Dante - Paradiso - The wood and trees
Type of Spiritual Experience
Because trees can represent both enlightened beings or gods and their virtues , they are often found on the top of hills or even on the top of or very high up the mountains. As such, one of the challenges found on the mountain may have been to preserve virtue when faced with adversity. Depending at which height they are found a grove of trees or even a single tree could thus represent a virtue found or sustained.
A description of the experience
Dante – The Divine Comedy
At this height, which is entirely clear,
In the living air, that motion can be felt
And makes the wood, because of its density, sound;
And the tree that is struck, has the property
Of impregnating the air with its virtue,
Which the air, in its revolution, diffuses;
And the land, according to the merits
Of itself, and its climate, conceives and produces
Different trees with different sorts of virtues.
To anyone who had heard this, it would not appear
To be a marvel on earth that some plants
Take root without any visible seed.
And you should know that this holy plateau
Where you are now, is full of all the seeds
And has fruits which are not to be gathered elsewhere