Shamanic Prayer Tree
Celebrating the Winter Solstice with a Shamanic Prayer Tree at Louse Point in East Hampton, NY. This juniper tree spirit gives itself to our deepest wishes and offerings. Visit this tree - connect to Mother Earth, connect to those near and far as we come together, sharing our spirits and the love that interconnects us in this web of life.
In Siberia, trees are seen as sacred as they bridge the heaven and the earth. There is a beautiful shamanic tradition in Siberia of creating a prayer tree. Traditional offerings are left by the tree, such as stones, cornmeal, rice, flowers, incense, water. The shaman in the community connects to Pachamama through ceremony, chanting and giving gratitude to the guardian spirits for carrying individual and collective prayers up to the Heavens so the dreams manifest through Mother Earth. People tie ribbons (strings of fabric in all colors) loosely on the branches of the empowered tree.
"In indigenous cultures it is believed that everything that is alive has a spirit and we live in partnership with the spirit that lives in all things. For it is believed that all of life is connected to a web of life. And together with all of life we live in a place of cooperation and partnership. It is important to honor and respect all of life that is connected to this amazing web."
When we can experience our gratefulness for life we transform our perspective about what is happening in our own lives and on the planet. For when we feel grateful we can experience the beauty instead of the pain. We want to acknowledge those who are suffering and feel compassion. At the same time it is important to experience the beauty and the gifts that life brings for us. This is an ancient teaching that has been passed down through many cultures and many generations."
My relationship with this native tree spirit is unique and its distinct message of trust and offering came through in shamanic journey and ceremony. The juniper tree represents healing, purification, protection and peace. To read more about its plant medicine visit, Earth Wisdom: Juniper
It stands awaiting you, on the sacred land of Louse Point in East Hampton, NY. This is a quiet place of reflection, meditation and manifestation.
Drive onto Louse Point Road and continue all the way until the road ends at the bay. Facing East, beginning walking along the water, walk about 50 feet and turn right, facing South and the dunes. Begin walking South until a few evergreen trees come into view, you will know when you see the juniper prayer tree, it will have Chalimars and stones at its base. See images on the right.
For those of you in far away lands, I inspire you to create a Prayer Tree in your community, bringing in the togetherness to heal all sentient beings and Mother Earth.
What to do:
Bring pieces of fabric cut into long ribbons, in Siberia they are called Chalimars. Approach the tree with an open heart and sit with it for sometime, thinking of your dreams and healing wishes for yourself, beloveds, all of life. At this time present any offerings, such as burning herbs or incense, water, grains, stones, flowers.
When you feel ready empower your Chalimar by holding it in your hands and repeating your prayer 3 times, then loosely tie it on any branch you feel inspired to. You can tie as many Chalimars as you like. Invite loved ones and beings of all ages, this is a beautiful practice to share with children. At last, give thanks to Mother Earth and the five elements for carrying your prayers, you may also recite the Aho Mitakuye Oyasin prayer below.
"As long as your Chalimars hang they are empowered by the elements. The wishes they hold are carried far and wide by the winds. They are energized by sun and starlight. They are animated by rain and snow. They are vivified by the Earth through the trees or poles."
On the Winter Solstice, Saturday, December 21, a closing ceremony will be held under the tree and the Chalimars will be gently removed. They will be formed into a bundle and by evening the elementf fire will be ignited, releasing our blessings to the Great Spirit as smoke.
AHO MITAKUYE OYASIN
(Ah-ho, Mee-tah-koo-yay, Oy-yah-seen)
All my relations. I honor you in this circle of life with me today. I am grateful for this opportunity to acknowledge you in this prayer.
To the Creator, for the ultimate gift of life, I thank you.
To the mineral nation that has built and maintained my bones and all foundations of life experience, I thank you.
To the plant nation that sustains my organs and body and gives me healing herbs for sickness, I thank you.
To the animal nation that feeds me from your own flesh and offers your loyal companionship in this walk of life, I thank you.
To the human nation that shares my path as a soul upon the sacred wheel of Earthly life, I thank you.
To the Spirit nation that guides me invisibly through the ups and downs of life and for carrying the torch of light through the Ages, I thank you.
To the Four Winds of Change and Growth, I thank you.
You are all my relations, my relatives, without whom I would not live. We are in the circle of life together, co-existing, co-dependent, co-creating our destiny. One, not more important than the other. One nation evolving from the other and yet each dependent upon the one above and the one below. All of us a part of the Great Mystery. Thank you for this Life.
* Ideas and words collected and adapted from two powerful shamanic healers and authors, Sandra Ingerman and Llyn Roberts.