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Animals/Interspecies Communication
Record Type: Review   ID: 892

Animal-Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small

Andrews, Ted

This is a marvelous book on animal EHEs by a mystic, shaman, and psychic who has had lifelong experiences in nature and with animals, especially birds of prey. Those who have not had first-hand experience of the natural world and are not in touch with it and sometimes denigrate it put themselves and all of us, including Earth itself, in peril. As Andrews expresses it, "the saddest part is that when we fail to reverence any aspect of nature and our intimate connection to it, we are failing to reverence intimate aspects of our own self" (p. ix).

Animal-Speak is in four parts: Symbols of the Natural World, Winged Enchantment, Understanding Animal Medicine, and the Exotic Language of Insects and Reptiles. One aim of the book is to revive the spirit of totemism and to show people how to imbue their lives with it. The descriptions of totem animals and birds are very interesting. Another aim is to teach the art of augury as it is expressed in natural signs and omens and landscapes. Andrews’ primary message is that "every animal has something about it which can be honored.…Animal wonders are everywhere. Every animal is a wonder that helps remind us of our own wonderfulness. When we begin to see one aspect of the world with new eyes, we begin to see ourselves with new eyes as well" (p. 368). This squares exactly with our concept of exceptional human experience. Many EHEs stem from anomalies of personal experience, in which we see something new, outwardly, inwardly, or both, for the first time. This puts us in touch with our greater self, which includes not only ourselves but Earth and all its creatures and ultimately, the universe itself. Andrews is right. Each time we connect with this more that we are and life itself is we become more than we were and more conscious of our connectedness to all. This is a practical book, which both educates the reader and shows him or her ways to personally connect with the natural world and with Earth, which is our glorious home. The author’s sense of wonder is infectious, and the knowledge he has gained at first hand is well worth learning.

Publisher Information:St. Paul, MN: Llewellyn, 1998. Pp. ix + 383. Bibl: 373-376; 71 figs; 6 illus; Ind: 377-383; 28 photos
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