Wander, Weaver, Guide & Spirit Keeper of Oak
Hello Tree Kin,
We begin a new yearly cycle through the Celtic Tree Calendar here on the Tree Whisper blog. We began last year with the birth of the website during the Oak tree cycle (7th lunation). Rather than hashing up the old blog post on The Wild Wisdom of Oak I thought I could walk a new path with you all through the woodland of the Celtic Trees. You will by now know that I am in the very early stages of creating my first deck Tarot of the Tree Whisperer (or Tree Whisper Tarot, I haven't decided yet) and I thought we could explore a little of the pathways of my new tarot project through the courts of the deck as we also journey this year with the trees of the Celtic Tree Calendar.
The suits or tribes as I enjoy thinking of them, will echo the seasons Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter, and the rhythms of these cycles found in the Druidic tradition. They will be amplified energetically through the elements of Air, Fire, Water and Earth. In the courts of the suits we will meet the tribe elders, the Wanderer, Weaver, Guide and Spirit Keeper. Traditionally Page, Knight, Queen and King in RWS Tarot. These tribe elders will act as teachers through which our current tree cycle will inform our moon month forecast. I do really enjoy the traditional tarot symbolism of Swords, Wands, Cups and Pentacles, there is something so rich an tactile for me in this familiarity. And while I love nature themed tarot decks, when the suit names are changed this creates a barrier in memory for me and I find it confusing. The suits and associations of Tarot of the Tree Whisperer are as follows:
Swords Wands Cups Pentacles
Spring Summer Autumn Winter
Air Fire Water Earth
East South West North
Sunrise Mid-day Sunset Night
Birth /Youth Adulthood Maturity Old Age/Death
Elders (courts) Wanderer Weaver Guide Spirit Keeper
Air Fire Water Earth
In addition to the Elders within the elemental association of the Tribes, the Elders also carry an elemental amplification Wanderer - Air, Weaver - Fire, Guide - Water, Spirit Keeper - Earth. So the Weaver of Wands is Airy Fire and the Spirit Keeper of Cups is Earthy Water. The Elders also assume in subtle ways the other corresponding associations aligned with those elements. For instance, the Weaver of Swords will represent youth in inspiration, thought and ideas and the Spirit keeper of Cups will represent great age and ancient wisdom in relational depth.
Story of the Elders
In the woodlands and wild places of enchanted lands we meet the Wanderers, they are travellers, pilgrims, explorers and pioneers of their tribes. You may find them on the edge of the woodland, solitary beings traveling the hills and the heather heaths, high atop the misty moors or clinging to the north face of a mountain. These are the curious and brave who seek wisdom through lived experience on the edge. They are inspired and their spirits shine bright with possibilities, potential and wonder. They are the seekers, the risk takers and dare dreamers. The youth of their kin they are full of great ideas, motivation and enthusiasm. They have met many interesting beings on their travels and have heard many exciting and mysterious stories. Wanderers hold the power of imagination. They harness inspiration and direct it where needed. They also see very clearly wood for the trees, they inspire the truth to be revealed through dispelling illusion.
Weavers are those who are wise and widely recognised within their communities as the wizards and witches of their tribes. We find them anywhere there are natural power points near earth and water. They attune to high frequencies, strong currents of energy and potent and clean magnetic fields. They may be solitary trees or reside in small groups or sacred groves. They love to occupy sacred wells, fresh water springs, lay lines and root near standing stones. They are powerful designers. They weave fine and elaborate tapestries of the cycles of life. And even support the natural environment to evolve in a way that creates diversity, balance and harmony. They are architects and artists. Each thread they weave is intoned with spells, intentions and incantations. They work with all of the elements equally, and have the abilities to move in-between the folds of light, from the physical worlds into the elemental realms. With this ability they can also move between the past, present and future.
The Guides are the nurturers of the tribe, they are care takers, nourishing all life that surrounds them. Other trees, tree nurseries, dying trees, trees that require healing and tree stumps. They support all plant life above and below soil. And they nurture and animal life that visits their domain. Animals will often seek out Guides for medicines. They embody abundant life force and this replenishes and sustains their tribe and the wider natural environment. They are found anywhere from deep in the woodlands, to small community groves and parks, and they are usually in the centre of their environment, as all life springs up and orbits around them. They promote harmony, joy and creativity. They direct and enhance all communications channelled through the core felt-senses of all living beings, from the loci of though, feeling, will and expression. Guides translate and mediate all language from and between all natural life. Between the most complex of organism and the simplest cells, between the most powerful vibrations and the subtlest energies. Guides support relation between all life. They support community development and healthy strategies for connection.
Spirit Keepers are found in the most enchanted places. Sometimes deep in the woodland or by a waterfall they will reside. Often they are is plain view however strangely they might appear obscured as if protected by the other trees, hills and plants. And can be easily missed by casual passers by. They may also at times appears or vanish as if by magic, like a mirage in the desert. Spirit keepers also enjoy rooting at the very end of long overgrown pathways as if the effort it takes to visit them is symbolic of your sincere intentions to meet their wisdom Spirit keepers are wise elders and the most ancient of trees in the tribe. Many of them are in the very long process of dying (which can take hundreds of years in itself for a tree). They are the fullest and almost complete manifestation of their life cycle. Spirit Keepers hold suspended time within them. These trees are very often arks harbouring many spirits of animals and nature spirits. They are the grand masters of their craft, shamans and walkers between worlds. Spirit beings enter the Spirit Keeper Trees for a number of reasons, some spirits have passed from the living into spirit form and require healing before they move onto other realms, or are reincarnated. Some spirits enter these trees for initiations and teachings to progress on into spirit animal or elemental guides. Sometimes the spirits stay within the tree for many years. Spirit keeper know all and everything. They are philosophers and knowledge keepers. They are wise council for anyone willing to find the mystery place where they live.
The Celtic Tree Calendar in Tarot of the Tree Whisperer
There are 13 lunations in the Celtic Tree Calendar. Although Technically there are 14 tree cycles with the Yew (Ogham Ioho) holding ground for Samhain on the 31st October. I usually include the Yew in the final tree month of Elder. However for this project, each tree cycle will be represented through each suit in the minor arcana. Birch will be illustrated in the aces of the suits, Rowen in the twos, Alder in the threes and so on. Ivy, Reed/Blackthorn, Elder and Yew becoming our courts, our tribe elders. We will begin with Oak and as we journey with Oak during this present tree cycle we will be also journeying through the energy of the sevens of the minor arcana. My Council of Trees will also be featured in the most subtle and symbolic ways in the illustrations, so for those of us familiar with my enhanced tree calendar, we can enjoy these quirky subtle nuances that inform us of deeper layers of wisdom from this system.
Each new tree cycle month I will write a new blog post about the tree cycle we are moving within, incorporating this enchanting new perspective of my own tarot associations. In their life all trees will eventually journey and become what they are to become, the Wanderers, Weavers, Guides and Spirit Keepers of their land. And so for this yearly cycle we will discover each of the Celtic trees through the eyes of their tribe elders enhanced by their number in the minor. And may include other association. As we journey this new undiscovered path together through the Celtic Tree Calendar monthly blog posts, we will all experience the unfolding of delicate textures of this new and enchanting tarot decks creation.
(Blog posts on The Celtic Tree Calendar enhanced by Tarot of the Tree Whisperer's themes and storylines are not the final product for Tarot of the Tree Whisperer. They are musings on the companionship that is being explored and in development , for the purpose of the monthly blog post which will include a tree cycle forecast based on the meanings of the trees of the Celtic Tree Calendar.)
For those of us still following the Enhanced Celtic Tree Calendar and The Council of Trees I will also link the original blog post/site location for the fixed reference material. As we journey through the year we may even have magical encounters and meet the tribes folk of the tarot, through the art work as it is created.
Let us walk a while.
Oak Tree Cycle
(For Quick Reference and ease of relation - The Oak Tree Cycle and associations).
Tree Cycle: DUIR OAK
Oak Tree Cycle Dates: April 18 – May 15
Key Words For Oak: Birthing, Goals, Fixed, Roots, Growth, Strength, Boundaries, Trust, Self-Belief, Determination, Congruence, Relational Depth.
Souls Evolution Stage: Birthing
The Council of Trees: RUIS Elder, KOAD The Grove (IOHO Yew) and BEITH Birch
The Council of Trees Date: October 18 – November 15
Key Words of The Council of Trees:
Elder - Birth, Death, Rebirth, Reincarnation, Cycles, Endurance, Vulnerability, Journey, Awakening, Shapeshifting, Dreaming, Ancestors, Deity.
The Grove (Yew) - Council, Ancestors, Guidance, Knowledge, Integration, Stillness, Healing, Spirit, Void, Meditation, Life Path, Support, Surrender,
Birch - Beginnings, Renewal, Release, Relief, Rest, Cleansing, Rebuilding, Self-Respect, Forgiveness, Deity, Gift, Peace, Delicacy.
Spiritual Weather: Incongruence, rootlessness, Encounter, Sensitivity, Remembrance, Scars.
Celtic Festival: Beltane May 1st
Wanderer of Oak
We walk these familiar paths through the woodland of our lives during the Oak tree cycle and we are kept company by the Wanderer of Oak. Wanderer of Oak informs us of the wisdom of the oak tree during this tree cycle and also reminds us of the wisdom that we dwells within our own being. As we move from hawthorn into oak season we are inspired by new and fresh ideas. Oak is a deeply home-centred tree and these ideas will take root in Oak and grow strong. They may be relating to hearth and home, a project or job, or may be related to stepping through the oak doorway, into something new. The Wanderer of Oak does speak to that part of us that wants to pack a bag and head for the hills. Something in us feels a sense of comfort that we have a home space to come back to at the end of the day, but if we are honest with ourselves there is a part of us calling for adventure, for aliveness, to see spring blossoming in the wild places and to hear the sweet melody and chatter of bird song. We want to feel authenticity in our endeavours, to feel that what we are doing matters. Something within us needs birthed and bathed in aliveness. This may be a new awakening into a bright new passion or the blossoming of an old dusty dream. We are encouraged by the Wanderer to be honest with ourselves and make healthy choices that support our wellness, creativity and inner peace. We may have been fooling ourselves a little, avoiding listening to our gentle inner voice of our body. Or criticizing apart of ourselves. Up until now we may not have been ready to devote ourselves fully and congruently to that which needs our attention. Now is the time to let go of those distractions listen to our inner truth and embrace this new richly coloured exciting adventure.
Journal prompt or something to contemplate:
What does our being really need during Oak season that will encourage inspiration and a sense of adventure in our lives? What do we need to pack in our bag for this journey? These items symbolically represent something within us that want our attention, or need to be expressed in. They may be metaphorical representing 'ways of being' or actual items that will be our sacred tools of the wanderer within us.
Weaver of Oak
The Weaver of Oak joins with us as we continue on our path and we welcome the company a while. The Weaver of Oak offers us the wisdom of the Oak tree during this cycle but also reminds us of our own inner weaver. The Weaver of Oak offers us to consider the whole of a situation and how might we look at it from a new perspective. Through having a fixed view, boundaries become inflexible and barriers impermeable. But honestly, what are we trying to defend and keep out? Oak season is powerful for rooting our dreams firmly. It is better for us to remember that we do require flexibility when creating magic in our lives and manifesting. Our will power grows in strength during Oak and our sights are set on our goals, but we need to remember to rest a while. We may feel driven, focused, full of determination, pushing through every obstacle, but we need rest days. Growth and survival is our goal during the oak tree cycle, in order to grow we must push ourselves to the edge of our experience, but sensing aliveness on the edge can be intense. We are ready to see progress and we need the wheel to keep turning. We must remember that our body is always learning and adapting. It is not fixed in shape or expression. It moulds to the environment we create for it (if we go gently), as does our mind and spirit sense into what we provide for them and they shift course accordingly. Boundaries are meant to be pushed, broken down and removed. Let us have no limits during Oak, but let us not rush ahead. Instead let us weave the magical threads of all the parts of the whole of that which we want to create for ourselves. What do you imagine your tapestry looks like? Hold that image in your mind and keep creating!
Journal prompt or something to contemplate:
How might we weave together these items we carry in our bag? Our roots need space to grow without boundaries and our spirit wants to be nourished with life force. What boundaries have we placed on ourselves that need to be unwoven? What sustenance do we require to remain flexible and permeable to the rich aliveness in our environment?
Guide Of Oak
Along the path we meet the Guide of Oak. Beneath a wise old oak tree rests a natural fresh water spring. The Guide of Oak offers us wise council through the wisdom of the oak tree and also shines the light into our own depths and the wisdom we hold there. We are supported through the oak season in diving deep into those areas of our being that hold safe our deepest thoughts and feelings. We may not always believe in ourselves, in those precious endeavours that mean so much to us. We may doubt our ability and whether our community, our tribe, will acknowledge our efforts and support us in our pursuits. The Guide of Oak has perfect unconditional trust in our journey and asks us to trust in ourselves. The sun may very well set on some of our dreams during oak season, especially on those fancies that were not achievable to begin with. The Guide of Oak shares with us that if we believe in ourselves, truly and deeply, all else will fall into place and the right choices will become clear. We are strongly encouraged to turn our awareness inwards and really feel the felt-sense of our experiences. From deep within our being we will hear the voice that will reassure us and share with us the truth we need to hear. We are advised by the Guide of Oak to stand strong like an oak tree. Deepen our roots into the earth, those roots will reach that sacred waters, we don't need to dive head first into the spring to connect to source. Indecision is our foe during oak season. Sometimes we simply are not familiar with having the option to choose and are not so confident in choosing. We can strengthen this within us.
Journal prompt or something to contemplate:
Drinking from the well can be intoxicating. All those waters of life flowing into us, swimming around in our mind all of these things, each equally dazzling under the twilight sky. It is important to clear a space, take a step back from the overwhelm. Make a list of all of those things. Then take a look at each one item and feel into it in a sensing way. Notice how your body responds to each thing. Does the response feel shallow, or is there something deeper felt there? Believe in you locus for evaluation and trust the truth when it surfaces.
Spirit Keeper of Oak
The Spirit Keeper of Oak has news for us. Things take time to grow and we have all the time we need. They can not be rushed. The acorn holds within it's tiny self a universe of information, for the birth, life, death and afterlife of the spirit held within it's matter. The complete potential for experiencing life. We have within us our complete potential. But we can not know the complete potential of our environment. There is so much withheld from us in these dark rich soils. We do not know what is growing in the earth beside us. So much in the dark, unknown, and that we can not know. Spirit Keeper of Oak says 'this is okay'. We follow our dreams into oak season, we make our efforts to nurture them and we simply do not know if they will work or not. But we do it anyway because it is in our nature and deep down we do believe in the journey. We want our creation to live. The Spirit Keeper of Oak says 'it is not the destination that matters, it is living in the moment and enjoying the journey'. Patience and peace we can foster, accepting each movement forward and all who we meet along the way as a sign. Observing our progress and interactions with curiosity and contemplation through remaining grounded and present. The Spirit Keeper reminds us also that whatever we are working towards will have its own changing texture as we engage with it, it is also evolving, beyond us. Often when we think something might end, this is actually the beginning.
Journal Prompts or things to contemplate:
What in our lives requires some space from our attention, and what other thing needs our focus? Balance is important. What has run it's course and needs to be released? How might we find our way back to rest, meditation or stillness? We are reminded of whatever strategy we prefer that grounds and settles our inner soil and to practice this a while.
Yours in the heart of the woodland.