Tree Medicine

Standing People

In the spiritual tradition of my Native American ancestors, the trees are known as the Standing People. They are the great and wise chiefs of the Green Nations.  Their roots run deep into Mother Earth and their branches reach high toward Father Sky.  They are deeply connected to both the physical and spiritual realms, wise and generous.  I spent some time among them this morning seeking wisdom, peace, rest.

As I lay gazing upward at the quivering, multi-colored leaves, an occasional gust of wind would send the brightest ones spiraling down like dry rain to catch in my hair and caress my face.  I tried to get a photo of one of these leaf showers, as it was an achingly beautiful sight, but it was a Zen moment that simply could not be captured.

Here is another view from my hammock instead.

I’ve been feeling generally stuck for some months now in several major areas of my life, desiring a big change, not knowing what to do or how to make myself feel better.  Each small step I have managed forward seems overwhelmingly insignificant compared to the thousands more that must yet be walked.  Lots of thinking going on in my mind these days about what is really important to me and how I want to live the second half of my life. A midlife crisis perhaps?

It must be time for the medicine wheel to turn… a new stage of life approaches.  The Standing People are making this journey now also. They have many lessons for me, I think.


8 Responses to “Tree Medicine”

  1. Rosalee de la Foret on 16 Oct 2008 at 5:23 pm

    Beautiful. Thanks for sharing Tammy

  2. Sue on 17 Oct 2008 at 2:59 pm


    I see you laying as the drifting leaves cress your body and mind…….ohhhhhhhhhhhh what a wonderful place to be.

    Isn’t it strange that when we seek advice, the standing people are whom we look to.

    I find a change coming into my life as well and I seek out Father Oak for his guidance and wise wisdom.

    Mother Earth also has my attention as I sing to her the cries of “how too’s”

    Their magick will slowly begin to take shape……… a thought here and there will bring you into focus. See your dreams as reality, begin to play the part and it will come to greet you with open arms.

    Blessings Dear Friend.

  3. tammy on 18 Oct 2008 at 9:49 am

    Such sweet words, Sue. So many people I talk to are feeling these major changes approaching. There must be something wonderful on the horizon! Thanks for reading, Rosalee :-)

  4. Sarah Head on 19 Oct 2008 at 4:02 pm

    Tammy, I’ve been meaning to email you, but this response will have to do instead. Most people who become “aware” start rejecting the status quo and asking questions once their 40th birthday arrives. The questions often bring inner turmoil and change will occur, although not at the time we think or ask for, but it will happen. Keep a diary, don’t write in it every day, but just note down something when it feels right then read it through after six months or a year and see how changes have occured.

    If anyone had suggested to me what turmoil and change would be happening to me when I was 42, I would have been terrified, but now, ten years later when things are calmer and more settled and all my family are relatively content, I can look back and accept what those ten years have brought in both gifts and challenges. I have grown and now I can move towards the wise woman in my 50s. I’m sure you will also be brought everything you need.

    Take hawthorn for courage to face what must be faced. You might also like to make yourself a set of ogham sticks to help you interpret your present.

    Much love and good wishes


  5. tammy on 20 Oct 2008 at 9:54 am

    Sarah I am really grateful for the wisdom of you women who have been here and done this! Thank you so much for your encouragement. I am a prolific journaler, thankfully. This has helped me through many of life’s difficulties. My runes and a wonderful new tarot I just got is giving me a great deal of insight, as well as being outside as often as possible to listen to the wind and the whispers of Nature all around me. I’m not yet familiar with ogham sticks… will have to learn more.. yet another way to consult the Standing People! Thanks again, Sarah. Love and blessings back to you.

  6. cathy on 22 Oct 2008 at 1:09 am

    Tammy, I relate to this sharing very much and wish you courage and patience.

    It’s hard to feel so stuck when we obviously have learned many ways to unstick ourselves in our 40-something years on Earth. I’ve been feeling like an impatient child, kicking at the wall, because I can’t seem to make the big changes I want to make.

    Trees are so powerful. I’m still paying a lot of attention to apple trees.

  7. tammy on 22 Oct 2008 at 9:22 am

    thank you, Cathy… your words ring so true to me. The trees are making me think alot right now about figuring out how to be content with where I am planted in life, yet also finding a way to express my passions so that I am ever changing and growing and flowing with the seasons. Deeply rooted and connected yet spreading my branches ever wider and higher… I’m finding the paradox fascinating and energizing. This seems the right way out of the “stuckness,” I just have to learn how to walk this path successfully! I know I also need to shed a LOT of old shit that is weighing me down, and I’ve never been good at letting go of things. But I feel strongly that if I can find a way to do it skillfully, the shedding will be beautiful… as beautiful as a dry leaf shower on an Autumn day…

  8. the Witchen Kitchen Beginner Herbal » Blog Archive » More Tree Medicine: Making Ogham Sticks on 30 Oct 2008 at 5:21 pm

    […] my recent post on Tree Medicine my friend, Sarah Head, suggested I make my own set of Ogham Sticks.  She was even kind enough to […]

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