Hope & Healing Through Photography and Poetic Expression

Symbolic meaning of feathers

Symbolism of feathers often refers to ascension and spiritual evolution to a higher plane. Feathers were worn by Native American Chiefs to symbolize their communication with Spirit, and to express their celestial wisdom. Also in the Native American Indian culture, feathers represented the power of the thunder gods, along with the power of air and wind.

Native American Pueblo Indians would pay homage to the Feathered Sun which is a symbol of the cosmos and the center of existence. Another symbol meaning of feathers also revolves around prayer, and the Pueblo use feather sticks as they dance in prayer for rain during solstice rituals.

As a Celtic symbol meaning, the feather was worn by Druids in the form of ornate feathered robes. Celtic Druids donned these robes in ceremonies to invoke the sky gods and gain knowledge of the celestial realm. It was believed that the feathered cloak along with the presence of the sky gods would allow the Druid to transcend the earthly plane and enter the ethereal realm.

The Egyptians believed that feathers were symbolic of sky gods too. Ma’at, the Egyptian goddess of justice, would weigh the hearts of the newly dead in the underworld against the weight of a feather to determine the worthiness of his or her soul.

In Christianity feathers represented virtues. In fact, an image of three feathers were made into signet rings – each feather symbolizing charity, hope, and faith. These rings were worn as a symbol of a virtuous soul – they were also used as wax seals. The ring would be dipped in warm wax then pressed against documents to seal the closure. The recipient would know the documents came from a virtuous man by the indication of the three-feather symbol in the wax.

In dreams feathers mean travel or the ability to move more freely in life. White feathers in dreams indicate innocence or a fresh start in a spiritual sense.

*source: iVillage.co.uk

Click here to return to post: A Feather Falls 

 

37 responses

  1. Interesting information

    August 6, 2012 at 11:19 PM

    • Thank you Kim! I thought so too ~ always liked feathers but didn’t know why!! :)

      August 6, 2012 at 11:34 PM

  2. As someone who is surrounded constantly by feathers, because all the birds shed them constantly, I find this fascinating! Thanks Robyn!

    August 6, 2012 at 11:36 PM

    • That is right— you are exposed to sooo many feathers daily. Now bask in all the spiritual richness they symbolize. It’s funny I never knew much o this before, but always was intrigued by the feathers… and your birds — the most magnificent feathers on the planet I’lm sure xxoo

      August 7, 2012 at 12:02 AM

  3. I love learning something new…this was fascinating! I had no idea of the significance of feathers….no wonder kids are always drawn to them and want to collect them…actually a lot of adults do too! :) Hugs and Love sweet friend :)

    August 7, 2012 at 12:41 AM

    • Me too Christina – I love learning – and especially symbolism! There is so much related to the cultural significance of feathers – i had no idea either :) You are right – it makes sense why kids are so fascinated — and they are in the headpieces of native Indians etc. Fun to study this kind of thing while creating a blog post — never knew I’d get such an eduction through my blogging endeavors! Love to you too dear one ~ xxoo

      August 7, 2012 at 12:12 PM

  4. Then it is a very accurate discription of what comes from your always loving, sharing and embracing heart…your love! Beautiful post my sister!

    August 7, 2012 at 4:34 PM

    • Thank you Wendell! So much appreciate!!

      August 7, 2012 at 5:40 PM

  5. This music is a great artist in my country, Santaolalla and the musical theme is called “Birds”

    August 9, 2012 at 11:46 PM

    • Oh wow Carlos – I need to have this music on my iPod !! Can you recommend a favorite album I can order maybe through iTunes ? Was just wonderful to listen to ~ Gracias Thank you and Love~

      August 10, 2012 at 12:05 AM

    • Ok Carlos – I went ahead and got Gustavo Sanaolalla’s album called Ronroco ~ pretty amazing — what a gift you have bestowed upon me tonight – forever grateful…you have the best taste in music!! xxoo

      August 10, 2012 at 12:13 AM

  6. Beautiful images as always and accompanied by lovely words – and now, thanks to Carlos by some beautiful music too! I love this and will also be investigating the album that you bought. Thank you both :)

    August 20, 2012 at 12:47 PM

    • It’s great music… so amazing how blog friends can inspire us in so many ways!! Thank you kindly :)

      August 20, 2012 at 12:50 PM

  7. thanks for continuing to read…love your work too. beebeesworld

    March 9, 2013 at 8:35 PM

    • So welcome beebee ~ and feeling is mutual. You are a talented lady indeed ~ xo RL

      March 10, 2013 at 12:45 AM

  8. Symbolism seems to be everywhere in our lives and how dare we miss it when it comes in such a beautiful form as feathers. I too love the music and it’s now part of my collection. Thank you for sharing.

    March 31, 2013 at 7:04 PM

    • Oh I am so glad you found this old page Sheri — yes was fascinated to know about the symbolism of feathers! Always have been interested in symbolism, especially with regard to nature. Thrilled you enjoyed Carlos’ gift of tune here as well! Thinking of you with your upcoming ct surgery. Keep me posted! ~ much love, RL

      April 1, 2013 at 10:09 PM

  9. Love your new Gravatar pic Robyn!!! You never age. You look so young and pretty! Blessings to you. Robyn

    April 9, 2013 at 9:53 PM

    • Oh thank you so much Robyn! Was being silly the other night with hubby (it’s his hat) :) Was a bit shy to use it but fun for a change. Thank you for such a lovely compliment… you are too kind ~ Love and Blessings, R

      April 9, 2013 at 11:53 PM

  10. thanks for reading my blogs robyn beebee

    May 9, 2013 at 11:24 AM

  11. Very interesting article. The Cherokee part of me is fascinated with all things Native.

    May 15, 2013 at 8:52 PM

    • Thanks so much Barbara! I appreciate – yes so interesting to learn about the symbolism. I am amazed at how many people seem to come to this post. I guess there is a lot of interest in feathers! :) ~ Best wishes to you, Robyn

      May 16, 2013 at 6:47 PM

      • Feathers have always fascinated little girls and some of us just never grow up!!

        May 16, 2013 at 10:11 PM

      • :) yes I do love feathers — have a small collection actually!!

        May 16, 2013 at 10:43 PM

  12. jalal michael sabbagh.http://gravatar.com/jmsabbagh86@gmail.com

    Hi Robyn Lee , remarkable post.Thank you for sharing.Thank you for liking my post (The L.A. Times..) warm regards.jalal

    June 2, 2013 at 11:15 PM

    • Aww thank you so much jalal!! I am glad you enjoyed – and yes – truly enjoyed your post — so much believe the same!
      Love and Blessings ~ Robyn

      June 3, 2013 at 12:14 AM

  13. I believe that birds are messengers. We find what we are looking for even when we’re not trying, serendipity in a feather.
    The feather on the beach is the same shape as the curve on the horizon, lovely photo.

    July 17, 2013 at 1:19 PM

    • Thank you – I agree — the birds are very much the messengers and feathers tell us many truths if we take the time be with them.
      On another note, it is quite interesting that this particular “page” – gets so many hits on my blog. Sometimes more than my most current post does! Can you tell me if you just came across it at random, or it was brought to your attention in some way by WordPress or other source? So appreciate your lovely comment and wonderful visits here ~ I enjoyed visiting your place very much – stunning work! Love to you – RL

      July 17, 2013 at 1:50 PM

    • I was browsing your posts when I came across the symbolic meaning of feathers. The link to birds, feathers, Angels and spiritual guides, seems to be uppermost in our times. We are perhaps all searching for something more than this existence, ascending to higher realms, through love, acceptance, peace.

      July 19, 2013 at 12:48 PM

  14. thank you so much for this insight… it does seem to be a very frequently visited post – so I think you are on to something … there is a yearning for more love and acceptance and spiritual connectedness it seems – at least amongst our blogging family here :)
    ~ Love to you! Robyn

    July 20, 2013 at 1:07 PM

  15. divinechaos

    Great read. I was impressed with the background on feathers especially since I am a History junkie. The 3 feathers representing charity, faith, and hope was new information for me and has me thinking on today’s posting topics. As always, have a great day and continue to shine up this virtual world. ~DivineChaos

    July 29, 2013 at 8:22 AM

    • I am so glad you enjoyed it. Thank you! I did this post a long time ago (prior to my poetry) as a supplement to another… It is interesting that it gets a lot of traffic daily. I hope it has inspired you in a good way ~ Love and light… Robyn

      July 29, 2013 at 9:06 AM

  16. Pingback: The Amazing Art & Music of Christopher John Hobby a.k.a Kris Manalien & Robert James Lee « Homophobia in the UK

  17. Pingback: The Amazing Symbolic Art & Music of Christopher John Hobby a.k.a Kris Manalien & Robert James Lee | lee&manalien2014campaign4justice

  18. You can see a very beautiful pearl nautilus, gold and jewelled feather my partner created, here :- http://2013retribution.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/file009547_2592x1944.jpg

    January 15, 2014 at 8:12 AM

    • Just stunning!!!! Thank you for sharing ~

      January 15, 2014 at 10:28 AM

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