I had a dream about a rogue wolf eating a Native American shaman’s bag of weed brownies after wandering into his camp. 30 minutes later, the wolf attempted to chase down a moose.
It gave up after about 20 yards and eventually ended up laying down in a 7-11 next to the ice cream box, licking the pictures of Tweety Bird shaped popsicles until it fell asleep. It made me wonder: how often does this play out on a daily basis with creative people and the satisfaction that they hunt with their passions and talents?
Contemplate the majesty of the relentless carnivore in motion. That righteous, savage pursuit of the mission fueled by concentrated primordial focus. A lightning bolt of nerves that sends enough adrenaline coursing through a 900 pound jungle cat’s frame to send it flying three Shaqs horizontal in a single bound. A laser-targeted lunge that crashes with enough impact to devastate its target more thoroughly than a runaway locomotive wrapped in student loan interest.
Take the terrifying awe of carnivores capturing their prey just like that, and then think: how many others, with identically shaped claws, fangs, and iron spring muscles, are just laying on their backs getting blazed six ways to Venus on Doctor Rafiki’s mind mash grass?
To put things in perspective, a few relevant cases in recent nature news:
After a species restoration project that went on for longer than a decade, the 1,000th California condor chick egg hatched at the Zion National Park.
News has come out that the world snow leopard population has finally been preserved enough to take the snow leopard out of endangered status.
An elusive New Zealand bird that people thought to be extinct is having its most successful breeding season yet.
Sometimes, when we’re not murdering them or making them into memes, we humans can be pretty damn decent at working in other species best interests. However, besides those creatures that live on the outside, what about tending to the inner creature’ needs with the same care? What about working just as hard to nourish that inner beast as our best nature conservationists can work to turn around the livelihood of an entire species?
Here’s where we leap back on over to the neoshamanic era: the rough point in time in history that birthed the concept of “spirit animal”.
To some, the spirit animal could take the form of just about any avatar. A raven. An impala. A snow leopard. A killer whale. What I’m concerned with really isn’t the shape or color or texture of the hypothetical animal avatar, but the execution. The action. The function. What animals are is what they do. What they do is their instinct. Their instinct is instant execution. And in this state of constant execution, they are complete. As they are complete, their environment is complete. Until someone decides to build a parking lot.
In other words, acting in congruence with your calling is letting the spirit animal follow its instincts, thrive in its environment and nourish that environment by extension.
This isn’t a call to get down on all fours and start biting out throats for dominance in the coffee break room. Embracing the inner spirit animal doesn’t mean getting into cockfights over ketchup packets in the parking lot. Excess aggression, volatility and restlessness not the sign of a thriving animal. That’s just rabies. It’s not senseless savagery, but pure authenticity.
This is a simple matter of letting the inner bird take flight, because that is its unspoken, unconditional calling. Letting the inner fish swim, because that is its unspoken, unconditional calling. Letting the inner red fox run through the field of consciousness and explore all scents. Because, to run and chase scents is the essence of the canine. Without a thought. Stone cold sober as the day of birth,
Recent aerial footage showed that large portions of the Arctic Circle are on fire. And in the hearts of many people, a similar phenomenon is smoldering. A mass spiritual simmering of the inner spirit animals’ will to act out their natural callings, with enough pressurized heat and dormant force in every heart to rival a volcano.
Melt the Arctic ice encasing that spirit animal’s essence with the fire of your action. Let it swim, let it fly, let it run and hunt without boundaries. Don’t let it get high off its ass and fall asleep next to the ice cream box. Not as long as the woods are wild.