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Symbols - What does heaven look like

Cedar

Cedars take on the symbolism of the tree.  The cedar tree, however,  was always the 'Tree of the gods' thus important trees!  One suggestion I came across is that the name of cedar was derived from the word "deodar" itself derived from modern Indian language derivatives of the Sanskrit name 'devdar', meaning "timber of the gods".  It is the national tree of Pakistan and is mentioned several times in the Bible, for example:

  • "The priest shall take cedarwood and hyssop and scarlet stuff, and cast them into the midst of the burning of the heifer" (Numbers 19:6).
  • "The righteous flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar in Lebanon" (Psalm 92:12).
  • "I will put in the wilderness the cedar, the acacia, the myrtle, and the olive" (Isaiah 41: 19).
  • "Behold, I will liken you to a cedar in Lebanon, with fair branches and forest shade" (Ezekiel 31:3).
  • "I destroyed the Amorite before them, whose height was like the height of the cedars" (Amos 2:9).
  • "The trees of the LORD are well watered, the cedars of Lebanon that he planted." (Isaiah 2:13 NIV).
  • [King Solomon made] cedar as plentiful as the sycamore-fig trees in the foothills. (1 Kings 10:27, NIV, excerpt)

Cedars of Lebanon were also mentioned in the Epic of Gilgamesh.

The Cedar’s symbolism derives from the properties of its wood which is durable (decay-resistant) and highly scented and resistant to weather.  Thus there is the association of spiritual [scent/perfume] immortality [durability].

Cedar wood and cedar oil is also known to be a natural repellent to moths. This specific use of cedar is mentioned in The Iliad (Book 24), referring to the cedar-roofed or lined storage chamber where Priam goes to fetch treasures to be used as ransom.  It is thus a protector of spiritual treasures against ‘moths’ - souls who seek to destroy them –  a natural guardian of the spiritual world.

Cedar is also used for the tops of musical instruments like guitars and has unique tonal qualities.  Thus there is also a connection with the Word and musical instruments.

And cedar wood is used in incenses or smoke related ceremonies to invoke spiritual experiences.

Observations

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