Well, as today is Imbolc (Merry meet, all), I decided to take myself for a nature walk and see if I could find any wood to make a carving (I couldn’t). Along the way, I saw many creatures, which I will list momentarily, but I’d like to touch base on my favorite animal, although not a totem of mine: The Squirrel.
(List of animals seen)
- Pileated Woodpecker
- Bottlenose Dolphin
- Barred Owl
- Mourning Dove (heard it)
I’ll work my way through them as the days go on.
The noble squirrel spends its life in the following pattern: scurry, stop, look, scurry, pick up food, stop, look, devour, scurry….
The squirrel is most often prey to big birds, padding for roadways, and a general nuisance in some areas. They chitter, they horde, and they’re generally fun to watch and adorable. Spiritually, the squirrel perhaps closely mimics what we do on an everyday basis – they are constantly making decisions that could ultimately be life or death. They carefully ponder with their small brains what they’re going to do, when they’re going to stop and make sure they’re okay, when it’s okay to eat and when it’s okay to let the dumb humans take pictures of them.
The squirrel, seems to me, represents the everyday trials of life. You probably pass squirrels wherever you are, and you don’t pay any mind to them – they are simply tree-rats, or everywhere. What omen could possibly come from a squirrel if you see thirty a day? A sign, perhaps, to look at your lifestyle. Are you constantly vigilant for dangers that can come from any direction? I’d imagine around here a squirrel could become gator food relatively easily. The skies are full of big birds that like squirrel meat, never mind larger cats, wild dogs, and children which all roam the forest’s depths.
The squirrels, then, could also represent chance. After all, its not every day they’re going to be nearly caught by a Red Tail or a Red Shouldered Hawk, and most of the humans they encounter are more amused than bloodthirsty. The squirrel, too, could represent adaptation in adverse – urban – conditions.
Lessons can be taken from every animal we encounter.