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Sacred Celtic Trees - Part Three
© Copyright Jan Reid-Lennox. All Rights Reserved.
The sacred Celtic trees are rich in mythological history and have inspired many traditions in folklore. The Cedar, Elm and Fir, are the third in the list of sacred Celtic trees.
For the ancient Celtic culture, trees were an important asset to their way of life. They provided shelter, firewood, tools, weapons, dyes and medicines; were important to their ancient rituals, and the mythological meanings are still sometimes applicable in societies around the world, today.
In Celtic traditions, the Cedar tree was also known as the ‘Tree of Life’ (plus Ash), although the Cedar tree symbolism was rather ironic, as the oil was used as a tool of the battlefields. In wartime the heads of enemies were kept as trophies and preserved with the oil of the Cedar tree. Another belief however, is that the Cedar tree has the ability to connect people to the universal energies of the Earth, which compliments the name symbolism.
Although a scared tree of the Celts, the Elm has traditionally been regarded as unfriendly to humanity, and although allowed to ‘roam free’ in wide open spaces, usually not grown too close to dwellings. Considered a tree of shadows, the Elm was sometimes planted in certain areas as a warning to people to not venture too close.
The Fir tree is a tree of seasonal festivity. Fir trees were brought indoors during certain traditional celebrations to ensure that some green-growing energy remained in the home. This predates the custom of bringing in a tree at Christmas time. The Fir tree was also often used for the Maypole and as a result Fir tree cones are considered to be ancient symbols of fertility.