Tree of Life Part 2 The tree has in its image five major components: roots, trunk, branches, leaves and fruits/ flowers. The tree draws water and nutrients from the soil. The trunk carries these nutrients throughout its body and helps in creating new branches. The energy needed to convert these nutrients into life sustaining food is taken directly from the sun. The surrounding air helps to make this a continuous process of life. In terms of iconography, the roots go deep into the soil help to keep a tree firmly in place. The trunk is the main body of the tree and rises above the earth. The branches reach out as far as possible to go higher and higher as if trying to reach up to the sky. The leaves are the sign of growth. The tree is the only living being that grows throughout its life. The flowers and the fruits carry within them the seed for a new plant that will become another tree. It is no wonder then that the tree is icon of life. And the icon is called a tree of life. As a tree that can grow all its life, it is automatically a symbol of evolution, emanation and expansion. It evolves from a sapling to plant to tree as the years pass. It emanates from the depths of the soil, breaks out into the open land and reaches for the sky through its branches. Its leaves are continually sprouting from new branches to expand into a large canopy. As the tree takes time to grow, it sees many weathers, it survives wind, rain, sun for many years and stands firm and strong. That is perhaps the reason why people use the tree to personify virtues such as strength, maturity, wisdom and steadfastness. It provides shelter from rain, sun and wind for all creatures seeking it under its protection. Science also has taught us that the most precious oxygen that humans need to live is provided by trees. It provides food to humans in the form of its fruits. Its flowers carry seeds that will create more such trees that will provide oxygen, fruits and shelter. Because of this nature of it as a provider and nurturer, it is very often seen to symbolize femininity and fertility.


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