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Hawk Symbolism & Meaning

Hawk Symbolism & MeaningUpdated on December 19, 2020 | Published on November 5, 2020
Reviewed by Nathalie Carden, Spiritual Healer

Hawk Symbolism

Hawk symbolism is an ancient concept that indicates a message from the Spirit guides. If Hawk is your spirit animal, optimism and ambition are your greatest qualities. Ancient cultures such as the Native Americans relied upon Hawks for protection and guidance.

Hawks are ruthless creatures and are supposed to be the warriors of truth. They are believed to bring warnings to safeguard you from harm.

Hawk Meaning

Birds are often regarded as spirit guides. They bring messages from the angels, spirits, and magical beings. Hawk symbolism is said to relate to higher consciousness. Hawk’s meaning represents awareness and enlightenment. This bird symbolizes the ability to observe deeper meaning in ordinary everyday experiences.

This spirit animal urges you to free yourself from limiting beliefs and gain a higher perspective so that you can soar high in life. Hawk meaning is a capability to glimpse the bigger picture in life. It wants you to attain greater success.

Hawk Spirit Animal

You can call upon the Hawk spirit animal if you are emotionally hurt and want some guidance. If you are facing a lot of hostility, harassment, or criticism, seek guidance from this spirit animal.

The Hawk spirit animals reside in the realm of bird medicine. Hawk medicine tells us to observe things from a higher perspective.

Hawk as a spirit animal indicates you have to step back and see things from a broader perspective. You have spent a lot of time in calculating the finer details. Now you should focus on the big picture. Observe the situation because the Universe might have an important message for you to learn. Be ready for any hostility and defend yourself bravely.

The Hawk spirit animal suggests accepting things as they are. Do not try to forcibly make things happen for you. Also, do not be troubled even if others criticize you.

When the Hawk spirit animal appears in your life it indicates your courage and leadership abilities. You are a brave person with a strong vision. Problems and challenges do not affect you easily.

You are excellent in giving protection to your family and you easily win the hearts of people because you are wise and caring in nature.

Hawk Symbolism & Meaning
Hawk Symbolism & Meaning

Hawk Totem Animal

Totem animals can bring important messages from the universe. In ancient times, travelers would seek assistance from the hawk totem animal. Hawk acted as a guide to the lost travelers in their journey. You can seek answers to the Hawk animal totem if you feel you are lost in life.

Totem animal hawk, shows the path and leads you in troubled times. Hawk totem also sends other animal totems to guide you. If you are a hawk totem person you have many natural gifts. You are an inborn visionary. It is believed that hawk people are great in counseling and imparting wisdom to others.

Hawk Power Animal

The Hawk power animal suggests seeing things from a bigger perspective. You can seek guidance from the Hawk power animal when you have to undergo a lot of mental activity, for instance, if you are a student or undergoing some training etc. The Hawk power animal suggests you to fully express your potential and soar high in life just like it does.

If you have the hawk as a power animal you already have spiritual awareness. You are sensitive and wise.

Hawk Symbolism –  What does a hawk symbolize

Hawk is a messenger from the spirit realm. Here are the major highlights of hawk symbolism.

  • The Hawk totem animal advises you to trust in your inner abilities and the Higher Power.
  • It urges you to develop your thoughts and incline to deep spirituality to soar high in life.
  • This bird symbolizes improving your observations and perspectives.
  • You must watch for the nudges the universe is giving you. There is an important message for you that you will understand only if you are paying attention.
  • Hawk is an expert predator that kills its prey with intelligence and good timing, you too can learn effectively timing all your actions.  
  • If it is your spirit animal, you might be a clairvoyant or have some natural psychic abilities.
  • Hawk shows wisdom and clarity.
  • This bird also symbolizes seeing things spiritually that only a hand few could manage to do.

Hawk Characteristics

Some interesting characteristics of Hawk animal are –

  • These are birds of prey and belong to the order Falconiformes.
  • 270 species of hawks are found in almost all continents except in Antarctica.
  • The size of Hawks varies depending on the species. The smallest hawk, American Kestrel weighs around 4 ounces only.
  • Hawks have eyesight almost 8 times better than humans! It can locate its prey from a long distance of about 100 feet or more.
  • Hawks have distinctive sharp talons and a big curved bill for cutting and tearing the flesh.
  • Hawks can distinguish colors, unlike many other animals.
  • While hunting, a hawk flies in the air at a speed of 150 miles per hour.
  • Hawks are monogamous and generally mate for life.
  • The female hawk is usually larger than the male, a characteristic called sexual dimorphism.
  • They are opportunistic feeders and eat whatever they can find and hunt on.
  • Hawks are diurnal animals although there is a nocturnal species of the subfamily Chordeilinae called the nighthawk.
  • This bird flies high because in higher altitude they do not need to flap their wings but simply glide on. This saves energy. The hawks we see soaring high, circles in pockets of warm air. They glide in this warm air to reach their destination.
  • The long-tailed Hawk of Africa has a particular tactic of killing its prey by breaking the neck of the animal.
  • Gray Hawk of Central America mostly feeds on lizards from the open areas.
  • Hawks are migratory birds. The migrants from the south perform strong and rapid flight with their wings towards the south.
  • Many hawks remain all year in the same breeding area. Others would leave their territories in winter and return to it again. Often it builds nests on electric and telephones poles.
  • The male Sparrow Hawk loses weight during the feeding season to feed his mate, the female hawk before she lays eggs. The young hawks would stay in their nests with their mother and the father would bring an assortment of meat to feed them.
  • The common hawks in the United States are – Broad-winged Hawk, Great Black Hawk, Cooper’s Hawk, Crane Hawk, Ferruginous Hawk, Gray Hawk, Roadside Hawk, Sharp-Shinned Hawk, Short-tailed Hawk, Red-Shouldered Hawk, Red-Tailed Hawk, White-tailed Hawk and Zone Tailed Hawk.

Hawk Native American Symbolism

The Native Americans considered Hawks as guardians and protectors. They believed Hawks brought messages from their ancestors. The chiefs of the clans read the spiritual messages from falcons and hawks.

According to the Native American symbolism, Hawks are warriors of truth and denote honesty and clarity. Crying hawks are messengers of warnings. If it dive towards you, it signifies an upcoming challenge.

The Native Americans considered red-tailed Hawks to be a messenger that tells you to clear your mind because a miracle is on the way. Hawks could also bring negative messages and warnings. Nevertheless, Native Americans considered animal spirit guides with respect.

Hawk Symbolism in Christianity

There are biblical references for hawks. Mostly, hawks have been considered as symbols of intuition, wisdom, clarity and truth. The Christians considered hawks bearing messages from God. Hawk was considered a symbol of wisdom. The wild hawk is a symbol of a materialistic soul loaded with disbelief and sins. While a tamed hawk is a soul that has returned to Christianity by accepting the virtues and beliefs.

We find the mention of hawks in the book of Job of the Old Testament. God asks Job (Job 39:26): “Does the hawk fly by your wisdom, and spread its wings towards the south?” The inherent meaning of the verse implies the laws of nature. Hawks are migratory birds and it is their natural instinct to feel the natural laws.

In the Old Testament hawk is mentioned as an unclean animal. “It is an unclean bird.” (Leviticus 11:16; Deuteronomy 14:15)

Hawk Celtic Symbolism

The Celts considered hawk as a messenger from the spirit guides. Hawks alert you to stay prepared for an upcoming challenge. It urges you to keep your eyes open so that you can act fast if you face such a situation. If they found a hawk circling it was believed to signify either victory or death. The Celtics considered hawk as a symbol for Bran, their god.

Hawk Spiritual Meaning

The spiritual meanings assigned to hawks are:

  • Messengers of the spirit guides that bring to us a spiritual message
  • Symbolizes clarity and spiritual awareness
  • Asks you to be more focused in life
  • Understand the benefits of proper timing and implement it in life
  • Leadership and guidance
  • Mental strength and courage

Seeing a Hawk Meaning (what does it mean when you see a hawk?)

Hawk can appear in your life for a different reason than the others. Here are some meanings ascertained when you see a hawk circling you.

Hawks watch the environment from a height. It scans for food and threats from a distance. Therefore, if a hawk is frequently showing up in your life, it is suggesting you to raise your observation skills. Try to see things from a higher perspective.

It is urging you to use your intuition before making important decisions.

Hawks are messengers from the Spirit realm. Therefore, seeing a hawk also means there is some message for you from the spirit guides. Stay open and receptive to receive the message. The message could come to you when you are quietly reflecting your thoughts or it can come in the dreams. Or a person can give you the message unintentionally.

Just pay attention to everything that is happening in your life. Stay focused.

Hawks also appear when you need some guidance from your spirit guide. Hawk symbolizes focus, determination and courage.

If you see hawks all the time it means you have to learn the lessons from life.

Seeing Hawk in Dreams

Hawk is an intelligent bird and has excellent eyesight. Hawks showing in your dream means you are sharper than your competitors and assess situations before taking an action. Just like a hawk you have the eye on the prize. It could be a career or business goal that you are seeking and you will not stop until you achieve it. You must focus on the tasks at hand.

If a Hawk soars in your dreams means it is urging you to stay alert. Opportunities are coming your way but you must be prepared and alert to grab and make the most use of them.

Seeing a hawk in dreams assures that you analyze situations correctly. If a hawk swoops in your dream it means you would get recognition and fame.

In the dream, if the hawk is swooping down on its prey it means you have to observe someone else making a rash decision.

But if in your dream you kill a hawk it is a good omen for you. It means you will defeat someone dangerous and be saved from danger.

In the dream, if you see a hawk sitting on a branch and watching you, it symbolizes a long journey. If you are sick while dreaming this, it means a speedy recovery is on the way.

Seeing a hawk in a dream with a snake in its claws indicates success in business or career.

If a hawk attacks you in a dream it indicates a threat from people of authority. Maybe your boss or parents want to control you.

Hawk in Mythology and Folklore

Norse mythology symbolizes hawks as messengers of Gods. They brought messages from God. Also, they were considered as death omens. They have been represented as pets of the royals that signaled its master’s family of his arrival from war or long journeys.

In Hindu mythology, we find a hawk named Jatayu who tries to protect goddess Sita from the demon king Ravana. When Lord Rama comes to the scene in search of his wife, Jatayu hawk informs that Sita had been kidnapped by Ravana. So, he plays the role of a protector and messenger in Ramayana.

The Greeks represented hawks in their mythology as the Greek God Apollo’s messengers.

Hawk in Astrology and Zodiacs

The Native Americans assign the Red-Tailed Hawk birth sign to people who are born between 21st March and 19th April. Those who are born under this sign are bold and persistent towards their goals. They are inborn leaders and problem-solvers.

Red-Tailed Hawk Meaning

Red-Tailed Hawks are prominent in North America. They are such a common sight that even after seeing these creatures we might forget the Red-Tailed Hawk symbolism.

The Red-Tailed Hawks are considered as the protectors of Mother Earth. The feathers of this hawk have a strong connection to the first chakra or the root chakra in humans.

The first chakra signifies our connection to the world – family, peers and community in general. The red color of the hawk feathers signifies healing and belongingness in the world.

Red is the color of passion. The red-tailed hawk feathers signify a connection to the Higher Power. They bring messages from Gods and spirit guides.

Occurrences of this bird in your life indicate that your prayers will be answered soon. You have many gifts which you are not aware of. The bright red tail feathers of the bird remind you of your gifts.

Hawk Feather Meaning

Have you recently seen a Hawk feather around and wondering if there is a spiritual meaning to it? Well, you are in luck! As we are here to answer your question.

Finding a Hawk feather indicates you must let go of control. Surrender to the higher power and stay open to the nudges from the universe. Help will come in the form of advice from a friend or a loved one. Pay attention to any advice that comes your way. Learning to communicate clearly for the Hawk feather is urging you to have clear communication with the people around you.

Hawk feather also urges you to remember your dreams. The Universe might send you a vital message in your dreams. You can start a dream diary!

Take notice of every single thing happening in your life. Look for signs. Listen to your intuition.

Also, feathers of the animal hawk can bring significant messages to you. It could be a sign from the Universe. Hawk feather can be symbolic that your prayers are to be answered soon.

Hawk Tattoo Meaning

Like eagles and vultures, tattoos of hawks are also quite popular. Hawk is a fantastic bird, strong, courageous and witty. In some cultures, hawks are considered symbols of freedom and courage while some cultures consider it as an evil bird that preys on the weaker beings. Hawk spirit animals bring different emotions in different people. Rather than following the fashion, it’s better you understand what hawk means to you before opting for a tattoo.

The hawk represents the Eye of Horus, the ancient sky God of Egypt. After it was depicted in the movie, ‘Now You See Me’ Hawk tattoos became trendy!

Usually a Hawk represents power and a Hawk tattoo is a symbol of masculinity, fighting spirit and strength. Yes, it’s a bit showing off your courage and vigor to the world.

You must have got an impression of this bird from this article. If you are amazed by the qualities of the Hawk spirit animal you can share the vision with your tattoo artist. A Hawk tattoo is a reminder to observe things and glimpse the bigger picture in life. It also represents courage, intelligence, promptness and focus.

Hawk tattoo holds different meanings to different people. You just think what it is for you that Hawk Symbolism stands for. Go with vibrant colors or a large black bird tattoo on your entire chest.

Hawk Quotes

Based on the Hawk Symbolism here are 10 quotes for you. Enjoy!

1. “He is a bird of leisure and seems always at his ease. How beautiful and majestic are his movements!”

--John Burroughs
“He is a bird of leisure and seems always at his ease. How beautiful and majestic are his movements!” – John Burroughs

2. “In this world of ours, the sparrow must live like a hawk if he is to fly at all.”

--Hayao Miyazaki
“In this world of ours, the sparrow must live like a hawk if he is to fly at all.” – Hayao Miyazaki

3. “You cannot friend a hawk, they said, unless you are a hawk yourself, alone and only a sojourner in the land, without friends or the need of them.”

--Stephen King
“You cannot friend a hawk, they said, unless you are a hawk yourself, alone and only a sojourner in the land, without friends or the need of them.” – Stephen King

4. “The hawk was everything I wanted to be: solitary, self-possessed, free from grief, and numb to the hurts of human life.” 

--Helen Macdonald
“The hawk was everything I wanted to be: solitary, self-possessed, free from grief, and numb to the hurts of human life.” – Helen Macdonald

5. “He who makes himself a dove is eaten by the hawk.”

— Italian proverb
“He who makes himself a dove is eaten by the hawk.” – Italian Proverb

6. “The wild hawk stood with the down on his beak and stared with his foot on the prey.”

--Lord Alfred Tennyson
“The wild hawk stood with the down on his beak and stared with his foot on the prey.” – Lord Alfred Tennyson

7. “Dost thou love hawking? Thou hast hawks will soar Above the morning lark.”

--William Shakespeare
“Dost thou love hawking? Thou hast hawks will soar Above the morning lark.” – William Shakespeare

8. “Anyone who has ever stopped to watch a hawk in flight will know that this is one of the natural world’s most elegant phenomena.”

--John Burnside
“Anyone who has ever stopped to watch a hawk in flight will know that this is one of the natural world’s most elegant phenomena.” – John Burnside

9. “Hunting hawks did not belong in cages, no matter how much a man coveted their grace, no matter how golden the bars. They were far more beautiful soaring free. Heartbreakingly beautiful.”

--Lois McMaster Bujold
“Hunting hawks did not belong in cages, no matter how much a man coveted their grace, no matter how golden the bars. They were far more beautiful soaring free. Heartbreakingly beautiful.” – Lois McMaster Bujold

10. “In many traditions, hawks are sacred: Apollo’s messengers for the Greeks, sun symbols for the ancient Egyptians and, in the case of the Lakota Sioux, embodiments of clear vision, speed and single-minded dedication.”

--John Burnside
“In many traditions, hawks are sacred: Apollo’s messengers for the Greeks, sun symbols for the ancient Egyptians and, in the case of the Lakota Sioux, embodiments of clear vision, speed and single-minded dedication.” – John Burnside
Watch this video about Hawk Spirit Animal

Closing Thoughts

Hawk symbolism has been a fascinating topic in the various cultures of the world. It is considered as a messenger from the spirit world. Hawk animal spirit guide is regarded as a symbol of courage and intellect. Hawk is also mentioned in mythology and fables. You can consider it as a guide or protector and learn from it. If you are someone who does not believe in totem animals in real life, we hope this article could at least entertain you and we appreciate you for reading this.