A Bear Totem or Spirit Guide symbolizes great strength, security and determination for the Shaman.
To American Indians, the Bear has a strong heart and unwavering will, and to Japanese and Siberian Shamans he is the leader of the animals, the animal that taught humans Shamanism.
Traditional names for the Bear include: King of the Forest and / or Grandfather, both of which show the respect that the Bear inspires in traditional Shamanic cultures.
And who would not admire the noble Bear, strong-willed and powerful, but also with great heart and supernatural powers?
- The Bear as power animal is intuitive and can often manifest healing. Imagine a bear hug. While one might not wish for such a real life encounter with a Bear, the all encompassing strength of a Bear animal familiar is a safe and reassuring environment for restoration of both body and spirit. The Bear Spirit Guide thus helps his shaman companion to heal mental, physical and spiritual wounds with intuition and self-assured courage.
- The Bear is a symbol of invincibility, offering a secure refuge for those who enjoy the company of a totem Bear Spirit Guide. The Shaman of Bear power animal has a determined ally in spiritual work, loyal and utterly dependable.
- The Bear is an introspective creature, independent and apparently aloof. He has with little need for fraternity, rather he is self-contained and strong-willed. A Bear Spirit Guide is of great support and comfort to those who crave human company simply for personal reassurance rather than for the simple pleasure of being with friends. He makes lonely periods of life far easier, and can help the Shaman to work in isolation to gain deep insights.
- The Bear represents female energies, hibernating to reconnect with the earth each year, and emerging with answers to spiritual dilemmas. Those with a Bear Spirit Guide can harness this natural connection with the earth to seek insights within.
In addition to the universal characteristics of Bear Spirit Guides, each species brings its own special qualities to the Shamans they guide in the spirit world:
- The Brown Bear, including the TAQUKAQ ( Grizzly Bear ) have a powerful life force, and a shaman with a TAQUKAQ power animal takes on this characteristic, becoming almost invincible when faced with physical or psychic attack. Beware the TAQUKAQ temper however, the dark side of this power!
- The Black Bear is a practical power animal, discerning and wise, less aggressive and more discreet than the Brown Bear. A well balanced, helpful and warm companion on shamanic journeys.
- The Polar Bear is perhaps the most powerful bear spirit guide, but also the most stubborn and determined. Little surprise he is such a force to be reckoned with given his harsh polar environment. A Polar Bear spirit guide is a very willful power animal, who can help his shaman charge achieve much, hunting out the desired result with a dogged single-mindedness. It is, however, important to discipline and direct his powerful instincts.
Shamans fortunate enough to have any of these Bear Spirit Guides enjoy much security, grounding and steadfastness in their company on shamanic journeys.