You can find more Mandalas / Animal Totems in my Labels and Links (but give me time if there's nothing there just yet, I'm working on it!)
I have begun to look on Earth's creatures - even the ones that are scary to me or annoying or that I've perhaps been guilty of treating as lesser than me/mankind - in a totally different, respectful light.
In general, I have heard people repel certain animals and insects so much sometimes and I now wonder... what is it about that animal's presence in an individual's life that they so vehemently hate it? Call it "evil-looking", or a pest, or perhaps want to kill it.. just 'cos?
One such notably derided animal is the Australian Raven (the most common found here in Victoria is the one with the ruffled feathers at the throat - it 'caws' like the crow but also has that gutteral throat thing going on, if you know the one I'm talking about it'll be familiar to you). So it is interesting to note the teachings of this totem. What is it about this learning that repels individuals? What do you think about ravens?
As with all Mandalas posted on my blog, this Mandala is shared here with the blessing of Peace Space.
Raven is the largest member of the crow family. This big black bird has deep purplish-blue feathers that glisten in the sunlight with a green metallic sheen, and long throat feathers that are consicuous when Raven calls. Raven's flight consists of slow, deliberate wing beats and its strong limbs allow it a determined walk on the ground.
Ravens benefit from a range of environmental circumstances and, being monivorous, they thrive on food left by humans and other birds as well as carrion and road kill. Farmers often blame these birds for killing sheep and lambs, but this is not necessarily true. Raven will take only lambs that are already dead or those already so weakened by starvation or mismothering that they are nearly dead. In summer months, Ravens rely on insects - grasshoppers and other agricultural pests, grain-grubs and ground-grubs. Displaying precise timing, Ravens feeding from road kills can get out of the way of oncoming traffic without appearing to be frightened of imminent danger, and will return to feeding once the traffic has passed.
Preferring open territory to forested regions, Ravens are nonetheless adaptable and watchful in their environment whether these be open spaces or urban areas. They use a sentinel system to guard their ground and often create a ruckus when intruders approach. Humans often find their cawing annoying. Always in each other's company, a Raven pair will bond for life and show little mating ritual display, except the occasional chasing of each other. Once fledged, young Ravens spend 3-4 months in the parents' territory before cutting family ties and becoming part of passing nomadic flocks. A young Raven will not breed for another three years. The mortality rate among Ravens is high in teh first year of life so the Ravens we do see have clearly weathered life's knocks. Ravens enjoy life. They demonstrate the ability to find what they need for survivial and take every opportunity to thrive. When Ravens catch their reflection in a window or shiny object, they peck at their reflection as if in opposition to what they see.
The wisdom of Raven comes from its strength to walk its life, thriving rather than merely surviving. Raven is about honouring the hurts and difficulties of the past without being trapped in any victim-consciousness of that past. Raven's wisdom is about allowing death to come to old weaknesses and inabilities, and about breaking the ties of family patterns that restrict you on your path of growth. Raven shows you how to stand strong and confident in yourself and confirm your right place of being. Raven lives in the Now and trusts that the universe will provide what is needed.
You too will receive what you need when you trust in yourself and not in your fears. Be like Raven when it hops or flies out of the way on the highway in the face of oncoming traffic. Step aside and let your fears pass. Return to your aims and goals in life without letting your spirit be dampened. Raven uses intelligence and asks you to do the same, by keeping an open mind and avoiding crowding thoughts. Raven's black colour represents all that can be brought into new life. All new life emerges from darkness and Raven reminds you of teh creativeness and magic within yourself that let nurturing new life into your being. Meditate with Raven and speak your own truth when you fear others may not appreciate your position. Let your confidence and determination have their voice heard and remember to call upon the assistance of others when you feel vulnerable in the face of difficult situations.
When you hear Raven's cawing, it could be time for you to check how you sound when you communicate with others. Do you speak in unison and harmony with others or do you boast to cover your perceived inabilities or insecurities? Perhaps you need to balance the male and female energies within you and find good company with yourself rather than comepting with others and tending to override them. Just as Raven pecks at its reflection in the glass window, look at your own reflection and make any changes needed to bring new growth to your own individuality. Expand your horizons so that you can experience what you need to thrive. Understand how weakness affects those who, instead of finding their own true indiviual path, only follow. Determine to find your own way. Raven helps you to stand out in the crowd so that your own true colours can shine through.
Magic Creativity Determination Thriving Fears Reflection
18. Diamond Doors, Bright Indigo