The first time I ever saw a hummingbird was when I visited Big Sur. It was 1995 and I hadn't yet moved to California. As I sat on the patio of Ventana Inn sipping a glass of wine, gazing out over the treetops to the rolling azure waves of the Pacific below, a tiny iridescent bird sparkled and fluttered its way around the branches. Growing up in Florida, I'd never seen hummingbirds, so I became awestruck at this beautiful little bird, the sweetness of its song and the way it hovered right in front of me, then quickly disappeared. I felt I was getting a glimpse into a magical fairy world!
After moving to California a couple years after that visit, Hummingbirds have made appearances in my life at very special times. When my grandmother passed away, I sat in my garden and asked for a sign that she was okay and peaceful. Literally 10 seconds after my request a hummingbird flew down in front of me, hovered directly over my head and jetted off over the rooftop. I later learned that the hummingbird is one of my animal totems. It visits me often to remind me of its loving wisdom.
"Hummingbird disdains ugliness or harshness and quickly flies away from discord or disharmony. If you have Hummingbird medicine, get ready to laugh musically and enjoy Creator’s many gifts. Drop your judgmental attitude and relax. Hummingbird will no doubt give you a flash of the spirit, darting here, there and everywhere. Hummingbird hears celestial music and is in harmony with it and you must learn to dance to it’s beautiful song."
Totem animals are with you for life, both in the physical and spiritual world. In many indigenous tribes, it is the tradition that 9 totem animals choose us at birth through Divine Guidance of a shaman. We may identify with and be visited by many animal guides throughout our lifetime, but your totem animals act as the main guardian spirits to support you through life's adventures.
Totem animals offer power and wisdom to us when we cultivate a relationship with them. It may not necessarily mean that we have a physical interaction with these animals, but rather acknowledging their presence in our lives through dreams, visions, and all the other ways they might appear to us.
In our modern world, we don't usually have a shaman present in the delivery room performing an animal totem ceremony as our children are born ( but how cool would THAT be?). For some of us, we innately know what our totem animals are because we're inexplicably drawn to the animal or have a special connection to the animal’s energy. Although, if you're like me that would include all animals, except maybe frogs, which kind of creep me out.
Here are some questions to ask yourself if you’re wondering what your animal totem is:
One thing to remember is that you cannot choose your totem spirit, rather it chooses or has already chosen you. The Spirit chooses you and they decide to whom they will reveal themselves. Much of the process of identifying your spirit animal is paying attention to both your past and your present. It is a process of developing your inner knowledge and spiritual understanding.
Download the pdf below to read about the wisdom that each animal represents: