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The Secret Language of Trees

Updated: Oct 18, 2022

"I always felt safety in the woods. A deep at homeness with the trees"

Ever sat under the cool canopy of a giant Maple or a great Oak on a mid summer afternoon and listened to it's leaves rustling in the breeze? You can feel the calm. Just sitting beneath the tree, you can feel rested and relaxed under it's swaying branches. You can feel sheltered under her, enveloped in her green majesty. That is connection. That deep, feel goodness is communing with her or communicating maybe. Her leaves rustling could be whispers we cannot yet fathom.

It is said that human life is the highest form of life on our planet, and then animals and next,

plants, but what we so egotistically presume is exactly the reverse; We appear at the top of the food chain; perhaps this is where the thinking stemmed from. In any case, there are things that plants can do that humans and animals simply cannot.

We work in concert with each other in the exchanging of oxygen and carbon dioxide, but we only need them, they don't need us for survival.

The bountiful offerings they provide us with like shade and a place to hang our hammock. They give us a cool retreat to read against. They drop leaves that nourish our gardens in the fall and offer us shelter from the wind. They offer us fruits and nuts and other foods like olives. They're fiber is used for our homes and other wood and paper products and all of this, yet they ask nothing of us but to just be and breathe.

Through ingenious design, their food is made up and consumed energetically, through photosynthesis. An ingeniously efficient way of eating far exceeding our own bodily needs. There is no waste and only what is needed for survival is taken. If more is taken, the undergrowth ecosystem sets to work to create balance. There have been yogis over time that have been known to not need to eat as humans do, but this is a rare individual indeed.

Of course you could argue that there are plenty of things we can do that plants can't; move about, talk, use our 5 senses... but, how do we know that plants don't communicate through other than the usual means that we do?

We do now know that trees have a marvelous cooperation with fungi in that they work together to communicate a need or a warning to other trees. When more nutrients are used than the tree needs, it is sent back down to the ecosystem beneath the tree. Such fungi, use it to proliferate and create a sort of neural pathway between the roots of the trees, facilitating communication. Check out the video above for a more detailed description of this phenomenon.

"The trees were breathing. And everything was so alive"

Oddly enough, I was recently in touch with a friend who had tried Psilocybin, better known as magic mushrooms. Considering that it is fungi that facilitates the communication between the trees, I thought her experience very interesting. She said that she had a profound spiritual experience where everything was alive with energy and life and "the trees were breathing." Perhaps mushrooms are facilitating the communication between trees and ourselves too.

Trees such as the butternut and walnuts communicate the need to produce more or less nuts each year to keep the local ecosystem healthy by way of nut and onward up the food chain. No one yet has been able to deduce the pattern to which greater or lesser yields happen as they are communicated through need and in the secret language only trees know.

Avatar is now seeming not quite so fantasy huh? And since we're on the topic of sci fi, I have to of course give reverence to Tolkien. Ahead of his time with the March of the Ents in The Lord of the rings, along with other acclaimed producers of works that have humanized trees. Maybe they were on to something.

Native Americans have always revered all forms of life, including trees. Known as "the Standing People", to the Cherokee, a tree symbolizes roots and the relationship we have with our natural environment. They symbolize longevity and permanence.

There's no denying that we feel better in nature too. Science even says so. So perhaps we are getting those feel good vibes from the trees and plants telling us to bend in the storms and to just be and breathe.. If only we would listen to their whispers.

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1 Comment

Evone Monteith
Evone Monteith
Nov 25, 2022

wow - microplastics in snowflakes


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