Lesson of the Alder

LESSON OF THE ALDER

from The Wisdom of Trees by Jane Gifford

The Alder is a tree that supports and protects physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Its associations with both weapons and shields, reminded the ancient Celts that part of the skill of the warrior lies in knowing when to take up the sword and when to take up the shield. Although an alder shield will protect you and give you courage and an alder-forged weapon will help you defend yourself, ultimately the most important aspect of the warrior is his or her intent. This is the key to conflict or peace.

The alder reminds us of the need to blend strength and courage with generosity of spirit and compassion. There is a time to challenge things and a time to hold our peace. The alder teaches us this discrimination and the need to see beneath the surface of things. It combines the desire for self-preservation with the desire to serve and emphasizes the need for a firm foundation to stand on.

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