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Animal Totems by Jenny Brice (Be Inspired guest author)

by inspire on November 24, 2009

great-grey-owlIn June of 2007, my family moved to a new home in Bellingham, Washington right on the trail into Whatcom Falls Park–a beautiful park and trail system along Whatcom Creek, full of wildlife, waterfalls and a shade of deciduous and cedar trees.  Gorgeous!  It’s quite a sanctuary of nature there and I was thrilled to be able to walk out my door and be in the woods within a couple of minutes.

Shortly after moving, our family walked down to Whatcom Falls, a 15 minute walk from our door and we all stood on the bridge admiring the powerful force of water before us.     Incredulous that this place is literally in our back yard, we marveled at our good fortune. 

While taking in the ambience at the waterfall, I peered down from the bridge to the water below us.   And staring back at me were the two bright eyes of an owl!  He was perched on the ledge of the bridge, looking up at us.  What a magical moment!  I felt blessed.  He then swooped down under the bridge and landed on a tree branch 100 ft away looking straight into my eyes.  “This is a real gift!” I thought.  What a magnificent bird!  I felt it was a good sign of welcome to our new home.

Later that month, on a return trip to the falls with some friends, I looked over at the tree branch where I had first seen the owl, and there he sat–Again!  I was amazed to have the good fortune of seeing him a second time, and within such a short time of my first sighting.  I started wondering what it might mean.

A month or two later, my cousin and I were taking a walk on one of the many side trails in the park .  As we were chatting, I looked over to my left into the trees, and there was my owl friend once again.  He sat bold and upright, staring right into me, almost as if to say “I have a message for you.”  As I reached for my camera phone to take a photo of him he suddenly swooped down across our path and landed on the opposite bank.  Spreading his wings, he tried to camouflage himself among the brush. 

Now this was my third owl sighting within a five month period or so.  I was starting to think “There must be a reason for this!”  So I went home and looked up “animal totems.”  Here’s what I read…”Animals come to us because they have a lesson we need to learn a power they are willing to share with a friend.  They seek to give us a gift of understanding, universal love, energy, and knowledge (ULEK).  In general, animals remind us that we are part of the earth; that each creature has a place; that each creature has a skill of it’s own; that we have instincts given to us from Mother, wisdom born to us that we must awaken.  The Animal  Totem that comes to you offers you power and wisdom if you will learn to communicate with it, with respect, trust, and understanding.

So here’s what I read about Owl: “Owl has the ability to light up our blind side, enabling us to speak the whole truth, as opposed to only half truth.  Owl is a feminine trait symbolically associated with clairvoyance, astral projection and magic.  When you have lost your way, owl essence will guide you back to your proper path and wisdom.  Owl medicine helps us clear out that which is no longer needed or wanted.”

I saw Owl one more time a couple of months later and my final encounter was a on a walk through the park where I encountered an enormous owl feather across my path.  The feather now sits upon my dresser and is a daily reminder to pay attention to the subtle messages all around us.

I believe that animals are great teachers if we take notice.  And I am noticing more than ever now.  Especially after another special animal encounter last week!

Last Wednesday evening, my daughter Emma and I went to the local coffee shop for something warm to drink .  Just after receiving our drinks, we sat at a table and looked out the window.  People were gathering around outside, circling and staring at something in the street.

We stood up and looked out the window, and there in the middle of the road was a hawk, having just taken a seagull down out of the sky!  Right there in the street and then onto the sidewalk, we were all able to stand within three feet of this magnificent bird.  It was amazing!  It was incredible to be so close to the hawk, and to witness the natural world in action.

Animal control arrived and said that the hawk was a Harris Hawk.  So I went home and looked up the message of the Harris Hawk as an animal totem.  Here’s what it said:

“Harris Hawk – represents cooperation and support from others.  This hawk helps one to spread the word about goals or projects to those people who can be helpful for you. For those who use music to help them soar high above, this is a wonderful totem to be working with as it helps to integrate music and sound as a healing modality.”

Being a musician, singing about peace and love and spreading a message to follow one’s dreams, I feel that once again, the animal kingdom is speaking to me.  What a gift!

Perhaps you may find some powerful messages among the animal friends who cross your path.  Pay attention!! 

Here’s a good video related to what Jenny talks about in the above post.
Jenny Brice is an inspirational singer and songwriter from Bellingham, Washington, USA. She has just released her first album entitled “Dreaming of Peace”. Her website is Jenny is also featured as a guest singer on the album “Dare to Dream” by Sean M. Kelly, Dare to Dream CD link


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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Cleo P. Sanda-Fuga November 25, 2009 at 6:23 am

What a beautiful story and insights, Jenny, thank you. And what a blessed environment in which you live! Very interesting the unique qualities each animal offers, so worth learning about to enrich our awareness and appreciation.

I used to belong to a wildlife rescue team when I lived in Malibu, California, and what a complete honor it was to come so close to God’s amazing creatures.

Happy Thanksgiving,
Cleo in Italy

Jenny Brice November 28, 2009 at 12:13 pm

Thank you for your comments Cleo and for your Thanksgiving wishes!
I certainly have much to be grateful for in my life and one blessing is indeed living in such a beautiful park. It is one of the most healing places I have ever lived. The wildlife here is fantastic! We are regularly seeing bald eagles, blue herons and all kinds of water fowl. I suppose I could have written something about their messages too! But the owl was something very special and rare for me–especially seeing it during daylight hours. I am glad you enjoyed my story!
I can imagine wildlife rescue being a wonderful experience! We are certainly blessed by the presence of animals in the world. A delicate web of life!
Thank you again for your comments!

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