In the time of this world when the lightdecreases, the birch emanates a glow,resistant to the death of nature in winter times, imposing itself in a life of constant renewal. In the Proto-Indo-European, its etymological root, in theGermanic languages, Baltic and Slavic,this tree is idealized as the fifthessence of white. The birch is the firsttree to bloom after thawing, it is themessenger of the breeding powers, and it is essential to thesurvival of all species, it marks its begining. It has inspirational qualitiesthat transmit light and innocence, it isthe sacred tree to the shamans of Europe and the vehicle of the journeys of the shaman in out of the body expiriences. It is a symbol of life, energyand protection, and in Portugal, this is called Vidoeiro or Bétula tree and it isassociated with wild boars. Bétula comos from the Germanic name,Beorgan which means, “To Protect”.The rebirth of this tree after the winteralso brings the old rituals of the hunt.The wild boar is a challenge to the courage and bravery of the hunter.
The Boar carries a strong symbolism of abundance, celebrated in Yule, in the sacrificial death of the animal in honor of Frey, god of the sun rays and fertility, of the Nordic Mythology.
In Portugal the ancients honored the wild boar, depending on the meat to their survival. The killing of the Wild boar or the pig, is ritualized in the colder months, ensuring survival through the winter and upto the rest of the year.
Autumn is dying with the arrival of winter, however, the nature surrenders to the the magic and to thehope of rebirth. The Birch tree produces seeds that can remain alive at low temperatures, as a mother’s womb at the peak of fertility.
Freya, the goddess of prosperity and magic in the Norse Mythology, travels through the Cosmic worldson the back of the “battle boar“, Hildsvín / Hildisvíni.
The birch rod contains the fertilizing and regenerative powers. It is the evocation of the magical instrument of celestial influences. Its branches are great for campfires at the Walpurgis Night and in Haustablót. The slow combustion, the wood fueled the torches that lit the bridal bed, involving theenvironment in a pleasant fragrance.