Symbolic of happiness, long life, prosperity and good fortune

Sacred to both Buddhists and Hindus as it is believed that it was a fig tree under which Buddha sat to gain enlightenment

Sacred fig, according to myth, has the figure of Brahma as its roots, its trunk as Vishnu, and its leaves as Maha Shiva

The Jains Hindus and Buddhists regard this tree as their ‘Tree of Life’

The sacred Fig is also called Aswattha in Sanskrit, peepul, bodhi and Bo tree in Hundi and the Indian fig in English

The sacred fig is mentioned in the Mahabharata.

If an elderly family member passes away, offerings are given to the tree for 13 consecutive days

In Gita, the tree represents the universe

In India, the Muria peoples, the tree is a male symbol. They plant a Neem tree, symbolic of female with it so as they grow they become entwined and as one.  They then place stones in the form of a snake around its base to symbolise fertility.

In Rajasthan, this is reversed.  The Neem tree is male and the sacred fig female 

In kindling and fire starting in the religious ceremony of the ‘birth if Agni’ fig wood is used.

Apsaras, the female spirit of clouds and water is said to inhabit the sacred fig.  

A sacred fig is said to grow on the mythical island if Plaksha dvipa.

The gods are said to sit in their third heaven under a fig tree

A sacred fig planted in 228 BC is still alive today

The sacred fig is used Ayurvedic medicine with all parts of the tree being used, leaves, roots, sap bark and seeds

Egyptian legend has it that goddess Hathor emerges from a fig tree to welcome to heaven the newly arrived souls of those departed

In Kenya, the Kukuyu people make offerings to the tree in order to communicate with God.

In Greek mythology the branches of a fig tree saved Odysseus from drowning in the whirlpool

In Vietnam, a young boy named Cuoi was said to have been carried to the full moon by a magical fig tree

Fig trees have been around for 80 million years at least

The sacred fig has been used in medicine to aid healing from diabetes, asthma, epilepsy, gastric disorders, infections and skin rashes.

If a person waters this tree, goodwill is earned for themselves and future generations

The leaves are thought to kill all airborne virus bacteria around them as the wind rustles through their leaves so controlling infections.

Worshipped especially on Saturdays due to the goddess Lakshmi choosing this day to sit under the tree

The fruit of the neem is placed on a peepal leaf which symbolises the ‘shivalinga’  depiction of creation through sexual union and the two trees are in effect ‘married’.