Thinking about our connection with animals, let’s focus on the difference between connecting with animal species versus connecting with individuals. How do we do that? I think there are two ways.

Species connections

Most times, connection to species means people discover their Totem Animals – What is My Spirit Animal gives a great explanation of Totem Animals. There’s a long tradition in many cultures of symbolic meanings for animal species. It’s based on the characteristics of the animal. My favorite book on the symbolic meanings of animals is Animal Speak by Ted Andrews.

Or the animals’ meaning might be based on their role in  creation stories.  Check out Creation Stories from around the World!

In finding the species connection, people look for animals they’re drawn to – or those that show up in a way that you just can’t ignore – to see what the animal’s meaning might have for their lives. I remember when a fox crossed in front of me three times while walking in my neighborhood years ago. When I got back to the house, I pulled out Animal Speak to see what message I was receiving.

Many people shared stories with me of cardinals showing up on a significant date. They realize they’re getting a “hello” from a loved one who has passed. It’s different from an Animal Totem, but it’s a lovely connection.

I believe this is a gift from Spirit. We’re not connecting with the individual animal. It’s more like Spirit has asked the animal to deliver a message to us in this way.

Individual connections

When I think of connecting with individual animals, I think of animal communication. Instead of a symbolic connection/meaning, we connect telepathically with the animal itself.  Separate beings – separate personalities – share information about their lives with us.

For instance, we might ask how they’re feeling, physically or emotionally and we might hear words in response. They might show us (a visual in our mind) what caused their anxiety. Or tell us how they feel about someone else in the family. We might share how much we love them with words and emotions.

Molly DeckerIt’s fun to connect to animals we meet every day. Lately, I’ve talked to the neighborhood squirrels using thoughts, pictures and telepathy – animal communication.

I suggest that they move out of sight of Molly, my rambunctious pup. It works much better than standing still like a statue, I explain. If Molly doesn’t see them, she’ll move on to the next exciting thing much quicker. They’re figuring it out.

If you haven’t read about my encounter with a kangaroo in Australia yet, please click here – it’s a hoot!

Want to connect with your animal?

Learn more!

Have you found the symbolic meaning of an animal totem useful? Or has an animal brought you a reminder of love from someone who passed on? I’d love to hear about it!