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Reading Signs and Omens

Thank you for being here with me today, I hope you had a lovely full moon. I am really feeling energized these days. I have a few new irons in the fire that I’m working on, I have a wonderful partner who is helping me refine and realize my vision, Dani, the powerhouse witch of Pennsylvania. I am feeling really good about the direction things are headed. And I’m getting messages from witches we’ve heard from in the past with some updates about their situations and by and large, they’re doing really well. The overall message I keep seeing is that they’re getting some fantastic results from all their work, and I just couldn’t be happier or more proud of the magick and the changes they are creating in their lives. This is the dream.

Now today, we are going to talk about reading signs, omens, and portents. And I will start off by saying that this will not be an exhaustive list, because there’s no way to cover every sign from the universe, from ancestors, from guides, and so on because so many of the things that may appear to us as signs are going to be very specific to us as individuals, and therefore won’t be especially meaningful to anyone else. But that’s what makes them signs, and those are often the ones we can put the most stock into.

 

But before we go there, let’s talk about some of the more common omens we might come across. Repeating numbers are a sign that we may see an awful lot, sometimes they’re called Angel Numbers, you know, 1111, 444, 777, etc. And there are about a grillion little memes and graphics telling us what specific angel numbers mean, but not everyone is a professional numerologist. So even if you aren’t quite sure what specific numbers may indicate, if you’re seeing the same repeating numbers over and over again, you can at least be assured that your guides, your guardian angels, the Universe, however you want to think of it, is trying to get your attention in some kind of way. Basically, pay attention when this happens. What were you thinking of right when you noticed the numbers? Was it something that’s been weighing on your mind recently? Did someone call or text you right before or right afterward? 

 

Now, we do need to be aware that sometimes, we’re seeing repeating numbers a lot because we are always looking at our goddamn phones. I personally see 1111 a LOT. But that’s because I take my lunch hour right around 11, 11:30 in the morning, so I naturally start looking at the clock right around that time. So for that number to carry any more significance for me personally, it’s going to have to appear somewhere else. I usually don’t give a ton of weight to repeating numbers on my phone’s clock. Again, because I’m looking at it all the time. But, if I’m seeing these numbers on license plates, if they’re on the serial numbers on cash that I receive in change, if they’re on like, my order number at a restaurant or an address or a receipt, or something like that, then I’ll give it a lot more attention.

 

So again, you don’t have to know the meanings of the numbers to gain insight from them or to interpret them as a sign, but if you’re into that, the general numerological consensus for the meaning of certain repeating numbers is as follows: 

 

Repeating ones are a call to action, essentially. The universe is telling you to move on whatever it is you’re mulling over, or whatever opportunity you’ve been considering or that may arise shortly. 222 is a sign that whatever you’ve been trying to create, whatever it is you’re putting into motion, whatever seed you’ve planted is growing roots and is going to pay off. Don’t quit now, is essentially the takeaway.

 

Threes kind of mean like, whatever is going to happen, is going to happen. Not in a fatalistic, doom and gloom sort of way, but essentially threes are just saying, you’ve done what you can, you’ve done your part, let the universe take it from here. Repeating fours are like a hug from your guides. It’s a reminder that you’re not alone, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, and you don’t have to do everything on your own.

 

555 is interpreted as sort of like Dorothy’s tornado in the Wizard of Oz. You’re going to be thrown around a little bit, there’s going to be some turbulence, but hold on tight and keep your eyes fixed on the goal, and you’ll end up somewhere beautiful and unexpected. Sixes are a little bit of a warning. Not scary, satanic, demonic, 666 number of the beast bullshit, just a reminder to stay true to yourself, to your ethics. Don’t get caught up in false ideas of what’s important. Don’t lose yourself trying to become someone else or trying to attain something that isn’t really going to serve you in the end.

 

And sevens of course are a message of good fortune. You may not even realize it yet, but things are headed in the right direction, you’re making the right moves, you’re on the correct path, the decisions and choices you’re making are in line with your greater purpose. Eights are one we don’t see often. They tend to appear to us when everything is going perfectly and nothing can be improved. That’s probably why we don’t see it more often, actually. But it is also a little heads up that, hey, things are reaching a conclusion here. It’s time to figure out what’s next. 

 

999 is the number of new beginnings, something brand new is brewing and will present itself shortly. This also logically denotes that something else has just ended though, so we can also read it as a sign that whatever that was, whatever door has just closed, whatever chapter has just ended, that wasn’t the end of the story. And then zeroes are just a reminder of the wisdom of the universe, the wholeness of every living thing that exists now or has existed. We are part of something much larger than we can comprehend.

 

And of course, common number combinations have their own meanings, and I don’t really have time to get into allll of that, but it is really fascinating. I could actually, I think I will, I’m going to do a numerology episode. Gonna make a quick note to myself here.

 

Ok, so what about other signs like animals? This is a very common one across cultures, seeing animals, depending on what the animal is, is very significant for people. And we will go through some of the more common correspondences here in a minute, but these aren’t a hard and fast rule. We have the example of course of the witch Ithil who wrote in, and who still writes in from time to time, who was given a sign in the form of an owl. She recognized this owl as a messenger from her mother who is on the other side of the veil, and she has gone on to cultivate a very rich, very close relationship with her mom. So, like so many other concepts in witchcraft, the guidelines and general rules only go so far. If you personally have a connection with a certain animal that does not fit the accepted explanations, your personal connection always supersedes those correlations. Always.

 

So let’s start with the owl. Owls and crows are commonly interpreted as messengers (obviously, like that’s the whole point of this episode) and so anytime you see one, especially in a place you wouldn’t expect to, stop and ask yourself what intuitive messages you are receiving. Owls and crows are also connected to the afterlife, so specifically, you may be receiving a message from a departed loved one. And it can’t be left unsaid that in some cultures, a lot of cultures actually, that owls and crows are warnings.

 

And actually, quick detour, I want to talk a little about zodiac correspondences with animals and symbols as well. I meant to add this to my notes but I didn’t and I want to get this out before it slips my mind. So if you’re going about your daily business and an image or picture of a lion catches your attention for some reason, this may be a signal to check in on a certain important Leo in your life. Likewise with a bull, call your favorite Taurus, a ram, check on your Aries (although an Aries would never admit to needing to be checked on). Sometimes the universe really can be that obvious. Now, if you’re watching the Lion King with your grandkids, you’re obviously going to see some lions, so you know, be rational about things, but again, if you’re seeing these in places you wouldn’t expect, OR if they just snag your attention in a strange way, just be ready to listen. 

 

Back to the main point. We can also receive messages from deities in our lives by observing these animal totems as well. I had a witch tell me the most incredible account of how her son’s life was very literally saved by the sudden and unexpected appearance of a bear. Now , in her son’s case it was an actual, live bear, but that isn’t usually the case. Now bears symbolize a lot of things on their own, such as power, maternal protection, endurance, spiritual healing, etc, but they’re also the patron animal of the goddesses Artemis and Artio, with whom this witch felt a strong connection anyway. So, not all of us may experience such a dramatic intervention, but we may certainly receive messages from deities that we have connections to in this way. That’s another reason why it’s so important to really research deities and entities that you’re interested in working with; you want to be able to recognize the signs they send you.

 

Ok, I want to run through a few more common animal symbols before we move on. Wolves are a very common omen. They’re such a powerful animal and they will often appear to give us a message of loyalty, of strength, shamanic work, moon magic, and protection of self and family. Rabbits are a message of alertness. They will often warn us to keep our eyes and ears open to danger. Not just physical danger, although it can be, but also in our daily lives, at work, in relationships, whatever. An unexpected rabbit may pop up to give you a message to just pay attention to what’s going on there. Don’t ignore your intuition or any warning signals you’re receiving. 

 

Horses will appear to tell us that we’re being too tame, too domesticated, too reserved. Horses appear with messages of freedom, wildness, energy, youth. They’re also good omens for traveling, especially sudden, spontaneous trips. Foxes are an interesting one, to me, they can either symbolize the need for cunning, for being a little bit sneaky, for being intellectually nimble, or they can indicate that someone is trying to get one over on you. I kind of liken them to the seven of swords in tarot. So, I mean listen to your gut when it comes to all of these symbols, but really listen to your gut when foxes start popping up.

 

Ringing in the ears is angels, guides, however you think of them. If your ears are ringing and there’s no obvious reason for it, like you haven’t heard a loud noise or something that’s caused it, your guides are screaming for your attention. If you can’t possibly stop right then and meditate on it for a moment to figure out what they’re saying, definitely make time as soon as you can to ask for information. If your ears ring, there’s a high pitched tone out of nowhere, your guides need to talk to you.

 

I find that when ancestors or departed loved ones are trying to communicate, there’s a variety of ways that they’ll make themselves known. Smelling a certain perfume or cologne is actually indicative that they’re physically near you, in spirit, so that’s always a really powerful one. But they can also communicate in other ways, and in my experience, the most obvious one is to appear to you in your dreams. If you’re being visited in your dreams by someone who has died, they’re here to tell you something. 

 

Finding random keys can be a pretty significant sign from the universe, either in real life or in dreams. In general keys symbolize power; for example we see powerful men, religious leaders and royalty, holding keys in ancient artwork to signify this. But they’re also symbolic of hidden knowledge, wisdom that will require some effort to unlock. They can signify secrets and of course, the opening of doors that may be closed to us at this time.

 

There are so many significant symbolic correspondences for everyday items like that, but even more important than knowing precisely what the most common meanings are, is simply recognizing that something is in fact a sign. That we are receiving messages, that we are seeing omens, for better or worse. Just paying attention to the world around us, that we aren’t just passively experiencing the world around us, but that we are taking an active role. Understanding that there are forces around us that are making an effort to commune with us in some way that we can recognize. Because we can deduce what the messages mean one way or another, but if we don’t even notice them, we are missing out on such a large part of our spiritual experience in this world. And the best part about this, is that the more we see, the more we will continue to see. 

 

Once the universe, or god, or our guides or angels, however you interpret these powers, these consciousnesses, realizes that they are being seen and heard, the more willingly they will begin to communicate with us. And with practice, we will begin to recognize them and understand them more and more. One final thought on this topic is this: we can ask for signs at any time. This communication is a two-way street. We can communicate directly with Spirit and ask for messages. We can ask for direction. We can be specific, too. We can incorporate this into spellwork, in fact. As we are going through the preparatory work of writing out our spells, your methods are going to be different from mine, of course; this is very individual work, but as you’re working your spells out, include a bit about receiving a sign that your petition has been heard.

 

If I were doing a spell for a relationship for example, at the conclusion of the spellwork proper, I might include something like, “I will see rainbows and know that my spell is working.” And then as I go about my daily life, if and when I see rainbows, it’ll be my sign from the universe that the manifestation I’ve put out is coming into being. Doesn’t have to be rainbows, it could be anything. Point is, you can ask for signs. You can ask your deceased loved ones for signs, you can ask your guides for signs. And you’ll get them, I promise.

 

So let’s head out into the world with all three eyes wide open and ready to receive the signs that I know the universe is sending us. Please write to me with any questions, comments, or cool stories on social media at @middleagedwitch, or via email at eli@middleagedwitch.com. I’ll be here next week to talk about cauldron magick! My name is Eli Ro, and this has been the Middle-Aged Witch podcast. 

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