I always used to joke about tree huggers in my younger days. You know, those folks who also ate granola bars and wore Birkenstocks.
But after three decades of practicing magic. I have come to appreciate the value of hugging a tree.
And by hugging a tree I literally mean wrapping your arms around a big honking tree trunk.
I don't mean just loving nature. I mean a real hug.
Tree hugging, believe it or not, is a great magic ritual for people who need an instant magical "quick fix." Trees, being rooted in the ground, are deeply connected with the Earth. Most trees have as much root below the surface of the ground as they have trunk and foliage above ground. For that reason, trees are act as incredible sources of grounding energy.
For this Magic Ritual Pick the Biggest Tree You Can Find
Of course, if you are going to hug a tree, you want to pick as big a tree as you can find. The bigger the tree, the more energy it can absorb, and the more it can help you ground yourself. Plus, bigger trees can absorb and exchange a lot of energy without damaging their own health. Personally, I always find a tree with a trunk so wide that I can't wrap my arms all the way around it. That way, I know the tree is big enough that I won't cause it harm. This is important, because by Rules of the Road (the Universal laws that govern magical practice) "do no harm" is a big monster rule.
Once you have picked out your tree, wrap your arms around the tree and just flow any unwanted energies into the tree, through the bark. You can flow fear, anger, hopelessness, grief, frustration, or hate into the tree. The tree will take this energy and convert into energy that it can use for its own growth. Grief becomes water energy to keep the tree moist. Anger becomes fire energy that can be used in photosynthesis. Hopelessness is converted to earth energy which is simply dumped into the ground. Scatterbrained energy becomes Air energy, which the tree uses to breathe. See the beauty of this magic ritual?
Two Notes about the Magic of Hugging Trees
Sometimes, because of where you are and who you are with, you can't just go hug a tree. Maybe you are at work or maybe you are with people who don't believe in the use of magic rituals. No big deal. Instead of hugging the tree, just back up to the tree and lean against it. You can easily look casual while you do it. You can transmit energy through any part of your body that is touching the tree. In fact, the more contact you have with the tree, the faster the energy exchange will happen, and leaning up against a tree gives you a lot of contact. With this method you can easily use the tree-hugging magic ritual in public.
The second note is about bare feet. If you are alone and if the weather permits, take your shoes and socks off while you hug a tree. This gives you contact not only with the tree, but also with the Earth, which easily absorbs unwanted energy. This helps a lot so if you don't mind getting your feet a little dirty, you'll get a lot more out of this magic ritual by going barefoot.
Most of all ... enjoy! With this little magic ritual, you not only dump your own negative energies, but you also feed the tree and the Earth as well. Beings of nature, like trees, are able to easily convert complex human emotions and sensations into usable, practical energy for their own growth and enhancement.
Pretty cool, isn't it? That's why I love magic!
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Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/randysonofrobert/ / CC BY 2.0