Getting To Know
Your Animal Totems

by Karen Mann, SoulCollage® Facilitator


Our animal totems are ready and waiting for us to discover the wisdom they have to offer us!

The Companion Suit in the SoulCollage® deck allows us to reconnect with the energy of animals and nature, and to connect with the power and lessons that the animal kingdom can teach us.

In his article titled A Return to the Animal Soul, Larson Hinton wrote:

The future survival of humankind depends upon return to a right relationship to nature. In this endeavor the animal soul is our most dependable guide. Since we no longer hunt in lonely communion with animals, and since few of us feel called to go on formal vision quests, we have to seek ways of recreating meaningful connection with the animal realm.

As you meet your animal guides/animal totems who are connected with each of your chakras, try to spend some time really getting to know that animal. Embrace the energy and the unique lessons that each animal totem has to share with you.

Research your animal companion to find out what unique attributes they have to share with you. Look at its body, its lifestyle and habitat. Then see what resonates with you. What attributes of your animal totem are already playing a part in your life? What attributes can you learn something new from?

Ideas for Getting to Know
Your Animal Totems

How does the animal move?

You may like to experience being the animal through dance or other physical movement. For example: lumber like a bear, run like a cougar, swim like a dolphin… etc.

Where does the animal live?

Exploring where your animal totem lives can teach you lots. For example: a mountain goat might teach you about being sure-footed as you go on a journey, seeking new heights.


My 1st Chakra Companion is  Beaver. A beaver builds a dam, using

wood, mud and leaves, cutting down trees with its teeth, to turn a stream into lake for it to live in. The beaver is persistent, hardworkin

g and resourceful, and I know that I certainly have these attributes.

What are its habits?

Is your companion nocturnal? Does it hibernate? Is it more visible in certain seasons? What light does this shed on your own habits and times of energy and power?

What does it look like?

What do its shape and colour suggest to you? For example: does a golden animal suggest the sun, or does a flash of red suggest danger and/or courage?

Flamingo is my 5th Chakra (throat chakra) animal totem. I learned that the vibrant pink colour of the flamingos feathers comes from what it eats. Without proper nutrition the colour fades away. This helped to teach me that I must nurture and care for myself properly, otherwise I will not be able to shine brightly and express myself authentically.

How does it defend itself?

Does your animal totem hide or camouflage itself, or does it defend to the death? What does this teach you about how your deal with conflict?

What does it eat and how does it find food?

Does your companion animal hunt alone or in a pack? Does it lure its prey or chase them down? Does it like sweet things? How does this relate to your experiences in your life? Are you a team player, or do you prefer to work alone? Do you go after what you want, or do you sit back and wait for things to happen? Do you seek the sweetness in life?

What are its mating habits and how does it raise its young?

Does your animal mate for life? Does it live in a pack or by itself? Are the young nurtured and defended for a number of years, or are they left


to fend for themselves from early on? Do any of these experiences resonate with things you have experienced in your life?

My 2nd Chakra Companion is Lemur. One thing that Ive learned is that many species of lemurs live in a matriarchal society. Working with this companion has helped me to explore my beliefs around the role of women in society and has encouraged me to continue my group work with women.

What can I learn from myths, legends, stories and folklore?

Explore fables, myths and legends from all cultures that correspond with your animal companion.


One of my animal totems is Pelican. In one legend the pelican is believed to wound her breast with her long bill in order to feed her young with her blood. Thus, the pelican became for me a symbol of piety, self-sacrifice, and maternal caring or solicitude. Through exploring the attributes of the pelican I have become more aware of my tendency to care for others, sometimes to the detriment of myself.

What are the positive and negative aspects of this animal?

Any energy within our SoulCollage® deck, and therefore our lives, can express itself in a healthy way, which encourages our development. In the same way, any energy in our SoulCollage® deck can express itself in a way that is not healthy for us, and may retard our growth. You may wish to explore how the attributes of your animal totems manifest in your life when there is balance, and what it looks like when this energy is out of balance.

For example, a beaver is industrious and resourceful, and reminds me that I can achieve anything I put my mind to (nothing is impossible!!!). I do however, have to be careful that I don’t embrace the belief system that everything I achieve will be a result of hard work. I need to take care that I don’t live my life manifesting situations where I have to work really hard before I achieve a result.

I really encourage you to get into research mode and spend some time getting to know your Companion animals. Spending time getting to know your animal totems is a wonderful way to learn more about yourself (and the world around you too).

Karen Mann is an artist, art teacher, Lifestyle Coach, yoga and meditation teacher, and SoulCollage® facilitator. Karen has been working with SoulCollage® cards for more than three years and facilitates a variety of SoulCollage® Groups. She also is a creativity coach and works one-on-one with people using SoulCollage® and a variety of other tools to encourage personal growth and creativity. Karen is based in Melbourne, Australia.

Are you excited about the possibilities, and do you want to know more? We’ve created the Wise and Wonderful 6 week e-course just for you! This e-course is a marvelous “souls-on” learning experience where you’ll discover some of your own animal totems, become more familiar with your own body’s chakras, and discover how your animal companions mesh with your chakras. Click on the image above to find out more now!