Ram Totem – What it tells us

ram totem

I thought perhaps this would be a good time to talk about the Ram totem since we are about to enter into the Year of the Ram according to Chinese tradition. 2015 will be the year of the Ram, sheep or goat depending on which interpretation you want to use. We are also (at the time I am writing this post) approaching the astrological sign of Aries which also has a ram as its symbol.

The ram, sheep or goat have been a symbol in many societies over the centuries. Often they are a symbol of sacrifice and the real animals were killed in a ritual for a number of reasons by different cultures. Our minds do not have to go very far if we consider the phrase “sacrificial lamb”.

ram figurine
Bejeweled Goat Statue, Ram Figurine for Year of the Sheep 2015

What does the Ram totem teach us?

When the ram totem is working with you it is a sign of being the season for seeking new beginnings. It is a time for some examination of where you are and where you are going. Rather than just thinking about the possibilities it is time to initiate new endeavors.

Are you taking full advantage of the opportunities that are presenting themselves to you? As you make new leaps are you also staying in balance? Are you initiating your new pursuits appropriately? Are you talking about new ideas or are you actually acting upon them? These are all things that Ram will work with us on so that we can be in touch with the powers of our minds and our imaginations. Tapping into those will take us to new heights and new adventures.

The horns are one of the first things we notice about a ram. When he is one of your totems those horns can stimulate a great deal of mental activity. People with this totem have an active imagination and a natural curiosity that needs to be fueled and those seem to get stronger as they grow older each year. This isn’t unlike the horns of the ram which grow larger each year.

In real life, the mountain goats and bighorn sheep have a unique thing about their hooves. They actually have toes that can pinch. This aides them in climbing and keeping a good foothold. Did you know that a bighorn sheep only needs about 2 inches of space to keep their balance on a mountain? Remember that a new beginning may have a very small opening but if acted upon it can still be secured, much like the ram who can secure itself in very little space.

During the autumn of each year, young rams will test their strength in what resembles the child’s game of King of the Mountain. These young rams will spin, lunge and head butt each other for the right to mate with the ewes. If you have the Ram totem, autumn may be a perfect time for you to assert your strength and move on to new challenges of your own.

totem book
Totems: The Transformative Power of Your Personal Animal Totem

You Might Also Enjoy:

Antelope Totem
Elk Totem
Deer Totem
What Is Your Birth Totem?

Leave a comment

What Do We Learn From The Coyote Totem?

Careful, You Are About To Be Tricked Into Some Knowledge

coyote totem Are you feeling like Coyote is trying to tell you something? Well, he probably is but it may not be in a way that you will appreciate as his message will come in the form of a trick. He is the ultimate in pranks that often show us the folly of our ways. He will make us laugh, although sometimes in a painful way; but he always teaches us a lesson about ourselves.

I am going to flat out admit that in the past I have been a little prejudice against this sacred animal spirit. Perhaps that came from the fact that I don’t particularly like to be tricked, as I’m pretty sure most people don’t. I have consciously passed over sharing the lessons of coyote because I just felt a little repelled by the animal. That was unfair and probably a way for me to live a little longer in denial of the importance of his message.

In the last few weeks, I’ve been drawn to this animal totem and finally got the message that I have some work to do. I also got the strong message last night that someone else who reads my blog needs to hear what we learn from the Coyote totem.

Coyote And Self-sabotage

Just like that funny cartoon character, Wile E. Coyote; we all from time to time do things that are self-destructive in nature and we usually don’t see what is coming from our actions. Kind of like when the coyote of the desert tries to catch the Road Runner by using dynamite and he doesn’t realize that he is going to blow himself up in the process.

When Coyote comes to play in our daily lives, we need to ask ourselves some questions. What are we really up to and most importantly why are we up to it? Are we playing jokes on ourselves? Is there someone we are trying to fool or is someone trying to deceive us?

Perhaps we have been conning ourselves and all around us into believing that we really know what we are doing. We’ve played that trick so long we have become tangled up in our own machinations. So, here is the thing, we need to stop and look at the acts of self-sabotage as the tricks that they are and find some humor in it all. That is right, laugh it off and change your course. Recognize the silliness that you have created, wipe off the dust and move forward.

coyote Coyote comes to us when things have gotten entirely too serious. We have to learn to laugh at ourselves or we lose the game. The real medicine is laughter and joking around because through it all we can find new viewpoints and live a much happier life. Sometimes we need to do something silly just for the sheer joy of it. I don’t mean playing harmful tricks on people, but something fun and silly.

Once, I began to reflect on the magical medicine of Coyote, I realized that it isn’t something to push away but instead enjoy with a vengeance. Quit being so stuffy, don’t try to fool yourself into thinking you are something you are not, move forward with the whimsical and silly things that we encounter in life and grow.

Although, this book isn’t necessarily about the Coyote totem specifically, it is a good source for alternative ways to make our minds and bodies healthier.

coyote medicine
Coyote Medicine: Lessons from Native American Healing

You might also enjoy:

Coyote And The Ducks

Leave a comment

Aloe Natures Skin Remedy

Native American Used Aloe

As far as I can tell from my research the Native Americans in Florida and the southwestern parts of what would become the United States were the first to use Aloe on this continent. As it became known almost as a “first aide kit” from nature its popularity grew rapidly.

aloe skin remedy

The plant was used to heal burns and wounds but also for insect bites, fungal infections, eczema, dry skin, frostbite and poison ivy. The cactus-like succulent was found to work on just about any skin ailment a human might have. Part of that is due to the ability of the gel from the inside of the plant to promote skin cells to regenerate more rapidly.

aloe lotion
Gold Bond Ultimate Healing Skin Therapy Lotion Aloe

Aloe can be found now in many products like lotions and gels but you can also grow your own plants if you like. There are also supplements that can be taken internally but you should really check with your physician before doing that.

The simplest and most effective way to use aloe is to break off a piece of the growing plant and squeeze the gel like substance from the inside of the plant. You then just apply the sap to the skin that needs attention. That is why many people have an actual aloe plant growing in their homes and offices.

aloe plant
3 Different Aloe Plants – Easy to grow/Hard to Kill! – 3″ Pots

Don’t worry if you are not known for having a green thumb when it comes to plants because the aloe plant is a tough one to kill. Just about anyone can grow them, honest! The biggest thing is to not water it too often. Succulent plants have an ability to store the water for long periods of time. Your aloe plant should also not be exposed to a lot of sunshine, either. A sandy type soil works best for this plant, also.

Like I mentioned above, you don’t have to grow the plant to reap its benefits though because there are many companies who put an aloe extract into their lotions and gels that can be used in the same way that you would use the aloe sap directly from the plant.

I’m not completely sure how the aloe plant arrived in North America because it is actually native to Africa and the Mediterranean but evidence shows that it was introduced to this continent fairly early on in history. It does kind of make me wonder if the Egyptians sailed across the Atlantic as some historians believe because the aloe plant was widely used by the Egyptians. Many early civilizations knew of and used the aloe plant for skin remedies and it is still widely used today across the globe.

You can find out more about the uses of aloe vera in this handy little book: Aloe Vera Handbook: The Acient Egyptian Medicine Plant. It gives a little history of the plant along with uses for it.

What are some of the ways you use the aloe plant? Do you purchase it in a product or do you have your own plant that you harvest from when needed?

Leave a comment

What Is Your Birth Totem?

Discover Your Birth Animal Totem


Most people know the sign of the Zodiac that they were born under. That is your Sun sign. Do you know the animal totem or birth totem associated with your birth or your Moon Sign? There are a set of native totem animals for each of the 12 moons of a year and we carry them with us throughout our lives.

We are given totems by Mother Earth according to which of the Moons we were born under. Totems of distinct animals, plants, minerals, colors, elements (fire, water, air, earth), and wind directions. We share our basic dispositions with the basic characteristics of these totems. We can learn everything about ourselves by studying these birth month animals.

Follow me as I explain the twelve animal totems and their meanings associated with each Moon of the year from Native American beliefs.

Goose or Snow Goose Birth Totem

December 22 to January 19
snow goose birth totem

Moon: December 22 – Jan 19 Earth Renewal
Animal: Goose or Snow Goose
Plant: Birch Tree or Bramble
Mineral: Quartz or Peridot
Color: White
Spirit Keeper: Waboose (White Buffalo)
Power Direction: North
Element: Earth
Elemental Clan: Turtle

Determination and Resourcefulness

Persevering, determined, and ambitious to a fault, the Goose Totem sets goals for accomplishment, and always obtains them. The Goose is determined to succeed at all costs not for the approval of others, but Goose Totem competes with their own internal foe. Driven is Goose Totem’s dominating personality trait. If you want something done, give it to the Goose! – from Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams

Otter Birth Totem

January 20 to February 18

Sea Otters
Sea Otters

Moon: January 20 – February 18 Rest & Cleansing
Animal: Otter
Plant: Quaking Aspen or Fern
Mineral: Silver or Turquoise
Color: Silver
Spirit Keeper: Waboose (White Buffalo)
Power Direction: North
Element: Air
Elemental Clan: Butterfly

Joy – Primal Feminine Energy

Otters awaken curiosity. They remind us that everything is interesting if we look at it from the right angle. Birth Totem Otter is in a continual search of information, ideas and concepts. However, in their enthusiasm to glean as much knowledge as quickly as possible, there may be a tendency to skim the surface, rather than explore the deeper waters that would result in truer understanding.

A little eccentric and unconventional, the Birth Totem Otter is a hard one to figure sometimes. The Otter Totem’s methods aren’t the first ones chosen to get the job done. This is a big mistake on the part of others because although unconventional, the Otter’s methods are usually quite effective! The Otter Totem may have an unusual way of looking at things, but is equipped with a brilliant imagination and intelligence. – Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams

Wolf Birth Totem

February 19 to March 20
wolf birth totem

Moon: February 19 – March 20 Big Winds
Animal: Wolf
Plant: Plantain
Mineral: Turquoise or Jade
Color: Blue-Green
Spirit Keeper: Waboose (White Buffalo)
Power Direction: North
Element: Water
Elemental Clan: Frog

Teacher – Pathfinder

Wolf is the pioneer, the forerunner of new ideas, to teach and share with others what they have learned. Wolves have an enormous sense of family as well as a strong individualistic urge. Baying at moon is wolf’s desire to connect with new ideas just below the surface of consciousness, for the moon is a symbol for psychic energy. – Medicine cards by Jamie Sams

A Book Teaching Of The Power Of Animal Totems

wolf totem
Totems: The Transformative Power of Your Personal Animal Totem

Red Hawk or Falcon Birth Totem

March 21 to April 19
red hawk birth totem

Moon: March 21 – April 19 Budding Trees or Awakening
Animal: Red Hawk or Falcon
Plant: Dandelion
Mineral: Fire Opal
Color: Yellow or Yellow-Green
Spirit Keeper: Wabun (Golden Eagle)
Power Direction: East
Element: Fire
Elemental Clan: Thunderbird or Hawk

Mental Speed – Agility – Focus

A natural born leader, those with a Falcon Totem are always looked upon for clear judgment in sticky situations. Falcon never wastes time; they strike while the iron is hot, and take action in what must be done. Falcon is honored and respected for its keen eyesight, speed of flight, and precision of movement.

Beaver Birth Totem

April 20 to May 20

Beaver Gnawing Bark of Alder Branch Cut for Food (Castor Canadensis), North America
Beaver Gnawing Bark

Moon: April 20 – May 20
Animal: Beaver
Plant: Wild Clover
Mineral: Jasper – Bloodstone
Color: Blue or Yellow
Spirit Keeper: Wabun (Golden Eagle)
Power Direction: East
Element: Earth
Elemental Clan: Turtle

Dream Builder

Beaver is the builder of the Animal Kingdom, and has a strong sense of family and home. In building its home, you will find several entrances and exits.

Beaver never limits itself to one escape route. Beaver’s lesson for us is: ‘not to paint ourselves in a corner’. In addition, Beaver is well equipped to protect its creation.

Deer Birth Totem

May 21 to June 20
deer birth totem

Moon: May 21 – June 20 Complanting or Flower
Animal: Deer
Plant: Yarrow
Mineral: Moss Agate
Color: White and green
Spirit Keeper: Wabun (Golden Eagle)
Power Direction: North
Element: Air
Elemental Clan: Butterfly

Gentleness – Innocence

The Deer is lively, quick-witted and always aware of her surroundings. Ever alert for the subtlest of movements and the slightest sounds that warn her of impending danger. Yet, her own flightiness often leads her straight into the sights of the hunter.

Jamie Sams Teaches About Animal Totems

medicine cards
Medicine Cards: The Discovery of Power Through the Ways of Animals

I use these cards quite often during the month. It is fascinating how accurate the messages are with what is going on with my life when I do a reading with the cards. Sams also gives instructions on how to determine what your nine power totems are by using the cards. A very nice book with the information about each animal represented on the cards and the medicine they teach us.

Woodpecker Birth Totem

June 21 to July 21/22

Pileated Woodpecker, Caddo Lake, Texas, USA
Pileated Woodpecker

Moon: June 21 – July 21/22 Strong Sun
Animal: Woodpecker
Plant: Wild Rose
Mineral: Carnelian Agate
Color: pink or rose
Spirit Keeper: Shawnodese (Coyote)
Power Direction: South
Element: Water
Elemental Clan: Frog

Sensitive – Emotional – Protective

Birth Totem Woodpecker is the most nurturing of the animal symbols, the consummate listener, totally empathetic and understanding. The primary focus for Woodpecker is to be completely devoted to another, even at the expense of the self. When Woodpecker bores into a tree in search of insects for food, she uses her beak and head to drum out the holes and uncover her meal. This symbolizes to us, to gain emotional perspective, to learn detachment, and to use our head instead of recklessly following our heart.

Salmon or Sturgeon Birth Totem

July 22/23 to Aug 21/22

Moon: July 22/23 – Aug 21/22 Ripe Berries or Ripening
Animal: Salmon or Sturgeon
Plant: Raspberry
Mineral: Garnet
Color: Red
Spirit Keeper: Shawnodese (Coyote)
Power Direction: South
Element: Fire
Elemental Clan: Thunderbird or Hawk

Wisdom – Inner Knowing

Salmon, despite strong river currents, will always return to the place of its creation. Its determination is driven by the wisdom of instinct and inner-knowing, which yields a sense of purpose that cannot be stopped by outside forces. Salmon tells us to trust our gut feelings and inner-knowing.

Salmon teaches us to see every bend in the river as a new adventure, with a lesson we need to learn to grow, even when the flow of life seems to push us back, we can tap the hidden resources of our human spirit.

Brown Bear Birth Totem

August 22/23 to September 21/22
brown bear birth totem
Moon: August 22/23 – September 21/22 Harvest
Animal: Brown Bear
Plant: Violets
Mineral: Amethyst
Color: Purple
Spirit Keeper: Shawnodese (Coyote)
Power Direction: South
Element: Earth
Elemental Clan: Turtle

Keeper of Unconscious Knowledge

Bear seeks honey, or the sweetness of truth, inside the hollow of an old tree, and enters the cave, or womb, to hibernate, and to digest the year’s experiences. Bear seeks answers while hibernating, or dreaming, and then is reborn in the spring. Bear teaches us that to accomplish the goals and dreams we carry enter the silence within. If we choose to believe that there are many questions to life, we must also believe that the answers to these questions resides within us.

Animal Spirit Guides Handbook

Animal Spirit Guides: An Easy-to-Use Handbook for Identifying and Understanding Your Power Animals and Animal Spirit Helpers

Raven or Crow BirthTotem

September 22/23 to October 22/23
raven birth totem

Moon: September 22/23 – October 22/23 Ducks Fly or Falling Leaves
Animal: Raven or Crow
Plant: Mullein
Mineral: Jasper
Color: Brown or Blue
Spirit Keeper: Mudjekeewis (Grizzly Bear)
Power Direction: West
Element: Air
Elemental Clan: Butterfly

Keeper of Sacred Law

Crow knows the Unknowable Mysteries of Creation and is Keeper of All Sacred Law. This Totem signifies first-hand knowledge of a higher order of right and wrong than that indicated by Human Law. Crow see the physical and spiritual world, ( as humanity interprets them ) are an illusion and can simultaneously see the past, present, and future. Crow merges the light and darkness, seeing both inner and outer reality.

Snake Birth Totem

October 23/24 to November 21/22

Moon: October 23/24 – November 21/22 Freeze Up or Frost
Animal: Snake
Plant: Thistle
Mineral: Copper
Color: Orange or Violet
Spirit Keeper: Mudjekeewis (Grizzly Bear)
Power Direction: West
Element: Water
Elemental Clan: Frog

Wisdom – Healing – Symbol of Eternity

The shedding of Snake’s skin symbolizes the transformation of the life-death-rebirth cycle. They are compelled toward evolution and transformation, driven to discard the past and emerge with new ‘flesh’. It is the energy of wholeness, cosmic consciousness and the ability to experience anything willingly and without resistance. It is the
knowledge that all things are equal in creation, and that even things experienced as ‘poison’ can be integrated and transmuted with the proper state of mind.

Owl Birth Totem

November 22/23 to December 21
owl birth totem

Moon: November 22/23 – December 21 Long Snows
Animal: Owl
Plant: Black Spruce
Mineral: Obsidian
Color: Black or Gold
Spirit Keeper: Mudjekeewis (Grizzly Bear)
Power Direction: West
Element: Fire

Elemental Clan: Thunderbird or Hawk

Magic and Wisdom

Owl hunts his prey at night. Not only can Owl see in the dark, it can also accurately locate and recognize any sound. This gives it a great advantage when seeking food. Owl’s feathers are silent. You cannot hear an owl when it flies, but its prey definitely knows when it strikes! Owl is a symbol for wisdom, because Owl can see what others cannot. No one can deceive the Owl about what they are doing, no matter how hard they try to disguise or hide it from the Owl.

Animal Totems Taught By Ted Andrews

Animal-Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small

I own this book and refer to it often. I like the detail that the author gives on not just the animal spirits but the other aspects he touches on, also.

I know this post is rather long but I thought you might enjoy having a brief description of all of the birth totems in one place. If you want to know more about an individual birth totem and all of his or her messages just do a search at the top of the page.

Leave a comment

Garlic As A Medicine Rather Than Food

garlic I think that it is probably not a surprise to many of you that garlic is more than a vegetable to help flavor foods or to ward off vampires. It has regained its popularity as a healing agent in the recent past but it has been used by different cultures around the world for thousands of years. Our Native American ancestors were no different and found several uses for this pungent little vegetable belonging to the Allium family.

American Indians Used Garlic For Many Things

If someone had experienced a snake bite or had a wound that needed healing, garlic was used to aid in that healing process. When a member of the tribe had a respiratory ailment, a syrup was made with garlic that would relieve congestion and fight off the bacteria causing the infection in the lungs and bronchial tubes.

Their biggest discovery that was nothing short of a major medical breakthrough when the Europeans learned about it was that garlic is very high in vitamin C which could be used to cure Scurvy. At the time, many of the people who had made that long trip across the ocean were suffering from this disease because of the lack of foods available that were rich in vitamin C. Scurvy could be fatal and the American Indians helped to cure many with their garlic remedy. Pretty profound for a people who were looked at as savages at the time!

Modern Science Hails Garlic

There have been literally hundreds of scientific tests done with garlic in recent years. Researchers of today have found that there is an antiviral and antibacterial property to garlic when it is crushed. This is from the substance that is released called allicin. Not only will it work for getting rid of viral and bacterial infections but it can also work on infections caused by fungi and yeast. Some are even using it to combat those awful flu viruses plaguing people across the globe.

Our Native American ancestors already knew that this vegetable could assist in clearing up lungs and bronchial tubes when they were congested, modern researchers are finding that it does indeed help due to the oils contained in the plant. Long before modern scientists began to study the benefits of garlic, our ancestors also knew that the sulfur contained in garlic will help rid the body of parasites and worms.

Recent findings have shown that garlic may be an important factor in reducing the risk of heart attacks. It can reduce blood pressure, reduce levels of the harmful LDL cholesterol in the blood, and reduces the tendency for our bodies to form blood clots. Some researchers believe that one glove of garlic a day is enough to produce these protective effects for our hearts.

It has also been found to help with diabetes, migraine headaches, irregular heartbeats, and poor circulation in the legs. It might even protect against certain types of cancer.

Methods Of Use For Garlic

garlic cloves The simplest and most beneficial way to use garlic is to eat it and preferably raw. That is an acquired taste, I have to admit but it is the most helpful way for your body to receive it. The good news is: garlic will retain its medicinal properties when used in other forms.

You can make garlic tea! Not exactly the most tasty of teas but if you are suffering from the cold or flu it will help you. Chop or mash several cloves and let them steep in a cup of water for 6 to 8 hours. You can drink it as a tea or use it to gargle with if your throat is sore.

Garlic Oil can be used for helping with a earache. Mash a clove of garlic and add a tablespoon of olive oil. Heat this mixture briefly and then store in a dark bottle that has a good stopper. Use when needed.

Syrup with garlic takes a little while to make but it is worth it. To a quart of boiling water add 1 pound of garlic. Remove from the heat and let stand for 12 hours. Add enough sugar to make it the consistency of a syrup. This can be used to help with coughs. The taste isn’t so great so some people will add honey or other things to help with the taste. Some believe that if you take small amounts of this syrup each day that it will help build your immunity and help your heart stay healthy.

Nature’s Bounty Odorless Garlic 1000mg, 100 Softgels (Pack of 3)

Another easy way to reap the benefits of garlic for daily use is to use a supplement like the one above.

Before using garlic, please consult with your physician to make sure that there are no medications that you may be taking that would interact in a dangerous way to your own body.

1 Comment