Symbolizing the virtues of balance and harmony, the Celtic Tree of Life is today used in tattoos, jewelry designs, and tapestries. Let us understand the underlying significance and meaning of the symbol to get a better insight on the old culture of Celts.
Many cultures including that of the Celts show the concept of the Tree of Life. The Celtic Tree of Life is drawn with branches reaching the direction of the sky and with roots spreading out deep into the Earth to symbolize the belief in the connection between the Earth and the heaven. The Celtic Tree of Life is a representation of the forces of nature which come together to create harmony.
Celtic Tree Of Life Meaning
In Celtic culture, trees were of great importance and so there is no doubt that the Celtic Tree of Life held utmost importance for the Celts. The significance of trees was decided according to the geographic location and the intrinsic qualities. The Celts had a belief that the Tree of Life had special powers. According to the history, the tribe in Ireland would leave a tree in the center when clearing a land for their settlement and would call the tree the Tree of Life.
They took shelter, warmth, and food from the tree. It would also provide nourishment to insects, birds, and animals. This way, the tree was considered as a strong force taking care of lives on Earth. The Celts would settle only at those places where such a tree existed.
Celtic Tree Of Life Symbols
The meaning of the Celtic Tree symbol can be described in many ways. The balance, strength, and harmony existing in nature are represented the best by this tree. This balance is preserved by the connection of various forces prevalent in the entire universe.
The Celts associate the qualities of strength, wisdom, and longevity to the Tree of Life. These qualities are the cause behind worshiping of the tree. They also believed that cutting down the enemy’s holy tree would take away all the power from them.
The process of rebirth is also related to the Celtic Tree of Life. To mark the seasonal changes undergone by the tree, the Celts carried out different rituals. They described the changes in trees in the form of birth, death, and rebirth.
The Celtic Tree of Life symbolizes the connection between the lower and the upper worlds. Branches of the tree grow upwards reaching the heaven while roots penetrate deep into the Earth. The trunk remains on the plane of the Earth. The old beliefs say that gods living in the heaven used these trees of life as a means of communication with the human beings on the Earth. They associated the spiritual growth with the growth of the trees.
Some of these trees were believed to possess magical powers and strength and were able to carry messages to the divine world. They also believed that sacred trees could bless prosperity to the people.
History Of Sacred Trees
The Celts used to worship the oak tree and other trees for their special qualities. The oak tree was regarded as a life-asserting symbol due to the qualities like longevity. Other qualities associated with the oak tree include wisdom, strength, power, heritage, honor, stability and loyalty. The outstanding expanse and height of the oak tree also symbolize nobility and endurance. The Celts worshiped the oak tree for these valuable qualities it possessed.
The oak tree is generally related to a king who distributes the possessions among his subjects. The tree is believed to bestow prosperity on the humans and other life forms.
The Story Of Treochair
According to history, a giant named Treochair came down from the divine world and carried a tree branch with him. This branch had fruits of various plants. The story says that the giant jiggled the branch to let the fruits fall down.
The seeds of different fruits got planted in the center and in the corners of the Ireland. As the story proceeds, the trees growing from those five spots were regarded as sacred trees.
Knots Of The Tree Of Life
The Celtic Knots, referred to as the mystic knots, are endless knots and have no end or beginning. This design usually symbolizes timelessness or eternity of nature. Celtic knots are designed with branches and roots woven into each other to form endless knots.
Tapestries featuring the Celtic Tree symbols are gaining popularity in modern days too. Unique patterns and designs of wall decorations based on the Celtic Tree of Life are popular among buyers.
Blue and green color shades are used to represent the tree of life in tapestries. Such tapestries are sold at different prices depending on the kind of material used in making them.
Designs of the Tree of Life are also getting popular for tattoos. One of the most popularly used design is the Tree of Life Knot. Motifs of the tree of life are popular because of the positive energy associated with them. Trees are regarded in different cultures in the world. The motifs of harmony, balance, and unity symbolized by the Celtic Tree of Life gets universal importance. These virtues help us relive our glory of the past.