Tree Beings, by Raymond Huber and Sandra Severgnini
Forward by Dr. Jane Goodall
This book is a review copy from the publisher. I chose this book to review because of the title. Right away, I identified with the concept of ‘Tree Beings’. This is a book about the beings that live within the trees, the ecosystem of life within forests, people who have cared enough to become champions of trees, and about the beings of trees themselves. It’s a delightful, yet educational, book that adults will enjoy sharing with children.
‘We are like a leaf believing itself to be separate from the tree on which it grows.’ – John SeedTree Beings, p. 77
Just imagine a leaf trying to destroy the tree it grows upon! If humans are to survive we must look after the natural world.”
Part of a Larger Whole
The book is based on sound science and isn’t woo-woo at all. But my own woo-woo-ness has definitely influenced why I enjoyed it so much.
My philosophy is that the entire Universe is made up of systems. We are not separated, somehow isolated from the rest of the Universe. Rather, humans, like everything else, are part of larger and larger systems, and smaller and smaller systems – the All (what I consider to be the body of God). These overlapping, interacting systems from infinitesimally small to inconceivably large, interact in sometimes incomprehensible ways with everything around it. Nearby and personal, our thoughts and actions are influencing systems apart from our immediate space like ripples in a pond.
We may be a unique species in that we are self-aware, but that’s not certain. Some of us are aware that we comprehend very little of all that is – of all that is seen and unseen, all that we know and have yet to know. All that we may never know. We humans are not a separate creation apart from all else.
And therefore, the concept of Tree Beings, and our obligation as stewards of the earth to care about trees is one that resonates with me.
Where to find Tree Beings?
At Amazon: https://amzn.to/376jmw9 [ad]
(As an affiliate, if you purchase via this link, I’ll make a small commission, but it doesn’t affect your price.)
Directly from Exisle Publishing: https://exislepublishing.com/product/tree-beings/
People Who Care about Trees
I consider all trees to be ‘beings’. My husband and I feel that we are stewards to the trees that live here on our 160 acres of Wild Ozark. Those of you who follow my blog and Instagram feed will know there’s a tree here near and dear to my heart named Gloria.
I love living in the presence of a large and unbroken forest. That doesn’t mean we don’t cut or remove trees, but it does mean we don’t make those choices lightly.
At first, I didn’t realize this was a children’s book, and that the ‘beings’ referred to in the title is mostly about the special people in the world who love trees. But honestly, it’s really good reading for anyone of any age. We can never get too old to care about the trees. We can never get too old to take even what seems to us to be small measures to advocate for them. Simply reading it either alone, or with a child, or gifting this book to someone is one such small measure with impact.
Between the pages of Tree Beings
The content is broken into sections called ‘Big Ideas’ and there are 4 of them. It’s worth recreating the table of contents here because it’ll give you an excellent idea of how many valuable ideas are presented in this beautifully illustrated book.
Big Idea 1:
Life in the trees
• Living up a tree: Julia Butterfly Hill
• Green skin of the Earth: How trees give life
• Living in the jungle: Dr. Jane Goodall
• World record trees
Big Idea 2:
Trees can save us
• Mother of the trees: Professor Wangari Maathai
• Powered by trees: Richard St. Barbe Baker
• Plant a tree: Save the planet
• Trilion tree kid: Felinx Finkbeiner
• The forest maker: Tony Rinaudo
Big Idea 3:
Trees are like beings
• Green beings of the Earth
• Voice of the trees: Professor Suzanne Simard
• Make frineds with a tree
• The tree climber: Professor Nalini Nadkarni
• Spirit of the forest: Trees in human culture
Big Idea 4:
Trees need our help
• Saving the oldest forest: John Seed
• Green warriors of the Earth: The toughest trees
• Letter from a tree: Dean Baigent-Mercer
• Chipko! The first tree-huggers
• What can you do?
• Glossary: Science words explained
• Puzzles & mazes
An Important Message, A Rally Cry for Tree Beings
I enjoyed reading about all of the special people in the world who have made meaningful contributions to conservation and education about trees. Spreading the word about how important the forests are. It’s important that children know about others who have become champions to the Tree Beings across the planet. These champions are larger than life, but very real people. They’re inspirations that can serve to awaken everyone to the role humans have in the future of trees everywhere.