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Crow Medicine and a Good Cackle

Monday, January 27th, 2014



CrowMedicine

Crow Medicine and Learning to Laugh

I was thinking about crows, and how they’re so prevalent up here in the winter, and how winter tends to correspond with the sometimes dark umbra cast upon the crow’s symbolic history.

I haven’t written a whole lot about the symbolic meaning of crows, although I talk about their siblings, ravens. I write about animal meanings when the timing feels right, and crow-time can be a challenge to pin down. :)

However, I have observed something over a few winters in the great lakes area.

Winter is serious up here, and I’ll spare you the top 100 list of reasons why.

Where I live, winter’s grip is iron-fisted, and winter doesn’t leave without leaving a few marks. It can be dark work living up north, where winters are long and commanding. There’s a reason critters hole-up, and feathered friends fly south.

Crows stay.

A crow-epiphany shot through me one day amidst knee-deep snow, treacherously slickering my way on an icy footpath, straddling too much luggage, fit-to-be-tied in serious frustration.

And then I heard laughing. Tinny, sardonic, ‘what-the-hell-is-your-problem-lady,’ kind of laughing. A posse of crows perched in a nearby tree sent peals of cackling in my direction as if in response to my own self-absorbed seriousness. And I got it.

Crows laugh at seriousness.

That is to say, in my view, crows cackle in mockery at self-inflicted seriousness.

In those circumstances, while I was up-to-my-eyeballs in seriousness, those madly mirthful crows gave me a lesson in lightening up, and I intend to retain it.

Mirth on.

:)

Other links of interest:

Symbolic Raven Meaning

Raven Tattoo Meanings

More Crow Medicine (on discussion forum)

Winter Symbolism

Symbolism of the Seasons

Dreaming of Bird Meanings

Meaning of Black Birds

 

 

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Dreaming of Animals

Tuesday, August 21st, 2012
Dreaming of Animals

Dreaming of Animals


What does it mean when we dream of animals?  There are several explanations like:

  • Getting more connected with nature
  • Being in touch with our primal side
  • Adapting to environment
  • Following our instincts

Animals in dreams also give us messages of survival.  Animals are designed for survival and when they come into our dreams I’ve found they are communicating ways for us to adapt and adjust ourselves.  They show us to be flexible so move out of limitation and into thriving situations.

Animals in dreams are reflections of who we are.  For example, if you are dreaming of a bear, ask yourself how that bear represents who you are.  Is there a part of you that needs to go into an intense span of rest (hibernation)?  Are you a gentle giant?  Is it time to forage for new opportunities?

It’s important to take note of the condition of the animal and the habitat of dreams.  If your dream animal is healthy, shiny and brilliant – it’s a very auspicious sign – a good oracle indeed.  If your animal is being chased, or looks malnourished it’s a clear sign for personal evaluation.  This hearkens back to the theme of survival and your animal dream is telling you to take care of yourself.

Your dream animal habitat will help with your interpretations too.  Forests are symbolic of networks, communication and social connectivity.  Desserts are symbolic of isolation.  Water and oceans represent expanse, dreams and intuition.  Skies have similar meanings as water, but also deal with telepathic communication and mentalism.

Of course, the best way to interpret your dream is by the animal that surfaces in your sleeping hours.  Certain animals will have specific messages.  Here is a loose guideline for what these dream meanings could present:

  • Land mammals:  Dreaming of ground animals in the mammal class (esp. with four legs) is sign we are wanting our basic needs satisfied.  Stability, security and connection with family are the concepts all carried on the backs of mammal dreams.  The realm of matter belongs to these dream animals too.  Therefore these dream animals will clarify beliefs about home, hearth, health and money. These dream animals are a sign of a need for grounding and basic balance in our lives.
  • Uncommon mammals: Bats, whales, platypus, armadillo and other unusual creatures who have traits from other classes of animals but are technically considered mammals will offer you messages as unusual as they are.  These creatures speak to us in dreams about our ability to adapt.  Specifically, they will tell us that it’s okay to be unique and atypical – even in a world that sometimes wants us to be typical or “normal.”
  • Water animals: Creatures of the waters will be symbolic of our emotional lives.  Fish will swim into our dreaming consciousness to give us status on our feelings, and how our emotions can help us learn more about life-perception.  Sea creatures go very deep into the collective conscious and they know things about the psyche and intuitive impressions.  Sea animals will help us with our psychic ability too because water is the realm of deeper knowing.  Water creatures will also present messages of cleaning and purification.  Call upon water creatures when you are working on developing your intuition or if you need to cleanse stale emotional energy.
  • Air animals:  Birds and dreaming of animals in the skies is an oracle from the realms of intellect.  Air creatures are symbolic of higher thinking – the higher mind.  Intelligence, strategy, logic and “the bigger picture” in terms of planning are all areas air animals will assist in dreams.  Dreaming of birds and insects will help structure your thoughts.  Feathers in dreams will also speak of spiritual renewal and ascension too.

I hope you have enjoyed these suggestions on what it means to when we are dreaming of animals.  Check out the links below for more information related to this topic.

Air Animal Meanings

Insect Meanings

Land Animal Meanings

Lizard and Amphibious Animal Meanings

Water Animal Meanings

Dreaming of Animals (a list of animal meanings in dreams)

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Poof! You’re a Toad (the dangers of totem-assignment)

Sunday, July 24th, 2011

Personal Investment is Key to Totem Identification

Don’t let the title of this blog post fool you.  I’m not waving my rowan-wood wand, turning folks into toads (yet, lol).

Rather, this post is about the tricky business of assigning animal totems to folks wanting to know.

Not a day passes when someone doesn’t send in an email with a question like: “Avia, can you tell me what my animal totem is?”

On the one hand, I’m thrilled with these inquiries.  It suggests a desire to re-connect to animal kin.  It’s a sign that folks are becoming more attuned to the wild and wonderful realms of the Mother [Nature] – and that is uber-awesome.

On the other hand, I’m often distressed by the lack of personal investment in re-connecting with our animal brothers and sisters.  Connections to our animal kin is a deeply personal act.

What’s even more irking is the idea that a virtual stranger can arbitrarily assign a totem to another person.  To explain, I’ve been known to listen in on certain radio show discussions about totems and neo-shamanism.  I’m not naming names, but I’m suspect when these totem-experts get callers on their show with the inevitable question: “Can you tell me my animal totem?” and I’m floored when the totem-practitioner pops off a critter to the caller – essentially assigning a totem to him or her in the span of two seconds.

How can that cosmic connection be gleaned from a distant second party?  It feels like “slot-machine logic” – an answer spit out at random.  I could be wrong. These totem experts could be mightily connected to their spiritual council, and so they are fed this totem information to present to the caller.  Still, I have doubts.

On my most connected days, in which unification with my own Spirit Council is super-tight, I am fed information in terms of “seeing” woodland creatures or other critters scampering around my client’s energy.  These visions give me a good idea about the inquirer’s totem affiliations.  Nevertheless, in the midst of these visions come strong admonishments from the Council.  Admonishments like: “These are the animal energies communing with the human – but he/she must establish the connection.”

Historically, shamans could succinctly identify totems to the members of their tribe/village.  There’s a reason for that.  Shamans, elders, seers, and wise-women of a tribe typically hold their positions in the group over long spans of time. They live, learn, love together in a tight-knit community, intrinsically linked to the clan members. They often oversee the birthing of new members, and are participants of that member’s life from day one.  This gives them special knowing, they see the patterns between a tribal-member’s aura, energy, personality that link to the like-energy of their totem.  Simply put, tribal shamans have had a long-standing connection with their people, and are therefore in a better position to identify the individual totems of their tribesmen and women.

So what if we don’t live in a native setting in which an Elder knows us and can help us retrieve our animal totem identities?

The onus is on us.  We must be the ones to invest the time to re-connect with our animal guides and guardians.

Asking others to identify our totems isn’t a bad thing, but I’d be leery of pat answers from virtual strangers.  Those who ask me what their totems are often get frustrated with my round-about answers.  I offer information that my Council feeds me, but not without belting out a few paragraphs about the importance of personal meditation, research and investigation into the matter.

Let’s face it.  Most of us wouldn’t ask a stranger “Who is my life-partner?” and then marry the first person named Joe or Suzie just because we’ve been given a pat answer to this question.

In my opinion, re-partnering with our animal totems is no less serious.  Our animal totems are profound partnerships – indeed, a marriage.  They deserve our time and attention to get to know them.  We deserve the investment to familiarize ourselves with our connection to them.  So, be wary of the “poof! you’re a toad” syndrome.  Pat answers to complex questions like these are to be approached with caution.

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