Showing posts with label Totem Animals. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Totem Animals. Show all posts

Totem Animals of Shamanism


Creatures, as well as all trees, shamanic rocks, tradition, cliffs, and other elements of shamanism – play a vital role in the community's well-being in Huachuma elements of shamanism. 

Each living aspect of nature, I believe, has a spirit and, as such, should be valued as a spiritual companion. Animals are far more than mere terrestrial beings that are often referred to as "domestic companions." 


They are a fundamental "connection" in the physical sense, assisting mankind in deciphering Nature's mysteries and returning to their basic position of wholeness in and with the Universe. 

Furthermore, since all facets of the natural world must be recorded in our DNA at different points of humanity's evolution, I agree that all aspects of the natural world must be registered in our DNA. 

As a result, we will watch animals in the wild, listen to their calls, and learn a lot about them, including the physical benefits of certain medicinal plants, soothing ingredients, and therapeutic workouts. Totem species are animals that have a particular meaning about them. Their job is to assist us in a variety of circumstances that, in typical cultures, could mean life or death, or that, in the contemporary world, could help us reconnect with our more instinctual self. 


Totem animals are animals that represent each region of the earth. 

The Spirit of the Kangaroo may be used by Australian Aborigines to lead them through their Dreamtime. 

On their long sea travels, Polynesians could have the spirit of the Whale as a reference. When doing Pipe Ceremonies, North American Indians may have an Eagle as their totem. If they tread gently down their spiritual journey, people with wisdom watch the influence and behaviour of all these creatures to better appreciate their harmonious position as one of Nature's children, and therefore their effect on the earth. 

The Eagle in the Pipe Ceremony, for example, will assist an individual or a group in approaching a situation from a perspective other than that of the ego. It will soar to great heights in the sky (the sky reflecting the Higher Self) and sail away from tensions and personal complexities, transcending mundane and confined circumstances that could be creating discord in the individual or group. It sees life from an entirely different angle (for example, it can see the larger picture without being distracted by small details). 

Totem creatures, as spiritual companions and protectors, will convey very valuable personal messages to us. 

They have the ability to draw attention to areas of our lives where there is a disparity. Let us use domestic animals as an example since most of us in the Western world are familiar with them. A cat, for example, may kiss a portion of our body or a dog may stay unusually close to us for an extended period of time. 

What the animals are doing, whether we realize it or not, is actually shamanic: they are assisting us in removing toxic energy from our bodies. We may be shocked to learn later that we have arthritis in the same spot where the cat licked us, or where the dog stuck next to a part of our body that is now injured. 

These animals sensed an imbalance until it became apparent. They removed the toxic energy from our bodies as spiritual partners, allowing us to easily regain equilibrium. We can help ourselves before the imbalances appear if we can understand what they, our animal totems, are saying to us.


Elements in Nature and Totem Animals Rather than merely becoming conscious of the unnatural universe in which most of us in the modern world exist.

It might be more necessary to become aware of our totem animals and all of the forces of nature that come to us, either physically or in visions, in order to keep in contact with Mother Earth and live in peace with her. 

The Ayahuascero families with whom I lived in the Amazon were inextricably linked to the forest and all of its species. The Jaguar is a totem animal for the Ayahuasceros, which means that its spirit assists the group on both a physical and metaphysical basis. The shaman sings an icaro, his "song of influence," and calls to the Spirit of the Jaguar, requesting it to be present in the mesa shamanic ritual (see the chapter "The Four Direction and the Mesa"). 

He converses with the Jaguar as if he were conversing with a mate. He recognises the animal's personality and becomes one with him as a result of this contact. In reality, the terms for shaman and jaguar are synonymous in many Amazonian languages. The shaman can walk effortlessly on the ground and in the water thanks to the power and determination of the jaguar, whose soul is not different from his own. 

This animal's piercing eyes allow him to see in the dark, climb trees, observe the energy of the land, water, and sky, and be more easily in touch with the natural world. Members of the group will participate in this rite if they see the shaman embarking on a long journey into the forest. 

They regard him as a jaguar. As the ritual progresses, they continue to ask him questions that will allow the group to see the world in a new light by gaining the animal's vision, strength, and mental abilities. The group members can discover better ways of collecting food, capturing fish, and discovering special areas where they can collect valuable items by having their totem animal, the Jaguar, as a guide and companion (such as gold, medicinal plants, seeds, remedies etc). We wouldn't dream to have such a close bond with a jaguar as the Ayahuasceros because we don't dwell in the South American rainforest or jungle. 


However, we often see or feel the spirits and/or powers of animals, trees, rocks, rivers, and other objects in our dreams. 

A child might dream of a tiger, for example. This indicates that he is dreaming of a part of himself that wants to be honored (possibly the part of himself that is scared of growing up alone, away from his parents and the security he has known). 

Sometimes, the boy in his dream is terrified of this aspect of himself, and instead of loving the tiger and the pleasure of growing up, he runs away from it. He is sticky and sweating when he wakes up, and he tells his parents about his dream feverishly, seeking consolation from them. His parents, who have been raised to assume that the tiger does not exist, and the boy, who trusts his parents implicitly, do not know that the tiger reflects his own fears about which he is attempting to come to grips, and he believes his parents when they say he has just had a "bad dream"... even though he also investigates to see if there is no tiger lurking under his bed! 

The child's psyche, which has not accepted the tiger, has now been conditioned to be separate from this aspect of his deepest Being, and this programming has become a personality trait. Under the influence of humanity, the tiger under the bed fades out, and through maturity, the sense of alienation and loneliness has been strengthened. This child is attempting to flee from the shaman, with whom he is acquainted. The shaman experiences Totality rather than isolation. 

To take things a step further, an adult who once dreamed of being pursued by a tiger will continue to confront photographs or items depicting tigers or other members of the cat family, with each encounter providing a chance to overcome his childhood fears. He could work as an archaeologist and be intrigued by the cats that guarded the pyramids (places of initiation and transformation) in ancient Egypt, or he could become a veterinarian, nature photographer, or zookeeper, or simply cultivate a hobby of collecting cats (books, stamps, porcelain, etc). If this scenario occurred in a shamanic society, the shaman may suggest a ritual to help the adult understand and acknowledge the guiding force behind his behavior. 

The person is encouraged to develop a more full friendship with the tiger during the ceremony. He would then be able to let go of certain situations that have kept him from realizing his childhood dream of owning a tiger over the years. He might realize that he had to choose between confidence (love) and fear in his dream. 

Returning to fear now will mean going down the path of escape, which at this point leads nowhere. In the other hand, if he acknowledges the tiger as a valuable mate, a totem animal, and wishes to trust and respect, to welcome and become one with the tiger, he will learn to trust that Life nourishes us all the time and belongs to all of us with bravery and strength. The tiger can instill trust in him in any situation that causes him panic. 

With such questions, the shaman's activity in the Amazonian forest is a phase of transition towards Unity and Totality. This, I think, has been forgotten in the West for a long time. 

The shaman's transition is driven by Nature's majestic unity, which includes its birds, trees, cliffs, and rocks, so Nature will make us realize that our inner life cannot be kept in the darkness of isolation on a continuous basis. Nature, in turn, offers all of the answers we need if we can recognize them as such.


Over everything, life is derived from a close friendship with Mother Nature and the Cosmos. 

Totem animals and other natural elements are there as divine companions to assist us in reuniting the fragmented parts of ourselves. Similarly, metaphysical work will assist others in reclaiming their lost link to the Universe. And if we do not live in the Amazonian wilderness, we need even more totem animals and natural elements to help us in our "urban jungle." Our bodies, our inner selves, need a connection to and a harmony with Life's instinctual rhythms. Nature's influence can therefore be evoked by engaging in a direct interaction with all of its facets. Seeing a bird in the sky encourages our body, mind, and spirit to take flight. Since our cells have remembered this room of liberation, we will fly in our dreams. It's important to remember that when we fly, we're reconnecting with our natural sense of independence and our place in the Universe, not just a conceptual relationship with a bird or some other part of nature. In truth, all elements of nature work together to create a harmonious cosmos; otherwise, everything will fall apart. 


Nature will remind us of its rules in a positive or negative way when a part of our self is distracted by anxiety and imbalance. For eg, we may fantasies about a blazing sun and a sky so devoid of clouds that our planet becomes a barren wasteland. The desert represents our lack of connection to the outside world, or we can freely embrace sunshine into our bodies, minds, and feelings, allowing our Spirit to shine like the Sun. In the need to dominate Nature, humanity has lost the basic fact that being one with the animals, trees, and mountains allows us to accept a significant part of ourselves.


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