GIFTS: Innocence. Simplicity. Gentleness. Camouflage. Compassion. Community. Knowing when to stay and when to run. Sacrifice for the greater goof. Alertness and caution. Forgiveness.
CHALLENGES: “Deer in the headlights”—staying when you should run. So alert that you become anxious. Self-sacrificing to the point of martyrdom. So much “forgive and forget” that you get taken advantage of again.
Spirit Animal Deer is the epitome archetypal symbol of innocence and wonder. People looking for more “power” in their power animal may view Deer gifts as a weakness or reject Deer when it comes into their life. As with all spirit animals, Deer gifts come with challenges, but the primary gifts and messages offer a power and unique way to approach the world and your place in it.
Deer sees the world through the eyes of a child, with simplicity and innocence. I am reminded of the character North, in the animated film “Rise of the Guardians,” whose gift to the world is “a core of wonder.” For many people, the older we get, the more jaded we become, the more we reject Deer gifts, and the more we actually need Deer gifts.
Spirit Animal Deer teaches “safety in numbers,” camouflage and knowing when to run. Deer can be helpful in releasing the fears of inadequacy, vulnerability, worthlessness and missing out. Keeping things simple reminds you that you are always good enough. Complicated is not better. Innocence is not a weakness when you accept the strength of wonder.
Deer reminds you of your worth; though deer are “common” and “abundant” in number, they are loved and desired by all, whether for their meat or their beauty. And Deer shows how safety comes from being focused on the now. Drifting off into thoughts of the future makes you susceptible to danger.Earthfire Institute in Idaho] Deer also teaches resilience and vulnerability.
I communed with a lovely deer named Runs Like the Wind. He was found as a neonate on the side of the road, umbilical cord still attached, his dead mother lying nearby. Runs’ two front legs were broken, and his left front leg had to be amputated. In spite of having only three legs, he does indeed run like the wind.
Runs Like the Wind loves people and readily opens up to them. It is amazing to be in his presence and feel his openness and vulnerability in spite of his catastrophic entry into this world and into the world of humans. He truly embodies finding strength in your vulnerability, accepting what is and being resilient.