Trees represent life, wisdom, and the feminine divine.
Ancient Israelites worshipped a female goddess, called Asherah, who was the wife or consort of El (God the Father) and mother of Jehovah. She was associated with trees and worshipped in homes and hilltop forest sanctuaries. Although all trees can be symbols of the feminine divine, the oak, tamarisk, date, palm, sycamore, and olive trees are especially associated with Asherah. Because of this association with trees, the Feminine Divine is associated with sacred trees, including the Tree of Life.
How does your understanding of the story of the Tree of Life change if you see the Tree of Life as a symbol of Heavenly Mother?
Water is essential to human life, to the growth of crops, and to cleaning oneself for either hygiene or ritual reasons.
The Israelite goddess Asherah was also known as “Lady Asherah of the Sea, which some scholars interpret as “She Who Treads/Subdues the Sea”.
How does your understanding of baptism change if you think of the water as a symbol of Heavenly Mother?
Another symbol of the feminine divine are snakes or serpents. Because snakes periodically shed their skins, they are associated with transformation, rebirth/regeneration, and healing.
In ancient times, the snake was not a symbol of evil or danger but symbolized female wisdom, power, and regeneration. Snakes acted as companions to female goddesses. For example, the Great Mother Goddess of Minoan Crete, who ruled over paradise, was often portrayed with a snake in each hand.
How does your understanding of the story of the Garden of Eden change if you see the serpent as a symbol of Heavenly Mother? How does it change your understanding of the Israelites being commanded to look upon the serpent on the staff to be healed?
Ancient Sumerians worshipped a Mother Goddess who was often portrayed in steles as a dancing bee. Ancient Israelites used honey from bees to create honey cakes for use in rituals celebrating Asherah, their version of a Mother Goddess.
Bees travel from flower to flower, collecting pollen from many sources to create into honey. The queen bee leads her hive in creation of cells and honey. Similarly, the Feminine Divine can guide our search for truth wherever it is found.
Trees, water, serpents, and bees are just four symbols of the Feminine Divine. Recognizing these and other symbols can enrich personal efforts to connect with the Feminine Divine. What other symbols of the Feminine Divine do you know of? How do you incorporate symbolism in your celebrations of Heavenly Mother?