From the Horse's Mouth

Mr. Polar Bear says hi

Posted in 1 by theskinhorse on September 20, 2010

After visiting a childhood friend, I was reminded of her closest animal ally: the Polar Bear. I slept soundly under the eyes of a dozen Polar Bears. The quiet was welcome, as was this new dynamic between her and me. The sleep-over was unplanned on my part and completely anticipated on her and her husband’s part. They had prepared the guest room with me in mind. I borrowed some pajama pants, an apple print. She even had an extra toothbrush. I experienced a comfort that I haven’t known in my adult life: the reconnection with my other half years later. We’ve both grown, but, with her, I feel all the magic of being seven years old again.

Polar Bear, Power Animal, Symbol of Purity, Death, Rebirth, Transformation

By Ina Woolcott

Polar bear’s medicine includes the ability to navigate along the earth’s magnetic lines , introspection, ability to find sustenance in barren landscapes, purity of spirit, strength in the face of adversity, solitude, expert swimmer through emotional waters, finding ones way back from the brink, communication with Spirit, dreams, death and rebirth, transformation, creature of dreams, shamans, mystics and visionaries, defence and revenge

Intelligent and fearless, native tribes throughout history have held the polar as a desirable ally and spirit helper. The white colour of the polar bear is very significant indeed, for it represents purity of spirit. As this bear is fearless and the universal energy only flows when fear is absent, the polar serves as a valuable ally in getting past fear, both physically and mentally.

To the Eskimo and Inuit peoples this animal is a source of both physical and spiritual nourishment. On a spiritual level, the polar bear is regarded as the embodiment of the spirit of the North, an animal who possesses ancient wisdom and has shamanic powers.

Of the bear family the polar is the most aggressive and carnivorous. They are exceptional hunters. Polar bears weigh up to 1600 lbs and are able to knock a 500lb seal out of the water with one blow. Incredibly strong, they are far more adaptable than other bear which is well suited to their excellent survival skills. Though they are one of the largest land carnivores, they are still capable of great speed on both ice and earth. They are able to swim 100 miles non-stop.

Although they have the same characteristics as other bears, the polar does have specific traits inherent to it. If this is your power animal you should read up on the information available about bears in general for a deeper understanding of this powerful medicine. If polar bear is (one of) your guide, you will have challenges linked with flexibility, change and stubbornness and should ask the polar for assistance in overcoming these obstacles.

Prior to acting the polar will observe the situation beforehand. They know how exactly how preserve their energy and strength and use both at the most appropriate time for the best outcome. This is just one of the lessons to be learned form the polar. Perhaps if this is your power animal, you would benefit by learning the art of energy management.

Within the animal kingdom the polar has no enemies. However, they do have but one enemy – the human hunter.

The polar is known as the “Ice Man” amongst some native tribes due to its preference for hunting on sea ice. How the polar appears to us is symbolic. If the polar were seen walking on ice, the message would be connected to the frozen, blocked, emotions stored within us and the need for allowing those emotions free flow, to express themselves. If seen looking for food, nourishment and replenishment of the body, mind and spirit would be the message. It is very important to watch the polar to get the right message.

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The Psychology of Solar and Lunar Bathing Rituals

Posted in 1 by theskinhorse on February 11, 2010

It is no secret that the act of bathing has ties back to ritual and spiritual expression (1). The ritual bath, before rites, worship or significant events, acts not only to cleanse oneself physically in preparation, but also to cleanse oneself psychologically and spiritually. The bath is in preparation for an event or act, but it is also an event/act itself. Attention is directed to the body as one experiences the graces of Water. Tension is eased, warmth is delivered, and a kind of release is found. As the body relaxes, the mind follows. This helps to shift our brain waves from attentive beta to receptive alpha.

The pace, purpose and psychology of the bathing ritual can vary greatly depending on the time of day it is performed. In the West, typically people bathe in the morning, in preparation for their work, visitations or leisure. Those that do not engage in the morning ritual of bathing can be viewed as lazy, unkempt, or unmotivated. The purpose of the morning bath or shower is to prepare ourselves for productivity and interaction with others. It is often quick and efficient so we can arrive on time to our destinations. The ritual coincides with solar concepts of waking, presenting and acting. The bath may ease our transition from sleep and alpha waves to wakeful beta waves as we continue the morning ritual by gathering clothes, eating breakfast and getting our tools for the day in order. It is, in essence, a solar life ritual.

Many Westerners seem not to enjoy the pleasures of the evening bathing ritual. There is a distinct psychological difference. In the evening, the pressure or motivation of the day and productivity is not ahead of us. We are free to take our time in the bath, to relax and unwind. The mental shift here is from the wakeful beta to the dreamy alpha. We prepare our minds for dreamscapes that we will find in sleep. We are not preparing ourselves to meet others or to perform tasks; we are preparing ourselves to meet ourselves and reflections of our psyche and to simply be. Time, in this ritual, is hardly a concern; Time has no place here. The bath is preparation for sleep, dreams and/or nothingness. By bathing in the evening, we shift our attention to focus on the significance of these concepts and experiences. Sleep, dreams and nothingness are MORE than just something that happens or we do, they are experiences worthy of preparation and reverence. It is easy to see how these concepts can be akin to the concept of death, an unknown experience where Time has no purpose. In this sense, the evening bath/shower is a lunar death ritual.

By switching our routine, we can experience the different psychology of the morning and the evening ritual. Depending how we approach and regard these rituals, our experience of them can greatly change.

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this end up

Posted in 1 by theskinhorse on May 20, 2009

Fireflies are dancing above my head, singing in a secret luminescent language broadcasting through the night sky. The ones that land on my hand I name Leroy or Harold, sometimes Celeste. They accompany me as I pack bags and boxes in an uninterrupted optimism. There is no rush at the house; the house will always be here, and in many ways, I will always be here in it … as I never was. I pack in an orderly fashion, though not to the level of efficiency as an ex-Naval officer. Each item I pick up lives sparks the memory and potential circuits. My mind roams over the pieces as my eyes outline the figures and inevitably reverse the images to then be decoded. My hands know the feeling sans visual stimulation.

I have decisions about when and how to move the boxes, if and what I leave at the house to pack for later or never see again. Some take up the offer of packing forever while others continually leave it all behind.

Though advised to make lists of what I own, I rarely did, and when I did, the lists often got lost later. If I can’t place it any longer, then what is the need of it? If I don’t recognize it as something of a part of me, then it isn’t (or [n]ever was?).

Hallway torches flicker as open windows usher in the crisp night air. The house talks, and its inhabitants, visitors and parts answer or argue. The way this house changes does not appear violent to me, though there are some parts I rather not venture; they are not essentially part of the house, still many agree on their “necessity,” worth or existence. Arguably, the bubble rooms from lengthy extensions can be considered unessential as well. Rooms often rotate as inhabitants often do. The house is a compilation; no ONE holds the deed.

coffee and my brother’s shirt

Posted in stream of consciousness by theskinhorse on April 20, 2009

It’s raining again.

I am wearing my brother’s shirt; it wears like a blanket.

Rainy days are good days for coffee.

I leave it unbuttoned, but pull it criss-cross closed in front of my chest.

Coffee is the incentive for getting out of the house on a day like today. (Still yet I sit.)

I wore my brother’s shirt a lot when my tattoo was healing; it is the most comfortable shirt I have. It reminds me of him.

My nose awaits the aroma of the brew.

The pattering of the rain lulls me into alpha state.

This shirt would be wonderful to sleep in.

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