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Odin, Buddha and the Tree 
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Anyone else notice that the Tree is associated with enlightenment or divine inspiration both in the ordeals of Odin and Buddha?

I would argue that the Indian concepts of The Tree are probably very closely analogous to the Norse.


Thu Jul 24, 2008 9:45 pm
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Interesting point, and one that confirms the value of this new forum.

The presence of the "sacred tree" in many cultures is indeed interesting. The Buddha sat under a tree and found enlightenment--the Christ suffered and died on a tree--and Odin suffered and discovered the runes on a tree.


Thu Jul 24, 2008 11:33 pm
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The association of a tree with knowledge is also seen in the Eden story. The tree of "Knowledge of good and evil".

In Hinduism, Shiva is associated with a type of Asian tree that often grows to have 3 main branches and has a leaf with three sections (probably because he has three eyes - the third representing his great knowledge). The tree is grown inside of many Hindu temples dedicated to Shiva and its leaves are offered to him.


Fri Jul 25, 2008 2:08 pm
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Anthesis: On my visits to Bali, I have seen such trees in Hindu Temples.

To everyone: There are ideas found among the Greeks, Hindus, and Indians which equate the tree and the human. Among the Greeks, humans are created from ash trees, and some people get turned into trees. Among the Hindus, Kundalini is curled around the base of the tree, which is the spine. And among the Norse we are familiar with the discussion of ask and embla, and the fact that this is explicitly connected to the World Tree (hence each of us IS the world tree).

This is somewhat different from the Eden story, where the trees seem to be primarily agricultural symbols, defined by fruit.

Of course there are universal elements- the idea that trees reach up to heaven and are hence related to divine knowledge seems likely to be one of them. However the human element of the Tree seems also distinctly Indo-European.


Fri Jul 25, 2008 4:47 pm
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I was reading about Mongolian Cosmology today. The Mongolian people are one of the few 'untouched' cultures left. Their shamanistic traditions faced persecution when a 15th century ruler converted to Buddhism and again during communist rule. However, compared to what happened to traditional, indigenous belief systems in the rest of the world, theirs has been rather well preserved. They also see time as circular, have a 'World Tree', and a use the word for rainbow to describe dreams that take you to the upper world (reminds me of a certain rainbow bridge).

Quote:
The universe of the Mongols can be visualized by a circle, not only in the three dimensions, but also in time itself. Everything has a circular motion, the path of the sun from day to day, the cycle of time from year to year, and the cycle of all living spirits as they return to earth to be reborn again and again, the circle of the axes with the four directions and the center of the world: the axes to the upper world, the Eternal Heavens and down to the lower world, the Mother Earth. In a shaman's journeys the shaman can climb up the World Tree (the toroo of the world tree) or fly to the upper world, travel down with the spirit river to the lower world (the world river enters the middle world from its sources in the upper world), or the shaman can simply find a tunnel (channel) to follow it. The Dagur Mongols in Inner Mongolia used the word solongo (rainbow) for the shamans’ power dreams, which means that the shaman may be travelling in his sleep over the rainbow to the upper world.

Quote:
By the World Tree, which some say “stands at he border of day and night,” the World River enters the middle world from its sources in the upper world. According to the traditions of the Altai, Bayan Ami, lord of the forest animals, will be encountered during the ascent of this tree and will grant the shaman geese to assist him on his journey to the upper world. The top of the turge tree touches the sky by the Pole Star, the Altan Hadaas, the sky nail that holds up the heavens.


Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:08 am
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Brothers, just to add another view: this is from the "Bhaghavad Gita", chap. 15:

Quote:
Lord Shri Krishna continued: This phenomenal creation, which is both ephemeral and
eternal, is like a tree, but having its seed above in the Highest and its ramifications on this
earth below. The scriptures are its leaves, and he who understands this, knows.
Its branches shoot upwards and downwards, deriving their nourishment from the
Qualities; its buds are the objects of sense; and its roots, which follow the Law causing
man’s regeneration and degeneration, pierce downwards into the soil.
In this world its true form is not known, neither its origin nor its end, and its strength is
not understood., until the tree with its roots striking deep into the earth is hewn down by
the sharp axe of non-attachment.
Beyond lies the Path, from which, when found, there is no return. This is the Primal God
from whence this ancient creation has sprung.
The wise attain Eternity when, freed from pride and delusion, they have conquered their
love for the things of sense; when, renouncing desire and fixing their gaze on the Self, they
have ceased to be tossed to and fro by the opposing sensations, like pleasure and pain."


It always stroke me as a very interesting description of Yggdrasil and the 9 Worlds, and as a "guide" for a heroic behaviour!

Did Odin get the Runes because he has "ceased to be tossed to and fro by the opposing sensations, like pleasure and pain."?

What do you think?


Last edited by The_Archer on Thu Feb 26, 2009 12:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Feb 19, 2009 7:16 pm
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I read somewhere that modern Hinduism came out of Indo-European Odinism brought to Asia by the Vedic Aryans. Which is why many of our gods share a distant resemblance to Hindu Gods. And why so many of our ideals are common to eastern religions.

Not sure if it's true or not, but it'd be damn interesting research.


Thu Feb 19, 2009 8:18 pm
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An interesting thread indeed.

I don't have much knowledge of Hindu myths but found this article that touches on what Coyotero said. It explains some of the Hindu gods and makes associations between them and Norse , Greek/Roman gods using language and the characteristics of the gods themselves.
Some of the correlations seem a bit of a stretch but it is still thought provoking.
http://www.fravahr.org/spip.php?article186


Thu Feb 19, 2009 10:22 pm
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Coyotero wrote:
I read somewhere that modern Hinduism came out of Indo-European Odinism brought to Asia by the Vedic Aryans. Which is why many of our gods share a distant resemblance to Hindu Gods. And why so many of our ideals are common to eastern religions.

Not sure if it's true or not, but it'd be damn interesting research.


Yes, it is true. Which makes them valid for Indo-European comparative studies.

I also find it interesting that some of the symbolism survived even in early Buddhist works.


Thu Feb 19, 2009 10:40 pm
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Look at the persistence of the fylfrot.


Thu Feb 19, 2009 11:29 pm
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Another point in reply to The Archer:

In my book I look briefly at the soul-as-chariot image which was found both in Plato's Phaedrus and the Gita, and I compare the basic idea with a passage in the Old English poem, "The Wanderer."

I conclude that the Old English side has a very clear parallel to the idea of restraint of impulses in (in my translation):

No weary one might Wyrd withstand
Nor the untamed heart bring help
Therefore those eager for glory most oft
The dreariness in their breast bind fast.

The idea that dreary, cheerless, and fearful emotions must be reined in seems to be exactly parallel to Plato's treatment of the subject and fairly close to the treatment in the Gita.

Now, the metaphor is quite different, but the basic elements are the same. Note that the Germanic people didn't use chariots in the same way the Greeks, Celts, or Vedic peoples did, so it would be unlikely that the same metaphor would have survived. However, the imagery of binding and restraining these impulses seems quite equivalent.


Fri Feb 20, 2009 12:33 am
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Very interesting!
I couldn't help but think of Thor's chariot and the two goats...
Could it be an echo of this teaching?


Wed Feb 25, 2009 2:56 pm
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The_Archer:

After careful thought, I have concluded that it is an echo. Chariots were no longer used as practical vehicles by the Germanic peoples from early on, but there are a number of reasons to think that they might have been used for ceremonial roles nonetheless. See the fact that the Trundholm Sun Chariot is a two-wheeled vehicle.


Wed Feb 25, 2009 4:00 pm
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I agree with you.

Maybe it's an ancient and commom basis of the Indo-European lore.
Or an example of "similar causes producing similar effects" -- in this case, on the minds and souls of poets, philosophers and warriors...

Remeber, also, that in Buddhist iconography the spiked wheel (used in chariots) is a symbol of the Dharma, the Eight-fold Path. And in Greek mythology Ixion was chained to such a wheel. In the former, a symbol of those who stay in the center, mastering the spinning of this world ("dukha"). IN the latter, one who's dragged by it...


Thu Feb 26, 2009 1:07 pm
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einhverfr wrote:
Anyone else notice that the Tree is associated with enlightenment or divine inspiration both in the ordeals of Odin and Buddha?

I would argue that the Indian concepts of The Tree are probably very closely analogous to the Norse.


"Indian" Buddha was an "Aryan", his caste of the Vedic times was that of a prince/warrior. Anyone who knows anything about Vedicism or it's indian ******* form, hindu would know that the caste system was "racial".

The disciples of the Buddha wrote what makes the perfect "Buddha",






Here is what I found at a Slavic site, which is pretty in line with other sources I've read.

http://slavija.proboards.com/index.cgi? ... hread=5381


I know i will probably get flamed for it..but whatever..

Siddhartha Gautama Buddha, 563 BC – 483 BC or 410/400 BC (गौतम बुद)

Having been born a Kshatriya, he was probably of Indo-Aryan ethnic heritage and had the physical characteristics most common to the Aryan warrior castes of south-central Asia, typically found among the Vedic Aryans, Scythians and Persians. This stands in contrast to the depictions of him as East Asian looking, which are generally created by Buddhists in those areas.

Siddhartha Gautama was a legendary spiritual teacher from ancient India and the historical founder of Buddhism. He is universally recognized by Buddhists as the Supreme Buddha of our age.

Siddhartha was born a Sakyan prince (Indo-Scythian (Scythians were the direct ancestors of Russians)) north of Benares at Kapliavastu.

Often, he is referred to in Buddhism as Shakyamuni Buddha or "The Awakened One of the Shakya/Sakya Clan."



At the age of 29, deeply troubled by the suffering he saw around him, he renounced his privileged life, his wife and child, and went out among the Shramana (shaman) ascetics to seek understanding. After 6 years of struggle he finally understood the meaning of enlightenment under the legendary Bo-tree.

After this he was recognized as a Buddha (meaning "The Awakened One"). He taught for some forty years then died at Kusinagara in Oudh, India. According to the Mahayana tradition the Buddha did not actually die, because the Buddha is a spiritual entity called the Dharmakaya.

Estimates of the number of Buddhists vary from 230 to 500 million, but the most common figure today is between 350 and 400 million.

* Theravāda Buddhism, using Pāli as its scriptural language, is the dominant form of Buddhism in Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Myanmar. Also the Dalit Buddhist movement in India (inspired by B. R. Ambedkar) practices Theravada.
* East Asian forms of Buddhism that use scriptures in Chinese are dominant in most of China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Singapore and Vietnam as well as within Chinese and Japanese communities within Indochina, Southeast Asia and the West.
* Northern Buddhism, using the Tibetan language, is found in Tibet and the surrounding area of India, Bhutan, Mongolia, Nepal and China.
* Most Buddhist groups in the West are at least nominally affiliated to some eastern tradition listed above. An exception is the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order, though they can be considered Mahayanist in a broad sense.

At the present time, the teachings of all three branches of Buddhism have spread throughout the world, and Buddhist texts are increasingly translated into local languages. While in the West, Buddhism is often seen as exotic and progressive, in the East, Buddhism is regarded as familiar and part of the establishment. Buddhists in Asia are frequently well organized and well funded. In a number of countries, it is recognized as an official religion and receives state support. In the West, Buddhism is recognized as one of the growing spiritual influences.

Also Buddha means the enlightened one so the Asiatic looking statues of him might have been some Asians who achieved the state of nirvana and necessarily the original Buddha.

Yes Buddha was of Indo-Aryan origin. Indian sources describe his physical characteristics very accurately:
-He was very tall
-He had dark hair
-He had golden-colored skin
-He had blue eyes

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physical_c ... the_Buddha


Vedicism or as many know it in it's Indian form, Hindu... has nothing to do with Indians, but was the ancient religion of the Indo-Aryan peoples, kin to the Norse, celts, Romans, Greeks, Persians.

"Aryan" is a catch all term for the above, it goes back to the time when we were all one people, a Solar people, hence the Swastika and Sky/father God religions.

Hope that helps


Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:07 pm
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May I just mention the Kabbalistic tree of life?


Thu Nov 10, 2011 5:10 pm
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Kabbalistic Tree of Life.

Contains vast information, and is a very intimate geometry.

Not many people know about it.


Wed Nov 23, 2011 6:00 pm
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It seems as though there might be many relationships between the Norther American tribes and those of Northern Europe, If you look at some of the different symbols there is a common thread and similarity to them. Though my studies i have found that the sun dance a Lakota ceremony could actually have been multicultural,( I am not saying that we borrowed it or stole it by any means) Just that it happened organically because of how in tune we where to nature and the spirit worlds. Three has many different representations in many different cultures, I would also like to direct attention to the spring festival where participants tie up to the tree and dance around, this also seen as very similar to The sun Dance, So i purpose that do to the crusades and religious persecution that our ceremony in fact had to change and thus it did to a more "acceptable" Form to be able to transcend the ages. This is just a theory, but I see truth in it. what do you all think?


Thu Sep 26, 2013 5:10 pm
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Wood and trees are often associated with divinity and enlightenment in many traditions. Our tradition teaches that man originated from trees. Could Odin and his brothers found a form of enlightenment when they uplifted our ancestors? Did they do so expecting and knowing that we would enlighten ourselves?

Just food for thought.


Sat Oct 26, 2013 7:32 am
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The cosmic tree is of great importance through many cultures and for each of us, in the creation story the 3 brothers Wodan Villi and Ve found ask and embala on the shores of the mighty creation, and brought forth the sacred gifts upon which we all carry. Through the understanding and meditating and constantly being reminded of the relationship to this great tree. We ourselves are pieces of this great being (as well as the great magically charged void/ gunundagap/rune-mystery). The symbolism that is contained in the mythos can bring one to a greater understanding of the processes of expansion. Just as there are as many trees in this world there are cultures, each unique and bare the fruits for each who are willing to sit and enjoy the company of their ancestors.


Wed Apr 19, 2017 11:59 pm
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