Cult of the Yew, The
An astounding spiritual history of Yew's supreme power.
The ancients revered this sacred tree that has existed on Earth for 200 million years - some trees, still alive today, even survived the last ice age. This immortal tree was therefore venerated as the triple goddess of life, death and rebirth, and was believed to be the guardian of our planet. With climate change threatening our existence, many are now turning to the Tree of Life, identified with the ancient yew, for answers to our predicament. Through groundbreaking research, Janis Fry answers our modern yearning to make sense of life through a god/dess of Nature that guides our lives and connects us to people and events, to which we are answerable as custodians of life on Earth. The Cult of the Yew: Tree of Life, Mystery and Magic explores the spiritual history of this iconic tree and aims to change how those who read it think and understand life in these times.
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A detailed, highly readable and fascinating history of this remarkable tree that some might well call a biological avatar of immortality, what is told in the Foreword (by Dr Patrick Curry) is that a culture which fails to honour the Yew, which cannot even see it as anything other than a simplistic tree, is doomed. For the extinction of the Yew and of humanity are inseparable, in a common Necrocene. An in-depth look at all aspects of the botany, cultural history, and remarkable mythology of the Yew tree, The Cult of the Yew: Tree of Life, Mystery and Magic showcases just how it is one of the most fascinating and versatile life forms on Earth, botanically rich and intriguing, and culturally almost without comparison. In closing, this is an awe-inspiring study of the Yew and one which reveals that in history, mythology, religion, folklore, medicine, and warfare, the Yew bears a timeless, living mystery witness to a deep relationship with mankind. ~ Exclusive Magazine, Review
I have always said that the yew mysteries are 'living mysteries', representing the embodiment of an otherworldly wisdom stream preserved from ancient times by the world's surviving ancient yew trees. According to Janis Fry, the Cult of the Yew that was once widespread in Britain, throughout mainland Europe and beyond, had its roots in ancient Mesopotamia. Fry also says that the yew was the original Tree of Life in ancient Egypt and traces it back to Heliopolis, some 15,000 years ago. From Egypt, this special yew was transported to Eden and dispersed throughout that part of the world forming a bloodline of sacred yews - many of which are still alive today! As dramatic as these claims are, Janis Fry provides an abundance of multi-disciplinary evidence to convincingly back them up. To a modern consciousness educated into a materialistic culture, the mysteries of the cult of yew are highly elusive. Direct experience of the consciousness of an ancient yew is paramount and yet paradoxically such experience can only be gained through the adoption of perceptual principles as given by the yew herself! In the ancient mystery schools, the initiate would be given the fundamentals of a mystery knowledge through which to develop a higher capacity for spiritual perception. Today and with regards to the mysteries of yew, it may seem that we have lost such a capacity. However, after 40 years of dedicated research and direct experience, Janis Fry surprises us by offering key elements of a mystery knowledge based on the yew - a knowledge that will become essential learning to all modern yew-enthusiasts and would be yew-initiates. Through this resuscitation of a mystery knowledge based around the yew as Tree of Life Janis Fry also invites a radical re-evaluation and re-invigoration of the esoteric roots of Christianity, especially in relation to the British Isles. For example, we learn that some of Britain's ancient yews - mainly yews in Wales - were planted by holy hermits travelling from the Holy Land - and that Joseph of Arimathea carried a yew branch from the Tree of Life into Britain and met with Silurian Druids in Wales. We also learn of the Armenian yew tribe that brought sacred yews to Devon and Dorset. This book offers other astounding revelations concerning the Golden Bough, the area of location of the Garden of Eden, the dragon-serpent yew god/desses, the bleeding yews of Nevern linking with the Roman Emperor Constantine, Jesus' use of a yew wand and the site of King Arthur's burial on a Yew Isle. At last - and thanks to the courageous work of Janis Fry - we can confidently claim the yew as the original Tree of Life and as the divinely incarnate guide to human evolution during ancient times and now reclaimed for the modern era. Are you ready to step through the veil into the magic and mysteries of the cult of yew? ~ Michael Dunning Yew Shaman www.yewmysteries,com (America)
Janis Fry's endeavours to spread appreciation and reverence for ancient yew trees spans over four decades and is an inspiration to all of us who love trees. As one of the longest living life forms on our planet, the yew tree has rightly been celebrated as the Tree of Life. In this book, Janis takes us on a journey of discovery and wonder that skilfully weaves together the magic and history of trees ~ Andy Egan, Director, Fellowship of the Trees and former CEO of International Tree Foundation