This week I invite seven foremothers in my blog to celebrate Sukkot. You can read more about this festival and the tradition of inviting foremothers in the entry of October 6 st.
Today I invite Abigail in my sukkah-blog. You see her in a painting by Rubens. Abigail is associated with the virtue truthfulness and with the sephira Hod on the Tree of Life. Hod is the sphere of communication on the Tree.
How I respect this woman! If someone deserves it to get attention and honour, than it is her. In a minute I’ll tell her story, first the question and the card I have pulled as response to that.
I asked the question: What can you teach me today, Abigail?
The card I have pulled is Four of Cups from the Tarot of the 78 Doors. Depicted is a man with a fat stomach eating chips for the television. It looks if he is very satisfied with himself, would not budge for no-one, does not reflect on his behaviour at all.
The man on the card is as Nabal in the story of Abigail. Abigail is the wife of Nabal, a churlish, evil man. Nabal does not want to give a reward to David, who protected his sheep. David –who will become king in the future- sets out to kill Nabal, and with him his whole family. Abigail, who knows her husband will never give in -he shall never budge- goes to David without her husband knowing, and gives him his presents. Saving him for shedding blood is the excuse she uses: “Take my presents, killing is not good really if you want to become a king”, she says, clever and wise, while she throws herself to his feet and explains who she is. David accepts her presents, and goes home, without killing her family. A clever communicator Abigail is! She earns our respect.
Although I do find Abigail clever and wise, the card that I have pulled, hurts me. I recall before my eyes my eyes many, many women (whom often are not economical independent), using all their communicative skills to keep their relationships in order, while the men do not do anything about their behaviour, not wanting to budge one inch. This is what moved me in this card, in relation to the story of Abigail.
Abigail teaches me something more than that. Just like yesterday, there is something growing at that card. It is a plant, sitting there between me and that chips-eating man. The meaning of the Four of Cups is the need of looking inward. Abigail, clever communicator as she is, tells me to back off, to give people the opportunity to look inward, but to no more than that, it is not to me not to do their work for them. This plant prevents me from coming too close and doing that.
Photo: on the left is a poster with forefathers.