The Yggdrasil

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Forums -> Norse Paganism -> The Yggdrasil

The Yggdrasil
Post # 1

Good day.

So I was going through some symbols;and then I discovered that Yggdrasil is somehow similar to 'The Tree of Life' in Kabbalah. Is it?

In the Norse Lore,The Yggdrasil is the tree of life and its branches stretch out to the nine realms.

In Kabbalism, 'The tree of Life' comes from the 'Flower of Life' which describes the path to god.

Is this the only difference? Can you elaborate? Thank you.


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Re: The Yggdrasil
Post # 2
There are references to Odin in reproductions dated long before the Christian era. In fact, there are clear references to Odin (and all of his mythology) dating back to the 3rd century. Some archaeological studies still suggest that the Norse belief is much older than this, with origins long before Christianity.
The point is that, just like Druidism, traditions were disseminated orally. In the case of the faith Asatru Vanatur, in fact, the first written records part of the seventh century through Roman works.

Although Kabbalists believe that Kabbalah was transmitted by God Himself to Moses, several historians agree that its origin is Nordic, based on the legend of Odin. Coincidentally, the Chapel of Roslin, considered by many to be a true Masonic Temple of the fifteenth century, has the legend of Odin with its sacred tree illustrated in the so-called "Apprentice Column."

It is important to highlight, for example, that "Thor is not Geburah," but one of the facets of this sphere manifested in various ways over time-space-culture. As in countless other cultures, the Tree of Life is present in all the archetypes of the gods.
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Re: The Yggdrasil
By: Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 3
he Tree of Life also known as Axis Mundi is much older idea than any organised religion and path. It is probably as old as the biological and structural development of the human brain. In many shamanistic societies trees are sacred and they do represent bridges between the three worlds, so does the shaman. Often, Asian shamans were put to rest in the branches of trees or in their base.

Other religions as Hinduism talk about the Samsara Tree. Mani yogi and gurus meditate at the base of a trees for very long time, and we do know that there is the legend of Buddah doing so to achieve spiritual awakening.

Tree of Life in Kabbalah is not seen as an actual tree. It is a glyph (set of symbols), which has been organised in the form of a tree. It shows how emanations of different forces and aspects withing Divine start to manifest from less denser to much more dense levels of existence, until they reach The Kingdom (Planet Earth). Kabbalist believe that the Genesis is just a story, which has a hidden meaning. In fact, they believe that everything within Torah has a hidden meaning and that what was revealed to Moses and other prophets was the tip of the iceberg, but many never decoded that hidden meaning. The meaning could be revealed mainly through very rigorous recitation of the Torah and spending hours and days in meditation. We can see similar idea in the teaching of the New Testament, where Jesus spoke to people in fables and stories to teach them something, but very few understood their true meaning. When asked by his disciples why he is telling these people stories he answered that to not everyone is given the power to see and to hear behind them and that who has eye to see the truth and to hear it will do so with the divine guidance.

There are many branches within Kabbalah, but all of them are based on the Zohar and Zohar is based on the Torah, before that A Book of Formation existed that must have been 5 000 years old. Zohar is a massive. It is as big as a small library because it has 22 big volumes. It has been attributed to Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai. According to the believe he spend 13 years in a cave meditating and chanting the Torah. When he emerged, he looked so different and so miserably physically his father in law did not recognise him. He was all covered with red soil and mud. However, the written book only appeared much later and many people believe that it was attributed to this ancient person just to give it more spiritual value. However, even if the person that started printing the book wrote it himself, he did it very short period of time. His wife testified that she never seen any ancient manuscript that he copied from, but he would be in his study for days and hours and would come out with massive amount of pages. Most people safely assumed that this information was channeled through him. Due to the fact that the 22 massive volumes appeared in literally no time.

It has nothing to do with Norse mythology rather than the usage of a common ancient symbol, which again existed in the oral traditions of ancient tribes much before any of the described above faiths. It is a primal example of syncretism. Tribes moved around and spread their stories and legends even though at the beginning it was an oral tradition mainly.

I rather see the Flower of life the path from God to the Kingdom. Because it starts with a single dot and then it develops like a flower. Most life forms develop this way biologically. There is also the flower of death, which is actually very geometrical and very precise assembly of proteins, which reverses the process and the cell self-destructs and dies. Where the whole reverses back to single simple elements, which are then reused to create again.

The Tree of Life shows the process of which the souls fell down to the Kingdom and how the Kingdom came to be. Kabbalists believe that Divine is equally masculine and equally feminine, which puts them aside from the Abrahamic religions. They also believe that at the beginning human souls were part of the Divine, but they could not know anything by themselves and or earn anything because all they knew came from divine and all they needed came from there as well. So as they started to lament that they receive everything for nothing. They felt ashamed and lamented even more. The more they felt this way the more they separated themselves from the Divine. They wanted to know divine by indirect means. At some point, Divine decided to grant their wish and Keter divided itself on Chokmah and Binah. The first one being the male archetype on very subtle level and Binah being the female aspect on that level. Binah means understanding and Chokmah means wisdom. Binah is often described as massive devoid dark sea(not physical sea) and Chockmah is seen as a beam/pillar of light. This beam of light needed a vessel to be contained. However, for it to be contained on any level it meant that this was the means of an eventual end. Binah the giver of the form is also the giver of the death. Which is why she is often referred as the Dark Mother and The Black Sea of Tears. The rest of the sephirot repeat this formula on less dense levels. Universe repeats that model via visible matter, light/energy and dark matter and dark energy. Dark matter traps the energy and condenses it and provides a scaffolding for the gravitational forces to start working and condensing the matter and hold it together. Thus the souls needed a vessel to becomes wise and to understand Divine in indirect way. Of course later, the souls started to lament that Divine was way too hard to reach and even non existing. But the idea is that whoever restricts the most their human nature is going to achieve this spiritual awareness. The Tree of Life is the Tree of Knowledge, but whoever eat its fruit shall die, because in order to learn anything you have to have a form a means of restriction, but whoever has been born has to die. Most mystics and shamans of many faiths and cultures have expressed that one does not achieve enlightenment , without passing through many ordeals of any sorts and type. In Tarot this is called the Journey of the Hero. You start from zero The Fool and reach to the 22 The World. But the Fool contains the entire World and the the World contains the Fool. Often, the Hero goes through form of spiritual, physical or ego death to discover that the World is within him so does the Divine. Not that I would recommend anyone risking their health and sanity to achieve it.

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