Sunday, September 4, 2011

Bird Myths: Life - Death - Creation

I came across several references to birds flying in and out of windows, into your house and pretty much all of them said that it meant there has been or will be a death in the family or of a friend. It referenced the soul leaving the body on death and going into birds. As birds are the in between of the earth and after worlds. Birds are messengers.

I took this to be a good sign, as my mother-in-law had passed away this year and had not seen our new home. She loved watching the birds come to the feeders, her favorites were finches and hummingbirds. Maybe it was she who came for a visit.

Birds have been a strong theme for Marilu & I over the last several years. It seems to me that this increased greatly after our trip to Alaska. The myths on birds there are strong, the eagle associated with royalty, strength, courage, often thought of as a hero and a hunter. The raven is just as powerful in the world of myths. Ravens are both heros & tricksters. The raven presented many gifts to humans, light from the sun, moon & stars, names for plants and the formation of the earth (Denali - the great one).

Being in AZ this week I noted the reference of the phoenix, burning up every 500 years to rise again from the ashes. May have something to do with the heat around here.

The last note on birds for today is the Owl, symbol of wisdom, patiences & learning but also thought of as dark, a night hunter and secretive. One of my favorite birds to draw. I read a Navajo myth that the owl stopped man & woman from a quarrel allowing the creation of the human race.

If you want to do a little more reading on the subject of Myths and Birds you might want to look at http://www.mythencylopedia.com/ I found much of the information there along with a few other sites. 

Marilu's scratchboard of raven

Linda's monotype of raven

Linda's pastel of snowy owl

Marilu's scratchboard of snowy owl

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