The Oak Tree - Duir - June
Oak Tree - Celtic Moon month June 10th - July 7th
The Oak tree has over 400 species. In mainland Britain Oaks have been seen to grow for over 700 years, they are a member of the Beech (Fagaceae) family of trees. The branches of the Oak are large and form a huge crown. The bark is a dark grey and finely cracked and ridged. The leaves that form from April to November are wave like with four or five lobes on each side and “ears” at the base.
Male and female flowers appear on the Oak tree at the same time, the males are the thin yellowish catkins, and the female flower appears at the tips of the shoots. The fruit of the Oak are the acorns which appear from June to October. These often form in pairs on long stalked scaly appearing cups. In woodlands the open canopies of the Oak maintains a steady amount of sun to shine down on the forest floor. The Oak leaves make excellent mulch for the other trees and plants in the forest, many of which grow near the oak. The Oak is deciduous which means it goes into a dormant stage in winter and loses its leaves.
All parts of the Oak are used the bark, wood, leaves and acorns. The tea made from the oak is said to be good for hemorrhoids, White Oak bark tea is used to treat sinus infections as it is said to relieve congestion. It is used in many homoeopathy treatments for alcoholism, bad breath and constipation. As the Oak wood has many uses from ship and house building to furniture many of our larger trees have gone to the timber mills. This wood is highly prized among carpenters and the bigger the better, which means most of our huge ancient Oaks have been felled. If you’re lucky enough to live near some of these ancient trees go and have a look at them and if you can, sit with your back against their trunk and meditate.
The Oak tree is known as the King of the Forest, the Oak Tree also represents the Summer King in many Pagan, Wicca and Druid rituals. The Oak King rules from Yule to Midsummer and the Holly King from Midsummer to Yule. The Oak and Holly King are twins or two parts of the whole. As the Holly Tree shines out all green in late autumn and winter the Oak King is getting ready to once again bring out his new life and growth as the sun after Yule once again regains its strength.
The Oak Tree is sacred to the Druids; in ancient times they would often sit beneath the tree and give their lessons. Many of the Druids Sacred Groves of Oak trees have sadly gone now but there are a few still around if you search.
There are many myths and legends to do with the Celts and Ancient Britons with the Oak Tree playing a prominent part. One is the Dryad's, these are Oak spirits, and they were often seen as wizened old men. They would have a sense of humour and often would tell riddles in answers to questions. The word Duir is said to come from the Sanskrit word “dwr” meaning door, this is given to mean the door to the Three Worlds of the Shaman.
The Oak tree is often hit by lightening and this wood would be prized for making wands and amulets, it also gives it many associations to the entire God's of Thunder and Lightening.
Every ancient culture has held the Oak Tree as sacred in particular the Ancient Britons and the Norsemen. The Yule Log would be an Oak log; the Druids would have all the fires extinguished and light an Oak log, all the Yule fires would have been lit from this one sacred log.
The wren is associated with the Oak as this is the King of Birds, the legend of the King of the Birds was that given the challenge by the Oak King to fly the highest the winner would be crowned King of the Birds. The Eagle flew upwards higher and higher and just as he began to give a shout of joy at being King the Wren jumped off his back and flew higher.
The Oak Tree is sacred to Brighid, the Dagda, Druids, the Norsemen, Dianus, Janus, Cybele, Rhea, Hecate, Erato and Pan. Also Artemis who in statues is seen wearing a necklace made from acorns, Artemis is said to be eternally youthful. The Acorn was said to be under the protection of the Goddess of Nature Cybele.
If you are interested in Celtic Tree Lore
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