Why the obsession with forests?
I’ve noticed that many pagans who consider themselves of an Earth-centric persuasion seem awfully hung up on forests. You only have to type “pagan fore” into Google before it starts giving you suggestions that start with “pagan forest.”
However, the forest is only one biome out of several: desert, tundra, grassland, and aquatic. (Some people divide the biomes a bit further, but this is good enough for the purpose of this post.) Typing out “pagan desert” or “pagan (any biome that isn’t forest)” doesn’t give any suggestions.
If one is to really honor the Earth and nature, shouldn’t all of it be honored? The sagebrush steppe (my native habitat) is no less natural and full of wonder than the forest. It has flowers, shrubs, birds, and even bunnies.
I see people extolling the wonder of the mountains and forests all the time (particularly in pagan music), but the rest of Earth’s majesty gets the short end of the stick. Just do a search for “pagan art” and see how much of it depicts slender, white, conventionally-attractive women in or near a forest. It’s almost as if there’s a subconscious idea that the only place nature truly exists is in a forest.
So what’s the dealio? Do Earth/nature oriented witches just not happen in places there aren’t forests, or are we learning to romanticize forests and ignore the wonder and magic of the other biomes?