The Tree of Life
Tree of Life Cluster Pendant with green accents The tree of life is such an evocative symbol that is neither masculine nor feminine. It is revered by all faiths and seems to tug at the spirit, reminding us that we're connected to the earth, to the sky, and to all mankind. It's a primitive symbol that can be found in every culture, on almost every continent. Maybe it's because it's such a simple symbol, one of the first things most children draw, something that we all recognize and connect An 1847 depiction of the Norse Yggdrasil as described in the Icelandic Prose Edda by Oluf Oulfsen Bagge[/caption] with, or maybe it's because trees are life sustaining, creating the very oxygen we breathe and the fruit that we enjoy. Perhaps it harkens back to our primate nature that we found comfort in the security of trees, where we were safe from saber tooth tigers. Whatever it is, the tree of life speaks to us. The tree of life is a sacred symbol in most of the world's religions. Zoroastrians, Jews, Christians, Muslims, Bahai's, Hindus, Buddhists, Taoists, Mormons, Pagans, Wiccans, and many Native American tribes all have a tree of life of some sort in their traditions. The Celtic Tree of Life or Crann Bethadh in Gaelic is one of the more prominent ancient Druid symbols that found it's way into modern iconography. The Druids believed that the tree of life was a link between heaven and earth, the Keith Jack Sterling Silver and 18k gold Tree of Life pendant[/caption] dead and the living. The ancient Celts worshiped trees and recognized that trees provided shelter, food, firewood, warmth, etc. In Celtic culture, it was forbidden to clear an entire area of trees and they would always leave one sacred tree standing in the center of their communities. The Celts believed that trees were their ancestors and the most sacred tree of all, the oak, called "daur" (root word of door) was believed to be the Axis Mundi or center of the earth. The word Druid literally means "Oak Seeing" or "Oak Knower" . Whatever your heritage, religion, politics, race or gender may be, we are all united by the tree of life. When you wear a tree of life necklace, you carry a link to all of human history, to life, death, the earth and sky next to your heart. It's comforting. It's home.