People often ask me about the Native American Totems and how they work. Generally when I try to explain to them by using an example of an animal totem that is working with me, they say I want that totem too. It really doesn’t work that way. The Animal Totem picks you because you need to have the lesson. You have totems that stay with you from the time you are born and those are determined by the Moon you were born under. Throughout your life you will have Messenger Totems that will come to you with a lesson that you need. The Messenger totems can be with you for a day, a week, or an extended time. It depends on how long it takes you to listen and learn from the message.
I use the Medicine Cards from Jamie Sams to learn about the totems that work with me on my journey here on Mother Earth. They are in essence a form of Tarot from the Native American perspective. To find out the 9 totems that are always with you (who have chosen to be with you) you can do the initial spread which is outlined in the beginning of the book that goes with the cards. After you have determined your power totems you will find out a little more of your purpose in this lifetime.
Medicine Cards: The Discovery of Power Through the Ways of Animals
There are other spreads that you can place the cards in to look into specific areas of your life and what is going on in the now. I do these occasionally to get a broad picture. Daily, I pick 1 card from the deck to see which animal is working with me on a daily basis. There are times the same card returns for days. I don’t find this odd as it tells me that the message of that animal still needs to be worked on. I’m always amazed at how dead on these cards are with what is happening in the here and now.
You do not have to use these cards to be aware of what animal is working with you. If you are suddenly drawn to a certain animal that animal is working with you. It might be that you are physically seeing them more than usual. It might be that you see pictures of that animal and it catches your attention. You are suddenly more aware of a particular animal. Pay attention and do some research on the animal as this is one way that the Native American Totems are calling to you.
~Mitakuye Oyasin~ We are all related
In some sites it shows owl as totem for Nov 23- Dec 21 and in some it shows and elk so which is it. Can we both ?
Hello! Thank you for stopping by. You are correct; in some places you will see the Owl as the birth totem for Nov 23-Dec 21 and in others it may say it is the Elk. It basically boils down to the difference in tribal customs. It has been my experience that the Owl is more prevalent as the birth totem for this moon than the Elk but again, depends on the tribal traditions followed. Personally, I don’t think that you would have both as your birth totem. I think that you will feel stronger or more bonded with one or the other but not both. For instance Owl people are usually lively individuals who are self-reliant and have a real eye for detail. They are physically courageous and have a real need for the freedom of self-expression. Elk people are athletic and competitive in their nature. Often times Elk people will be teachers and coaches.
If you are looking for the meaning of the Wolf totem, there are 2 posts on this blog about them. One is the general explanation of Wolf totem as a birth totem which is found in the Birth Totem Category and the other is in the Animal Totems category under “Is Wolf Talking To You?”
I hope this helps you in your Quest.
please, anyone can say something about my question?
i found this interesting blog ans I would like to say the meaning of the wolf totem for native americans
Huh! Fascinating….I didn’t know all of that. I am fascinated by Native American culture. I love how connected they are still to the earth and nature. The majority of modern day culture is so disconnected, but it seems to make so much more sense the other way.
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It is pretty fascinating and thank you for visiting today.
Thanks for this post. It is difficult (but ultimately rewarding) to help people understand the purpose of their totem animals.
I think it is hard for most people to understand that every animal has it’s own important and unique characteristics and talents, and that one animal isn’t “better” than another.
Trying to help my own people understand totems too!
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First, I just want to say I’m so sorry that you lost your mom. It sounds to me as if your Grandma was waiting to bring your mom over with her.
I’m so excited! I get a post on the Wolf! I do love them. Thank you!
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I have often wondered about why I am drawn to certain animals and why they would come to me in the wild. This explains an awful lot. Have I ever told you I have had two wolves for pets? They were both previously wild. One currently resides as queen of our home.
My father, a Cherokee Indian, has always attracted animals of all sorts. He has a crow that comes around a few times a year to see him. We know it’s the same one because of a broken leg that never healed properly.
Bev, I love this blog and the new theme is beautiful. I’m learning quite a bit here. Thank you 🙂
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Holly that is so cool! We can learn so much from Brother Wolf! I’d say that if I were to do your cards one of your power totems would be Wolf. Tell you what, I’ll do a post on Wolf for tomorrow…just for you.
Crow medicine for your Dad is strong too. That is so awesome.
My Grandmother comes to me once in a while as a Cardinal. Call me weird but I know it is her. She told us that she would come to us as a Cardinal after she left this life. When it is Grandma the cardinal is the brightest red you ever saw. She will sit and make sure that we notice her. She will make eye contact. A few years ago when we were losing Mom to pancreatic cancer I was at the hospital. My husband called and said, “Bev there is this cardinal that is almost taunting me. It keeps flying at the door and then flying to the car and making the biggest racket you ever heard. Even flew at my head!” I told him that it was Grandma and she was trying to tell him that he needed to get to the hospital to be with me. We lost Mom that very night. Grandma knew!
And thanks for complimenting the new theme…I’m loving it!