Be more Badger ~ calling afresh on an old ally

Be more Badger ~ calling afresh on an old ally

A few nights ago, I caught the end of a nature programme I’d seen before, “Honey Badgers: Masters of Mayhem” and I had an enjoyable twenty minutes watching the antics of captive honey badger Stoffle (he was hand reared, I believe because he was found injured as a baby and couldn’t be returned to the wild). It reminded me of my ties to Badger medicine.

My first proper job after I graduated was in nature conservation, working in the capacity of education officer on an SSSI reserve in the north east of England. One of the many wonderful aspects of my job was the badgers. We had several colonies of them and one sett was perfect for badger watching. Dug into the sides of steep yew woodland, the sett had many entrances and it was possibly for us to scramble down at nightfall and sit among the tree roots and watch the badgers. I’ve written more about it in a post from some years ago. https://zenandtheartoftightropewalking.wordpress.com/2010/05/01/badgers-bums/

The European badger is a more reserved beast than the South African honey badger but it shares powerful characteristics. Tenacity, strength, connection to roots are all part of its medicine. According to my usual favourite site on such matters http://www.animalspirits.com/index8.html , the badger is:

Keeper of stories, Bold self-expression, Aggressiveness, Single-mindedness, Passion, Cunning, Revenge, Perseverance, Control, Antidote to passivity or victimization, Persistence in the service of a mission, Groundedness, Knowledge of the earth, Earth magick and wisdom, Creative action in a crisis, Protection of rights and spiritual ideas.

 

One thing it doesn’t mention is the fact that the European badger has the thickest skin of any mammal native to Britain. This means that not only is it able to avoid the kind of injuries creatures with thinner skin might get, it can also move within its skin if pinned or held down in a fight. This gives greater manoeuvrability in conflict.

They also head deep underground during the winter, not to hibernate as such but to go into energy conservation mode, sleeping and dreaming the winter away. Who knows what their dreams are?

 

I need more of the badger attributes. And I need a thicker skin. I shall Be More Badger.

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12 thoughts on “Be more Badger ~ calling afresh on an old ally

  1. Say ‘Badger’ to me and my first thought is ‘Wind in the Willlows’! I’ve a feeling I’m getting rather like him in my old age…

  2. I stumbled upon this through a friend’s blog, and am glad I did. I love this post. I’ve seen that same show — poor Stoffle. He just could never make the escape work, but he was very persistent. I do like the “regular” badgers quite a lot, in terms of woodland creatures. I’m adding “be more badger” to my list of aspirations.

  3. Tee hee – as you know, my Old Feller is always known as Badger, just as I am Otter. I exploded with laughter when you said “thickest skin of any animal” because that is true – mind so are some of the good points. I have to admit that, like his namesakes, once he digs his back claws in on any point he will NOT be moved (whether he is right or not) but I agree that Badger medecine is powerful. Surprisingly caring for their family, nurturing of wearker ones too.

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