In Shamanic theory, all things have consciousness. Rocks, trees, plants, bodies of water, all beings have a spirit or an energy about them. Everything is created from energy. It is a simple step from seeing all things as created from the same substance to being able to recognize your oneness with them. In this view of the universe, one learns to see that everything has value, purpose and meaning.
All humans also have animal counterparts. The spirit of the animal that most closely resembles their personality and their life energy is their animal persona. You may have one main Power Animal or many animal allies. Totems are those other things in the natural world that are vibrating with the same or similar energy as that of the spirit. There are certain rocks, woods, plants and geographical areas that seem to hold a special attraction, vibration or "feeling" for everyone. This is because the energy contained in these animals, objects or places is like the energy of the person who is drawn there. We are energized or aided in our life path by these things as they lend their energy to us, they help us to focus, they strengthen, purify and clarify our mind, body and spirit.
Common objects, plants and animals were used for the survival of the people who walked in the shamanistic path. However, the people did not see themselves as superior or greater than the things they collected or used to survive. They revered the animals that provided them with food and clothing, had great respect for the land, the water and the wind. And in all cases, a prayer of thanks was given to the spirit of those animals and objects that helped them to survive. Anyone who destroyed something out of anger or who purposely or cruelly harmed a living creature was thought to be someone who had lost sight of reality.
Totems then became the objects that the person felt attracted to, things that gave them an emotional, mental or physical reaction. Totems are those things that comfort, energize, clarify, calm or seem to bring pleasant results.
Generally totems are rocks, small pieces of wood carved into shapes or creatures, antlers, feathers or any other natural substance that gives one a feeling or an energy. Totems should be chosen or created after meditating or journeying and feeling oneness with the universe. During meditation, one should suggest that the higher self reveal those things with which you are most in tune and that which will bring the best energy.
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