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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Animal Signs: Deer

I share my outside living space with a lot of deer.  They are around all the time, whatever the season, but sometimes they seem to really want to make themselves known to me. I wondered why they sometimes appear and other times seem to fade into the background. It doesn't seem to be related to seasons or weather, or time of the day. Over the past couple of days they have become very "in my face". I figure maybe they just want me to pay attention and write about them on my blog!

Deer as a totem animal, or as a sign from nature, encourage us to be gentle and peaceful according to Daniel Mapel in "Into the Heart of the Wild". Mapel suggests deer help us enhance our ability to change directions quickly without loosing our center. They deepen our awareness of the present moment.

Despite their reputation, deer are not "flighty" animals in my opinion. They don't spook at any little sound and take off but they are incredibly aware of everything around them. They are always paying attention, but in a relaxed and open way. When they hear a noise, rather than take off immediately, they stand still and access the situation it seems. That's why you find lots of pictures of deer looking directly into the camera. They check you out while you check them out. Often it seems they wait for you to make the first move. I guess maybe that's the "deer in the headlights" expression as well- they don't run right away, they measure distance and figure out which way they should be heading off to. Although this doesn't always work well with moving cars, it seems to suit situations in nature very well.

Perhaps our fascination with the deer rests in their sense of grace. They are beautiful to watch. They just look so trusting and open with those large clear eyes as they flick their ears and think about you. When they run they are all about grace and agility and can change direction multiple times within a few feet. They bounce through the air and reach great heights without seeming to put in any effort. When they do run, they don't keep running for a long distance. They just move to a safe enough place and then, without any concern for what was left behind ,they dip their heads and eat again, or reach up to the tree leaves, appearing totally relaxed. They don't even seem all that put out to have to move to a new dinner table on short notice. They seem to peacefully accept that although dinner may be interrupted, there's lots more where that came from.

I guess that's the type of attitude we could all use a bit more of. Mapel recommends the deer essence for those that are uptight, angry or stressed. He indicates it can be helpful for those who need to learn to travel their path with awareness and clarity, becoming more conscious to what is happening to them.

So if you're drawn to, or seeing deer in your life lately, perhaps the message they are sending is that it's time to stop and observe your actions for a moment before you leap to one choice or another. It's about slowing down with concentration and awareness so that when you do need to take action, it will be in the right direction and with clear and focused attention. Hmm... pretty sure I've heard that advice before!

The message from the deer seems to point to the Bach Flower essences Impatiens and Scleranthus- both essences that are personally very near and dear to my heart! 

Impatiens is indicated when you feel like nothing is happening quick enough and you want everything to be done instantly. If you've been following my blog, you're likely pretty familiar with Impatiens! If you want more posts on Impatiens type it into the search button and they will be listed. The positive aspects of Impatiens is a relaxed good-humored approach to others and the time it takes to do things right. It can help you cope calmly and diplomatically with perceived problems.

Scleranthus may help bring you that calm poise that deer have. It's about finding that moment to consider the options before heading off in one direction or the other. Scleranthus is recommended for indecision, and perhaps it gets to the real core of the issue. Indecision and uncertainty often arise when we aren't really aware of our feelings and in touch with our authentic self.  Once you take a moment to breathe deep, stop and "feel" versus "think", the choice may be very obvious. The positive aspect of Scleranthus is a calm balanced and poised ability to make good decisions.

Often Bach Flower essences work well in combination with each other. Remedies often contain between 4 to 6, sometimes up to 9 individual essences. Impatiens and Scleranthus together suggests a real slowing down approach in order to make good choices. It's about being focused and centered so you can take in the big picture, rather than using narrowed thought processes that lead to stress and impatience.

So if deer are appearing to you, maybe it really isn't just about them wanting you to plant more tulips our check out your garden. Maybe they are telling you to "chill", breathe in and breathe out.

Even with the help of Scleranthus and Impatiens, it can be difficult to sort out which essences are right for you. If you need some direction to get started, I can help.  Check out my website at or email me for a consultation.

In the meantime may the calm and peaceful nature of the deer be with you, and in you.


  1. I found my way to your blog while doing an internet search on Herons and loved your post ANIMAL SIGNS:THE HERON May 13, 2011 so much that I took a quick peak to see what else you had to offer...I am now a follower and will be back.