The Lady and the Lion

I thought that I’d talk a bit today about the Tarot card Strength (Major arcanum VIII). The card 8 - Strengthdepicts a woman holding a lion’s mouth open. A picture of the card is at right.

Astrologically, this card is associated with the sign of Leo (the lion). This sign rules the heart and spine.

The lion is an obvious reference to Leo. But what about the woman, the roses around the lion’s neck, and the infinity sign? On Tarot cards, roses tend to symbolize the senses. Also, the lion symbolizes not only the sign of Leo, but also the subconscious (“animal”) mind. Here, the woman (the conscious mind) controls the subconscious, which reacts through the senses. One of the messages here is that the conscious mind needs to direct the subconscious. The messages we give to the subconscious determine how we interpret or sense the world.

It should be mentioned here that each of us has all of the astrological signs in us. This means that we all have an inner Leo (our creative self). Using the Strength card in meditation is a great way to contact those creative parts of ourselves and to reinforce our heart energy.

It is important to remember that the Tarot is a map of the psyche, and is intended to lead us down the road of spiritual development. But to go down that road, ya gotta have heart.