Woodpecker is not only a medicine someone can carry, it is a
Native American birth totem too. A WoodPecker (June 21 - July 21) birth totem
is not the same thing as a spiritual totem or having a particular animal as a
spirit guide. Those relationships are purely spiritual in nature. If WoodPecker
is your birth totem, the animal acts as a teacher along your path specifically
for spiritual understanding and growth. In other words, it is what you came
here to learn!
There are about 180 species of woodpeckers in the world.
Most spend their entire lives in trees. Woodpeckers are climbers. They climb by
propping their stiff pointed tail feathers against a support while shifting its
leg hold. With its body close to the trunk or branch and its head bobbing, the
bird hitches upwards, back down spiraling and nimbly darts sideways at
incredible speeds. Because of their speed predators have difficulty catching
Their flight patterns are unique. Woodpeckers fly up, coast
down then fly upwards again. Those with this totem often find that their path
in life will not always conform to society's standards and that their personal
unique rhythm needs to be honored. Woodpeckers teach us to honor our personal
truth and move through life with perseverance and inner strength. By staying
grounded in our pursuits our goals can be obtained.
Woodpeckers are opportunists. They know when to fly out from
a perch to catch insects in the air or on the ground. Their barbed tongues and
strong chiseled beaks symbolize life lessons associated with discernment and
proper use of speech for those with this totem.
In spring the loud calls of woodpeckers often augmented by
drumming on hollow wood are the sounds of males holding territories.
Woodpeckers defend their territory aggressively. Those with this medicine need
to be in control of their personal environment and will not tolerate others
trying to change it. Although personal space is very important for woodpecker
medicine people, control issues can sometimes be a problem and flexibility
needs to be learned.
The woodpecker is known as the Earths drummer. Drumming is
the heartbeat of mother earth and is associated with shamanism and the ability
to move into other dimensions at will. For those with this totem the woodpecker
represents self discovery. As they peck into and through trees and dead wood,
hidden layers of ones psyche are revealed. Those with this medicine are good
analysts and have strong mental capabilities. They make excellent psychiatrists
and psychologists. Woodpeckers are active birds so caution is advised to
maintain balance when reviewing any situation or issue. Too much analyzing can
result in procrastination.
The woodpecker is able to find food hidden under layers of
bark and wood and teaches us to dig deeply to find truth and deceptions.
Woodpecker energy is associated with prophecy and the ability to see deeper
than surface lies.
Woodpecker speaks of not being hard-headed because they are
able to use their beak to peck at trees. Woodpecker is telling us that even if
something seems difficult to do, not to give up. To do what works, even if it
is unconventional. To set your own pace, your own rhythm.
People born under the woodpecker sign need safety and
security and are often wary because of their extreme sensitivity to their
This totem is the power of rhythm and determination;
stimulates new rhythms.
Woodpecker folks are able to "ride the flow of
life" and to receive in silence. They are gentle, sensitive and dreamy
folks who tend to both absorb and reflect things around them. They are here to
learn more independence and stability.
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