Ravens have been associated by various cultures with different qualities. In popular western literature, they symbolize darkness, depression, and death as popularized in Edgar Allan Poe's poem, 'The Raven'. In medieval times they stood for virility. Among native cultures, Raven is the 'trickster' spirit, a popular totem, and the creator of man, who placed the Sun in the sky.
I went down to the Anchorage Boat Launch to take a break. It's always kind of quiet there during the winter, but things going on around the harbor that you can watch. There were over a dozen ravens playing in the thermals. Just floating around or chasing one another. Just serious play.
It started out as just a few then a few more flew in and before you knew we had a huge Unkindness, or was it a Constable or better yet, a Conspiracy.
BTW, our friend Clare of The House and Other Arctic Musings has written a fine essay on our feather friends the Raven called "In Praise of Ravens". You can find it at our friend Mike's place at 10000 Birds and if you have the time, compare it to the other essays and vote on which one you like best.