Western Red Cedar

No tree is more symbolic of the Pacific Northwest than Western Red Cedar.  No wonder that it is called Mother and Long Life Maker among Salish People, for it has provided clothing, tools, shelter, canoes, medicine and many other things that contributed to a rich culture.  Cedar leaf is one of my favorite winter medicines because it fights infections and stimulates immunity.  I chop the leaves and use them to do a steam for coughs and sinus infections.  For a full description on how to use cedar click here.

 

Western Red Cedar

I am the heat of your hearth on the cold winter nights, the friendly shade screening you            from summer sun, and the dancing bows that capture your imagination.
I am the beam that holds your house, the board of your table, and the roof that shelters            you from rain.
I am the handle of your shovel, the bark of your basket, and the hull of your canoe.
I am the medicine that heals you, the incense that carries your prayers, and tea that is            used to cleanse your home.
I am the wood of your cradle and the shell of your coffin.
I am the breath of kindness and the flower of beauty.
“Ye who pass by me, listen to my prayer:  Harm me not.”

-Adapted by Elise Krohn from “Prayer of the Woods,” a Portuguese forest preservation prayer that has been used for more than 1,000 years.  Author unknown

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