Baobab Tree Uses
Tree Healing Therapy
Botanical name Andasonia spp. / Family Malvaceae / Bombacoideae The baobab, which may live to 1 ,OOO-plus years, is native to Madagascar. It behaves like a succulent and store masses of water inside its swollen, thick corky trunk to overcome drought conditions, and throws up branches that look like a root system, hence its other name of 'upside-down tree'. The enormous white flowers have only a single day of life. The large, hairy fruits resemble rats hanging by their tails, hence the nickname 'dead rat tree'.
History, mystery and spiritual healing Baobab fruit from West Africa was identified in the Book of Roads and Kingdoms by al-Bakri (1068), and the tree from the writings of early 14th- and 15th-century travellers such as Ibn Battuta, Leo Africanus and Portuguese navigators. The baobab is capable of providing shelter, food and water for animals and humans, and relief from sickness. Cut down an entire tree and it will simply re-sprout from the root. When a baobab tree dies, it collapses into a heap of soggy, fibrous pulp; stories abound of how quickly decomposing trees burn up through 'spontaneous combustion'.
African myths and legends tell of how God planted baobabs upside-down; of how a disgruntled hyena was given the tree and planted it upside-down; of how the Bushmen's creator god took a dislike to it and threw it over the wall of paradise, but it continued to grow. Many Africans believe that spirits that dwell in the tree have to be placated. The griots or poets of West Africa are denied burial in the earth and are suspended in hollow baobabs, while in southern Africa the spirits of tribal chiefs live in the tree. African superstitions say that anyone who dares to pick a baobab flower will be eaten by a lion, but if they drink water in which the seeds have been soaked, they will be safe from crocodile attack.
Baobab means 'Father, sources'.
Planet Earth, Sun
Deity God the Creator, Thora (Kaang)
Stone Tree agate (the stone of plenitude), sunstone (sun and protection)
Animal Hyena (wisdom and cleverness)
Virtue Courage, righteousness
Association Omnipotence, safe haven