Thursday, October 18, 2018

The Prayer Tree . . . Aflame

In many pagan and indigenous spiritualities, any tree can be representative of the tree, i.e., the World Tree or Cosmic Tree.

In numerous religious traditions the World Tree is represented as a colossal tree which supports the heavens, thereby connecting the heavens, the terrestrial world, and, through its roots, the underworld. The Tree of Life, which connects all forms of creation and is mentioned in the Judeo-Christian Book of Genesis, is a form of the World Tree.

To get to the oak tree by which I regularly pray, one must go off the paved pathways. There is a track, but no doubt for many, it’s a hidden, unknown one. And yet it’s one that leads to the “Tree of Life.” All of this brings to mind the Beloved and Antlered One, “seeker of the forest’s hidden paths,” a powerful and beautiful way of acknowledging all the different, unorthodox ways that one can seek and find the Sacred.

– Michael Bayly
Excerpted from "The Prayer Tree"
The Wild Reed
September 18, 2017

See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
The Prayer Tree
Autumn by the Creek
"I Caught a Glimpse of a God"
In Autumn Light
Integrating Cernunnos, "Archetype of Sensuality and the Instinctual World"
Autumn Beauty
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn
Autumn Dance
Move Us, Loving God
O Sacred Season of Autumn
"Thou Hast Thy Music Too"
Autumn Hues (2011)
Autumn Hues (2015)
An Autumn Walk by Minnehaha Creek
Autumn Leaves
From the Falls to the River
Autumn Snow
Autumn . . . Within and Beyond (2016)

Related Off-site Links:
The Astounding Connection Between People and Trees Through Time – Jocelyn Mercado (Uplift, November 6, 2017).
How Trees Talk to Each Other and Share Gifts – Melissa Breyer (Tree Hugger, June 29, 2018).
A Biologist Believes That Trees Speak a Language We Can Learn – Ephrat Livni (Quartz, November 3, 2017).
Autumn BeautyThe Leveret (November 15, 2008).

Images: Michael J. Bayly.

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