The Wisdom of Owls
I am Owl
Swift creature of the dark night
Guardian of the Spirit’s flight
Herald of new direction
Ancient wisdom in reflection
Nature’s shy and silent one
Who sees beyond the setting sun.
From Wisdom of the Four Winds Oracle
©by Cecilie Okada & Barry Brailsford
Many people ask about my name, Beth Owl’s Daughter. Although such a name sounds like I am of the First Nations, I am not a Native American. My roots are Celtic, from a shamanic lineage with intimate knowledge of owl magic. Owl’s Daughter is my magical/spiritual name.
Owls have been important in my family, with my father and grandfather collecting thousands of owl-related items. Ever since I can remember, owls have been around me, fascinated me, and been my guides and teachers. I use my Spirit Name of Owl’s Daughter, not my mundane name, because my readings are a part of my spiritual path.
Owl’s gifts include:
- Seeing behind masks
- Messenger of secrets and omens
- Silent and swift movement
- Link between the dark, unseen world and the world of light
- Comfort with shadow self
- Moon magic
Even though owls are known the world over, and many live in close proximity to humans, surprisingly little is really understood about them, compared to other birds and animals. Scientists admit that even the common barred owl remains largely mysterious, with such basic data as the length of its incubation period (in the wild) in doubt. Information about owl courtship habits, visual displays, territorial behavior, and so on are, even now, speculative at best. It is no wonder, then, that the owl is universally respected as a symbol of mystery and power.
The owl is the bird sacred to Athena, Goddess of wisdom. As Her companion, the Little Owl (Athene noctua) perches upon Her shoulder or is gently carried by Her, revealing unseen truths. It has the ability to light up Her blind side, enabling Her to see and speak the whole truth. Owl is the guardian of the Acropolis. Also, the Goddess of Abundance, Lakshmi, claims the owl as Her sacred bird, the one who carries Her to Her destinations.
Owl represents Magic, Time and Space.
Owl protects me.
Owl can see what others cannot,
Granting me the gift to know the truth in others.
The owl symbolizes our third or spiritual eye and is thus associated with inner knowledge. Owl is associated with the mysterious, clairvoyance, omens, silent wisdom, and vision. She innately understands the cycles of life, death and rebirth. The owl is a symbol of the feminine, the Moon, and the night and has been called a cat with wings.
The owl is a master of flight and adaptation. She is not a victim, nor an aggressor; she takes the middle path between the hawk and the dove. She does not circle and circle in a restless hunt for prey. She sits in silence — observing, listening, patiently waiting for the exact moment to strike.
Her great skills are insight and discernment, and she has so much to teach us. While many humans are afraid of the night, the dark and the unseen, the dark is Owl’s friend. By learning the lessons of our shadow nature, we overcome our fears, make peace with our conflicts, and soar in freedom. This, indeed, is wisdom.
On Feb. 25, 2013, the New York Times posted this video about the growing research and popularity of owls.
Welcome, friend of owls. You are in good company here.