In several of my previous post I have mentioned or spoke about Animal and Spirit Guides, so I thought that is was about time that I discussed my interpretation of these guides.
Animal and Spirit Guides cover an extremely large amount of material, and I am only going to be able scratch the surface of the subject in this post, but hopefully it will give you the basics.
Animal and Spirit Guides are Within
The first thing to say is both Animal and Spirit Guides are not external or outer influences, both are in fact aspects of your own essence. Many believe that these guides are outer influences from The Source, Great Spirit or The Universe; they are in as much as they are potential external influences that highlight these guides. However the guides themselves are actually an element of your Higher Self, your own Consciousness or your own essence. After all we already know everything that we need to know but sometimes we just need reminders.
Many believe that because Animal Guides and to a lesser extent Spirit Guides are seen, felt or experienced as an external influences, for example you unexpectantly see a badger and feel that Badger has come to you as an Animal Guide, you could be forgiven for believing that the Animal Guide, Badger, is an external influence or guide. The external influence is only to high light the essence of Badger that is within yourself. This may seem to be a little confusing but ultimately the guides are within.
How Do I Know My Guides?
Your guides can ‘appear’ to you in many forms and ways. Depending upon your beliefs these guides can be of various types and offer guidance in many ways. I’m not going to go into the details of the various types of Animal and Spirit Guides and the specific ways that they give help and guidance, as this in itself is a massive area for discussion.
The first thing to say about knowing your guides is to say that in pretty much all traditions and belief systems your guides pick you and not the other way round. They represent essences of yourself that can offer you help and guidance at either specific times in your life or for the whole of your life.
Part of being able to find your guides is being open and aware enough to be able to sense their presence or calling. There is often an element of intuition, a gut feeling as to what or who are your guides, in some traditions it is an elder, mentor or spiritual leader that is themselves guided as to what or who are your guides.
Also guides are not necessarily from the same origin as yourself, for example you may have Badger come to you as a guide and you may have been born and live in a country that has never seen badger as a native animal.
Your guides can come to you in many, many forms. From physical appearances, as in the example above, you seeing a badger and get a feeling that the essence of Badger is here to guide you, to images that repeat in dreams, books, patterns or in meditation. Or they may first appear in any combination of different forms, most often your guides will continue to present themselves to you until you acknowledge them or the time of their guidance has past. This is why until we are sufficiently aware that we often will see these guides in a number of different and unrelated sites.
Seeing our guides in a number of unrelated places is the most common way that we first meet with our guides. For example you may be out walking and see a badger, later that day you open a book and the page you opened it at had a picture of a badger on it. The following morning you hear badgers mentioned on the radio. Badger IS trying to get your attention. The essence of Badger within you is coming to the fore to offer you guidance, and badgers will keep appearing to you, as I say until you either acknowledge Badger or the time of the guidance passes. Badger in this example is coming to you as a guide.
Acknowledging Your Guides
Each tradition acknowledges their guides in their own way depending on the type of guide and various other criteria, I believe that it is a purely person thing the way you acknowledge and approach your guide.
Possible ways of acknowledging and approaching your guide could include one of several of the following, trance work, meditation, cards such as Tarot or Medicine Cards, even research into your guide can be acknowledging and communicating with your guide. Once you start to communicate with your guide, in which ever form best suites you, then you will start to understand the guidance they can offer.
Are My Guides With Me for Ever?
That really does depend on the type of guide, some are with us for the whole of lives, and we can communicate with these guides in whatever form we use at times when we need their help or guidance. Others are only transitory and fade into the background as we follow their guidance and move on.
What Can Our Guides Be?
Our guides can be literally anything, plant, tree, animal, bird, insect, spirits, Angels, deities, even the essence of the dead, or they may have no physical appearance. There is no limit to the form that your guides can take.
So There You Have It!
This is a short summary of Animal and Spirit Guides as I see them, from what I have learnt and what I understand. I have purposefully avoiding talking about any tradition and belief system as Animal and Spirit Guides cover all traditions and beliefs.
I know that the above may sound very surreal to some but I believe that connecting with your guides is a purely personal experience, something that once experienced you’ll understand fully.
Image courtesy of Sometimesong