Maple – Dreams – Nine of Hardwoods (Swords)
Genus: Acer – Family: Sapindaceae
Maple encourages us to tap into the hidden wisdom of our dreams and nightmares. Anxiety and fear may be causing sleepless nights that seem beyond our control, leaving us feel unempowered. This is an important time to take control of our thoughts and actions.
The genus name for Maple is Acer, meaning “sharp” in Latin. This is based on the characteristic sharp points of its leaves.
Sugar maple Acer saccharum, also known as hard or rock maple, is native to North America. Sugar maples display exceptionally colorful leaves in fall before going into the darkness of winter as a celebration of the inner work ahead. During the freezing months of winter, they pull sap up from their roots in order to survive and recharge. In early spring, this sap flows downward through the tree and back into the roots. If tapped by humans, it is transformed into sweet maple syrup, reminding us of our ability to shift our reality.
The Sycamore Maple Acer pseudoplatanus is the “type species” of the Maple genus, which is common throughout Europe. The name “sycamore” is based on the ancient Egyptian sycomore fig, Ficus sycomorus identified in scripture as a large nurturing shade tree. Pseudoplatanus or “false plane” is descriptive of its mottled bark, which is a hallmark of plane trees in the Platanus genus. In reality, the Sycamore Maple is neither a sycamore tree nor a plane tree! This convoluted story of the maple tree’s true identity is a classic example of how perceptions influence words and words influence our perceptions. If our reality becomes confused it can create anxiety, fear and doubt. Often our subconscious tries to sort this out during dreamtime, which can lead to bizarre images and thoughts. During times like this it is important to take stock of what we know to be true until we gain clarity.
Sugar maples are one of the few species in the Acer genus considered a “climax species,” meaning its appearance signals a mature eco-system. The majority of maples are “pioneer species.” Sugar maples reach heights of 150 ft. tall and can live for 400 years. They are seen as symbols of beauty, strength and inner sweetness.
Message: Sugar maple reminds us to tap into our dreams by allowing our emotions to acknowledged for what they are. If we are experiencing nightmares or wake up feeling lethargic, sad, fearful or tired sugar maple encourages us to seek out the deeper meaning. Often our fears and insecurities are reflections of the expectations and perceptions we have placed on our self. By owning our dreams, we empowered our subconscious to bring our thoughts to consciousness. By truly seeing how we are perceiving ourselves or our situation we can begin to see the areas we need to focus on and the changes we need to make in our lives. Fearless dreaming can help us release our deepest and darkest fears.
Challenge: Restless sleep, inability to dream or remember dreams. Being resistant to following your dreams or allowing dreams to guide you. Could also be excessive day dreaming.