Part of the Sky Above Earth Below Oracle Deck I created in 2014. Mixed Media
Raccoon (Curiosity, Dexterity)
Raccoon scrounges for food. Raccoons are semi-nocturnal mammals, who appear mostly at night. They may also come out during twilight and even daylight hours. Raccoons are omnivores with a very diverse diet.They eat plants, bugs, and small even mammals; though they prefer easier prey, like eggs. The dark area of fur around a raccoon’s eyes is often called a mask. It may serve as an adaptation to reduce glare and improve night vision. The paws of a raccoon are hypersensitive, especially when wet, and so raccoons often seem to be ‘washing’ their food. Although raccoon’s have digits similar to apes they do not have an opposable thumb. Despite having no opposable thumb, raccoons still have a good amount of dexterity. Their ability to feel subtle differences with their paws makes them good at getting into things they might not otherwise be able to, like trash cans. It is common raccoon behaviour to stand on hind legs and inspect things with their sensitive front paws. This posture may have given rise to raccoon being seen as curious. Raccoons will often use the abandoned homes of other animals as their burrows using their intelligence to make sure the home has truly been deserted. Female raccoons may share common group areas, coming together to feed and sleep year round. Male raccoons will group together during mating season to protect their territory from outsiders but may not stay grouped once mating season is over.
During the fur trade raccoon pelts were frequently made into clothing; especially as the now iconic coonskin cap. In some Native American tribes raccoon is seen as a trickster who uses its dexterity to escape the situations it gets into. The Dakota tribe saw raccoon’s mask as ritualistic face paint and believed that raccoon had natural spirit power. The Aztecs saw female raccoons as possessing the same sort of abilities as the wise women of their own tribes. Because it has a mask the appearance of raccoon often linked it to mask making rituals; especially related to disguise, sorcery, and transformation. Because of their ability to get into places raccoon can often be seen as pests. Their mask, which makes them look like a burglar, has given rise to raccoon being seen as a bandit.
When raccoon scrounges its way into a reading it may be a good time to explore new things. What are you curious about? How can you use your dexterity to get you into or out of something? Are you hiding behind your mask, or using it for some nefarious/honourable purpose? Raccoon isn’t connected to any particular element but makes it’s home mostly in the woodlands biome.
Stars and Constellations
Disguise, Intuition, Skill, Explore, Clever