Tall Cedar trees in forest.
Tall Cedar trees in forest.

The cedar tree has been revered for its spiritual significance for thousands of years. Its wood was used for the doors of sacred temples and burned in cleansing ceremonies for purification. The tree was thought to house important gods and to be an entrance to higher realms.

Origins

Ancient Japanese Cedar tree.
Ancient Japanese Cedar tree.

The English word cedar comes from the Hebrew "qatar," meaning to smudge, indicating cedar wood was used in purification rituals and cleansing. In the Himalayas, cedar is called "deodar" from the Sanskrit word "devdar," meaning timber of the gods.

History

Senior man reading Bible.
Senior man reading Bible.

Ancient Sumeria revered the cedar over 7,000 years ago, calling it the World Tree, the abode of Ea, their chief god. The Bible has numerous references to the cedar, including its use in the Ark of the Covenant.

Types

Lebanese Cedar tree.
Lebanese Cedar tree.

Lebanese cedar is found in the Middle East, while the larger deodar variety is found in the Himalayas and grows to a height of 200 feet.

Geography

Close up of Cedar tree bark.
Close up of Cedar tree bark.

Deodar is found in the mountainous regions of India and Pakistan and is the Pakistani national tree. The cedar is also the national tree in its native Lebanon, but is now found only in small groves.

Benefits

Cedar nuts.
Cedar nuts.

The cedar has been used for healing, purification and for spiritual protection. Its spiritual properties are supposed to promote peaceful thoughts and help interpret messages from the inner self.