Shamanism and Native American spirituality speak of animal totems. These are important nature symbols used by people to get in touch with specifically required qualities found within an animal. A person’s totem animal will have qualities they need, that they connect with, or feel a deep affinity toward. You can work with more than one totem animal although many people tend to have a main totem that they work with all their life.
Raven is known as the “keeper of secrets” in numerous native tribes.
As a totem, Raven is the teacher of mysticism. Having such a wealth of myth and lore surrounding him throughout many cultures and ages, Raven is the ideal teacher of this subject.
The black color of ravens and their carrion diet associates them with darkness. This dark void represents the unconscious.
Raven brings heightened awareness and a deeper understanding of our consciousness. Raven allows us to see into the hearts of others using our newly found perception, helping us to empathise with their feelings.
Raven encourages us to experience transformation so that we can be reunited with the mysteries of the universe, and rid ourselves of our inner demons.
The Raven, Magick and Witches
Air and Water
Samhain and Imbolc
Station on the Wheel of the Year:
Northwest and Northeast
Raven is said to be the protector and teacher of seers and clairvoyants. In the past, witches were thought to turn themselves into ravens to escape pursuit.
The Raven as a Familiar
A familiar is a spiritual animal power or supernatural spirit, representing a species as a whole (i.e. Raven, not a raven) in a similar way to a Totem Animal.
A witch works with a familiar by drawing on a particular species for their strength and abilities. A familiar may also act as a guide to the Otherworld, and act as helpers in healing or magic.
The term familiar is also sometimes applied to a witch’s companion animal, such as the raven.
The Raven is a teacher, particularly of magical systems. If you find that one is attracted to you, it means you have the potential to be a great worker of magic. Raven does not care if this is for good or bad.
Raven familiars are not for the newly initiated – Raven only appears as a familiar to those who have progressed significantly down the path. Your consciousness must be at a certain level to understand the teachings Raven brings.
Raven brings the secrets from the underworld, particularly bringing the secret of transformation from the underworld to the world of magic.
Raven appearing physically out of the blue, or in a vision, is an important omen.
The Raven appearing in a vision can signify a warning, telling you to take heed as you may be in the dangerous territory or are attracting negativity to yourself through magic or other workings.
Alternatively, it can mean that the higher powers have acknowledged your progress in your magical workings and have sent Raven to instruct you further in the magical arts.