The Meaning of a Butterfly Sighting

An image of a pink butterfly floating across the sky. A tree stands in the background, which is colored a dark teal.

The Meaning of a Butterfly Appearing

Hummingbirds, butterflies, and even ladybugs have long been recognized by many as messengers from Spirit. Like the male red cardinal’s bright red plumage, the butterfly comes in an array of hard-to-miss colors that will make you sit up and take notice! Often, to get your attention, they will persistently fly around you or within your view. This may cause some people to ponder: what exactly is the meaning of a butterfly sighting? Well, these butterflies generally want you to see them because they are most likely a visitor sent by someone on the other side or a message from the Universe. So, when discussing the meaning of a butterfly sighting, it’s important to acknowledge all the different things that they might be trying to communicate.

Related: Flying in Your Dreams

Wings That Carry Whispers From Spirit

If you believe that butterflies are messengers from Spirit, then you are likely seeing them at a time when you were speaking to or simply thinking of your loved one on the other side. In this instance, the meaning of a butterfly sighting could be that your deceased loved one has something to tell you. Perhaps they sense that you need their guidance. People often look to the spirit realm for guidance, as those who have crossed over often possess wisdom and knowledge that people of the earthly realm do not.

Since butterflies don’t speak a human language, how is it that they can communicate with you? One possible meaning of a butterfly sighting is that your loved ones are present. It’s not an actual spirit who has temporarily hijacked a butterfly’s body.

Related: The Spiritual Meaning Behind a Fly

Manifesting a Butterfly

So, why might spirits send a butterfly rather than coming themselves? Unfortunately, it takes a lot of energy for a spirit to manifest themself, and even if they did, it wouldn’t last very long. Besides, how would you react if a spirit manifested right in front of you? For many, that’s a scary sight! If given the option, they would prefer a visit from a butterfly instead. R

Bright Colors

Spirits pick brightly colored things of beauty because they know they’ll be hard to miss. Could you ignore an orange butterfly fluttering around your head or landing on something right before your eyes? These types of messengers seem to get people’s immediate attention; however, the communication part comes directly from Spirit. It’s a psychic connection of sorts that brings you peace and contentment.

Related: Aura Color Meanings Explained

The Symbolism of the Butterfly

Butterfly sightings symbolize transformation and resurrection. According to, “… pictures of butterflies can be found throughout almost every hospice. This symbol is also used extensively by many grief counselors, spiritual centers, and support groups for the bereaved.” Even people who have never mentioned their own butterfly sighting in life will send these winged messengers to say that they have reached the other side. What better messenger than the butterfly to let loved ones know that they have transitioned from an earthly being to a spiritual being and that they are well?

Traditionally, in Japan, a white butterfly is seen as the soul of someone who is no longer living in the earthly realm. Similar beliefs exist across many cultures around the globe.

Related: The Meaning Behind a Butterfly Tattoo

Butterflies as Spirit Guides

Many of us feel the connection between the human and animal kingdoms, viewing animals as guides who enlighten us and who provide us with courage, sensitivity, empathy, and the many other attributes we need to summon at one time or another. Whether or not you feel that the butterfly is your personal spirit animal, you can still summon its strength when you’re going through something that requires change or when things around you are changing and transforming.

Change occurs often. It might be a move, a change in jobs, or even the loss of a loved one. A butterfly sighting can help comfort people and help them accept that change isn’t always a bad thing, even when it isn’t necessarily wanted. After all, change may not be easy, but it is inevitable. The meaning of a butterfly sighting can be as simple as a reminder that no one is in this alone.

Related: The Meaning of Seeing a Hummingbird

Seeking Guidance

If you find yourself feeling lost, seeking guidance, or just looking for inspiration, you can call upon your angels and guides or simply ask a loved one for a sign. You may or may not see evidence of them hearing you right away (it’s not like Chinese take-out), but you will receive a response. And when you do get your answer, you’ll know it! A butterfly sighting will confirm your connection. The meaning of a butterfly sighting can be varied and unique to the individual, but regardless, a visit from Spirit in any form can provide you with inspiration and excitement. Most importantly, it can leave you feeling content, connected, and loved.

If you’re interested in our other animal sighting articles, you can find them here.

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27 thoughts on “The Meaning of a Butterfly Sighting

  1. Psychic Delphine

    Butterfly’s represent Metamorphosis and rebirth.
    A new chapter on your life’s timeline.
    Shedding the old self and creating the new.
    I have seen Butterflies when I am going through a positive change of growth, spiritually, physically and mentally. Almost like a soul resurrection/ascension.
    They represent liberation, freedom and prosperity. They are messengers of hope and positivity. The Red Cardinal Butterfly is especially symbolic of this.

  2. Chloe

    I got into a huge argument with my parents and I just decided to draw the line, I couldn’t do it. Being treated unfairly apart from my siblings for years and them just not caring how much it effects me finally took its toll. I walked out of the house and sat by the back road just feeling empty and alone and feeling all of the past experiences flow back. I googled the most painless ways to commit suicide ignoring all the signs asking me to call a helpline, I was done. As I’m reading up on a website telling how certain medicines can help achieve what I want, a beautiful monarch butterfly appears out of nowhere (it’s June and in Florida it’s really hot outside and we haven’t seen butterflies in our area in close to two years) and it gets really close and flies all around me and then hovers above our fence and flies away into the distance. I was baffled and at a loss for words because this little butterfly just..appeared. I remembered hearing something about butterflies being a sign of something good a couple years back so I ran a quick Google search and all the answers were the same. A loved one is watching over you and you’re not alone. I just broke down. Ten minutes prior to these Google searches and getting ready to just leave everything behind, I had a figurine that my grandmother used to collect and she was very nice and so beautiful and talented. Her husband (my grandpa) lived a lot longer then she did so I saw him a lot and I loved him with my life but he passed too. I had the figurine before leaving the house I held it saying how much I love them and how much I miss them and I would do anything to be with them again. My family is christian so when I saw the butterfly and what it meant, I truly felt he sent my grandma out to show they heard me and I’m not alone no matter how hard things get, they heard me before and they still do and they love me too. I felt so overwhelmed and grateful at the same time, it was a sign that I still have a lot to live for and that it’s not better off if I leave even if that’s what it feels like. If anyone is struggling with depression or suicidal thoughts, you’re not alone. There’s still someone out there that loves and appreciates you. We’re all strong and we all have something to live for.

  3. Chantal

    My Mother died suddenly on the 10th April 2022 she had just found out that she had stage 4 lung Cancer.
    A week after her funeral I noticed a black and orange butterfly flying around us all the time, it landed on my kitchen window and has been sitting there day and night for almost 2 months now. Just before Mom died I bought her a pair of pyjamas with butterflies all over and felt that this was all connected and had to be Mom watching over me,how pleased I was to have this sight confirm what I believed

  4. Misty

    My mom passed on Christmas of 2018 there was a miniature rose bush she planted out side my grandmas house and that year that rose bush put off more roses than I’ve ever seen one put off but as the fall and winter came on I noticed that the rose bush stayed green snow on the ground but yet it was still bright beautiful green I thought that was kind of odd but one morning I got a call from my dad saying my mom is in the hospital and that she passed out right before he got her there and they had finally gotten her heart beat back but she was still unconious they done all they could for her before sending her to ft.worth but that night she came to me and woke me up from a dead sleep, I sat straight up in bed and she said to me now your going to have to help take care of your dad and Jay, Jay being my younger brother but old enough to take care of himself, and so I knew from that moment she was trying to let me know she was tired of fighting with her COPD, but we wanted to give her enough time to see if she make any improvements but she steadily went down hill and it was about two weeks before we had to make the desicion to take her off of life support, she made it to Christmas day and then she passed, and the next day I was at my dad with my fiance we were sitting out side talking around the fire pit and a butterfly came and landed on me and it’s in December cold as heck snow on the ground and a beautiful brightly colored butterfly came and landed on me crawled all over my arm and flew up to my chest where my heart is at and sat there for 3ot four mins the flew over to my little brother and stayed for a min the lastly flew and landed to my dad and sat there a min, she wasn’t around to meet my fiance we got together shortly after her passing but the butterfly didn’t stop to see him she just flew off and I sat there and said did y’all catch that it landed on all of us but my fiance so that had to be mom I cried and then my dad had to go inside for it upset him I know but every since then I will think about her and I will see a butterfly not long after that and when I see one I can go stand out there with my arm arm in the air and my palm up towards the sky and that butterfly will come land on me somewhere and it’ll hang out with me for what seems like a long time and then just fly away and keep in mind that that time of year it’s not really an ideal time for butterflies to be out or the rose bushes to bloom out. It’s the little things I. Life that u have to take note of because it could be your loved one sharing something with you or trying to warn you of something about to be changing in your life just trying to figure out how to read and understand the message is what you’ll have to figure out.

  5. Maria

    I have seen white and monarch butterflies ever since my father passed away 2020 beginning of covid and we could not be by his side at the hospital we never got to say goodbye and always felt so mad and angry about that.. on his 1st anniversary we went to put flowers as I was kneeling down to put his flowers in the vase were he laid to rest a white butterfly flew above me and the flowers I was speechless every time I see a white butterfly I stop and stare at it and smile and feel a warm feeling in my heart I know it is my father.. when I am having a stressful and a bad day out of nowhere a white butterfly will appear close to my house or in front of my hose but it appears so fast and disappears to quick.. I believe it is my dad and angels looking out for me I truly believe that.

  6. Khushi Prajapati

    I see daily many butterlies mostly of orrange and yellow colour in the way to which I go to my school .
    Whenever I see them I feel very happy .I just believe that god is with me moving around me, near me like butterflies.
    I forget all my tension and hope my day will go better than i think.

  7. Andrea Blevins

    We took our pups to the park and on the way home is my dads street. My dad passed 7/5/20, my sis created a fake Will killing me off so she could steal everything! So right now strangers are in my home and I’ve yet to be! So we’re walking and see the most beautiful monarch butterfly getting some water in a puddle, I grabbed my phone to video and it flew away so we kept walking. We’re walking and keep noticing it was following us and we’re talking about the plans dad had for a pool and the house, just fun things, and we get to our street, 3 blocks straight and it’s still following us! Halfway up the street it starts to get ahead of us and takes off up the street and right at our house it takes a hard right, straight under our awning! I know it’s my dad, he’s been giving me signs like crazy and I’ve never seen or had like this before! I’ll have an odd anxiety that somethings going to happen but I don’t know what it is and what do ya know something happens! Like 2 nights ago, I had the gut feeling and was worried about my boy cuz who else is what I was thinking and at 2:30 our dogs started going nuts so my hubby comes to check and there’s a drunk guy on our porch playing legos with my garden bricks and trying to steal my dads funeral trinkets (sparklers), but how’d I know or have that feeling and it’s only started since I lost my dad

  8. Tando

    I just enjoy the visit of a brown butterfly in my room it just came through the calling, the door is close n the window is close the moment I saw it I felt so happy watching it flying around.Yesterday it was
    feathers same brown colour when I’m from work I found it inside my room. As for Angel no I encounter them day by day. I’m so grateful to the Universe

  9. jordan

    I’ve seen 4 butterflies today..2 white ones who were flying together..1 yellow one and one brown one..Fies this mean anything

  10. Lauren

    I’ve just been at work and a butterfly has just appeared completely out of nowhere. I’ve not had any windows open and it just flew from right under my desk. Does this mean anything?

  11. Meadow

    So my grandmother passed September 3, 2020 and for 2 to 3 weeks before she passed I was constantly seeing monarch butterflies and a lot of them which is honestly kind of rare nowadays and I just felt like it was a sign telling me that she’s about to pass and she did

  12. Bess

    Been seeing butterflies everyday for the past few weeks. green yellow white brown and always land in front of me. Don’t know what message it brings but surely it makes me smile and brightens my day. However, am curious why these 4 colored butterflies seems to approach me and would make sure that I notice them because it would really land in front of me not just flying around but would always makes sure I get a perfect view of them. No clues what it means but just happy to have them

    1. mogie

      one brown butterfly was above my head on the wall when I was sleeping. till the morning up u til I got up

  13. shuntae

    hello I have been seeing butterflies lately..first in meditation a cluster of yellow butterflies flying around ..second a orange and black butterfly landed on my car and wouldn’t move..last night I had a dream about a thousand blue butterflies flying around each other …. is something about to happen?

  14. Mary

    I have been praying about a relationship issue. Looking for a sign
    Today there is a black butterfly fly around in my house
    Should I talk it as s sign

  15. Antoinette

    Hi over the last few days I have butterflies all around me if I’m walking a white 1 following me a few times even got on the bus was flying around me they have been in my home 7 times u set it free but still came back in same one black and orange now tonight there is an all black one in my son’s room can you relate to any meaningful gestusture please x
    Love and light

  16. Victor

    MANY times i find now ive been saven them were ever i go .i look on parking lots stores.even in the middle of. The. Road crossing to the hospital.i belive its my the garden come summer this monark butterfly comes to me landed on my hands.on my car will sit and watch me in the flower beds.funny thing is. It wouldnt let me or my friend take a picture of it .so we gave up i sat talking to it as if it was my mother .i told it i had to go cook dinner it followed me to the enterance and then left after i said good by and see you anouther day. Think im nuts but yep very next day it sat on the plant and watched me for the longest time.i could go on and on but leave it there.oh and counted my dimes and there is 35.$ last i counted

  17. Victoria

    My dad passed away a little over a year ago. We had father/daughter days on Saturday while my mom went shopping and ran errands through his last few months with us here on earth. My dad was an avid lover of Morning Doves and on one of our Saturdays monthly, we had to go (or I had to go) to the feed mill to get cracked corn for them and throw it on the ground for the doves. I do this in my own yard and the Doves come…2…4 sometimes 6. While walking the dog early morning, the Doves are on the wires up above watching me as I walk and I know it’s my dad protecting me…your thoughts?

  18. Mariposa

    The butterfly is also a universal image of Reiki energy, and can symbolize transformation, creation and change. The imagery of a butterfly is so powerful – it starts its life out as a lowly caterpillar, often unseen and viewed by many as a pest. Once it has had enough of that life, it cocoons itself from the world for a short rest, to emerge as something completely different and beautiful.

  19. Lori Mrasek

    Last year my bf passed away, needless to say I was devastated, the next day I’m taking my puppy for a walk, and on the sidewalk I spot 3 quarters, I’m like hmmm, I said to myself Lynne if your around I need something more than 3 quarters. 10 minutes later I enter the park and a man is walking his dog, he approaches me and my pup he said excuse me Miss do you know you have a butterfly on your head. I was like YESSSS, thanks Lynne, you put the biggest smile on my face. It’s been a long road to healing shortly there after my cousin, then my Auntie and then my baby brother all passed. I’m hoping I see lots of butterflies this summer 🙂 Maybe the 3 quarters was also a sign?

    1. LJ

      Hi Lori: Absolutely, coins are often left by spirit; I’ve had it happen many times such as when I vacuum the floor and turn around only to find a dime lying just where I’ve vacuumed. I laughed when you said you had a butterfly on your head. It seems your friend had quite a sense of humor. I’m sorry for all of your losses, but I’m sure you’ll be seeing plenty of other butterflies or other signs in the future. Enjoy the connection.

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