The latest product from Justbod is a brand new version of bod’s ‘Tree’ design: cold cast in bronze, aluminium or brass, and inset into a handcrafted solid oak plaque, 16 cm square. To see the range, visit our ‘Tree of Life’ page here: http://www.justbod.co.uk/tree-of-life
In this short article bod talks about the Tree of Life, and his love of trees:
As you may know, I absolutely love trees, and this certainly won’t be my last piece of work based on a tree.
This particular design, although created by myself, is based on quite a common theme of the Tree of Life, World Tree or Sacred Tree.
This is a common motif in many world mythologies and alludes both to the interconnected nature of all life as well as a metaphor for a connection between all forms of creation – the link between heaven and hell or underworld - “As above, so below.”
The Celts venerated trees (Tree of Life – ‘crann bethadh’ pronounced: krawn ba-huh) and their Druids had ritual centres within oak groves.
When clearing a piece of land to settle in, many Celtic Iron Age tribes used to leave a tree in the centre. This tree then became the centre of the community, with gatherings and celebrations held beneath it.
I grew up in a traditional village that had a village green with an enormous tree in the centre. Just like our ancestors, we held many events around and under this tree. The tree dominated the village and always felt like a protective and symbolic presence.
In Norse (Viking) mythology there is Yggdrasil, which, again, in their cosmology is a type of World Tree, Tree of Life and Sacred Tree, connecting many worlds.
The accepted meaning of Yggdrasil is ‘Odin’s Horse’ – the Poetic Edda (a collection of minstrel poems) describe how Odin sacrificed himself by hanging from this tree, in doing this he discovered the Runes.
“I know that I hung on that windswept tree,
Swung there for nine long nights,
Wounded by my own blade
Bloodied for Odin,
Myself an offering to myself:
Bound to the tree
That no man knows
Whither the roots of it run...
…down to the deepest depths I peered
Until I spied the Runes.
With a roaring cry I seized them up,
Then dizzy and fainting I fell.
Well-being I won
And wisdom too.”
The Poetic Edda.
This always reminds me of the quest for spiritual knowledge undertaken by Siddhartha Gautama when he meditated under the Bodhi Tree, achieved enlightenment and became the Buddha.
Trees have always been associated with the spiritual quest, and there are many books on tree lore, symbolism, healing powers and meaning.
I shall certainly be creating more pieces based on, or featuring trees, they are one of my greatest inspirations.
I hope you like ‘Tree.’
Thanks for reading!
You can view all of bod’s currently available work here: http://www.justbod.co.uk/collections
and read more about his different designs and design processes here: http://www.justbod.co.uk/bods-work
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