I recently had a reader ask about the dove totem and what it might mean so I have meditated on this bird, studied some of my resources and am now ready to share the lessons we may receive from the animal spirit of dove.
Lore And Legend Surround The Dove
I think before we can talk about the totem of the dove we must first look at how other cultures besides the natives of North America saw this bird. Just about all, if not all, have the dove centered around feminine and motherhood symbols. According to the Greek traditions, a dove brooded the egg that Aphrodite came from. Alexander sought out council from the Oracles of Dodona which was founded by a dove. The Slavs believe that our souls become doves when we die. Christians embrace the dove as a symbol of peace and we could go on.
The Pueblo Indians honored the dove and often wore it’s feathers or used them in prayer sticks. When searching for water, they would listen for the mournful song of the dove knowing that it was an indication that water was near. Water is also considered a maternal connection. The song of the dove signified that watering holes or springs were close as the dove must return at dusk to drink.
When you, yourself, hear the song of the dove aren’t your emotions stirred in some way? Our emotions are our internal waters and respond to the call of this lonesome sounding bird.
Being a ground feeder, the dove reminds us to keep in contact with Mother Earth. We should always be mindful of the creative possibilities from the feminine energies that come from the earth.
I’ve talked before about the significance of the number 2 and feminine energy and it applies to the dove totem, also. Doves lay two eggs which falls in line with the traditional connection of feminine and creative energies.
Mourning Doves Plate by ellenlaurine at Zazzle
The voice of the dove might be compared to a rain song. It invokes new waters of life from its mournful cry. No matter what might be going on in our lives, the dove reminds us that new waters can still flow and new life is still possible.
The Between Times (dusk and dawn) are the best times to reflect on the song of the dove as it relates to you. It is at dawn and dusk that there is a thinning of the veils between the physical and the spiritual, the past and the future.
The dove totem reminds us that it is fine to mourn what has passed but to also awaken to the promise of the future. This bird of prophecy can help you to see what you can give birth to in your own life.
The mourning dove is also sometimes referred to as the turtle dove. I think that is also a significant connection to feminine energy. Many tribal traditions refer to North America as Turtle Island where life began from the waters.