The forest in sacred geography is close to the mountains in a definite sense. The symbolism of the tree is related to the symbolism of the mountain (both the former and the latter designate the world axis). Therefore in tellurocracies the forest also plays a peripheral function — it, too, is the “place of the priests” (druids, magi, hermits), but also at the same time the “place of demons”, i.e. archaic residuals from a vanished past. Neither the forest zone can be the centre of the overland empire.
The tundra represents the northern analogue to the steppe and the desert, although the cold climate makes it much less significant from a geopolitical point of view. This “periphericity” reaches its apogee with ices, which, similarly to the mountains, are deeply archaic zones. It is indicative that the eskimo shamanic tradition implies departing alone among ices, where to the future shaman the world beyond is opened out. Thus, ices are a hieratic zone, the threshold of a different world.