White Ash : Ash in Spirituality


Ash at UVM. Stadlin, Eric (2013).

The Wabanaki origin story states that human life, at least in their tribe, began when a black ash tree was shot with an arrow and they sprung from the hole. Norse mythology similarly holds that a massive ash tree, Yggdrasil, cradles our world and other realms of existence. Moving south through Europe, British tradition says that the staffs of saints have rooted themselves as ash trees when cast down. The German god Woton is believed to have sacrificed himself on an ash. References in the Jewish Old Testament to manna, the saving grace that fed the Israelites, are now believed to be referencing the sap of an ash. The sap is especially important in Greek culture, used not only for ancient rainmaking ceremonies, but also as an important linguistic and mythological touchstone. The Greek word for ash is meli, meaning honey, and the meliai (tree nymphs) of Greek myth can be pictured to be dwellers of the tree.