Trees and Rivers to the Sky

trees rivers to the sky
November 5, 2020

Shambhavi shares about her experiences of trees as rivers and rivers in the U.S. and India as recyclers of karma. A podcast from Satsang with Shambhavi

Podcast First Words

In a satsang with Anandamayi Ma, a fellow asked Ma a question about finding the mahatma that was sitting under a tree. And Ma asked him, “What is a tree?” And then she went on to say that the tree is the mahatma. The tree is the mahasiddha. And she said, “You are also the tree.”

What that reminded me of was—many years ago—I got a message where some voice of wisdom said to me, “Trees are rivers to the sky.” And that really just changed my experience of trees forever.

So I was thinking about a person being a tree. And how in order to grow and to touch the vastness of the sky, we have to draw nourishment from the earth. Then that nourishment from the earth has to be transmuted into finer substances. We have to give leaves so that our leaves can turn and receive the light of the sun, which is a living symbol of prakasha, the light of awareness. That’s what I was thinking during the satsang.

This is just such a useful image to think of. In order to self realize, we have to be connected to the earth. And we have to know how to draw nourishment.

The tree spans all the realms, just like Ganesha spans the earthly, the human, and the godly realms with his big body. He has at least one foot touching the ground at all times. And then he has this big celestial head.

We’re the same when we want to self realize. We have to be in touch with all the different manifestations of god. We can’t just ignore the earthly parts.


Satsang with Shambhavi is a weekly podcast about spirituality, love, death, devotion and waking up while living in a messy world.