Who has not felt a sense of awe, silence, stillness, and presence in an ancient woodland or forest or in front of a sacred tree? Humankind has held trees and woodlands in awe and reverence since the dawn of time. We depend on nature for the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the services nature provides. The book, Our Future in Nature: Trees, Spirituality, and Ecology, written by CSVPA-member Edmund Barrow (in a non-CSVPA capacity), is about the importance of sacred trees and groves in our stress-filled and increasingly urban world. Sacred trees and sacred groves transcend race, color, and creed. They are found all over our fragile planet. Where there is a tree, there is a sacred tree.
This book will appeal to religious and spiritual traditions, to the conservation and environmental movements, and those concerned with education, health and peace. It offers its readers means to take better care of our only home—planet Earth. Often undervalued, unrecognized, or disrespected, sacred trees and groves are conserved against mind-boggling pressures. For example, there is a sacred fig tree between two shops in one of the main streets in Hanoi, Vietnam. There is a one-hectare sacred grove in the centre of Kumasi, a city of 2.5 million people in Ghana; the over 150,000 sacred groves in India; and the sacred hill forests of every village in Yunnan, South China.
stories, places of poetic and scriptural importance, and places to connect. Many in humankind moved to the more formal religions, which focused on the dominion of man and our control of nature. This set humankind apart from nature. Yet we are part of nature. We are nature and part of Mother Earth. This forms the basis for the inherent spirituality we all feel when we are in nature, in a sacred grove, or beside a lake or the seashore.
There are a number of key messages and practical steps we can take as individuals, communities, and nations. In this way, the importance of sacred trees and groves will be better respected and built upon by religious and spiritual groups, by both the conservation and environmental movements, and by us in our individual and family lives. We can all plant and nurture a tree somewhere. We can all hold a tree of our choice to be sacred—at least for ourselves. Sacred trees and sacred groves are important entry points for diverse groups to connect humankind, nature, and spirit and help us find solutions for many of humankind’s ills. We can all have or find our piece of nature that is sacred to us. It could be a sacred tree or grove or part of our garden or a tree in the park or a potted tree in our home. They help us reconnect with nature, respect how important nature is, and serve as a basis for finding solutions to the challenges we face regarding nature, our spirituality, education, health, and peace. Sacred trees and sacred groves are portals for us to engage and reconnect.
This book is available from:
If you want to contact Edmund Barrow: Edmund@barrow.co.ke
ISBN Numbers: Hardback | 978-1-9822-2664-0 Paperback | 978-1-9822-2663-3 E-book | 978-1-9822-2665-7