Native American Tattoo Designs Laramie WY
Native North America Tattoo Designs & Symbols
It is not surprising that in traditional tribal tattooing, animal designs and symbols predominate. Animal tattoo designs and symbols have extraordinary power and are meant in some way to transform to an individual so that they take on some aspect of the animal tattooed upon their person.
For indigenous peoples around the world, every aspect of creation can serve as a spirit guide for humans. All creatures great and small, indeed all living forms, from mighty oak trees, to the reeds that bend but do not break in the fiercest winds, possess qualities that teach us about the world we live in. There is no dogma associated with this kind of knowledge, although many of the cultures that believe or believed in spirit guides were also cultures that perceived the earth as divine and their spiritual beliefs were often a form of animism or shamanistic.
Animals are revered as creations of Nature, and so are held as examples of survival, brotherhood, and knowledge of the ways of nature. They are without human treachery or hatred, and haven't the capacity for self-destruction or degradation of the environment. They are part of the natural order of the universe rather than living outside of it or against it.
It is said of the ancient people of the Americas that they knew how to communicate with animals. The power was lost when humans opted out of the natural order and placed themselves above all other species. Nevertheless, it is still believed that communication from animal to human still exists in the form of psychic telepathy and through the spirit. In order for humans to understand communication from an animal spirit guide, it is necessary to prepare oneself through practice, patience and humility.
Often times specific animals or spirit guides would be made apparent through dreams or visions, or through the intervention of an intermediary such as a shaman or a medicine man who had a special gift for understanding the natural world. The vision where an animal spirit guide presented itself to an individual was often part of a ritual or ordeal that might include the use of fasting for many days, dancing until exhaustion, the use of sweat lodges that used extreme heat, or solitary 'vision' quests where individuals went into the wilderness on their own on long journeys of self-discovery. It was also not uncommon for individuals to use plants and other substances, for example the use of peyote or fermented alcoholic beverages, to alter ones state of mind to be more open to a vision. Each of these activities can cause a change in our perception of reality or alter our consciousness, making a vision not only possible, but likely.
Animal totems can be compared to Jung's archetypes, which work through the subconscious mind. They may be messengers, guides or protectors. One doesn't choose an animal guide, nor does one take one on the advice of others. Only through the Creator does a spirit guide visit the individual. When a connection has been made b...