Innocence & Childlike Wonderment

Porcupine has many special qualities and a very powerful medicine: the power of faith and trust. The power of faith contains within it the ability to move mountains. The power of trust in life involves trusting that the Great Spirit has a divine plan. Your task is to find the pathway that is most beneficial for you and that uses your greatest talents to further that plan. Trust can open doorways to the creation space. The space thus created allows others to open their hearts to you and to share their gifts of love, joy, and companionship. Porcupine’s quills are only used when trust has been broken between Porcupine and another creature. Much like Otter, Porcupine is a gentle, loving creature, and non- aggressive. When fear is not present, it is possible to feed a Porcupine by hand and never get stuck by its quills.


Porcupine sat silently, looking at a hollow log. She wondered if it was a playhouse that nature had created just for her. Just as Porcupine was pondering what to do next, she saw Bear approaching. Bear was big and black and looking for honey. “Oh, another playmate to share my log,” she thought. “Hello, Bear,” she cooed. “Do you want to play and share my log with me?” Gruff old Bear snorted, “Porcupine, don’t you know that I am too old to play? You are in my way. I am looking for honey. Go away!” “Why Bear, you are never too old to play,” she replied. “If you forget what it was like to be a cub, you will always be as impatient and gruff as you are now.”


Bear began to think about what Porcupine had said. Maybe she was right. All the other creatures had run away from Bear in fright. Even the other Bears had turned up their noses when he growled at them. This little Porcupine was certainly trusting him not to eat her. She even offered to be his friend.


The old Bear looked at Porcupine and began to feel something move inside him. He started to remember the games he had played as a cub. Joy started to live in him again. “Little Porcupine, you have reminded me that in becoming strong and seeking answers, I got caught up in trying to be an intellectual. I became afraid of what others would think if I dropped my mask of gruffness. I was afraid they would not take me seriously anymore. You have taught me that in being a fuddy-duddy, I was causing others not to care for me.”


In choosing the Porcupine card, you have given yourself a gentle reminder not to get caught in the chaos of the adult world where fear, greed, and suffering are commonplace. The medicine in this card is that of relief from seriousness and severity. Open your heart to those things that gave you joy as a child. Remember the preciousness of fantasy and imagination, and the making of some game or toy from nothing but scraps. Honor the playfulness of spirit that lets everyone win.


In pulling the Porcupine card reversed, you are giving yourself a timely warning that you cannot win the game of life if you are too serious. In some are of your life, you may be feeling hurt or afraid of trusting again. It is possible that life has recently dealt you a hard blow. If this is so, it is time to begin again by placing faith in your ability to overcome the lesson with joy. Are you willing to trust yourself?


The ill-dignified Porcupine is belly-up, with its quills stuck in the ground. This is a rather defenseless position. Perhaps you needed to roll over to get your tummy patted. This position could therefore indicate that you are ready to accept a little love from others. In any case, if you are not willing to trust again, this card is forcing you to look at why. Or at why not!


Excerpt from “Medicine Cards” by Jamie Sams & David Carson