Heathens, Pagans and Witches discussion

104 views
Magic(k) > Druidic Tree Magic

Comments (showing 1-38 of 38) (38 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Aaron, Moderator (new)

Aaron Carson | 1212 comments description

There are a number of druidic spells in which the sacred trees are used in some fashion. I thought we could make a catalogue of them here.


message 2: by Aaron, Moderator (new)

Aaron Carson | 1212 comments Beech acorns are eaten to achieve knowledge.
Blackthorn thorns are used to pierce effigies.
Sleeping under a Hawthorn could take you to the fairy kingdom.
Burning Poplar aids in astral projection.
Ash leaves are placed under the pillow to facilitate prophetic dreams.


message 3: by Aaron, Moderator (new)

Aaron Carson | 1212 comments Flutes made of Elder are used to invoke spirits, and control them.


message 4: by Nell (new)

Nell Grey (nellgrey) | 1681 comments Love the tree, Aaron :)

There's quite a bit about tree magic in Tree Wisdom: The Definitive Guidebook to the Myth, Folklore, and Healing Power of Trees. I read it some time ago, but haven't time to look through at the moment - maybe later.

Tree Wisdom The Definitive Guidebook to the Myth, Folklore, and Healing Power of Trees by Jacqueline Memory Paterson


message 5: by Nell (last edited Feb 13, 2013 07:08AM) (new)

Nell Grey (nellgrey) | 1681 comments Oh dear, just lost my post. Here 'tis again. From Tree Wisdom above.

Hazel rods were used to divine suitable places for magical workings.

and: In the Book of St Albans, we are told that it is possible to become invisible 'as if we had eaten fern-seed' by 'carrying a hazel rod a fathom and a half long, and by inserting a green hazel twig into it in a particular manner'.

The Book of St. Albans

Here's" a link to a copy of the original.


message 6: by Nell (new)

Nell Grey (nellgrey) | 1681 comments According to Tree Wisdom, the druids carved magical images from ash roots. These were believed to be as powerful as mandrake.

Their wands were also made of ash, and were decorated with sunwise spirals.


message 7: by Nell (new)

Nell Grey (nellgrey) | 1681 comments Alder whistles enticed air elementals and whistled up the wind.

Willow leaves are used to attract love.


message 8: by Old-Barbarossa (new)

Old-Barbarossa | 589 comments Is this not more folk magic than druid lore?


message 9: by Nell (last edited Feb 15, 2013 05:40AM) (new)

Nell Grey (nellgrey) | 1681 comments Old-Barbarossa wrote: "Is this not more folk magic than druid lore?"

I was careful to post only the instances given by the author as druid lore in Tree Wisdom, although I didn't check her sources. There is so much of all kinds of tree magic there.

It's likely too that some folk magic is a memory of (or developed from) druid lore.


message 10: by Aaron, Moderator (new)

Aaron Carson | 1212 comments There were a couple of Fantasy novels I read, which got me fascinated with druidic tree lore, and I was surprised by how well researched they were.

Phantastes/Lilith by George MacDonald The Ill-Made Mute (The Bitterbynde, #1) by Cecilia Dart-Thornton


message 11: by [deleted user] (new)

From the White Goddess (Amergin's song):

"God speaks and says:

I am the stag of seven tines.
Over the flooded world.
I am borne by the wind.
I descend in tears like dew, I lie glittering,
I fly aloft like a griffon to my nest on the cliff,
I bloom among the loveliest flowers,
I am both the oak and the lightening that blasts it.

I embolden the spearman,
I teach the councillors their wisdom,
I inspire the poets,
I rove the hills like a ravening boar,
I roar like the winter sea,
I return again like the receding wave.
Who but I can unfold the secrets of the unhewn dolmen?"

The alphabet:

The consonants:

B (Beth-Birch)
L (Luis-Rowan)
N (Nion-Ash)
F (Fearn-Alder)
S (Saille-Willow)
U (Uath-Hawthorn)
D (Duir-Oak)
T (Tinne -Holly or Scarlet Oak)
C (Coll-Hazel)
M (Muin-Vine)
G (Gort-Ivy)
P (Peth or Pethboc-Dwarf Elder)
R (Ruis-Elder)

The vowels:

A (Ailm-Silver Fir)
O (Onn-Furze)
U (Ur-Heather
E (Eadha-White Poplar)
I (Idho-Yew)

The tree calendar: thirteen lunar months and one dead day ("Who but I can unfold the secrets of the unhewn dolmen?" and as in "He travelled for a year and a day.")

The new years begins with Beth, birch. D and T are the Oak King and Holly Knight, they are also the "Lilly white boys clothed in green oh", in "Green Grow The Rushes. "

Interestingly the word door comes from Duir, as doors were traditionally made from oak.

I think this is a subject I could spend a lifetime on. So much druidic knowledge is lost, and so much is now conjecture.

The Celtic Wisdom Of Trees: Mysteries, Magic And Medicine The Celtic Wisdom Of Trees Mysteries, Magic And Medicine by Jane Gifford. Also I agree that The White Goddess: A Historical Grammar of Poetic Myth The White Goddess A Historical Grammar of Poetic Myth by Robert Graves is a good source for the old tree calendar.


message 12: by Aaron, Moderator (new)

Aaron Carson | 1212 comments It's interesting to me that Elm doesn't make the Alphabet. Was it not native to the British isles?


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

It doesn't make the alphabet, but it is in Ireland's Brehon Law, as one of the seven peasant trees. "Trees were divided into four categories with a scale of fines for their unlawful felling that diminished in severity according to the category." R. Graves. The White Goddess.

Brehon Law:
http://www.courts.ie/Courts.ie/librar...


message 14: by Aaron, Moderator (new)

Aaron Carson | 1212 comments Wow, that is cool.


message 15: by [deleted user] (new)

Isn't it? :D


message 16: by Wren [t(he)y] (new)

Wren [t(he)y] (wrenreviewer) | 150 comments Is there any use for maple trees?


message 17: by Aaron, Moderator (new)

Aaron Carson | 1212 comments Sadly their not on the list of Druidic trees, because Druidry originated in the British Isles and France. You'd probably be able to find more useful information in your area. I'm sure that all trees have magical properties of some sort, but I'm a tree worshipper.


message 18: by Holly (new)

Holly (Goldikova) My family is really big on tree magic; I am named after one of the Druidic sacred trees, and so is my daughter.

We have added the maple to our list of sacred trees; it is the predominate species on our property and we are always so thankful for the maple syrup they provide.


message 19: by Aaron, Moderator (new)

Aaron Carson | 1212 comments Can you share some of the rituals you do with Maple for Julia?


message 20: by Holly (new)

Holly (Goldikova) Julia;
Sorry I can't be of more help, we are not very ritualistic. Before we tap the tree we ask for permission to collect sap and afterward we thank the tree. Throughout the year we pour buckets of water soluble fertilizer at the trees roots and keep them trimmed for good health, and we talk to our trees when we do this, telling them how beautiful they are and how much we appreciate them.

I know that the trees have no ears and the neighbors think we are crazy but harmless......however, this interaction is good for us, so we don't worry about what the neighbors might think.

If we were to trim the tree in order to get wood for our personal use I would devise a ritual for it; likewise if we had to remove the tree entirely.


Peejay Who Once Was Minsma | 336 comments I have a question for this thread, if anyone's paying attention. A few years back I had a pussy willow sprout in the back yard. It's been very happy, is about 12 or 15 feet high at this point, and I'm quite partial to it.

I know willows are sacred in many traditions, and there are pussy willows traditions in China and Eastern Europe, but I'm wondering if anyone knows any magic traditions centering around them? Since the tree volunteered in my yard I've long thought of it as my own personal sacred tree.


message 22: by Little (new)

Little Miss Esoteric (LittleMissEsoteric) | 1114 comments It's the sacred tree of the Great Goddess and of witches in general. Wicca comes from the word willow, as does witch. It is central to magic tradition. In Grave's Tree Alphabet the willow month is Saille (the tree calendar is not a true relic unfortunately. Much creative license going on there).


Peejay Who Once Was Minsma | 336 comments Little wrote: "It's the sacred tree of the Great Goddess and of witches in general. Wicca comes from the word willow, as does witch. It is central to magic tradition. In Grave's Tree Alphabet the willow month is ..."

I knew that willows, especially white willows, were a sacred Celtic/Goddess tree, but I didn't know if pussy willows fell into the same category. At any rate, I'm taking it as a blessing to have one. :-)


message 24: by Little (new)

Little Miss Esoteric (LittleMissEsoteric) | 1114 comments I'm not sure about pussy willows either. Agreed about the blessing. Best to you Peejay. :)


message 25: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Joyce | 78 comments deleted user wrote: "...Ireland's Brehon Law, as one of the seven peasant trees. "Trees were divided into four categories with a scale of fines for their unlawful felling that di..."

Thanks for the Brehon Law link!!!! I've long been fascinated by the Bardic Tradition. I've written an article (free) about one aspect of its influence on the theater http://www.oestarapublishing.com/bard....

Also in my newest novel, Foreshadow, what I know of the bardic tradition I used as the base for the magic and culture of the story.

When I had the priviledge to visit Ireland I bought a copy of the full Tain Bo Culhain at New Grange. Most places sell only a kid-proofed version as though it is tale for children. What a wonderful book.


message 26: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Joyce | 78 comments Aaron wrote: "
Phantastes/Lilith by George MacDonald[bookcover:..."


I read the Ill-Made Mute. Were the sequels ever written? If so, do you the name of the next in the series?


message 27: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Joyce | 78 comments Aaron wrote: "

"
Did you draw the tree? Great drawing!


message 28: by Aaron, Moderator (last edited Jul 06, 2014 02:22PM) (new)

Aaron Carson | 1212 comments Yes I drew the tree, it was my imagined version of a Blackthorn, before I actually saw one.

The Next in the Bitterbynde series is called Lady of the Sorrows.

The Lady of the Sorrows (The Bitterbynde, #2) by Cecilia Dart-Thornton

Oh and thank you, yes I like the whorls on the bark.


message 29: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 68 comments Aaron,

By the way, I have the book, the White Goddess

;)


message 30: by Old-Barbarossa (new)

Old-Barbarossa | 589 comments Sarah wrote: "Aaron,

By the way, I have the book, the White Goddess

;)"


Then please don't read it!
Grrr! Snarl! Gnash!
See? I've started again!


message 31: by Little (new)

Little Miss Esoteric (LittleMissEsoteric) | 1114 comments Old-Barbarossa wrote: "Sarah wrote: "Aaron,

By the way, I have the book, the White Goddess

;)"

Then please don't read it!
Grrr! Snarl! Gnash!
See? I've started again!"


:D:D


message 32: by Little (new)

Little Miss Esoteric (LittleMissEsoteric) | 1114 comments Sarah wrote: "Aaron,

By the way, I have the book, the White Goddess

;)"


I should explain Sarah that we have had a lot of discussions about Grave's book due to his creative license in recording fantasy instead of facts. It was once a favourite of mine and I can tell you now I was very disappointed to find out it is mostly a load of crock.


message 33: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 68 comments Thanks O-B, Little,

Aaron & I live in the same town & meet from time to time, so he actually told me about this situation.


message 34: by Old-Barbarossa (new)

Old-Barbarossa | 589 comments Sarah wrote: "Thanks O-B, Little,

Aaron & I live in the same town & meet from time to time, so he actually told me about this situation."


So you plotted to troll me! Outrageous!!!
;) Well played...but you could have stayed quiet and watched me rant and howl about the text.


message 35: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 68 comments No, sorry, Aaron didn't tell me till after I'd written it. Sorry, for miscommunication time-wise. ;)


message 36: by Little (new)

Little Miss Esoteric (LittleMissEsoteric) | 1114 comments Old-Barbarossa wrote: "Sarah wrote: "Thanks O-B, Little,

Aaron & I live in the same town & meet from time to time, so he actually told me about this situation."

So you plotted to troll me! Outrageous!!!
;) Well played...."


Why didn't I think of that? :)


message 37: by Jule (new)

Jule | 16 comments Excuse my ignorance but have the Ogham Set,got anthing to do with druid tree magic?. These seem to crop up alot in the books i read.


message 38: by Little (new)

Little Miss Esoteric (LittleMissEsoteric) | 1114 comments "Ogham /ˈɒɡəm/[1] (Modern Irish [ˈoːm] or [ˈoːəm]; Old Irish: ogam [ˈɔɣam]) is an Early Medieval alphabet used primarily to write the early Irish language (in the so-called "orthodox" inscriptions, 4th to 6th centuries), and later the Old Irish language (so-called scholastic ogham, 6th to 9th centuries). There are roughly 400 surviving orthodox inscriptions on stone monuments throughout Ireland and western Britain; the bulk of them are in the south of Ireland, in Counties Kerry, Cork and Waterford.[2] The largest number outside of Ireland is in Pembrokeshire in Wales.[3]

The vast majority of the inscriptions consist of personal names.

According to the High Medieval Bríatharogam, names of various trees can be ascribed to individual letters.

The etymology of the word ogam or ogham remains unclear. One possible origin is from the Irish og-úaim 'point-seam', referring to the seam made by the point of a sharp weapon.[4]
The earliest inscriptions in ogham date to about the 4th century AD,[5] but James Carney believes its invention is rather within the 1st century BC."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ogham

The tree calendar was apparently, according to Graves "a genuine relic of Druidism orally transmitted down the centuries. It is said to have been latterly used for divination only and consists of five vowels and thirteen consonants."

However, although there were sacred trees, it seems the tree calendar, like Grave's book The White Goddess, was based on much invention, and was not a true relic at all.

Refer to Stalking the Goddess by Mark Carter for details on The White Goddess.


back to top

unread topics | mark unread


Books mentioned in this topic

Tree Wisdom: The definitive guidebook to the myth, folklore and healing power of Trees (other topics)
The Book of St. Albans (other topics)
Phantastes/Lilith (other topics)
The Ill-Made Mute (other topics)
The Celtic Wisdom Of Trees: Mysteries, Magic And Medicine (other topics)
More...

Authors mentioned in this topic

Mark Carter (other topics)