Persistence vs. Arrogance

Let’s take a brief look at the 3 of Wands from the Tarot deck. This card, when well placed, indicates persistence and a position of established strength. When ill placed, it shows conceit or arrogance. At least these are the usual interpretations.

Now, take a look at the card3W itself. The man stands looking out at the land and sea from high ground as if he’s master of all he surveys. He has one wand to each side of him and the third protecting his back. It gives the sense of an unassailable position. In Tarot, the suit of Wands is associated with the Qabalistic world of Atziluth, the world of paradigms and archetypes – the loftiest of ideas. The number three is associated with the sphere of Binah on the Tree of Life. This sphere is linked with manifestation energy, and is creative in the most practical sense. So, the card speaks of making the highest ideals manifest or actualized.

Take government as an example. Governments have no greater responsibility than the care of the people governed, especially in the case of representative governments like ours (at least that’s the theory). The government’s established strength is given to it by those who elected their representatives.

Given that, look at the card again. The person has a grip on one of the wands. Now, think about our system of government. It has three (how convenient!) branches which we should all remember from civics class: executive, legislative, and judicial. Which one of these do we have the best hold on? I think it’s the legislative, the one most answerable directly to the people on a day-to-day basis. That’s right, it’s us, the electorate, that has the established strength if we decide to exercise it.

Takeaway point: Only through our persistence can we overcome the arrogance of those in power. Make a bit of noise; let your voice be heard.

[Sorry I got preachy today, but I weary of watching those on Capitol Hill engage in “wand measuring” contests, if you catch my drift.]

Everyone’s Mother

Since it’s Mother’s day, this is an ideal time to talk about the Tarot card that is closely associated with the archetype of motherhood. In the B.O.T.A. system of Tarot interpretation (the system that I use), this card is The Empress, card III of the Major Arcana. She is also associated with the throat chakra, which is the refined center of creativity, and the color green. The card is pictured below.

Empress(I colored the card myself because B.O.T.A. requires that each student color his/her own deck, in accordance with precise instructions, in order to impress the symbols more fully into the subconscious. Yes, even though I have no drawing talent, I can stay pretty well within the lines when I have to.)

She is in a place of fertility, with Nature blossoming out, nourished by the life-giving water that originated in the High Priestess card (I’m saving that card for another post). An additional clue to the relationship between this card and the High Priestess is the crescent Moon, and these two cards are representatives of the Great Feminine in the Tarot.

The Empress is pregnant, a promise of current efforts bearing fruit in the future. On the Tree of Life, or TOL, The Empress forms the path that joins the spheres of Chokmah (Wisdom) and Binah (Understanding), the archetypal Father and Mother spheres, respectively. She carries within her the fruit of their union. (A brief, related article I wrote entitled The Roles of Knowledge, Wisdom, and Understanding in Health is here.)

As she is associated with the planet Venus, she stands for beauty and desire (The TOL sphere named Netzach, which means Desire, is the Tree’s sphere of Venus). Through the proper channeling of the creative force generated in the Sacral chakra (the red triangle in the picture), we can bring into highest expression that which we desire. If the translation of this force is not successful, or gets sidetracked by baser urges, an unsatisfactory or transiently satisfying outcome results.

To contact your inner Empress, meditate on the card for a few moments, letting all the symbols impress themselves into your consciousness. Then close your eyes and let pure green light permeate your being. In this state, you can communicate your highest desires to Universal Mind. Be sure to record any impressions or messages that you receive during this time of contemplation. This is a good habit to cultivate.

The Empress is in our psyches to assist us with the realization of true spiritual beauty. Her planet, Venus, rules Taurus and Libra, the signs of material manifestation and relationships, respectively. Beauty in our surroundings and in our dealings with others. No better way to see our desires fulfilled.