Growing up I heard a story which I faintly remembered sometime ago. It concerned the search for the one.
The one in this case is the first tree which arose in a forest. Of course one would have to return to the centuries which preceded ours.
Then trees grew tall and lived for countless ages before humans first arrived. Usually, in the centre of the virgin forests of the Americas the progenitor of the forest could be found.
Carried by the winds from distant lands a seed would be dropped into rain-soaked soil to take root. As time passed the aged wonder would take form and grow toward the azure sky above. Life would generate life as the forest grew.
However, there was always a place of reverence in the heart of the vast forest where the progenitor stood. From this centre the life of the forest flourished.
Trees are wrapped in myth and legend. Moses, the exiled prince of Egypt, wrote of one such forest where a tree grew in the centre of a garden paradise inhabited by the first man and woman to arrive on earth. Moses knew the history of Isis and Osiris from his Egyptian heritage. The Acacia Tree was the tree of life which was just north of Heliopolis.
From his Hebrew heritage he wrote of the Adam and Eve where the trees dominated the ancient story. The tree of the knowledge of good and evil, where the crafty winged serpent dwelled among the branches, and the tree of life where eating its fruit would grant instant immortality were well known in the culture of the time.
This Etz Chaim ( עץ חיים ), tree of life, existed before man and woman. Eden was more than a garden paradise. It was a symbolic relationship of creation and humanity’s place. It was humanity’s birthright given, lost and sought.
The Adam and Eve were cast out of paradise to travel East of Eden in search of their own reality and destiny. In the Christian Bible the story of Eden and its tree of life in Genesis would be rediscovered in the new paradise prophesied in the Book of Revelation where it would bear its fruit. Immortality would finally be granted to humanity after its long night of journeying into the Eastern darkness.
Searching for Eden and the Etz Chaim is part of our genome. The quest of a lifetime is always to search for what lies over the horizon. At one time the Americas were viewed as the new Eden.
Now, humans cast their eyes toward the cosmos and wonder what lies out there beyond mortal reach. Perhaps the stirring within our soul remembers a song sung by morning stars when the cosmic ocean was formed from the ancient river of life.
The cosmic forest distributed the seeds of life across the infinite majesty. Those seeds were planted on this planet traversing the cosmos where life flourished.
When one yearns for Eden, one yearns for a heritage which originated out there in the starry nursery of creation. As we are brothers and sisters on earth, so we are brothers and sisters of a cosmic family which vibrates throughout the cosmos.
On your personal quest on the road of life what do you hope to find at the end? Every journey has a terminus a quo and terminus ad quem.
When your road finally ends, will you find your lost Eden? Will it be the centre of a new reality or a dreamless sleep?
G. D. Williams © 2012
Yggdrasil: Norse Tree of Life