Let’s Glance at Today’s Totem/Power Animal – The Crow/Raven

Crow/Raven

This large, stately black bird assumes an almost universal role as a symbol of death or destiny.

Among the Celtic people, the bird was associated with various war goddesses, who could assume the form of a raven at will. The Vikings held similiar beliefs about the valkyries, and it was decreed that understanding the speech of birds could help one gain entry to the world of valkyries and ravens, where the results of future battles were ordained. Valkyries, in their coats of lustrous black feathers, were also known as Kraken, or crows. Warriors who fell in battle and whose bodies could not be reclaimed by friends or family were known as hrafengrennir, “raven feeders.”

The great Danish hero Sigurd was the some of King Ragnar Lodbrok and the valkyrie Krake, a shape-shifter who could choose to be a beautiful maiden or a crow.

0In numerous fairy tales of the northern Europeans, the raven is the spirit helper who guides the hero through the dangerous turns and traps of his quest. The raven is also a reliable consultant on the vagaries of the Other World.

In the Germanic tradition, the great hero Emperor Fredrick is guarded by ravens as he sleeps in his underground sanctuary until the day of his return to earth.

During the dark and troubled Middle Ages in Europe, the crow also came to be associated with Satan because of its black color and raucous cry. Moralistic animal fables were told of the crow’s shame of its blackness, even to the point of scattering mud on elegant swans in an attempt to make them look like him. They, of course, could wash off the dirt, but the jealous crow could never change his color. St. Antony, however, was not disturbed by such negative reports against the crow, for he chose it as his animal symbol.

Among many Native American tribes, especially among the plains and southwestern groups, the crow is a trickster figure, similiar in many ways to the coyote.

The Dakota envision the crow as an assistant to the plover, the Spirit of the South, who presided over warm weather. When the Spirit of the North arrived with his winter wolves, a battle ensued between them and the crow and the plover. According to tradition, if the two birds with their war clubs are able to beat back the wolves, warm weather would prevail for a little while longer before the harsh cold set in over the plains.

The Pueblo groups usually associate owls and crows with Dark Side witchcraft, and it was generally accepted that witches could change themselves into crows at will and fly at night to work their evil deeds.

In the Native American zodiac, those born from September 23 to October 22 are Crow/Raven people. The Medicine Wheel describes them as social, energetic, and full of nervous energy and fluctuating moods. But they are generally very flexible and adapt well to new enviroments and circumstances.

If you have selected the crow as your totem animal-or if the crow has selected you-you may consider yourself to be something of a shape-shifter, gifted at wearing many faces. Be cautious of becoming too manipulative of others and impinging upon the free will of those who may be a bit gullible and easily led.

Your crow is a keen-eyed student of the enviroment from a perspective seldom achieved by ordinary observers. As one who watches shrewdly over the lay of the land on both spiritual and physical levels, your totem animal expresses a point of view that touches several dimensions. As you learn better how to listen, you will find that he is a messenger without peer.

As a spirit helper, the crow will be able to get you in touch with many ancient mysteries, but you must regularly enter the Silence to be certain that you do not yield to the temptation of exploiting the powers of these ancient wisdoms for the glory of the Dark Side. If you are able to maintain your spiritual balance, the crow will guide you to become a gifted practitioner of True Magick and Medicine.

Dreams

Your animal totem is warning you that should you continue a present course of action, you will be in for a great disappointment.

Totems

The Transformative Power Of Your Personal Animal Totem

Brad Steiger

ISBN 0-06-251425-3

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The Crow

Crows are very vocal birds. They are sly and often deceptive in their actions. Crows have been known to build false nests high in treetops to confuse predators. The height of their nests give them the opportunity to watch everything that is going on around them. Many cultures think of crow as the keeper of knowledge for nothing escapes their keen sight.

Crows travel in groups and make mischief in teams. As one crow explores something new, others will watch closely to see what happens and then learn from it. In this way they seem to always be in council with each other. They often raise a ruckus when hunters are around, warning deer and other birds. Crows recognize possible danger and always post lookouts when feeding—thier most vulnerable time.

Their language is complex and they have a remarkable voice range. Each caw has its own meaning. Sometimes crow warns of impending danger. Other times it signals a time to join in council and make decisions. Listening to crow can teach those with this medicine how to hear the truth of what is being said.

The striking black color of crow represents the color of creation. It is the womb out of which the new is born. Black the color of night gives birth to the light of a new day. Crow is a daytime bird reminding us that magic and creation are present in both. Their ability to shift between the known and unknown world indicates new journeys.

Because crow is adaptable to all environments and will eat almost anything they can survive in almost any situation. Crow is associated with magic, unseen forces and spiritual strength. If crow flies into your life, get out of your familiar nest, look beyond your present range of vision, listen to its caw and act accordingly.

Author Unknown

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Let’s Talk A Look At The Totem/Power Animal – Coyote

Coyote

The Coyote holds a most unique place in the legends and folklore of North American tribes. Although intimately associated with the Great Mystery in the very act of creation, his wily descendants are both pests and relentless competitors in the serious business of survival on the Earth Mother.

One of the tribes of Old California believed that the coyotes were the first humans who ever existed. In the beginning, of course, they walked on all fours. Then, gradually, they began to grow certain human body parts-a finger here, a toe there, an ear here. Over the course of generations, they eventually became perfect humans with beautiful tails. Although the tails were handsome, they slowly wore away through the human habit of sitting upright.

To another southwestern tribe, the coyote became an early, god-like savior of humankind. Originally, so goes the old legend, the Great Sun Chief had nine brothers, all flaming hot like himself. The native people down on Mother Earth were about to wither and die under the terrible heat of ten suns burning down on them. Brother Coyote, quickly assessing the situation and immediately perceiving the answer, leaped into the sky and slew the Sun Chief’s fiery brothers, thus saving the tribespeople from baking to a crisp.

However, this problem had no sooner been solved when Sister Moon’s nine sisters, each as cold as she, began to turn the night into a freezing torment. Once again, the tribespeople were helpless, for they had no way to keep warm, and they appealed to Brother Coyote to help them lest they perish.

Coyote had to have time to think, so he retreated to the far eastern edge of the world. After a time, the Great Mystery sent him an idea. Coyote picked up his flint knife and struck it against a rock. Sparks flew into some leaves, and almost before he knew it, he had created a fire. He took a few moments to warm his paws over the flames, then leaped into the sky and slew each of Sister Moon’s frigid sisters, thus saving humankind from freezing to death. But as an aid to their keeping warm on cold winter nights, Coyote gave the tribes the gift of fire.

So it was the coyote who gave humankind the knowledge of how to make fire, how to grind flour, and how to find the herbs that would bring about the quickest cures. But Brother Coyote has a very strange temperament-or maybe he didn’t think he received enough thanks for his gifts-for he is also a Trickster. True, he brought fire and food and healing herbs to humankind, but he also brought death. The tribespeople soon learned that when you ask such a creature to grant you a wish, you had better hope that there will not be some twist attached to it.

Medicine teachers Star-Spider Woman and Rattling Bear caution that if you must be foolish enough to ask Coyote a favor, at least be very precise in what you request.

The Navajo regard the coyote as the very essence, sign, and symbol of Dark Side witchcraft. If a Navajo were to set out on a journey and spot a coyote crossing his path, he would go home and wait for three days before setting out again. Borrowing the devil from the Christian missionaries, the Navajo believe that Satan uses the coyote as his steed on evil nocturnal missions.

If you have received the coyote as your totem animal, you must first remove all negative connotations from your mind about the creature being a representative of the Dark Side of spirit. The coyote is an exceedingly resourceful animal with amazing powers of adaptability. Listen carefully to your coyote totem guide, for it will teach you the fine line between wisdom and folly.

The coyote totem spirit may well have come to you because you, too, are a survivor, a person who knows how to adapt to any situation, good or bad. Ancient wisdom lies within the vibration of this spirit helper, but to gain its greatest spiritual treasures, you must truly pay very careful attention to the essence of each and every message that your guide relays to you. This totem animal will teach you discernment, one of the most valuable of all survival lessons on the earthplane.

Dreams

Your spirit helper may be preparing you for a death, a serious illness, or a dramatic change in your

family.

Totems

The Transformative Power Of Your Personal Animal Totem

Brad Steiger

ISBN 0-06-251425-3

——————————————————————–

The Coyote

For a long time humans have been attempting to shoot, poison and trap coyote into non-exsistence. Instead, birds like the Condor have been nearly wiped out with poisoned meat, and the clever coyote may be more numerous today than ever. Despite humanities encroachment and aggression, coyote has found a way to walk its walk and survive.

Coyotes usually mate for life. They live in the sides of hills or in underground dens where the family unit is well protected. They prefer open grassland and thinly wooded brush, but can adapt to almost any environment. Because of this they have been able to survive and grow in numbers.

I once heard a story about a female Coyote who got caught in a trap and gnawed off her own paw—twice. At last report she was doing fine, hobbling around on her two front stumps, and she had borne a healthy litter. Coyotes hunt small game not with speed, but by pouncing and snapping with their jaws. She was able to do this quite well and was fulfilling her role as a mother. Those with this medicine will go to extreme measures to protect and nurture family members. Words that rip and tear another to shreds should be avoided. Sporadic bursts of energy are common and balanced action is required for ones overall well being. Excellent caretakers coyote medicine people put other peoples needs before their own. Care is advised however to give to yourself equally.

In some native tribes the coyote is referred to as the trickster. I prefer to see the coyote as cunning and clever. There are many stories about the coyote. He is known as the great one and the foolish one. Coyote does not consciously try to trick us, he mirrors our own human capacity for displaying cleverness and stupidity.

Like the coyote we can work with others to get what we want in life, or we can dive into a lake to catch a reflection. We can send troubles away or invite them carelessly. When coyote wanders into your life you are being asked to look at something you have been avoiding. Coyote is our mirror for the lessons we need to learn in order to walk a good sacred road. It will hold up the mirror relentlessly until we finally get the picture.

Call on coyote as an ally for negotiating a difficult situation. Or thank him for coming and showing you a trap that you are caught in, or a way that you are fooling yourself. Coyote is an especially powerful teacher with regard to relationships because it is when we are in a relationship that we can fool ourselves the most. Coyote is not out there to get us, but to teach us, whether we want to learn or not.