Magickal Associations of Birch
Birch is associated with the deities - Frigg and Idunna
and is the first tree of the Ogham. Birch is considered
feminine and is associated with the planet Venus, the
element water, the God Thor, and imbued with the powers
of protection, exorcism, and purification. It represents
new starts and new journeys. The Birch tree symbolizes
Gracefulness; Meekness; Self sacrifice; Devotion.
the Witches Goddess by Janet and Stewart Farrar:
"FRIGG, FREYA, Freyja: ('Well-Beloved, Spouse, Lady')
Most revered of the Tuetonic goddesses. (Frigg and Freya
seem to have been originally the same goddess, then to
have developed as two, finally tending to re-merge.) Wife
and sister of Odin. Owner of a falcon-plumed robe, in
which she flew through the air. Mother of Baldur, god
of light. She protected marriages and made them fruitful
but was herself often unfaithful to Odin. Commander of
the Valkyries (originally her priestesses), she often
fought alongside Odin. Originally a Moon goddess riding
in a chariot drawn by two cats, and may have been priestess
of a hawk totem clan. "
Tuetonic. Lived in Asgard and possessed magical apples,
by eating which the gods never grew old. Born of flowers
like the Welsh Blodeuwedd. Wife of Bragi, god of poetry.
Festivals: 3 and 21 of March."
most of the Germanic languages this rune has the meaning
of "birch". However, the Anglo-Saxons translated
it as "poplar".
Birkana is the Germanic name, its Anglo-Saxon name was
Beorc, and its old Norse name Bjarkan (see also Derivations
below). It is the Goddess rune. Its "B" shape
suggests a pair of breasts, and it is the rune of birth,
mothers and children. It has the qualities of secretiveness
and protection, as does the tree. The rune is associated
with the goddesses Bechta, who also looks after abandoned
children and Frigga who is the mother figure. Birkana
is not just the birch, but represents the whole world
of plants and trees.
means protection, exorcism, purification and new beginnings,
also cleansing of past and for vision quests.
is interesting to note that the birch is one of the few
trees native to Iceland. It is also thought to be one
of the first trees to have appeared in the north after
the glaciers retreated. Some authorities say that the
birch, rather than the ash is the Nordic world tree, Yggdrasil.
the people of northern Europe, the birch was a sacred
tree. In the Kalevala, a Finnish epic, the birch is designated
as a holy tree of great use to mankind. The Germanic peoples
dedicated it to their god of thunder, Thor.