Art, Body & Soul
Goose Animal Totem

Goose Animal Totem

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Are you thinking you should be on a quest?  If a goose shows up, it’s Spirit’s way of saying yes.

As I was asking myself some questions this morning, a large gaggle (flock) of at least 20 flew noisily and directly from East to West, giving me a very direct and specific answer.

Geese are about communication, about migrating from one place to another for the sake of survival and abundance, about fidelity and mating for life, about equal partnership in raising children, about using one’s energy in community to make the progress of all more efficient and companionable.  Geese protect one another, and take turns doing that so that they all have the chance to take care of themselves, too.  They are valiant, bold, territorial, and like tradition – a family will return year after year to the same place to raise children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and so forth.  They fight to the death to maintain that territory, and will face even the most impressive and terrifying foes to do so.  A goose leaves an impressive amount of feces around, which is very slippery for people to walk through.  Watch your step when you are around a grazing gaggle!  The goose has excellent vision.  If one goose or many show up in your life, expect your physical and spiritual vision to improve.  Geese use their vision to protect themselves, their community, and to find sustenance and a good place to live.

A heads-up:  when geese show up in your life, take action on that quest, whatever it is.  One of the most heart-wrenching things I ever observed was a goose frozen into a lake, it’s mate circling it, honking, trying to get it unstuck.  Don’t wait too long to do whatever it is you need to do, especially if it involves migration.  That goose died.  It’s mate loved it so much that it stayed with it for days after it had passed, mourning it, calling it to come back to life.  The other geese in the gaggle had waited reluctantly in the beginning, but left when she died.  That means they left the mate behind, something they did not want to do, but which they had to do for their own survival.  I don’t know what happened to the mate, but his migration without his family was surely difficult if not impossible.  He did leave the spot eventually, but we had many storms shortly after.  The early storms were responsible for killing his mate – the gaggle had been sleeping on the lake, probably for protection, and were caught in a cold snap which froze the lake.  The ice was only thick enough for a goose to walk on, not a young woman.  I was tremendously upset that I couldn’t go do something to help the goose.  But if I had, I would have fallen through and frozen to death, too.  Horrible.

Canada Goose flying West over the snow (Photo by Chuck Szmurlo)

Moral of the story: act on the signs you get while you can – don’t get frozen in!  Fly!

Ted Andrews says in Animal Speak that the goose also represents breaking free from childhood restraints and becoming your own person, speaking your own mind, since goslings (baby geese) are very quiet at first and then gain independence.  Which makes perfect sense, since they need to hide from predators as babies!  But then, as they move about and gain mobility and the ability to fly, they speak their minds and move independently, while still being very much a part of a family.

Morning thoughts by Peacock & Paisley.

For another goose guidance experience, read

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8 Responses to Goose Animal Totem

  1. Thank you for your beautiful and insightful post. I am wanting to learn the meanings of the directions a bird flys. Do you know what it means when they fly north, slightly west direction?

    Thank you again…


  2. I started seeing totems when I had become frustrated by the vague answers to prayer. I told God “look…I’m no good with hints. I don’t do hinting so send me a sign that I can understand or your wasting your time with me”. It was then that I started seeing the Hawk. The first time was when I had a house to rent out. I was considering some tenants with shaky references. While I was in a shopping center I noticed a hawk circling directly over my head for 10 minutes. I took this as a sign that the renters would be ok. It was a disaster. I told Spirit “what the heck did that mean?”. In the weeks that followed I started seeing hawks like never before. While driving hawks landed on prey 3 times on the side of the road in front of my car. A dead hawk in the middle of the road when I was driving to buy a new car. I finally got the connection. When I was contimplating an important desicion…a hawk would appear at the exact instant that I was thinking about it. I was helping a female friend move some furniture and thought….”maybe I should ask her out”. At that exact moment a hawk landed on pray on the side of the road just as I passed it. I did not ask her out and we’re still friends. aware. Falcon..go for it. Falcon keeping a hawk at bay? I went for it..(see above post)

    • I hope things work out well for you asap, Randy!

      I love your experience with learning about signs; it’s not always easy — good for you working out the details with Spirit!

      Is it possible that flying North for a while might be good for you?

  3. My wife and I are having the worst time in our marriage. I left my life up north to live with her in her house 2 years ago. Since then our sex has stopped and she has had to go on insulin. I feel that since moving here my life has stopped. She is really struggling with her diabetes and trying to adjust to the rigorous eating schedules it requires. She has two children who are adults that cause her nothing but challenges and live off the money that she or their father gives them. I have only contributed about 1/3 of the money it takes to run this household since my business has not taken off. I still do most of my work,involving established clients, up north.Today as I was talking to Spirit and asking to die a lone white goose flew over our house heading north.
    I’m often visited by bird totems during times of decision making.
    On our first date we were sitting in a park across from her house and a falcon landed atop a light pole directly in front and below us and sat there for 2 hours as a hawk flew from tree to tree around the falcon. We have not seen a falcon here since.

  4. Wild Geese

    You do not have to be good.
    You do not have to walk on your knees
    for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
    You only have to let the soft animal of your body
    love what it loves.
    Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
    Meanwhile the world goes on.
    Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
    are moving across the landscapes,
    over the prairies and the deep trees,
    the mountains and the rivers.
    Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
    are heading home again.
    Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
    the world offers itself to your imagination,
    calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting–
    over and over announcing your place
    in the family of things.

    © Mary Oliver. Online Source

  5. Touching post. I have always been called to sound of geese honking. Usually I am able to watch their flight happen and my spirit soars in the process. Have you read the “Goose Story” it talks about the habits of Geese. One characteristic is that when a goose is sick or dying, another goose will stay with it until it dies or gets better. Only then will the goose head off to find their flock. How cool is that.

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