Sunday, February 20, 2011

Power Animals

I know that wherever my spiritual odyssey takes me, animals will be with me. I've always loved animals; somewhere around the middle of my life, I realized they were becoming increasingly important to me. As my human connection has dwindled and shrunk, animals have filled the gap and become my family…my community.

So the concept of animal spirit guides does not sound at all far-fetched or fantastical to me. It seems very possible and real, and probably already an intrinsic part of my life's journey. All I need to do is open myself fully to the concept; consider what the animals and birds appearing and re-appearing along my path might be trying to communicate to me.

Being more or less of a neophyte at all this, and not having the time or the mental wherewithal to do justice to a real study of shamanic spirituality, I've done just enough reading to…confuse myself. I recognize that I've been visited by animal spirit guides in the past; but I am feeling called, now, to identify my "power animal"—that animal which represents my connection to all life, my qualities of character. My power.

Over the years, I have felt drawn to many animals…mostly birds, actually. Cardinals. Geese. Herons. Cranes. Most recently, the bald eagle. And I think each of these has been or is one of my spirit guides. I kind of hoped that one of them might be my Power Animal. Most particularly the eagle. Because I understand that Eagle visits me at times of particular need in my life. But, no… The book I have on the subject explains the attributes of one whose Power Animal is Eagle:

You're a very spiritually evolved individual and a born leader, and people gravitate quite naturally to you.


So. How about Heron?

You're always willing to look at yourself with detachment in order to see the truth of your inner workings.

Well, maybe. Ideally, that's what I would like to be, but I don't think I'm there yet.

Let's look at Goose:

The majority of your activities are centered on your home, community, school or church.


And so it went with every animal I was attracted to or had felt some affinity with over the past months.

And then, I noticed that this particular author has included less traditional animal spirits in this book. For example, most shamanic spirituality discounts domestic animals, since they are already "in service" to man. But here in this book, we have horse, and donkey, and dog.

And cat.

You're introspective and listen to your own internal guidance more than others' advice.

You're independent, sometimes to the point of doing exactly the opposite of what others expect or want you to do.

Your most creative work is done at night.

At times you come across as rather self-absorbed, seemingly oblivious to those around you.


In truth, I need to meditate, possibly even ask for a dream, in order to discover my Power Animal. I need to do some serious study and research, instead of fifteen minute internet searches and relying on this one book as my manual of shamanic spirituality.

But it really will not surprise me if "Cat" does turn out to be my Power Animal.

And I would happily live with that.

1 comment:

  1. Cats are good. Cats are very good. What book are you using? I have a copy of Ted Andrews Animal Speak; it's partly info, partly encyclopedia. It suggests that you might actually have more than one animal. Cats are more powerful at night, herons in the spring.

    It's one of my 'Round to it books. As in I'll get around to finishing this as soon as I.......