Newest Review: ... celebrating Christmas, and the evergreen's unique form is one of the first trees that they draw. Yet how do we know the Pine from other eve... more
Who Sings Now? ~ a second voice from the forest
Member Name: QuinnElaine
Date: 21/07/09, updated on 22/07/09 (41 review reads)
Disadvantages: gaining wisdom can be painful
"I herald the returning of Light and Life
upon the season's wheel.
secrets of purification, healing,
and prosperity I reveal.
releasing your Shadow
and healing grief
are lessons I stitch with my slender leaf."
"If you imagine someone who is brave enough to withdraw all his projections, then you get an individual who is conscious of a pretty thick shadow. Such a man has saddled himself with new problems and conflicts. He has become a serious problem to himself, as he is now unable to say that they do this or that, they are wrong, and they must be fought against. He lives in the "House of the Gathering." Such a man knows that whatever is wrong in the world is in himself, and if he only learns to deal with his own shadow he has done something real for the world. He has succeeded in shouldering at least an infinitesimal part of the gigantic, unsolved social problems of our day." ~ Jung (1938). Psychology and Religion: West and East. P.140
Evergreen conifers found within the Family Pinaceae are cedar, hemlock, fir, spruce, pine and larch. These evergreens are often the first trees that children in the U.S. learn to identify as separate from other kinds of trees. Although they might typically all be referred to as Pine, each carries their own unique message as well as the lessons inherint to the Family. Most of us are never taught the subtle differences that distinguish one species of Pinaceae from another, nor is the study of trees a popular or glamorous area of academia for adults.
Aside from being uniquely green when all other trees shed their leaves, evergreens are typically brought into homes every Christmas season, even by people who aren't Christians! Every child loves celebrating Christmas, and the evergreen's unique form is one of the first trees that they draw. Yet how do we know the Pine from other evergreens?
There are about 115 species of pine around the world. Pines are distinguished from all other trees by having pairs of uncovered seeds on their female cones, and needle-like slender leaves arranged in bundles of 2-5 with a permanent or deciduous sheath at their bases. Pines have adapted themselves to grow in challenging areas. Dry, sandy, or poor soils, bogs, extremes of cold and altitude do not deter the Pine! Considered a "pioneer", this tree can begin the reclamation project the Plant Nation is always in the process of around the world in barren landscapes.
These Diplomats can teach us how to go into difficult situations and negotiate with all the principals to achieve a more beneficial situations for everyone. Pines, especially White Pines (the focus here), are associated with peace, but these Teachers also have connections to the following concepts: prosperity, healing after surgery, renewal of energy, courage, hex-breaking, strength, purification and cleansing (especially guilt), fertility, and leadership.
Tall trees, they often indicate an ability to "see ahead" or over long distances. Known as Ailm in Ogham, Pine is the "sweetest of woods". Pine cones can be used to gauge weather as they open or close with changes in humidity. Several varieties of pine nuts are a potential food source and pine needles are an excellent source of vitamin C when steeped in hot water. Pine was an early wood for the making of boats, and favored as the ridge pole of dwellings from a variety of cultures. It has been an emblem of fidelity and wedding torches were made of pine according to Virgil. Pine was also a favorite for coffins for many years. In Russia, the coffin was often draped with pine or fir boughs as it was being carried to the cemetary.
There is a curious mix of Life and Death in the symbology of the Pine which, like other evergreens, has often symbolize the perpetuity of Life. For all it's lessons on peace, temperate leadership and diplomacy, the Pine has a strong connection to the deities Pan and Bacchus, both known more for their abandoned reveleries. At first glance, such dichotomy might make the Pine seem unbalanced. Running to extremes and especially suppressing or denying one's Shadow Self are potential signs of unbalanced Pine energy. When we realize that Pine is an enduring symbol of natural magic and the cycle of immortality (Life Death and Rebirth), we see this Teacher with new wisdom and begin to discover the Harmony inherint in all Pine lessons. Pine is a Wounded Healer amongst the Tree Teachers, and some exploration of the highs and lows of this archetype should be undertaken by any who feel called by this Teacher.
Amber is the fossilized resin of ancient Pines, and makes a good balancing energy for those called by a Pine Teacher. Other Teachers that could be balancing energies might include: fire, fern, squirrel, chipmunk, black bear, pine warbler, pinyon jay, red crossbill, red cockaded woodpecker, mississippi kite, brown-headed nuthatch, spider, ant, pine bark beetle, pine tip moth, european pine shoot moth, the pine mushroom, and the infamous Amanita Muscaria or Fly Agaric mushroom (perhaps best known for inspiring Lewis Carol)
Pine trees are excellent companions if you are looking to release stress, guilt, or negativity, if you are seeking peace and clarity through an extreme or difficult situation, those seeking healing, or those who would like to develop their leadership abilities. Simply sitting beneath the branches of a willing pine tree will help wash away these life pollutants. I had a great Pine tree friend that I spent many hours sitting with, and he was always willing to help wash away the negative build up of my life. Without the peaceful clarity he helped me to achieve, I do not believe that I would have made as many good choices in the extremely difficult situation I was dealing with at the time. Years later, and I find myself living amidst a council of Pine and Hemlock; a whole new array of friendly faces that are quickly becoming familiar and beloved Teachers!
"A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in." ~Greek Proverb
Key concepts: Peace, Release, Renewal, Purification, Forethought, Leadership, Healing Grief, Diplomacy
Associated Gods, Goddesses or Mythic figures: Dionysus, Adonis, Jesus, Astarte, Attis, Pan, and Poseidon.
Summary: "Life is just a chance to grow a soul." A. Powell Davies