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Totem poles are more social than religious and share nothing in common with idols, are never worshiped and never figure in religious ceremonies. For the Tlingit, Haida, Tsimshian, Nisga'a, Gitksan, Kwakiutl and other people living along the wooded shores and rivers of the Pacific Northwest, totem poles embody their tribal, clan, family and individual identities, and serve as visible reminders of the past and the present. The symbols only serve as memory devices to recall a story–and the stories are very personal.

“Native Americans respect and honor the property right of a story. One could not sing a song which is the property of another nor dance his dance, nor tell his story.”

This Totem Pole is fresh–-it carries no history with it–it is there for your creative imagination to make up its story and make it your own. The figures on it are eagle, bear and beaver.

Traditionally stories start at the top.

After you are done weaving your tale, you can ritually “raise” the pole with a great social event called a Potlatch. The purpose of this party was to build up the reputation and social standing of the host. The erected pole would remain to give witness to the celebration that took place.

We suggest you create a new ritual –tell your story, hold your Totem Pole aloft and then share it with your friends.

Don’t leave a trace of a celebration, just get another Chocolate Totem Pole and do it again next week.

Carpe Diem!