Heron Symbolism & Meaning (+Totem, Spirit & Omens)

Tori Rhodes
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Heron Symbolism and Meaning

The Spirit and Totem of Water

Herons are fascinating birds.

They have a generally friendly and tranquil demeanor. However, they are not afraid to stick up for themselves and their nests if needed.

These birds are often sighted near bodies of water or where fish or amphibians live. Heron’s don’t have a problem with swallowing food whole because they have many small sharp teeth. They swallow fish whole quite easily!

In some cultures the heron is a symbol of water and a spirit of renewal.

In Greek mythology, Herakles is eating the fat of the lion when Hera, his wife, comes to him. She suspected that he was going to cheat on her with another woman. She fetches the servant girl for him and forces her to lie with him. Hera also places her own servant’s heart in the girl’s chest. In the meantime, she is bitten by a snake and Hera and the girl are friends.

Heron Native American Symbolism

To almost every country and culture, the heron is one of the many beautiful birds that inhabit the Earth.

It is said to have a connection to the world of the dead.

There is an ancient tradition that says this bird is the sole purveyor of the souls of humans to the underworld.

The way they fly in the air, they capture the eye, and the way they stand is an extremely graceful gesture, and it has come to attract admirers from around the world.

It is not uncommon to find the same heron standing in a body of water, and even in times when the weather is less than ideal.

Another great aspect of the heron is its talons. Their oddly-shaped feet give them the ability to hold onto prey, and what you will also notice is the way they hold their food and other items.

This bird always has its head down and in doing so gives off the image they are conspiring against you and are intent on watching you.

They are such a beautiful sight to see, they are rarely the cause of worry, but there are instances when you see them fighting for their lives.

The heron has come to be the symbol of peace, and their presence is a sign of contentment.

Heron Christianity Symbolism

The symbolical meaning of heron is very similar to the general symbolism attached to large birds.

Since they soar above the living beings, they are a symbol of a superior soul.

This superior soul is sometimes a spirit, the spirit of the great ones.

They stand for vision, moral perspective and a good opinion, the dangers they bring are illusions and deception based on a distorted vision of the reality.

The heron symbol is the crossed beak which represents an instrument which breaks through and transforms any obstacles of the way forward.

The heron symbol is also the unique gaze of these birds, which is a symbol of prudence, wisdom or insight.

Personally, I see the spirit of heron as being selective and discerning in the choice of its friends and confidants, always taking care that it does not accept every proposal or statement without thinking.

It is generous in spirit, but it demands to be respected and it is very sensitive to insults.

Herons give us wise advice. Both of us use this, to be alert to avoid danger, and to take advantage of the opportunities that come to us.

Heron Celtic Symbolism

The heron is also associated with healing, offering a possibility of renewal. So, it can represent a time of reconciliation, happiness and peace.

And conversely, the heron may portend uncertainty with the likelihood of change. Or it could symbolize the unexpected loss of a loved one, especially if a heron is spotted in the evening.

According to Greek mythology, humans and herons share the same ancestor. At its root, the heron`s symbolic meaning will be associated with birth, procreation and childbearing.

In general, the heron is considered a good omen if it is seen in the morning and a bad omen if it is seen in the evening. This is because the heron`s flight is low, and it travels close to the ground. So, seeing a heron during the evening is thought to be a sign of the coming of death.

Heron in Dreams

If heron symbolism and meaning come to speak to you while you are asleep, interpret your dreaming, keeping in mind the nature and personality of this bird.

Birds that represent oracles, spirituality or prophecy.

If you are out for a long walk and you see a heron, consider the meaning of seeing one as a present. In addition, this bird may condense the mystery of the unknown.

The word heron comes from the Latin, “heron”, and from the Indo-European, “ar”.

As you know, the common heron, is related to the group of long-necked wading birds, the Ardeidae family. They are native to all continents except South America and Antarctica.

They are also related to storks, but these birds are generally aquatic and hunt for fish, frogs, insects or other small animals.

They nest in colonies and they are generally sedentary in the areas where they live. On one hand, some species migrate and others alter depending on the season.

When they are young, they are protected by their parents for a couple of years before they are able to mate and perpetuate the colony.

They have long legs and necks, with long legs and long necks, with egg-toed feet and two claws which are hooked backward.

Heron Encounters and Omens

If you sight a heron in your dream, it denotes unexpected developments, provoking you to be creative and industrious, or you may have a friend who is innovator and talented in many arts.

Keep in mind that the heron is a worker by nature and its presence denotes your own diligence, craftsmanship and skill. To dream that you are killing a heron, indicates deceitfulness and treachery developing in your life. To dream that a heron is wounding you, tells you that your activities will bring about much suffering and sorrow.

Heron Mythology and Folklore

These heron totem animals are often regarded as the keepers of deep esoteric wisdom. That is probably due to these birds prominence in ancient history as they are nearly always found in human history regardless of what period of history we are referring to.

Heron Power animals are considered guardians and watchers. They have been known to guide and warn humankind.

Herons have appeared in numerous ancient myths and legends around the globe from the African continent to South and Central America, India, Japan and China. Many natives of South America worship the heron as a powerful water god capable of controlling the rain.

The Japanese heron is considered a messenger of the gods, delivering the divine messages of the Thunderbird (the god of the winds) to the land of mortals.

Heron Powers typically express a message of transformation:

Sudden or violent change is usually accompanied by the sighting of these birds.

Heron Spirit Animal

Mythology, Totem and Meaning

When it comes to understanding the meaning and symbolism of the Heron, it is helpful to look into mythology and how the Heron appeared throughout historical times.

The Heron appears in many cultures from the Native American tribes to Greek culture to Chinese mythology and more. Some cultures see the Heron as a positive symbol while others see it as a negative omen.

The amount of different meanings and interpretations of this animal make it a confusing creature to understand. However, if you look closely, you will see that each culture identifies the Heron as a trickster.

The trickster can be someone who provides positive outcomes or negative outcomes. The trickster has the ability to hide his intentions and therefore allows the reader to make their own interpretation of the actions of the character. This is a quality that the Heron posses and you will see this quality throughout the different cultures.

Heron Totem Animal

Whoever you ask about the heron, a majestic bird that can be found around the world, will surely speak of its beauty and importance in the ecosystem.

It’s the national bird of Latvia and is well represented in Egyptian mythology and Japanese art. They are also used as a symbol on many coats of arms and serve as an important part of one´s past.

Heron Power Animal

Meaning, Symbolism, & Totems.

Heron power animal or heron spirit guide represents freedom.

The heron symbolizes freedom from human limitations or restrictions.

It is generally a darker symbol of darkness, rebirth, and transformation.

Most often, the heron is seen as a symbol of transformation. It’s a reminder that through shedding and transforming comes rebirth.

Oftentimes, people who have lost loved ones are sent a heron spirit animal guide or heron totem to guide them through the grieving and healing process.

The heron spirit animal teaches you that whether you are in the water or on land, in your human body or in the form of a heron, you are empowered and free to fly.

When you come into contact with the heron, you need to rely on your spiritual instincts to make choices with ease.

Heron Tattoo Meaning

Recalling the impermanence of everything, this beautiful bird is an ideal symbol of transformation.

Their common response to disturbances is to calmly and quickly observe and then fly away. This adaptability makes them a great symbol of how to shift your focus and adapt to sudden changes.

Heron tattoo meaning comes from their stately beauty, their simple appreciation of the world, and their dedication to the important work of maintaining a natural balance.

Herons are harbingers of spring, the wakening nature and nature spirits. Heron symbolism reminds us that the time for regeneration is imminent, and that renewal will come.


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