Spirit Animals: MR. BADGER

He prefers only to leave his burrow when necessary. He would rather not encounter anyone besides his next meal when he’s out. His responses to inquiries from others are gruff. If he decides to respond at all.   He would prefer to go through the effort of adeptly and quickly digging a new hole than to face whomever has decided to pester him. Whoever does push too hard will find that he does have a backbone. When cornered Mr. Badger will not back down. He will fight fiercely and inflict serious damage. His companions are dirt, roots, and stones. He is fulfilled through his connection with the Earth. His solitude brings wisdom.

The consummate introvert, badger lives alone in a network of underground burrows. He will usually go out day or night to dig for his favorite meals of grubs, worms, and rodents. If he lives in a populated area he will change his schedule entirely to avoid humans and will become nocturnal. How many introverted people do you know that are the same way? Are you this way? The meaning of badger is to help you release the guilt associated with being a recluse and stand in your truth. Do you find you’re easily irritated at rush hour? It may be time to adjust your schedule.

Badger does have a few friends and can be seen cooperating with coyote to find rodents to eat and will associate with his own kind during mating season, but his friendships are pragmatic and he mostly keeps to himself. He has a lot of time with his claws in the Earth to make friends with the plants and minerals. For this reason, Mr. Badger is a great ally to help you understand the healing power of the Earth. People who keep jars of roots and piles of stones in their cupboards have badger medicine in their bones. Many people do this and do not understand what to do with all they’ve stored away in their dens. Badger spirit animal can help them sort this out while waiting out long winter storms.

Just because badger limits his contact with the outside world does not mean he’s not wise about it. Mr. Badger is actually an acute counselor because he is able to connect, without distractions, to his study. He can see and effectively dig below the surface of any situation without judgement. What he uncovers in the subconscious is sustenance for him and he is familiar with these things. He does not carry all the usual fear of the unknown below the surface that we do.

The term “to badger” comes from a terrible sport called badger-baiting wherein a dog is released into a badger den and is encouraged to attack the badger. When the two become locked together they are drug out by the dog’s tail and extricated from each other. The badger is placed back in the den and the fight is started all over. This goes on for many rounds. When we are feeling “badgered” somehow we feel the energy behind this scenario. We feel attacked in our sanctuary over and over again, all for sport. When asking yourself what does badger mean ask yourself if you have entered into this unhealthy cycle. Now is the time to recognize that you have the power to move on, create sanctuary and dig a new burrow away from this madness. The claws and strong will you possess cannot be won over by such shallow and cheap means.

The mask of the badger is in stark contrast to their course, mottled gray and tan coat. It is believed that badger got his name because his mask resembles a “badge” as in a coat of arms. This obviously speaks to the fighting ability of badger, but many hermits wear their solitude like a badge. Introspection can lead to great wisdom worthy of a badge of honor, but just remember that this medicine out of balance can lead one to become to a judgmental, gruff curmudgeon. The line between the two ways is as defined as the white streak splitting down badger’s head. Badger spirit animal can help you walk this line to come to a place of both enlightenment and kindness.

“There’s no security, or peace and tranquillity, except underground. And then, if your ideas get larger and you want to expand–why, a dig and a scrape, and there you are! If you feel your house is a bit too big, you stop up a hole or two, and there you are again! No builders, no tradesmen, no remarks passed on you by fellows looking over your wall, and, above all, no weather. Look at Rat, now. A couple of feet of flood water, and he’s got to move into hired lodgings; uncomfortable, inconveniently situated, and horribly expensive. Take Toad. I say nothing against Toad Hall; quite the best house in these parts, as a house. But supposing a fire breaks out–where’s Toad? … No, up and out of doors is good enough to roam about and get one’s living in; but underground to come back to at last–that’s my idea of home.” ― Spoken by Mr. Badger in Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind in the Willows


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spider symbolism

Spirit Animals: MOTHER SPIDER

Spider Symbolism

Spider spirit animal tests the space in front of her by delicately lifting the front one of her eight legs. Her furry appendage tenderly caresses the air feeling the breath of the forest collectively and the movements of the creatures around her individually. The only thing that gives away her active, sentient thoughts is the small, almost nervous, twitching of the two feelers on either side of her mouth.

This is mother spider. She weaves webs, climbs trees, and digs burrows. But always, she ambushes her prey.

Spider Dream Meaning

Dreams about spiders can speak about where you may feel trapped in your life or where you are experiencing greater connection to all things. It depends on if you’ve found yourself in an overwhelming web of lies, opinions, or judgements or if you are in the space of owning your power and writing your own destiny.

Most people are afraid of spiders, so having dreams about spiders is a frightening experience. Take a look at what fears have come up for you lately. Spider spirit animal has crept into your unconscious to help ensnare the fears and bring them out into daylight. It’s time to stop blindly running into traps and instead weave the life you envision for yourself.

You are not a victim here. You have the power to navigate your way down the strands that will unlock an unlimited number of options for you. Like spider spirit animal at the middle of the web, you have the potential to go any way you choose. Getting those fears out of the way is the key.


Find your spirit animal workshop. Painting of red-tailed hawk.


Help Overcoming Fears

Spider symbolism is powerful and the presence of mother spider in your life is not to be taken lightly. She has come to help you work with your fears. Ask spider totem animal to help you muster the courage to look at the fears that are behind the negative, critical thoughts of yourself and others.

Often when we get critical it is because we are trying to protect ourselves from something we are afraid of. It’s as simple as the arachnophobic person saying, “I hate spiders”…. the truth is “I fear spiders”.

Allow all the little fears to pour out of you into your journal. It is these fears that are preventing the creativity in your life, not the judgments of others. You’ll find that spider spirit animal will come to collect all the little eggs of fear and transmute the energy into creativity, hatching dozens of creative helpers in your life that can help you spin beautiful webs.

Weaving a Written Web

It is said that spider created the alphabet and is the mother of the written word. There is no better companion to welcome to your home to help you wield your words on paper. What more is a story than the creation of a new reality?

In spinning a web, spider literally weaves a new plane of existence, an entirely new world. This world can be flat, round, linear or circular. It all depends on what species of spider you are watching. Each has their own unique weaving style. What is the signature of the species you watch now? What does this mean about the paths you have available?

The spider has eight legs, so spider symbolism is associated with infinity like the number 8. Imagine you now stand at the center of a web of possibilities with an unnumbered variety of paths to follow. Which is yours?

Spider meaning is strongly tied to the networker archetype who expertly crafts webs of interconnectivity.

Burrowing Spider Symbolism

If you find yourself face-to-face with a non-spinning spider such as a wolf spider or tarantula you’ll be examining a different aspect. Rather than hanging suspended by a thread and opening up to possibilities, what is needed now is to burrow into the unconscious.

These spiders dig burrows in the Earth and wait patiently for their next meal to pass by. Go inside yourself. Snuggle into the smell of the soil, know who you are and be grounded in that. Here you are safe to confront your fears. Here spider spirit animal will find you and use the effective poison in her bite to transmute those fears into true power.

All you need will pass by the door of your tunnel. Turn inward, be brave, and trust that you are safe. There is no better companion to have accompany you on any forays into the unconscious to uncover the meaning behind WHY you do the things you do.

Spider spiritual meaning is about being incredibly sensitive to vibrations and sensing things you hadn’t felt before. Spider spirit animal can help you navigate the darkness and the fears and view them from a new, less threatening perspective.

World Travelers

Spider symbolism is about about the journey. Spiders are known to fly for hundreds of miles, even across open oceans, by casting out a strand of web and allowing the wind to take them thousands of feet aloft. This is know as “ballooning”. They have absolutely no control over where their journey will take them or how far they will go. They could go 20 feet or 20,000 feet.

Think about the amount of trust it takes to cast that strand and not know. Let go of control. Face the fears that cause you to try and be in control. Know that there is no such thing as control. Ask spider spirit animal to help you see that you are already on this unknown journey. Anything else is just an illusion.

I love this excerpt from David Abram’s book The Spell of the Sensuous about spiders:
It was from them that I first learned of the intelligence that lurks in nonhuman nature, the ability that an alien form of sentience has to echo one’s own, to instill a reverberation in oneself that temporarily shatters habitual ways of seeing and feeling, leaving one open to a world all alive, awake, and aware. It was from such small beings that my senses first learned of the countless worlds within worlds that spin in the depths of this world that we commonly inhabit.


Find your spirit animal workshop. Painting of red-tailed hawk.



immature red tailed hawk spirit animal


Before I completely lose the sensation of summer, I wanted to honor a message I received recently from a young hawk. One afternoon I was out orienting a new volunteer at the horse rescue when I was approached by another volunteer. “Hey bird lady, there’s a hawk with a broken wing out in the east pasture. Can you go check it out?”

So, new volunteer in tow, I rounded up a pair of gloves, a towel and a rubbermaid tub. We traipsed all the way out there, through the weeds, and along the fence lines. No hawk. I must admit, I was relieved. It is a paradox to receive a message from the spirit world carried on the back of a suffering animal. I feel humbled in the gift and smacked with my ignorance, not to mention the heartache of my empathy for the animal. Somehow I always wonder, “did I not hear the message the first time?”

I figured, wrongly, that the hawk had wandered onto the neighbor’s property to die in peace in the brush. The next morning I was approached again, “Hey bird lady…”

I drove out into the pasture in the golf cart with a pair of adult red-tails swirling and screaming overhead. There was the small beast standing stoic in the shade of the horse shelter. He had no fight left and the terrible stench of rotting flesh about him. His right wing was fractured. The dead, black bone stuck out an inch. A marble-sized colony of maggots had laid waste to the wound.

Immature red-tail feathers. I know them so well. An old friend of mine was in that plummage for most of the year we spent together. My dear Graccia often had that same determined look in her eye. There was no taking her off course.

“Just give up the ghost,” I said to the injured hawk as it stood in the box staring at me. There was no flesh left on his body. All the energy he had remaining was put to standing there, staring at me.

He died later that afternoon and my husband buried him under the old cottonwood.

So… the message? The active principle (right side wing) was broken, long dead, in my life. The effort that I had put forth into the world (the pair of hawks fledging a young hawk) had failed at its moment of glory. I had been stubbornly sitting on this failure too long (rotting wound). Put in plain terms, my inability to live in the season of summer, live in the fruition of my dreams, had become a systemic problem that had grounded me for way too long and that threatened to destroy my entire way of life.

Sounds dramatic, I know, but, wow, this hawk gave his life. We often hope for angels, miracles, and beams of light from heaven. We think divine messages come on wings, and, guess what? They actually do.


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