Spirit Animal Buffalo
Gifts: Generosity. Gratitude. Abundance. Migration. Being grounded. Knowing your worth.
Challenges: Self-sacrifice. Martyrdom. Worthlessness. So grounded that you can’t see beyond where you are.
Buffalo is a strong symbol of generosity, with Buffalo being known for willingly giving all of itself for the benefit of others. Buffalo teaches that you are the greatest gift you can give to another person. What other people need from you is simply for you to share who you really are. Letting others see and know the real you can be scary. You may hide behind the fears of worthlessness, inadequacy, or vulnerability. But Buffalo knows its own worth. Buffalo knows it is good enough as it is. And Buffalo finds strength in its vulnerability.
Buffalo’s gifts of abundance, gratitude, and migration are closely connected. Physical buffaloes make small migrations on a daily basis, eating grass in one area for a few hours, then moving on to another area of abundant grass when they have depleted the first area. Without migrating, Buffalo would not see abundance, but rather depletion, scarcity, and lack.
The lesson for you is more metaphorical: Follow your gut. When you sense lack where you are, Buffalo teaches you not to wait around wishing it to be different. Make the changes you need to make in order to find or create the abundance you seek. Sometimes the grass actually is greener on the other side—especially if you’ve run out of grass where you are.
Buffalo teaches that gratitude does not come from abundance, rather abundance comes from gratitude. This is not an excuse to give thanks without taking action. Wishful thinking does not create abundance. Rather, you generate a sense of abundance by feeling gratitude for what is, for what you have, for what you are, and then taking action on what you want.
Having Buffalo as your spirit animal makes you susceptible to slipping into self-sacrifice and martyrdom. While grounded Buffalo energy knows its worth, too much or too little Buffalo energy can succumb to the fear of being worthless. You give of yourself so much that you forget to take care of yourself. You have a hard time saying “no,” believing instead that you absolutely have to be there for anyone who asks for your help.
Buffalo’s groundedness can turn into a stubborn lack of vision, being so grounded that you can’t see beyond where you are. This is related to the wishful thinking aspect of abundance—when you mistakenly believe that you can will abundance into existence even though the truth is that it’s time to move on. On the other hand, unbalanced Buffalo energy can lead to impatience, believing that the grass is always greener on the other side. This can result in moving on too soon, before you are really done where you are.