Page 13

(Main Links of the site are right at the bottom of the page)

The 27 pages in this Symbol section are below

Spiritual Element of Trees
Written by Lotus © July 29th, 2004

Yew in England

To be one with the trees is to know Life within your own spirit - Chief Sequoia

In lush valleys and forests, where majestic Guardians stand tall, their awesome beauty a reminder of ancient settlements, the mystical realm of "Standing People" communicate a language and await our arrival. Perhaps because of their constant presence we take them for granted. Trees, however, are a vital and nurturing force representing the fabric of all communities providing us with nourishment, a constant source of medicine, and the very air we breathe is improved by their presence.

Trees hold a special significance as both practical providers and powerful spiritual presences and have witnessed life on earth over large expanses of time. Spirit breathes aliveness into their mystical individuality. These magnificent "Guardians" belong to the Earth Element and are ruled by Gabriel. In many cultures a tree symbolizes the world center, where heaven and earth touch, where all times and places converge. For this reason trees are considered sacred and provide a focal point for meditation, enlightenment, guidance and prayer and if we are open to their energy, will converse with us.

Jeffrey Goelitz writes: "The purest essence comes from the oldest trees who have peaked developmentally in their being-ness. Older trees communicate to younger trees a vibrancy that supports and encourages their growth. There is an intelligence on the other side from which life springs. The force of gravity helps us to live. Through gravity we receive light from the sky. Gravity is the bridge to the other world where earth connects to the sky. Trees act like magnetic funnels. Through their centers they draw heavily on the light. [The Mother of the Forest and I] have a deep resonance of peace. Our ages, sizes, and electromagnetic fields are very much alike. Together, along with other elder redwoods, we watch over the forest with our etheric radiation. Our rays interlace together in a way distinct from other trees because of our similarities."

Tree of Resurrection Symbolic of Protection and Oracular Powers Alders are members of the Birch family found along lowland rivers, growing with Aspens, Poplars, and Willows. The Alder is a most unusual tree, loving water yet extremely flammable making the Alder, a revered tree, as it combines the elements of water and fire. In folklore the Alder is known as the "King of the Water" with the "Willow" tree as its Queen. This association is due to their natural habitat near lakes, rivers and streams. The Alder is the bridge between water and fire, sea and land, winter and spring. The wood of the Alder has many uses. When young it is brittle and pliable, easily worked but as the tree ages, its wood becomes tinted and veined. Due to the Alders resistance to water, in times gone by it was used in the construction of bridges and though it may surprise you, bridges erected centuries ago remain standing and continue to be a means of transportation today.

In Celtic folklore it was believed that doorways to the fairy realm were concealed within the Alder's trunk. The Alder was sacred to the god "Bran" who is said to have created a bridge to span the dangerous waters from this world to the other … the chosen wood, "ALDER." An old Celtic legend speaks of "Bran" carrying a branch from the Alder tree during the "Battle of the Trees." Bran's totem animal was the Raven who also became associated with the Alder. Ritual pipes and whistles were often made from Alder wood, many in the shape of the Raven. Folklore also tells us, cutting down an Alder invited trouble as it invoked the anger of the tree spirit who would use fire to burn down the lumberjack's house and his village would be cursed. "I am guarded by very protective Faeries who surround and shelter me and when they leave take the form of a Raven. From the time of "Theophrastus," the Greek philosopher, the bark of young Alder shoots have been used for dyeing and tanning leather. The next time you see an Alder overhanging some stream or a bed of flowers, look beneath its thrusting boughs of rustling leaves. You may get a glimpse of the "Faeries," hiding in the wedge-shaped bark structure. Ponder the possibilities and consider what nature can teach you about life … let Spirit guide you.

Tree of Clairvoyance Symbolic of an "Awakening," a stirring of Spirit Almond trees were growing in Israel, (Canaan), 2000 years ago and were mentioned in ancient Hebrew scripture, (Genesis 43-11, etc.). Moses crafted oil lamps in the image of an almond, and Van Gogh thought that blooming Almond trees were so beautiful that he created more than a dozen paintings of almonds in full flower. In ancient societies, the Almond tree was valued for its supposed virtue in preventing intoxication and in Shakespearean times decorated many London gardens and orchards.

The Almond grows freely in Syria and Palestine and is mentioned in the Scriptures as one of the best fruit trees of the land of Canaan. The Hebrew name, "SHAKAD," is very expressive for it signifies "hasty awakening,"' or "to watch for," hence, to make haste, a fitting name for a tree, whose beautiful flowers appearing in Palestine in January, herald the wakening of Creation. Come celebrate your life. Let the Spirit of the Almond tree be a conduit to put you in a reflective mood. Remember you are the one who holds the power, the key … to unlock the door. Discover within yourself the answers to what you seek. Nature is simply providing a place of pilgrimage.

Tree of Custodian Wisdom Symbolic of the East, spring, the dawn and new beginnings The profusion of perfumed blossoms occurs in spring and a feast for arousing the sensual sense of smell. If you peek beyond the delicately blushing, rosy and white-streaked, buds of the Apple tree don't be surprised to find Unicorns playing hide-and-seek. Over centuries, many apple myths have come to light, from the apple Adam and Eve ate to the Norsemen who use to bury their dead with an apple serving as a resurrection charm. But perhaps
what lingers most in our minds is the ripe apple falling to the ground, a story we have all heard, reminding us in its fall of Newton and the discovery of gravitation.

Sit beneath the shade of an Apple tree's splendor and let it speak to you. Allow yourself to move into a highly elevated state of being, visualizing the untapped force around you. You can use it to restore yourself. Be aware of thoughts and feelings dispersing and of the energy and light cursing through each part of your body. Hold this point of balance, the point between two world … experience the mystery … the gate is open wide.

Tree of Depth and Integrity Symbolic of protection and safety Canada's only native broadleaf evergreen tree (known as Madrone in the US) is a wonderful metaphor for the spirit. In early morning or evening sunlight, this magnificent tree emits ancient energy, as it's auburn boughs reach toward the dappled light filtering through the tight canopy of thick, leathery foliage.

I am an Evergreen without needles, the only deciduous tree that does not lose its leaves in winter! In the early spring bountiful white blossoms make me even more spectacular. During summer months, my reddish brown bark sheds its skin and underneath the younger yellowish green wood will turn a deep mahogany red during the winter months. In the fall my beautiful clusters of orange red berries feed the birds and deer. The energy surrounding me is powerful. Be still and attune to me, I can help you decipher the meaning of it all.

Aboriginal people revere the Arbutus. According to a Salish legend, the survivors of a great flood tied their canoe to an Arbutus atop Mount Newton near Sidney. B.C. To this day, as a mark of gratitude, the Salish won't use Arbutus as firewood. Poet Richard Olafson shares another Native legend, writing, "The tree's webbed roots hold the splintered earth together."

If the Arbutus should disappear, the myth warns-whether from fungal infection, habitat loss or some other cause, manmade or otherwise, the planet would fly apart and be utterly destroyed. When you sit beside me, dirt beneath you and the wind blowing in your face, you are keeping company with an "Old One," and I can help open many spiritual doors for you. If you are feeling somewhat barren, immerse yourself in the flow of Spirit, letting love soulfully touch your heart. Receive easily and graciously believing you are a channel of grace.

Tree of Humankind and Ancestors Symbolic of the "Bridge" connecting the Spiritual and Physical realm From my roots flow two limpid streams, that of the knowledge of things past and that of the knowledge of things to come. In Norse mythology, Yggdrasil ("The Terrible One's Horse"), also called the "World Tree," is the giant ash tree that links and shelters all the worlds. Beneath the three roots the realms of Asgard, Jotunheim and Niflheim are located where three wells lie at its base, the "Well of Wisdom," the "Well of Fate" and the "Source of Many Rivers." Four deer run across the branches of the tree and eat the buds; they represent the Four Winds. There are other inhabitants of the tree, a golden @#%$ rests on the summit observing all that
passes in the Universe, a squirrel named Ratatosk, (Swift Teeth) a notorious gossip constantly ascends and descends carrying messages between the golden @#%$ that perches on the topmost bough and "Nidhogg," the serpent.

Legend says, on the day of Ragnarok, "Doom of the Gods," the Fire Giant, Surt, will set the tree on fire, never to be seen again. In the midst of the Ash tree's splendor recall your tender nature, and make peace with unresolved issues. If you can see the beauty of the world, in harmony and with deep appreciation, you will notice a warm feeling that is hard to put into words. Rejoice in this new perspective. Be attentive, open and reverent allowing yourself to be re-enchanted with the world.

Tree of Loyalty and Harmony Symbolic of the "Voice of Spirit" The Aspen, considered part of the poplar family, has a habit of shimmering or quivering in the breeze making a distinctive rustling, whispering sound. In several native languages, the name "Trembling Aspen" translates as "woman's tongue" or "noisy leaf." The Aspen's root is rarely killed during a fire, and Aspens are generally the first trees to grow in a burned out area. Aspen wood is very lightweight when dried, becoming very buoyant and was therefore a popular choice for oars and paddles also was used to make arrows in medieval times. In many cultures and religions the wind is associated with the "Voice of Spirit," and in the boughs and leaves of the Aspen, the wind finds a distinctive voice to inspire those who would listen with patience and sensitivity.

The movement of the wind through the canopy and the sun dappling through the leaves can have a mesmerizing effect, encouraging a contemplative and meditative frame of mind. Like the hero and shaman who stand apart from the crowd, the Aspen's sparse distribution often away from other trees, and its magical connotations has "done much over the years to facilitate legends of people disappearing from under it into the land of Faerie." ("Tree Wisdom" by Jacqueline Paterson 1996)

Bring your drum, flute or your favorite musical instrument and sit under the Aspen's canopy. Plunge deep into your soul letting your mind drift into nothingness. Open wide your arms, let the music shower you with pulsating radiance. Focus on the sounds, and listen to the rhythm of nature calling. Become one with the melody as it fills you. When you are ready, open your eyes and play your Spirit Song. There is always light in the darkness. Value your creativity and your connection with the Universe.

Tree of Fertility & Protection Symbolic of renewal, and purification The word birch is thought to have derived from the Sanskrit word “bhurga” meaning a “tree whose bark is used to write upon”. When the poet S.T. Coleridge called the birch, “Lady of the Woods,” he was possibly drawing on an existing folk term for the tree. Its birch twigs were used to bestow fertility on newlyweds and cattle. Nearly every part of it is edible, and its sap was an important source of sugar to Native Tribes and early settlers.

Ojibway Legend: Winabojo and the Birch Tree.
Once there was a spirit-boy named Winabojo who taught the Ojibwa how to live in the natural world. One day Winabojo went searching for feathers for his arrows. He climbed to the highest cliff and discovered a nest of the Thunderbirds and saw their babies. Winabojo turned into a rabbit so the Thunderbirds would bring him to their nest for their babies to play with. Winnabojo stayed in the nest for a long time; the babies were cruel to him and tossed him around. Eventually Thunderbirds went away to hunt for more food for their babies. Winabojo turned back to a boy; he clubbed the baby Thunderbirds and pulled out their feathers. Before the parents could return, Winabojo jumped from the high nest with the bundle of feathers and was knocked out, but not killed because he was a “manido.” When they returned to their nest, the angered Thunderbirds flew after Winabojo!! Thunder rolled from their beaks and lightning flashed from their eyes. Winabojo ran for his life clutching his bundle of feathers, but soon grew so tired he began to fear he would be caught. As the Thunderbirds reached for him with their claws, Winabojo saw an old fallen birch that was hollow inside. He crept into the hollow in the nick of time. The Thunderbirds ended their attack because they knew they could not reach Winabojo through the birch bark. Winabojo was safe. After the Thunderbirds left, Winabojo came out and proclaimed that the birch tree would forever protect and benefit the human race. You can still see the short marks on the birch tree made by Winabojo to commemorate the sharp claws of the Thunderbirds who almost killed him. The Thunderbird parents put "pictures" of their baby birds with out-stretched wings into the birch bark so the sacrifice of their children would always be remembered. Winabojo fixed his arrows and went home. With these arrows he was able to kill the great fish that lived under the rock ledge. Winabojo has blessed the birch tree for the good of the human race. And this is why lightning never strikes the birch tree, and why anything wrapped in the bark will not decay. Birch bark is useful for house coverings, canoes, containers, utensils, and in many other ways.
[adapted from “The Legend of Winabojo and the Birch Tree ~ How Indians Use Wild Plants for Food, Medicine and Crafts”]
Author ~ Frances Densmore

Walk your path with truth and honor remembering talk is cheap. It is actions and behaviors that determine integrity. The Source by whatever “Name” you call it longs to flow through you. Be receptive! Gently close your eyes for a minute. Leisurely wander through some of your blissful moments creating a strand of each memory. Weave the strand together, taking into your heart. Carry it with you throughout each day that you may add new memories to the strand.

Tree of Destiny Symbolic of “fate” and the influences it has on destiny In ancient times, the Blackthorn was commonly used in healing remedies and magical potions. The “Blackthorn” tree grows in dense thickets and is barked with vicious thorns, the very thorns believed to have adorned the crown Jesus wore. Thought to be a tree of fidelity and independence, in Irish folklore the Blackthorn was both a source of fear and good fortune. Guarded by “Lunatasidhe” a small hairless faerie resembling a balding old man, the “little
people” are said to haunt Blackthorn groves in groups. Though I am barked with fierce prickles, you are welcome to rest a spell. Slow down and look around. Notice the colors and light playing with the shadows. Walk around and savor the fragrance of wild flowers, slowly and deeply. Still the busy-ness of your mind and listen to twigs cracking under your feet, the leaves rustling in the breeze, the birds singing, and the soft beating of your heart. Let yourself be tuned to nature’s call. Let this be a place of return, a safe haven, your quiet abode to nurture your spirit whenever the need arises.

Tree of Wisdom The symbolism of the Bodhi Tree comes from the story of the Buddha, who during the first week after Enlightenment, sat under the bodhi tree experiencing the happiness of freedom and peace. He was free from disturbing thoughts, calm and blissful. Sometime during the sixth century BC a solitary, wandering ascetic sat to meditate beneath a shady tree, resolving not to rise until he had attained the ultimate knowledge of spiritual enlightenment, he was born Prince Gautama Siddhartha. Gautama was the son of King Suddhodana raised in great luxury. Following the ancient traditions of Hinduism, Gautama sought out spiritual teachers, or gurus. Inquiring of their knowledge, he diligently practiced various yogas and meditations. Seven years passed, the last three in extreme asceticism, yet still he had not achieved his goal of enlightenment.

He was inspired to leave his princely lifestyle behind and devote himself to penetrating the mystery of human suffering. For several years, he traveled through India as a mendicant holy man, but ended in disillusion. Finally recognizing that such practices had served him well but were no longer appropriate, he journeyed toward the ancient sacred forests of Uruvela in north India with the intention of completely realizing the infinite. Guided by visionary dreams and following in the footsteps of Krakucchanda, Kanakamuni, and Kasyapa, the Buddhas of three previous ages, Siddhartha sat beneath the Bodhi Tree making a pact to stay there until he had realized his quest. Touching the earth, thereby calling it to witness the countless lifetimes of virtue that had led him to this place of enlightenment, he entered into a state of deep meditation. Three days and nights passed and his intention was realized. Gautama spent the next seven weeks in meditation near the Bodhi Tree. When he emerged from under the tree, he believed he had found the secret of enlightenment (Buddha means "enlightened" or "awakened" in Pali), and he gave over the rest of his life to teaching all who would listen. Then, at the request of the god Indra, he began to speak of the great truth he had realized. His first sermon was given at Isipatana (modern Sarnath near Banaras). This first discourse, often called "Setting in Motion of the Wheel of Truth" presented the Four Noble Truths and the Noble Eightfold Path for which Buddhism is so famous. Within itself, the mind is timeless, peaceful, unmoving. Rest in this natural state. If the changing sense impressions cause the mind to forget itself, to be deceived and entangled, your practice is to see this whole process and simply return to the original mind. –© Jack Kornfield

Tree of Astral Travel Symbolic of lucid dreams and flight Also known as Scotch Broom or Irish Broom, grows in open spaces. According to the Celtic Zodiac, the reed or the broom is the tree sacred to the twelfth moon of the year starting on October 28th and ending on November 24th. This tree is useful in "cleaning up" spiritual or mental messes and was used to sweep outside ritual areas for purification and protection. The Irish called “Broom” the "Physician's power" because of its diuretic shoots. Burning the blooms and shoots calms the wind. In the Language of Flowers, Broom signifies neatness or humility. The neatness is obvious for a broom-plant. Today, the twigs and branches are serviceable not only for making brooms, but are also used in basket weaving especially in the island of Madeira. A wise heart knows some are sensitive “empaths” absorbing energy like a sponge. If you find yourself picking up unwanted vibrations, just as the broom is used for sweeping, rid yourself of emotional and mental debris by stepping into a pink bubble. It will absorb and sweep away all negative thought forms finding the balance that is right for you and leaving you feeling refreshed.

Tree of Sacred Bark The Cascara’s symbolism revolves around the digestive tract. Traditionally, the bark of the Cascara tree was one of the most effective laxatives and Coastal people also knew it as a tonic. The Cherokee used cascara not only as a treatment for stomach upset but also as a remedy for itching and eye infections. Seventeenth-century Spanish and Mexican explorers gave the member of the Buckthorn family, its name, which means “Sacred Bark.” Today cascara is still gathered in the forests of the Pacific Northwest and marketed in liquids, pills and powder form. The Nuu-chah-nulth people used the wood of the Cascara tree to make chisel handles, and the Skagit people produced a green dye from the bark. Remember your physical, emotional and mental paths run parallel with your Spiritual path. If one is out of sync an imbalance will occur dominating the others. Become a “hollow bone,” opening up to Spirit becoming a conduit for your highest good.

Tree of Inspiration Symbolic of uplifting energy, a nurturing “Heart of Love” and a return to “Oneness.” The Cedar is an historical entity mentioned often in the Bible and other ancient texts and it played an important part in the culture, trade and religious observances of the ancient Middle East. Over the centuries, Assyrians, Babylonians and Persians made expedition to Mount Lebanon for timber or extracted tributes of wood from the coastal cities of Canaan-Phoenicia. The Phoenicians themselves made use of the cedar, especially for their merchant fleets. Solomon
requested large supplies of cedar wood, along with architects and builders from King Hiram of Tyre to build his temple. Nebuchadnezzar boasted on a cuneiform, inscription: "I brought for building, mighty cedars, which I cut down with my pure hands on Mount Lebanon."

The Egyptians extracted the pitch for waterproofing and calking and used cedar resin for mummification. The Nuu-chah-nulth call the Cedar humis, the Haida name is tsu. The Red Cedar found in British Columbia, along the entire coast and in the interior valleys and low mountain slopes reflects the glories of our Creator.

Cedars have been known to live 1,500 years and can grow up to 75 m. (250 feet) and 5.5 m (18 feet) in diameter. Their wood cells contain high concentrations of tannins, aromatic oils and resins that inhibit the growth of wood-decomposing fungi and bacteria. This high rot-resistance along with its straight grain, light weight and thin fibrous bark have made the cedar a very useful tree to many including the First Nations People of British Columbia. Follow the path to the Cedar when you need to be nurtured and honor the Four Directions. Enjoy the pleasure of its scent as you rest and let the warmth of its branches enfold you.

The Cedar’s ability to withstand the ravages of time will help you understand how to work with the elements around you Face the East if you are seeking answers to a situation, think about your problem, the answer will arrive. Face the South if you have lost a loved one and cannot get past the grief, ask for help to keep going on. West is the direction of gratitude. At the end of each day, face the West and offer your thanks for all things. If you are struggling with physical, emotional, mental or spiritual illness, lay down on Mother Earth, your belly touching her and your head to the North. Be patient, it takes a little time for Mother Earth’s energy to rise but it will reach you. Lie there quietly, with your head in the North, absorbing her gift. In all things give thanks.

Although totem poles have become a symbol of all Northwest Coast Native people and their use has spread to neighboring tribes through the years, tall multiple-figure poles were first made only by the northern Northwest Coast Haida, Tlingit, and Tsimshian peoples in Southeast Alaska and British Columbia in the early 1800s. Cedar being the preferred wood! In times past, a totem was raised for several reasons: In honor of a deceased elder who meant a great deal to the band To show the (great) number of names and rights a person had acquired over their lifetime To record an encounter with a supernatural being To symbolize the generosity of a person who sponsored a Potlatch ceremony. Today, totem poles are carved for both Natives and non-Natives and have come to represent Northwest Pacific Coast Native tradition and pride.

Tree of “Heart” Symbolic of healing and rejuvenation.
Everything in creation possesses energy. Through the Zen practice of shikan-taza –“just sitting,” we can feel the energy of trees. A Cherry Tree with its glorious blooms is a wonderful place to begin. When you are in need of transformation and renewal, enjoy the energy of a Cherry tree. Sit under the Cherry tree and feel its force move through you. What is the lesson she is trying to teach …? Are you giving and receiving love “unconditionally? Are you “walking in balance? Have you discovered your authentic self? In the enchanting presence of the Cherry tree, reflect on the questions and let nature’s theatre provide you with a dramatic experience of the sacred. Sit beneath her blossoming boughs, commune with the natural world. Look for the connection between human nature and mystical nature. Relax, go slow, move at a pace that is comfortable to you.

Tree of Honesty Symbolic of longevity A tree of beauty with its glorious floral display can be used as a nut tree and a shade tree, or planted in rows as a windbreak. The edible nuts are sweet-flavored and ready to be harvested during the early weeks of October. It has been said, this deciduous tree is one of nature’s bounties and beauties. Often seen as an ambassador to the mysterious unknown beneath the surface. Her roots hold to the surface, the leaves scan the depths. Heaven and Earth come together, a “Mandala of Spirituality.” In Italy, the first taste of fall brings together chestnuts and wine. When the leaves begin to fall, the natives get their first taste of the wine and the autumn chestnut crop.

According to custom, the chestnuts are roasted, peeled and dropped into a glass of the novella. As the wine is sipped, the flavors and aromas of the earthy chestnut mingle on the palate creating a unique sensation. The largest chestnut-tree in the world is undoubtedly the Castagno di cento cavalla ~ “Chestnut of a Hundred Horses” in the forest of Carpinetto on the east side of Mount Etna. This incredible Chestnut tree stand 160 feet in circumference and is entirely hollow, a perfect kiln for drying chestnuts. The estimated circumference of this giant indicates a life span of 3,600 – 4000 years old. In the fields and woods, turn to the Chestnut Tree … be still and attuned long enough to experience the ancient Wisdom. Let the sounds and smells of nature draw you closer to its source and mystery of things. If the day is warm and sunny savor the rays under the leafy sheaf of a Chestnut’s charm. Be grateful not for your life alone, but for everything that is.

Tree of Folk Healers Symbolic of the “Spice of Life” Once used in love potions and to perfume wealthy Romans, the Cinnamon tree sometimes called “Sweet Wood comes in two varieties two varieties “Cinnamomum Zeylanicum” - Ceylon Cinnamon and “Cinnamomum” - Cassia. The majority of Cinnamon trees grow in the tropics of Sri Lanka, Ceylon, Sumatra, parts of China, Madagascar, Brazil, and the Caribbean. The bark is harvested during the rainy season when it's more pliable. When dried, it curls into long quills, which are either cut into lengths and sold as cinnamon sticks, or ground into powder.

Ceylon [tree] Cinnamon is buff-colored and mildly sweet in flavor; Cassia Cinnamon is a dark, reddish brown color and has a more pungent, slightly bittersweet flavor. Cassia cinnamon is used and sold simply as "cinnamon" in many countries including the United States. The spice’s long history is every bit as rich as the flavor it has imparted across ages in cuisines around the world. Cinnamon can be dated back almost 7,000 years to the Egyptians and Hebrews who used scented cinnamon oil as part of their worship rituals. In ancient Greece and Arabia, cinnamon oil was used for anointing, mummification, wound healing, an appetite stimulant, and burned to raise spiritual vibrations, stimulating psychic powers and bring protection.

Cinnamon is perhaps one of the oldest “herbal medicines,” mentioned in Chinese texts as long ago as 4,000 years. Our sense of smell is a powerful tool to help enhance our “intuitiveness.” Cinnamon is pleasant, stimulates the senses yet calms the nerves, and can affect mood, heart rate, and blood pressure. Burn Cinnamon incense, sit and let the thoughts of the day go by as the gentle scent of Cinnamon carries you on a peaceful resonance throughout your day.

Tree of Faithfulness Symbolic of strength and adaptability. The beauty of trees teaches humankind that everything is part of Creator. The trees, the air, the grass, the summit of the mountain, the thunder beings, the sky and rhythm of the sea, the stars and brightness of the moon … we are all interconnected. The Cypress recalls the freedom of the forest and invites you to leave your attachments behind, settle in a quiet place and be free … Come press your palms into my bark and feel strength running through you. Be still and listen quietly. Being transplanted is possible, I can help you put down roots again and connect with all that is. Free yourself to the flow of Spirit … true holiness is right before your eyes.

Tree of Remembrance Symbolic of Christ’s Crown of Thorns The Dogwood tree is the “aristocrat” of flowering trees because it is breathtakingly beautiful with its white blossoms. There is an element of grace, and a peeling out of harmony reminding you even though it may not be mighty in stature, it posses ancient secrets and wisdom.

Legend of the Dogwood Tree:
There is a legend that at the time of the Crucifixion the dogwood tree grew to a towering size. It’s branches strong and interwoven. So firm and strong was the tree, its timbers were chosen for Christ’s cross. To be used for such a cruel purpose greatly distressed the tree, and Jesus, nailed upon it, sensed this, and in his suffering said, “ Because of your regret and pity for My suffering,
never again shall the dogwood tree grow large enough to be used as a cross. Henceforth it shall be slender and bent and twisted and its blossoms shall be in the form of a cross...two long and two short petals. And in the center of the outer edge of each petal there will be nail prints, brown with rust and stained with red, and in the center of the flower will be a crown of thorns, and all who see it will remember.” I am one of the showiest trees. My flowers unfold from the round conspicuous gray winter flower buds before my leaves come out. My low branches are perfect to encompass you in the quiet calm of the day. Take time to connect with my energy. In your imagination choose a flower … breathe in its magnificent scent, the richness of its beautiful color. Don’t be in a hurry, relax and drink in the harmony of spirit. When you feel refreshed enough to leave this place of tranquility, create a prayer of thanksgiving and return to the present writing down all you observed.

Douglas Fir:
Tree of Strength Symbolic of the past and of things to come This enduring tree which is even older than Christianity and not attached exclusively to any one religion - remains a firmly established part of our holiday customs, engaging not only our senses of sight, touch and smell but also our sense of tradition. The tree evokes a mood of holidays from long ago, of the genial ghost of Christmas Past. Northwest Native Americans have a history of making uses of grand fir foliage and branches. Kwakwaka'wakw shamans wove its branches into headdresses and costumes and used the branches for scrubbing individuals in purification rites. The Hesquiat tribes used its branches as incense and decorative clothing for wolf dancers, its roots for basket weaving and the twigs for arrow shafts. Douglas-fir boughs were frequently used for covering the floors of lodges and sweat lodges and the needles used to make a tea high in vitamin C. We know ourselves to be of this earth. We have grown this way for years. We are amazing in our variety and differences, something humans struggle with. All physical things should be revered and respected. I have made a place for you. Come to the heart of it all, sit beneath the thrusting branches, smell the softness in the air … look, there is vision all around … feel your heart soar.

Tree of Beginnings and Endings Symbolic of the “Circle of Life.”

Elder Berries:
Symbolic of Sorrow and Remorse There is a wealth of folklore, romance and superstition around this English tree. Shakespeare, in “Cymbeline,” referring to it as a symbol of grief, speaks slightingly of it as “the stinking Elder,” yet, although many people profess a strong dislike to the scent of its blossom, the shrub is generally beloved by all who see it.

The Elder tree (Sambucus nigra) is one of the sacred trees of Wicca and represents the thirteenth month on the Celtic Tree Calendar. In medieval times, it was considered dangerous to sleep under its branches or cut it down. In its branches was supposed to dwell a dryad, Hylde-Moer, the Elder-tree Mother, who lived in the tree and watched over it. Should the tree be cut down and furniture be made of the wood, Hylde-Moer was believed to follow her property and haunt the owners. The Elder is said to have been the tree chosen to crucify Christ as well as the tree on which Judas hung himself. There is an old English superstition that a child placed in an elder cradle will pine away or be pinched black and blue by fairies. In consequence of these old traditions, the Elder became the emblem of sorrow and death.

An Elder is a sign of evolutionary change, a transition from one state to another. Seek the Elder and its healing abilities to help you invite Spirit into all parts of your life. Stand with your back against me … words planted now will seed and blossom. Endurance will prevail and you will be lead to a balanced and mature outlook on life weaving a rich tapestry of relationships, each one blossoming in its splendor.

Tree of Harmony Symbolic of balance, calm and a peaceful energy. In the days of the Celts, Europe was covered with dense woods of forests so thick it was said a squirrel could hop from branch to branch from one end to the other without touching the ground. Trees not only provided earthly sustenance: they were regarded as living, magical beings who bestowed blessings from the Otherworlds. From Ancient Celtic Lore comes the concept that all living things arise from the Great Mother, Gaia, source of Life and nourishment and the Elm, often associated with Mother and Earth Goddesses, was said to be the abode of faeries. Relax in the shade of the Elm tree’s branches and leaves. Say hello across the barriers of form and language letting your hands communicate your intention. Feel the connection to Mother Earth grounding you as you plant your feet firmly. Absorb the energy as you release stressful tensions. Let the Elm nourish you and replace negativity, surrounding you with a protective shield of love, harmony and peace. Let yourself be held in the Elm’s embrace of energy … slow down and explore a balanced path.

Tree of Birth & Rebirth of the Sun Symbolic of the Mother Goddess the “Three Brighids” in her three forms as Maiden, Mother and Crone. With their dense, narrow pyramids of dark-green foliage majestically looming up against the sky, Fir trees are one of the most enduring symbols of the high mountain country of the Northwest. While most of the numerous types of Firs insist on the moist coolness of their native mountains, there are some that are suitable for use as ornamental plantings at lower elevations. The Fir family also provides us with a number of favorite Christmas trees each year including the Silver Fir and Balsam Fir. The Silver Fir rarely cultivated in North America, is one of the tallest trees in Europe, sometimes
over 160 feet tall. It is named for its silver gray bark. By its appearance it is best known as the "ideal" Yule tree. It is common in central Europe, while other conifers populate the north. The Fir’s triangular shape represents the trinity of the Goddess. The fine textured dense growth of Fir trees provides shelter and nesting sites for many birds, such as wrens, finches, and robins. They are also popular with squirrels, chipmunks and deer.

The Fir Tree & The Bramble - An Aesop's Fable Deep in a lush, green forest, a tall fir tree stood beside a twisted, thorny bramble. One day it grandly said to the thorny bush, "Bush, if you had one wish in all this wide world, wouldn't you rather be a tall, straight fir tree like me?" "No," said the twisted bush, "Just like you, I'm proud of what I am. Besides, I wouldn't take the gamble. When the woodcutter comes to cut tall, straight firs, wouldn't you rather be a bramble?" Sit and lean against the trunk of an old Fir and practice being present in his midst. Put your head close to the bark … can you hear him breathing? Open yourself up and imagine that you and the tree are one, gently swaying together in a slow dance. Let the Fir Tree bestow upon you strength and healing wisdom from past and present lives. Accept the gift of insight and knowledge along with clear vision that are the Fir’s properties. Experience a soothing and calm rhythm engulfing you as the gift of connection begins to shift your focus. Give thanks for the teachings you will receive. Return when you feel nudged by Spirit.

Tree of Chasity Symbolic of hope, union and marriage. The common name for Hawthorn comes from haw, which is an old English word for “hedge.” The trees name simply means “thorny hedge.” The Hawthorn, also known as May Tree and White Thorn is one of the most sacred trees to Wicca, fairies and spring celebrations. In Irish folklore the Hawthorn, is sometimes referred to as the fairy bush, and it was considered bad luck to cut it in fear of offending the fairies that inhabited the tree especially when the powerful “three,” oak, ash and thorn grew together. Solitary Hawthorn trees growing on hills or near wells serve as markers to the faery realm. Even today, in parts of Ireland and Wales, a springtime custom, to bring blessings upon yourself and your family, is to plait crowns of hawthorn blossoms and leave them for the angels and faeries, who come at night and dance around them.

As a New Year waits in the wings to open the gates to new beginnings, indulge yourself in this cleansing ceremony. Using foliage from a Hawthorn tree to welcome the arrival of a new year. Make a ball of last year’s foliage, tie with a white ribbon and burn in a bonfire ridding yourself of fears, worries, and concerns. Start fresh by making another ball from the fresh branches and leaves and keeping it to be used in the following year’s bonfire. The Hawthorn is considered a holy tree, once thought to be a trysting place for the Earth spirits. It was often planted at crossroads, since such spirits were thought to gather there. Weary travelers often would tear off and leave bits of clothing hanging in the trees as a prayer flag or “wish-rag” offering for health, luck, love and success.

This tradition continues today. During times of “misgivings” come lighten your load as you rest by my feet. Take a few moments to relax, reflect over your life, the lessons and loves. Gently remove a piece of thorn to use as an amulet or talisman. Feel it charged with the force of my energy … tuck it safely away for it will teach you the reverence of spiritual powers and sacred places.

Tree of Knowledge Symbolic of wisdom and poetic Inspiration. In mediaeval times, the Hazel tree was considered sacred and any unjustified felling, was a crime punishable by death. It was believed that magical skills and knowledge could be gained from eating Hazel nuts, which are the emblems of concentrated wisdom. In Irish folklore, the Hazel tree was the home of “Bile Ratha,” the poetic fairy. In Celtic tradition, the “Salmon of Knowledge” was said to have eaten the nine nuts of poetic wisdom dropped into its sacred pool from the hazel tree growing beside it. Each nut eaten by the salmon became a spot on its skin.

Prayer/Talking Sticks made of Hazel wood are said to hold a healing property. Ancient legend tells that after the banishment from Eden, God gave Adam the power to create any animal he wanted. In order to do this, Adam had to strike the sea with a rod made of Hazel. The first animal Adam created in this fashion was the sheep, but Eve saw this and created a wolf, which immediately attacked the sheep. Thus, in order to control the wolf, Adam created the dog. The dog overcame the wolf and harmony was thereby restored. For over 7,000 years, dowsing has been used as a method for finding water, treasures, people, animals, and to tell the past and the future. The tradition tool of the dowser is a forked rod made of certain wood and Hazel is one of the preferred woods. Wands made of this wood symbolize healing and white magic. It is said, to enlist the aid of plant fairies to gain knowledge, wisdom and poetic inspiration, string hazelnuts on a cord and hang up in your house or ritual room. As the early morning sun breaks through the woods, can there be a more tranquil time to sit in contemplation? Late rains have brought new growth to the woods similar to the “rite of passage” that awaits you. Sit and touch the earth … feel her pulse slowing you down. Listen to the voice of the redbird calling to its mate … he sings of things to come, not only for him but also for you. Spirit is never confused … there is something very good about to happen … rewarding relationships spring up in all kinds of unexpected places … it is a beautiful world.

Tree of Faith Symbolic of family, tribe or community Majestic yet humble, the tree offers a wide range of value to our own everyday senses. E.H. Wilson Writes from his book America’s Greatest Garden, "Within the hemlock grove reigns the
stillness of primeval forest broken only by the babbling of the waters which wash its feet…" The Canadian Hemlock tree, Tsuga canadensis, is also called Eastern Hemlock or Hemlock spruce may take 250 to 300 years to reach maturity and live for 800 years or more. Along the both sides of the American coast, the hemlock would be carved into spoons, combs, roasting spits, and other implements.

The Haida would carve from bent trunks these wondrous giant feast dishes. Tribes of the Nisga`a and Gitksan would scrape off the inner bark to bake into edible dried cambium cakes. During winter it would be whipped with snow and oil from eulachon (candlefish). The Salish or Saalich tribes used the Hemlock dye made from the bark to color wool, baskets and cheeks. Depending on the preparation, this decoction was also used in removal of facial hair.

The Quileute used hemlock bark for tanning hides and soaking spruce-root baskets to make them watertight. It is said, Hemlock People who become Elders are usually strong leaders and guides to the rest of the world. They have a dignity that creates a silent knowing about the world, so when they talk, people stop and listen. Develop a relationship with the Hemlock, ask permission to know it and let the Hemlock’s medicine be effective in your life.

Tree of Death and Rebirth Symbolic of the life force, vitality and immortality. Warding off negative energies is an attribute of growing Holly in the garden. The shiny green leaves represent the vitality of life even in the coldest of times and is used in Yule for this reason. It is said Holly guards against evil spirits and when thrown at wild animals, makes them lie down quietly. Holly has been considered symbolic of Christ’s sufferings because it sports thorns, the crown of thorns he wore, and the red berries resembling drops of blood. . Holly is also considered a potent life symbol along with ivy and mistletoe.

Pagan Romans celebrated a winter feast known as Saturnalia, during which holly was exchanged as a symbol of good will. When Christianity took root in the Roman Empire, Christmas replaced Saturnalia, and the holly tradition was forbidden. Nonetheless, Christians continued to incorporate holly into their Christmas celebrations and to represent the plant in their holiday art. She walks past the Holly and reaches down claiming a ruby pebble. Looking down she realizes this is not a stone but a Holly berry and leans closer to hear the Holly speak, “To you I am merely a berry in your hand, you to me are but a passing breeze invited to spread goodwill, peace, health and happiness.”

Tree of Love Attraction Symbol of luck and protection. The Juniper tree has long been recognized as one of the most powerful of all fairy tales trees. In the language of flowers Juniper symbolizes perfect loveliness, beauty and protection and was said to have sheltered the prophet Elijah when he was fleeing from Queen Jezebel. Legends of
old tell us “Frau Wachholder” the Jupiter tree goblin, could be invoked to make thieves return stolen goods to their rightful owners. The Juniper's wood was most commonly used to burn, not for its heat, but rather for its smoke. Though burning Juniper gives off only minimal visible smoke, this smoke is highly aromatic, and in ancient times was used as incense or “smudge” in most rituals of blessings and purification. In many cultures, from the Chinese to the Pueblo Indians, Juniper was used not only to treat specific ills but also to guard against “bad magic.” In ancient Sumaria and Babylonia Juniper was burned to appease the gods of the underworld.

In Europe, Juniper branches were smoldered and carried around fields to protect crops and animals and in Wales, it was believed to cut down a Juniper tree would surely result in the woodcutter's ensuing death. Most people are familiar with one primary use for Juniper - the flavorful and highly aromatic Juniper berries are the secret to giving Gin its flavor. This beverage originated with the Dutch, whose name for Juniper, “Jenever,” eventually became the shortened moniker “Gin” by which we call the drink today. The Juniper has an abundance of healing properties and if by chance you “suffer” from the winter blues, let the fragrance of the Juniper with its natural antidote to the emotionally debilitating effects of winter brighten your life. Beads made from the wood of Juniper trees can also bring physical relief and help ease rheumatism and arthritis. As the heat from the beads is slowly released it brings a sense of warm soothing, a wonderful way to comfort and nurture a weary body.

Tree of Fragrance Symbolic of beauty and spiritualism The fragrance of a Lilac tree is well-known and loved by gardeners all over the world for its beauty and fragrance; one of the most powerful fragrances emitted by a plant. The dark green leaves blending with its fragrant lavender flowers are a favorite for spring-time landscapes world-wide. . These old fashioned trees may have been Grandma’s favorite, but they continue to find a place in the gardens of today.

Lilacs are considered magical and believed to carry humans into fairyland and the supernal world. English tradition considers the lilac to be an unlucky flower to be brought into the house because it is associated with death. Over the years, Lilacs have brought an element of grace to their environment but are best known for inspiring young poets. If you love to write but feel discouraged … its time to find the nearest Lilac tree. Sit under her blossoms letting your heart and spirit be aflame. Listen with all your might to the sound of the wind rustling through her leaves. In the depth of that silence hear the word, followed by another, and another and another … and soon your heart will feel rapture for the words are within you waiting to be released.

Tree of Victory or Accomplishment Symbolic of success and abundance.
The Maple is a favorite amongst shade trees throughout North America. Slow growing and relatively shade tolerant, the hard wood makes excellent flooring and furniture. All species of Maple can be tapped for syrup but the Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum), also called hard maple or rock maple, is one of our most valuable trees. Native Americans invented the process of maple sap collection and its distillation into maple sugar and maple syrup and the sap, continues to tantalize palettes from the young to the old.

People from all over the world travel to see the Maples turn into an autumn patchwork of spectacular reds, golds and greens. This visual glory is a relatively recent phenomenon. Earlier inhabitants would have found mostly evergreen forests. The spectacle that is today's autumn evolved after the Industrial Revolution, when great stands of pine were cut down to make boxes and mostly replaced with the maples and spruce that turn Technicolor every year.

Among the folklore of maple-sugaring is an old legend that at one time the sap of the maple tree was almost pure syrup and that when tasted by one of the gods he found it to be too good and too easily obtained. It would be, he thought, too little prized. Accordingly, he diluted the sap of the maple until its sweetness was barely discernible. "Now my nephews", he said, "will have to labor hard to make sugar from this sap, and it will be much more valuable to them in the future time." Listen to the subtle song of the Maple while at rest in the winter and know this song is the foundation for Mother Earth’s spring awakening, for the rich beauty and fruiting of summer and for the twilight and autumn as we arrive at a more contemplative time. Don’t be afraid to stop and tap into Maple tree’s energy even though you may not hear any concrete suggestions. By tapping into its energy, you are showing that you care, that you believe the Maple is more than a mere physical specimen you see standing at the side of the road. Walk in wonder. For each specimen that stands at the side of the road has a special energy to offer you. Acknowledge your love for them as you walk by and the benefits you derive will equal the benefits they derive from you.

Tree of Strength & Longevity Symbolic of Truth and ancient wisdom and of the marriage between the god and the goddess. The mighty Oak, a noble tree, earned the reputation “King of Trees” in a grove. Although a debate has raged since the Renaissance as to whether or not King Arthur was a historical figure, there is little dispute that Arthur’s Round Table at Winchester was made from a single slab of an Oak tree.

The Oak is sacred to the Thunder Beings. Legend tells us Hercules attracted thunderstorms with sympathetic magic, by rattling an oak club in a hollow Oak, or by stirring a pool with an oak branch. When drought ravaged the land, pioneers celebrated the arrival of Woodpeckers who were thought to be knocking for rain when they tapped on oak trunks. Oak trees were held sacred by the Druids believing that anything found growing on an oak tree had been sent from heaven, a sure sign that the god had chosen the tree and made it sacred.

The word Druid is said to come from the Welsh word “Derwydd - Oakseer” which means poet. Other etymologists hold that Druid comes from the Greek word for oak, and that Druid meant “Oak Men.” Legend says, if you dance around the Oak tree and wear some of its leaves you will have a long happy marriage and if a question lies in your heart that you find troubling, go to an Oak tree and embrace it … the “Oakman” will send you the answer in a prophetic dream.

Oak wood was carved to make awls, corn-pounding mortars, and other tools and in making some Iroquois canoes. In later times basket splints were made of oak because of the toughness and durability of the wood. Inner bark of the Bur oak was used in Chippewa red and black dye recipes. Black oak is also known as Dyer's Oak, as the orange inner bark produces strong dye. Standing tall like a sentry, its grandeur branches spread out in a distinctive pattern that seemingly form a mattress for the clouds above, the old Oak tree invites you to rest beneath its boughs. Feel a tug pulling you toward its grand trunk.

When you talk to an old Oak tree, draw close and feel the Oak tree’s energy. Feel the history and wisdom hidden within its massive trunk. Walk around it and try to imagine what this tree has witnessed in its history. Find a spot to sit near its branching roots and open your heart to a Spiritual Elder. Honor the wisdom the Oak will bring.

Tree of Life Symbolic of Harmony, Tranquility and Serenity The Olive tree has been celebrated and referenced in the cultural works of every society. Thomas Jefferson wrote, "The olive tree is surely the richest gift of Heaven". The Olive tree was very sacred to the Greek Goddess Athena who gave the Olive tree the power to bear fruit. Ancient Greeks credited its creation to the Goddess Athena and crowned the winners of the first Olympics with the leaves from the Olive tree. When Xerxes captured Acropolis he burned a mystical olive tree that magically reappeared.

In biblical times, Moses deferred military conscription for the men cultivating the orchards of the “Tree of Life.” The oil pressed from the olives became an important commodity, used in the kitchen and for sacred lamps in temples. In Scriptural and classical writings the oil is mentioned as a symbol of goodness and purity, and the tree as representing peace and happiness. The foliage of the Olive tree has been used for centuries to honor victory, wisdom and peace.

In Genesis, an olive branch was returned to Noah on the ark by a dove, signaling the end of the great flood. The olive and its oil have always engaged the intellect, the senses and the passions of the Greek world for the past four thousand years. Olive oil holds a sacred place in the solemn rites of Greek religious life. And it is written Ancient Greek gods were believed born under the branches of an Olive tree. Everything in nature has a trademark and for the Olive tree, it is olive oil. New Italian research finds olive oil contains antioxidants, similar to those in tea and red wine, that help combat disease processes, including LDL cholesterol's ability to clog arteries. And let us not forget the beautiful silver-green leaf of the Olive tree is the United Nation’s Official Symbol of Peace.

Together let us entreat the Olive tree by sitting at its feet, breaking bread and enjoying plump olives to denote a good friendship. The earth will remember our visit and when we next return, nature can once again teach us about life.

Tree of the Sun & Masculine Sexuality Symbolic of fertility Taoists once believed that if a Pine tree’s resin was allowed to flow down its trunk and onto the earth, a fu-lin or mushroom of immortality would grow from it in 1000 years. Eating the fu-lin would give a person eternal youth. The Pine's strength in the face of adversity makes it symbolic of those who have become strong through suffering, or who have kept to their beliefs and promises in spite of opposition. In earlier times, Native tribes throughout the Americas noticed that injured Pine trees secreted a sticky substance that formed a protective seal over wounds. Settlers were quick to agree and reasoned that this resin – and also the gooey pine tar they learned to distill from the wood, might be used to heal burns, and wounds on humans and animals. From the earliest times, the Ojibwa crushed white pine needles for an application to a headache and for backache they inhaled the fumes of the heated needles. Throughout the 18th and 19th century, pine tar often mixed with lard or beeswax was used to treat wounds and other skin conditions and also used to make shampoos to combat itching. Pine sometimes called “Sweetest of Woods” was sacred to the sea-god Neptune (Poseidon) and to Bacchus (Dionysus). When mixed with juniper and cedar, Pine was and continues to be used to purify homes and ritual areas. Nowadays we use many types of evergreens for Christmas trees, but the Pine tree has its own special legend ...

“As Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus fled to Egypt many plants hid them. One evening the family stopped near a large old pine tree. The tree invited them to spend the night inside the hollow in its trunk. After the family was inside, the tree folded its branches down around the family, hiding them when Herod’s soldiers passed. In the morning the Christ Child blessed the pine tree with an imprint of his tiny hand. If you cut a pinecone in half lengthwise, you will see the hand in the cone.” Indulge yourself by taking an uninterrupted time to rest. The fragrance of the countryside is exhilarating. Peace of mind is what you seek. In the presence of an old Pine tree, lavish yourself by tuning into the silence, as you lie quietly under the warmth of an enchanting sky. Although the road is unfamiliar, be strong! Be of courage! Put things in order … change what needs to be changed, one by one. This is a new day!

“Grandmother” - Tree of the Forest. Symbolic of the Ancient ones and “Old Growth Forests.”

Ancient Tree of mystery, unending truth, wisdom and knowledge, these largest of living things are from a prehistoric line. The biggest and tallest of trees present on earth at the same time as the dinosaur. The Coastal Redwood is a beautiful and stately tree that has withstood the test of time, run the gamut of all disasters and still holds firm. Burned-out hollows of the Redwood tree are referred to as "Chick-holes", where farmers near the forest would keep young taenish and garthhooks safe from predators in the Redwoods’ pre-made room. Legend tells a story of young Tethinrhim, who was very proud of himself and his accomplishments. His cocky attitude was not well liked, however, and several of his tribe mates sought to end his life. Upon discovering this, the arrogant young man ran away. His pursuers followed him. Frightened he ran all the way to the sea. When realized that the game was up, he dropped to his knees and prayed to Queprur, the Goddess of Death that she would not collect his soul in a painful manner. Queprur, was awed and amazed by this young warrior who chose to pray to her in his time of need. So She blessed the red-haired warrior by sparing his life and turned him into a Redwood. In early times this wood was used extensively for building of houses and buildings. In Redwood country, instances on record, tell of churches, banks, and buildings built from a single tree. Other uses included organ pipes, flumes, tanks, and coffins to name a few. Today, Redwood burls are very attractive and are made into furniture and of course, sculpture. Grandmother, while the world is sleeping, I sit in anticipation as the glorious beauty of the sunrise shines rays of hope on me. I listen closely to the trees and animals, hearing their voices, teaching me what I need to know. And as I sit with the beautiful trees, I offer a simple prayer thanking the trees, the sun, the animals, believing that all of life is sacred. I remember I am part of a greater plan.

Rowan Tree or Mountain Ash:
Tree of Vision Symbolic of protection against enchantment The Rowan tree sometimes referred to as "the “Whispering Tree,” well known among the Celts has been considered magical for thousands of years by many different cultures. One of the earliest references to the Rowan is in the ancient Finnish creation myth about the Thunder Goddess "Rauni." According to this myth, the earth was barren and devoid of all plants when she came down from heaven and took the form of a Rowan tree. After Rauni’s intimate relationship with "Ukko" God of the sky, the result of their union was the creation of all the plants of the earth. According to this ancient myth, all plants and trees are descended from the Rowan tree as a result of it having been struck by a mighty bolt of magical lightening. The Rowan is a tree of vision, healing, and intuitiveness. Its lovely red berries are shaped like a five-pointed star, an ancient symbol of protection against spells, enchantment and glamour’s.

Sit by the Rowan and let it arouse you into remembering, you, too, have secret strength. Trust your insights, and act upon them - even if others see you as “unusual” or “unpredictable.” In the yard there grows a Rowan. Thou with reverent care Should'st tend it. Holy is the tree there growing. Holy likewise are its branches. On its boughs the leaves are holy. And it's berries yet more holy. From: “Kalevala” a compilation of Finnish oral poems dating back to the first century A.D.

Tree of Creative Consciousness Symbol of certainty of the NOW The original home of the Walnut tree appears to have been north of Persia. Its Greek names, "Persicon" and "Basilicon," indicate this origin and the esteem in which it was held. From the latter name is derived its specific name of "Regia" or royal. According to Pliny, the tree was also called "Caryon" (the origin of the name Carya, the Hickory), from the drowsy feeling in the head produced by the smell of its leaves; but possibly this name may be due, as Cowley suggests, to the resemblance of the kernel to the form of the brain. In young trees the wood is white and liable to be worm-eaten; but as the tree becomes older it is compact, brown, and beautifully veined, though still easy to work. Though now largely replaced for such purposes by mahogany and other foreign woods, Walnut is undoubtedly the most beautiful furniture-wood of Europe.

In Italy, there is a legend of witch gatherings in the town of Benevento, at the site of an old walnut tree. Manuscripts from old witch trials in Italy, speak of this tree, which, it was said, had always been there, and in leaf all year long. The nuts of this tree were said to have been of pyramid-like form. Many of these walnuts were sold as talismans and amulets. The tree was so huge, and its branches so thick with leaves, its shade appeared like night itself. It was considered sacred to Proserpine, Nox, Diana, and all Cthonic deities … that same tree still stands today. On an intuitive or psychic level, you may see events or circumstances that have not yet come to pass when absorbed in the Walnut tree’s energy. Recognize that in the uncertainty of the events and circumstances that do color your human existence, no amount of fear or worry about unpleasant circumstances will prevent them from occurring. The Walnut Tree sings …“See where your certainty lies. It lies in the song of your own being. It lies in your creative expression … and in your inner knowledge that you are a unique expression of a greater whole. We are Walnut.”

Tree of Enchantment Symbolic of life’s rhythm, its changing cycles and a new awakening into the Buddha-mind.

Groves of Willows were considered so magical that priests, priestesses and all types of artisans sat among these trees to gain eloquence, inspiration, skills and prophecies. The graceful branches of the Willow represented flexibility. Before the advent of aspirin, Willow was commonly known to relieve earaches, headaches, and toothaches—either by making a decoction of the bark and sap, or by chewing young willow twigs. In 1827 a French chemist isolated from meadowsweet a chemical found in the sap and bark of willows. From this was derived salicylic acid, and eventually, at the end of the nineteenth century, acetylsalicylic acid, which is more commonly known as the analgesic aspirin, became the world's first synthetic drug, It was developed and marketed as Aspirin, named after the old botanical name for Meadowsweet, “Spirea Ulmaria.”

I am a tree that stands tall yet frail. My branches reach out but cannot hail The remains of this forsaken world And nature forgotten, unwontedly hurled. Take my branch and your might can twist, But I will not snap from only your jest. Nor will I lash out in vengeful strike But in the breeze I’ll return as right. - Dil’galisgi Uwan’gatlv The Willow is a Moon tree, Sacred to the White Lady. Her beauty, grace and a connection to the wellsprings of wisdom, wells up from the Willow tree’s dimensions. Today the weaving of willow is enjoying resurgence and being applied to novel situations such as landscape sculptures, outdoor seating and children's play huts. All of these are being made from live cuttings, grown in situ, to be woven and sculpted into living structures, bringing together willow's vitality and utility to enhance new, often urban, settings. Maneuver yourself close to my curly willow vines as I embrace you with a flexible shimmering thread spinning around you. This is an active synergy of Mother Earth, a moving flow, to and fro, drawing forth insights, letting them spring up like fountains everywhere around you. Rest awhile that I may bring you glimpses of your destiny and path.

Tree of Immortality Symbolic of death, rebirth and the runes The Yew's branches grow down into the ground to form new stems, which grow to become trunks of separate but linked growth. In time, the central trunk becomes old, but a new tree grows from within the decay, and is indistinguishable from the original growth. Thus the Yew tree represents age, rebirth and reincarnation - the birth of a new soul springs from ancient roots. Yew trees are a living link to our ancient past and may be the oldest-lived tree in the world, the oldest of the trees being 2,000 years old. Its very name is mysterious in its simple brevity, and
has been traced back to the sacred word for Jehovah, the Immortal. The Yew has a deep history and is associated with much folklore. The Yew is the traditional cemetery tree, because Celtic Priests and Priestesses regarded it as a symbol of immortality planting it in their Sacred Groves.

Often used to enhance magical and psychic abilities, and to induce visions, the Yew’s evergreen leaves were said to be symbolic of everlasting life. The Greeks considered Yew trees sacred and associated them with Hecate, Queen of the Underworld. Christians traditionally planted Yew trees in their country churchyards. The Yew tree provided wood for shelter, tools and weapons; foliage and bark for every medicine bag. Its greatest influence on culture however, was its myriad spiritual associations with the goddess, the grave, afterlife and immortality. Although the Yew tree was revered in nearly every culture of the northern temperate zones, Yew trees were destroyed for their utility. Gone from Greece and Rome by the time of Christ, gone from Europe by the 17th century. Draw closer let me whisper in your ear … secret healings and tender mercies. This is the time of relinquishment, a time for taking stock and releasing old hurts. A new season’s afterglow prepares to enter your life … from loss to love … a great new romance with life. As many wonderful revelations unfold, feel yourself being gently led back to wholeness.

Trees reach the highest heavens and penetrate the deepest secrets of the earth. They are the largest living beings on this plain, connected with infinite knowledge and life.

Nature Spirits:
In Greek mythology, nymphs are spirits of nature. They are minor female deities and the protectors of springs, mountains, and rivers. Nymphs are represented as young, pretty girls. Each presiding over a specific aspect of nature and there are: Dryads ~ The Forest Naiads ~ Springs and Rivers Nereid ~ The Mediterranean Oceanids ~ Sea Oreads ~ Mountains Limoniads ~ Meadows Limniads ~ Lakes, Marshes and swamps Napaea ~ Valleys Nature Spirits were worshipped in a nymphaeum, a monumental fountain which was raised in the vicinity of a well. The male counterpart of a nymph is the satyr.

Tree Spirits, sometimes called “Devas” belong to the earth element and are ruled by the Arch Angel Uriel. Legend says that each tree and plant has its own gifts, talents and abilities to share. Male Tree Spirits are said to be kindly, wise and reserved. Open to sensitive women and may court their souls. Female Tree Spirits are more playful and adventurous with humans and may fall in love with a human man. In Polynesian culture, the miracle tree, Pukatala is said to be inhabited by nature spirits.

In Lakota mythology, Canotila ("they live in a tree") are a race of forest-dwelling creatures, similar to fairies. The Egyptians call them “Afries,” the Africans call them “Yowahoos,” the Persians call them “Devs,” and the Jews call them “Shedim.”

Tira’wa [the Great Spirit] is in all things

Tree Meditation:
Come and awaken to the wisdom of trees and the spirits who inhabit them. Walk through the leafy green-canopied corridors with their rot steps and sunny dappled floors. Feel the vibration of the ancient forest as the energy moves through connecting you to all things. Close your eyes and become mindful of this unifying force. Relax and let go of the day’s concerns, as you visualize the energy of the Earth … reddish brown, shades of green, beams of golden sunlight streaming through you clearing out all negative energy … moving it down … down … exiting through your feet. The journey you are taking is for a sacred purpose. Become more attuned to the subtle energy of your tree and feel every cell in your body being restored. In your relaxed state, accept that you have a higher purpose. Ask for guidance … talk from the heart, not the head … you are now ready to receive a direct teaching.

An answer will come out of the stillness. If it is something you do not understand, ask Spirit for clarification. Listen to the land singing, the power of this place is alive. Release yourself as you draw strength. Contemplate awhile, absorbing all you have been given. It may not seem obvious at this time but do not be concerned … it will unfold for your highest good. When you are ready … slowly become aware of your body, open your eyes and gently stretch reaching your arms up to the heavens while planting your feet firmly to the earth … believe what you received was a gift from Spirit. Then give the tree a hug, and sit with your back resting against its trunk jotting down what you experienced. When you feel Spirit nudging you to leave, it is time to get up and express your gratitude. As a sign of respect end with a prayer of appreciation giving thanks to the tree for its usefulness and to Creator who is the source of all things. -
written by Lotus © copyright ~ July 18th, 2004

Tree Meditation – (2) -
Author is Unknown

Breathe deeply and feel the earth under your feet. Feel your feet becoming roots … seeping down, down, down, through the earth, through rock and more soil. Feel the earth getting warmer as your roots extend down deeper and deeper. Feel the energy stirring here. Feel the movement, and strength and power of that energy. Draw that energy up through your roots. Feel it nourishing and strengthening you as you draw it up through the rock and soil, up, up, up through your roots, through your trunk, and up into your branches. Feel your branches growing up into the sky. Up, up, up, beyond the clouds, above the atmosphere, reaching out to the stars. Feel your leaves reaching out and touching the stars. Feel the energy stirring there. Feel the light of the sun and draw that in through your leaves. Bring that energy in and draw it down through your branches. Bring it into your trunk, and send it down into your roots. Give excess sun energy to the earth and then draw up earth energy, take it back up through your roots, trunk, and branches and give it to the sun and the sky. Bathe yourself in this flow for as long as you like. Keep what you need and give the extra back to the earth and sun. Green Tree Meditation - Author is Unknown Whether or not you feel connected to the non-human animals that inhabit our planet, try the following visualization. If you open your heart and your mind, you can connect to the very essence of an animal and feel their natural power. Begin by sitting or lying quietly with your eyes gently closed. Take two deep breaths, inhaling through your nose, exhaling through your mouth. As your breathing finds its normal rhythm, instruct your physical body to relax. Begin at your toes and slowly bring warm, relaxing energy up your body to the top of your head. As your physical body continues to relax into the visualization, begin to create a picture in your mind's eye. First imagine yourself standing at the base of a very large tree. As you look up into the tree, you see countless limbs filled with green leaves how inviting and safe it is. As you stand at the base of the tree, you notice a squirrel standing beside you. He pays no attention to you and begins to scurry up the trunk of the tree toward one of the lowest branches. You watch as he confidently makes his way higher and higher in the tree. Imagine what it might feel like to be a squirrel: small, light body, heart racing, so much to do now become a squirrel for a moment. As you begin to move up the tree, you feel light and agile. You can feel your tiny feet as they touch the bark of the tree and your tail as it flicks back and forth for balance when you run out onto a branch. You go to the end of each interesting branch as you work your way nearly to the top of the tree. Spend a few moments exploring examine each limb all the way to the top. When you reach the top, there, nestled in the bend of the highest branches, is your home. Built of leaves and twigs, it gives you a safe, welcome place to rest for a moment. Go into the nest and enjoy the peace and quiet for as long as you like.

When you feel completely rejuvenated, return to the base of the tree knowing that you understand a little bit more about another inhabitant of your world. Sit at the base of the tree and once again take two deep breaths. As you feel your lungs expand, re-energize your body by bringing healthy, warm energy from the top of your head down to the tips of your toes. When you feel ready, gently move your fingers and toes and slowly open your eyes. Time to Reflect Spend time in a wooden area of your choice … the forest, your backyard, or the nearest group of trees. Walk among friends staying as long as you wish. Make sure your visit is long enough to take in the scents, and charms of the world around you. Lie on the grass, the ground, sit on a log, a rock, or walk around weaving your way through the Standing Sentinels. Keep an eye out for animal life, the birds, squirrels, the insects that fly and the ones that crawl. Be still and reverent, taking time to pray, reflect or contemplate. Be receptive to the voice of the woods, their intricacy and balance and how they speak of survival and hope. They know about life. In the stillness, listen to the serenade of nature singing, her voice floating on the wings of the wind. Let the experiences of these enchanting moments sustain you until you meet again.

Expression – Knock on Wood In England, people say, "touch wood" when they want to head off bad luck. Although "knock on wood" is a popular expression, the origin is quite unknown, though some writers have pointed to pre-Christian rituals involving the spirits of sacred trees such as the oak, ash, holly or hawthorn. While others believe it may have originated from the time of the ancient Druids, an order of Celtic priests in Ireland and Britain. An old Irish belief tells us we should knock on wood to let the little people know that we are thanking them for a bit of good luck. Whatever the origin, you’ll often see people knocking on wood to keep away bad luck or help prevent a change of fortune from good to bad.

Sources: I have explored sites too numerous to mention for this project as well as many books. The information provided here is the result of my research and has been adapted from all the material I gathered as well as from the guidance of Spirit and my Guides. I offer them my deepest gratitude. I have added two Tree Meditations – the source of the author is unknown.

After the Ecstasy, the Laundry: by Jack Kornfield ~ Pg. 100
A Reverence for Wood: by Eric Sloane
Celtic Tree Mysteries: by Steve Blamires
Cunningham's Encyclopedia Of Magical Herbs - By Scott Cunningham
Kindling the Celtic Spirit: Ancient Traditions to Illumine Your Life Through the Seasons – by Mara Freeman
Sacred Trees: by Nathaniel Altman

Celtic Tree Oracle: by Liz Murray, Colin Murray, Vanessa Card
The Celtic Wisdom of Trees: by Jane Gifford Green
World Oracle: Listening to the Voices of Sacred Trees & Plants: Text by Kathleen Jenks, artwork by Sandra Stanton
The Herb Book: by John Lust
The Spirit of Trees: by Fred Hageneder
Tree Wisdom: by Jacqueline Memory Patterson
Encyclopedia Mythica In Spirit

... Lotus

Libraries are on this row
INDEX Page 1
(Divination & Dreams, Guides & Spirit Helpers)
INDEX Page 2
INDEX Page 3
(Main Section, Medicine Wheel, Native Languages & Nations, Symbology)
INDEX Page 4
(Myth & Lore)
INDEX Page 5
(Sacred Feminine & Masculine, Stones & Minerals)
INDEX Page 6
(Spiritual Development)
INDEX Page 7
(Totem Animals)
INDEX Page 8
(Tools & Crafts. Copyrights)

Cinnamon Moon
© Copyright: Cinnamon Moon & River WildFire Moon (Founders.) 2000-date
All rights reserved.

Site constructed by Dragonfly Dezignz 1998-date

River Moon