Spider Totem: Spirit Animal Meaning of Spider

Spider spirit animal image
For more about Spider spirit animal meaning, watch my video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unpDsV9ORVg

Spiders. They evoke our wondering admiration, and our horror, both.

On the one hand, we have the miraculous, ethereal beauty of a spider web, like a garment woven for angels. On the other, a horrifying entity creeping into our nightmares, or emerging from the darkest imaginations of a Tolkien or a J.K. Rowling.

Why do Spiders, more than any other animal, elicit such a spectrum of emotion?

I believe it’s because, more than any animal I am aware of, they embody the power of the Deep Feminine—an energy that is deeply misunderstood in our culture.

The thing to remember is that feminine energy is all about connection. This is what makes it so super powerful. On the one hand (in its Light aspect) it’s the driving force behind Oneness. On the other (in its dark aspect) it can be horrifically manipulating and subversive.

Here are just a few of Spider’s powers:

Spider web

Positive (Light) Spider Energy:
  • Creativity
  • Patience
  • Persistence
  • Emotional Awareness
  • Magnetic Allure
  • Networking/Connectedness
  • Wealth attraction
SpiderNegative Spider Energy (dark side):
  • Ensnarement
  • Calculating manipulation
  • Venomous thought
  • Vampirism

Whew – that’s quite the list! So if Spider appears to you, be aware that she may be pointing out tendencies towards any of the above in you or someone you’re dealing with.

I’m not going to go super deep into Spider symbolism here (if I did it might take all night). And I am definitely not in the mood right now to delve into its dark aspects. (Although I just released a Spider video that touches on the topic.)

For now, I want to focus on one of Spider’s strongest and most positive aspects: Creativity. The act of Bringing Forth.

Spider is an absolutely fantastic power animal for anyone wishing to expand their creative abilities, and especially for creative people wanting to make a living from their skills. A few thoughts:

spiderweb

  • Watch a spider spinning her web. It will just about put you in a trance. Spider demonstrates complete attunement to a pattern that comes not from intellect but from her own inner knowing, manifesting it precisely and deliberately in the physical world.
  • Notice all the different types of spider webs in the world – the variety is breathtaking. Besides the beautiful orb type web, there are cobwebs; funnel-shaped webs; the little gossamer webs you find in the lawn; even trap-door-like webs that aren’t meant to ensnare but to hide a spider so that it can ambush its passing prey. And check it out – they’re ALL awesome. You won’t find a Spider comparing her web unfavorably to her neighbor’s!
  • To continue that thought, some webs are notable for their beauty, some as amazing feats of engineering. Creativity is not just the realm of artists! How does your own creative self want to express him- or herself?
  • Patience is another of Spider’s virtues. And Faith. Most spiders have to wait to be discovered. Sometimes a while!
  • Persistence, too. Despite being crafted out of one of the strongest materials in existence, spider webs are fragile and sometimes have to be rebuilt again and again. Spider just doesn’t give up. (If you’re an aspiring author trying to get published, take note. Some of the world’s most successful authors only got published after they got rejected again, and again, and again.)
  • Notice that the web is both a beautiful creation and a source of livelihood for Spider. No reason the two have to be mutually exclusive. “Starving artist” myth be damned! (Including the healing arts!)

Well, like I said I could sit here riffing on Spider all night. But I’d like to get some sleep. So if you want to know more about Spider, check out my latest YouTube video here. (And discover a simple exercise you can do to open yourself up to a more feminine, creative style of vision.)

(P.S. Next time you find a Spider in your house, please don’t smash her. Find yourself a yogurt tub with a lid and gently remove the little artist outside where she can spin her dreams in peace.)

Do you feel a connection with Spider? I’d love to hear your thoughts below!

Did you enjoy this post? Christie

Did you enjoy this post? If you did, you will enjoy my newsletter, too. I share positive affirmations, spirit animal information and artwork, and spiritual insights for awakening souls. You will also get a free guided meditation to help you meet your Spirit Animal! Just hit the “follow” tab in the menu up top to subscribe.

Spirit Animals vs. Angels: What’s the Difference?

“Spirit animals and angels, one ‘n’ the same or no? I’d like to tune more into my angel if she isn’t shaking her head and going now what are you doing lol”

A good question from a curious client! 😉 I’ll do my best to answer here, to the best of my knowledge and experience.

masculine feminine balance angelSpirit animals vs. angels: what’s the difference, if any?

Spirit animals and angels are both spirit beings. And in my experience they are both positive spirit beings (as opposed to spiritual entities with a negative or malevolent energy or intent.) Although I suppose it’s possible for an animal to get warped into something negative through the influence of some negative power, I’ve never come across it.

In my experience spirit animals range from neutral positive to actively benevolent. Angels are always purely benevolent.

The most obvious difference to me is that spirit animals are definitely ANIMAL. You can generally sense what kind of animal it is.

Angels, on the other hand, can show up in different ways. Often they appear in some sort of human form, whether it’s as a vision or in art. They can also show up as an orb of light, a feeling of warmth, unseen hands, etc. I think they take human form so often because it is so easy for us to relate to them in that form. It must make it easier for them to communicate with us that way!

Going a bit deeper, though, my sense is that spirit animals and angels have different origins.

Where do Spirit Animals come from?

I have a very strong sense that Spirit Animals are of the earth. They are creatures of Mother Earth and very much connected to Her.  You can think of a spirit animal as being the essence, or wisdom, of a particular species of animal. (Or sometimes the essence of a particular type of that animal, Spirit Buffalo with matlike a white wolf as opposed to a black wolf.)

As creatures of the earth, and as animals, they speak to our instinctual selves, our subconscious selves, our animal nature. (Or, depending on your background and beliefs, you might consider that they are a part or emanation of our own instinctual selves.)

In the shamanic tradition, the earth/nature/subconscious realm where power animals make their home is known as the Lower World.

Spirit animals teach us how to reconnect with our healthy, wild instincts. In this world of ours that is very important for coming back to a sane path of living, a sustainable path that will keep us long-term healthy both as individuals and as a society.

From whence do Angels come?

Angel painting copyright Anne C Michelsen 2015

Angels, on the other hand, come from above. That is, they are beings of the Upper World, or Heaven; Light, and pure consciousness.

Angels help us to expand our consciousness and grow and evolve spiritually towards ever higher consciousness and spiritual vibrations. It is their job and their pleasure to support us in our journey; however angels won’t jump in where they aren’t invited. Once you open yourself to their assistance, though, you will likely experience extremely powerful changes in your life.

Communicating with your Angels and Spirit Animals

You can ask your angel to communicate with you. Just intend for his/her guidance on whatever topic and tell her you’re ready and willing to hear from her, and thank her for her presence. Then stay open to guidance. It could come in the form of a dream, or a sudden inspiration, download of wisdom, message, or synchronicity of some kind. It usually happens when you’re not expecting it! 🙂

You can do the same with spirit animals. If you feel a connection with a particular animal, ask it what it would like to tell you. However spirit animals are more animal-like and may appear shy or even (rarely) hostile or sarcastic at first. I suggest doing things to honor your animal, such as wearing its image or offering tobacco. After a while if you are sincere and if it really is a match for you, it will likely come around and work with you.

Have you had both spirit animal and angel encounters? What do you feel are the biggest differences in working with them? Leave your reply below! 

 

Did you enjoy this post? Christie

Did you enjoy this post? If you did, you will enjoy my newsletter, too. I share positive affirmations, spirit animal information and artwork, and spiritual insights for awakening souls. You will also get a free guided meditation to help you meet your Spirit Animal! Just hit the “follow” tab in the menu up top to subscribe.

Are you living your Purpose? A spirit animal’s perspective

“The purpose of life is Life.” – Joseph Campbell

circle sm

I channeled this painting for a client recently. The image came first, but it felt like something was missing. So I took a break and started cleaning out a shelf in the studio. And as luck would have it a piece of paper fell out with these words printed on it:

The Sun is a Circle/The Moon is a Circle/The Earth is a Circle/We are a Circle

Everything that is, is alive/And everything has a place on the Circle.

I remembered someone handing that sheet of paper to me at an event I attended last fall, but I don’t know who the author is (or if it even has an author.) Regardless, it seemed to provide the missing element.

The message that comes through to me here is all about grounding, and balancing, and relaxing into the art of being.

Being, in terms of feeling oneself a part of all that is.

Knowing that simply being is enough.

We often spend such time and energy worrying about “Purpose.” And indeed some of us do have a burning mission in life. 

That’s beautiful when it happens, but what if your purpose isn’t clear to you? 

I think the bird in this painting has something to say about that.

You might think at first that it is a Crow. I did, when I first saw it in my mind’s eye. But once I got it down on paper it was quite clear that this spirit animal was not a Crow, but a Grackle.

A Common Grackle, to be precise.

Grackles are indeed common birds. If you live in the eastern half of North America you’ve probably seen these black birds gathering in noisy flocks in treetops, or strutting across your lawn. They are boisterous, opportunistic birds that eat nearly anything and are actually much more likely than crows to steal corn.

At first glance you might not think there was much about a Grackle to write home about, with its somber dress and creaky voice. But if you look more closely at the Common Grackle you will see that it is really quite a striking bird. Its head and neck are not actually black but are covered in iridescent feathers ranging from purple to green to bronze. It has a distinctive white eye that contrasts sharply with its body. And its elongated, v-shaped tail lends a graceful touch to its figure.

To me the Grackle’s message is to appreciate the beauty, magic and majesty of ordinary, everyday life. To honor one’s physical being and delight in the strength and power of the body as a divine vehicle for Spirit. 

It also connotes the night, a time of feminine power. In fact, the grackle
with its white eye resembles the feminine “yin” of the famous Chinese yin-yang symbol.

We are all a part of the body of Mother Earth. Our bodies, our blood: her soil and water sparked to life. Our breath and her air are one. Her fire burns in our souls.

Is it not enough to simply be? Were we not born into the world as sacred beings? Can not our most simple, everyday actions become so infused with love that they are in themselves a prayer that is felt, seen, heard and understood without need for words or explanation?

That is the power of the divine feminine – a power that is felt, wordless, in the body and expressed naturally when we share the joy of living with others.

Just as a gorgeous iridescent rainbow lies hidden in the Grackle’s “black” feathers, so there is hidden treasure in the commonness of our lives.  A treasure we often miss in our pursuit of Purpose.

But sometimes, when we allow ourselves to quiet down, to ground ourselves and simply be, Purpose has a way of revealing itself after all.


This artwork is available as an 11″ x 14″ fine art print.  Click here to purchase.  

 

Did you enjoy this post? Christie

Did you enjoy this post? If you did, you will enjoy my newsletter, too. I share positive affirmations, spirit animal information and artwork, and spiritual insights for awakening souls. You will also get a free guided meditation to help you meet your Spirit Animal! Just hit the “follow” tab in the menu up top to subscribe.

Message from Turtle Totem

“Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.” – Lucille Ball


DTurtle on birchbarko you, like many highly spiritual people, ever feel out of place and socially awkward in mainstream society? If so, this message from Turtle is for you. 

Turtle came forward the other day while I was working with a client who feels that way at times. I thought this part of Turtle’s message to that person might be helpful to others as well: 
Turtle is a very cosmic symbol – one Ojibwa medicine man I know told me Turtle represents “all of life”, and there are several myths where Turtle carries the Earth on her back.

Many species of Turtle are awkward and slow on land (the everyday world), but graceful and swift in the water (the spiritual world). So Turtle often shows up for people who are highly spiritual, to help them ground themselves. Turtle’s message to you today is to accept yourself and be loving and compassionate towards yourself. If you find yourself feeling out of place in everyday life, work or society, just think of Turtle, center yourself, and smile.

You have the power to bring your spirit energy into the mundane world, just by being present. That is a great gift. Don’t feel like you have to “fit in.” Most people don’t have that connection as strongly as you do which is why you don’t relate to their everyday actions and words. In actuality, these people often feel insecure inside. When you accept yourself and stay grounded in your spiritual connection, others will feel it. You may find that they start to gravitate to you. You will have a calming influence on them, and while you may still not feel quite like one of them, you will earn their love and respect.

Turtle is very self-contained, and knows how to protect itself. The shadow side of this can be a tendency to retreat into one’s shell. You have developed powerful spiritual protection that you may not even be aware of. It is safe now to stick your head and limbs out of your shell. As you move forward you will find that the shell remains to protect you, but it will become more and more transparent to let the light that is within you shine forth.

If you are feeling shy about bringing your healing gifts into the world or simply being yourself, remember Turtle. Imagine her protective shell around you as you swim forth, bringing your Light out into the world! 🙂
Is Turtle your spirit animal? What does Turtle mean to you?

 

Did you enjoy this post? Christie

Did you enjoy this post? If you did, you will enjoy my newsletter, too. I share positive affirmations, spirit animal information and artwork, and spiritual insights for awakening souls. You will also get a free guided meditation to help you meet your Spirit Animal! Just hit the “follow” tab in the menu up top to subscribe.

Armadillo Spirit Animal Meaning

Armadillo One thing I love about Nature is you never know what she’ll come up with.

 

This little fellow is a case in point. Looking like a cross between an anteater and an armored tank, the Armadillo is an ingeniously clothed little critter and is the only modern mammal with a shell. Since I’ve had him show up for a couple of people lately, I thought I’d take some time today to share his message.

What is the Spirit Meaning of Armadillo?

Armadillos are found exclusively in the New World, and there are about 20 species of them. I’m going to focus here primarily on the 9-Banded Armadillo, which is the only one that ranges into the United States. However, if Armadillo comes into your life you may want to look up the particular species you are dealing with. Studying its specific behaviors and characteristics – which may differ a bit from those of the 9-Banded type – may help you discover its message to you. (Also be aware that many of the Armadillo species are named after the number of armored bands at their waist. If your armadillo is one of these, you may also want to delve into numerology and/or angel numbers as well.)

 

If there ever was a spirit animal that resonates with the Root chakra, Armadillo is it. Root chakra energy is all about grounding, safety, and security. With its portable armor and its ground-dwelling habits, this burrowing creature is definitely a security-oriented animal. Some species can actually curl up into a ball. Others will press themselves into the ground when threatened, protecting their soft, vulnerable underbellies. On the other hand, Armadillos are fast runners (up to 30 miles per hour!) and will also sometimes jump several feet straight up into the air when startled. This can be a super effective strategy when they are faced with a coyote or dog, but unfortunately often backfires when it comes to cars, earning them the nickname “Texas speed bumps.”

 

Armadillos eat mostly insects, especially soil-dwelling ants, grubs, and termites. Like their relatives the anteaters, armadillos have sticky tongues which they use to collect their insect prey. They are one of the few animals that can comfortably feed on fire ants, which can’t penetrate their thick armor.

 

When Armadillo shows up for a person it often points to issues with security and feeling safe. When out of balance, this can include the tendency to withdraw or curl up into one’s “shell.” It can also manifest as jumpiness or flightiness – the instinctive tendency to react without thinking to perceived danger, sometimes with disastrous results.  Grounding exercises can help restore a sense of inner security and balance Armadillo energy. Healthy Armadillo energy manifests as the ability to stay super calm and level-headed even through situations that would “bug” other people.

 

The Armadillo is a warm-climate animal. It doesn’t have the fat stores or ability to hibernate that would allow it to thrive in cold weather. However, within limits it does overcome these shortcomings by altering its behavior according to its surroundings. During hot spells, it tends to be nocturnal. When the weather turns chilly, it will switch to more diurnal habits. On cool nights, this typically solitary animal will sometimes invite others into its burrow as well, huddling together for mutual warmth. This – along with their armor – points to Flexibility being one of the lessons Armadillo is associated with. Armadillo people can easily show signs of being hard-headed and inflexible. However, they may surprise you at times by their ability to adapt, especially in the face of hardship.

 

One interesting thing about Armadillo is its tactics for crossing water. They don’t swim in the normal sense of the word. Often, they will hold their breath – which they can do for up to six minutes – and walk along the bottom. However, some species also have the ability to super-inflate their stomach and intestines with air, turning the animal into sort of a living inflatable raft. Armadillo teaches us to discern when to plod methodically through a situation according to a set path or plan, and when to simply go with the flow. 

 

If Armadillo calls to you, start observing your own behavior. When is it advantageous to be unyielding? When would it best serve you and others to be flexible and accommodating?

 

Armadillos have poor eyesight, but an excellent sense of smell. Many also sport long, stiff hairs that protrude around their armor and which function rather like whiskers, helping them feel their way around. If Armadillo is your totem, you likely have a strong sense of intuition, and can probably smell out danger and/or opportunity a mile away. However you might not be particularly visionary, unless you also work with more celestial spirit guides such as any of the raptors, or angels.

 

Nine-banded armadillos have some very unusual reproductive habits. Like bears, they are capable of delayed implantation – meaning they can carry the fertilized egg around for months before the embryo actually starts to develop. A female nine-banded armadillo always gives birth to a litter of four offspring, and they are always genetically identical quadruplets. Armadillo energy thus can lend support to creative projects in which a high degree of consistency must be maintained. However it may be necessary to wait until conditions are right before starting such a project.

 

Finally, one more interesting fact about armadillos.  They can actually be carriers for leprosy! Since leprosy is an old world disease, they undoubtedly picked it up at some point from us humans. Leprosy is a bacterial disease that results in loss of sensation, which ultimately can lead to loss of extremities because there is no pain to tell a person that what they are doing is harmful. Spiritually, this can correlate to the tendency to suppress emotional pain,which can lead to isolating oneself in some way – whether from parts of oneself, from healthy relationships, etc. Self-loathing, ostracism, and shunning of some sort may become part of the picture as well. If Armadillo is part of your spiritual team, watch for this pattern – and know that this is not something native to you. There is nothing innately unlovable about YOU!!! (Just look at that cute little Armadillo – he is adorable, isn’t he???) 🙂 (If this kind of pattern persists, though, I would encourage you to consider embarking on Heart chakra work.)

 

Hope you’ve enjoyed this. If there’s an animal you’re curious about let me know. When I get poked enough to write up a particular animal I will eventually do it! 😉

Did you enjoy this post? Christie

Did you enjoy this post? If you did, you will enjoy my newsletter, too. I share positive affirmations, spirit animal information and artwork, and spiritual insights for awakening souls. You will also get a free guided meditation to help you meet your Spirit Animal! Just hit the “follow” tab in the menu up top to subscribe.