The majestic, heavily buttressed kapok tree (Ceiba pentandra) is revered across a number of cultures and continents. To the Mayans he’s none other than the tree of life: the Axis Mundi that holds up the cosmos and serves as the central pillar that links the underworld, land, and sky. According to authors Rosita Arvigo and Nadine Epstein in Rainforest Home Remedies, “In Mayan, the tree is called yax che. Yax has three meanings—green, first, and sacred. Che is tree.”
While you absolutely must not try this at home, it’s worth noting that kapok bark is added to some recipes for the famed spiritual hallucinogenic brew known as ayahuasca. Additionally, it’s been employed in herbal medicine as an aphrodisiac and headache cure. As headaches are often related to blocked or challenged spiritual perception, and our ability to connect with our sexuality is all about opening up and allowing ourselves to feel, these qualities also point to the kapok’s ability to sensitize us to new ways of seeing, perceiving, and being in our bodies. This enhances our magical abilities and brings all sorts of benefits to our everyday life.
Spend time in quiet contemplation with a kapok tree to expand your awareness and enhance your spiritual perception.
In alternative spirituality and holistic healing circles, a lot of attention is given to the Goddess and the Divine Feminine, in large part because for some time now our culture has been glorifying masculine energy to the point of imbalance. But in truth, neither polarity is inherently better than the other, and it’s most ideal when the two energies are in dynamic equilibrium by continually complementing and balancing each other.
One of the most healing aspects of kapok’s energy is his exceptionally balancing expression of Divine Masculine energy. With his expansive and visible roots, he is anchoring while simultaneously providing strong structure and taciturn spiritual sustenance. (In other words, he’s the strong, silent type.)
To embody your own masculine energy in a most balanced and healthy way, or to open yourself up to attracting a masculine partner with a very high level of integrity, spend time in quiet contemplation with a kapok tree. Relax and allow yourself to absorb and mirror his strong and silent vibration.
Interestingly, in many of his native lands, the kapok is associated with both divinity and unfriendly spirits who are believed to be hiding or trapped inside certain individual trees. However, the tree does not actually house unfriendly spirits, but rather provides a reflection of the willfully unclaimed and destructive aspects of a person encountering the tree. In other words, if one is out of integrity in any way—behaving greedily, for example, or concealing the truth from oneself or others—those unsavory traits will be reflected back to the perceiver by the tree. If one fails to recognize that what he perceives is an aspect of himself, he will project that aspect upon the tree, and possibly believe that the tree is housing an undesirable spirit of some kind.
This magical property of the kapok tree can be very helpful for those who want to call upon their integrity and step into the role of hero. For example:
KAPOK INTEGRITY RITUAL AND HERO INITIATION
Visit a kapok tree and offer three slices of bread by placing them at the base of the tree. Relax and come into harmony with the vast, quiet energy of the tree. Know that any fears or challenging feelings that arise are actually windows into unhealed aspects of yourself. The kapok tree is simply acting as a mirror that will allow you to shine light into the dark places and bravely release what holds you back from serving the planet in the most helpful and honorable of ways. Relax and surrender to this natural spiritual and energetic process, releasing the need to understand what is happening with your linear, logical mind.