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The eagle represents both mundane, militarist power and higher spiritual callings, depending on where it appears or who beholds it. Military and imperial graves often feature one-headed or two headed eagles as a nationalist emblem (e.g. The Great Seal of the United States).

The place of the eagle, suspended between the earth and space, gives it status as an intermediary or spirit guide. European and Native American ideas have, in this century, fused to create a mythological being not unlike an angel.

Photo: St. Bartholomew's Cemetery, near Escondido, California
Copyright 1999 by Joel GAzis-SAx