START WORKING WITH YOUR SPIRIT ANIMALS TODAY

Whether it’s a beloved pet, a fluffy social media meme, or even a lowly housefly, animals are reaching out to you constantly to offer their assistance. Aria Mae shares how to work with your spirit animals and start receiving their medicine. Main Image: Mathilde Aubier

 

It’s the third raven you’ve seen this week. Or, your friend mentions otters just moments before you notice a billboard featuring their fuzzy faces …

Are these coincidences, or something more? Serendipitous events are actually the language of animal medicine. Animal totems can come to us in many ways—you simply need to open wide to receive the magic! It’s easy to forget that we, too, are part of the animal kingdom, and that out furry, scaly, and feathered friends are asking to communicate with us all the time!

If you have a specific animal that you feel wants to work with you, read more about how to work with your spirit animal here.

If you’re new to working with spirit animals, here are five ways to start working with their medicine right now  …

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1/Pay attention
You could have an animal dream, vision, shamanic journey, or an encounter in nature … but there are also reminders for us in magazine ads and funny videos posted on Facebook. Yes—spirit animals are responding to technology by being present in virtual spaces!

Notice what element(s) the species is associated with, what the archetypal characteristics of this animal are, both in our culture and in other societies, and what kinds of messages you receive when you tune in to this species. 

When you track your spirit animals moments, you will see the patterns and signs of species reaching out to you.

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2/Ask for Visions
Remember that you can ask your animal animals specific questions too. Seeking guidance for a big decision? Request their assistance!

While riding a bus on one of the most dangerous mountain passes in northern India, I asked my spirit animals for help. Immediately I had a funny vision—in my mind’s eye, I saw a tiger hopping around inside the bus, totally enjoying the harrowing adventure. It reminded me to let go in that moment and to enjoy the ride!

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3/Build Uncommon Altars
There are so many species we don’t think of as “power” animals, and yet they contain huge medicine for our lives—think insects, worms, or other creepy-crawlies, predators we don’t romanticize, like hyenas, and birds we love to hate like starlings and vultures.

Pick something that really bothers you about these creatures, and ask: what are these spirit animals messages for me? Create an altar with images of them, a love poem, and something to represent their favorite foods as an offering.

As you pass your altar daily, feel gratitude for the role this animal plays in their ecosystem, and remember your own importance in nature, too. 

 

Image: Sean Gadoury

4/Cast Spells, in Love
Writing poems is a beautiful way to draw boundaries with spirit animals while also honoring them. I use this often for so-called “pests” like mosquitoes and ticks when I’m out in the woods. If you live near the ocean, you could do this for sharks or jellyfish …

For example: Ticks I love you/But I don’t need you/Find your food another way/Leave me in peace on this glorious day!

The trick is to hold the poem spell in love, not fear. Be grateful for your ability to enter the spirit animals’ homes, as you practice holding boundaries.

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5/Own YOUR Animal Medicine
A beautiful thing about our relationship with other species is realizing we can give our own animal medicine back … We are spirit animals, too! 

What does your unique medicine look like? Do you want to donate your time to a farm sanctuary? Can you organize a fundraiser or give cash to a well-researched wildlife fund? Is it time to adopt a rabbit, rat, or donkey from a shelter?

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And most importantly, have fun with it! Let yourself be in awe of the inchworm that somehow landed on your sandwich. Smile and wink at the ducks in the pond at the park. Surrender to the beauty of the housefly before you open the window to let it outside.

Keep this attitude of joy at the forefront of your journey with animal guides, and you will receive more than you imagined possible … 

Aria Mae is an Ancestral Healer, Priestess, and Spiritual Heart Surgeon. She creates heart-awakening medicinal experiences through her Magical Monday private retreats, three-month AWAKEN program, and group gatherings. Using a medley of family constellation therapy, shadow work, sociology, animal communication, tantra, mindfulness and love, Aria helps others mend what may have been deemed “broken” by life’s trials – forever activating the vibrancy of their heart’s intuitive abilities. 

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: BLESSINGS, BOUNDARIES, AND HIGH VIBE JULY 4 BOOZING

Plus a moment of swap-shop glory and a meeting with the mind behind Shaktibarre…Numinous founder Ruby Warrington shares her Mystical Week

:: MONDAY ::
Still buzzing from yesterday’s beautiful Blessing Way ceremony for my dear Victoria Keen. We gathered, we ritualled (yes I’m making this a word), we created an altar, we shared memories and we set intentions. My favorite part of ALL? When we took an actual bone-fide cauldron (purchased by our host at a Brooklyn junk yard) filled with fears and sage, out into the street to be burned away. As Victoria lit her fire, we stood around her in a circle of sisterhood, playing drums, shaking rattles, and singing. At the height of the Williamsburg brunching-hour. YES we got a lot of stares, and YES it felt so right to be bringing this kind of s*it out from behind closed coven doors!

:: TUESDAY ::
A l’il psychic moment in my favorite clothing swap-shop the Buffalo Exchange (first introduced to me by Goddess Gala Darling). I’ve been taking my cast-offs there for the past two years or so and have racked up a serious amount of store credit, so I stop by whenever I’m in the area for some guilt-free retail therapy. Today, as I’m browsing the racks, this little voice goes; “some Isabel Marant shoes would be nice, right?” I’m like, “yeah, higher self, sure would!” And YEP, found these beauties (below)—boots not sandals, BUT, my size, UN-WORN, and FREE (cos of my store credit).

What a beautiful lesson in the all-abundant nature of our Universe! Namely: when we just listen to our intuition, everything we desire is right in front of us; when we give freely of ourselves (or our old clothes), not necessarily expecting financial pay-back, we will get it back 10-fold; and when we don’t attach to the details, is when we grant the cosmos permission to surprise us in all kinds of magical ways.

:: WEDNESDAY ::
A lesson in boundaries. My first reaction when a friend in need texts to say: “I may need somewhere to stay the next few nights, can I have your sofa?” is to reply with a straight up “no.” Some things are a non-negotiable, and my sacred morning alone time is one—as such, I usually only have family stay over in my home. Sorry-not-sorry, but I’m also a believer in strong boundaries as a marker of self-respect.

But THEN I’m like: woah, here I am preaching (check out my IG account etc.) about how we need to create a world that looks after our most vulnerable first, and how the current political climate change is giving me a new depth of compassion for the displaced people in the world…like my friend who’s being kicked out of her apartment! And the first time I’m asked to walk the talk, I stumble.

Humbled, I text her back—”shit, of course, mi sofa es tu sofa, ANY TIME.” By which time she’s found somewhere, and actually goes on to tell me how MY strong boundaries are a lesson for her in cultivating the same in her life. HOWEVER, it was a moment of pause for me in terms of what it means to be a good Now Age hippie global citizen. #bethechangeyouwanttosee

:: THURSDAY ::
A meeting with incredible, inspiring Corinne Wainer, founder of the new Shaktibarre studio that’s coming to Williamsburg in August. Reasons I love this woman No.1: She’s all about the shaktivism (spirituality + activism), and so her studio has sliding scale pricing to make classes + workshops accessible to ALL, with the underlying mission of uniting women in the fight against body fascism in the yoga community. No.2: She’s a total no-smalltalk zone. No time + no interest = no holding back. No.3: She guessed that my spirit animal is a black stallion (which he is, I write about how I met him here). So suffice to say, watch this space for some Shakti-Numi collabs coming your way later this year.

:: FRIDAY ::
Regular readers will know all about my path to raise my overall vibe with sobriety—which has meant totally re-framing my relationship with alcohol. Which basically means treating like it’s as powerful a mind-and-heart expander as, say Ayahuasca, and thus only imbibing with extreme reverence and caution. And then along comes a big fat trigger like JULY 4 WEEKEND.

And you know, I likely will have a couple of cocktails Sunday, since I booked tickets to this super high vibe event (flyer below)—high vibe as in, it’s outside, it starts at 2pm, it’s on the West side so there will be a sunset situation, and it’s alllll my favorite DJs so I can be guaranteed an afternoon of truly emotionally resonant tunes.

And here’s another reason to maybe raise a glass (but really, how about just one?) this weekend. It’s America’s birthday—and America could really use some truly intentional toasting rn, and some reminding that far from broken, she’s just going through a rough patch. As a Cancer country, I think this weekend’s reading from Strong Eye Astrology resonates for the good old US of A pretty darned hard:

Cancer :: Cancer Rising
Taking a horse over jumps. You are sitting in the driver’s seat. But where do you want to go? We can so easily get caught in an image of ourselves. But who do you want to be? This is a fresh start. Now is the time to visualize about who you are becoming. Get very, very specific in your intentions.

*NB: read the weekend forecast for your sign here!

NEED-TO-KNOW: YOUR SPIRIT POWER ANIMAL

Dealing with a situation that had left her feeling vulnerable and alone, when Ruby Warrington met her spirit power animal last year…it got emotional. Here’s how to connect with your own beast of the wild unknown.

Somewhere in the garden of my subconscious, a powerful black stallion is biding his time, waiting for me to call on him. The horse exudes the kind of strength that needs no armor. He’s as high as a house, and his sheer presence makes my body quake. But he’s also calm and loving, and will always, forever and a day, be loyal to me. How do I know? Because the stallion is my spirit power animal, and when I met him it was one of the most moving encounters of my life.

The story begins at a dinner in New York City, thrown by the publicist Kelly Cutrone for her client, fashion designer Raif Adelberg. Kelly’s been a long time supporter of The Numinous, so I knew something mystical was up when she told me I had to meet him. And sure enough, before long we were discussing the fact that Raif’s power animal is the orca, or killer whale.

Of course I was instantly intrigued. How did he know? Did we all have a power animal? How did the whale show up in his life? In response; he was given his animal reading by a friend, a Native American chief, after discussing with his wife (also Native) her butterfly power animal. Yes, we all have access to backup from the animal world. And in his case, Raif feels connected to his animal in many ways.

In a literal sense, “I live on an island (off the coast of Vancouver), where orca actually play in my backyard,” he told me. But the killer whale is also known in the animal kingdom for its steadfast family values. They mate for life and travel in packs, and in Raif’s case; “I feel most secure with the comfort of my family around me.” How cool that he even got a tattoo of a butterfly years before he met his wife.

My subsequent mission to meet my own power animal led me to modern shamanic practitioner Marika Messager, and a deep guided meditation – over Skype – that transported me from a still, Tuesday afternoon in my apartment in NYC to the dank depths of the forest that exists somewhere in the middle of my being where my stallion lives.

I met other animals – a hedgehog, butterflies, even a Unicorn – en route, but only when I found my horse did my skin prickle all over with goose bumps and the tears wet my face. They were tears of relief. I had recently experienced something that had left me feeling quite vulnerable and alone in the world, and the transference of strength, sheer power, from the horse to me, felt like being rebuilt from the inside out.

Before you embark on a journey to meet your own power animal, here’s what you Need To Know:

• To meet your power animal you need be relaxed enough to access your subconscious. This means shifting your brainwaves into a theta state (similar to a meditative state). Shamans use drumming to do this, but hypnosis can invoke this same sense of deep of relaxation.

• In shamanic tradition, it is thought that we have three power animals, from the air, land and sea. Although you may meet many more, depending what’s going on in your life at the time and the kind of healing they can offer you.

• Our animals are there to lend us their wisdom. To fully appreciate the message your power animal has for you, research how the animal lives, mates, socializes, hunts. What lesson is there for you in the animal’s habits? For example, an eagle might appear to remind you to view a difficult situation “from above.”

• Mythical animals – dragons, unicorns – may appear to you too. But all animals are equal; no animal is “better” than any other.

• The first time you meet your animal, first thank him for his presence. After that, you can ask him questions, to which he may reply with a vision, a sensation or a voice in your head. Be aware that his support may appear in any of the ways you usually connect with your intuition.

• Once you have met your animal, or animals, call on them in times of need. For example, the horse symbolizes freedom, so call on him whenever you are feeling restricted by beliefs about your supposed limitations.

• Finally, your animal may continue to appear to you in “waking” life – in iconography, conversations or popular culture – to remind you of his continued presence in your life. Acknowledge him with a wink when he does.

Marika Messager assists, advises and counsels people in all areas of their lives, through a blend of executive, life, career and transition coaching, mentoring and healing. She has developed an interest in indigenous healing practices and particularly the influence of consciousness and the mind on the healing process. In her work, she bridges and blends these techniques to encourage and empower her clients to find the answers they seek within.

www.marikamessager.com