Mockingbird Symbolism & Meaning
Are you struggling with self-expression? Do you want to connect with your muse? Mockingbird as a Spirit, Totem, and Power Animal can Help! Mockingbird teaches you how discover your voice. Delve deeply in Mockingbird symbolism and meaning to find out how this animal spirit guide can inspire, motivate, and animate you!
Mockingbird Table of Contents
- Mockingbird Symbolism & Meaning
- Spirit Animal
- Totem Animal
- Power Animal
- Native American Symbolism
- Mockingbird Dreams
- Back to all Birds
- Back to all Spirit Animal Meanings
Mockingbird Symbolism & Meaning
in the green field
were spinning and tossing
the white ribbons
of their songs
into the air.
I had nothing
better to do
– Mary Oliver
While there are about 30 species of Mockingbird, the one most often spoken about is the Northern Mockingbird. The Latin term for this creature has strong ties to Mockingbird symbolism and meaning, translating as ‘many-tongued mimic”. They are truly the virtuoso of verbal imitation in the world of Animal Spirits.
What many may not realize is that Mockingbirds do not simply copy the song of other feathered friends. They can also copy other sounds like that of a dog’s bark or a cat’s meow. The reason for their song seems to be two-fold. First, they attract specific other birds into their nesting range. Second, just the opposite, they use a frightening call to keep certain birds away.
Mockingbirds are ranked among other intelligent birds like Ravens and Magpies. They grow to be about 10” tall with a tail that dances back and forth when they get excited. And imitation is not their only strong suit. Mockingbirds are grey and have long legs so they can easily look through foliage. That means they hide pretty well, unlike a Robin.
In the wild we see Mockingbird safeguarding their family with fierceness. They are nearly as vicious as Blue Jays in this behavior. This provides the Mockingbird with the symbolism of safety, family unity, and firm boundaries.
We cannot talk about Mockingbird meanings without touching briefly on the famous book, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” by Harper Lee. In this tome, the death of a Mockingbird is a representation of the death of innocence, specifically by coming into contact with evil. The story implies that killing a Mockingbird is a sin because the only thing they do is sing, making beautiful music.
Some of the key characteristics and attributes of Mockingbird Animal Spirit include inventiveness, keen-mindedness, happiness, playfulness, protection, thankfulness, security and most of all communication.
As an interesting historical aside, the concept of species transmutation may have well been inspired by the Mockingbird. When Charles Darwin traveled to the Galapagos Islands in 1835, he stumbled on an interesting observation. Mockingbirds differed slightly from island to island while also looking a lot like Mockingbirds in South America. His reflective writings indicate that this observation undermined the doctrine of species stability. If a species is not immutable, we begin moving into evolutionary thinking.
Mockingbird Spirit Animal
The Mockingbird Spirit Animal carries several messages on its wings. Perhaps the most important one is that of finding your voice and the music that inspires your soul. Your “song” has power – the vibration in your words ring out with intent. There is no need to keep this powerful energy within. Sing! Along the same lines, you should probably take some time to think about your interactions with others. Do they understand you fully? If not, let Mockingbird help.
Another lesson offered by Mockingbird is the usefulness of imitation. We are told that imitation is a form of flattery, which is true. In some instances, it is far more than just that. Children imitate the behaviors of their parents, which helps teach safety, social strictures, respectfulness and, of course, language. In this, Mockingbird asks you two questions.
First, are you being a good role model for others (if you have ever used swear words in front of a quick-witted child you understand why)? Secondly, are you modeling those behaviors you see in others that you respect? Say you have always admired your friend’s knack for flexibility. How can you “imitate” that (so to speak) in your life? Adopt the most positive traits from those around you, leaving the negatives behind.
Sometimes Mockingbird appears to people who are having their proverbial nests attacked in some way. Perhaps gossip is afoot or actions spurred by jealousy. No matter the exact cause, Mockingbird gives you the fortitude to protect your own and your sacred space. If someone comes in with attitudes and arguments, you have the right (and responsibility) to ask them to leave. This is difficult for many people, but Mockingbird has the courage you need.
Finally, Mockingbird teaches us how to be curious and learn from experience. Every sound a Mockingbird sings comes from discovery. They hear it, seek it out carefully and then begin replicating that through practice. Life lessons are like that too. You have the knowledge, but have to put it into practice for personal progress.
Mockingbird Totem Animal
Those born with a Mockingbird Totem Animal are highly talented people. In a crowd, you might not even notice them physically because they sort of blend it. But should they shout-out, you know it!
If this is your birth totem, you easily learn from situations and move on. It’s not in your mindset to hold on to those things or people that do you no good. You will take what you learned from those moments, focusing on a fresh future.
The people in your life can’t really fool you. Mockingbird Totem has a panache for keeping it real. You know their “song” and recognize its intent. Those with the right notes are people with whom you socialize and harmonize. Others become more like background noise. You will rarely be disrespectful, but how much you actually “hear” and respond to depends heavily on your instincts. Mockingbird seeks on-going harmony in their life’s circle.
When you walk with Mockingbird, there is an underlying fearlessness in your soul. No one dares to become a predator toward you or those you love. If they do, they’d better be ready for a serious toe-to-toe. This warrior spirit also applies to people who are unable to defend themselves or who find themselves caught in another’s web of deception without allies.
As one might imagine those with a Mockingbird Totem Animal love music and may even gravitate toward hobbies or careers that involve it (especially singing). You know there is something wrong with a Mockingbird friend when they stop humming to themselves for an extended amount of time.
The only real limitation among Mockingbirds is that they’re not wholly creative in and of themselves. Instead, they become the impersonator’s on life’s stage. Mockingbird needs ideas and actions for others from which to choose for self-definition.
Mockingbird Power Animal
There are specific goals for which you can call upon Mockingbird Power Animal for aid:
- Finding and speaking your truth.
- Understanding the music of your soul.
- Learning a new language (or talent).
- Becoming a spokesperson or public speaker.
- Developing self-confidence for defending your convictions.
- Expanding your knowledge through experience.
- Inspiring honesty in others.
- Expressing wisdom with words others easily understand.
- Uncovering true intentions.
Native American Mockingbird Symbolic Meanings
Native American culture features Mockingbird in both folklore and myths. Both the Pueblo and Hopi have Mockingbird as part of creation, teaching humans how to speak. Southeastern tribes credit Mockingbird with intelligence. Among the Shasta, this creature guards the dead, and the Maricopa hold Mockingbird as a Medicine Animal who imparts special powers. And thanks to this bird’s communication skills the Pima stories characterize Mockingbird as a diplomat and peace-maker.
The following is the Mayan tale of “How Mockingbird Became the Best Singer.” Mother Mockingbird was very young, and her family had little, forcing her to wear grungy feathers. Even so, Mockingbird always was a good singer. Affording lessons, however, was another matter altogether.
One day she began working for a wealthy family of Cardinals. During her employ, a renown singing teacher came into the area. Father Cardinal wanted his daughter to become an excellent singer, but she laughed at the idea feeling she needed no such help. Her father was determined and finally offered her enough gifts to consent.
The daughter Cardinal went into the woods with her teacher. Mockingbird followed silently behind, listening. This went on for weeks until the professor got wholly frustrated with the daughter’s lack of interest or progress. Fearing the father Cardinal’s reaction, he flew away leaving the whole mess behind him.
There came a day when father Cardinal wanted his daughter to perform for friends. She, of course, was terrified of telling her family she hadn’t learned even one song. She had, however, overheard Mockingbird singing to herself during chores and decided to ask for help. Mockingbird would hide in a tree trunk singing while the daughter pretended the song for her audience.
Father Cardinal knew of the ruse, having seen Mockingbird sneak into the tree before the concert. After the applause quieted, father Cardinal called for Mockingbird to come out. The tiny grey bird came out nervously, lead to a perch by the father, Cardinal. He proceeded to tell everyone the truth and called upon Mockingbird to sing once more. Her song was so beautiful that all her descendants would forever have a lovely singing voice while the Cardinal never would. It seems that hard work, dedication and hope truly paid off for Mockingbird.
A singing Mockingbird in your dreams represents a positive outcome so long as you trust your intuition and not the advice of well-intentioned friends.
Mockingbirds, in general, stand for individuality and following your own song.
A Mockingbird flying angrily toward you means that you have become arrogant, disrespectful or cocky and overstepped in some way. Rein yourself in.
Dreaming of a quiet Mockingbird symbolizes positive self-images that need no external approval.
When a Mockingbird nests away from you in another’s yard or building it represents taking credit for someone else’s work and efforts.
Mockingbird tweeting from behind bushes or leaves implies you are nervous about social situations, being uncertain about the signals you’re getting.
Mockingbird Symbolic Meanings Key
- Family Unity