In Native American traditions, Wolf is said to be "teacher" medicine. Humans have followed Wolf for millennia, studying Wolf's ways of the hunt, learning from their social structure. Wolf is allied with Sirus, the Dog Star, and it is said in many cultures, that our ancestors and teachers came from there. This is agreed upon by Australian Aborigines, and the Dogon tribe of Africa, as well as certain Native American tribes.
Wolf has much to teach us, if only we will listen. Wolf is allied to the moon and lunar energies, teaching us to respect our emotions and unconscious urges. Respect for the wildness of our animal natures, and willingness to face the dark within ourselves is an imperative for Wolf people. Trust in the unspoiled nature of your Child/Wolf self. Because the Moon rules psychic perception, Wolf people should work on learning to trust their intuition and psychic urges, to listen for the still small voice within.
The communal nature of Wolf's culture and hunting helps us to learn to cooperate to achieve a goal. Wolf people make good "team players" and are fiercely loyal to those they consider part of their pack. They often have strong leadership qualities, however they must often learn to balance their tendency for "social dominancing." As a predator, Wolf culls the sick and weak of the herd. Wolves are often quick to scent when a situation is "sick," and will work to change it. It is important that they learn to lead the situation gently, and without tearing others apart, or the pack may turn on them.
Wolf's capacity for communication suggests that Wolf people should learn to utilize the strength of their voice and to be aware of their body language. When dealing with Wolf people, listening for the nuances of vocal tone and watching their motions will help in gaining an understanding of them. Wolves often make excellent bards and storytellers.
Ritual is very important to Wolf. Both the little rituals of day-to-day conduct, and the bigger rituals of lunar howling. Whatever their spiritual beliefs, Wolf people will feel more in tune when they honor and re-link (the actual meaning of the word "religion") with the life force.
Wolves are the epitome of stamina, known to run 35 miles a day in pursuit of prey. They are highly misunderstood animals, who have gained the reputation of being cold blooded. In reality wolves are friendly and social creatures. Aggression is something they avoid, preferring rather to growl or create a posture to show dominance.
Even though living in close knit packs provide wolves with a strong sense of family, they are still able to maintain their individuality. Wolves represent the spirit of freedom, but they realize that having individual freedom requires having responsibilities.
Because wolf is a teacher and pathfinder, he comes when we need guidance in our lives. Those who have a Wolf Totem will move on to teach others about sacredness and spirituality. Wolf can also teach how to balance the responsibility of family needs and not to lose one's personal identity.
Wolf teaches us to develop strength and confidence in our decisions. He shows we will learn to trust our insights once we learn how to value our inner voice. This wisdom keeps us from inappropriate action. If wolf appears in your life examine where you need to develop more confidence and if you need more balance between friends, family, and yourself.
As I have mentioned previously, my totem is the Wolf. Wolf has come to me often over the years starting when I was somewhere around 8-9-10yrs old. No older than 10 because the last documented wolf in OK was killed in 1962. My grandparents had a dairy farm where I spent much of my younger years. It was not uncommon to see the bodies of coyotes & wolfs hanging on fence posts on the road to their farm. Hung there by the bounty hunters. It was a horrendous sight that I grew up seeing. I never became immune to the awful sight, the horror of it all. One day I got dropped off at the farm & was quickly admonished by my Nanny to stay away from the culvert (under the drive into the home place) because the hunters had corned a wolf under there & were coming back for it. Now when you tell me, or most any kid for that matter, not to do something because there is something really interesting there....well suffice to say I did not stay away. The ends of the culvert had been "fenced off" with wire mesh so I just laid on the ground in front of one end & stared in. There was the wolf, gleaming eyes, never growled, just moved a little forward & laid flat out on its belly. We just looked at each other for a very long time. It was a silent communication just between our two souls. That is the day that the Wolf Spirit entered/joined with my Spirit. I vaguely remember the wolfers coming & taking that beautiful animal. I know I was there when it happened because I remember it being caged & looking so resigned to its fate. I know that wolf did not die that day for he lives in me where his Spirit, joined all those years ago with mine, is safe & alive. He has guided me over the years--even the times when I forgot to listen. He comes to me in dreams, in visions, in fleeting sightings. I have seen him standing in my driveway as if watching over me & mine. I see him glide through my house, just checking in, just passing by. A pack comes to my dreams when I have big decisions to make or a situation is particularly stressful for me. They guide me home, figuratively & sometimes quite literally.
I carry my totem with me always--in my heart, my soul, a tatto on my thigh. I wear wolf jewelry quite often. I always have a statue, a picture or a painting in my house. Often one in every room. I visit wolf sanctuaries & sit & commune with the souls there. One of my favorites is Wolf Haven International in Tenino, WA (www.wolfhaven.org) where I have camped & howled with the wolves into the night--it was such an awesome experience. I have been going there since it opened (1982) & have seen the graves of wolves I communed with in the early years. If you live in WA or OR it is worth the drive to Tenino-they do awesome, informative, educational tours, & the wolves are fantastic. When you see the ravens, remember there were no ravens there until the wolves came, they are symbiotic. I have held wolf cubs in my arms, felt their hearts beating next to mine, smelled their scent & carry it with me always, stroked their fur & feel it under my fingers everyday.
I have given wolf totems to each of my tribe members to wear or carry with them. I have assembled my pack over the years & continue to do so. Not everyone I meet becomes a tribe/pack member. Some it takes awhile, for some it is an immediate acceptance, some never become a member & move on. No matter the distance between us we are joined. We honor the same full moon, we hear each other's howls & recognize the need that is spoken. We laugh & play, grieve & cry, hunt & celebrate when we gather together once more. We are solitary, we are a pack/a tribe---we are Family!!!