March 11th, 2007

angry cat from lidi

Saturday, Second Week of Lent, John 7:1-13, Risks

Each day in Lent I read a passage from the Bible. Tonight I have read John 7:1-13. In this story Jesus goes in secret to the Feast of Boots, Sukkot. During the feast many people in town were making their mind up about him. There was much discussion if he was a good man or not; a Five of Wands situation, but probably more grim as that.

I have asked a simple question to the tarot about this passage: “What is the relevance of this story for me?”

The Ace of Cups from the Fantastic Menagerie Tarot from baba_studiowas the card that I have pulled as an answer to this question. It is the second time this week that I have pulled the Ace of Cups. The first time it was an answer to what calls me to life (Ace of Teacups from the Tarot of Jane Austen). Opening up my heart is what calls me to life.


The book alongside the Fantastic Menagerie cards suggests that this card can come up “when we are entirely ourselves and true to our natures.” The Ace of Cups signifies also a new beginning of love; an opened heart. Here on the card a little birdie looks happy at the world he is just born in. The cliff on the card and the place where the egg is positioned, nearly at the end, reminds me of the Fool, coming from another world and welcoming life. This is grim for me now, because it is my fear that our little birdie will fall from the cliff, if he – curiously of the world he is born into – bends forward. 


So far, so good, but what is this Ace of Cups saying about the story? People talk and argue about Jesus on the feast, for they have heard of him and he is new, just like the little birdie, and he performs miracles. Although he goes into town in secret, throughout this gospel Jesus shows his true nature. I read this story with the foreboding of what will happen later to him: his arrest, his suffering and crucifixion. I see the stage being set for him here, just as I see the little bird collapsing in the water if he sticks his head out too far.

The first time this week the Ace of Cups called me to life, now it shows my fear to answer that call. The relevance of the story for me is the fear of opening myself, showing my true nature, for the price I will pay is falling from the cliff. Taking that risk is dangerous.   

Jesus did though.

Another question to be asked about this story is: “What does Jesus mean to you?”
Madonna del "Magnificat" (detail)

Sunday, Third Week of Lent, Mark 5:1-20, Healing of a Madman


Today I have read a story in which Jesus heals man with an “unclean spirit”, a madman so to say (Mark 5:1-20). This man was really, really wild, no chain could bind hem. “Nobody had the strength to tame him,” the story tells. In tarot-terms the lion from the Strength-card was running wild through his life and through his mind, making him berserk. Jesus commanded the spirit to go away from the man and to enter into a cattle of pigs. That happened and the man was healed and sane again.

My question to the tarot about this story is: “What is at the moment untamed in my life and runs wild, as it were going ‘berserk’?”

I have used the Motherpeace Tarot and and the Priestess of Wands came up. 


A naked and courageous woman is striding purposefully to her goal, accompanied by a lion, which was quite a surprise to me, just after having compared the ‘unclean spirit’ with the lion on the Strength-card. It is a different lion than on the Strength-card. The tarot corrects me here in my one- sided view on the role of the lion on the card, and presents me with another view. On this card the lion is tamed and kept under control, so it can be used as ‘strength’, and assertiveness. The priestess uses it as an ally.

The priestess on the card is me. She frightens me a bit, by the powerful way she walks towards me. This card reflects on something what I have decided, but the result of it is yet to come and I feel ambivalent and uncertain about it. So here I go, courageous. But on the inside I am afraid; I am frightened by my own courageous decision.

The fear is what is running wild, the ‘evil spirit’ over which I have no control. The priestess has tamed her lion and uses it as an ally, and Jesus has sent the evil spirits away. Here is a task for me. Hmm.