The Wild Unknown Oracle of Snakes and Eggs:

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You folks all know, how much I LOVE Animals and that I have a predilection for Animal Oracles and Tarots. So I was very exited to receive the Wild Unknown Oracle as a Winter Solstice present. I do have and quite like its predecessor, the Wild unknown Tarot and even coloured most all cards as a meditative exercise that took me deeper into the “card soul” of the deck.

The WU Oracle – I do love the sturdy box and the silky card stock and do like most of the individual art work, feeling, that is gives justice to the Animal selected. But it is the selection of Animals itself, that soon after starting to use the deck for my daily 3 card draws, that I bumped up against.

My daily draw is:

1 – guardian of the day

2 – challenge/ obstacle

3 – advice/ outcome

I can not tell you how often I managed to draw the combination of Earthworm – Sea Serpent and Snake

and perplexedly starrrrred at the 3 swirrrrling circles of life before me…..

Or the combination of Crow – Black Egg – and cosmic Egg!??

Why are there soooo many eggs and Snakes with eggs?

Because sure enough, I see the Crow sitting on – an Egg and if it is not the Crow, then it is the Nightingale sitting on a Robin’s egg…….

OK, this is not, what it is supposed to be, according to the accompanying booklet and so to the deck creator…… that is just what I see….

So of course I did study the book.

And then I stumbled over the next hurdle – for me:

Many of the descriptions accompanying the Animals are not at all related to lore and myth but probably more the personal view of the deck creator. On the one hand, that is very interesting and lets me into her head, on the other hand I feel, that a user that is new to all the world wide lore and myth about the depicted animals is mission out a LOT!

For example the Hyena: (Yes, I painted mine!)do you know, that Hyenas live in a very strictly matrilineal society and that the strongest female, in an attempt to become the pack leader with mating and pub rearing privileges often has to fight her litter sisters to the death?

Would you want to know these things if the card comes up in a reading?

Did you know, that in India and Nepal Peacocks are seen as having an “all seeing eye” and are said to be able to transmute poison? Their feathers are used in cleansing rituals by shamans and also in some Buddhist rituals.

And in the book the Bear is the lowliest of the Earth mammals 😦 does the deck creator know, that circum-polar = from the Ainu in Japan all across Siberia to Finland, Norway, Sweden to the early tribes of England and of course here all over North America the Bear is a powerful healer and aid to the shaman who heals with herbs, son and ritual. Among my own Siberian ancestral tribe it is told that the Bear was a Sky Khan, a God. He agreed to come down to Earth to teach the Khams = Shamans how to heal the sick and then guard the eastern Door against Albis and other disease spirits. Here in North America the Bear is a healer everywhere.

In our Mohawk Longhouse the Sachem always tells us the beautiful story of how the Bear changed into an ooooold man and came into the home of the Bear Clan matriarch to teach her how to heal all kinds of diseases and what herbs to use when and where…..

There would be many many similar stories to tell, that often would contradict the promptings given in the book.

Many others I am now tasked to discover for myself. Zebra and Stingray for example were not Critters, that I was previously familiar with – when it comes to lore and legend.

Zebra of course has a coat that totally camouflages it against its background, because the big Cats Cheetah, Lion and Panther see only in black and white and so the Zebra has no clear contours……

Interesting, eh?

Well, this is just me, putting a couple of Fire Ants underneath your bud, to go deeper and find out about the true Medicine of the depicted Animals.

The Cradle of the Wind is rocking

Another day another heat-wave, another migraine….

Until the meds work and I can actually see with both my eyes (instead of having “double vision), I may as well sit here and write about my card of the day.

Ace of Coins – Tarot of the Trance again.

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Crazy image – very befitting how I feel and what is going on in my life: I recognise roots! Rootedness – for – probably the Apple Tree. Apples speak to me of harvest, of a time of plenty and yes, plenty is happening here right now. The Orobora is eating her own tail.

Like me, like both of us. At this time of the year we are both racing around in ever tightening circles eating ourselves up while giving birth to our art and our 5 cents of wisdom, which in my case is greedily swallowed up by my clients and sometimes even used constructively, so their Apples can grow and ripen as well.

The hectic 2 sided face in the centre should remind me of a prominent figure in mythology, but with the migraine, the archetype does not come into the forefront of my mind. Instead I see myself here – the annoying double visions, me swinging my poor head hectically this way and that to keep an eye on all the swirrrrrling action around me….. The blue wings speak to me of wind. Storm to be precise and to “almost take off, but not quite” But taking off works fully against the roots, that keep me grounded!

2 of my Miahanits are Birds. A decade or 2 ago when I went on a shamanic trance journey to ask for helpand advice with the stress during the hectic summer month one of them told me, that during the summer months I must live “in the Cradle of the Wind”

This is the image of the “Cradle of the Wind” for today!

Action to be taken today:

Hold on to your Roots = stay grounded.

Eat an Apple or 2 –

Oh yes, make some children’s bracelet using up those tiny Apple beads I got from the art store!

DDU for July 25:

Daily Disaster Update – DDU for short:

1 – woke up with a nasty migraine – no wonder, after this crazzzy weekend with 2 craft shows in the stifling heat

2 – migraine meds are starting to kick in – I can see the keyboard! 🙂

3 – the phone is dead –

4 – Phone technician NO 18 is supposed to show up sometime today – to find out, what the last 17 technicians also found out – the line to Fraserburg needs repairing – it is full of water, rusted out and was hit by lightning. Canada’s  Bell Telephone however will just NOT repair it, since it costs upwards of $ 65 000 ….. as of last year’s estimate, which by now probably is at $ 75 000, not counting the time and expenses for the – so far – 18 technicians…….

5 – the car is dead. – just like yesterday after the craft show, when we wanted to pack up to get home.. A shorted out circuit drains battery

Peter re-charged the battery and disconnected it – until we can drive the car to the shop, in order to exchange it for the OTHER one, our ooooold show van, that is there now, to be fixed…..

6 – Card of the day:

Tarot of the Trance:

Tarot of the Trance 3 of Swords

Three of Swords!

2 red beasts are screaming at each other gnashing their teeth in anger and frustration. With the arrows attached to their tails they stabbed a helpless green Fish, that is bleeding out beneath them. Arrows from the waters below stab the Fish as well – in reverberation of the situation.

The cross on the hilt of the Sword  in the middle however speaks of cross-roads and choice.

The Flowers in the border speak of summer – our time of stressss, shows, hectic, difficulties coping with all of it coming over us at once without reprieve. 

How very appropriate!

Pain and heartaches of all sorts, stresssss and no time to take care of the things we need to do, like make jewellery and phone clients, never mind time for relaxing and regrouping,

Actions to be taken:

Safe the Fish!!!!

It represents us, out creative flow and Energy, pierced and immobilized by all the external calamities!

Instead of rushing around to try and fix phone lines, and none working cell phones and defunct cars, sit down to meditate and tune out all the humdrum – it still will be there humdrumming this afternoon, when we are in better shape to deal with it.

Relax and decompress by writing out your frustrations in a blog post.

Done! – and feeling better! 🙂

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During our very hectic summer months I like to do my daily draws with the Tarot of the Trance, because its crazzzzy colours and bizarre images very much fit and express the weird, bizarre and hectic 2 months in our life, when our business – Bearpaw Jewellery, clashes with my shamanic practice, both fighting for my precious time. In the images I see reflected the heat and humidity, that bursts forward growth in Nature and all the crazzzzy problems my “summer clients” present to me in the hope of a “magical fix” 

It also points out in vibrant colours, how badly I myself need one of these so very elusive magical fixes!

 

Mountain Lion Medicine = Card17

mountain-lionTo the card description in the Medicine Card Book I would like to ad, that for the Zuni People the Cougar/ Mountain Lion is “Elder Brother Mountain Lion”and stands as the Medicine Guardian of the North direction.
He is seen as the Master Hunter, that teaches hunting skills like stealth and patience to the young men. When in camp however, these young men are to emulate strength, patience with the young and weak as well as grace and courtesy in their dealings with the woman folk.
Cougar/ Catamount also teaches about holding territory and respecting territorial boundaries – of self and others.

Mountain Lion petroglyph Petrified Forest National Park AZ

Mountain Lion petroglyph Petrified Forest National Park AZ

 

When portrayed as a fetish by Zuni – and now in modern times also other stone carvers – Mountain Lion is adorned with a piece of White Mussel Shell – for North, Red Coral -for life Blood and black Jet – as the sum of all colours. Often also a piece of Turquoise for healing or a Turquoise arrow is added. Truly old fetishes can be recognized by the tail being bent backwards over the back of the Mountain Lion.

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turquoise Mtlon fetish
Such a fetish would be kept together with others on or in a fetish jar. On a regular basis food and medicine gift would be fed to the fetishes ( = Tobacco, Cornmeal, Turquoise for example)

Edna-Leki-Zuni-Fetish-Pot

 

.rom the web:For the Zunis of Turtle Island
the Cougar was the Master Hunter, known for its high
intelligence, its knowledge of other animal and life forms,
its physical prowess, its strength of will, and its intuitive
ability. The Cougar sees the maintenance of its territory as
essential for its survival. Poshaiankia, the father of the
Medicine Societies, designated the Cougar the duty of
carrying messages from humans to the higher spirits,
because of this animal’s personal power, superior knowledge,
strength of will, and steadfastness. Therefore, the Cougar
represents the link between ourselves and the most powerful
spirits in Zuni Mythology: Mother Earth, Father Sky, and the
Originator of All.

 

I had several short encounters with Mountain Lions – or Cougars, how we call them here:

The first was way back in the summer of 1981 on a back country hiking trail in Brice Canon, Utah. My then travelling partner Didi and I had made camp in this enchanting landscape, pitched our tent beneath a long dead gnarled Cedar Tree. To make sure our food was safe from Bears, after supper we put it all into my backpack and hoisted that one via a rope up high into one of the last few branch stumps of this dead Tree. (-stupid!! I know – now! )

Douse camp fire and off into our sleeping bags.

In the middle of the night we heard strange sounds right above us, scratching and some weird pitched growling…. Someone was at our food bag! Out of the tent and in the beam of the flash light we saw, what it was:

A young cougar!

Panic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

That one, seeing us, promptly lost its purchase on the backpack and – fell right into our tent.

More Panic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Grrrrouwwwwwhrr!! Ripping the collapsed tent to shreds the Cat knew nothing better than climb back up the Tree!

We scrambled out of the immediate area of the tent and with our backs to a smooth rock wall spend the rest of the night shivering in fear and cold. We heard the Cougar scratching around on the Tree, but the beam of the flash light did not carry as far…. until it died on us….. Was the Cougar gone? Or was it sneaking up on us?

Finalllllly dawn came – and no Cat!

Just a ripped Tent and a ripped backpack.

This one I "hunted" on gooogle pics and asked him to sit here and be nice!

This one I “hunted” on gooogle pics and asked him to sit here and be nice!

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The second encounter happened here at home:

It was a efw years ago, not suite sure when, my ooooold poooooter died (– isn’t that always the case?)

Anyway, it was just after midnight when I went downstairs and out the sliding door of the jewellery workshop to replenish our Raccoon dinner dish with the nightly ration of Cat kibbles.

Then, after my evening shower 15 minutes later I thought, I just take a little looook, if maybe some of our Raccoons already had arrived and was at the food.

Some of these guys were shy, wild ones, not from the litter of orphans that we raised and released the year before. So I was very quiet and did not turn on the light.

The moon illuminated the deck

and there was something – someone – but not a Raccoon!

A HUUUUUUUUGE slim slick Cougar was crouched before the dish, stretched out , munching away, looooong tail stretched out behind, its tip swushing back and forth nervously.

As quickly and quietly as possible I ran upstairs for my camera – and to call Peter, who was already asleep.

But –

Never wake a sleeping man!

Grumbling he poltered down the stairs and, hearing the noise, with an elegant jump our elusive dinner guest was gone!

What a missed opportunity.

– For years and years we locals of Muskoka have been telling each other stories of the Cougars we saw, the ones that ate our dogs, the prints we encountered. But the MNR insists, that there were no Cougars in Muskoka, just large Tabby Cats and the odd Bobcat….

Well, since this encounter the MNR had to give in finalllly and admit to Muskoka having yet another “dangerous vermin”, The Eastern Cougar – Catamount.

Then, after yet another Cougar chased a dog in broad daylight in the suburbs and numerous clear pictures were taken and no travelling zoo or circus had accidentally lost one, this had to be a wild Cat.

Sadly they did, what in these cases they always do: Kill it 😦

You could gooogle “Muskoka Cougar” and read more)

Susan Seddon Boulet

Susan Seddon Boulet

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Ok, comming to my cougar encounter No 3.

This one I posted under Notes on my FB account, date and all:

A cougar at the house!

Saturday morning (April 1st 2011)

With a warm blanket,some dry crackers and my camomile tea I hunkered down on the upper deck. There had been a strange ruckus going on outside all day.

3 Crows and our pair of nesting Ravens were flying to and fro and cawing and crowing practically none stop. Just about 30 meters to the East of the house they were up in the Pines and something was making them Very upset!

And then I heard it!

GRRRRRRUOAUUUUHRRRRRRRRRRRRR  CHchchsss!!!!!!!

RRRRRRROUOOOOORRRRRRchchchssssGGGRRRRRROU

CHCHCHRRRRRRRRRROOUUUUUHHCCCCCCHCHCHrrrrrrr…….

There is only one thing, that makes sounds like this:

A mad Cougar!

30 meters away in the bush!

I waited and listened and had the camera at the ready….

But just the Ravens and Crows submitted to a photo op…..

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I saw him/ her the very next morning:

Right after waking up I stumble out onto the deck to hang up the 2 freshly filled Bird feeders onto the lines.(- I have to take them in at night because of the Bears and the Raccoons…)

And that is when I heard loud scratching sounds and cracking of branches and saw him/her come down head over long tail coming down the tall Pine Tree East of the house. Probably he/ she was startled by the noise from the sliding door or clumsy little me.

The last part she jumped to the ground and then away into the bush….

A HUUUUUGE animal! Even bigger with the long tail! The tip of the tail was turned up…

Yesterday evening the Coons did not come as usual. And then, late, almost midnight, 3 adults came. They were nervous, quickly munched some cat food and then were of…. Normally all 6 of them hang around on the deck…..

I wonder if the Cougar sticks around in hope of a Raccoon meal?

These encounters , all commung out of the blue, have prompted me to always asociate Cougar/ Mountain Lion with a sudden surprise encounter wth a formidable individual of power and maybe also danger.

Someone to be reconed with, someone who needs a lot of personal space, someone who is fierce and passionate.

Another association I never forgot is, what my Inde’ teacher once told me: Cougar is an Animal of March! Of the change from winter into Spring….

Prairie Dog Medicine = Card 47

Prairie Dog
Waaay back in 1980/81 when I was staying with my Lakota friends on Pine Ridge I had ample opportunity to observe Prairie Dogs in the wild.
Their colonies were everywhere. My Native friends called them Chatter boxes, because of their frequent vocalisations. Usually there is one of them perched on a vantage point, keeping watch. – This camp guard announces the arrival of any Fox, Hawk or other predator with a specific loud warning whistle.
So the other Prairie Dogs could go forage, groom their young and play or squabble in the sun. They were a noisy busy gregarious bunch, but One loud whistle from the guard and all would squeal and scurry back into the safety of their burrow.
They were sort of diurnal: out and about in the morning and afternoon, but not so much during the hot time of day.
Their burrow is grazed bare for several meters around its entrances and below ground it is a maze of tunnels, in which several families live.
But they are only the landlords – they have tenants: Ferrets, Burrowing owls, Rattle Snakes, and wasps, which had a hive under ground
I would not want to be the landlord of this bunch and keep all these characters in line….
The ranchers are not very fond of Prairie Dogs, because many a Bison – and nowadays a Cow or a Horse stumbled into a Prairie Dog burrow/ hole and broke a foot and so was lost – or they stumbled and twisted an ankle and went lame.
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From my observations of these charismatic Animals come my personal interpretations of Prairie Dog Medicine and so the Prairie Dog card:
Community living
in a noisy busy neighbourhood
nervous energy, watchfulness
lots of physical contact = hugging and “kissing” touch and fussing over others
sharing a home and also responsibilities
following rules
builder of homes for others but also having difficult neighbours to deal with
having, needing a bodyguard to watch over them
Vigilance and sacrifice,
delayed gratification, since the guard does not get to feed, groom or play right then and there, but will be relieved later
Depleting one’s environment and maybe also one’s energy – maybe to the point of having to leave = move
having certain specific times of action and a rest/siesta during the day
hibernating = dreaming and learning in/ through dreams
storing healing herbs and grasses in a safe larder for times of need
building an accidental trap for others, inadvertently causing accidents.
I also find interesting, that Prairie Dogs do not drink water – other than morning dew. They get all their moisture from the grasses they consume. Often this lead me to ask the client, iffff he is AL Anon and or has to abstain and most often the answer is yes!
With these characteristics in mind I word my reading, ask specific questions of my querant and often one, the other or several of these pointers are vital to the reading and help my qureant to make appropriate choices.
Now, again, I realize, that these Medicines are in part quite different from what Jamie wrote in her book…..

 

Raccoon Medicine:

Raccoon:

MC-Raccoon
Well, I really do not know, from where Jamie received the information, that she shared in the book, that accompanies the deck.
It can not be from the Seneca – or any other of the 6 Nations as you can see in the images.
Any Raccoons I have ever known – and we work in/ with an orphan Raccoon raise and release program – have been forever squabbbbbeling growling hissing and biting at/ with each other over food, places to sleep and also displayed all the signs of dominance versus submissive behaviour with the large males taking and vigorously defending the best feeding and sleeping places and also chasing away the females which whom they mated and their own as well as other offspring.
If we put out 4 feeding dishes, the dominant males will try to claim defend them all……..

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However, what in all the 25 years we worked with Raccoons, wild ones, sick ones, healthy ones, hand raised ones and migrants and observed is their phenomenal hand dexterity. Their hands have a multitude more sensory receptors than human hands and so through their hands the Raccoon experiences the world in a much more profound level than a human. Often Raccoons do not even look at an object, they just “handle it between their front paws and receive all the detailed information they need to make very informed and also smart choices.
They rely on touch more ton anything else to make a living.
They also have extraordinary strengths in their fore arms, needed to quickly shimmy a quite corpulent body (just before hibernation time) up a limbless Tree trunk. They also need this upper body strengths to go back down the Tree head first.
Raccoons also have a very delightful language that of feeeeps and squeaks, rumbles and other specific sounds, that over the years my husband and me learned. Not only can we so communicate with the frightened orphans we raise, but also with wild Raccoons or Raccoons in other places than our home.
But their communication is not only through sound:
They have a VERY expressive body language: For example, shaking your back and bud while putting the head on an angle is an invitation to rough-house and play=wrestle.

Is the head angled to the other side, is it rather a semi playful challenge between siblings.
A loud relaxing sigh then will signal the end of play-time and everyone will settle down right away.
Any wild Raccoon will react if I intone and or mimic these sounds and body postures and react accordingly, realizing, that I am none threatening and with the right fiep sounds immitated by me, will not run away.

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So, if in one of my readings the Raccoon card shows up I will mention communication skills, verbal and none verbal, the joy to learn the language of another species -> person, things lost in translation, things un-clear and so on…
And of course everything that has to do with hands!
Dexterity -> artistry, talent, skill for crafts or in the trades excelling at tasks that involves using your hands like fixing things – yes, and sadly also breaking things….
TOUCH -> sensitivity in the hands used for exploration but also for laying on of hands, for massage and other hand oriented healing arts.
What do you feel? With your hands, while closing you eyes – and your mouth?
I will also address curiosity and sticking your hand into almost anything – which may be good – or maybe not so = negatively aspected.
What I also will take into account is Raccoon’s endless curiosity.
They do not like secrets and things that they do not know and will try patiently and with all their dexterity to open boxes, bottles bags and anything with something inside it, that moves or rattles or makes a sound. When we plant our small garden in the spring our Raccoons will usually dig EVERYTHING BACK UP in the hope to find what we put into the earth, what is beneath it and then mess up all the seedlings. Is there a high fence around the garden? More fun for them. So our garden is a wire mesh cage with a full wire mesh top – just another playground for them – and a sleeping spot on hot July nights when they get ventilation from beneath them.
Raccoons go into semi hibernation, end October we see the last of them.

Their BIG ENEMY is the Fisher, an Animal larger than a Marten and smaller than a Wolverine.

Sadly every winter we loose animals to this nemesis of Coons, Porcupines, Cats and small Dogs.
Well, everyone knows Raccoons love water, so I will just mention that here.
Young Coons zeeeeeter endlessly if they are not quite happy. This may in the wild alert a predator.
Like: Is the client complaining very much?? (princess on a pea syndrome??)
Attracting unwanted attention?

the coons are here

Owl on the head:

 

Roots of Asia Tarot:

8 of Swords

8 of Swords

The next 3 Swords cards, the 8, 9 and 10 look “very RWSy” to me.

RWSy!?? Is that a word?

Well, it is now – and you read it here first – maybe……;)

The 8 of Swords shows us a person, sitting in full lotus shielding his/ her eyes so as not to see. The person is surrounded by swords. An Owl is perched on his/ her head.

In the LWB we are confronted with 8 of the vices and pitfalls that every practitioner of Buddhism has to struggle, guard against and ultimately overcome: When I translate my German copy, I have:

1 -Being caught in the body – meaning being caught in everything ordinary, mundane, including sexuality, lust, needs of all kind and creature comfort.

2 – Being in company of negative influences – that includes about everything we with our “Western sensibilities” would assume it does, but ultimately also the problem of being away from the Shanga, the community of Buddhist practitioners on the same path…..

3 -Wasting of time and energy – includes following any and all notions and needs of the body and the ego and anything, that keeps us from following the Dharma, from meditating and concentrating on our spiritual advancement.

4 – It also means indulging in things like gossip, or idle talk, kind words that are not necessary to be spoken, kind words, that make oneself feel good when saying them, kind advice that was not asked for and or is not in line with advance in the Dharma,

Simple silly fun is also frowned upon: just as frowned upon are games and games of chance …..There is no such thing as chance, all is grounded in cause and effect…..!!

So, basically, what I am doing here is also frowned upon, (- but I will not let that bother me…)

5 – Further one should not have or cultivate unsuitable friends = ones that are NOT members of the Shanga

6 – nor should one ever be lazy!!!!

7 – …or excessively sexual!

8 – But lastly one also should not become an obsessive ascetic! One should follow the golden middle.

One should not strive to be the most devout or most knowledgeable in the Shanga – community of Buddhist disciples or meditate to excess…..

 

So, as I see it, all these “DO NOT orders” have the practitioner here in this image badly frazzzzeled!

I feel for him/ her.

But Of course, you all know me and so know, that I am immediately focusing on the Owl on his/ her head.

Buddhism like Siberian shamanism sees the Owl as a bringer of esoteric wisdom. Help in “seeing through things,” through the darkness and fear and confusion.

So, to me she says, calm down, do not give up, even ifff it all is a bit much!

The 8 swords in the background I see as forming a protective half circle around the person. They have his/ her back so nothing can come from there!Seeking refuge in meditation here is a safe place. One also will learn quite a bit – also quite a few hard lessons…..

This image feels very familiar to me:

I can not tell you how often I went on a trance journey and felt Lira, my Miahanit, sitting right on top of my head, digging her claws into my scalp and so somehow steadying me and helping me stay “on point”.

Then, when I come out of trance, I often put my hands in front of my eyes just like this, still seeing the flimmering Otherworld, but already hearing and feeling my tonal surroundings.

Then, rubbing my eyes helps me to re-focus them and see through the receding visions back into the every day World around me…..