Owl is a messenger of magic, inner light, and exploration. One of my favorite bird totems, I know I’m in for a wild ride when an owl shows up in our yard. Let’s talk about Owl Totem meaning. I’ve included a simple meditation at the end of this post to help you connect with Owl energy.

Meaning of owl totem

When Owl shows up for you, it’s time to pay attention to your surroundings—and your internal landscape.

That means tuning into your inner wisdom, knowledge, intuition, and psychic ability. It’s symbolically connected with clairvoyance, astral projection, and magic of all kinds.

Owl is a harbinger of all things occult, which literally means “hidden.”

Owl soars through the night sky, under cover of shadow and darkness. Because it’s a nocturnal bird, it’s always carried an air of mystery to humans.

It relies on its keen vision and powers of observation to navigate and hunt.

Of goddesses and witches

Owls have long been associated with goddesses, witches, and both white and black magic. 

In ancient Greece, the owl was the symbol of the goddess Athena (Minerva in Roman myth) and represented wisdom. Before Athena was depicted as a human, she was shown in owl form. Owl was the guardian of the Acropolis.

In the Christian bible, Lilith, Adam’s first wife, was depicted with owl wings, feet, and talons.

Ragana was the Baltic owl goddess of women, fertility, childbirth and more. She was a psychopomp (guide to the otherworld) and a powerful healer.

Owls are also associated with the Welsh Celtic goddess Blodeuwedd, who personified feminine strength and liberation of opressed women.

Hindu goddess of wealth and good fortune, Lakshmi, was sometimes seen riding or accompanied by an Owl.

In Hinduism, Owl symbolizes the humble pursuit of knowledge in the darkness. (It’s a good reminder not to get greedy or egomaniacal along the way.)

The Pueblo linked Owl with Skeleton Man, the god of death and spirit of fertility. The Pawnee saw Owl as a protection spirit, while the Ojibwa saw it as a symbol of death and evil.

Call on Owl to see beyond the veil

Owl can help you explore your subconscious, bring the hidden to light, travel to other planes of consciousness, chat with the spirits of your dearly departed loved ones, and more.

Reveal that which is hidden

Working with Owl medicine can help you gain the ability to see that which is hidden.

It can help you tune into subtle energies and read between the lines to see what’s not being said.

Call on Owl if you’re dealing with any kind of mystery in your life, lost items you need to locate, or if you need help determining whether someone is being honest with you.

The balancing energy of owls and hawks

Owls are nocturnal, and operate by the light of the Moon.

They often have a daytime companion in the form of a hawk, which are mostly active in daylight and are ruled by the Sun.

You can work with a combination of Owl and Hawk medicine to bring harmony and balancing energy into a situation.

If an owl shows up for you, keep your eyes open for hawks, as well (and vice versa).

Learn more about the meaning of Hawk Totem here.

Owl Totem Meditation

Close your eyes. Focus on your breathing until your heart rate steadies and slows. Call to Owl and ask for guidance.


Am I aware of my surroundings?

Where is one place in my life that I should be more observant? 

And then? Listen.

When you’re done, thank Owl for joining you.

Write down any impressions or thoughts you may have. Over the next few days, reflect on your notes and see how they apply to your life right now.

Also, watch for owls and owl imagery (and hawks!) showing up for you in unexpected places!

Explore other animal totems

Learn more about working with animal medicine and spirit animals.