I’ve hesitated to write about this, as I know some folks, friends and family whom I treasure and respect, may find folly and scoff at this. But that’s largely the point of this blog; to explore my own experience and share what I find, perhaps even assisting others on similar journeys. With that in mind, I discard my shyness and reticence and open my heart fully to you.
The concept of the Spirit Animal or Spirit Guide is as old as human culture, and most aboriginal peoples have a similar tradition. It’s really only when we “civilize” that we tend to abandon the more esoteric spiritual beliefs.
With my current quest to broaden my experiences and truly get to know myself on the deepest possible level, I’ve explored a few such traditions, and fully intend to continue to do so. In the process, I’ve consulted some spiritual “mentors” and advisors, and have completely embraced the concept of meditation. Meditating has, with zero exaggeration or hyperbole, truly changed my life. I’m calmer, much more laid-back, and simply better when I take “me” time and connect with myself and my source.
It was through meditation that I discovered my spirit guide. You see, I’d done enough surface reading to have allowed myself the conceit that I…thought…I knew what my totem would be. I followed a guided meditation technique designed to open one’s self to such contact. Through it, I was guided through the normal relaxation measures; breathing and releasing tensions as well as connections to my seated self. Eventually, I found myself in a fog. I was on a bridge spanning a misty river. The fog was incredibly thick and I could feel the moisture on my skin and beading on my eyelashes. It was a fairly rickety bridge; wide enough for a car, but clearly intended only for foot traffic. The rope handholds were cold and slick, but I held tight anyway. I was honestly expecting a spider to crawl over the rope and onto my hand, as this was what I had convinced myself would happen, so imagine my surprise when an immense snorting breath preceded the emergence of a massive trunked head parting the mist.
The huge pachyderm reached out to me with its warm, dew-drenched trunk and gently caressed my face before stepping fearlessly onto the bridge, which didn’t buckle or sway at all under its weight. The instant it touched me, I KNEW. Like I had always known, but I certainly hadn’t. It’s like when I go home after a day at work and first see Jacquelynn; the key in the lock.
It fit. 100%
I’ve read a bit since, of course, and meanings/interpretations include reliability, steadfastness, higher spiritual consciousness, great responsibility, etc, etc…
I don’t know all of what it means yet, but I know for certain that I can feel it with me at all times now. I can sense the soft, sensitive “lip” of the trunk and the raspy, dry skin against my shoulder.
I only know that it’s real to me, and that’s all that really matters. Not that I’m watched over by it, but that it’s truly part of me. Symbolic and material at the same time.