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The Meaning of Flies

By Saoirse
December 28, 2021
The Meaning of Flies

TL;DRAre flies a sign of something? The spiritual significance of flies may be overlooked by many who consider the animal an annoyance, but that doesn’t make the fly any less meaningful. What do flies represent, what is the meaning of flies in the house and other omens they may represent? What is the fly totem meaning, what is the spiritual meaning of the fly in general, and what can it mean to you? Learn these things and more with Mysticsense.

Of all creatures in existence, it is perhaps the common fly that irritates us most. It’s considered an irritating little critter who buzzes around us, bringing filth, disease, and is seen by some as a symbol of pestilence and death. They get into our homes and just don’t seem to want to go away. No matter how many we get rid of, more flies just keep coming. Before assuming the lowly fly holds no value, see what some myths have to say, and you will be surprised how much flies help their ecosystems!

What’s a Fly?

Houseflies are, most simply stated, insects of the diptera order, which include over 1,000,000 different types of insects! Flies have large compound eyes, enabling them to have incredible vision, and they have special mouths that help them lap up liquids. Their bodies are covered with tiny hairs, and they have one pair of wings. Houseflies have spread all over the World, and especially live nearby people, as our lifestyles create food waste they feed off of. We are so beneficial to flies, it’s believed that if humanity becomes extinct, flies probably will too. While typically having a lifespan of six days or less, a single female fly can lay up to one hundred twenty eggs at a time, so they reproduce quickly.

Their wings beat up to one thousand times per minute, but their maximum speed is only about four and a half miles per hour, meaning they are not considered fast creatures by any means. They typically only roam a personal territory of about one thousand meters, but some have been measured as having travelled up to twenty miles before! A fly’s tastebuds are on its feet, so the second they land, they start sampling whatever they are on. Those amazing feet allow them to walk up the sides of things and even upside down without falling off!

It is not a myth that flies carry disease. Their ability to carry and transmit disease on their bodies earned them the job of being contaminated with the bacteria that causes cholera and released in China by the Japanese military in 1942 and 1943, contaminating and killing over 200,000 people. Some societies consider them symbols of death because they feed off dead bodies, and some even consider them a symbol of the devil himself.

Some believe flies create filth and decay, as opposed to just carrying it, but science explains quite the opposite is true. Flies help break this decomposing matter down and dispose of it, otherwise we would be “swimming in it” according to Dr. Christine Lambkin. Flies also pollinate plants much like bees do, helping our food grow, and while they are capable of bringing disease, breaking down organic matter and pollinating food are far greater roles they play in their ecosystems.

What Does a Fly Symbolize?

Death and Disease

Because flies settle in fecal matter, decaying bodies, and trash, they are associated by many as death and disease itself. It is true that flies carry pathogens of diseases, with one hundred different pathogens having been detected on flies including typhoid, bacillary dysentery, and tuberculosis. They showed up in some Middle Ages European paintings as symbols of death, and it was believed flies were death itself. Flies don’t bite people like mosquitoes to spread disease, but their fecal matter and vomit transmit it aside from the germs they can carry on their bodies.


Some Christians insist that Beelzebub is another name for their devil, but this isa simple misunderstanding. Baal-Zebub was a celebrated god venerated by the Philistines. Baal means god or lord, and Zebub was that gods name. Another suggested spelling of his name is Baal Zebul which means Lord of the Heavenly Dwelling, and he cured people by driving disease out of them, which was believed to be seen leaving in the form of flies. The Caananite form of this god was simply called Baal. Johan Weyer, a 16th century occultist decided Beelzebub was the devil Lucifer’s chief lieutenant, but the problem with this is Lucifer was not Satan, but a Roman embodiment of “Light Bringer” associated with the planet Venus and he was the son of Aurora, goddess of the dawn. It is written that Old Testament time rabbis derisively called this god the Lord of Flies, but an Israelite king even sent messengers to ask devotees of this god of he would recover from an injury, so important was Baal Zebub.

Big Fly

In Navajo myths, Big Fly hoovers near those creating sand paintings, protecting their work. Sometimes, Big Fly sits on their shoulders, and tells them messages from the elders, answering any questions of them the painter has. It’s not just painters Big Fly also known as Littlewind guides. Many in the desert seek his wisdom, and according to Joseph Campbell in The Power of Myth “ Big Fly and Littlewind is the voice of the Great Spirit revealing hidden wisdom- it is the awakening of spiritual intelligence.”

Fly in the House Meaning

It is generally considered a bad omen if a fly or flies are in your house. The spiritual meaning of flies in your house is of uncleanliness, and people immediately start clearing out whatever drew the flies be it decaying matter of wrong deeds. Sometimes it’s not that wrong has been done, but a member of the household needs to set their thoughts right. Inner work should be done to see what needs discarded be it spiritual or physical to get the flies out of the house.

Dead Flies in House Spiritual Meaning

It is possible that flies just died in your house because they reached the end of their lives or a dead flies omen can have deeper meaning. Dead flies in your house can be indication somebody in the house will soon be struggling with illness or spiritual stagnation. On the other hand, if you or somebody in your household has gone through an illness or a dark time emotionally or spiritually, dead flies in the house can indicate that the time of suffering is coming to a close, and recovery is about to begin. Sweep away the dead flies, and bad times as well, because better times are coming!

Flies in Dreams Meaning

What do flies in dreams mean? When you dream that flies are buzzing around you, it can mean people are irritating or aggravating you, but like flies, as long as you shoo them away, they can simply be a minor annoyance. Flies in dreams can indicate struggles you are being called to step up and combat. Having dreams about flies buzzing about your ears means you are about to hear some bad news, and dreams about killing flies means you will crush whatever comes to tear you down! Dreaming about flies biting you means something is going on that seeks to hurt you and you should pay attention upon waking to who could cause this so you can stop them.

Why Are Flies Always Around Me?

It’s highly unlikely that flies are ALWAYS around you, however, if they are around you quite often, and it happens more often that it happens to other people you spend a lot of time with, there is a reason. Some flies, bees, and other insects hoover nearby people who use beauty products, shampoos, and perfumes because they like the smell. Even natural coconut oil when used as a natural lotion draws flies and bees! They also buzz around people who have foods and drinks open that they like the smell of, most especially sugary things to eat and drink!

If none of these things are happening, chances are the flies have a spiritual message for you. There is a strong chance the fly is your personal spirit animal, however, sometimes they just come around because they have mystical messages. Some people believe flies symbolize death and the dead in general. So, when flies are around you often, they may be bringing messages from your ancestors. You don’t need to be afraid they portend your own death, but just listen and see what they could be telling you. Do they often land on a photograph of a family member like a grandparent who you love and miss? Perhaps that grandparent is saying hello in the form of the fly.

Flies in the Face Meaning

Almost nothing can be more annoying than an insect flying in your face, can it? Aside from swatting it away, there isn’t much you can do except pay attention to see if the fly is bringing messages rather than just being frustrating. Flies swooping at your face might want a bite of your steak, and they might be trying to give you a heads up to watch out because something could be about to go wrong. Immediately check your surroundings for any dead animals or debris to ensure you don’t step or fall into it.

Aside from immediate physical dangers, the fly could be warning you of a disaster about to strike in your life. They are telling you to “fly in the face” of whatever problems or issues you are about to experience, facing them head on, and taking charge of the situation! Keep your wits about you and have confidence in your own strengths to deliver you, successfully, from whatever is about to go wrong.

The Fly Animal Totem

Flies aren’t all bad. Besides their ability to help rid the planet of debris and help pollinate plants, flies actually teach great lessons. Flies, like any creature, can be a spirit or totem animal. As a spirit animal, flies symbolize taking opportunities, being tenacious, and efficiency. Flies find ways to gather much in spaces where there is seemingly nothing and they can make great things out of situations where there seems to be zero to benefit from. Flies have the drive to go above and beyond, searching in every nook and cranny for answers and resources even in spaces where it seems there is nothing there. Because of these skills and abilities, your spirit animal fly enters your life with an outpouring of plenty and grants the ability to increase your resources more quickly than anybody would believe you could. When the fly is your spirit animal, you will have the knack for finding beauty and wealth in what would seem to be the least likely of of places, and you and the lucky people who you take care of will enjoy lifelong abundance wherever you go.

What is the Best Way to Get Rid of Flies?

Flyswatters and toxic insecticides that poison the air and water control fly populations to some extent, but one of the most effective ways country people and savvy homemakers have found to get rid of flies is a fly trap made of household products. Mix a couple drops of dish soap with about a tablespoon of both sugar and vinegar into about one quarter cup of water and give it a little stir. Flies are naturally drawn to this combination, and will descend into it to drink, where they die. Dump this out and replace it every couple of days until all the flies are gone.

It is understandable if you don’t want to kill these pollinating creatures, and a few tips can reduce the amount of them that get into your house. Don’t leave any food whatsoever sitting out, most especially fruit, sweets, or wine, as these especially draw flies. Keep doors closed and keep screens in repair so insects cannot fly inside. Keep trash away from the entrances of the home and tie all trash up tightly and securely to keep flies from getting inside bags of trash. A fan facing the door or window, blowing air outwards can help deter some flies from entering and some garden plants that deter flies are marigolds, lavender, and citronella.

Any foods you can run down the garbage disposal will keep food out of the trash thus allowing less inside the house to draw insects. Some townships do offer a fruit and vegetable composting program with secure fitting lids on receptacles which insects and animals cannot get into that they will provide you free of charge. You can fill the bins with fruit and vegetable waste, and turn it in to your local program. Keep garden compost piles away from the house, and some people insist that chickens are a great way to combat flies, as they love to snack on baby flies, or maggots.

What Does it All Mean?

You don’t need to be submerged in flies to draw wisdom from them. The fly spiritual meaning is of efficiency, using all resources wisely, making something out of nothing, and determination and abundance. The fly may carry some diseases, however, without them and other animals who break down decaying matter, we would be struggling with far more disease, and far less food because they are prolific pollinators. The prophetic meaning of flies is that of opportunism, healing, benefitting your environment, and making the best out of every situation. The fly is a sacred blessed creature indeed!

About the Author: Saoirse has studied magic and lore for most of her life, but started walking her own Magical Path after being spiritually reborn in the desert. Today she shares her gifts as a Psychic and Content Writer for Mysticsense and she writes for Pagan Pages emag.

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