The Sacred Grove
Also called: Kode
When appearing in divination Eabhadh indicates that there is a need to resolve differences and misunderstandings taking place around you. This may indicate that you are bring called to the role of peacemaker or you should be looking for one to support you. It is important that both sides are willing to listen and work together, regardless of how right they perceive their position to be. Comprise is a key concept and you should not be afraid to lead by example, using fairness and wisdom rather than the heat of emotion or sacrifice your own ethics in order to be perceived as the hero or popular.
The Sacred Grove
Eabhadh is not associated with a single tree but rather the sacred groves of the Celtic world. These are places where sacred trees, such as Aspen and Birch or Oak and Hawthorn, grow together where it is believed the Druids would meet to discuss grievances and hand down judgments in their role of law bringers. Whether or not this was historically the case the groves of sacred trees, particularly when they grow near a stream or pool, are still considered special by new age Pagan. Given the role of the druid and the associations of judgment, wisdom, conflict resolution and communication, it makes sense that Eabhadh divinatory meaning is consistent with these themes.
Theme: Communication, conflict resolution, wisdom, judgement, deeper knowledge
Eabhadh Eabhadh EabhadhSuggested Galdur
Eee Bahhh Aaaad Eee Bahhh Aaaad
Eee Eee Eee Bahhh Aaaad
Eabhadh Eabhadh Eabhadh
Kode Kode Kode
Koooo d Kooo d Koooo d
K K Koooo d
Kode Kode Kode
As a sacred space the Sacred Grove is the perfect setting for communal worship. Invoke the energy/presence of Eabhadh to make any space sacred.
Sacred Groves were also associated with oath giving in the context of judgment and conflict resolution. Inscribed the letter Kode upon any of the sacred trees and upon it swear oaths / make promises using phrases reminiscent of the Druids for example “In the face of the Sun and in the eye of Light I do swear…”
Carry wooden charms inscribed with Eabhadh during times where communication is clear, or in situations which may become combative.
Mythology and Literature
Though the letter appears in scholarly Ogham texts from the 12-14th century the interpretations discussed above are quite modern in origin. It seems that Liz and Colin Murray were the first to introduce Eabhadh (also known to some as Kode) in association with the sacred grove in their book Celtic Tree Oracle.
Over time other authors on Ogham have built upon the associations, variously describing Eabhadh as being associated with conflict resolution and communication as well as deeper wisdom and the connection between the worlds of Gods and men. John Michael Greer says that it is “a few of central balance and infinite possibility, symbolized by a grove of many trees; the presence of many factors, the possibility of freedom.”
As touched on earlier, ancient peoples across Europe have held particular groves of trees sacred. Depending on the culture these were meeting places of man, sacred spaces of communal worship and the place where man and Gods could communicate through devotion or prophecy. This continues today, though less formalised perhaps, with many Pagans in the modern age finding a sense of peace and connection in such places. In any case these spaces are sacred and the dress should not be pruned or the wood harvested for mundane purposes, unless essential to the health of the trees. Gathering wood for sacred purposes should be performed will all due reverence and offerings to the spirit of place and tree, and then only with clear permission obtained through divination and other spirit communication.
In the sacred grove, to old gods of the northIn the Sacred Grove by Patricia67
to rowan, ash, oak and thorn they call forth
the rites, offerings of blood, milk and earth
for these gnarled wise branches are gods of rebirth.
Here the hazel drips soft her poisonous milk,
twisting roots form an altar of green mossy silk
where birds fear to perch, the wind dare not sway
for here, the trees speak, gently whispering the way.
Great roots speak to earth of seed and growth,
leaves beg for the rain, each a tiny green oath
to ancestral gods of sea, stone and wood
in the druid grove where the sacred trees stood.
These dark tales of the north, how strange they may seem
but they are not quite as remote as we deem!
Toss a coin for a wish, or knock wood to shape fate…
Ah vibrations of ancient ways in us still resonate.
Sources and Further Reading
Mileage may vary. The Forfeda are a later addition to the ogham alphabet which are sometimes including in divination sets. There is a diversity of names and meanings ascribed to the symbols of the forfeda and what is offered here is my own interpretation. Please take the information provided here in conjunction with other sources of information.