There is a medicine story that tells of Crow’s fascination with her own shadow. She kept looking at it, scratching it, pecking at it, until her shadow woke up and became alive. Then Crow’s shadow ate her. Crow is Dead Crow now. Dead Crow is the Left-Handed Guarding. If you look deeply into Crow’s eye, you will have found the gateway to the supernatural. Crow knows the unknowable mysteries of creation and is the keeper of all sacred law.
Since Crow is the keeper of sacred law, Crow can bend the laws of the physical universe and “shape shift.” This ability is rare and unique. Few adepts exist in today’s world, and fewer still have mastered Crow’s art of shape shifting. This art includes doubling, or being in two places at one time consciously; taking on another physical form, and becoming the “fly on the wall” to observe what is happening far away.
The Europeans that came to Turtle Island were named the “boat people” by Slow Turtle. Even with the knowledge of alchemy possessed by certain boat people, none had ever seen the powerful shape shifting of shamans who utilized Crow medicine. Many boat people were frightened by what appeared to be animals coming into their camps or dwellings to discern their medicine. Crow medicine people are masters of illusion.
All sacred texts are under the protection of Crow. Creator’s Book of Laws or Book of Seals is bound in Crow feathers. Crow feathers tell of spirit made flesh. Crow is also the protector of the “ogallah” or ancient records. The Sacred Law Belts, or Wampum Belts, beaded by native women long before the boat people or Europeans came to this continent, contain knowledge of the Great Spirit’s laws, and are kept in the Black Lodges, the lodges of women. Crow signifies the law, which states, “all things are born of women”.
Children are taught to behave according to the rules of a particular culture. Most orthodox religious systems create a mandate concerning acceptable behavior within the context of worldly affairs. Do this and so, and you will go to heaven. Do thus and so, and you will go to hell. Different formulas for salvation are demanded by each “true faith.” Human law is not the same as Sacred Law. More so than any other medicine, Crow sees that the physical world and even the spiritual world, as humanity interprets them, are an illusion. There are billions of worlds. There is infinitude of creatures. Great Spirit is with all. If an individual obeys Crow’s perfect laws as given by the Creator, then at death, he or she dies a Good Medicine death – going on to the next incarnation with a clear memory of his or her past Crow is an omen of change. Crow lives in the void and has no sense of time. The Ancient Chiefs tell us that Crow sees simultaneously the three fates – past, present, and future. Crow merges light and darkness, seeing both inner and outer reality.
If Crow medicine appears in your card spread, you must pause and reflect on how you see the laws of the Great Spirit in relation to the laws of humanity. Crow medicine signifies a firsthand knowledge of a higher order of right and wrong than that indicated by the laws created in human culture. With Crow medicine, you speak in a powerful voice when addressing issues that for you seem out of harmony, out of balance, out of whack, or unjust.
Remember that Crow looks at the world with first one eye, and then the other cross-eyed. In the Mayan culture, cross-eyed had the privilege and duty of looking into the future. You must put aside your fear of being a voice in the wilderness and “caw” the shots as you see them.
As you learn to allow your personal integrity to be your guide, your sense of feeling alone will vanish. Your personal will can then emerge so that you will stand in your truth. The prime path of true Crow people says to be mindful of your opinions and actions. Be willing to walk your talk, speak your truth, know your life’s mission, and balance past, present, and future in the now. Shape shifts that old reality and become your future self. Allow the bending of physical laws to aid in creating the shape-shifted world of peace.
So you are an outlaw today, eh? This is one of the varied messages of Crow reversed. The rebel in you has given a yell, and all hell is about to break loose!
A word to the wise at this point: make sure that if you are stepping on toes, you have some back up. The catalyst for a barroom brawl is usually the person with two black eyes. That is what it means to eat Crow.
If you do not plan to go to such extremes, Crow reversed may indicate that you are merely “cheating a little” on your diet, or covertly watching the neighbors have a spat, or thinking, “Promises are made to be broken.” In any of these situations, the only loser is you. If you are lying to yourself on any level, you have lost the power of Crow. Think about it, and maybe your inner truth will come to you.
In seeing what is true, you may need to weed out past beliefs or ideas to bring yourself into the present moment. Contrary Crow speaks of needing to remember that Divine Law is not judgment or denial of self-truths. Divine Law is honoring harmony that comes from a peaceful mind, an open heart, a true tongue, a light step, a forgiving nature, and a love of all living creatures. Honor the past as your teacher, honor the present as your creation, and honor the future as your inspiration. Refusing to honor the shifts in your reality can cause emotional pain. An implosion of energy is apparent when rebellion surfaces. Contrary Crow speaks of broken law. The law of expansion is broken by suppression. This may apply to a situation, an old habit, a person you have given your authority to, or your own fears. It is always your own creation, so call on Crow and shift that creation to your new reality
Excerpt from “Medicine Cards” by Jamie Sams & David Carson