(Warning! This is one of those off-the-wall, weird posts…)
I’m a tree person. I’m drawn, especially, to clusters of trees. They hold a deep fascination and spiritual resonance for me. I sometimes fancy if I could stand silently in a grove of oak trees and close my eyes I’d realize I was a Druid in a previous life! Did you know there were actually THREE orders of Druids?
There were the Bards, who were the Keepers of the Past. Their words were considered to be magical. They were the journalists, historians, critics, and performing artists of the ancient Celtic world. They used their skills with words to weave a spell of enchantment around their listeners. Their ultimate goal was to foster spiritual transformation, to help others in their quests for spiritual growth. (Plato at Plato’s Groove is a Bard!)
The Ovates (Seers) were the Keepers of the Future. The word “ovate” is related to the Indo-European word for mental agitation and prophecy, implying that this skill is related to entering altered states of consciousness through which spiritual information may be received. They were similar to Native American Shamans. They were the ones who presided over life processes (birth and death), rites of passage, and rituals of transformation. They were also healers. (I’m pretty sure Fimnora Westcaw at Quantum Hermit, who is on hiatus at the moment, is a Seer, and I believe Mary at Walking My Path is a Healer.)
And finally there were the Druids themselves who were Keepers of the Present. A lot of people think they were just tree huggers, the first New Agers, but historical evidence says the Druids were the intellectuals of Celtic society. Scientists, philosophers, lawyers, judges, mediators, psychologists, and theologians. Just as warriors were the muscles of Celtic society, Druids were the brains, both spiritual and political. (Hm… I’d say Safar Fiertze at Blisters, Bunions & Blarney AND Opher at Opher’s World may just be Druids!. 😉 )
And this is one of the Druid symbols…
This beautiful Triscele pin was sent to me by the lovely Ms. Anna at Anna Cottage this past Christmas. That was such a surprise to receive. Anna, you’re a sweetheart!. 😀 (And she knows I have a Celtic heart…) I’ve also read that the Triscele represents the flow of nature: birth, death, rebirth. I thought that is beautiful.
And also, did you know that trees have their own voices? (I’ve probably mentioned this before…like more than once!) If you listen carefully to the sound oak leaves make in the breeze as compared to a maple or an aspen, you’ll realize they really do sound different. (General Mapleon in our front yard has a fairly deep voice.. 😉 )
I find it interesting that trees play such an important part in historical lore of all kinds of cultures. The Native American Shamans believe trees are endowed with magical, life-giving powers. I just read this excerpt from Soul Journey by John A. Sanford. It made me really sad. I wanted to share it with you…
When the Apache woman gave birth to her child she did so under a tree. The placenta was placed in the tree, for it was regarded as the child’s double. Whenever the tree’s leaves were renewed in the spring the life of the person born there would also be renewed. If the individual at some point in his or her life felt the need for renewed strength and purpose, that person could make a pilgrimage back to the birth spot and there perform a ceremony; this would renew his or her strength. The Apache Chief Geronimo said of the Apaches who were dying on the reservations that they died because they were not allowed to visit the spot where they were born to be renewed.
I realize that’s a strange custom, and I’ve no idea if it’s still practiced, but it resonated with me none the less. I’m not a big nature lover (ten minutes in the sun and I’m burned to a crisp), which is why it’s so weird that I’m crazy about trees. But I feel a real kinship to them. I think having grown up running around Mohican forest in Ohio must have made me a blood brother at sometime or other! Lord knows I left the blood of skinned knees from climbing on many, many trees!
What about you? Is there something particular in nature that you are drawn to? If so, why does it resonate with you?
Triskele — moi
Chief Geronimo — www.history.com