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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in spirit animal

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Connecting to Animal Spirits

Animal spirits are the collective consciousness and wisdom of their species.  When you call upon Wolf, you are invoking the power, knowledge, and experiences of all wolves living and who have gone on before.  When you call on the energies of an animal, you receive the totality of the species for guidance. 

A simple way to invite an animal in your life is to visualize and then call to them.  Some people find it helpful to have a picture of the animal nearby.  Others may adorn themselves with things of the animal, and some move like the animal. Other people have carvings of animals that they will use.

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Using Animal Oracle Cards to Discover Your Animals

A popular method for finding your Animals of the Heart is with animal oracle cards. While there are many fine decks, they are all limited in both the types and number of animals that they feature. Moreover, most decks are mammal-centric. Birds are usually represented by “Crow (or Raven),” “Eagle,” “Hawk,” “Hummingbird,” and “Owl.” Reptiles are limited to “Lizard,” “Snake,” and “Turtle.” Insects (and related others) are “Bee,” “Dragonfly,” and “Spider.”

Therefore, I would recommend a world-oriented deck since they will feature a wider range of animals. The methods that I suggest can work with most decks. Many popular decks tend to be North American specific, with a sprinkling of world animals. There are special themed decks which focus on Australian animals, birds, pets and other related topics. If you feel strongly about a certain grouping, then use those specialty decks.

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YOWIE (Australia's Bigfoot): Tenacity

When the Europeans first arrived in Australia, they encountered “the hairy man,” of Aboriginal myth. According to the Aboriginal Australians, humans share this continent with apemen. These Yowies (“hairy men”), as they were called, had inhabited Australia before the coming of any humans.

 Amongst the Aboriginal Australians, the “hairy men” were called many names and possessed different attributes. “Yowie,” the name They are called today comes from “Yuwi” as referred to by the Yuwaalaraay People of New South Wales. To them, Yowie is a spirit from Dreamtime. Meanwhile, the “Yaroma” of the Blue Mountains was a cannibal. According to the Gundungurra People, the Yaroma sharpened their long fangs on rocks. A human could escape from this cannibal by jumping into a waterhole, since the Yaroma could not get their feet wet. Other myths describe Yowies to be gigantic “hairy men,” with muscular bodies and powerful arms.

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YETI (ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN): Reflections on the Sacred

Mention “Abominable Snowman,” and people will conjure up a picture of a huge apeman with a cone-shaped head and snow white hair. This particular man-like creature has captured the public imagination with stories, toys, and TV shows. Now, people entertain notions of unknown humans and their hidden lives in the inaccessible places of the Himalayas.

Stories of Yeti (“Abominable Snowman”) reach far back in history. Pliny the Elder, of Rome, wrote about Yeti in the First Century C.E. In his writings on the natural world, Pliny described a man-like creature, who walked on two legs, living in the mountains of India. Meanwhile ancient writings of Tibetans told of a man-beast who roamed the high passes. Also the peoples of the Himalayas regarded Yeti to be the God of Hunting.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
A Book and a Cat

Continuing my story of my personal journey on my heathen path, I continued to learn various magical basics, not exclusively heathen. During the early 1990s, I studied the book The Way of the Shaman, and met a lynx. 

 A quote from my memoir, Greater Than the Sum of My Parts:

      “I worked through the exercises in a little paperback book called the Way of the Shaman.  From it I learned to read auras.  At first I had difficulty with the concept of aura reading, but then I figured out what it really was.  Learning aura reading is training one’s intuition to give information in visual form.  The color spectrum is capable of carrying more shades of meaning in a single data point than is a gut feeling.  It’s like trading Morse code for a videophone.  After that it was only a matter of practice, and in a few weeks I went on to the next exercise in the book.”

I had already connected to a spirit animal, cats of various species, but after reading that book, I went on a trip to Montana and connected powerfully with a lynx. The excuse for the trip was wildlife photography. I connected profoundly with an animal spirit that united the Native totem spirits, the Eastern martial arts animals, and the heathen bersarkrgangr animals, although I would not know about the martial of bersarkrgangr for another few years yet.

I photographed the lynx jumping over a log. The photo accompanying this post is one of the pictures of that very lynx, which I took on 35mm slide film. 

 A quote from my memoir: 

     “The lynx got tired and sat in the shade a while, panting, its cream and red-brown fur a liability in the summer sun.  It was not much bigger than my own cat at home, and I had to remind myself that it was not in fact a domestic cat and I should not pet it, despite the temptation.   As I stood watching the lynx, it looked back at me with spring green eyes.  I did not let myself physically move to touch it, but my feelings went out to it, to her, I realized, perfect hunter, emblem of every cat spirit I had ever known, from the lion roar of shenai practice to the little house cat spirit in the field on my first day at college.  She united the big cats and the small, the tiger of martial arts with the sweet kitten who comforted me when my father died.  I forged a connection with Lynx, not just this lynx but the archetypal Lynx.  She united within me all the cat spirits I had seen and heard, every catlike instinct I possessed, and something more, something hidden deep within.”

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