Divining with Animal Guides: Answers from the world at hand

Understand the meaning of messages in your daily encounters.

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About the book

Invoking Animal Magic: A guide for the pagan priestess

Explore the wonders of animal wisdom and lore.

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About the book

Hearth Moon Rising uses personal encounters in this dazzling read that aims to open the readers’ eyes to a new way of viewing the world. ~ Elizabeth Konkel, San Francisco Book Review

Reviews

PaganPages

Excerpt from review of Divining with Animal Guides:

“I was delighted to discover that Divining with Animal Guides is not a cookbook dictionary, concretizing the ‘meanings’ of animal encounters. Author Hearth Moon Rising has created a manual for learning to observe and discern and ultimately, to shift our strictly human viewpoint. Only when we look at the context in which the animals offer us their messages are we able to fully understand their invitations and gifts.

(continued)

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Interviews

Radio Program with Susun Weed

Susun Weed interviews Hearth February 27, 2018 about animal divination.

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Ranging from the Historic to the Esoteric, this book [Invoking Animal Magic] is a witty, comprehensive resource for all those interested in Animal Magic. ~ Lisa Thiel

Latest Blog Post

And you follow ’till your sense of which direction completely disappears…

July 2, 2022

Regular readers of my blog may recall that a few weeks ago I mentioned that I had come upon Bobcat scent in the woods – so strong that I postulated I was near a den.

The Bobcat theme remains omnipresent in my life. A few days after that post, I came upon a dead Bobcat in the road as I was off to another hike. Never seen that before. It was a melanistic Bobcat, like many animals in the Adirondacks.

Then, earlier this week, another sign. I hiked to a secluded spot on Lake Champlain, with a beautiful view of Camel’s Hump Mountain in Vermont. A small boat trundled by, and as it passed me the sounds of the music the people were playing drifted back to me: Al Stewart’s “Year of the Cat.”

As I explain in Divining with Animal Guides, animal signs come in a variety of ways, not just the physical sighting of the animal. Still, I probably would have thought nothing of the Al Stewart song, though I’ve always liked it, if I hadn’t been getting other signs of Bobcat. Multiple signs, especially close together, are a strong indicator that the animal sign is an important one to consider carefully.

Taking the signs one-by-one, I note that the first has to do with scent: picking up scent, ascertaining that something is close by. Then, my own conjecture that I was near the place where the mother Bobcat lived. Scent is a very primal form of communication. Humans use scent to signal sexual availability (perfume) and for camouflage (the scents that mask odors). In a Bocat’s world, scents announce presence, most of all.

The second Bobcat was dead in the road. Death is about moving beyond physical limits into the spirit world. The mysterious seldom-seen Bobcat is considered to move between worlds anyway, so this accentuated this aspect. The body was in the road – my road – so the intimation was that this encounter with Bobcat energy is a part of the direction my life is taking.

“The Year of the Cat.” This song is about a man who allows the allure of a place and a woman to distract him to the point that he has lost his exit route. He is not a prisoner, exactly: he knows someday he’s “bound to leave her,” but he’s content with the situation for now. This underlines the idea of the Bobcat I saw in the road being about encounters that are unavoidable. And the song came from a boat, another means of travel. Furthermore, the sweet refrain “Year of the Cat” came across water. The Bobcat is one of the felines that likes water, swims well, and even hunts creatures around water holes. Water is symbolic of travel to the spirit world.

Photo: Steve Hillebrand, USFWS

Multiple signs can give information that make interpretation easier. This is why I believe that the best response to an ambiguous sign is to wait for another sign, rather than looking up the meaning in a book. I mean, go ahead and do that, but keep your mind open to other interpretations and be ready to readjust your conclusions.

What are these three Bobcat signs, taken together, telling you?

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