There is a lot of talk about the difference between Animal Spirit Guides and Animal Totems. At the risk of sounding simplistic, for me there is no real difference.
Your Animal Spirit Guide will present itself to you in a form you can understand and relate to in terms of its qualities.
For example, if your Guide would like you to identify it with immense strength, power and intelligence, with a fierce and predatory nature, because that is what is going to help you to achieve your Sankalpa in this lifetime, it might present itself to you as a tiger or lion. On the other hand, if you need to be more subtle, or perhaps hard-working and in tune with others, you might find your Guide looks like an ant. Ok so that’s a little extreme, but it’s a possibility.
There are a lot of great (and possibly not so great!) videos and meditations out there on how to go about meeting your Animal Spirit Guide. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, my favourite book on the subject is Ted Andrews’ How to Meet & Work with Spirit Guides. However, once you’ve found your guide, what do you do with it?
Let’s imagine you meet your spirit guide and it’s a Male Lion. What are the qualities of Male Lion?
It’s a fierce predator, lives in a pride, eats the cubs of other lions. So in real human life, that means: stalk your spiritual goal with relentless determination as if your life and the life of your clan depended on it, cultivate excellent relationships and bonds with the other people in your clan, be strong and defend them, and singlemindedly develop your spiritual lineage. If your Spirit Guide is Female Lion, you also need to stalk your Sankalpa with terrifying focus, and you need to develop your Sangha / spiritual community more and be more defensive of smaller people.
So that’s all well and good for your inner journey and spiritual goals, how about honouring your Animal Spirit Guide in a real way?
Giving to conservation charities that pinpoint the animal you work with is an amazing way to say thank you. However, if you’re a little strapped for cash at the moment, following them on social media and sharing their posts also goes a long way towards helping.
How do you enjoy and celebrate the bond between you and your Animal Spirit Guide?
I know a former mixed martial arts fighter who wears a silver whale tie pin. Whether he know it or not, his Animal Spirit Guide is Whale. Do you wear leopardskin patterns? Do you have bear fridge magnets? Do you visualise your Guide walking down the street with you? Do you meet it in non-ordinary reality and hang like bffs? Let us know in the comments below.