The Native Symbol or Totem Eagle is known as “The master of skies” and is a symbol of great significance. He is believed to be the creature with the closest relationship with the creator. By soaring great heights, he can travel between the physical world and the spiritual world. He is said to be a messenger to the creator. Unlike the raven’s ability to send messages down, the eagle sends messages and prayers to the Creator. If an Eagle was seen during a Prayer session it was a sign of having a prayer accepted If a prayer needed immediate attention from the creator an eagle feather would be held up towards the sky. Although every part of the eagle has separate and significant meanings, the Eagle as a whole signifies focus, great strength, peace, leadership and incredible prestige. The wings of an eagle symbolize the balance and co-dependency between females and males, and how each gender must work unitedly in order to achieve harmonious results. The eagle feather plays a substantial part in religious and shamanic practices and ceremonies. The feathers were only allowed to be worn by people who had earned the privilege. For example warriors that had done extremely well in battles would have a feather rewarded to them. The eagle feather transmits strength; it gives the ability to speak honestly from the heart, without hurt or anger. The middle vane in the feather symbolizes the path that every man walks in their life time, and every barb that comes of the middle vane symbolizes the choices we all have in life, and that every choice we make is attached to the middle or main path that we take. Eagle down is scattered in entrances as a friendly welcome when people of great importance come and it is also often used in dances. Besides being a member of many different clans, every descendant from the Northwest Coast First Nations belongs to either a Raven or Eagle Clan. The membership is always defined by which clan the individuals mother belonged to.
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