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Holly             Tinne (Challenge)

Tinne corresponds to the letter T in the Ogam alphabet and is associated with the Hawthorn tree. This symbol represents courage, balance and power.

Tinne pronounced: TINg-yuh

Status: Shrub

Element: Fire

Gender: Masculine

Celtic Eighth Month: June

Powers: Holly is tough and best used in a fight.


Keywords: The Holly King, best in the fight, energy, guidance for future problems, balance, strong in arguments, justice, challenge, directness, boldness, power, emotional & spiritual tests


Deities associated with Holly: Tannus, Taranis, Thor (the thunder gods), Freya, Lugh.


Interesting Spiritual Information: Holly is associated with the death and rebirth symbolism of winter in both Pagan and Christian lore. It is important to the Winter Solstice. The Holly is male and symbolizes paternity and fatherhood. It is a potent life symbol and gives you balance and a directness for your focus. It also is associated with protection magic, prophesy, healing, animals, sex, invulnerability, watchfulness, good luck, holiness and consecration.


Ogam Healing: Absence of love; Balance of focus; Boldness; Challenges; Courage; Directing focus; Emotional problems; Emotional tests; Fatherhood; Generosity of spirit; Good luck; Guidance for future problems;  Jealousy

Male sexuality; Negative energy; Protection; Hatred towards others; Justice Male energy; Negative thoughts/energy; Spiritual tests; Spite towards others; Strong in arguments; Dizziness; Epilepsy; Aid in high blood pressure; Bronchitis and tuberculosis; Colds/ flu; External sores and itching; Fevers; Heart…


More Medical information and in-depth healing suggestions can be found in my book The Beginners Book of Ogam Tree Healing, or by attending one of my workshops.


Folklore: In Celtic mythology, the Holly King ruled over half the year from summer to the winter solstice, then the Oak King would defeat the Holly King and rule through until the summer solstice again. There are many poems and songs dedicated to this event. The Holly and Oak kings were seen as two aspects of the Nature God and were sometimes integrated into plays performed by the Mummers’ around Yuletide. The Holly King was depicted as a giant man covered in holly leaves and branches, his club was made from a whole holly bush and he has been seen by some to be the precursor of the Green man.

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