After a long way through discoveries, mistakes and changes, we left our Fool (ourselves) midway through the cycle. I don’t think everyone glides through all the stages that the Major Arcana represent without going back and forth a few times, either. It is, after all, human life, and what if anything is more changing than that?? Change is life, I heard a while ago. Adapting to that successfully is our challenge. But let us move on…
XI The Justice – After the epiphany, we find ourselves at a new crossroad. Decisions need to be made and they have to be fair according to our own standards of morality. Responsibility for the past creeps up and we judge ourselves. The choice to be made is to either embrace what we’ve learned so far or ignore it and go back to committing the same mistakes.
XII The Hanged Man – Decisions bring about consequences and I see the Hanged Man as speaking mostly of perception and acceptance. You’ve changed your own view of the world, but the world hasn’t gone upside down with you. Resistance is futile and only brings about pain, acceptance on the other hand, and letting go of our rigidity, is what is needed now. The Hanged Man doesn’t look bothered by his situation, he cherishes the pause and reflects upon it as he sees fit.
XIII Death – Acceptance brings transformation and change. Sacrifices of the old imperfect self, into a greater one. The loss and mourning we all go through, in many, many situations of our lives, is key at this time. A picture I always present myself with, is that of a wound. It hurts, but if you ignore it, it festers and rots and kills. It needs to be dealt with, same with grief, needs recognition and cleansing. With Death, comes Rebirth. It’s not easy or fun, but it is an unavoidable transition for the best, ultimately. This is one of my favourite cards, specially in my Dreamscapes Tarot, in which it’s represented by a glorious Phoenix in mid-burn and song.
XIV Temperance – Having seen and been both extremes (life and death, material and spiritual, light and darkness), the time comes for us to cherish balance. Balance is not made of indifference or lack of extremes. We make our own balance with the best of both sides, at our own will.
XV The Devil – Scary as it sounds, the Devil is not about evil or bad things. It is about power and natural impulses. Our Fool realises material needs are still there. Not giving the proper space and outlet to these base, more feral impulses, gives us a sense of unease and despair. Acknowledging these doesn’t make us any less spiritual, though succumbing to them and becoming ‘enslaved’ is but our own choice.
XVI The Tower – The final barrier between our Inner Self and our Conscious self is a protective barrier that used to fill us with pride but now chokes our growing spirit. It takes a massive, drastic change for it to be moved. Like the Tower, our own walls are crumbled to pieces by things outside our control. Dramatic experiences shape us.They bring about freedom through uprooting old conventions. It hurts but the revelation would not happen without it.
XVII The Star – When all is falling to pieces, hope and faith hold us together. After everything seems broken, our own essence shines without fear and without limits. It’s our purest self of all giving and helping others, serene and magical, inside each and everyone of us. Honest and soothing in that natural confidence, puts us back in our feet for the last parts of the path.
XVIII The Moon – Together with the light of the star, we also have darkness deep down. We all do. The unconscious unleashed can be confusing and unsettling. Illusions of the imagination might be beautiful, but also dangerous as an escape. Knowing they are there is the way to make our way past.There’s no ‘defeating’ nor ‘ignoring’ them. The shadows remain with us, we just have to be aware of this.
XIX The Sun – A new day, a new start. We’re not the same fool that started the path, and yet the path seems to still lie ahead. We know greatness is within, so there’s no task too small or too big. We rejoice in everything we have and renewed energy surges through.
XX Judgement – Moving forward confidently we can finally call our shots and make informed decisions. We are aware of who we are and what we want to be and what we’re not and what we don’t want to be. We are congruent and fully ourselves throughout all aspects of our being. We forgive others and ourselves and come to terms with our pasts. There’s finally place for the real self, and no one but us are to make it.
XXI The World – This new integrated self is a conscious part of that wheel from way back. We are the world and the world is within us. The fulfilment of our accomplishments is endless, as is our connection to everything and everyone. This was always down the cliff where the journey first started, but the Fool needed to change himself to appreciate it. As endless as our understanding becomes, we also know there are some things we won’t ever grasp, and we restart this journey of self-renovation over and over.
I hope my reflections help you make your own. All comments are encouraged!
Blessings and Light