Current Update as of May 24, 2005
Inspired by The Edgar Cayce Institute for Intuitive Studies
Edited by HENRY REED, Ph.D.
Book Summary by Linda Brown
"Mitaku Oyasin" means "all my relations" and is a means of honoring everything (animals, weather, spirits, peoples of all nations, death, life - the list goes on and on). Mitaku Oyasin embodies heart-learning, soul-learning and spirit-learning.
the animals with whom we interact during a lifetime, we engage in these
three types of learning. Animals provide us with many lessons, although
over time we have distanced ourselves from them and nature.
has had relationships with animals from the time she was a small child.
She reminds us that the animals we experience when we are young come
to us to be remembered; each of them contains a message. This story-memory
can be a catalyst for healing when we honor and tell it, either written
was eight years old, McElroy learned her first lesson about boundaries
from rats. The rats were babies when she put them on the dining room
table and watched, horrified, as they all ran in different directions
off of the table.
animal, Gaia, was a gray wolf and not a "physical" animal
it all. Gaia usually appeared to her in dreamtime, in visualizations,
everywhere except in ordinary, physical reality. Gaia was a power animal,
one she met when undergoing cancer treatment.
wolf, one she never knew, impacted her life through the stories told
about him. He was called #10, and was part of the wolf restoration project
A pet dog,
Strongheart, was one she bought to keep the neighbor's yellow Labs out
of her fenced yard and away from her miniature donkeys. She found him
via the Internet, where his description was "livestock guarding
dog." He was a pure-bred Anatolian Shepherd Dog puppy.
Strongheart taught McElroy a level of inner safety, but also instilled in her a fear for himself and others and knowledge that none of us are completely safe from outside forces. Strongheart reminded her to claim her empowerment and create a sense of safety for herself in a violent world.
are a combination of light and darkness and it is interesting how our
pets mirror qualities we ourselves possess. We often project upon them
parts of ourselves that need healing. Our pets validate our experience
of the life we are living.
As a child,
she had a phobia about spiders. As an adult she made herself go to a
pet store numerous times, until finally she was able to hold a tarantula
in her palm. The tarantula climbed up to her neck and across her face.
Susan McElroy writes because experiences and stories can bring to the forefront more than our conscious mind can. Writing brings meaning to the stories. The stories are a way of calling forth the sacred. Animals can be our friends, family and teachers.
point in her life she was given a thoroughbred mare, "Fashion".
The mare was old, arthritic, thin, and had a tangled mane. She could
not see what possible use she had for such a horse.
story was the one about Kulu. He was a chimp in a zoo and McElroy became
caretaker to him when she was nineteen. She took him to her house and
took care of him so that he would bond with her, which he did.
about Kulu introduced the subject of animals in bondage. Examples are
animals in zoos, rodeos, and breeding cages. Some people think animals
should not even be kept as pets, that this goes against their wild nature.
Relations is about human-animal relationships. The one thing of importance
in life is connection. This holds true with animals as well as people.
All animals that enter our lives, just as all humans who do, come to
teach us lessons.
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