This past Tuesday I was sitting quietly in our butterfly garden. It was a rough week; serious environmental issues seemed to snowball. I was feeling down and exhausted and there was not much gas left in my tank to say the least. I wondered where to begin and what to do next with the many issues that were piling up, but as I turned and looked over my shoulder a shadow seemed to come out of nowhere. It was a Bald Eagle!
It was gliding low, not far above my head. In almost disbelief I watched it slowly circle and soar higher and higher into the white clouds. It seemed just when I needed it most an incredible and most majestic of all birds flew near me, close to me! As if it had a message just for me . I now felt a bit more energy, little more focused and renewed to face the challenges of the day. Nature can do that, and for the folks that remain close to the natural world it plays an important part of their everyday lives
Ever since man first beheld birds flying high in the heavens there has been a special connection to our winged wonders of the skies. Mythological fables regarding birds blend through every culture. Every religion has a parable which includes a spiritual linking with birds, from the many Biblical stories involving the Dove to the timeless unique Native American sacred connections to birds such as the Eagle.
Man has evolved accepting and understanding that the sighting of birds at important times could have significant personal meaning, which may help them receive a message, guide and direct them throughout difficult times or connect with a loved one .
But not everyone gets the message. Maybe because we have begun to lose our feeling of fitting together with the natural world around us or possibly because we have just chosen to ignore the signs that nature expresses to us it seems that less people are feeling that closeness of nature and may be missing that extraordinary experience that only being part of the natural world can give us
However, birders have not lost that special connection with nature. They may not talk much about it or find the need to express it that often, but when the Red-tailed Hawk soars overhead or a Great-Blue Heron stands majestically on the shore they don’t need to say anything . You can just see it in their faces that there is something special happening. There is that unexplainable bonding, an ancient linking with nature that has united them with the spirit of the birds forever.
Many birders have their own “special” bird that has a deep personal meaning to them. When they cross their bird’s path, it can bring back fond or even sad memories of days gone by. They may feel a connection with a loved one or even feel they are being guided on the right path . Birders just don’t walk outside, look at birds and forget about them. There is something that touches them deep in their soul that stays with them forever .
Our connection with nature runs deep. There is something we may not fully understand and have lost touch with , but in our hearts we know we are as much a part of the natural world as the Robin or the Wood Thrush . There is no accepting or denying it. We are part of the environment. The only question is if will learn to hear its message.
If you have a special connection to a bird let me know. You can email me at Greatauk4@gmail.com