Ever since I’ve been working with my power animals and helping my students and clients to find theirs I have coveted Ted Andrews’ classic book Animal Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small. I have seen it several times and been impressed, but it was one of those purchases I never quite got round to. Now I have procured my own copy I am absolutely delighted with it!
In the animal dictionaries Andrews provides a detailed overview of a host of individual birds, mammals, insects and reptiles in turn, creating an easy to use reference book for looking up your animal guides. I found his entries for my own personal allies fantastically helpful and they gave me new insight into the messages my animals were trying to convey to me. Your own helpers, or their very close relatives are likely to be included in this volume, providing you don’t have prehistoric or fantasy power animals, as this book is very much about animals living and breathing on Earth today.
For those who don’t yet know which animals are working with you Andrews includes a chapter devoted to helping you find them and to understanding what animal totems are about. There are lots of helpful pointers in this section here and a beautiful visualisation to try.
Although the book is excellent for dipping into and looking individual animals up, it is far more than a simple directory. Andrews has included sections designed to help you work more closely with the energies of the animals. I enjoyed the section on animal augury and feel developing this greater awareness enriches our relationship with the natural world and shows us how intrinsically connected we are to the web of life.
I like that the book is so rich in practical exercises that are very user friendly. There are plenty of ideas that are easy, accessible and safe for a complete novice and many more included for those of us that are keen to explore more deeply, covering such areas as shapeshifting and using ritual dance to connect more strongly with the animal energies.
Overall I’ve found Animal Speak to be wonderfully comprehensive, looking at animal energies from so many angles. I particularly enjoyed to amount of space devoted to our feathered friends as many of my helpers are winged. I love working with feathers in my healing, but my methods have all been intuitive up until now. Here at last I found a section on working with feathers, which has given me some new techniques and ideas to try.
If you love working with the animal kingdom or would like to try to make these magical connections then don’t delay adding this superb book to your collection.