Turtle: nurturer, protector, mother energy
Many Natives refer to North America as Turtle Island, because their legends say that when the earth was covered with water, Turtle dove to the bottom of the oceans bringing up earth on its back so that the people could have a safe and dry home. Turtle is at home anywhere because it carries its home on its back. It does not become attached to places, for it is free to search for new opportunities wherever they may be found. When they sense danger, or are in uncomfortable and insecure settings, they withdraw into their shell, and are protected. If you have Turtle medicine, you value both the power of the earth, the waters of the earth, and the magic of the heavens, for Turtle symbolizes both the grounding quality of earth energy, and the magic of the mystical.
Since the dawn of tattooing, people have been marking themselves with the signs of their totem animals. On the outer level of meaning, they are trying to gain the strengths and abilities of the totem animal. On a more inner and mystical level, totem animals mean that the bearer has a close and mysterious relationship with this animal spirit as his guardian.