Original tales inspired by Native American and Norwegian folklore that highlight the wisdom of the divine natural world
• Shares unique stories about Earth Medicine and animal magic, inspired by the author’s unusual Native American (Hopi) and Norwegian upbringing
• Interwoven with ancient teachings and everyday practical applications of Earth Medicine, such as grounding and dream interpretation
• Each tale is beautifully illustrated with the author’s original art, which promotes spiritual understanding and the power of the Earth’s healing properties
• Paper with French flaps
Drawing on both her Native American (Hopi) heritage and her Norwegian upbringing, renowned mystic and intuitive healer Sonja Grace shares original wisdom tales, received through her heart and soul, to take you on a journey into the magic of Raven and Bear and the healing power of Earth Medicine.
Featuring Sonja’s distinctive and beautiful artwork, each story is embedded with ancient teachings to inspire you to live closer to the Earth. The fables include powerful examples of animal magic and everyday, practical applications of Earth Medicine, such as simple energy exercises, dream interpretations, Earth Medicine prayers and meditations, and using medicinal plants to manage negative energies. As background to the stories, Sonja reveals parallels between Norse mythology and Native American traditions and explores the symbology of animals and the recurring central theme of the tension between light and darkness. In Norse myth, the great god Odin, for instance, is often accompanied by Ravens. These birds are considered manifestations of the Valkyries, the goddesses who brought brave soldiers to Valhalla, while in Native American traditions, the Raven is viewed as a trickster or messenger, a magical creature with the ability to shapeshift into a human or animal, yet also portrayed as a hero overcoming adversity. The Bear on the other hand can embody the healer who grounds our energy and removes illness or can represent the inner part of us that has faith. In one fable, Sonja brings Bear to life as a mythical creature singing songs to bring in the light, reflecting the powerful lesson that by using our voice and speaking the truth we can hold darkness at bay. Throughout all of the stories, Raven and Bear teach us to be responsible for our actions and develop spiritual accountability.
By sharing these tales of Earth Medicine, Sonja offers not only a path of reconnection with the Earth but also medicine for the soul. She shows how the Earth works in unity within herself and provides a warehouse of knowledge for all who live upon her.
Creator came to Bear one day and gave him a drum. He told Bear that he must sing his songs when there is darkness he cannot escape. Bear took this very seriously and practiced every day. The Earth heard him singing and taught him songs for the water and the rain. He would go to the river and sing to the water, his tears running down his face . . . his love ran deep for the Earth. One-day, Bear noticed a darkness coming towards him. This cloud grew bigger and bigger and Bear started to sing. He sang his songs and beat his drum so loud he was sure Creator would hear him. He called out to Creator but did not get an answer. He worried Creator could not see or hear him because the darkness was becoming so strong. The Earth’s energy came up through his feet and Bear suddenly felt grounded and not afraid. He heard the Goddess whisper, “You must use your light with each song.” Bear was confused. “What is my light and how can I find anything with such darkness around me?” he asked himself. The Earth’s energy rose up into his legs right past his belly and into his heart. Suddenly a bright light came streaming out of bear’s chest and Bear started to sing and dance and play his drum. His voice was clear, and the sound waves mixed with the light waves beaming from his heart. As Bear sang his song the darkness began to shrink down into nothing and very soon it was gone as quickly as it arrived. Creator stood in front of Bear and said, “I am happy you have found the answer to the darkness. I have always been with you. My energy flows through the top of your head down to your heart and meets the Earth’s energy fusing together to create light. This light, combined with your voice, is like a tapestry woven together as a protection from all evil.”
He smiled at Bear and said, “You will always hold the darkness at bay.”
There are many ways Earth medicine can help us to heal and clear the darkness away. Before we begin to use the natural gifts the Earth provides, we must respect and understand that each living thing has a spirit. One way to show reverence for all living things is to ask permission before picking or cutting a plant, taking a rock or anything from nature.
In Native American cultures tobacco is used as an offering. I always carry a little tobacco and use it to pray with before gathering cedar or any of the other plants I use as a part of my practice. If you do not have tobacco to give, perhaps you can place a small amount of food for the spirit of the plant or rock. It is my belief that we must feed these unseen elements - just as we would feed our own family. We do not have to put a whole table of food out (although there are cultures who do this) just a tiny amount to make an offering.
In my opinion, the Western or Pacific Red Cedar tree is the best plant to use when clearing negative energy. First, I make an offering to the tree. Then I feel that I have permission to pick the greens from the tree and hang them up to dry. Once the greens are dry, I like to burn a small amount in a fire safe bowl or coffee can. When I light this, I allow it to flare up first and then I blow the fire out. I use the smoke throughout the house and body. This is called smudging. This clears out nega- tive energies. Cedar smudge sticks are also great to use but it is important to obtain a fire safe bowl or coffee can as that will prevent any stray pieces from falling away. You can use Juniper in the same way as it is related through Earth Medicine to the Cedar tree.
I use Sage for blessings. You can pick sage in the desert or grow sage in your garden. Remember to give an offering to the plant before you harvest. The smoke used from dried sage leaves is a way of asking Creator to bless an object, baby, house or ceremony. Sage has been mistaken by some people as the plant medicine to be used to clear away negative energy. Unfortunately, that has the wrong effect and actually blesses the negativity. Sage is a very sacred plant and needs to be honored for the Earth medicine it holds. Sweet Grass is used by many tribes in ceremony. This plant is considered the oldest plant on earth by the Ojibwe and Cree, who refer to it as the hair of Mother Earth. During sacred times the long grass is braided into bundles. The spirit of this plant is one that has assisted and protected many ceremonies.
Our four-legged friends, the winged ones, trees, plants and humans take their physical or dense form from the Earth. The Earth herself holds vast amounts of energy that is expressed in all forms of life. However, the soul of those life forms, be it a tree, animal or human has incarnated from somewhere else in the universe. We are all made up of organic material and so by connecting our energy with the Earth’s energy we create a powerful way to receive what we need when confronted by dark forces.
Dark forces are a part of dualism; the good and bad, right and wrong, light and dark. If we allow ourselves to dive into our fear, we are investing in the illusion of the duality. In order to protect ourselves we can connect by grounding our energy deep into the Earth. By going further in meditation, we will find inner peace and better observe the duality. Deep meditation allows us to step back as an observer and no longer engage any part of our energy into whatever is negatively confronting us. When our fear is activated by dark forces we give them power over us but if we chose instead to only observe, that power is diminished. In a state of observation, we connect with a much higher frequency that is source.
Sonja Grace is a highly sought after mystic, healer, artist and storyteller with both Norwegian and Native American heritage. As an intuitive healer, she has been counseling an international roster of clients for over thirty years. Sonja's ancestral background is a fascinating blend of Native American Choctaw and Cherokee descent and Norwegian. She has been adopted on the Hopi Reservation, where she is considered a medicine woman. The award-winning author of Spirit Traveler, Become an Earth Angel, and Dancing with Raven and Bear, Sonja has appeared multiple times with George Noory on Beyond Belief and Coast to Coast AM. She lives in Arizona with her husband.
“A beautiful, wise, and original book from the multitalented Sonja Grace.”
– George Noory, Coast to Coast AM
“Dancing with Raven and Bear is an archetypal avenue to the soul. This treat is long overdue in our high-tech information age where news and trivia inundate us, and yet we starve for real wisdom. Tension, tears, joy, and imagery that transcend time bring us empathy and truth while striking a universal nerve that penetrates and endures.”
– Timothy Kieran O’Mahony, PhD, FRGS, author of Every Child’s Potential
"The earth holds powerful healing energies. Animal Magic is meant to bring those into the awareness of those of us who are currently inhabiting the earth plane so that we can reconnect with Earth Medicine. This is a magical book which hugs readers like the bear to remind us of the joy of life in its pure form, and then removes the layers of misguided conceptions so that we can fly free with raven."
– Anna Jedrziewski, Retailing Insight
"Dancing with Raven and Bear is woven with the influence of all of Grace’s heritage and the reader can sense that her words and illustrations come straight from the author’s heart and own spiritual experiences with Raven and Bear. A charming little book of wisdom that is, in addition, a highly enjoyable read."
– Indie Shaman Magazine
"Sonja Grace shows parallels between Norse mythology and Native American traditions as she explores the symbolism of animals and themes such as being responsible for our actions, and the tension between light and dark. Her drawings illustrate each story. There are stories about dreams, carrying burdens that belong to others and parents who want their daughter to enjoy her childhood. Stories – ranging from one to six pages - are meant to guide readers to take care of their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual selves."
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