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How do you distinguish?
Seraphyna
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Post: #1
How do you distinguish?
How do you distinguish between an inner animal in the therian sense and a totem animal. I used to think that my tiger totem animal just had fun showing herself in my behaviors and such on occasion (as totems are want to do), but I feel like she's been coming out to play more and more often to the point where I'm no longer sure if she's simply a totem or not. So for all you weres out there and you people who just have totem animals...and you weres with totem animals...how do you distinguish between your totem and the part of you/your soul, energy, etc. that is animal/other?

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2008-03-29 0:56
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Post: #2
Re: How do you distinguish?
A totem is a seperate person entirely, or at least it is in my case.

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2008-03-29 1:03
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Post: #3
Re: How do you distinguish?
Personally, it's a difference between 'who' and 'what'. My totem animal (phoenix) is based on my personality, my aspirations, etc... the tiny things that make me who I am... which is different from what I am (angelic).

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2008-03-29 1:57
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RKCoon
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Post: #4
Re: How do you distinguish?
i agree. i cant say i have any totems, but i have seen how they work in others - they are separate spirits really i think, that come and go on their own will, while ones therian will ALWAYS be present and felt in someone, even if pushed away. further, that therian part will be a constant influence, weather its recognised or not.

i suppose i could compare it to a computer - a therian is the base hardware, whereas a totem could be considered a jump drive, removed at will. make sence?
2008-03-29 6:03
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Post: #5
Re: How do you distinguish?
Word usage aside, how do you discern by feeling? Here is how I tell the difference:

At any given time, I can choose to react to a situation however I wish. I can choose, if I want, to react in a very deep and lustful primal manner, some deep inner wolf or dragon inside me emerging, some feeling like I am not of this world, I am beast, I am insane...GRAWRRL!!!

I cannot do this with Raven. Raven feels different, the only time I have ever become Raven was when raven had something to teach me, personally, something that I would have only seen while looking at the world through Raven's mindset. I can't really choose to become a literal, primal Raven...but I CAN choose to use His teachings and aspects in my daily life (such as wit, intellect, cold observation.)

Raven is a totem. Raven feels to me like some higher entity, like a God of ravens or something. Or perhaps a collective entity fed upon by mankind's belief in the traits that a Raven might possess.
2008-03-29 7:14
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Post: #6
Re: How do you distinguish?
At any given time, anyone can react to any given situation however they chose at the time. This has nothing to do with otherkin or totems; it is the free will of humanity (society's laws aside.)

A totem is a symbol of the stereotypal animal. A person is meant to take on various personality traits of their animal because those traits already exist within that person. A dog is loyal, a beaver is hardworking, a cat is curious, etc. A person is required deep introspection, cracks in the prideful facade, and is expected to possess a totem that fits their human personality. One does not change into their totem, one is the totem. One does not own their totem. It is just a symbol to express the truest, unavoidable facets of their personality.

*shrugs*
Tai

"Will minus intellect constitutes vulgarity." -Arthur Schopenhauer


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2008-03-29 14:29
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Myenia
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Post: #7
Re: How do you distinguish?
The thing that confuses me about this is...

" but I feel like she's been coming out to play more and more often to the point where I'm no longer sure if she's simply a totem or not."

To me...that sounds like she was probably a totem before, but even more noticably a totem now. Maybe you'e got your definitions mixed up, because it sounds like you were implying that because she's come out more, it might be therianthropy. Therianthropes would'nt say 'she' when referring to themself...without being crazy, at least.
2008-03-31 4:05
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Post: #8
Re: How do you distinguish?
Myenia Wrote:Therianthropes would'nt say 'she' when referring to themself...without being crazy, at least.

Unless of course they were trying to clarify when they were referring to their animal side. I do this myself, as I find it's sometimes easier to say "my wolf side", when describing certain things about being a therianthrope. I'm not two entities in one body, but sometimes it's just easier to differentiate.

For the original question, I'm not sure how I tell the difference but some part of me knows that my therian side and my totem, despite being the same animal, are different. I generally only interact with my totem animal in meditation. That's not to say that I can't at any other time, but as a spirit entity my totem isn't tied to the physical world so she comes and goes as she pleases. My therianthropy is with me all the time. Think of an animal totem like a guardian angel; they help you, teach you and watch over you, but they're a separate entity from you. Being a therian is part of who I am and it's a part of my soul. Some people will tell you that totem animals change as a person does and that once the totem teaches what it needs to, it moves on. Therianthropy isn't like that. You either are, or you're not and there's no way to become a therian. There are methods to attract an animal totem.

Ultimately, you will have to be the one to figure out if you're a therian or if your totem animal is trying to teach you something. Sometimes we act like our totems because they want us to learn from their animal habits. Do some research on tigers and study their behaviours and see if you can apply anything to your daily life. Are you running from something? Perhaps tiger wants you to turn and fight. If after you've examined tiger and still can't figure out what she's trying to teach you, ask her in meditation. This was actually how I found out about my being a wolf, my wolf totem told me while in meditation and then everything fell into place.

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2008-03-31 13:11
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Post: #9
Re: How do you distinguish?
I, too, have a tiger totem. And even though I am an Elf, every so often I will take on the attributes of my totem.

But it's not a constant thing, so I know that I am not a therian.

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2008-04-01 7:00
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Post: #10
Re: How do you distinguish?
*ahem* out of curiosity, what are panther, fox, and cat totems for? >_> Just so I can make sure.
2008-04-01 14:29
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