I wish I could tell you how long this image has been with me. It derives from a Siberian Shamanic story or myth. I do not know how I received the information, but this is an ancient image. Ravens nesting in the Tree of Life. I do not know the meaning of it but I hesitated for at least a year, maybe longer to make this simple sketch. It carries so much power in my consciousness, power with deep history that has meaning in some unknown tradition BCE.
COMMENT from Sandy:
I wanted to include an image that I think speaks to yours. It is a quilt by an Alaskan fiber artist who is also a Unitarian. You can read an explication of the symbolism here: http://www.uuff.org/quilt.shtml
About the Ravens specifically, she says, “At the heart of the tree, a raven brings life to the quilt while evoking the next line of the hymn: “Wings set me free….” Another northern motif, Raven is the trickster of Native myth. In his guise as trickster, Raven brings both wisdom and humor into our sanctuary. Behind him the suggestion of mountains calls us to lift our eyes, seek physical and spiritual challenges, and remember the powerful role that the land plays in our lives.”
I’m saying that is exactly what your Ravens mean. You have beat back the dreaded death-bringer, cancer, and I believe you recently got a clean bill of health on a mammogram? Do you feel that death has turned benign and is now creatively nesting in your tree of life?
It’s your image, and what it means and the power it carries is ultimately yours, but I agree it is a very moving image that speaks to the ancient of days in all of us.
Raven’s Tree of Life
Pieced and Quilted by Stephanie Rudig, 2005