Spirit Animal Dragon
Gifts: True fearlessness. Mastering all the elements. Balancing emotions, actions, vision and passion. Integration. Deep personal power. Wisdom. Magic.
Challenges: Lack of balance. Too much destructive energy, not enough constructive. Reckless fearlessness. Power to the point of authoritarianism.
As with Black Panther, Dragon’s powers are not freely given; they are earned. Having Dragon as a natural spirit animal does not automatically make you fearless, balanced, integrated, or wise. Dragon challenges you to practice, master and, thus, earn these powers.
Dragon can be an extremely difficult spirit animal to work with, especially if you doubt your power or lack the patience for mastery. Dragon does not make your path easier; it confronts and challenges you every step of the way. It is similar to the adage about asking God for patience and receiving an abundance of situations that try your patience. When you ask Dragon for help, be ready for obstacles.
Think of the mythical knight on a quest, perhaps to slay dragons. (No, you are not supposed to slay your spirit animal Dragon.) A quest is worthy of a knight only when it presents the knight with seemingly insurmountable obstacles and the risk of death. While Dragon represents true fearlessness, the knight represents true courage—facing fear and moving through it.
Your personal Dragon may represent any element, but archetypal Dragon has mastered all the elements. In mastering the physical elements, Dragon transcends the physical. The lesson for you is mastering the physical—not avoiding it in hopes of jumping straight to transcendence. Again we return to the mythical knight who experiences separation, loss, and pain. Transcendence is not avoidance. Rather, it comes only after fully experiencing.
Everything about Dragon is challenging! A particular challenge is avoiding a jack-of-all-trades mentality. When you imagine integrating, balancing, and mastering, it can be easy to believe that everything must be in equal parts, equal quality. Remember that some dragons are water dragons, some breathe fire, some live in caves, some fly. You can specialize in your strengths while still integrating seemingly disparate parts of yourself.
As you begin to master Dragon’s powers, be aware of the potential for using your power in an authoritarian way. Myths about dragons needing to be slain come from a fear that all power corrupts. “Power over” corrupts. “Power from within” never needs to corrupt.
If you are becoming authoritarian or if you are avoiding power for fear of being corrupted, examine your definition of power. Explore how you deny and reject your own personal power. True power radiates such self-possession that it inspires empowerment in others. In many ways, were it not for Dragon, there would be no need or room for the knight.