I believe the land is often not what one thinks it is. There are so many layers to its essence and ancestry. If you think of how much it has endured and has seen in its life and how much it has changed. We are only a drop-like participants in the ocean of its life and I suspect there are many things we don’t know about. Mysteries are buried in soil, trees, moss, animals, plants and all Eco systems and bio diversity. We are all part of that but how well do we know the forest really?
Are we armed with knowledge of it all, its creatures, inhabitants, etc. energies that run through one piece of land or another? Therefore I think there should be a degree of caution when entering terrain unfamiliar especially for the first time.
While on a workshop someone once mentioned offerings to the woods and not
taking anything out of it. Often this is not taken seriously and something I believe I have to change too due to recent experiences in a forest.
Various creatures appreciate different offerings. This is a sign of respect, I believe, just like it would be with a god or a goddess or ancestors. Think of ceremonial feastings and even sacrifices. Donations and bowing. I recently seem to have forgotten to bow when going in and out of a forest, and the feeling is one of being unsettled as a result. I am, however, careful about removing things from the forest. That will require a different kind of ritual and offering all together. Just because you fancy something doesn’t mean you are free to take it especially if you think of a forest or a land as sentient being and practice animism. There are consequences.
Different places, landscapes, forests would have a different feel. From my experience of purposefully seeking out various forests and working with them I can say they are very different and one will know it and feel it energetically. Some places are very unwelcoming and others are soft and open. There are reasons for those energies being around and sometimes we just don’t know what’s gone on there before on the land, in the energy field. Sometimes several visits are required to figure things out and before trust and openness can be created. You can link various places with the way you feel. People get lost easier in some places than others, e.g. It depends whether water is present and what trees grow where. So many factors to consider and I always recommend listening to yourself before entering a place in nature.
Offerings and introductions are important and should be meaningful. I am fairly new to this practice and something that has recently come up and caught my need and curiosity for further learning. I will be using my intuition firstly to tap into what might be needed by forest beings, trees, Gods or Goddesses I come across or work with. I suspect I am most likely be using something I make myself with care and attention or something I grow myself if it is flowers or herbs. It should be from a good natural sustainable source. Offerings should be meaningful and something that shows devotion, intention, dedication and respect. It feels very important and something I will pay close attention to in my practice.