The Beauty of Totems
Standing proudly is the Thunderbird totem, its carvings took time, its been worn by weather, sun, rain… standing tall among the trees, even on a cloudy day its colors are bold…Totem poles are wonderful examples of aboriginal art – the ancient practice of totem carving has been handed down through the generations as a way of preserving the history of local native heritage across the lands, as well as honoring tribal rituals and sacred spirits of people. Each tells a story; each honoring and keeping the ancestors and spirits alive.
This picture was taken in Victoria Canada a few years ago, it held magic and spoke loudly to me.
I’ve written about finding one’s animal totem in Healing Heartaches and in several blogs, and I’ve often talked about journalling as a tool to assist in finding that animal guide or totem that best fits a person. I cannot begin to suggest what particular animal or spirit may be calling to anyone at any particular time. But if you are attune to your surroundings and to your life rhythms, you will find yourself drawn to a certain animal spirit… you will know when it is right.
The same can be said of things that we enjoy; art, music, t.v. shows and the like. They come to us at different times and it is often determined by our mood or our circumstance. There may be a day when classical music is just right and at other times smooth jazz is the right fit! There may be a time when you are driving down the road and a song comes on the radio that takes your breath away! Life is like that, forever in transition, constantly moving with the fluidity of change. The constant seems to be in the rolling in and out of the tide; we can be reasonably sure that it will roll in and roll out again… just as we can be sure not to turn our back on the ocean, she may surprise us! Life, people, times of the season come with their own surprises, their own frustrations their own heart sagging moments… There are storms of life that leave us weak in the knees, while at times others create storms and are surprised when it rains on them.
Yes, if we go through the storms of life we are more appreciative of the rainbows, but then again I am appreciative of most things most of the time… so I don’t need to be cold to appreciate the warm rays of the sun! I will however agree to appreciate Old Man’s Winter, and I will bask in the sun of summer as well.
If I give you permission to grieve, I too must give you permission to experience joy ! If I give you permission to cry, I too must give you permission to laugh with wild abandon…
That is the body-mind-spirit connection. and at times it is difficult to maintain balance in the center of the sacred hoop.
The reality is, I do not have the power to grant permission to anyone… I am but one person; I am but me, sharing my thoughts and often will say and write and share things to make others dig deep and think along the way.
I am a firm believer of empowering others… if you are reading these blogs, you have access to the computer, so go forth and succeed! I wish you great success, but I really do not have the time to find the resources for you and that would really be taking part of the fun out of the whole process wouldn’t it? Ask at bedtime for your spirit guide/totem to present itself to you in dreams…. focus and be mindful in the day/night… Does a certain animal continually come into your mind or show up for a visit? Are they a messenger … one that allows you to know there is no distance… Do you take the time to say hello, to give thanks and to still get that all over feeling of “great gratitude and connection”?
When they leave you, do you wish they had stayed just a little longer, talked a bit more, stared just a moment or two longer for the impact to have stayed with you longer until the next time? Did you just keep walking and later regretted it?
Did you remember to say, “thank you”…
Oh my the stories I could tell of the visits others have had, that seem so unlikely to experience, that are so frequent… The totems that folks find to represent the circle that is unbroken and carry all the time with them in pockets, leave on desks, in the ashtray of the car… The empowerment that comes along with each and every moment.
The stories… passed down and around and the thoughts about them that range from “that is just crazy to wow that’s just wonderful”.
The Thunderbird’s name comes from the common belief that the beating of its enormous wings causes thunder and stirs the wind. Perhaps that is why it is often seen on top of the totem poles! A very powerful image is that… to think a bird could beat its wings hard enough to cause thunder and stir the wind. One can only imagine what we could do if we were to just try… just move out of our comfort zone, out of our circumstance with the intensity of desire, the want of doing a little at a time and determination of Thunderbird. Start small and work tall. Start with an idea and move to a thought, from there to an action… from there to a plan… from there… work the plan! Be the change you want to see. Next thing you know the winds of change are happening and it will be a result of you moving your wings, your mind, your spirit and soul.
There were totems all over BC I noticed while there visiting, each with their own story, their carvings bringing the aged wood to life with colors and stories. The rich history and wisdom known best to the carver, often told by the shop keepers and those who were local in the towns. What a wonderful way to keep history alive, don’t you think?
Thinking about your totems, your spirit/animal guides/stones that mean something… remember you can often find small carvings or stone carvings in Native American shops or bead/rock/New Age stores that sell crystals, etc… You can then carry them in your pocket or make a small pouch/medicine bag or just carry your special totem with you, keeping it nearby at all times. It provides comfort when needed, strength when called upon, a reminder of what you need that lives within you!
I hope you are having a blessed day; a day of warmth, a day of balance including a bit of fun and laughter!
Walk In Beauty,
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