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Symbols - What does heaven look like

Sacred grove

The symbolism of a sacred grove is not that of the forest

Very complex symbolism applies here as sacred groves existed as real places in many early cultures.

In the spiritual  world  - A sacred grove is yet another Cell in the Matrix.  Within dreams  visions and out of body experiences  a sacred grove could be equivalent to a clearing in a forest.  In effect it was a symbolically safe place to rest and recuperate within the forest.  It is noticeable that when exploring forests, the sacred grove or clearing is often the place one met spirit helpers.

The second set of symbolism is derived simply from the symbolism of trees in general and wood.  It can thus represent a living being with its body, soul and Higher spirit.  The type of tree then becomes key as each tree has its own symbolism – oak, myrtle, cedar and so on.  Thus a sacred grove is symbolically a group of sacred or semi-divine people – a group of ‘gods’.

The third symbolism is then just an extension of this idea.  Instead of semi-divine and living, the sacred grove can be a collection of gods who are not living and thus ‘in heaven’ – in the aether level.  In this respect they can thus represent the Planets.

In the physical world - The fourth symbolism can derive from the fact that spiritual experiences can be obtained in natural places – especially woods – see Communing with nature.

Thus a physically existent sacred grove, as opposed to one in legends, myths, visions, dreams and so on – might well have been a place where someone had had a spiritual experience.  It was a way of indicating that the place was effective at giving access to the spiritual world.

It was not uncommon to see spirit beings in woods, reinforcing the belief that a tree had a spirit.  Given that many trees are used by fungi or shelter fungi and mushrooms and these two forms of ‘food’ when eaten may also provide a spiritual experience, there are numerous common links that we can see building here.  Birch trees for example, are a common place to find amanita muscaria fungi.

The sacredness of trees and the universality of the understanding of a grove of trees as symbolic is not just a Greek symbol. 

Osun-Osogbo or Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove, for example,  is a sacred forest along the banks of the Oshun River just outside the city of Osogbo, Osun State, Nigeria.  The Osun-Osogbo Grove is among the last of the sacred forests which usually adjoin the edges of most Yoruba cities before extensive urbanization.  In recognition of its global significance and its cultural value, the Sacred Grove was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.

I’m afraid there is also a last symbolism deriving from the activity of sexual stimulation.  A sacred grove is pubic hair!

Observations

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