The Jedi Training Archive
Mrs. Darth Vader's Lessons- Animal Totems- 14- Owl
Written by Mrs. Darth Vader

Keynote: The mystery of magic, omens, silent wisdom, and vision in the night.

Cycle of Power: Nocturnal (nighttime) - Year round

The most out standing characteristic about an owl, is they see, especially at night. They can even see better at night than a cat. Owls have extra cones and rods in the retina to enable them to see the slightest movement at night. This is a very powerful totem and is the epitome of an Anakin who sees and senses everything even that which people try to keep secret. With eyes that penetrate the darkness of night, the obvious symbolism here is even in the darkest, evilest of days, the owl will see. Even at the gates of hell, the owl will still see. The yellow coloring of the eyes is very symbolic, with eyes that glow they are the lights in the darkness of night, a little sun in the dark so to speak. When Anakin gets the yellow eyes, it is the light in the darkness. Anakin has eyes that look like an owl. Anakin as we know never turns 100% dark but even as Darth Vader has that little light in the dark of night. This is the Darth Vader that Luke Skywalker talks to in Episode VI. Anakin is the only Sith to have the owl look in his eyes. As the one who sees, Anakin (Shiva) brings judgment. This incredible ability to see this clearly links owl to the third position of the Kabalahistic tree or the Holy Spirit position. If you have this totem you may have to expect, like with bobcat, that you will not be popular because people with things to hide do not want you around because you see all. When you see this clearly, the danger here is in truly becoming Darth Vader because you see all the evil in people and want to fight back and want justice to come. Your anger can really well up and the desire for revenge is great. The owl also can adjust his vision from a telescopic to a microscopic vision in an instant. This means in human terms that people with this totem can see the big picture how all things connect to the small picture, your little life situation. This person is versatile and can switch from the big picture to the small quickly. Again seeing being owl's greatest ability.

The owl is many times referred to in totem terms, a cat with wings. This is because so many attributes that are given to cat is embodied in the owl. If you get owl as a totem it would help to look at the cats both domestic and wild as well. Nature is very interconnected and many totems overlap and easily cross into another. This is because the Force is in all and binds the universe together. The owl can see in the day as in the night. The cones and rods will adjust to the daylight. Owl just prefers the night as its usual schedule. There are some times when an owl will hunt in the day if necessary. The snowy owl will do this. They prefer the night but are able to function as well in the day.

Owl is a bird of the night because of this it symbolizes the mysteries of magic and is considered one who can teach you these mysteries. Many cultures saw owl in many ways. The Pawnee considered owl to be a symbol of protection. But the Ojibea saw owl as evil and death. The Pueblo tribe saw owl as their Shiva ( Anakin/ Vader) figure. The owl to them was a skeleton man of death but also a god (archangel) of fertility thus giving the owl attributes of death and kundalini. This clearly links owl with Shiva ( Anakin/ Vader). The Greeks linked owl with Athena, goddess of higher wisdom. The Greeks is where we get the expression "The Wise Old Owl".

Owl medicine is associated with clairvoyance, astral projection and magic. The magic is both black and white. The owl will teach both Jedi and Sith arts. The owl has the ability to extract secrets because it is a bird of the night and the night symbolizes our inner darkness. This inner darkness is what humans usually try to hide and pretend is not there. Here is where the secrets lie. Owl, like Palpatine, will pull this out of you and know all. Here is where owl is like the ultimate C.I.A. agent and knows too much.

Owls are silent at flying. The front edge of the wings has a fringe that makes the flight silent. The wings of the owl is massive compared to the size of the owl itself. This also contributes to keeping the owl's flight silent. This is how they get their prey. Crows will chase an owl away if they see it in the day because they know if they do not chase it out, at night the owl will silently kill the crow in his sleep. If you have owl as a totem a look at crow will be beneficial. Owl is a bird you never hear coming. When owl strikes it is sudden and from the silence and dead of night. Here owl has a touch of Palpatine. Remember Palpatine in the opera scene, while talking to Anakin, referring to Darth Plagues " His apprentice killed him in his sleep. He had powers to save others but not himself." Here is where the owl person is like Palpatine and catches you off balance or unaware, "in your sleep", when you are most vulnerable.

Owls swallow their prey whole but unlike snake, the owl regurgitates the indigestible parts in the form of owl pellets. The owl can not digest things like the bones, fur, teeth, claws and the like. Symbolically this means for those with owl as a totem that when you read books to get knowledge you will digest and absorb the essential and important and toss out the non-essential and unimportant.

The ears of an owl are asymmetrical. One ear is usually larger than the other. Each ear is located in a different spot on the head. This allows the owl to know the exact location of a sound. The owl can find its prey just by hearing it. The eyes of the owl does not move so the owl turns his head rapidly by the neck. This increases the owl's peripheral vision. Those with owl totem may need neck massage due to a tightening of the neck.

Owls and hawks share the same territory. One is day shift, that being the hawk. The other is night shift, that being the owl. Some owls and hawks just tolerate each other but do not necessarily get along. On the other hand there are some kinds of owls and hawks that actually get along and act in unison and are friendly to each other. This depends on the kind of owl or hawk in question. Both the owl and the hawk have the best eyesight of all raptors (meaning birds of prey). Hawk medicine is the day time balancer of owl medicine. In some cases a form of falcon is a balance medicine to the owl.

I will cover six kinds of owl in brief to not get too long. Five of them have hawk/ falcon equivalents. The first being the great horned owl. This owl is the most aggressive of all the owls. Owls like living alone except to breed. The great horned female, being the most picky, will not let the male near her until he has won her trust. So if you get a female great horned owl as a life totem, chances are you will not marry unless the man is the right man for you. You will accept singleness rather than have a settled-for mate. The great horned is the most ferocious and most successful predator of the owl family in America. The great horned owl can easily snap the neck of a woodchuck. The great horned will not hesitate to take any prey that presents itself, even other birds of prey. The red tailed hawk is the solar, day time equivalent to the great horned owl because they share the same territory. The favorite habitat of the great horned is dense wooded areas of hard wood and conifers, but they will go anywhere there is a source of food. In the case of the great horned and the red tailed hawk, they do not get along at all. They share the same territory but as rivals. The great horned owl harasses the red tailed hawk so much that the red tailed hawk will try to eliminate the great horned when a chance presents itself. Skunk is the favorite food of the great horned owl. Skunk should be studied if great horned owl is the form owl comes to you as a totem. Of course its rival red tailed hawk should be studied as well.

Red-Tailed Hawk:

The next owl is the barn owl. The barn owl can be identified by a heart shaped edging on the face. Because of the heart shaped face, this symbolizes the ability to link the heart and the mind. People with this totem should be able to do that. The barn owl has gold feathering on the top. He has white feathering from below. The gold links him with God and some solar aspects due to the association of gold with the sun. Because of the fact that if you look at barn owl from below and see white feathering, this gives him a ghost like appearance. Due to this white feathering, barn owl got the nickname "Ghost Owl". The barn owl can teach you how to have spirit contact and medium ship. This is the owl you need if you wish to contact the dead. The barn owl is a master hunter. If you were a farmer and had a pair of barn owls, they would kill more mice than ten cats in a single night. The barn owl in addition to the asymmetrical ears also listens by echo location similar to that of the dolphin but on land like the bat. If you get barn owl as a totem, you will get the inner ability to hear spirit. If this trait is not there yet, it will soon develop after the appearance of barn owl. This includes the ability to hear the Force.

The third owl is the barred owl. This owl is a master vocalist and has a charming personality. The attributes of the Ansuz rune applies here. This owl will teach you how to speak well and adds charm. People with this owl as a life totem should consider the field of politics. The barred owl is usually found in dense forests and swamps. The barred owl is harmless by nature. This owl is a great actor. It can put on quite a show, giving the appearance of being threatening. The barred owl shares the same territory as the red shouldered hawk. These two get along well and even on occasions have shared the same nesting space. You would want to look into red shouldered hawk if barred owl is your totem. This is a friendly cooperative owl. People with this totem can unite others and work amicably with others.

Red-Shouldered Hawk:

The next owl is the screech owl. The screech owl is only heard if the young are threatened other wise they make a soft whinny sound. The screech is only six to ten inches tall and is the smallest of the owls so far discussed. This owl fits Yoda's statement "Judge me by my size, do you? Where you should not." because despite its small size the screech owl is courageous and fierce. The screech owl is a reminder that dynamite can come in small packages. The day time equivalent is the Kestrel. The kestrel is of the falcon family of birds. If screech owl is your totem, the kestrel should be studied as well. Both the screech owl and kestrel’s favorite prey is crickets and mice. So these prey animals should be studied as well. The screech owl does cooperative hunting, so like the barred owl, the screech is a communist. But the screech owl is aggressive, unlike the barred owl, and holds its own as an individual. This owl teaches you that you can be part of a commune and yet keep your individuality because this owl balances the ability to cooperate with individuality and fierceness is combined in this owl. Here we have a Darth Vader owl of the Empire. This is the smooth operation of big government communist Empire with the strength to maintain ones individuality. This is a real balancing act.


The short eared owl is the fifth owl to be discussed. Short eared is unique because it is one of a few owls that will hunt day or night. This is rare in owls because they prefer the night. The short eared owl will migrate. The short eared owl has a sixth sense because this owl will show up over night when there is going to be a field mice population explosion. It is as if days or weeks in advance short eared owl was told to go to said spot and here is plenty of food. People with this owl as a life totem will never fear shortages of necessities because people who have short eared owl will sense when to pack-up and leave an area to go to the spot where the pick-ins are better. Short eared owl is playful. Reminding us to have a little fun at life and relax. Do not just go on the hunt all the time. The short eared owl is an expert at aerial stunts and few birds come close to this expert of the air. Here short eared owl is like Anakin Skywalker the pod racer and super pilot, the old top gun thing. In most cases the crow will gang up and mob owls to chase them off and usually the owl draws the short end due to being out numbered, but in the case of the short eared owl, short eared owl has turned the tables on crow and actually wins and it is crow who ends up the victim of short eared owl. Because of short eared's overwhelming ability at aerial stunts this clearly makes him a real Anakin totem. Short eared owl shares the same territory with harrier hawk. The harrier hawk should be studied for balancing medicine. The short eared owl and the harrier hawk get along well sharing the same territory. They will even play together having mock "dog fights". They rarely fight for real because they are friends. Even harrier hawk who is the best flyer of the hawk family can not out do short eared owl in aerial stunts. If you get this totem, slumbering in you might be a great Air Force pilot. Or it could mean that no one can out fly you on the astral plane. Flight always stands for high spiritual stuff and leaving the mundane "muggle" world. people who "fly" in the dream state are usually achieving freedom in some area of life. Short eared is versatile and curious. It fears nothing and its abilities are second to none. The markings are flame like, which symbolically means fire and air mixture. This is an Anakin/ Vader that is super powered fire air and no fear. This is one tough customer. Short eared owl stimulates all energies. They stir the passions for life inspiration and imagination. For the Alchemical crowd the elements fire and air should be studied for those with short eared owl as a life totem.

Northern Harrier Hawk:

The last owl I will cover is the snowy owl. This gives a sample of each with in the owl family. The snowy owl lives in the Artic Tundra. This owl is made for this very cold climate. Even the talons have soft downy like feathering that is almost looks like fur. This bird will travel as far south as necessary to get to a food source. Snowy, like the short eared owl has the gift of prophecy because snowy will instinctively know if there is going to be a famine and leave the area. Snowy, like short eared will know where to go where the food is plenty. So if your owl is either the short eared or snowy than you may get the gift of prophecy and spirit. You will sense where the pick-ins are good. Snowy, like the short eared also can hunt in the day as well as night except snowy feels equally at home in the day as night, which clearly makes snowy the exception among owls. The prey of the snowy owl is lemmings and artic hares. Snowy is tricky because this owl will look like it is just lazily sitting there doing nothing but in reality, snowy is ever vigilant conserving energy and strength to attack prey when opportunity offers itself. This bird understands the no power wasted rule and uses it well. Snowy is the most silent of the owls. Silent of the already silent. Snowy comes into an area quietly and minds its own business to not draw attention to its arrival. If you get snowy owl as a totem, snowy can teach you how to master this silence. Snowy, like a cat, has well padded feet. Snowy can with draw its talons like a cat with draws its claws. This is unique for a bird because usually the talons do not retract. Like a cat Snowy can be both soft and sharp. Because snowy can retract the talons as a totem this signifies intimidation is not how snowy achieves what he wants. Skill and timing are what snowy teaches. This is the old quiet man at the back of the bar is the strong one, not the noisy one shouting. " This is a very skillful bird at the game of survival. Even the young can sprint, swim and even play dead if it is necessary, assuming an almost torpid state. This bird seems to embody the strength and power of the great horned, while having the temperament of the barred. And on top of it all it has the skill, courage and talents of the short eared." Quote by Ted Andrews in book "Animal Speak". Snowy and barred owls are the Jedi of the owl family. The others are more aggressive and there fore more Sith. The gyrfalcon is the balancer for snowy owl. They share the Artic Tundra territory and get along with each other. The gyrfalcon should be studied if snowy owl is your totem. The gyrfalcon is a Jedi bird and even embodies the Jedi code and knightly behavior symbolically as a totem.


As with all totems your intuition and communion with the Force will guide you as to its meaning in your life. I hope all who read these totems enjoys a walk threw the eyes of nature as seen by the American Indians.


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