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Author Topic: Calling all wand owners/users  (Read 9202 times)
Iago_Morgan
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« Reply #15: January 14, 2008, 01:21:22 am »

I do understand the desire to study and work with trees, but why not use a non-destructive means of establishing a relationship to a tree species?    Would you intentionally do harm to an animal that you're studying, just to establish a relationship with it?  Trees may not bleed, but removing branches can leave the tree open to disease and insect damage.  Just saying...

Two things: First and foremost, taking a live branch from a tree is generally done with permission from said tree. As practitioners of natural magic, it is our responsibility to seek the tree, or in some cases other plant, that wants a relationship to beging with. Any time I take a branch or part of a vine from a living thing I consult it first. As I'm sure most would. I've had plants make it clear that they weren't willing to give up part of themselves for my work, and I've respected that. On the other hand, I've had others give me the go ahead, and I take it. Then I leave an offering. Again, it's part of our responsibility. Sometimes a person's work isn't facilitated by "whatever happens to be lying around" and there is a need for something special, with particular resonance to it.
Who here doesn't have a relationship with someone or something else that involves exchanges and personal sacrifices that are made, simply because we care and we want to. It's part of life.

Secondly, if the health of the tree or plant is the concern, there are solutions to that also. Anything from tar to parafin or beeswax can be applied to the resulting "open wound" that would seal it from outside contaminants. Although as it has been said, nature, by way of the weather and animals etc. knocks branches off of trees all the time and they seem to survive. How do you think the ones that are all lying around got there in the first place?

Just some thoughts.
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Circle in the night
In the dark I cloak myself in Light.
Surrounded by this Power, Magick's might
I see the ancient Fire burning bright.
Circle in the night.

-From 'Circle in the Night' by Iago Morgan

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« Reply #16: January 14, 2008, 01:25:19 am »



Eldri, could you please leave the quote code in your posts, please?  You can remove everything inside the code (as I have done here) if you do not want to quote anything in particular, but we need the quote codes so we can trace the responses in a conversation on this forum.
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« Reply #17: January 14, 2008, 07:42:27 am »

Well, in taking the branch we are also making a commitment to the tree to work with it (well, it's species) for a year.  In a tree lore sort of way.  So part of find the wand is finding the right tree to create a relationship with. 
If it were just making a wand for the sake of making a wand, then I would just find a dropped branch.  Heck, I've got a whole maple tree lying in my backyard, I could make a 100 wands.

Guess I am just not understanding here. Why can't you have a relationship with a tree from a dropped branch?  We had an ice storm a couple of years back and lots of trees lost their branches. I used a very long branch that had been lost in that way in ritual work. I don't think a dropped branch is any less magic or connecting than a live one.  A tree could even direct you to a dropped branch.

Plus depending where you are and the type of tree it is, some trees would be dormant (asleep) right now. Will that affect your relationship with the tree? Just curious.

I was always taught never to take branches from live trees, it's just interesting to find someone with a different pov. that's all, I'm not saying you are wrong. 

This all reminds me of how I was always sad reading The Giving Tree, it gave all it had (because people took) until there was nothing left but a stump, but other's I know read the story and thought it was a positive ending.   
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« Reply #18: January 14, 2008, 08:08:19 am »



Thanks Iago, this was what I was trying to say, but you made a lot more sense!
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« Reply #19: January 14, 2008, 08:13:07 am »

A tree could even direct you to a dropped branch.
That's true.

Quote
Plus depending where you are and the type of tree it is, some trees would be dormant (asleep) right now. Will that affect your relationship with the tree? Just curious.
I wonder that too, actually.  Luckily we have a lot of pines.

Quote
I was always taught never to take branches from live trees, it's just interesting to find someone with a different pov. that's all, I'm not saying you are wrong. 
  Do you pick flowers?  How is it any different?
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« Reply #20: January 14, 2008, 08:17:10 am »

>>>Anything I've ever read or heard about wands seems to be that they are used for 'directing energy', but the same seems to be true for athames.
What do you use your wand for?<<<

***Staffs are 'wands writ large', much as a cauldron is a 'big cup'---So, the same sort of thing you would use a staff for.

Much depends on which element you connect with wands.
In Feri, wands are air-and-intelect---- (pens, measuring sticks, conductors batons, stylus)
  They direct energy in a more 'soft focus' way than the sharp edge of the knife---they direct, not demand; measure, not dissect.
---I would be  much less inclined to 'invite' someone with the point of a blade.---nor would you cut a magical bond with a wand--

  think about the different 'feel'---and what they mean to *you*, or ask what they mean in your tradition.


Wands are air in my tradition, too.

Your distinctions make a lot of sense.  Thanks!
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« Reply #21: January 14, 2008, 08:52:00 am »

Perhaps you could suggest a non destructive method.  Maybe hugging would work.  ;-)

I believe that I've already done so by suggesting that the OP can use a branch that's already naturally fallen.
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« Reply #22: January 14, 2008, 10:50:04 am »

Two things: First and foremost, taking a live branch from a tree is generally done with permission from said tree. As practitioners of natural magic, it is our responsibility to seek the tree, or in some cases other plant, that wants a relationship to beging with. Any time I take a branch or part of a vine from a living thing I consult it first. As I'm sure most would. I've had plants make it clear that they weren't willing to give up part of themselves for my work, and I've respected that. On the other hand, I've had others give me the go ahead, and I take it. Then I leave an offering. Again, it's part of our responsibility. Sometimes a person's work isn't facilitated by "whatever happens to be lying around" and there is a need for something special, with particular resonance to it.

Let me be clear here... I'm not new to natural magic by any stretch of the imagination.  There are very rare circumstances when collecting a living branch from a tree may be necessary to what you're doing.  I have no problem with it in a case of extreme need and urgency in which there is not an acceptable substitute.

However, the impression left by the OP is that her group is using this simply as a group activity as a way of connecting with the trees.  Yes, you can do this by cutting a limb (just as you can connect with an animal by collecting a part of it and using it in some way).  I'm just trying to suggest that there are better ways to go about connecting with a species than asking it to sacrifice part of itself.

Who here doesn't have a relationship with someone or something else that involves exchanges and personal sacrifices that are made, simply because we care and we want to. It's part of life.

While I agree generally with your point, it's very easy to use that as an excuse to take what we want without giving thoughts to other possible suitable actions.  "Oh I left an offering" isn't a good excuse for cutting off a tree limb when a fallen branch would have suited the purpose just as well.  Really, in a case of cutting tree limbs, the personal sacrifice is generally going to be very one-sided.  Talk of exchange and personal sacrifice can become rather meaningless if one side reaps all the benefits.

Secondly, if the health of the tree or plant is the concern, there are solutions to that also. Anything from tar to parafin or beeswax can be applied to the resulting "open wound" that would seal it from outside contaminants.

Yes, I am well aware that there are ways of sealing tree wounds. 

Once again, the point was made to get this group to think thoroughly about their actions before deciding it's a good idea to cut living branches for personal use.  For the health and well-being of the tree, it is generally preferable not to damage it in the first place.

Although as it has been said, nature, by way of the weather and animals etc. knocks branches off of trees all the time and they seem to survive. How do you think the ones that are all lying around got there in the first place?

Do I detect a note of sarcasm here?

Just because something happens as the result of Nature taking its course does not necessarily mean it is appropriate for human beings to take a similar action.  If that were the case, it would be perfectly reasonable, ethical, and legal to drown someone.  It is, after all, the way of Nature to drown human beings on a frequent basis.
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« Reply #23: January 14, 2008, 02:37:57 pm »

  Do you pick flowers?  How is it any different?

No, I don't. Not to bring inside for decoration anyway. I prefer them outside.  But I have made a cup of dandelion tea here and there.  I do eat fruits and veggies of course, and herbs. One must survive after all.

Let us know how your venture into the forest goes, and what you learn from the trees.
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« Reply #24: January 14, 2008, 04:06:30 pm »

However, the impression left by the OP is that her group is using this simply as a group activity as a way of connecting with the trees.
 
Well, I wouldn't say it's simply that.  It's two parts, 1.  connecting with the tree, and 2.  harvesting a wand for ritual and magical purposes

Quote
Yes, you can do this by cutting a limb (just as you can connect with an animal by collecting a part of it and using it in some way).  I'm just trying to suggest that there are better ways to go about connecting with a species than asking it to sacrifice part of itself.

I can agree with that.  Thanks for sharing your opinion.
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« Reply #25: January 14, 2008, 04:10:09 pm »

No, I don't. Not to bring inside for decoration anyway. I prefer them outside.  But I have made a cup of dandelion tea here and there.  I do eat fruits and veggies of course, and herbs. One must survive after all.
Yes, taking something to survive is different, I agree.

Quote
Let us know how your venture into the forest goes, and what you learn from the trees.

I will.  It's not for a few weeks yet.
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« Reply #26: January 14, 2008, 04:24:35 pm »

Let me be clear here... I'm not new to natural magic by any stretch of the imagination.  There are very rare circumstances when collecting a living branch from a tree may be necessary to what you're doing.  I have no problem with it in a case of extreme need and urgency in which there is not an acceptable substitute.

I think the best way to honor a tree is to treat is as a tree. Honor it as the living thing it is. It is not an animal. It does not react to things as animals do. The OP is not talking about going out and cutting 2 foot thick branches that might indeed harm a tree. I believe it is more akin (if you need a human analogy) to cutting fingernails than lopping off an arm. Removing branches intelligently can be very beneficial to trees, however usually the wind and weather takes care of the major wild pruning. But we are not talking about major pruning. We are talking about a wand, a small piece that does not harm a healthy mature tree. Anyone taking a small branch from a tree should have enough knowledge to know a strong tree from a sick one, where the best place is to take it from (i.e. does not harm tree) and not to remove bark etc etc.

Beyond that I believe it becomes a personal issue. If you feel it is hurting the tree and making it scream in pain do not cut a wand from a living tree. From the original post, I do not think the OP feels that is what happens. Neither do I. I believe there is room for both opinions. It is very much like the veggie/meat eater thing. I do not want to be preached to by a vegetarian and refuse to feel I am doing something awful eating meat. They can state this is the way THEY feel, but to come at me like "you are an awful person to do that" I feel is out of line.
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« Reply #27: January 14, 2008, 07:53:03 pm »

Eldri, could you please leave the quote code in your posts, please?  You can remove everything inside the code (as I have done here) if you do not want to quote anything in particular, but we need the quote codes so we can trace the responses in a conversation on this forum.

***OK--I did not notice the How-to bits---Sorry!

OH, and HOW do I reply to a post that does not have a 'Quote/Reply' at the top?---Or, why do some show that, and others not?
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« Reply #28: January 14, 2008, 08:19:30 pm »

***OK--I did not notice the How-to bits---Sorry!

OH, and HOW do I reply to a post that does not have a 'Quote/Reply' at the top?---Or, why do some show that, and others not?

as a new member, you're restricted to posting in only a few folders.  Basically - if there's no quote/reply button, you can't reply there.
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« Reply #29: January 16, 2008, 01:17:57 pm »


Anything I've ever read or heard about wands seems to be that they are used for 'directing energy', but the same seems to be true for athames.
What do you use your wand for?

I've always used the wand for accumulating and the athame for discharging. I like my "wands" to be natural, because I think a natural wand is better suited to its purpose. I like birch personally, but I usually don't cut anything off a tree because there are enough nice dry branches just lying on the ground. Much easier! And the tree is obviously done with it, so no conundrum.
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