The strength of Bear medicine is the power of introspection. It lies in the West on the great medicine wheel of life. Bear seeks honey, or the sweetness of truth, within the hollow of an old tree. In the winter, when the Ice Queen reigns and the face of death is upon the Earth, Bear enters the womb-cave to hibernate, to digest the year’s experience. It is said that our goals reside in the West also. To accomplish the goals and dreams that we carry, the art of introspection is necessary. To become like Bear and enter the safety of the womb- cave, we must attune ourselves to the energies of the Eternal Mother, and receive nourishment from the placenta of the Great Void. The Great Void is the place where all solutions and answers live in harmony with the questions that fill our realities. If we choose to believe that there are many questions to life, we must also believe that the answers to these questions reside within us. Each and every being has the capacity to quiet the mind, enter the silence and know.
Many tribes have called this space of inner-knowing the Dream Lodge, where the death of the illusion of physical reality overlays the expansiveness of eternity. It is in the Dream Lodge that our ancestors sit in Council and advise us regarding alternative pathways that lead to our goals. this is the power of Bear.
The female receptive energy that for centuries has allowed visionaries, mystics, and shamans to prophesy is contained in this very special Bear energy. In India, the cave symbolizes the cave of Brahman. Brahman’s cave is considered to be the pineal gland that sits in the center of the four lobes of the brain. If one were to imagine an overview of the head, the top of it would be a circle. The South would be the forehead, the North the back of the skull, the West would be the right brain, and the east the left brain. Bear is in the West, the intuitive side, the right brain.
For eons, all seekers of the Dreamtime and of visions have walked the path of silence, calming the internal chatter, reaching the place of rites of passage – the channel or pineal gland. From the cave of Bear, you find the pathway to the Dream Lodge and the other levels of imagination or consciousness. In choosing Bear, the power of knowing has invited you to enter the silence and become acquainted with the Dream Lodge, so that your goals may become concrete realities. This is the strength of Bear.
If you have drawn Bear reversed, your internal dialogue may have confused your perception of your true goals. In seeking answers or advise from others, you may have placed your own feelings and knowing aside. The time has come to regain your authority, for no one knows better than yourself what is proper and timely for your evolution. Reclaim the power of knowing.
Find joy in the silence and richness of the mother’s womb. Allow the thoughts of confusion to be lain to rest as clarity emerges from the West, nurturing your dreams as the Earth Mother nourishes us all. Bear in the contrary position is teaching you that only through being your own advisor can you attain your true goals.
Anything less than the doing of that which gives you the most joy is denial. To achieve happiness you must know yourself. To know yourself is to know your body, your mind, and your spirit. Use your strengths to overcome your weaknesses and know that both are necessary in your evolution.
Journey with Bear to the quietness of your cave and hibernate in silence. Dream your dreams and own them. Then in strength you will be ready to discover the honey that is waiting in the Tree of Life.
Excerpt from “Medicine Cards” by Jamie Sams & David Carson