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We’ve heard that a black cat in your path is bad luck, but what about a cardinal in your window?

For as long as humans have had consciousness, animals, real or imagined, revered or feared, have been an integral part of our storytelling. Emblems of power and supernatural energy, animals are found in folklore, religious origin stories, and art of every kind.

Janet Rae Orth, an internationally known intuitive consultant, and spiritual counselor with over 28 years of experience guiding individuals toward their true path, has some hot takes on the symbolic meaning of seeing certain creatures.

Intuitive healer Janet Rae Orth shares her insights on what it means to see certain animal symbols.

Eagle

Eagles are associated with gods and divine messages. moosehenderson – stock.adobe.com

Orth imparts that these bids of prey, with their wide wing span, vision, and vantage, are symbols of strength and communion.

“The eagle is associated with Zeus, king of the Gods, who was believed to shift into an eagle to travel between worlds. As fierce apex predators who soar high and above, eagles represent strength, wisdom, and freedom. Due to their tremendous eyesight, these birds are believed to see what others cannot. Thus, they remind us to rise above our troubles, trust our intuition, and believe.”

Fox

PHOTOLIFESTYLE – stock.adobe.com

Orth explains that the sly fox appears when we are most in need of direction: “These animals are stealthy, silent, and mysterious. Known for their cunning hunting and hiding abilities, foxes are seen as wise guides to those seeking clarity and direction. With ties to the Divine, seeing a fox can be a warning to us when we are about to make the wrong move or trust the wrong person.”

Coyote

Harry Collins – stock.adobe.com

Heard more than seen, coyotes are among the more mythic creatures we can encounter. Orth expounds, “Coyotes can throw their voices so they sound far away, deceiving their prey. Spotting a coyote at night can be considered a sign from our ancestors while seeing one in the daytime alerts us to look for sudden changes or new opportunities. As these animals are tricksters, seeing a coyote is a warning to be on guard and aware that things may not be what they seem. “

Black bear

Jillian – stock.adobe.com

The elusive, powerful black bear is fiercely protective, a symbol of maternal instinct. Because bears hibernate for months at a time, they also remind us that we can renew through reflection and heal and strengthen through solitary contemplation. Orth maintains, “The black bear may serve as a spirit guide to those needing direction. Seeing one is meant to inspire us to be fearless in the face of adversity.”

Cardinal

Buddy Woods – stock.adobe.com

Rare birds that appear in all seasons, cardinals are bright as blood and mate for life, a devotional quality that extends to their symbolism. Orth imparts, “Cardinals are a symbol of loyalty, a sign that you have a faithful partner and a happy home life or that a new love is on its way. In both instances, seeing a cardinal is a call to trust more deeply and love more fully.” 

Blue jay

Brian E Kushner – stock.adobe.co

According to Orth, “Blue jays take no s–t.” She continues, “These birds can mimic other bird calls to lure birds of prey away from their nests. Thus, they represent faithfulness and protective energy. Seeing one is a sign to remain determined, assertive and vigilant.” 

Frog

TPG – stock.adobe.com

Catching sight of a frog is considered a lucky omen, as the frog’s metamorphosis from egg to tadpole to whole represents fertility and urges us to trust that transformation is always to our ultimate benefit. Orth expounds, “Expect to be renewed! Frogs are a sign that there will be new stages and new beginnings.”

Bass

Ryno Botha – stock.adobe.com

Roaming both lakes and rivers, bass are known to school together to protect their ranks from predators. Orth expounds, “They represent tenacity, determination, focus, and protection. Their numbers represent abundance, fertility, and peace. Catching one is considered to be the equivalent of catching a miracle.”

White-tailed deer

hkuchera – stock.adobe.com

The white-tailed deer, wide-eyed and gentle, is a common sight in North America. Orth explains, “These animals seamlessly blend into their environments and have long been a symbol of grace and agility. Respected by Native Americans for their ability to outrun predators, they represent good luck, harmony, and divinity, reminding us to keep our feet moving and our hearts open.”

Garter snake

dejavudesigns – stock.adobe.com

Orth explains that the garter snake is as versatile as it is vital. “These non-venomous snakes live in many habitats, from forests to fields and gardens, representing adaptability. Because they come out of the ground when the land is wet, they symbolize fertility, new beginnings, and the hope of healing.”

Box turtle

Fabio – stock.adobe.com

Orth explains that the slow-moving, shell-dwelling box turtle is a symbol of tenacity in all circumstances, “These animals represent wisdom, longevity, transformation, and introspection. They are a sign to stay on your true path. The road may be long but stay the course. Because turtles both swim below the surface of water and walk on land, they are seen as a symbol of renewal and rebirth. Their ability to retreat to their shells reminds us to seek our own counsel and listen to the tune of our inner voice.”

Chipmunk

George Schmiesing – stock.adobe.com

Orth explains of the resplendent rodent, “Chipmunks symbolize joy, hard work, and resourcefulness. These animals store food in anticipation of the change in seasons. Seeing one encourages you to be prepared for life’s shifts while consistently making time for play.”

Astrologer Reda Wigle researches and irreverently reports back on planetary configurations and their effect on each zodiac sign. Her horoscopes integrate history, poetry, pop culture and personal experience.

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