photo of a spectacular orb weaver showed up at work (I work at a newspaper), submitted by a reader. I've decided that orb weaver, a spider I had never seen in this abundance before (or not cared to) is trying to tell me something.
According to SpiritAnimal.info, spiders represent creativity and feminine energy. Considering I've been feeling quite tapped lately when it comes to creativity, I'll take that as a sign to embrace my identity as an artist. In addition to being a journalist, I also paint and draw often (check out www.ashleyfontones.com) but have been feeling burnt out due to stress at work and school. Now that its October, I've been feeling inspired by the witch's holiest month of the year (or at least it is in my opinion!)
Elena Harris, editor at SpiritAnimal.info wrote "In Ancient Egypt, the spider was used as a symbol to represent the goddess of the Divine Mother, Neith. In some American Indian tribes, it is considered as the symbol for the creator of the world and by extension is associated with the female creative energy." This hits home for me for sure. I have a strong connection to both Native American culture, being Puerto Rican and with Taino ancestry, as well as a strong interest in Ancient Egyptian culture and history. Take from that what you will, but I love finding personal connections in what I discover online.
Deer - Sensitivity and Intuition
Although deer are quite common in my area, I couldn't resist the opportunity to look into them more. Where I live, deer are quite used to being in contact with people, so they don't necessarily run away from you if they are blocking the road or grazing on your property. I always approach cautiously, and with patience, even if there is a line of cars behind me!
The other day, again, visiting my parents, I came in contact with a mother doe and three fauns. The doe was calmly grazing on my parents' front lawn while the three babies were exploring the lawn across the street. She would take a break ever once in a while to take a look at them, no doubt making sure they were out of trouble. When she made eye contact with me, I got the chills. Just looking at her, I got this sensation that the world would continue turning. Does that make any sense? I felt a strong sense of peace, and that at the end of the day, nature would someday take control. It was a fleeting feeling, but comfortable nonetheless.
Deer are described as being spirits of intuition and gentleness, promoting sensitivity wherever they go. Deer can help us connect with the mysteries of life and are also linked to our heart chakra.
When I started to outline this article this morning, I couldn't help but see a pattern within the three spirit animal guides I had encountered in September. As we move further into October, I am going to try and keep aware and in tune with my spirit and foresight, as well as explore my creativity a bit. Who knows what I can learn if I don't try?
Have you encountered any animal spirits lately? Share your story in the comments or by e-mail! email@example.com
Visit www.spiritanimal.info to learn more about animal totems, spirit guides and more!
- Ashley, hedgerider and occasional journalist