Tree of Life
For thousands of years the Tree of Life has been a symbol of life, fertility, immortality, connectivity, and order. Every single culture, both ancient and modern, has had their own interpretation, representation, and story of the Tree of Life. Some of the examples I will provide are of the Norse, Christian, Scientific, and Shamanic believes of the Tree of Life.
First, in the Norse culture, there is an apocalyptic scenario known asRagnarok.Ragnarokis the Norse equivalent to the Christian Book of Revelation. It is the destruction of Earth as we know it today.Ragnarokcan roughly be translated as the final destiny of the gods. Although I am not incredibly well versed in Norse mythology, I am, however, aware of theinfaminseRagnarok. This specific apocalyptic possibility was, as mostpaganisticmythologies, slightly altered by the recent Christian presence in the area at the time.
The story ofRagnarok, in its simplest form, is told as there being a great tree. The tree was known asMidgard. Midgard is seen as the Tree of Life. On the top of Midgard is a great Eagle. This Eagle represented Odin, the god of sky and gods, as well as all of the Gods inAsgard. At the bottom of the tree, however, is a terrible snake like creature. This creature was known as the Midgard Serpent. The Midgard Serpent represents the corruption and sins of man. DuringRagnarok, it is said that the Eagle and the Midgard Serpent would attack each other and the Midgard tree would be destroyed.
When Christian influence entered the area of theNordicpeople, they were not met with peace and ease. The Nordic people fought back and they fought for their gods. The Christian monks main concern was to convert as manyNorsepagans as possible. So as a result, The Christian monks created multiple stories to convert the Nordic pagans. One of the stories that the monks created was thatRagnarokhad already happened.
The monks told one story thatRagnarokhad already happened. They said that the Eagle and the Midgard serpent had already fought. The Monks said that in the fight all theNorsegods died. After the fight there was only one tree left and from that tree the last man and women came out of its trunk. By creating this story they made it seem thatRagnarokwas a type of prequel to Genesis. This story helped the monks convert thousands of Nordic people.
Second, the Christian perspective of the Tree of life is quite interesting. Many Christians view the Tree of Life as a holy Trinity. The Trinity incorporates the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.The Father represents the one God that created all things. The Son is of course Jesus Christ, who delivered us of our sins. The Holy Spirit is the power or essence ofGod and Jesus Christ.This trinity is thought of to be three parts of one being. The Tree of Life is mentioned within Genesis and Revelations. And out of the ground Lord God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden and the tree of knowledge of good and evil Genesis 2:9. This basically tells us that God created the Tree of Life along with the Tree of Knowledge the same time he created all other trees. However, God only told Adam and Eve not to eat from the Tree of Knowledge. He never mentioned that they can never eat from the Tree of life. In the middle of its street, an on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for healing of the nations Revelation 22:2. In this verse, it states that there are many Trees of Life rather than a single tree. Also the number twelve is important and should be notice; there are twelve months in a year as well as twelve apostles. Most Christians also believe that the Tree of Life, or maybe Trees of Life, represents the eternal life of God and the holy trinity.
Third, although Science is more focused on the physical aspect, it has helped us find the pattern of a tree within our cosmos. Through our quest of discovery in the universe, we have discovered that if you zoom out far away, to where each galaxy is a single spec of light, then our universe looks to take on the form of branches of a tree. I personally find this interesting because it shows that we are all in a tree. Just a bigger tree than we had originally thought.
Lastly, within the Shamanic teachings, the spirit world is often times divided into three separate realms; The Lower World, The Middle World, and the Upper World. These three different realms are positioned on the Tree of Life. The Lower world is located under the tree, where the roots are at. This is where the collective consciousness of all things is located. The Middle world is seen as the trunk of the Tree of Life. This is the spiritual aspect of our world represented within the spirit world. Finally, the Upper world, which is located above the branches of the Tree of Life and where the tree touches the sky, this is often times associated with heaven and this is where you can communicate with the many ascended masters and gods.
In Conclusion, The Tree of Life has been very prominent in almost every culture all around our Earth, whether they communicated or not. No one truly knows why this tree was so much a part of our ancestors lives. This powerful symbol of fertility, immortality, connectivity, and order was and probably will forever be a part of our society.
- "Genesis 2:9." Biblia Bilingue: Version Reina-Valera, 1960 = Bilingual Bible: New King James Version . Nashville, TN: Grupo Nelson, 2010. Pg. 2-g. 3. Print.
- Ingerman, Sandra, and Henry Barnard. Wesselman. Awakening to the Spirit World: The Shamanic Path of Direct Revelation . Boulder, CO: Sounds True, 2010. Print.
- Ingerman, Sandra. Shamanic Journeying: A Beginner's Guide . Boulder, CO: Sounds True, 2004. Print.
- "Ragnark." Wikipedia . Wikimedia Foundation, 04 May 2014. Web. 09 Apr. 2014. .
- "Revelation 22:2." Biblia Bilingue: Version Reina-Valera, 1960 = Bilingual Bible: New King James Version . Nashville, TN: Grupo Nelson, 2010. N. pag. Print.
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