When I was growing up I lived on a farm in rural Saskatchewan. We were about 20 miles from a very small city in the southeast area of the province. Even though it had the status of being a city because of the size of the population, people in the city and surrounding areas very much lived like it was just a small town. There are some benefits to this. People tended to know their neighbors and tend to their gardens and such. The draw backs were that there was a small town mentality when it came to anything new or different. Everyone knew everyone else’s business and if anyone stepped out of line in the slightest way they would be ganged up on. Frankly, I could not wait to get the hell out of Dodge. I was a forward thinker. I was ahead of my time (still am) and to be limited to the lowest possible denominator when it came to social interactions and aspirations drove me crazy. I did eventually move away, not just because I had to get out of that environment, but because people were putting my family at risk by attacking because they saw me as some kind of Satanic witch, when what I was doing was Shamanism. Sigh…HEAVY sigh.
What I did not expect was that when I would come back to visit my family some of the family members would treat me like I was a traitor for leaving. I was doing that to protect them (and those attacking because they would not get away with that for long before harsh retalliation took place), but I was then the bad guy. Small town mentality. And then when I went to University, I was suddenly branded as the “stuck up” one. Why? Because I was furthering my education? Ridiculous. My father once, when I was visiting, refered to me as the Peacock. It was his way of trying to demean my elevation from the shit hole I grew up in.
Later, I discovered that the Peacock is quite the Spirit Animal! Its voice can be heard from quite a distance and, although the sound it makes is grating on the nerves, it WILL BE HEARD. Its plumage is absolutely gorgeous and, when threatened, it can make itself appear to be five times its size by simply standing its tail feathers up and spreading them in a huge fan. Those tail feathers are also symbolic of the Eye of the Goddess, which is why often the Peacock feathers are used in ritual and ceremony to honor Her.
The Peacock also sees all. It is a very observant bird and notices some of the most subtle movements around it. It is also associated with exotic things and with wealth. No wonder I am enthralled with this and so honored to have it as a Spirit Animal. And no wonder I would become enraged when neglectful parents at the local zoo would allow their snot nosed brats to chase peacocks and yank their tail feather out! I would become borderline homicidal. These magnificent birds were the target of far too many ignorant idiots.
One day a dear friend, without knowing my connection to the Peacock, brought me a huge bouquet of peacock feathers. I was almost speachless. Then I asked, “Where did you get this?” She replied that she knows a farmer down south who raises peacocks and these were the sheds from his farm. I was so touched. And I was so happy that they weren’t just plucked out of some poor bird for commercial outlets to make a buck. I treasured that bouquet. I also let her know what it meant to me and why. She was very impressed with that and the fact that, as the farmer gave her the feathers (she split the bouquet in half in order to gift me some) she knew that I was supposed to have the other half of the bouquet. Her intuition was spot on!
The Peacock spirit animal also offers lessons regarding honor, integrity, self-love and facing life’s challenges, according to the internet. This is cool. It also faces the unknown with courage. This seems to be part of why I no longer am wigged out by spiritual aspects of the unknown. For me, the tonal and the naugual are meant to eventually be blended with understanding. So when the tonal (a spirit animal who adopts you at birth) is presented to you, it moves from the unknown into the known. The naugual is the ability to take on the form and characteristics of an animal. Shapeshifters are known for this. Often in the dream realm when I am visiting someone, I will take on the appearance of an animal, even though they will know who I am anyway. There is a part of a person’s psyche that simply responds better to the natual world than it does to the human world. Although I have done this, I have not yet taken on the appearance of the Peacock.
So, even though my father meant this reference to me as being a Peacock to be an insult, it was actually quite the compliment! And that is a compliment I will definitely take.