Animal Guides for Beginners

This page was created for those who are interested in finding out the traditional meanings of some of the many animal guides [frequently called 'totem animals'].
I have researched their meanings extensively,using native american, celtic and other traditional sources.
Each entry has a brief description of what each of the guides can provide their followers.

Bird Spirits
Animal Spirits

armadillo   Armadillo teaches protection and self-preservation.

Armadillo is one of the most unique appearances of all the animal kingdom.  It looks like a cross between a turtle and an anteater.  Indeed, its name is spanish for "mutated freak of nature."  It has a hard outer shell which protects it from the harsh elements and predators.  Unfortunately, this armour does absolutely no good against cars.  Their carcasses can be seen littered across the highways of the American Southwest.

  • Armadillo's special Gift is Being Used As A Basketball By Mexican Children.

bat Bat teaches Transformation and Renewal.

Bat has a long history of association with the cycle of death and rebirth.  This is due in part to their nocturnal nature and their ability to see in the dark.  The association with death can be seen most prominently in goth culture; most goths have a life span of six to nine months after their first application of white pancake makeup.  This is due in part to the chemicals they snort up their upturned noses, grenadine poisoning and Darwin's law of survival of the fittest in the form of industrialists and ravers: they simply cannot exist in a friendly and healthy environment.

  • Bat's special Gift is Getting the Living Shit Kicked Out of Your Undead Arse.

cat Cat teaches mystery, independence and the power of seduction.

Cat has been linked with mystery and seduction since before the days of the ancient egyptians.  Their image has survived through the middle age, when they were thought to be familiars of witches.  Even today, they are thought to have special abilities and understanding of things not normally available to humans...many a cat keeper has observed odd behaviour such as chasing an invisible something  about the house and detecting odd weather in advance of its arrival.  This has nothing to do with any mystical abilities, but rather the fact that all felines are born brain damaged.  They are all born with iqs roughly equal to the number of claws they have.

  • Cat's special Gift is Total Uselessness and Always Being On The Wrong Side of the Door.

chicken Chicken teaches the importance of service and sacrifice.

Followers of Chicken are generally passive, quiet people who live to serve others.  Chicken folk hold Self-Sacrifice in the highest regard, often compromising their own comfort and happiness to please someone they  care about.

  • Chicken's special Gift is becoming Dinner for someone who has a Real Guide that Kicks Your Guide's Ass.

Coyote teaches the ability to laugh at yourself.

Sometimes people take things too seriously.  Coyote teaches us not to be so serious all the time.  native american folk stories are full of stories such as How Coyote Learned To Fly and How Coyote Got Dumped On National Television.
Coyote is also a notorious lech, using any means necessary to satisfy his lust.  Folk stories also abound with this theme: many native american children remember being told stories such as How Coyote Sucked Himself, Coyote's Bet and Coyote Goes To The Free Clinic.

  • Coyote's special Gift is Most Sexually Transmitted Diseases.

crane Crane teaches the virtue of Patience.

Cranes can stand completely still in a pond for hours waiting for prey to pass by.  This is commonly believed to be attributed to Crane's amazing capacity for Patience.  The reality, though, is that Crane has a terrible short-term memory and the mental capacity of a goldfish.
  It stands in streams and ponds for hours at a time because it is constantly forgetting what it is looking for.  Cranes became endangered of extinction not because of hunting, as commonly believed, but rather from starvation.  They forget what is edible and what isn't.  If you can't remember what you had for dinner last night, or how to spell your own last name, chances are you could be a child of Crane.

  • Crane's special Gift is ...erm...what were we talking about again?

crow head Crow teaches the lesson of Observation.

Crows are ever vigilant, observing everything that goes on around them.  They are fascinated by the comings and goings of every other thing in their environment.  This is not due to a desire to learn, rather a desire for the acquisition of knowledge.  Crows are nature's worst gossips and cannot keep a secret to save their lives.
In greek mythology, Apollo had a crow for a messenger.  Back then, all crows were white as snow.  But the crow delighted in giving bad news, so much so that Apollo got fed up and turned the crow black as night.
Crows also love the sound of their own voice.  They can talk for hours and hours about what the neighbours were doing last night and who they saw who with at the supermarket last weekend.

  • Crow's special Gift is Pretending to Know Much More than you Actually Do And Telling Everyone All About It.

chicken of the sea Dolphin teaches the ability to thrive in an unfriendly environment.

Although it makes its home in the vast ocean, Dolphin, like Whale, is not a fish.  It bears live young and nurses, making it a mammal.  Most mammals would never make it in an environment so harsh and unforgiving, but Dolphin has no trouble adapting.  This is due mostly to the fact that it has legions of new age worshippers who act as its secret service and destroy any potential threats.

  • Dolphin's special Gift is Being Mistaken For Tuna.

dove Dove teaches the lesson of peace and forgiveness.

Doves have been the symbol of peace since time immemorial.  The main reason for this is that Dove is traditionally a feminine symbol and is very much in touch with its feminine side.  The reality of this is that Dove is Nature's worst fighter and is constantly getting its ass kicked by girls.  The only sports Dove was good at were Bowling, Ice Skating and Cheerleading.
Ancient folklore is rich with stories such as How Dove Was Picked Last for the Team, How Dove Never Had Any Friends, and How Dove Got Called A Faggot.

  • Dove's special Gift is Hiding in the Locker Room Till The Rest Of The Class Leaves.

Eagle teaches the lesson of power and independence.

Pride, strength, vision, independence and nobility are all traits ascribed to Eagle.  The Eagle is sacred to native Americans and is the symbol of the United States because of its pride and power.
Objectively, though, Eagle is bully which loves showing the rest of the animals how strong and fearless it is [remind you of any countries?]  The motivation behind this is that Eagle is a notorious crossdresser and can be seen on the docks late at night.

  • Eagle's special Gift is Beating the Crap out of That Faggot Dove Because You Can't Deal with the Fact that You Have a Crush on Him.

Goose teaches vigilance and protection.

Ask anyone who lives on a farm or out in the country what the best breed of dog to get for a watchdog and they will almost certainly tell you 'a goose'.  Geese have become notorious for their fearless defence of their home land, often chasing off animals such as dogs or other predators with their enormous size and formidable honking noise.

  • Goose's special Gift is Attacking People with Camcorders to Appear on America's Crappest Home Videos.

Hawk teaches Observation and Attention to Detail.

Hawk is able to spot prey such as a rabbit from up to two miles away.  It is this power of observation and attention to detail that makes Hawk such a formidable predator.  Its prey consists of small furry things and, often, other birds.  Hawk has a terrible dress sense, as evidenced by the terrible leather hoods he is often seen wearing...possibly to attract the attention of Eagle.

  • Hawk's special Gift is Cannibalism.

Horse teaches Travel and Freedom.

Horse has a relationship with humans that dates back to prehistoric times.  It was one of the first to be domesticated and put to use for man.  As a means of transportation, the horse served as an efficient and effective method for millennia.  This is due to many factors, including its sturdy frame, large size and steel-belted radial tyres.

  • Horse's special Gift is Serving A Lifetime of Slavery for An Ungrateful Master.

Lion teaches Leadership and the Male Principle.

Lion has been described as the king of the jungle for ages and ages.  This is due to the fact that lion has no natural predators, and lives at the top of the food chain.  What many do not realise is that it is the female, not the males, who do the hunting.  The males sleep an average of twenty hours a day while the females take care of the hunting and mind the young.  As a matter of fact, male lions are the most useless beings ever created.

  • Lion's special Gift is Bitch You'd Better Get Your Fat Ass Back in the Kitchen and Make Me Dinner And Get Me A Goddamned Beer While You're At It or I'll Smack Your Ass.

Magpie teaches Ingenuity and Resourcefulness.

Magpie is a masterful opportunist who often watches and waits for someone else to hunt prey and moves in on the kill.  Magpie is an unsurpassed scavenger who can survive in any environment using its keen wits.  Magpies are usually seen in downtown areas pushing shopping carts full of what it lovingly calls 'its Shinies'.

  • Magpie's special Gift is Finding Returnable Beer Bottles.

Mockingbird teaches Fitting In by Imitation.

Mockingbird is a master impersonator, able to mimic almost any sound it hears.  This ability is reflected in its latin Latin name, corvus rich little, meaning "annoying talentless hack".  Those who have Mockingbird as an ally are damned to a life of imitation, never being able to have an original thought or create anything meaningful themselves.  Mockingbird must therefore rely on the actions and opinions of others for self-definition.

  • Mockingbird's special Gift is Imitating Car Alarms.

Mouse teaches Humility and Attention to Detail.

Mouse is one of the smallest of all the animal kingdom, and because of this, often overlooked.  But remember the tale of the lion and the mouse...the mouse was the only one able to take the thorn out of the lion's paw.  It is its size and attention to detail that allowed Mouse to succeed when all others had failed.  It is also its size and attention to detail that keeps it distracted, thus making it the chief food source for all the other animals.

  • Mouse's special Gift is Breeding Like Roaches and Getting Eaten by Everyone.

Orca teaches Strength over Weakness.

Orca is the great predator of the sea. Orca is the killer whale and he, like Dolphin, hunts with a smile. He was one of the first animals and is sacred to the Haida people. His strength is in his family and this makes him snotty about people he doesn't know. Two orca pods can live not 20 miles from each other and yet use completely different dialects. He is reluctant to share what he knows, even with others of his own kind, unless they are family. This makes Orca children prone to forming cliques and little groups with their friends whom they consider to be the only ones worth talking to, and also makes them very insular. Another of Orca's tricks is to herd small, defenceless prey animals into somewhere from which it is impossible to escape, with the help of his pod mates, and then play with the prey. This notably happens with baby seals. This means that Orca children may often be found being cruel to people smaller and weaker than themselves.

  • Orca's special Gift is Being a Big Bully and Playing With Your Food.

Otter teaches playfulness and the ability to be at home in both worlds.

Lord Balgair, King Otter, was great hunter and feared for his nimble swiftness.  In  mythology, Otter was revered for his ability to move effortlessly both in and out of the water. In reality, Otter couldn't give a fuck about anything other than playing around, floating on his back in the water eating crabs whilst balancing stones on his belly and making baby otters.

  • Otter's Special Gift is Arsing Around and Collecting Unemployment Cheques.

Owl teaches Stealth and Mystery.

Owl has a long history in the occult and folklore.  This is due in part to Owl's unique appearance and its nocturnal tendencies.  Owl is an amazing hunter, being capable of totally silent flight.  This unique ability is totally wasted on the ignorant Owl, as it is totally unable to Keep its Damned Mouth Shut.  It loves to shriek out as it is chasing its prey, thus alerting dinner of the potential threat.

  • Owl's special Gift is Sneaking Up On Things While Shouting "Look Behind You."

Panther teaches inner strength and protection.

Panther calls to mind that most famous, Bagheera from The Jungle Book, protector of the Man Cub, Mowgli. Those who read the book, rather than relying on Disney's sugarcoated version, would better understand that Panther, while maternal and nurturing, is the Coyote of the cat world. She speaks with a California surfer accent, dude, and is so chill that they ain't nothing could harsh her mellow. She's too concerned with looking cool and staying out of direct sunlight...closer inspection of her trademark blacker-than-black coat reveals that she is really just a leopard with a bad dye job..."panthers" don't exist, they're just really dark leopards.

  • Panther's special Gift is Blending In With The Natives...Poorly.

Rabbit teaches fertility and self-preservation.

Rabbit is commonly associated with birth due to its tremendous fertility.  A baby rabbit is able to fend for itself within 28 days of its birth.  This is significant in that the cycle of the moon is also 28 days, suggesting a mystical connection to the moon.  The truth of the matter is that rabbits cannot actually count higher than 28.  Most of its head mass, usually reserved for brains, is taken up by its huge ears.  Because of these ears, it would be natural to assume that Rabbit has good hearing.  In fact, the opposite is true.  The massive ears are not used for hearing, as one would think, but rather to receive short-wave radio transmissions; Rabbit's chief means of communication.

  • Rabbit's special Gift is a Good-Tasting Stew.

Rat teaches adaptability and resourcefulness.

Rat has long been thought of as a pest; always popping up where uninvited and stealing food.  This is due in part to Rat's ability to survive on its wits in even the most hostile of environments; i.e. human cities.  Rat, like its close relative Cockroach, thrives on scraps and anything it can manage to scavenge.  Rat has become so accustomed to living on trash that not only has it become immune to most illnesses, but real food has long since become totally poisonous.  Any food eaten without even the slightest bit of mildew or parasites will send a rat into violent convulsions, ultimately ending in death.

  • Rat's special Gift is the Plague.

Raven teaches shapeshifting and magic.

Raven has long been thought of as one of the Creators.  The native Americans of the Pacific Northwest have many tales of how Raven created the world, how Raven invented fire and many others.  Raven is capable of all these things because of his tremendous intuition, which he never shares with anyone.  Those who follow Raven can expect to be put into many very difficult situations without a clue as to how to get out of them.  Raven children are capable of incredible magic, but are invariably unable to explain any of it, or even use it to their advantage.  Raven's children have the least control over their lives.

  • Raven's special Gift is Intuitively Knowing Totally Useless Crap About People You Don't Know.

Seal teaches deceptive fluidity.

In Scottish folklore, the silkie is a seal that turns into a young girl when it comes out of the water, and the seal is regarded as a magical animal for its ability to vanish with barely a ripple.  This is presumably because it is difficult to tell the difference between a sleeping seal colony and a bunch of plump young girls moonbathing on rocks when you've had one dram for the road too many and you are staggering home.
Seals are also killed indiscriminately by fishermen for eating salmon.  Seal children tend to hide at the first sign of danger, and then get distracted and forget what it was that had frightened them, and yet often fail to notice the man with the club sneaking up behind them. They also tend to be awkward and clumsy when not in their favoured environment.

  • Seal's special Gift is Getting the same diseases as dogs and Making a Lovely Fur Coat.

Snake teaches healing and sexuality.

Snake lorem ipsum yourmom

  • Snake's special Gift is Something or Other.

charlotte Spider teaches interconnectedness.

Spider blah blah blah cannibal blah blah blah web blah blah blah maguire blah.

  • Spider's special Gift is mummification.

Squirrel teaches foresight and the importance of preparedness.

Squirrel is a common sight in most city parks and tree-lined streets.  Usually, Squirrel is seen darting back and forth, ceaselessly running up and down trees, searching for and storing food.  This has long served as a good example for the foresight Squirrel has been linked with; storing food found in the plentiful months in anticipation of the lean winter months.  The reality couldn't be further from the truth.  Squirrel couldn't care less about keeping itself fed in the winter; its ceaseless search for food has nothing to do with food at all.  Squirrel is, in fact, a serious methamphetamine addict.  The constant buzzing between places is a result of the massive amount of chemicals Squirrel keeps in its system.  Squirrel is not hoarding food; it delusional with paranoia and is trying to hide it from all its perceived enemies.

  • Squirrel's special Gift is Always Having A Spotless House. Always.

stork Stork teaches birth and communication.

Stork is well-known in folklore for delivering new babies.  This is due in part to its tremendous dedication as a parent.  Storks often use the same nest every year, implying a sense of domestic stability.  Despite all these wonderful attributes, the downside to Stork is that it is completely mythological.  No-one has ever seen a real one.

  • Stork's special Gift is Ignorance of Scientific Fact.

special thanks to Sam, Pete and Realpeeps for the help.


gecko home raven ravenfamily foyer runes