Calling Your Power Animal

I heard about guardian animal spirits and calling them with a totem – so what’s the difference between them and spirit guides? And what is/are my guardian animal spirit/s?

Dear Mostafa,

Thank you for a most interesting question!  Your totem/medicine/power animal is a very powerful, very complex symbol, and is tied directly to ancient Egypt’s mythology and spiritual beliefs.

To answer the first part of your question, guardian animal spirits are, indeed, a form of Spirit Guide, and their various names arise from different shamanic or spiritual traditions. Shamans are men or women from ancient and modern cultures all over the world who serve as intermediaries or messengers between the human and spirit worlds.

The Native Americans of the Pacific Northwest in the US and Canada call them totem animals, and they are an important aspect of that region’s carved sacred art, known as totem poles. “Medicine animal” comes from referring to shamans as “medicine” men or women. Of course, a shaman’s power animal is a very important part of their “medicine” or power, because it is not only a spirit helper, it also literally defines the nature of the shaman’s magical and healing powers. Typical Native American guides such as bear, eagle, hawk, serpent and buffalo, for example, each confer different abilities, and a different set of spiritual gifts. It’s important to learn about your power animal’s life in the wild, its habitat and social, hunting, mating and parenting habits, as part of understanding the gifts it confers.

Your power animal is the mongoose, a member of the same family as the meerkats which have been popularized on the television show “Meerkat Manor.”

The mongoose in ancient Egypt was often a household pet, and was considered sacred because of its ability to hunt and kill the dangerous hooded cobra. The cobra was one of the ancient Pharaohs’ most important symbols of power, and it appeared on their crowns representing the Goddess Wadjet, one of the earliest Egyptian deities. The cobra was said to not only protect the Pharaoh-kings, but also to confer inner sight and the ability to control universal forces.

When killing a cobra, the mongoose crushes the serpent’s skull with its jaw, and then eats both the venom glands and the head, as it is immune to the poison. Symbolically, this means that the mongoose is not only strong, agile and clever enough to defeat its powerful enemy, but by eating the cobra it also takes on the very qualities which gave that enemy power. Therefore, mongoose, like cobra, confers inner sight, the ability to direct universal forces using the Law of Attraction, and other powers conferred by the serpent. The mongoose’s agility and cleverness are also qualities shared by people who have mongoose as a power animal.

But, most importantly, mongoose’s crushing jaw means that you must be very careful of what you say, and how you say it, because your words have exceptional power.

May you use mongoose’s magic wisely, Mostafa!

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