Working with Spirit Animal Guides
First published by Moon Books, 2017
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Text copyright: Rachel Patterson soio
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CO NTE NTS
who am I?
My Animal Magng
what'sWith all the Ditferent Names?
what isAnirnal Magg
Meditations and Spells to Find Familiais and Animal Sm
what Does it Mean?
Animal Spell Working
Animal Divination, Omens and Superstitions
Animal parts in Magic
Animal Magic in Ritual
Animal Magic from Air, Water and Earth
Who am I?
I am a witch...havebeen for a very long time, not the green
skinned warty kind obviously...the real sort, but I am also a work
ing wife and mother who has also been lucky enough to write
and have published a book or (en. I love to learn, I love to study
and have done so from books, online resources, schools and
wonderful mentors over the years and still continue to learn each
and every day, but have learnt the most from actually getting out
sideand doing it.
I am High Priestess oflhe Kitchen Witch Coven and an Elder
at the online kitchen Witch School of Natural Witchcraft.
My craft is a combination of old religion witchcratt, kitchen
wltchely, hedge witchery and folk magic, My heart is that of a
kitchen Witch. I blessed with a wonderful husband, lovely
children, a fabulous family and good friends.
I like to laugh,..and eat cake...
Pagan Poaals Kitchen Witchcraft
CIimoi/e ofa kitchen Witch
Pagan Poaals l—laadao Folk Magic
Pagan Portals Maan Magic
A kitchen Witch ’5 World afll/lagical Plants it Herbs
A kitchcn Witch ’5 World anagical Foods
Pagan Portals Meditation
The Art afRitual
Arc afthc Goddess (cowritten with Tracey Roberts)
Pagan Portals The Caillcach
My website: wwwrachelpattersoncouk
My personal blog: wwwiansyﬁLdlagmggpomouk
My Animal Magicjnumey
I love animals of all shapes and sizes and grew up in a house
that always had a dog and various other pets along the way from
rabbits and guinea pigs to budgerigars. Then at the age of i7 I
left home to live on a farm, not iust any farm, but a pig farm full
of Hampshire saddleback pigs (the black ones with a pink stripe
around the middle), i absolutely loved my time on the farm and
felt a real connection to the pigs, which should have been a sign
really because tast torward some years later and while working
through a masculine energy meditation I met my lifelong animal
guide he is a wlld boar and he has been With me ever since.
Over theyears l have picked up a few more lifelong guides in the
form oia magpie, a seagull and a pigeon (bit ofa bird theme).
Also, while birthing my own wild stag skin shamanic drum, my
drumming animal guide came to me in the form oia trog, so I
have a bit ofarl animal farm going on, but each one is there for a
reason and each one brings diiterent strengths and wisdom to
Wild boar provides me with warrior spirit and courage and is
also the animal that kicks my butt itl need it whereas seagull will
appear when I am dealing With emotional issues and magpie
comes in when magic is afoot. Pigeon, on the other hand, brings
in a reminder that we need a bit of peace and quiet at times.
There are other animals or course, the ones that pop in and
out from time to time and those that appear for a short while
With particular messages or energies that are needed, but each
one appears for a reason and it is only by paying attention that
you learn from them; once you do that you will always have a
connection to the animal world and it will be very rewarding.
My outlook on working with animal magic or any area or the
Craft, actually even with lire itselr really, is to do what works ror
you, Trust your intuition and go with your instinct, ifit feels right
go with it but if it feels hinky then don't do it. And just because
someone else does it one way or tells you how to do something
it doesn’t necessarily make it right (or you, We all walk very
individual and personal pathways and what works ror one
doesn't always work for another. Trust your intuition because it
Will never let you down.
What’s With all the Diﬁﬁrent Names?
There are many dirrerent names (or animal guides and it depends
on what tradition or pathway you follow and a lot orthem seem
to be interchangeable.
Totem appears to be one of the more commonly used terms
although it is often associated with NativeAmerican and Aborigs
inal tribes, then there is animal spirit guide, messenger, come
panion, kindred animal, counsellor, retch, medicine, ally and
poweranimal to name but a rew.
interestingly enough when I looked up the word ‘lolem’ in a
dictionary to ﬁnd the original meaning, I read: ‘A totem is a spirit
being, sacred object or symbol that serves as an emblem afa group
of people such as a favnily, clan, lineage ar tribe: So actually it
seems that in modern paganism we have completely misapplos
priated the term to mean ‘power animal’ or ‘guide’,
Spirit guide seems to be the term used mostly in shamanic
practices and that makes sense to me because the animal guides
are met while journeying in thespirit realm/0thenworld. But a lot
or cultures believe that animals have a spirit and the term has
been used all over the world.
Messengers and counsellors are general terms applied to
those animals that pop in and literally give messages or deliver
retch is an lrish rolklore term that means a spirit guide that
can be in the rorm ora person or an animal. There are varying
beliefs about the fetch. Some say that it is the true spirit ola per
son and appears in three rorms; the (etch beast, which equates to
our ideas ora totem animal; the retch wyr, a contrarsexual spirit
orthe person whom it guldes; and the (etch god, which is the die
vine face orour own fetch. The retch in this case would be your
true or lirelong familiar/totem.
retch can also mean a spirit doppelganger that takes on the
appearance or someone who has iust died or is about to die. it
isn’t actually the ghost ofa person, but an imitation of someone
who is still alive, although rolklore states that seeing a retch is a
sign thatthe person it portrays is about to die.
similarly the word tylgia is from the Norse tradition and
means the same as a retch
a spirit (person or animal) who
accompanies a person in connection to their rate or fortune, A
Norse vitki (sorcerer) would not only draw power rrom his rylgia,
but could also proiect his conscious will into it in order for it to
carry out magical workings, The rylgia brought huge responsis
bilities and power, but could also throw hardships and chal
lenges into the ﬂux too. The rylgia would mould itselrto the per
sonality or the person it was attached to and the wellbeing orthe
human would depend on the wellbeing or the animal rylgia.
Many Norse believed that the rylgja was in fact part orthe hugr,
or soul, and that it was capable of leaving the body and pros
Animal medicine is another Native American term that de
scribes the power and spirit the animal carries Within. Just as you
would work With plant medicine for magical purposes, animal
medicine is the same; it is the essence and characteristics orthe
animal that can be tapped into.
Power animal is another shamanic term that refers to the idea
that the spirit or animals can physically and psychologically ems
power us, hence the term ‘power'.
Totemism is a system or beliefin which people have a mystical
relationship with a spirit being such as an animal (or a plant).
The spirit interacts with the group or individual and serves as
their symbol. The term ‘lolem’ derives from the Oilbwa word
‘ololeman', which translates as ‘orle's brotherssister kinl. The
Ojibwa clans traditionally emulated their animal spirits by wear
ing animal skins and often named their clans alter animals that
lived in their immediate area. Apparently the Great Spirit girted
the toodaims (totems) to the Ojibwa clan as a reminder that clan
members are all related to one another.
Group totems are often based on myth or ritual and a