I saw a social media post this morning in which someone was asking everyone to share what type of animal their power animal is.

I learned shamanism almost 30 years ago at the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, and have been practicing and occasionally teaching shamanism since 1990. One thing I was taught and have always shared with my students is to keep what your power animal is a secret. The words secret and sacred have the same word origin. When we tell other people what our power animal is, it becomes harder for the power animal to help us…because we are not honoring the sacredness of the relationship with it.

I thought there might be people who would like to know this. You do not have to agree. This is just information I am sharing for anyone who might want or need to hear this. Shamanism has been practiced on this planet for at least 50,000 years (the evidence is in cave art which can be carbon-dated) and the wisdom gleaned over that time and shared by those who practice and teach it is significant. Some folks think they can take a class and then do whatever they like – change it up to suit themselves. There is a significant problem with that, given how powerful shamanism is, and how damaging it can be if misused. What these people do not realize is that they are holding themselves above thousands of generations of shamans who practiced, gathered and shared information for the benefit of all those to come after them. And to misuse the method is to invite tragedy first for others, and ultimately for oneself.