Blog Post

Is a White Feather a Sign from Beyond the Grave?

DN writes: “Lately my kids & I have come across white feathers in odd places that I know I’ve cleaned in my house. My mom (all Italian) says this is someone from Heaven? Is this true?”

The idea that white feathers are messages from beyond is nothing more than folklore that could bloom into something worse if we’re not careful.

The reason I issue this warning is because the idea of white feathers being a sign from a deceased loved one is eagerly promoted by mediums and other New Age enthusiasts who like to refer to these “messages” as "Angel Feathers." It’s part of a larger body of belief in spirits they call “angels” that actually have no resemblance to the biblical understanding of angelic beings. The New Age variety is not about beings who exist to fulfill the will of God but is concerned with spiritual entities who contact us from beyond either through our dreams, the use of “angel cards” which are similar to tarot cards, the psychic abilities of a “channeler,” or other means to give us advice and direction about our life.

For example, as this “angel channeler” explains, different colored feathers mean different thing: green feathers signify money and abundance; purple signifies the opening of psychic and spiritual sight; black is a reminder of your angel’s spiritual protection and that magic and wisdom are “accessible within you.” In this case, the guidance comes in the form of different colored feathers.

The problem with these New Age angels, who usually have fanciful names such as Asaliah and Yehuiah, is that they can be demonic entities so it’s never a good idea to go too far down this road, even for something as seemingly harmless as believing a white feather means a deceased relative is okay on the “other side.”

Those of us who have lost loved ones know how desperate we can be for some sign that our beloved is okay. This is why the grieving are particularly vulnerable to the temptation to go further than just seeing a feather or two and seek out a medium to try to make contact with their lost love. Popular shows like The Long Island Medium that promote necromancy put everyone at risk, including the aggrieved, by making a very dangerous practice look like a good deed or act of compassion when what it is really doing is exposing people to the influence of demonic entities.

To be honest, finding feathers in odd places doesn't seem all that strange to me. I stumble across a feather or two nearly every time I take my afternoon Rosary walk. Instead of attributing any superstitious meaning to these delicate little wisps of nature, I stuff them in my pocket and bring them home for my cats to play with. All the guidance I need in life I get from prayer, Scripture, and the Sacraments.

So if you come across a white feather in an odd place, instead of attributing some prophetic meaning to it, use it as a reminder to pray for the repose of the souls of your lost loved ones. They'll appreciate it!

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