The bear is one of the strongest of all creatures and Native people from the North East of Canada, where I come from, consider the bear as very close to Great Spirit. It’s the animal associated with the energy of the West cardinal point. Our legends say that Creator created other creators that created other creators, that created what we have on earth, but that the bear comes straight from Great Spirit, like humans do. Actually, if you take the skin off a bear, and hang up the carcass without the outer fur, very strangely it resembles a human being. The bear is like the human in respect that it can eat anything, it has a very varied diet: it can eat roots, leaves, larva, honey, meat, it knows all the medicine herbs and roots, it eats anything, just like Man.


The beaver – totem animal

Castor beaver totemA lot of teachings come from the beaver, which is a very family-oriented creature, an ecologist and a builder. Beavers will build very intricate houses, with several entry points and exit points, very comfortable, and there will often be several generations living together, as much as three or four generations. They modify the ecology of the place where they live by building dams along the water flows where they build their houses, which are actually built into these dams. The small lake that forms behind these dams creates a whole new ecosystem.

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