Dr. Steven Farmer: Listening to Our Animal Spirit Guides - P1/2    
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Hallo, enlightened viewers, and welcome to Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants. Have you ever wondered why a raccoon unexpectedly crosses your path? Or why a crow suddenly lands on your balcony?

On today’s program, we present the first in a two-part interview with American author, retired psychotherapist, spiritual teacher, and shaman Dr. Steven Farmer, who will discuss such questions and provide answers based on his years of experience with animals. Author of the bestselling books “Earth Magic,” and “Sacred Ceremony,” Dr. Farmer also hosts a weekly radio program called Earth Magic Radio. The term “shamanism” includes a wide range of practices used to communicate with the world beyond physical appearances. How did Dr. Farmer become interested in shamanism?

I spent many years as a psychotherapist, and I would say an unusual psychotherapist, knowing quite a few of my colleagues, and I really began to be curious about spirituality and how that fit into psychotherapy. And then about 20 years ago, I was introduced to shamanism. I’d sampled different spiritual paths, different religions, throughout my life and I’d always been curious about them in many ways and really was trying to, like I think many people do, find the right path.

And I did a two-day course on core shamanism and I went, “This is home.” “This is where I belong.” And I do believe it’s in my DNA somehow, an ancestral connection. And so, for a period of time I was very careful and ethical about how I would employ that in my practice in psychotherapy, but certainly some of the principles of shamanism kind of seeped into the work that I would do with people, and I had a very, very successful practice.

It was through his study of shamanism that Dr. Farmer came to believe that it is essential to re-connect with animal guides and Mother Earth. He writes about this his book, “Earth Magic.”

“Earth Magic,” it’s the name of my latest book. It has become more of an umbrella for the work that I do. So, “Earth Magic” really is the idea that the world is magical. I remember a book years ago called, “The Re-Enchantment of the World,” by Bruno Bettelheim. I love that title, and in a sense that’s what we’re talking about. Enchantment is from “chanson,” a French word which means “to sing.” So one version would be to really “sing the world” or to listen to the song the world has to sing to us. And that re-enchantment is part of the magic.

According to Dr. Farmer, animals are here to help us in life. The elephant, with his imposing power and strength, reminds us that we can overcome all obstacles. The swan’s message is that we’re beautiful just as we are. If we think our life is too serious, we can call on the spirit of the dolphin to develop playfulness or better communication skills. And the hummingbird is here to cheer us up and bring us joy.

I have a little hummingbird that comes into the backyard. I heard her name is Heather, so I call her Heather the hummingbird. And she comes and floats around one of the trees, it’s just starting to blossom here in the late fall, early winter. And I swear the last couple of days, she’d be sitting on that branch and I’d be just looking at her, and we’d be in communion. And to me, that’s magic. Or stories I’ve heard, speaking of hummingbirds, where hummingbirds will come, and flutter right in front of your face.

So it’s to reawaken that deep, relatively unconscious memory of our relationship with the natural world. It’s more the experience of the magic, that we are just part of the web of life here on the Earth, this big hunk of rock that’s floating through space in this vast universe, and we have the privilege of actually existing on this planet at this time. So, let’s wake up, and just really enjoy the beauty and the majesty of this planet as we go through these Earth changes that are occurring.

Animals may come to us to deliver specific messages, but we must closely observe the circumstances to understand what they’re telling us.

When I see an animal here, especially in an unusual way or through repetition, there’s some significance that we can go into about that. And it doesn’t have to be the physical animal. Like here in Laguna Beach (California), we do not see a lot of bears around here. But the bear spirit can show himself through symbols. You have a dream about a bear, and you wake up and you go, “Wow, that’s pretty weird.” And then all day long you’re thinking about that dream. And then you go to the supermarket, you hear somebody talking about bears. You turn on the TV and there’s a show on bears. There’s something pretty significant happening at that point.

For many years Dr. Farmer’s “power animals,” the raven, the wolf, the snake and the owl, have been assisting him in his work.

Raven’s a magician, and it’s perfectly in alignment with what we were talking about earlier about Earth Magic. There’re a lot of different creation stories where the Raven is the one responsible for bringing from the darkness into the light, that which is created and what we see before us in the physical world. So he’s very creative, a great manifester, which is true about me too. With the help of my spirit guides I’m very, very good at manifesting.

Another one is Wolf. Wolf’s spirit has been with me quite a few years. Wolf is a great teacher and is an astounding protector. I’ve asked Wolf to be here with us today just to keep us all safe and protected. I like having him around because he can provide a bubble of protection if you will, a psychic protection. He’s also a teacher, incredibly loyal, dedicated.

Third one is Snake, Snake Spirit, who’s been with me the longest. The other one is the Owl. Owl has been with me quite a while too. Owl was a more primary power animal when I was a psychotherapist. One of the gifts of Owl is to see into the shadows, to be able to see what other people don’t see, to be able to see those shadows in myself that I may or may not be aware of. And that was the gift of Owl.

Turtle is yet another animal who has transformed Dr. Farmer’s life.

Turtle has just been showing up a lot lately. And, I mean amazingly so. Now I refer back to an earlier book that was published about seven, eight years ago, the “Power Animals” book. And in there, Turtle gave me a message to convey. And I’ve got to tell you exactly how he said it. And this is how he sounded in my inner voice. I would sit at the computer and wait for the message. And I said, “Turtle Spirit, give me the message.” What message do you want me to convey to others through this work? And I took a breath and here’s what I heard, exactly like this: “Slow down, you’ve got all the time in the world.”

The next day we went to an animal sanctuary. It is on the Big Island in Hawaii, the Big Island of Hawaii near Kona. And guess what was there? Land turtles or tortoises. We went down to go swimming and of course it’s not unusual, in itself, but there were some sea turtles there.

And Turtle showed up the other day. I was sitting at the breakfast table and my stepdaughter Serena, eight years old says, “Steven, I’ve got some new earrings.” I said, “Oh, great! What are they? Show them to me.” Guess what they were? Turtles. I mean, again and again and again Turtle has showed up. When I feel myself speeding up too much, I’ll hear, “Slow down. It’s okay. You’ll get there, Tortoise and the Hare.”

And I swear I get everything done that I need to get done. In fact, if anything, I think I’ve been more productive since Turtle has been inhabiting my consciousness. When an animal shows up in an unusual way or repeatedly or both, that animal is another expression of God or Spirit or Great Spirit, Source, whatever you want to call that force. God’s okay with me, God and Spirit I use interchangeably.

Hummingbird grand central sends you a hummingbird and then suddenly you get a smile on your face and you cheer up. How could you not smile with that little being that’s doing this at 120 beats per second. I believe sincerely that Spirit is wanting to help us human beings. You know, we need it. We need it right now.

Also a talented musician, Dr. Farmer both composes and sings songs as another powerful way to convey his message of peace. He now performs one of his songs, “Breathe Again,” co-written by Martin Jordan.

I hold my fist tight and my teeth are sinking into my skin.
My eyes are aching, and I’m feeling forsaken, don’t want to let it in.
There’s nowhere to run and nowhere to hide.
You can always conquer you can never divide,
Every moment you’re young, you can never grow old.
Please take me back to the truth of my soul,
So I can breathe again. I wanna breathe again.
Everything changes, nothing is written in stone.
You never have to go it alone.
I hold out my hands for all to see.
I shout to the heavens please set me free,
So I can breathe again. I wanna breathe again.

Does everyone on Earth have an animal spirit guide? What’s the best way to become one with nature? To find out the answers to these and other questions, please join us again tomorrow on Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants for the concluding part of our fascinating interview with Dr. Steven Farmer.

For more information on Dr. Steven Farmer including how to listen to his radio show, please visit
“Earth Magic” and Dr. Farmer’s other books and publications are available at the same website

Thank you for watching today’s program. May we forever respect, protect and love our animal friends.
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