January 1, 2012

New Beginings- Forgetting the past and pressing toward the things yet unseen! Happy New Year!!

Happy New Year everyone! What better way to ring in 2012 than to start fresh? Feels kind of like a bed with crisp, clean sheets! Is there anything that feels better?
There is a freedom in just surrendering to the present moment, letting go of the past and pressing on into the mystery of the unknown... It is true liberation to experience the present and anticipate and lean into the future. I am excited.

Wheatfield with Cypresses, Vincent Van Gogh, 1889

We have this amazing Cypress in the store...it is full of life and essence! I decided I would research the plant that I had admired so much over the Christmas season to see what I could find. Turns out the Cypress has intrigued many over the centuries. It's the most photographed tree in the world and Van Gogh included Cypresses in many of his paintings. The tree also has many deep cultural significances, which I found very interesting.
Langlois Bridge, Vincent Van Gogh, 1888

The Cypress is considered by many to mean death and rebirth, which seems like an apt thing to ponder during this season of new beginnings. In Greek mythology, it was believed that the Cypress grew out of the grief of a teenager who accidentally killed a deer that belonged to Apollo. It was out of this poor boy's sorrow that the legend of the young Cyparissus is brought to life. Through his sadness and mourning, Cyparissus' body was transformed into the tall, strong and noble looking Cypress tree. I love the imagery of this story and somehow it gives me hope. Out of his despair, he was transformed and brought back to life with a strong presence for many generations to come. He gave up all that he was and was made something new!
In the Christian tradition, the Cypress is a symbol of death, and signifies the heavens calling. With its column-like shape that reaches toward the heavens, much like a church spire, the Cypress has deep-rooted relationship with the heavenly realm and divine light. The evergreen leaves have become a symbol of resurrection and new life.

Starry Night, Vincent Van Gogh, 1889

In Turkey, the Cypress is the symbol of the universe. Its roots, tall trunk and upward branches represent the three levels of life: birth, midlife and the attainment of heaven, with the evergreen leaves representing immortality.
To the people of Iran, the Cypress symbolizes many attributes of beauty and form. Persian poets would make reference to loved ones as being "Cypress-like." For them, this term perfectly described a woman's grace in motion, slender body and balanced, poised frame. The Cypress represented youthfulness, truthfulness and was also used to describe a  person of upright character.  It is said that in the presence of a Cypress, it would be impossible for someone who breathes in its scent to be deceitful. Mystics have believed that because the Cypress is an evergreen and that its branches are never barren, it is truly liberated and liberating: perfection without desolation.

I will forever look at the sweet sights and smells of the Cypresses that enter my store in a new and magical way.  It will forever be a testament and symbol of death, birth and transformation, and I love that when I take in its amazing scent I can be reminded that I truly can trust myself and live in the abundance of that freedom! 

May 2012 and the symbols of the Cypress bring you focus on the new beginnings that await you. May you surrender to the present, and to all that the future has in store for you!  May you all experience life anew;  put the past behind you and lean upwards, like the branches of the cypress towards a new life or a new way to live. Remember that the divine resides within you and that deceit can not exist in presence of the divine! May the knowledge of that profound fragrance impact you in a deep and meaningful way!  Happy New Year!! And here's to an exciting and wonderful 2012!!

If you are interesting in learning more interesting things about the Cypress, please peruse these great sites that I got some of my information from:
The Meaning Behind Cypress Trees
What is the Symbolism of the Cypress Tree?
20/20 Site, Cypress Tree

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