The eagle is the ruler of the sky and has the ability to transform itself. The eagle also has a connection with our creator. It symbolizes grace, power, and has great intellectual abilities. The Eagle is a sacred, wise and noble creature representing power and prestige to the First Nations People of the
The Eagle and can be identified by a powerful beak whose upper half ends in a strong downward curve with piercing eyes, feathers and large talons. The Eagle is frequently depicted on totem poles, masks, prints and jewelry.
The whale is known to help people in need whether we are helpless or wounded. The whale symbolizes kindness, intelligence and compassion. The Whale or Orca, is known as the guardian of the sea and guardian of travel and also can also be a symbol for unity and goodness. Killer Whales often travel in family groups known as pods and also hunt in packs like the wolf so are referred to as sea wolves. The Whale is a popular symbol for romance as they mate for life. It is because of this nature that they are known for their strong sense of family values and unity in numbers. The Killer Whale is the most admired of all the whales and is used as a powerful crest by many clans. Held in great awe for its power and size, it was believed a Killer Whale could capture a canoe and take it underwater to transform the occupants into Whales. Thus a Whale near the shore was a human transformed and trying to communicate with his family. The Killer Whale's song is said to be so beautiful that all creation is said to stop and listen to it. It is also said that to be splashed by a killer whale is to ensure great luck and happiness. In Northwest Coastal Aboriginal art Whales feature include a blowhole, a dorsal fin, a pectoral fin, and a tail with asymmetrical or symmetrical flukes.
The raven is a key part of many North West Coast legends and stories. In many stories the raven teaches us about life and right from wrong. The raven is often misbehaving but never boring. He symbolizes change in life, creativity, and humor. A key figure in Northwest Coast legends, the raven is involved in many creation stories and is also recognized as the bringer of light as it is said that the raven released the sun and moon. The Raven is known as a trickster or the catalyst for change, causing many changes to transpire as Raven gets bored quickly and is continually looking for things to amuse himself. Raven is quick to take action, extremely curious and at times greedy. Raven likes to be involved and often takes part in stories that have raven working to gain. Raven is motivated by self indulgence, though there is often a price that raven will pay, in the course of which causing beneficial things to happen at his cost. He could be taken as a symbol of the Coastal People’s view that the world has many faces, is a place full of surprises, neither good nor bad, often unpredictable. Raven has a long straight beak that is often seen with a circle in its mouth representing the story of having brought light to the earth.
The frog is a sign to our people to put away the winter activities and prepare or a new season. The frog symbolizes cleansing, peace and rebirth. In Northwest Aboriginal Culture, a Frog is a great communicator and often represents the common ground or voice of the people. A Frog embodies magic and good fortune connected with shaman or medicine man and with spiritual and therapeutic cleansing. Frog's songs are believed to contain divine power and magic. Frog is a messenger and communicator between species being valued for his adaptability because he freely travels between and survives in two worlds land and water, inhabiting both natural and supernatural realms. Frog holds knowledge and power and is known as a positive spirit driver. The Frog closely linked with femininity and womanhood often depicted to be woman in or springtime and new life. The Frog designs are often utilized as decorative elements and imagery are carved on practically everything the people utilize, including house posts, bowls, and totem poles where the frog is often seen peeking out with his tongue out and from under another creature's ears, mouth or hands. The Haida carved frogs on all of their house posts, believing that this would keep the poles from falling over. His shape and green body can identify the Frog and he is also most often depicted with a wide mouth, or grin, with an extended tongue.
The wolf is known for his intellegence. leadership and strong sense of familly values as well as being a great team player. He is also known to have strength in relationships. The wolf symbolizes perseverance, intuition and success.
The hummingbird sends messages to the people of things to come. Messages can be a spirit message or a message of healing. The hummingbird symbolizes beauty, intelligence, and love.
The butterfly has the ability to accept change, is also a messenger to our people. The butterfly symbolizes metamorphosis, balance and grace.
The beaver has a great understanding of nature and working in harmony with his surroundings. He is very flexible working towards goals and gaining a sense of achievement. The beaver symbolizes good work ethics, a strong will and protector, with a strong sense of family.
First Nations people perceived the owl to be linked with wisdom, foresight and the keeper of sacred knowledge. The Owl is a great foreteller of weather conditions and can be observed to identify changes in environment. He is the ruler of the night and the seer of souls, the symbolic meaning of owl revolved around guardianship of the underworlds and it is this relationship that gave the owl some negative associations with death. The strength of the owl would be invoked during ceremonies when prophesy of secret knowledge or a message of the unknown is involved. The owl has a family connection to sorcerers, as well as companions to seers, supernatural and medicine people. We are all visionaries and what we see is our soul in things. Owls can be identified in
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