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polar bear power animal

Spirit Animals: MASTER POLAR BEAR

His world is frozen, with landmarks often hard to find. To make matters more challenging, the wind constantly moves the drifts and the floes carrying his plans and thoughts asunder. He does not have a preference for one way, the way, but rather relies on the wisdom of the ages and the abundance of the underworld to carry him through. He’s been doing this for a long time you see. He was the one who knew who we were before…

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hope hardship horses

Hope in the Face of Hardship

Those of you that own a troubled horse may know a particular type of isolation I am familiar with, the type of loneliness that comes when an expert looks down their nose at you and says, “this is too much horse for you” or the kind of despair that comes from finishing yet another clinic in humiliation because your horse was the most explosive, fearful, defiant, you name it beast there and everyone knew it. I can’t tell you how…

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northern harrier hawk power animal

“No Sense of Direction” from Gracious Wild

The following is an excerpt from the book Gracious Wild: A Shamanic Journey with Hawks… I went in to see Thalia around noon. I was able to coax her onto the stump near the front door with a piece of chick. Once her appetite was whetted, she was eager to come to me. The first pounce on my gloved hand was pure bliss. I watched her slender, long legs dance as her fierce talons gripped my fingers hard. She bent down to tear at the meat…

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raven spirit animal

Spirit Animals: ALCHEMICAL RAVEN

Raven Spirit Animal This massive black creature brushes his wingtips along mountainsides. His black eyes drink in entire landscapes as a subtle breeze holds him aloft. Once he decides to go somewhere in particular, his undeniable determination is audible in the whir of his heavy wingbeats. He does not keep many companions. On occasion he will join with a troop of two or three others to cackle at the wind and tease the two-leggeds that clumsily lumber along on the…

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island gracious wild

“Humble Island of the Soul” from Gracious Wild

“I opened my eyes, stretched in my sleeping bag, and looked around. After a few moments, I recognized where I was and realized that I still wasn’t. I still wasn’t much of anywhere or much of anyone.” (from Gracious Wild: A Shamanic Journey with Hawks) These are the first three lines of a book that I wrote on a crisp fall morning seven years ago. These are the first three lines of a story I lived many mornings of my life what seems not…

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grounding stone

How to: Grounding

It is hard to trace back to when the term “grounding” became a way to describe relieving stress, being calm, and becoming present. I hear so many people use it casually in every day language, but stop for a moment and think. Do you really know what grounding means? This is a worthwhile contemplation because if you don’t know what it means then you won’t know how to do it. It becomes this intangible thing that you think you should be…

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gracious wild book

PRESS RELEASE – Gracious Wild

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (PDF VERSION) A quest into the wild and important spirit messages and soulful gifts gathered from animals while there…  Gracious Wild: A Shamanic Journey with Hawks Stacey L.L. Couch “A highly recommended, beautifully written story of power and transformation.” ─Kay Kamala, editor for A Journal of Contemporary Shamanism “This exquisitely written book warmly touches hearts and gives flight to the soul, while offering opportunities for healing and cathartic release. Don’t be surprised if Gracious Wild moves you to tears and helps…

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meaning of magpie

Spirit Animals: MAGPIE the MYTHOLOGIST

Magpie goes about her business, chattering to and fro. Both of the old world and of the new, she wears her black and white costume with her brothers and sisters going on about life as if everything were normal. Then a ray of sunshine glimmers over the tips of her wings and tail and a burst of royal blue radiates. She knows this and she is clever. She does not worry if the rain will come or go. She is…

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Medicine Wheel by Season

Calling the Directions & The Medicine Wheel

Honoring the directions within the framework of a medicine wheel is a common practice of shamanism found throughout the world and at the root of each of our ancestral lines. This prayer to honor the directions can be called a number of things depending on the culture and preferences of the person praying. Some say we are “calling in the directions” while others state we are “calling ourselves to the directions”. Others just see that we are setting up sacred…

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barn owl gracious wild

“Letting Go” from Gracious Wild

Gracious Wild is primarily about my relationship to two spectacular hawks, but other animals including one defiant barn owl contributed to the story as well. This excerpt from the book Gracious Wild tells about how “Papa Rhett” taught about letting go. I would also say, behind the scenes, that this owl taught me a lot about not caring what other people think. When you have supernatural hearing and sight like he did the truth is always there with you. Why bother…

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