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Trustinglife's avatar

Are red cardinals a symbol of death or afterlife in any way?

Asked by Trustinglife (6603points) December 19th, 2008

This is my friend, asking another question here:

“Are you aware of any meaning or connection between red cardinals and death?

I had a friend die who said he would make contact with me after he died. Shortly after, I had a red cardinal visit me in my sleep, in a waking dream. Some of my most heightened spiritual moments are accompanied by the presence of a cardinal. I’m talking about real life, not a dream.

So I’m curious about whether there’s a symbolic meaning. Or if it’s just me. Or is it really my friend making contact?”

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106 Answers

tinyvamp's avatar

No, you are by no means the only person to experience this. I’ve actually heard about this a lot but I don’t remember all the details so I can’t fully answer your question right now. :(

I’d have to speak to my mom she is like a spirit warrior or something like that at her church.
this is probably a hint that i need to choose a faith and not be agnostic

hypeserver's avatar

tinyvamp Being agnostic is still having faith. Atheist is when you do not believe in any god or afterlife.

tinyvamp's avatar

@hypeserver: technically that is true but i don’t feel that way because i only have a thread of faith instead of many threads of faith—which makes me feel that i am an athiest 99.9% of the time.

asmonet's avatar

@hype: I don’t think you quite understand agnosticism.

Being an Agnostic Theist is still having faith. But that’s one version of many who do not have it.

jasongarrett's avatar

Red cardinals are a symbol of Ohio.

asmonet's avatar

Ohio seems like death to me.

Pollyanna's avatar

I work in a hospice….we almost always have a cardinal peck on one of the windows before someone dies here. Everyone that works here knows it and watches for them. :)

EnzoDryus's avatar

I have also had experience with a red cardinal. Shortly after my father-in laws passing, a red cardinal appeared on a tree stump of a tree he had cut down for us along with a beer bottle he had placed there (we have never removed the bottle). In addition, when visiting his grave, a red cardinal appeared in the distance. When we went to vist another relative at the same grave site, an additional red cardinal appeared.

Trustinglife's avatar

@EnzoDryus Thanks for the response on this, and welcome to the collective.

Ironic that you responded and brought this question present again… my same friend who asked this question has since gotten diagnosed with colon cancer, and is not doing so hot. My prayers are with him. Hopefully I won’t be seeing any cardinals any time soon!

Susanknade's avatar

I have had a red cardinal tapping on my window just outside my office for the past few days…. Trying to figure out if he is trying to tell me something.

Trustinglife's avatar

Hopefully it’s nothing but a beautiful bird. If someone dies, let us know.

mau5l's avatar

We also had an experience with a red cardinal. Every Sunday we go see my husband’s grandfather who was in hospice care and his mom had called us this morning to tell us that the nurse had called her and said that he had taken a turn for the worse. We all made it there to see him and then he passed away but before all this happened, me and my husband were sitting out on the porch when this red cardinal which we never ever see came and sat on our fence and we were so amazed with it because it is such a beautiful bird and then after we came home from seeing his grandfather we were out on the porch and again it came back to visit on our fence. I decided to get online to ask or find the answer to the very same question you had asked so we helped each other out. I didn’t have to look far for it. Thank you.

Trustinglife's avatar

Welcome to the Collective. I’m sorry to say that my good friend Tom, who had asked this question, passed away a few weeks ago. I have yet to see a cardinal, but his presence is with me.

Trueblue86's avatar

Since my dad passed away a red cardinal has been visiting in the backyard of our home. I was lying on the hammock reading and it flew over to the bottom where my feet were and sat for a moment then as I at first got a bit startled and moved it flew onto the nearby fence and sat a while. I also wonder if this is a sign my dad is with me…

d_tay's avatar

I have experinced this three times and everytime I see a red cardinal a family member or a close friend of mines dies

Stillsad's avatar

My mom recently passed, and a median not only gave me the exact date that she passed, but gave me a message from my mom. She told me that she’s at peace & no longer in pain, and she’s been trying to get my attention….she’s coming to me in a form of a red cardinal. A red cardinal does appear regularly. It also visits my sisters, and my 16 yr. old son had a dream of seeing a red cardinal.

Trustinglife's avatar

It’s amazing to me that people keep adding to this thread. It’s one of the many contributions my friend made that’s still alive. I say it’s his contribution because when I was showing him Fluther and invited him to ask a question, this is what he asked.

nwb's avatar

Just a couple of weeks ago someone mentioned the ‘cardinal/death’ connection and I thought it was interesting. Last night my father-in-law passed away. This morning I was sitting on my front porch with my dog and a beautiful pair of cardinals came and sat on my fence and in the bushes just about 10 feet from us. The male cardinal stayed around for a while and did what I thought was a lot of posing on the fence, in the bush, and in a tree. I’m a true believer now.

Redinspiration's avatar

I have been praying regularly for my family and friends who have passed away to let them know we miss them, think of them and ask for comfort of their families. Those prayers are usually followed by a red cardinal flying in front of my car on my way in to work or just driving down the road the next day. Before this, I would rarely even see a red cardinal or hardly any birds in the area where I live in Florida because it is mostly orange grove land. I have also seen red cardinals following the death of a family member after praying for that person, again flying in front of my car so I cannot miss it and the beautiful red color. I had two red cardinals fly in front of me at different times within 5 minutes of each other the next day while driving to work after praying for Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson. My husband also dreamed the night that I had prayed for Michael Jackson that Michael was in our bedroom that night and hiding under our bed (ha, ha). I had to tell him I had prayed for him and his family. He then told me he sees dead people in our bedroom at night so I told him I pray for a lot of people who have passed.

debskiy's avatar

I think red cardinals are a symbal of good from God. I was praying this day it was on a winter day with snow on the ground. In my backyard through the window I saw a squirrel and a red cardinal eating next to each other and thought how cute. I do not know what I was praying about but I can say that ever since then I believed that whenever I would see a cardinal it was a good thing. This has been about 20 yrs. ago. I do not believe red cardinals are evil symbal.

forestboone's avatar

Wow…okay, here is my story now:

My lab of nearly 16 years died today. I live alone and have no children so I was pretty devastated. I had his body in a blanket in the trunk of my car with the trunk open. I decided to sit on my porch nearby and write him a letter of gratitude to put in his grave with him that I had already dug, also about 18 feet away. Well, as I wrote and cried, and remembered how much he gave me (he saved my life in 2006, after we both moved back from London England) and in the Dogwood tree 6 feet directly above the hole landed an intensely red Cardinal. I watched it-a male for quite some time, sensing that he was a messenger of sorts. There was also a very ,very, dull red Female in a nearby tree but nowhere near where I was getting ready to bury my best friend CY. I told this story to a friend later in the evening speculating that it was Cy giving me hope in an otherwise bleakly overcast Winter’s day. She Googled Cardinal symbology and sent me something about it. Now, it’s 3:20 in the A.m., I can’t sleep, and first search, at the very top of the page, I am relieved to find other similar stories here. Note that my knowing the bird was of special importance preceded any knowledge of these birds whatsoever…so it cannot be said, “I was just fishing for or forcing a meaning where no existed”. In fact, it was quite the opposite. Very cool, thanks to all!

MaggieH's avatar

Red Cardinal in the snow, definetly a sign but of what I do not really know….a message of sorts. I read all of these comments and find them very interesting
Thanks to all

nbbl's avatar

My son was killed in a car accident almost 11 years ago. After his death every time we visited his grave something from nature would happen. A large monarch butterfly would land on his headstone or flutter from one side of the cemetery and linger right over his grave. I actually became accustomed to these events. In the first month after his passing we visited often. My oldest son and I were at his grave and I noticed that there hadn’t been any nod from nature. We were standing in silence when I saw for the first time in my life a brilliant red cardinal pop out from a nearby bush and land on the limb of a tree just above us. On the anniversary of his death I have seen red cardinals around his grave many times. Who is the Red Cardinal? I see him as a symbol of Christ, wrapped in his red robe the Highest Cardinal of all. What a tender mercy.

nbbl's avatar

Oh one last thought the red cardinal is the Christ-Mass bird. Look at Christmas cards, tree ornaments or any Christmas decoration section and count how many you see.

valerief's avatar

My younger brother died 1/16/10 a policeman helping someone on duty, struck by a vehical. Since then I have been inandated with cardinals. We have had a bird feeder outside our kitchen window for years. Given to us by a family friend who has since died.We get all sorts of birds throughout the year. This is different i have never seen so many Cardinals at one time regularly during the corse of the day.I pray to my brother all the time to let me know he is ok. I hope that this is his way of letting me know.the scary thing is I am having a colonoscopy in three days, I hope this isnt a sign that i am next??awez

ejm's avatar

Just a week ago, my mother-in-law died at home with hospice. While we were waiting for the hospice nurse to arrive, my husband and I heard the very insistent call of a bird outside the window. My mother-in-law’s neighbor has a bird feeder and we would often see lots of sparrows, but no other birds around the feeder. When we approached the window, we saw the most brilliant red cardinal in a tree outside my mother-in-law’s window. He was gorgeous… and it was if he was calling us to come to the window. There was also a female cardinal in another tree in the distance. I wondered if my mother-in-law’s sprit had flowed in to the cardinal.. who then flew off.

Four years ago my brother had a similar experience seeing a cardinal just before the funeral of our brother. Since that time, I have aIways felt comforted whenever I have seen a cardinal. I will be looking forward to another cardinal visit soon.


Trustinglife's avatar

@ejm That was beautiful. Thank you for sharing your experience.

jorrbuddy's avatar

My grandmother passed away suddenly in 2005. Before her death I rarely saw cardinals. When we were cleaning out her apt. on a lake, my mother went outside onto the balcony for some fresh air and noticed a large brilliant red tanker ship passing by. She called to me to come out and see the ship saying “your grandmother would have loved the colour of this one” Just as she said that a bright red cardinal landed on the balcony railing…almost as if to let us know she was there with us and also saw the ship. The fact the ship was bright red and a bright red cardinal landed at the same moment was surely a sign to us she was there with us. Since then I see the cardinal regularly. It seems to live in my backyard….a house that I bought only 6 mths after her death. I find comfort and peace when the cardinal appears and always feel like she has visited me and is letting me know she is ok :)

Trustinglife's avatar

@jorrbuddy Wow! Thanks for sharing this powerful experience with us. I got chills reading it.

I never saw cardinals after my friend Tom (who asked this question) passed last year. But all of your responses are like my own cardinal appearances.

GiggleLover's avatar

Wow, as I type, my pair of red cardinals are tapping on my glass door!

I took care of my sweet little Mother for 12 years, and we promised to each other,
that whoever died first, would promise to come visit the other in a very obvious way!

The day after she died, This Beautiful Vibrant Red Cardinal started tapping on my glass
door. RED is my favorite color! Mother and I always watched the birds out the glass door together, but rarely saw cardinals.

For 2.5 years now, I have a set of Cardinals that come tap on my window several
times a day. I know it is my sweet Mother keeping her promise to come visit in an
obvious way.

If I don’t pay attention to them in the Living Room, ironically, they come tap on MY
bedroom window.

How cool to find others who have experienced the same situations.

I believe it is a gift of Love!

Trustinglife's avatar

@GiggleLover Wow, amazing to hear such a vivid story!

vanese's avatar

i recently lost my 9 year old son in february. shortly afterwards i was sitting at my grandmothers and her nurse noticed a red bird which i now know as a cardinal, outside the door, i didn’t think anything of it other than i haven’t seen such a bird in many years (i live in texas), but what happened next baffled me, my mother who lives in the same city, but resides at a different residence came over a few days later and told a story about seeing a beautiful red bird perched outside the door. i never mentioned seeing the cardinal. i said to myself “no way, is it possible?” i had no idea what this encounter meant and started searching the web and came across this site and after reading everyone’s post i’m now certain that it had something to do with my son.

Trustinglife's avatar

Wow! Story after beautiful, touching story. I’ve been thinking a lot about my friend Tom who asked this question – he would have turned 60 this week, and the 1-year anniversary of his death is coming up. I felt his presence today. Nice that he’s still “here,” even though it’s not the same.

BEB's avatar

I think you are being given red cardinals with these stories. After my son passed away 11 years ago and we started to see red cardinals at his grave another interesting thing has happened. Because friends and family knew how significant it was to me they would give me all kinds of cardinals: ceramic, wood, lots of christmas ornaments….. I realized the cardinal was just manifesting in a different form but still coming as a remembrance and gift from him.

kathyduffy's avatar

I really enjoyed reading these stories! I went to have a reading done today, she told me to think of things I wanted answered,I thought ofmy husband who passed a year ago this month, thought of my kids,and if I’d find someone. As she was giving my reading a cardinalstarted singing outside the window and she said that it was probably him. She told me to get a bird feeder even if its to just relax me by watching the birds. I never heard of cardinals and the death. I am glad I went.

katvan's avatar

Nice to know I’m not crazy, or alone with the cardinal visits. My father passed away 30 years ago. About 6 years ago, while living in Michigan, I was standing at my kitchen window which overlooked our bird feeder. I was missing my dad a lot that day and just pondering and hoping he was in a “better place.” There were no birds at the feeder and I had not seen a cardinal in many months. I said “Dad, if you’re ok and happy in another place, send me a cardinal.” I don’t know why I picked a cardinal, other than I know he used to love them, but who doesn’t? Not, 30 seconds later…...the most beautiful red male cardinal appeared on the feeder…..stayed for about 10 seconds and left. Blew me away!! I had to test it. I said “Dad, if that really was a sign from you, send me a chickadee to let me know mom is with you.” Wham….a chickadee landed just like that! I swear. I told a few friends and got that look… uh-huh sure. A few days later at work they were selling damaged items and one of them was a ceramic warming lid to a coffee mug. Just the lid…..mug was broken. On top of the lid was a bright red cardinal! So, I bought it. Took it home and when I went to put it in the cupboard…....I noticed something was also painted on the underside….sure enough…..a chickadee!! A few months later I was sent a package from March of Dimes along with their annual Chistmas cards, and the cover was a snow-covered pine with one red cardinal and one chickadee!

We have lived in Florida now for over 5 years and have never once seen a cardinal in our yard. We put up a feeder last year and have only had one bird in the year….a bluejay, several months ago. Last week was my dad’s birthday (101 years young) and also the week of his passing. I said to him on 4/23/10 “OK dad….. I’ve never seen a cardinal down here in Florida.” Left the next day for a cruise and returned yesterday. This morning my husband said “hey, look out in the back yard.” Sure enough there was a red cardinal on the fence and he flew to the bird feeder for a few seconds…..then off he went!

I was so pleased to see from this website that others have had similar experiences.

Trustinglife's avatar

I love reading these experiences.

It was a year ago today that my friend Tom (who wrote this question) passed on. Tom, your memory is a blessing.

rdobbs's avatar

I have a 14-year-old chocolate lab named Molly that was diagnosed with lung cancer this past Thursday. Her condition is quickly deteriorating. We were just in the backyard letting her lay in the grass for a bit when something caught my eye. A red cardinal was falling straight down through the limbs of a large tree directly over Molly’s head. When it was 3 or 4 feet above her head it righted itself and flew to the grass about 6 feet from her. Then it just sat there staring at her for a few minutes before taking off.

I’ve never seen a cardinal in the backyard here. It was such a startling experience that I immediately came inside to Google the symbolism of it. The way it happened was absolutely no coincidence or accident.

It was nice to read this thread.


wendystrow's avatar

I am a hospice nurse. Red cardinals are so frequently present when one of my patients die. I always feel so comforted when I see the cardinals. Many times I will be drving along and a cardinal will swoop down in front of my car then I will get a call that a patient has died. Almost always after a patient that has been very close to my heart dies, the cardinals will be sitting in the trees as a drive into my drive way. They always give me such a warm sense that ” everything is going to be OK”. I love seeing the cardinals and hearing their song. My sister is currently fighting breast cancer and I saw many cardinals when I was visiting her to help out after surgery. I felt comforted by them then too and I am really hopeful that does not mean death is near by for her. But if it is the cardinals will be singing loudly I am sure.

Trustinglife's avatar

I’m moved by what you wrote, Wendy. My heart goes out to you with your sister.

susieqx3's avatar

This is so strange and a little scary too I guess. I simply cant remember how I got the idea to look up the meaning of a Red Cardinal. I cant remember if I dreamed about them or was having a dream while awake. I was in my bed, but it seemed like I was awake. I just didnt know what it meant.
My mohter has stage 4 lung cancer, and so does my best friend. And if the bird means impending death, then couldnt it quite possibly be “my own death” and not just my mother and best friend. I was praying one night asking my father who passed away 11 years ago, to help me….I needed him and his help. I also asked God for His help as well, but cried for my father to help me. Im n

ot sure I like the meaning of the bird. And I didnt realize it either but the Red cardinal IS on the front of Christmas Cards. Why would anyone want to put the the symbol of death on a Christmas Card? So Im gonna beleive that the red cardinal is a symbol of life after death and a message of hope!!!

Rickytwo's avatar

This morning I had a dream about my mother and father both now dead. The gist seemed to be that I had done something wrong and had to leave. Leave where or what was not stated. My mother was very tender and professed her love for me – something she rarely did when alive. My father seemed agitated and stated he did not want to go through all this again. The in that in between place from sleep to awakening I heard these words ” My daughters are the Cardinals of Death ” Go figure.

Zena's avatar

This evening, after work, my sister, son, & I were putting flowers on my mother’s grave (She died almost 2 weeks ago) and we heard a bird chirping away (what a chatterbox!!) and when we looked, we saw a bird fly up from off of the ground and twirl around – then fly away. He was only about 20 feet away from us. How touching that was! We couldn’t see the color of the bird since it was dusk, but it did look like the shape of a cardinal.

4Rodney's avatar

Omgosh.. I truly don’t where to start with my “red bird” story. My husband passed away In June 2010. For a month or so before he passed away he watched a male and a female red bird in our front yard tree, and made many comments about seeing them. His mothers boyfriend passed away (they lived in Troy, TN) And Rodney went alone to be with his mother for the services, I was not able to get off work to join them. He left town on that Friday, the service was on that Sunday. When Rodney and his mother and sisters were leaving to attend the service, one of his sisters spotted a red bird in the yard. Which at this point she brought it to her mothers attention because mamaw had always loved red birds and had a little saying she would say when she spotted one. Well they arrived at the funeral home and right before the funeral service started Rodney suffered a massive heart attack. He was only 39 .. they worked on him and got a faint heart beat and continue to work an hour and twenty minutes to bring him back. When the same sister and mother left the funeral home to head towards the hospital they spotted two red birds. And as they talked about seeing three red birds that day on the way to the hopsital they realized it was the anniversary of mamaw’s death. (which by the way Rodney was very close to his grand mother and referred to her as his heart) He passed on the anniversary date of her death. Now don’t get me wrong, I know God called him home but I will always believe he sent his grandmother to bring him home. The day that we made the arrangements for Rodney his sister shared the red bird story with me and I told her how he had been watching them at home for some time. After arriving back to my house the two red birds he had been watching were there next to the front porch where he and I had spent so much time together. And still today we see our red birds and it brings comfort and a smile to us. My chilfren and I are getting matching tattoos of a red bird in memory of this wonderful man that was taken from us way to soon, so we will forever have our red bird close to us. My heart and prayers go out to each and everyone that reads any of these post. I truly understand the meaning of loss here. There is a song I listen to often that helps me on my down days and serves as a reminder of why this may have happened its Jodee Massina (sure hope I spelled that correctly) ” Heaven must have needed a hero” hope you all enjoy it . Love and Respect to everyone, Tami

gerbie05's avatar

Never have I posted anything in a forum-type atmosphere, but must on this topic. My oldest sister (I am the youngest of 5) died in Oct 1996 of ovarian cancer. She was in a free-standing hospice center, and we all gathered for almost 2 weeks so we could be with her when she passed. A window in her room looked out into a courtyard where several cardinals showed up each day. At the funeral mass the priest told a story about cardinals. We all noted the connection in our subconscious – we were grieving too deeply to really pay attention.

Shortly thereafter, cardinals started appearing to us individually – especially in times of stress, or when I was really missing her. It was winter in the midwest so it wasn’t exceedingly rare to see them, but it still gave me some comfort to think “maybe”. The clincher (for me) that this really was my “sister” came when my parents were at my house for a visit. We were talking about her, and a cardinal landed on the porch railing right outside the window, clearly looking in at us.

The cardinal became a family symbol. But wait – the story grows continues : )

Another sister died unexpectedly in March 2008. My two children were at school, and I had to call them and let them know that their aunt had died, and that they needed to come home – horrible call to make, by the way. Both in high school, they drove home. My daughter was crying so hard that she really shouldn’t have been behind the wheel. A cardinal landed in the middle of the road. She literally had to stop her car so that she wouldn’t hit it.

THEN – there is still more!! : ) – that spring of 2008 I was grieving deeply. With my older sister it had been rough, but towards the end we knew she was going to pass and were able to make some peace with it, and be grateful that she would be out of pain. With this sister, it was sudden, unnecessary and unfair. That year a pair of cardinals made a nest in a bush in my backyard. I had never in my life seen baby cardinals, nor knew what the female looked like, nor anything about their nests. We spent the summer watching the parents teach a baby cardinal to fly. While the nest was in different places, “I” had baby cardinals in the spring of both 2009 and 2010. This sister seemed to come to me in the form of a female cardinal (although I can’t same the same for other family members).

I now completely accept and believe that these birds are symbols – for me – of my sisters. My husband and I see them all the time – walking, driving, riding the motorcycle, just looking outside. For me, the cardinals do not symbolize death. They symbolize love, caring, and hope.

In fact, I found this website and thread because I am getting ready to start a business. I want to incorporate cardinals into the name, and was looking for inspiration on exactly how to phrase it.

Thank you so much to all of you who have shared your experiences. While the cardinal is “my” symbol, I believe there are others, too. Butterflies were mentioned above. I’ve also heard (and experienced) pennies just showing up in odd places. This all further validates to me that our loved ones do not leave – they move on – and a part of them still watches, loves and cares. We just need to keep our minds open for the proof because I do believe it is there.

istheremore's avatar

I don’t know if anyone will see this b/c the question was posted so long ago. My father died in 1983 in a hospital. In the afternoon of the night that he died I was sitting with him in his room and saw a beautiful cardinal in the tree. I described it to him and for a brief moment we shared a joy for this beautiful bird. I’m writing this today because I was at home holding my dying cat on the floor trying to decide whether to stress her out taking her to the vet for euthanasia or wait until tomorrow until the vet can come to my house. I heard a tapping at my window. I lifted my head from the floor and saw a cardinal in the bush outside the window. I felt my father was coming back to comfort me during this distressful time. My cat is sleeping peacefully now so I’m hoping I can wait until the vet comes tomorrow. When I saw this cardinal I had to immediately do an internet search b/c I had heard later after my father died that cardinals signal death. They might signal death but to me, they also signal that there is something after death and they are the messingers to tell us it will be ok.

JustMom's avatar

This is the first Christmas since my son’s passing. Needless to say, I have been feeling sad and depressed. Then two days ago, I thought I’d ask him for a sign that he’s OK. I asked to see a cardinal in a certain tree. Nothing that day or the next. Then today, I was at the other end of the house when it just suddenly came to me to go and look out the window at the tree. Sure enough .. there it was! One beautiful red cardinal.
Yes, of course there is a logical explanation, as well as coincidence… but sometimes, it’s just easier to believe.

dcb's avatar

My mother died at 87, 3 weeks after she was diagnosed with cancer. She had always enjoyed watching the birds in her back yard. On the morning of her funeral, 3 red cardinals, in 3 separate incidents, flew into our garage and fluttered around before finding their way back out. In the fourteen years that we have lived here, we hadn’t seen this happen, and we have yet to ever see it again. I knew it must be a sign from her and I’m even more convinced after reading other’s experiences. I also wonder if the number 3 is signficant as well, although it may have just been a way for me to know that it was not a coincidence.

Cam254's avatar

I’m very curious about this topic. I would love opinions! My fiancés grandparents had passed away a few years ago & for the past few months there has been a family fued over the house they left to my fiance and his sister. She wants to sell the house to get the money while my fiance wants the chance to live in the house. He loves the memories so much he doesn’t even want the bathroom redone because his grandmother layer the tiles. Which I love & respect dearly. Him and his sister got into the biggest fight Lastnight over EVERYTHING. well with that said when I woke up this morning I heard tapping & pulled back the curtains & saw a bird I’ve never seen before just looking me in the eye before it flew to a nearby tree. I googled & found that it was a female cardinal. She was beautiful. Could this have been a sign from my fiances grandmother?

Elaine64's avatar

Wow, I love this thread. About 2 years or so ago my husband and I noticed a red cardinal coming to our feeder. We grew very attached to it. After we moved into our new house we were sad because there weren’t many trees around and certainly no cardinals. We loved the new house but missed our cardinal! About 2 months later we decided to hang a feeder just to see if we could draw some birds. Well wouldn’t you know it, we had a pair of cardinals come to our feeder! They’ve been coming ever since. We are so attached to them and look for cardinals everywhere we go. It’s really odd and I was puzzled by my fascination with cardinals. Well about 3 weeks ago I visited a pyshic medium and she connected with my parents who have both passed on. She was relaying information to me from my mom and when I asked if my mom could hear me when I talk to her, the medium blurted out “red cardinals, she said she sends you red cardinals”. There had been no mention of any type of birds during my reading so when she said that I was overwhelmed with happiness and love. She said she sends me the red cardinals so I’ll know she is there with me. Now whenever I am thinking or talking to my mother more often than not a red cardinal will fly by me as I’m driving or make himself known with his cheerful song. So amazing!!!

mjrl's avatar

My mother stated to my sister before she died that she wanted to be a Red Cardinal. Last year while being terrorized, a red cardinal came to my bedroom window when I felt I was going to cry every morning.

Upon my Uncles funeral my sister informed me that a Red Cardinal came to the funeral at sat on a branch up on the hill watching t…he whole funeral mass. My sister is a Born Again Christian. I was surprised to have heard that from her. But my mother was a devout Catholic and the meaning in catholic respect are Priests of strong faith and another of Christmas time and the celebration of Christ’s birth to us and for us. As a Hospice Nurse I never heard that story about Red Cardinals showing up.

But last year I felt victimized and terrorized by people and I would receive a Red Cardinal outside my bedroom window just about every day and morning. A blue bird also came to the window. Hawks flew by my head all the time. And one day I woke up late for church and thousannds of sparrows were making a all chirking so that I woke up and went to church. Matthew 10:29 What is the price of two sparrows—one copper coin*? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. 30 And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. 31 So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.

I told a woman at church about this occurance, she said, “God just gave you a loving message.” And then I looked up into the window and the sparrows followed me to church and flew by the window that is a oval with a cross. When I think of these occurances with birds, the love of God prevails and gives me hope that not everyone in America are terrorist extremists in faith.

Scriptoria's avatar

I would like to thank you, Adam and your friend Tom for opening this enlightening conversation. This is my first experience blogging. It’s also the first time I have been able to write at all since my husband, Jack passed away in a hospice three months ago. (Today is the anniversary of his death.) As a writer, who has been unable to write so much as an email, well I’m sure you can imagine the depths of my grief. At any rate, while I am beginning to understand and accept the process of grieving, one thing I was totally unable to come to terms with was not hearing from my husband since his death. On his deathbed, Jack promised to call out to me, just to let me know that he had made it safely to heaven. I know this expectation may sound strange to some, but I actually worked for many years as a clairvoyant helping to find missing children so hearing a few words from the man I love is something I truly expected.

While I have not heard my husbands voice as yet, something odd did begin to occur about a month ago. In hopes of relieving my grief, I walked down a wooded trail a few of blocks from my house. It was there that I heard a voice calling down to me from a large oak tree. It sounded like he was saying “here, here”. When I looked up, I was surprised to see a beautiful red cardinal. I acknowledged his presence and his beauty, but for some strange reason he would not stop yelling to me. Of course my first thought was of Jack, but I did not have clue as to what the cardinal was trying to tell me.

The next day as I got into my car I heard the same call from the tree next to me. I wasn’t sure it was the same bird, but he certainly called down to me in the same passionate manner and for an entire month now the same feisty cardinal has relentlessly pursued my attentions. Just last week I began sinking a little further into depression. I was sitting alone in the house with the all of the window blinds closed tight around me when that incredible little red bird perched himself on a bough of a tree and peered over the top of the blinds through the opening of an arched window. From there he began calling out “here, here” until he literally called me out of the house. He had been coming around every day, but on this day he was so demanding that there was no ignoring him. As I stepped out into the sunlight I had to smile at the persistent little creature who was more and more reminding me of Jack himself.

The truth is this was a little disturbing as I didn’t want to think that somehow Jack’s spirit was in that little red bird. Now Jack was a former pilot, and he had told me in those last hours that he aimed to “fly on red wings to heaven”. Certain that he was alluding to his beloved red airplane, I encouraged him in those last moments to imagine a great and wondrous flight into the clear blue heavens on his ‘red wings’.

Could it be that those red wings belonged to a bird? I had to ask, who is this cardinal and what does this all mean? That’s when I began digging and discovered that the cardinal has a long history as symbolic messenger of the heavens. He is indeed associated with bringing cheer to the world in the midst of barren winters, hence his regal image appearing on Christmas cards and ornaments throughout the season. I understand now, that in the same way he beacons us to rise above our grief and know that there is a full and happy life beyond death and sadness. This little red bird is a messenger of hope and all this time he has been shouting “cheer, cheer” how foolish I feel now that I could not hear what he was trying so hard to say.

The entire matter has become so uplifting that I am inspired to write about this cardinal experience, and not just mine alone. I am referring to the cardinal experiences so many of you have shared on this blog. I would like to compose and publish an uplifting book filled with sincere heartfelt stories such as the ones here at fluther to give hope and comfort to others who have lost or are going through the difficult process of losing a loved one. I would also like to dedicate as much of the sales proceeds as possible to hospice. I have no doubt that this is the right thing to do as the cardinal messenger himself has just flown back, seated himself on the fence adjacent to my window and begun in his own words to “cheer” me on. I am so excited that I actually just ran outside and took a picture of him.

If there is anyone reading this now who would like to participate in this project with their own cardinal experiences, please write to me at: Yes, believe it or not I just set up this email and will be launching a site for the project as soon as I can. God Bless you all for asking questions and sharing your inspiring stories!

Trustinglife's avatar

@Scriptoria What a beautiful post – thanks so much for sharing your experience with us. I’m glad to hear that these stories supported and validated this uplifting experience for you.

kikiapoo's avatar

I am enjoying all of the beautiful posts, It has made me feel so much peace. I lost my beloved Mom on March 30th, 2011 at 0136. About a month before her death, I was preparing for work just before dawn, we would hear a bird chirping at the window. I was not sure what type of bird it was because it was dark outside. This bird would chirp around the same time every morning as if it were our alarm clock. This went on for like maybe 2wks and then it stopped. My mom took notice and was like, what happened to our bird? I was like I dunno, maybe it found another window to sing at, and she just simply said hmmm…I know now the reason and I am in awe. I miss my mom dearly and I have been very sad because of her absence, but now when I think about the bird it eases some of the pain. God Bless You All

SADMOMMIE's avatar

I would like to response on the red cardinal. About two months ago I became pregnant with my first child. For three days a cardinal visted my home, and pooped on my husband’s car everyday. The funny thing about it the bird pooped in the same place every time. about a week ago I had a miscarriage.

honeychild610's avatar

The last thing my dad told my mom as he was dying is that he could not wait for the salmon cardinals to come back, Now we always seem to find a pretty red cardinal around us from time to time. Reminds me of him. Maybe he was telling her that he will still be with her even when he is gone.

newhope's avatar

Okay so a year ago I became a Christian so I am still new to all this listening to God and following him stuff. But a few things have happened to me this week that have really got my eyes opened. The first is not related to a cardinal but it fits in. The other day I started some inner healing sessions where I repented and received forgiveness for sins that I’ve held on to for most of my life. Well the next day I looked into my flower garden and there were my Easter Lillies open. I planted my Easter lillies in the fall of 2010 after they had bloomed in the Spring of 2010. So why now in the middle of summer, the day after my inner healing, did they open up? Then today as I was praying for the Lord to take my hand and guide me through some really scary rough times, A cardinal landed on the roof directly above my living room window, where I now sit. It chirped for a good 10 mins. Even when the dog went running to the window it just flew to the ground and kept on chirping.. It’s now flown away but I can still hear it. I’m thinking He is speaking to me I just don’t know what? Lillies open up? Cardinal singing an insistent song on my window while I pray? Speaks loud to me don’t you think?

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t0224771's avatar

My brother passed in July 2011 after a year and a half diagnosed with Lung Cancer. He was only 53, very vibrant and handsome. I hate cancer because it takes every ounce of dignity a person has – it also did this to Clay – he was a very proud person. Anyway, my sister, Judy and I took care of him, since he wasn’t married and we are all orphans. We started together when he was diagnosed, and ended all together when he died. He died around 6:30 in the morning on a Wednesday. Prior to his dying he had lain in his bed and looked out his window seeming transfixed on nature. As we waited for the Hospice nurse to finish everything, as well as the funeral to collect his body I was standing out in the yard alone, crying and thinking about him. I had NEVER heard the connection between red birds and death. All of a sudden this Cardinal flew by me like at a 100 miles an hour – It was so fully of life, and seemed like it was on top of the world. I couldn’t help but wonder if this might be my brother feeling suddenly set free of sickness and was able to just fly and be free. I thought, now Clay if this is YOU, do it again – in the next breath it flew by me again – I’m talking within 3 feet of me both times.

I’ve told very few people about this, haven’t googled or anything – I just thought it was a fluke. However, I was talking to a lady at work yesterday and she had just had a death of a dear friend. When I told her my story – she said, that is so odd that I would tell Her that story – because on Monday (her friend died on Thursday) a cardinal had ran into her bedroom window – when she went to see if the bird was hurt, it was just sitting in a bush below the window, looked at her for a few minutes and then flew away. There’s got to be something to it. Clay and I had always said we would send a sign – I believe that was mine letting me know that he was free and happy.

whythesethingshappen2me's avatar

Yesterday I was going to get my hair done and when I arrived at the salon I seen a cardinal on the step. At first I thought it was fake but then I got real close to it and touched it’s tail. It moved it’s head and looked right at me. My heart stoped and I was freaked out a little. Well I went into the salon and asked a lady if she had seen this bird outside and she was like no. Well she wanted to see it so we went back outside and I showed and even started petting it. It never moved. We thought it must be sick so she got a box and I was going to take it to some wildlife santuary or something but when I went to pick it up it flew off. Weird huh? Everyone has told me that it has to mean something so I started to search for some kind of meaning on the net. My Father did die 4 weeks ago so maybe it was him..I don’t know I just wanted to share my story. Hopefully it means he is a peace now or maybe good luck for me.

funnybonz's avatar

My mother and i had an agreement that whoever died first would send the other a cardinal to tell them they were “okay”. In May 2011 moments before mom passed i whispered in her ear, don’t forget to send me a cardinal. Our definition of “okay” was that you are at peace and you live on in spirit. After her death every morning 5 am-8 am I sat on my porch writing in my journal and talking to the little sparrows that visit my feeder 3 ft away. Five days after her funeral i sat and happened to look in my Japanese Maple(low branches 8ft tall tree) that is 5 ft from where i sat. There sat a male cardinal that stared at me for approx 10 seconds. He was at eye level and just stared. i am an avid birder and wild birds do not have tendancy to stare at you, This i knew was my sign wow what a sense of peace came over me. I spoke to neighbors and nobody has ever seen a cardinal in the neighborhood as far back 15yrs ago, i asked 4 people. It was moms favorite bird and in 12 yrs of feeding birds at her house, around the corner from mine, she’d never seen a cardinal. I haven’t seen one since.

sbs1020's avatar

My grandfather died a little over 8 years ago, when I was about 10 years old. He was very young, barely 60. He suffered from a diease called Scleroderma, a rare thing. The last few days that he was alive he always requested to be brought outside with his binoculars. He would sit outside and speak about how a Red Cardinal would come and sit right in front of him on the fence. Sadly, whenever he was getting into the ambulance a Red Cardinal was sitting right beside the ambulance. Whenever the ambulance left with him, the cardinal sat there and looked towards us for quite a while. After he died, everyone from our family was being visited by a beautiful, bright Red Cardinal. Almost ten years later I still always see that same Red Cardinal in our backyard.
My grandma decided to sell her house this July to move to Florida. This was a house that my grandpa had built. Whenever we locked up her house and handed the keys to the realtor a Red Cardinal was in the middle of the road looking towards the house. And whenever we got to Florida we visited a house we were interested in and in the backyard was once again a big red cardinal. Needless to say, she bought the house.
And I’m getting a tattoo of a red cardinal this coming up week. To show the beauty of the cardinal, and to express my love for my grandpa.

monkeydo's avatar

Start out my morning by almost taking out a hawk with the windshield of my jeep. once home, I hear a loud noise. turns out a male cardinal has flown hard into the french doors. just as i’m about to go out & check on him, a hawk swoops down & lands on the grill right outside my back door. (I’ve only seen a hawk one other time in my yard) When the hawk sees me he flies away. We take the dead bird with us for burial, when we head out to a favorite river access area. As my dog & I are walking the trail there i come across a pile of male cardinal feathers that i did not see on the first passing. We go bet the bird & bury him adjacent to the pile of feathers. Heading home, the sun is setting and the colors of the setting sun & clouds echo those of the cardinal feathers. Surely this is not all pure coincidence…

windimera's avatar

My dad was dieing from cancer. My family and I did not know what hour, minute, or second he would pass on. That was the year of 2006. It was a great year of hardship for my dad and for my family who had to watch helplessly as there was no treatment that would help him and he refused to be part of Vanderbilt’s trials on people with the 4th stage of cancer. At that point I was crest fallen, I knew then that only God could take this infirmity from my dad. I prayed all the time in tears and sorrows for what my dad was suffering. I was averaging 4 hours asleep a day as I was the main person who cared for him and knew how to give medications. My mom was with me and together we held each other together. There was nothing too great for my dad. I was very strict with his care. It had to be over 100% at all times. I had two other sisters, they took care of him together with my instructions that I took from his doctors and nurse. They helped out those 4 hours that I slept. I had all of myself involved in the care of my dad. I gave him spirtual guidance and listened to him when he wanted to talk. He was the closest to God that I had ever witnessed a person be. And so came the end of his life on this plain of existence. The day was January 1st, 2007. His body had been shutting down for the past week. The family had gathered as he ask, the churches brother’s and sister’s in Christ were also present. I felt that I had done all I could, I was not remorseful because I had attended to all his needs that is humanly possible. I knew his crossing was near and only he could travel that path. I was out on the carport speaking with my husband. The day was dreary and it looked as it might snow. All the snow birds were out. Then I noticed a gathering of cardinals in a tree out in the yard. There beaks were turned toward my mom and dad’s house. I commented on it and others heard me and looked. Someone had ask me to come into the house but I stayed for a few more minutes because the beauty of the birds had caught my attention and I really needed a breather. Suddenly out of the blue this great urgency came over me that I had to go to my dad’s bed and be with him. I looked up and the large tree with many branches were covered in red cardinal birds. The one at the top looked directly at the house. The urgency over took me and I practically ran into the house. I was almost too my dad when I heard my mother call my name. How she knew I was behind her I don’t know. But she told me to come to my father’s bed where my 2 sisters were gathered as he requested. I hurried to his bed. I seen him take his last 3 breaths then he stopped breathing. His soul was leaving. We waited 2 minutes and checked for a pulse. There was none. My dad had passed away January 1st, 2007 at 3:34pm. I made the necessary calls and was completely numb and in shock. Later, I went outside and all the cardinals in the great tree were gone. All I seen was bluejays. I still felt like it was going to snow but it didn’t and for the rest of that day I seen no cardinals. It was like the cardinals were not only messengers of hope for God’s people but they were used as a vessel for the angels. My dad had spoke of seeing his angel on different occassions. The angel was a female. He called her “she”. I have thought about that day many times over the years and I know that God spoke to me through his heavenly hosts and that Dad is now alive in a special place of peace. I miss him but every time I see the gathering of cardinals I remember that day and remember that all is well. I know in my heart, mind, and spirit that free will is given to humans and because of that not everything happens perfectly. But there is hope and I am thankful and humbled for that message always.

Thanks for the special time it took you to read my true story. May God Bless you all in ways that you need. Amen.

GinAgin's avatar

I had an experience with cardinals this morning (hence, I found this site!) It was my deceased mother’s b-day yesterday and so, of course, I thought of her a great deal all day. Then, last night, I actually dreamt of her – and my deceased dad – in a very realistic fashion. The dream was not particularly meaningful, but it was lovely to see and hear them again. I awoke feeling good about that “visit.” I live on the water and my deck looks out over the harbor. When I walked into the living room, coffee in hand, I saw two cardinals: a bright red male and his less colorful lady! Now I’ve seen cardinals on my deck before, but they are always so skittish (I even have trouble snapping photos of them because they flew away so quickly). These two have stayed all morning, hanging out and enjoying themselves…not at all skittish. I believe this is a visit from my parents, and I am awed and happy.

mandyw's avatar

Me and my mom were walking on the campus of Nebraska Wesleyan and we saw a red cardinal and we walked up to it and we were looking at it and it just disappeared in thin air and we looked around because we didn’t believe it and the campus is known for being haunted just wanted to ask if anyone knows or has had this experience?

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Gino4444's avatar

Last week I saw two dead Cardinals on the side of the road about 2 miles apart as I was walking. Today, I had two red cardinals visit me outside my window in the living room. Any meaning to this?

kateel's avatar

We have recently made the (very) painful decision to have our dog euthanized. We have an appointment with the vet this afternoon to see what they think, but I am fairly certain it will happen today. I have been so upset and sad about this for the last few days. I have never had to make the decision to have a pet put down, and I am feeling so sad about it. I got up early this morning and went for a walk to try to clear my head. When I came home, I sat down on the couch and a bright red cardinal flew up to my window and perched on a chair outside for a while. Something about it felt very calming. I did a search to see if there was any link and I came up with this post. Thank you.

mirandacarby's avatar

My boyfriend of 8+years and I have been having problems in our relationship, so he has been staying at his sister’s. I took our son over to visit and we stayed the night. About 5am or sometime around dawn the next morning I was awakened by a pecking sound at the window- it was a bright red male cardinal. It would peck, stop and tilting its head look into the window and then would fly away only to return a few minutes later to begin again. This went on for about three hours. Then, later in the afternoon, I went to lay our son down for a nap and fell asleep with him and was again awakened by the same cardinal pecking on the window. I always heard that a bird pecking on your window or entering your house was a sign of death. Can anyone shed any light on the myths or spiritual beliefs behind such an incident?

BellaCalamtia's avatar

Before my ex lover died, I saw a cardinal on my windowsill,
sitting there,...watching me as i dressed for church. (easter)
I wanted to DIE SO BAD that day i went to church to speak to the pastor.
so he could talk me out of it. this feeling of wanting to
commit suicide hit me so F***ing hard.
I have never wanted to die so bad.

That night my ex broke into a pharmacy and stole pills..t
ook as many as he could. cops found him. took his ass to jail..
and he died on their watch. on SUCIDE watch non the less.
I felt like it might have been maybe his spirit guide warning me? or mine?

queen3's avatar

My sons senior year in high school he began seeing a red cardinal outside his bedroom window, when he graduated and went to college he would see the red cardinal and so much so that he started calling it his guardian angel. I will also see the red cardinal and if I ever saw it when my son wasn’t around I would call him to make sure everything was alright. Well my son was murdered this summer the last day of school for summer break. He was completing his sophomore year in college. I found this forum because today as I opened my blinds two cardinals landed on my porch which was unusual when we have only seen one in the past. My son has been gone almost 6 months and I am wondering what this means.

krjones61's avatar

Today my wife seen a cardinal pass by a window at her work place. she called me and she was crying , I asked her what was wrong? She stated that a carinal flew by her window , so I stated why were you crying her reponse was that whenever a cardinal passes by your window in the Christmas season that the things you were asking Jesus for would come ture! Now she understands that bird or no bird Jesus is able to do anything but fail! But she strrongly belives that this is a comformation of blessing asked in Jesus name that will be forfilled! KJ61

Sundayg123's avatar

My dad died last year on my Birthday, which coincidentally is on Christmas. I have had a pretty hard year dealing with the loss of the most important man in my life. Over the holidays I finally got myself to bring home his ashes from the funeral home. I have not seen one thing from my dad since the day he died and trust me I have been looking :) Today while I’m cleaning my kitchen I see a red flash out of the corner of my eye and bang a bird hits the window I rushed outside to find this cardinal head first stuck in the deep snow. I pulled him out and he was still alive, so I brought him inside. I took several pictures of him today and they are on my facebook page (Sunday Gendron- VT)..for all the NON Believers…I seriously cannot argue with the life after death issue…I have been so happy today thinking that maybe my dad is trying to send a sign. The only bad part is the bird didn’t make it. But I got some beautiful pics while he was alive.

lmanderson's avatar

My only son passed away 2 years ago at the age of 20.He passed from a undetected heart disease called cardiomyopathy.I always ask him to send me a sign of a red or blue bird in our tree out my kitchen window.I see 1 at least 3 times a week.I know this is a sign from my loving son.It has always been a red bird he sends.Im heartbroken forever without my son.But when i see this bird i smile cause i know he sent it.

jenbrink's avatar

I heard my Mom say that when I was a little kid, cardinals mean death is coming to someone close. My husband and I are sitting here in our office/home, and there are over 15 Cardnals sitting on the fence and branches outside our window in the snow. Beautiful sight! I told him death is near, he told me I was nuts. Hopefully I am just NUTS!

Pamelyn's avatar

My mom passed unexpectedly 3 weeks ago. She’d gone in for what was supposed to be a very low risk procedure and wound up on life support for 2 weeks before she passed from heart failure. My family is extremely close, and we are devastated by the loss. I was at my parents’ house this afternoon, sitting outside and crying for mom, when I saw a cardinal on a tree not 10 yards away from me. I blinked and it was gone, but I immediately felt a sensation of warmth on my heart, and I inexplicably felt more at peace than I have in weeks. Afterwards, I googled the significance of cardinal sightings and found this site. Cardinals were my mom’s favorite birds, but we rarely see them here. I feel sure it was her, letting me know she’s ok.

Here’s where it gets even more interesting, at least to me – This evening I was telling my ex-husband about my experience (he is still very much part of our family and loves my mom dearly) when he told me about a cardinal he’s been seeing every day at work for the last month, beginning around the same time my mom went in for surgery. The cardinal has been knocking on the window of his office every day. I know in my heart these 2 events are connected. My mom was also my best friend and I have been feeling completely lost without her. Finding this site and reading the other responses has been amazing. I believe my mom gave me a sign that she’s ok and with us, and I’ll be with her again someday.

Prisy's avatar

Wow. What a delight to read these stories as I have my own too. My brother passed 6 months 3 days after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer on Jan 16, 2012. He moved back in with our parents and spent his last days triyng to get a good picture of the magnificent red bird. But; alas, it eluded him. 12 hours after his passing I hear my mother outside whispering for me. Come here, come here…it’s Andy, I just know it is. I proceeded to take 9 pictures over 8 minutes. He still visits her and I love that. Twice on my trips home he’s sat on the window sill of the kitchen window as if in a silent message to my Mom to be happy, Prisy is coming home. Well, it’s that’s the message my Mom gets and that’s all that matters. Love you Andy, and Yeah, I know…you love me more.

Bkerney21's avatar

I truly believe that the cardinal bird holds a meaning of loved ones in the afterlife. My father passed away in October of 2006 from cancer. The following summer my son and I were in the backyard swimming, when my son looks up in the tree and points up and says “look mom, it’s a cardinal bird.” You have to understand that my son at the time was barely five, and to my knowledge, had know idea what a cardinal bird looked like. So I asked him “and how do you know what a cardinal bird looks like?” And he answered “Popo (what my dads name to him was) told me at the family home (what he referred to as the funeral home.)” He then told me that my dad told him this so he can look for them, and that he will send them as a gift to show his love. It was a year later, that my step mom and I were going on a trip, and she informed me that she had seen a psychic. Now many can believe what they want about psychics, but this one was interesting to say the least. The psychic gave a description of my father, (and any psychic will be willing to give a vague description for the sake of entertainment to make a couple of bucks) then went on to tell my step mom that my dad was sending cardinal birds to her as gifts to say I love you. When she told me this, my heart almost stopped. I had never told her what my son had said… Some would say I’m over thinking this, but knowing these things, it’s hard to ignore that the cardinal bird has some link to the afterlife, and I do not believe in coincidences, not now.

curiousmind's avatar

My grandmother was in hospice and as I was visiting her and holding her hand, my son called me from home. He told me that there was a red cardinal very close to the house and it was staring at him and not moving. He thought it was hurt and went over to it and started petting it. His sister came over to the bird and was petting it also. After about 10 minutes of sitting with this bird and petting it, the bird flew away and appeared uninjured. (My neighbor was outside and verified their story) My grandmother died 3 hours later. I am pretty sure that cardinals do not like to be touched by humans. I am sure it was her spirit starting to leave her body and wanting to be at her favorite place again.

ShadowHill's avatar

I was praying for my husband this morning….he is partially paralyzed for 7+ years now…. and
when I looked up there was the most brilliant red Cardinal sitting on my clothes pole peering in
the window….Now I need to clarify, I have bird feeders hanging from the house….but this
Cardinal (a permanent resident of the pine tree out back) sat there and stared at me for the longest time…..I really felt he was there for a purpose other than just breakfast.

earthmummy's avatar

Wow, I’m so glad I finally looked this up on the net. Just before Christmas 2004, I was wondering what to give my Dad, for a Christmas gift that year, he pretty much had all he needed and wanted, he was 78 yrs. old. I took a nap after housecleaning and had the most beautiful vivid dream of my mother in Heaven. My mom had perished in a car accident when I was 2 yrs. old, this happened right before Christmas, she had been Christmas shopping. My father had never stopped grieving, every Christmas was a sad time for him; he and my mom had been high school sweethearts and married after graduation. I dreamed I was walking with my mom, high in the mountains overlooking the picturesque valley my dad lived in. This was a hike through a Heavenly realm though, so all of the wooded trails were vibrant with color, everything shimmered with life, life force. Mom stopped close to the top of the mountain where a small clearing of wood allowed us to look down at the peaceful village in the snow where my dad lived. Just then, the most beautiful, shimmering, outrageously vibrant red cardinal flew in front of us and landed in a tree branch overlooking the idyllic peaceful scene. I was overwhelmed with the vibrancy, beauty and peacefulness the cardinal brought to this already Heavenly place of beauty and life. When I woke, I knew I had really been in Heaven with my mom. I later went shopping for Christmas presents and in the last store I visited, I found a display of the most vibrant red, artisan bisque pottery, cardinal wind chimes. There were various beautiful cardinal forms; all with lovely metal chimes hanging down. I bought them all and made presents of them to all my family, giving Dad 2 big cardinal chimes for both trees at his back patio. On Christmas I explained the Heavenly dream I’d had, that the cardinal had seemed to be a promise of Heaven; the life force it brought with it was indescribably beautiful…I still cry when thinking of its’ beauty. My dad passed away from lung cancer, the following Valentines Day. No one had known Dad had cancer, his lungs hadn’t hurt, he said, he’d just gotten dizzy and started falling down. My sister asked me what picture should we have engraved on his stone along with the beautiful epitaph inscribed…I said, “a red cardinal”, of course.

two4tee15's avatar

Two Red Cardinals
During this time of Thanksgiving, I find myself missing my parents. It’s the first Thanksgiving with both of them gone. I have, however, found a way to connect with them that is truly meaningful.
It was March 2011; I had gone for a walk through the woods near my home. After just returning from burying my dad, I was feeling sad, tearful. Suddenly, a robin flew close by my head immediately getting my attention. It landed in a tree about 20 feet up ahead on the trail. As I got near, it flew once again up ahead another 20 feet or so; then again, over-and-over, never venturing further into the woods, but remaining on the trail. I began to cry but suddenly felt comforted.
At his funeral, I spoke of the “Gifts my dad was leaving behind”. The virtues he instilled in us through the way he lived his life; the forgiveness in his heart, knowing the difference between right and wrong, the self-discipline it takes to succeed, the responsibility to his family, his courage to face life’s struggles, his work ethic, and his faith in God. How was I to know another Gift was yet to come—a way to connect with him and his spirit, even after he was gone!
A few years ago, dad came to visit me in Virginia. He suggested I place a bird-feeder in the back yard. He said it would teach me a lot about life. I complied and he was right. It was through watching these birds that I thought of my dad, the joy he got out of bird-watching and ultimately the realization of the cycle of life.
As dad’s health took a rapid decline, my sister put together a beautiful video, a tribute to him. “Broken Wing” by LeAnn Rimes opened the video. In addition to the photos of family and friends, she inserted photos of Birds, Hands, and Clouds. Birds in flight, in their nests, feeding their young. Hands symbolic of the touch of his hand on our faces, the lives he touched, his hands in prayer. Clouds in the sky, remind us that his place is in Heaven now; reassurance that he is there, watching over us. Rascal Flatts song, “I Won’t Let Go” was part of this beautiful video tribute. We did not want to let go, but were once again reminded of the cycle of life.
The evening of mother’s death, a red cardinal appeared in the small tree just outside her window. Only a few feet from her head, it faced her. My sister and I watched and immediately began to cry. We knew “who” sent this special bird, this Gift, at this particular time! Mom passed away only a few hours later.
What a Gift to us that in our time of sorrow, this cardinal was there to comfort us! It was at that moment that we realized it was ok to “let her go”, that mom would soon be in heaven with him. It was no coincidence that only two years prior, Two Red Cardinals had been placed on dad’s tombstone.

I am thankful that God chose mom and dad, as our parents. I’m thankful for the time we had together, for the love, care, and kindness that they provided. Though I miss them terribly, I am thankful for these opportunities, these Gifts, to “be with them once again”.

rosiev46's avatar

My first experience with a red Cardinal was over 20yrs ago. My friends boyfriend died suddenly. He didn’t show up to work and on the third day we went to his apartment. We found him dead. His family had to come from out of town. I had space at my house so I offered them a place till the funeral was girlfriend lives on our basement apt. So this kept us all close together. He was a Montreal Canadian fan..and fittengly was buried in his hockey jersey. Now, everything is over. A couple of weeks passed..every morning I would get up. Go downstairs and a Red Cardinal was tapping on my window. I new right away it was unusual…every morning he was there tapping saying good morning. By the end of the friend came up for coffee..she said..your not going to believe what has been happening…every morning at 6:30 a Red Cardinal is tapping on my window…I said…every morning a Red Cardinal was tapping on my window by the front door…my husband came in from work… We excitedly started to tell him our story… He interrupted us to say…u will never guess what keeps happening every morning when I come downstairs…I said ..what…he said a Red Cardinal has been tapping at the window…we were shocked…now we realized…this was really our friend saying good morning and Thank you…I have been recently got g through had with my parents health… For the last 6 months a Red Cardinal has showed its self to me…and I can feel that its not just a bird flying by…these have got my heart racing… I can feel so.wthing very different…until one came after I posted a prayer. It was right outside my door when I got up…its now happened twice…and I feel its a message…I’m so happy…cause I have been able to share this beautiful story…To all the believers.. Its a message…I hear them loud and clear. It feels like nothing I have ever experienced. It makes me smile too.

skinnylittleblonde's avatar

But, what might it mean if there is a dead cardinal in my yard?

Justagirl's avatar

In my experience, the Cardinal showed up after my Brother passed. In different ways. They started flying in my Mother’s backyard in her trees in FL where he passed.

Then a week later when I was in Church in TX, Our Pastor was saying a blessing for my Brother in his opening Prayer and as I wept, I looked up, and right in front of my eyes, the elderly lady sitting directly in front of me, had on a sweater with a bright Red Cardinal on the back of it!! In April!

My Brother never liked seeing me cry, I believe he was trying to tell me he was ok, and that he was at Peace.

baujea's avatar

I was looking out my window and I noticed a cardinal on my tree outside, beautiful bird, 2 weeks later my firend’s mom dies. I know cardinals have something to do with death or sickness, but now I am a believer. I just saw one the other day again ( and it is spring now, not winter, which I know they are active in the winter) I learned a day after I say the cardinal that my step-mom is in the hospital, the thing is she is back and forth in the hospital but this time its worse and the Dr. says she won’t live past 60, she is 59 this year. Could this be a sign she is on her way out? I don’t know I will talk to my dad today hopefully. I also saw a red-winged black bird for the first time today which provoked me to look up the meaning of that! Lol It means “Life changes” which is true, lots going on now. I know assoicate red cardinals with death. We will see. Prayers.

lakers1218's avatar

My Dad passed away on 1–9-11 right in from of me of a heart attack. It was very quick. I was devastated. It snowed 8 inches that day. My whole back yard was filled with red cardinals that whole day and week. I mean at least 30–40 red cardinals. It was incredibly beautiful against the snow. I took a picture. I wish I could share it on this page but don’t that I can. I live in the same home that he passed away in. As I type this, there is a cardinal outside the window of this room sitting on a nest of eggs. This nest is very near the room my Dad passed away in. I am so glad to see all these posts. I feel a connection to these beautiful birds that watch over my house and bring me comfort when I am missing my best friend, my Dad.

LaraL's avatar

I have had a red cardinal tapping on my window the last 20 minutes. He acted like he wanted in – or my attention and he is now jumping up and down on the railing and now back up on the window tapping. I keep saying WHAT? And then I am worried – I someone going to die? Or is this someone coming to visit? My mom died 5 years ago too young – my dad last August and my stepfather last November. My husband’s grandma just came back from the hospital havng a fall but she is fine. However, she is 95 years old. Our border collie is 15 years old – my Thoroughbred is 25. Everyone seems fine. I will say a prayer for them all! But something I will add – throughout this past winter, which was a rough cold one, I would let my chickens out to move around during the day and put them in at night. When I would go to put them in (they were usually in already but the door open, a cardinal or two would be in the coop and they would pretty easily let me catch them and take them out to set free. Sometimes they did not fly away when I first opened my hands – they would stand on my hands for a while. Happened one and off for weeks. It is a real sensation to catch a wild bird and hold him.

susiec's avatar

My experience is slightly different. My mom passed away about a month ago at age 89. She was very tired and had been telling us she was ready to go. As I was talking to her gently in her last minutes of life. She was telling me there was something in her way. When I asked her what it was she said “redbirds”. She smiled ever so faintly. In just a few minutes she told me they were now gone. She became unconscious shortly after that and passed away soon after. I had turned my cell phone on record to try and catch some last words. When I let my daughter listen to it she thinks the way mama said it sounded like the redbirds were leading her to heaven. I’ve just now decided to try to find some meaning to this and could not believe all that I have found.

Sinclair5's avatar

Yesterday, while visiting my parents, we were talking about my great grandmother. She passed away over 25 years, at the age of 100. Her character and spirit were undeniable, as she was larger than life. Strong, intelligent and witty. She had 14 children and 144 grandchildren, great-grand children and great-great grandchildren. She knew each and everyone of us. So while I was sitting in my parents sun room, we began reminiscing about her when suddenly this cardinal sat right on the window’s ledge. The window was open and the bird was less than three feet from my father. The cardinal just sat there and stared at us just like it was part of the conversation. I have no doubt it was her, just coming to say hello!!

debbie53's avatar

I can’t believe other people have experienced the “Red Cardinal’. I am a little worried about dying now that I have heard some of the stories, Well my story started a few years ago I was renting a house and there was always this Red Bird around and one day a feeling came over me that it was my mother who passed away when I was 9 years old.This bird was awesome just came and sat on my fence when ever I was in the back yard. I moved into a new house and kinda forgot about the bird until one day I was sitting out back and there it was !! my bird aka mommy. I really enjoy watching her soar around and my dog is trying to figure out who I am talking to !! I decided it would be nice to get a bird feeder and feed mommy so I went to the store and got the bird feeder and put it by the window in my living room so I could see her, well I was watching for about 3 hours and finally she found the feeder. I was sooo excited I called all my friends to tell them. I have had a few other encounters with the bird. I was on my way to pick up my grandson from school and a car was coming head on in my lane , thought I was gona have a head on wreck but the car went back in
it’s lane. When I pulled in to the school a red bird flew in front of my car, I said thanks mommy !!! About a week ago I decided to stop taking a medicine that I am on, well I was reading that I shouldn’t just stop it, so I said mom if I should take a pill fly into the window. Sure as heck she came and flew into the window I nearly had a stroke !!! the first thing I did the next morning was take the pill. Oh by the way mommy has a new boyfriend !!! It makes me feel good that they will have food for the rest of there lives .

LA's avatar

I have been sick since October 9. I have been on two antibiotics and now on an inhaler. I caught my 2 year old grandson’s cough and it doesn’t seem to want to go away.

I do not smoke, am 59 years old and went to lay down this afternoon across my bed. I was awakened by one male cardinal pecking at my one bedroom window. I found that to be odd. I dozed back off and at the other window in my bedroom there he was again pecking away…only this time he had his mate with him.

After reading all of these posts….yes, I am scared. I am not ready to die !!!

ezra37's avatar

I have had some interesting experiences with cardinals. My girlfriend committed suicide several months back. I’m a Christian and my first worry was fear that she would be judged for that decision. I knew she was a believer but she suffered from anxiety and addiction. Anyways I asked God to show me a butterfly if she was okay. I really needed to know. The same day I prayed that a large Monarch butterfly landed right next to me, flew away and then came back by me.

A few weeks passed, and I started to wonder if it was possible for me to be with her again. I love this girl more than words can express. I ask God to show me a cardinal as a sign that it would be possible. I just thought of something that would stand out so I couldn’t miss it. A few days pass and the day before my birthday I walk outside and in the bushes right outside my door I see two cardinals. A male and a female. It took my breath away and any lingering doubts about my faith were quickly gone. There is definitely something else after this life.

I’ve seen cardinals a few times since then and it is always at important moments. Once when I finally brought myself to start getting rid of some of her belongings. It was hard but right after I threw them out I see two cardinals. Her birthday was a couple of weeks ago and two cardinals landed outside my window on that day and just kind of hung out for a while.

I really don’t see cardinals any other times and the couple of times I did see them I always saw them in pairs. Over the past weekend however I noticed a couple hanging outside my window two days in a row. This morning I get up, go outside and in the tree by my house is a lone male cardinal. It makes me wonder if she is trying to tell me something.

RobinRedbird's avatar

A cardinal has been following me literally for the last year….I’ve seen it so many places now… can I figure out the message?

ddllss1122's avatar

My Dad passed 13 days ago. We went straight from Hospice to my sister’s house. While her and I struggled to get his obituary written….My Mom saw a huge male Cardinal land on the window sill. Inches from her face. It was a red color that we’ve never seen. BRIGHT RED. Three days later a cardinal landed on her kitchen window sill. This was the day of my Father’s Memorial Service. I really think my Dad was trying to tell her that he was OK. They had been married 66 years. It actually comforts me and Mom also..

widow_wilson's avatar

My husband passed away in May. The first time I visited the Cremation Services office, a cardinal was on the ground standing right in front of where I was trying to park. He did not budge. A week after my husband’s memorial service his sister and three helpers came to my house to help with the neglected yardwork. At one point she asked what kind of bird she was hearing; I told her it was a cardinal and I looked for it up in the trees until I spotted it. It flew and hopped from branch to branch until it was almost over top of us and it watched while we worked. The day of the internment of my husband’s ashes, I saw a bird in the trees behind and overhead of the minister as he spoke my husband’s service. Yes, it was a cardinal and he sat on that branch until the minister finished speaking. A few weeks later, a friend took me to a quilt show and went on ahead of me while I chatted with someone about a particular quilt. When I caught up with my friend, she said you are going to freak! Ahead of me I could see a quilt with poppies (my father’s sign). The quilts were displayed on an angle like a zigzag formation. The quilt that was the “zig” to my dad’s “zag” was all cardinals!! My dad and husband, both being ex-military, had been the best of friends in life. In the morning, I awake to the sound of a cardinal outside my window someplace. I believe he is still with me in my heart.

jzdyer's avatar

My mother passed away in April. As I was cleaning out her house yesterday, and left a door open for a cross breeze, a female cardinal flew in. I discovered it when I heard fluttering by a picture window – this beautiful bird was just trying to get out. I opened a window and gently coaxed it onto a towel I was holding and set it free. Readying the house for sale has been a very emotional time for me and my siblings, and I think this symbol from my mom was saying it’s ok – she understands, she watches over us, and she loves us.

Tinah's avatar

My brother passed away August 10th 2012 my grandmother had just passed in January of that year. My brothers death just killed me he and I was so close and he was 38 he died of a drug overdose. He batteled it a long time the addiction that is he had overdosed and nearly died 3 times before. But anyway I started seeing one a lot I either never paid attention to it before or something else. One day I was browsing FB and seen the saying about the cardinal and then it hit me like a ton of bricks. I have grieved my heart out over him. I just lost my dad back in May and it has hurt me so bad he died in a prison hospital so we couldn’t say goodbye and I see cardinals all around all the time. One day not long ago I was having such a bad day I was crying as I am now writing this and out of the corner of my eye I seen one fly by and instantly knew it was daddy. And I found know he and my brother both are in a better place but I miss and love them so much,

JeffT67's avatar

My wife’s father just past away before Christmas and we live in Texas and her dad lived with my wife’s sister in Columbus,Ohio. Several weeks before he passed a female cardinal kept coming each day pecking on the window. The day he passed the cardinal stopped appearing. On Christmas day two cardinals came to the window and you guessed it the second one was a Male! It’s too coincidental for this to just be an accident. I thought just in case i would go search online to see if others have seen this. I realize there could be some prank get online and make up stuff but being a christian I believe God may have used the cardinals to show comfort to the loved ones. I am becoming a believer in it and will continue to follow this

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Atlcam88's avatar

So I’m very spiritually lost for words at the moment… I have never maliciously caused harm or death to any animal EVER… But this morning driving to work I’m singing in my car enjoying the Suns warmth with my kids in the back seat when out of no where a red Cardinal flies right into my car! It took my breath away and for the next 20 min I dare not say a word…. I know that cardinals are symbolic and I have not had a loss for a year or 2 now… I’m not sure what this means as tomorrow I test for a promotion…. Does anyone have any clue what this could mean? I have collected the poor chaps body to bury but spiritually I am distraught…

Beverlymcgovern's avatar

I was awoken by a female Cardinal pecking at my window. Curious to the whole meaning. I know it’s something spiritual because when lived in Florida a bird flew in my house and lead us to the kitchen window.My son, 3 at the time pointing at her. I ran to get my camera. I knew this was a sign of someone was about to pass and that very night I get a call my dad had passed away( in Missiouri). This was in ‘96 then. About in 2008 or so I take a pic of this photo with my phone to put it on fb. When I enlarged it, it took form of an angel, looking down at my little boy. I will try to post the pic. Here.

D_cherokee's avatar

My Father passed away last Oct.. I am setting here at 9am with my back door open and a Cardinal appears in the back yard. I almost never see Cardinals here. Today is my birthday, I think it’s a sign from my father wishing me a happy birthday.

sharonehill's avatar

I totally believe a cardinal is a symbol of afterlife. I have had cardinals around my house for several years (a lot of family deaths too) My father in law used to come over for coffee on saturday. He used to comment on the Cardinals and called them red birds. Ever since he passed away a cardinal has been pecking at my windows . He will go from window to window, sometimes pecking, sometimes fluttering his wings, and even hanging on my screens (which he is doing right now). Everyone knows about him. We call him “bud the red bird” after my late father in law. What is really fascinating is that now we have up to 6 males and several females in our yard all at once. Seven family members have passed over the years and I believe these birds are their spirits. When my dad passed away 14 years ago there was an white Robin that hung around for a while. Only “bud” is at my windows everyday , especially on the weekends which is when my father in law used to come over. Kind of makes me think they are just letting me know they are OK

Jean526's avatar

My mom died at Hospice house 3 days ago. I have always heard about cardinals and death but did not think much about it until now. We were all called in to her bedside that morning. We saw a cardinal at the bird feeder then it came to the window of my mom’s room and sat on the ledge looking in. It did this several times and then left. My Aunt that was sitting bedside with mom stated it was my grandmother letting us know she was waiting for mom.

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