Wisdom of a Broken Tree

Ancient dancing oak wood.JPG
I was walking yesterday, among the ancient twisted oaks, as the tail end of a hurricane swept across the land. I was sheltered on the forest floor, but high above me the branches bent and strained in the high wind, creaking and complaining. The leaves fluttered wildly in the wind stream, sounding like rushing water, and the energy of the storm excited everything. The dogs were a little wilder than normal, and all across the dry earth path, the tips of high branches lay scattered, thrown to the ground by the storm.

Broken oak tree.JPG
Then ahead my path was blocked by a sad sight. One of the ancient oaks had cracked and it’s huge old limb had fallen to the earth, still attached to the trunk. Despite the huge crack it’s leaves were still lush green, and then as I approached, I saw something amazing. Beautiful red ribbons were fluttering in the wind.

Red ribbon blowing in oak tree.JPG
The motion was so beautiful, and the sight so amazing, deep in the wild woods. I was entranced and mesmerised, full of wonder and questions. Who had tied these beautiful ribbons so carefully and artfully to the cracked oak tree? What did it mean? I stood in the wind watching and wondering, and coming back to myself at the side of the broken tree.

Red ribbon flying oak tree.JPG
It felt like such an intimate and loving act to bandage the tree in beautiful streaming ribbons, and such a gift to leave it here for me to find. And then I noticed the tiny hand made signs hanging here and there, scattered through the branches. Each one I read deepened my growing smile, but this one has stayed with me right through today, so I thought I would share it.
Such beautiful wisdom, found hanging in a broken tree. If we are in a rut which no longer feels satisfying or comfortable, we need to climb out and try something new.

Try something new sign in tree.JPG

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About greenmackenzie

Hi, I'm Seonaid, and I share my home with my husband, my son and a collection of cats and dogs. I am forever snapping shots of things which catch my eye. I love art which is here now and gone tomorrow...like food and nature...but also have a passion for vintage and the ancient past! Nature is my favourite muse, with her wild ever shifting seasons. I have been using and teaching mindfulness and relaxation for over 12 years, and have yet to become any sort of expert :-) I'm a Psychotherapist, and run the Maggies Highlands Cancer Centre, in Inverness, Scotland.
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55 Responses to Wisdom of a Broken Tree

  1. meritit says:

    Can feel your β˜€οΈ and πŸ’—! Thank you! πŸ€

  2. Google says:

    I’m excited to find this great site. I wanted to thank you for your time due to this fantastic read!!
    I definitely really liked every part of it and i also have you book marked to check out new things in your blog.

  3. Beauty is everywhere when we look for it. You have a blessed and open eye and heart!

  4. best I get on and do that something then – very thought provoking GM

  5. Liana says:

    YOU see all the right things in the right ways.

  6. rommel says:

    A little creepy to be walking in between trees, eh? Or no? The message has been my philosophy for quite awhile now. When I was in Italy, there are so many places I got invited to come with but I didn’t. I learned that lesson. Now I always seize the day. As a matter of fact, I’m doing something new right now. πŸ˜€

  7. What a treasure to find in the middle of the woods. I always feel so humbled + blessed by moments like these, when we stumble across the beautiful workings of a stranger in nature.

  8. ladyfi says:

    What a lovely gesture that transformed the old tree!

  9. What a beautiful thing to do for the broken tree. I can just imagine how you felt as you got closer and saw the ribbons and the messages. Goose bump stuff! Thanks for sharing, Seonaid. I so enjoyed your descriptive words and the lovely images.

    • It really was breath taking, and then I started smiling with joy, which just grew and grew as I got closer and deeper into the tree. Such a lovey act of kindness towards the broken tree πŸ™‚

  10. Robin says:

    What a beautiful and magical find! It reminds me of a Wishing Tree. Your images are, as always, lovely. I love the way you captured the movement of the ribbons. πŸ™‚

    • Thank you Robin, at first that’s exactly what I thought as I saw the ribbons fluttering. There are lots of wishing trees here, next to holy wells, where rags are hung as prayers or wishes….clootie wells we call them (cloth wells)…..but then I saw the broken branch, and of course no well πŸ™‚
      I spent ages capturing shots of the ribbons until I was happy, so it’s great to hear you like them.

  11. What a beautiful share, I adore the woods and the trees are like friends… Whispering gently upon the breeze.. I often will walk and sit with my back to a favourite tree and feel the pulse of life beat along with my breath..
    Some one obviously cares deeply for the wood and bound the tree to help heal.. Trees are our very life.. We breathe in that which they exhale and they breathe in which we breathe out. We are indeed ONE.. Trees are life givers in many ways.. they bring us oxygen and provide us with shelter and fuel, fruits and berries, And provide the Forest with a habitat for thousands of species of insects and birds.. binding the ground together with its roots, along which Fungi travel..
    Tree Wisdom is deep.
    And I thank you for sharing..
    Love and Blessings and I came via Ka’s reblog πŸ™‚
    Sue

    • Thanks for your heartfelt and thoughtful comment Sue. Trees are indeed full of deep wisdom….and of course a little magic πŸ™‚
      I love your thoughts that we are all one, if only more people could understand this. The energy and feeling in ancient woods like this are so special. The trees have stood here for so long that they have grown moss coats over their crinkly bark!

  12. What a wonderful find! Great shapes and light in your images too πŸ™‚

  13. Mjollnir says:

    An Ent snuck in when you weren’t looking πŸ˜‰

  14. LB says:

    What an awesome story! I would have lived on that natural and unexpected high for days. So very, very cool!

    • Thanks, awesome is a great word for the whole experience…..and it still makes me smile and lifts me when I think back to it…..or look at the red ribbon photos πŸ™‚
      I was feeling a little broken that day, but I left the woods feeling renewed!

  15. What an amazing experience, and an amazing way of capturing it. This is so beautiful – thank you so much for sharing the magic you encountered with all of us! Namaste

    • It really was one of those breath taking moments, where just for a while you’re not sure if it’s real or a dream. Then the joy poured in as I took it all in, and then I played a while with the camera until I was satisfied! There is a second part…which I should probably post…..further along the trail, just as I thought I couldn’t feel any more amazed, a beautiful deer jumped out into the path and stood looking at me and the dogs…..for what felt like forever!! It was a good day in the old woods πŸ™‚

  16. Amy says:

    Beautiful, beautiful post, Seonaid. Thank you for sharing the quote. Love these trees…

    • Thanks Amy, it was such a beautiful find, and after I had drunk in my own delight and pleasure I then spent a while trying to capture the magic with my lens……the dogs were of course thoroughly bored by then πŸ™‚ That quote was just perfect…..

  17. How did you know – I needed that reminder. Thank you and have a great day. πŸ™‚

  18. Lucid Gypsy says:

    Thank you for passing on this wonderful gift πŸ™‚

    • Gilly it’s always a pleasure to share with all the wonderful bloggers out there, and I was left so happy and uplifted after this encounter that I really had to share πŸ™‚

  19. What an interesting story, especially because today, after a storm, I found a very large branch lying in my yard. It was still bearing many beautiful green maple leaves…fallen too soon from the tree. It made me sad, but nature has it’s own agenda.
    Thanks for sharing your special moment! πŸ™‚

    • Nature really does have her own agenda, often hidden from our eyes until we are able to see the big picture. I wonder if you could do something beautiful…..or useful….with your newly acquired maple branch?
      Thanks for sharing your storm damage story, and for reading mine πŸ™‚

  20. gwynnrogers says:

    Seonaid, as you know, what sometimes seems like a disaster in our lives… can also bring blessings. Also, it forces us to change… or die! I LOVE the thinking of whomever left the messages. Plus, I’m sure the tree is enjoying the beautiful ribbon.

    You have many wise friends. I love their comments… they are so true. Thanks for your uplifting message today.

    • Gwynn I felt certain that the tree was loving the beautiful red fluttering ribbons….like soft beautiful bandages πŸ™‚
      Sudden unforeseen change, like storm damage, can leave an awkward mess until we figure out how to work with the change. The tree was coping beautifully, despite the break…..and I’m pretty sure it will survive in its new rather surprising position!

  21. Suzanne says:

    Wow – what a wonderful and profound experience. Life is truly amazing and people are doing the most beautiful and amazing things these days. Thank you to the person who tied the ribbons and left the messages and thank you for bringing this message to us out here in blogland. πŸ™‚

    • It really was an uplifting and magical experience to come across this beautiful gesture…so far into the woods. Like you I want to thank who ever it was who tied the beautiful ribbons and took time to write the messages. I found just exactly what I needed that day, on the limbs of a broken tree πŸ™‚

  22. Seonaid, I think whoever did this has a heart as big as yours.

  23. Uncle Tree says:

    What a neat true-life story! πŸ™‚ Quite intrigued I wood be, as well.
    Nicely told, Seonaid. Of course, I feel bad for the old boy.
    Momma Nature be a b…. some days, no doubt.
    The ribbon? A super-fine gesture.
    The writing on it said?
    I must know.
    UT πŸ™‚

    • There were lots of ribbons, and they all said something different. All were uplifting and spoke of love, smiles and comfort in being the best person we can be…..it was hard to read them as they fluttered wildly in the wind. One just said “smile” many times over πŸ™‚
      I think the tree will survive despite being broken by the wind….I hope!

  24. Mike says:

    Lovely. Finding yourself is why one never really lives alone.

  25. Wow, what a terrific find. What a wonderful find. What a wonderful person to have taken the time to place such signs and symbols. This restores, to a degree, and given the current state of the world, some of my faith in those with whom I share the planet. It’s comforting to know that there are indeed some very good, very caring, very thoughtful people out there. People who I would like to know, and feel I do know. Then again, perhaps these communications were placed by nymphs and fairies … who can know? Thanks for the enlightening and revitalizing words and images. D

    • I know, it was such a wonderful gift David, and felt as though it was meant for me just when I needed it most. I left the woods smiling and certain of the basic goodness in the world. Despite the big politics the world is still full of people just trying to live and love….and this tree brought me back to that πŸ™‚

  26. Reblogged this on Fiesta Estrella and commented:
    Seonaid’s posts are always so seriously awesome! While I had just written what I have typed here below, I paused and I found and read Seonaid’s post that I have reblogged. It feels like it’s in alignment with what I was experiencing _ but to me_ I hadn’t seen the message at the end, until now..

    We are connected in ways we cannot imagine. There’s such a mystery to this experience of life that brings us everyday into the presence of love. We pass by others, we share our thoughts, our day-to-days, but there’s a clearer line of transmission, and this is the energy aspect of us that moves across space and time.

    We move beyond space and time and show up at one another’s virtual doorstepsβ€”it is actually in our hearts that we know one other intimately. The energy moves through us, and beyond us in ways we cannot imagine, lighting up grids and flowing like water into all the cracks and crevices that hold us fragmented.

    We meet and greet, mapped together by energetic lattices, sewn into a tremendous quilt of story and connection.

    Let every moment be endless breath-filled :::Aloha::: in the tenderness of spirit , and from the breath of Love & Life. Let us witness the gentle and tender connections we form.

    • Thanks so much for the reblog, and the lovely explanation of it πŸ™‚ I love it when the world feels sewn together into a great quilt of connections….and I love that imagery! It’s so beautiful when we find that our minds are not creating alone, but weaving with others πŸ™‚

  27. The faeries of the forest were busy again.

  28. Stephanie says:

    I love to go wandering the woods with you from afar.

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