This topic is really very dear to my heart. I came to Tarot through my own spiritual awakening – I had myself received the deep healing and expansion of perspective that the Tarot helped provide. This brings up something I feel is critical for a truly effective and meaningful Tarot praxis: practitioners of Tarot greatly enrich their own relationship with their healing tool when they experience it first-hand, as “seekers”.
Tarot helped me to understand my own spiritual awakening. My work with the Tarot is an upshot of my own healing process. My work is about helping people to understand, with Tarot, the very confusing and challenging periods of spiritual awakening and initiation into lightwork.
The archetypes of the Tarot speak to universal experiences of spiritual awakening; experiences that are common amongst the collective of lightworkers. From my experience, what lightworkers and those undergoing a spiritual awakening really need for healing is context.
What follows is a short guide. With just a few of the archetypes which spoke most to me in the moment, and which speak to my clients time and time again, I explore how they can help us in coming to terms with the process of individual awakening and spiritual expansion.
The New Territory of Awakening: The Fool
What is spiritual awakening? It is, I believe, at its core, starting out on a new journey of Self. This is why the Fool has so much to offer in terms of helping us to understand awakening as a universal human experience. It is the 0, the incubator, the womb. When we undergo a spiritual awakening we are incubating into a new way of being. We are birthing a new Self. We become the Fool when, in our awakening process, we leave familiar experience behind. We become the Fool when we increasingly relinquish the need to know at the level of the mental body, and we are led by our inner spirit and our connection to Source in our decision-making process. We become the Fool when we make a choice to step into our lightwork –when something absolutely compelling within us is magnetizing us to a new path.
The Fool helps us to understand the compelling inner call of our soul. We become the Fool when we arrive at that tipping point – when we can no longer ignore that immensely powerful inner pull. We can no longer afford not to take the risk of stepping fully and unequivocally into our lightwork. What I really want to emphasize here is that this choice is not necessarily made at the level of the conscious mind. We may not truly consciously understand that we have made a soul level choice. What often happens is that the dissolution of external structures in our lives reflects back to us that we are the ones moving into new territory. Our partners leave, our careers crumble, but these are reflections of the fact that energetically we are the ones moving into new experience (though it feels horribly like we’re standing on the platform watching the train speed away). From that perspective, the Fool holds such an incredible irony: we are, very often, fools to our own awakening. We do not truly comprehend the frequencial shifts occurring within us until we witness the shifts in our external realities. The Fool helps us to place these shifts in context so that we can now begin to work with our mental and emotional bodies, and lovingly assist them to catch up with our soul-led, Fool-ish expansion into a new experience of Self. Ah, the explanatory power of the Tarot.
The Fool is also a reminder to those undergoing an initiation into their lightwork that this process invariably involves coming to terms with the implications of marching to the beat of their own drums. The Pleiadians remind us that this is one of the most challenging aspects of awakening. From that perspective, the Fool is the lightworker’s departure from societal and familial programming. The Fool is the independence of mind to follow the dictates of one’s indwelling spirit.
Moving Toward a Destination We Are Guided To Choose: Two of Swords & The Chariot
The Two of Swords provides a platform to assess how, as spiritually evolving and awakening beings, we treat with the social programming, external opinions and influences which have the capacity to leave us polarized and in a state of inner conflict. We can leave ourselves open to inner conflict, polarization and indecision because we accommodate perspectives into our energetic space that are at variance with the impulses of our inner guidance. However, the Two of swords also provides a solution – we may choose to shut out external interference where appropriate, to be able to hear our own intuition.
The Chariot takes this one step further. The Chariot is our enlightened choice to use our intuition to move toward a destination we are guided to choose, rather than let the opinions of others sway us in polarizing directions. The Chariot looms larger than the city. This archetype is the ego in service to the lightwork of the soul. It is the completely self-directed use of one’s will in conjunction with one’s deep inner guidance. The Chariot is the lightworker asserting himself or herself; it is the lightworker’s choice to not follow the paths that others have laid out for him or her. “No, I will not succumb to pressure from my parents to pursue a ph.D. My passion is interior decorating, and I intend to follow that.” That’s the Chariot speaking. When lightworkers make a choice to be at the helm of their lives, to be the captain of their ships and directed unequivocally by their intuition, they channel the energy of the Chariot. Similarly, if one needs to activate this energy within oneself, conscious incorporation of this archetype into some sort of meditative practice could be highly beneficial.
Conduits & Conscious Co-creation: The Magician
When we step into the awareness that as lightworkers we are conduits for frequency, we begin to access an aspect of the Magician archetype. When we awaken to ourselves as receivers of higher vibrational frequency which we anchor into physical reality we step into our Magician roles. All lightworkers are Magicians anchoring more of their multidimensional selves. We become Magicians when, as spiritually awakening and evolving beings, we consciously co-create with our higher levels to manifest. When we take charge of our consciousness and purposefully direct it, we become Magicians. The Magician represents the lightworker’s conscious choice to step powerfully into his or her role as Creator, deciding what he or she is available for at the level of his or her consciousness. Thus, to be a Magician is to reject the idea of oneself as “victim”. To be in victim consciousness is to eschew one’s inner Magician.
Stepping into our Magician roles is the crux of lightwork. When we intend to work more closely with our Higher Minds, the Magician is an archetype that we can incorporate into our meditative practice. When we seek to understand the challenges that crop up in our external experience, we can turn to the Magician who reminds us that these circumstances are our co-creations. The Magician does not remind us of this with judgement, but urges us to take the energetic reigns of our lives. As Magicians, we can speak directly with our Higher Self and soul presence to gain perspective on how we are using our creative energy. Whenever we work with the Tarot as a tool, we work between the worlds as Magicians in direct contact with guidance from our higher-dimensional levels.
Transition: Five of Cups & Six of Swords; Eight of Cups & Strength
In the wake of our Death and Tower experiences which mirror our changing frequencies vis-à-vis the external structures in our lives, we must pick up the pieces and move forward. The 5 of Cups reflects our grief and regret in relation to the losses; the 6 of Swords reminds us gently that we have to move on. With the 6 of Swords, we know we are moving towards more coherent states, but it is of course, a process, and where we are headed remains an obscure destination in our minds. Our heart is heavy, but we are able to begin the process of transition.
The 8 of Cups depicts that process I like to call “emotional unhooking.” It is an archetype which speaks directly to the emotional body’s relationship with transition. The figure in the 8 of Cups leaves emotionally compelling aspects of his experience behind. We do not know where the figure is going, but we are aware that he is in the process of departing from something which would have had a strong magnetic pull for him. A conscious choice to disinvest emotionally from states and situations we have in truth outgrown is often extremely difficult. A mental recognition of the need to disinvest emotionally from situations and people is altogether different from the process of emotional divestment itself.
Lightworkers undergoing changes in their intimate relationships can attest to how incredibly emotionally difficult it is to leave behind familiar feelings in order to step into higher levels of their lightwork. This process of transition involves recalling the creative energy of the emotional body, and unhooking sacral chakra emotional attachments. The tremendous inner fortitude that the conscious transition depicted in the 8 of Cups requires puts us squarely into the energy of the Strength key of the Major Arcana. Lovingly taking our emotional bodies in hand, just as the figure in the Strength key soothes the lion, requires close connection with our multidimensional greater being in order to perceive the spiritual grace and benevolence inherent in our transition.
Relationship Changes: The Lovers
Intimate romantic relationships are in and of themselves crucial catalysts for spiritual awakening and initiation. The purging of karmic energy and the purging of the energy of judgement through relationships allows lightworkers to move into more advanced levels of their soul work. As the magnetic point of attraction shifts between people in intimate relationships due to vibrational differences or disparities, these relationships often dissolve. The deeply painful experiences of relationship dissolution often confront lightworkers with the spiritual necessity of giving themselves the love they seek from another. Thus, while the Lovers key suggests relationship with other people, on a higher level it points to individual self-love and integration as the pathway for magnetizing mature, balanced, loving and soulful partnerships.
Facing Uncertainty: The Moon
In the half-light of the Moon, we are unsure of what we see. For those undergoing a spiritual awakening, the Moon is the necessity of navigating periods of uncertainty. I like to think of ‘Moon phases’ as rites of passage for spiritually awakening people. When we are uncertain of the future, when we question whether we are “on the right path”, and when our next steps are not immediately clear, we dance with the Moon. Our ‘Moon phases’ are not ‘problems’ to be solved; they are rites of passage. When we can release the need for certainty we allow this archetype to teach us. Certainty may not be what we need to go forward. Certainty may not be in our highest evolutionary interest. The Moon lures us into the recognition that what we really have at our disposal during these times of uncertainty is the compass of our inner guidance and intuition. She presents us with the only truly viable course of action: reaching for the wisdom of our inner selves.
Connecting to Your Joy: The Sun
When we connect to our natural, authentic, joyful, vibrant and spontaneous selves, we connect with the energy of the Sun. This archetype is often overlooked within discourses of spiritual awakening and lightwork, and also within intuitive one-on-one client work, in favour of focusing on archetypes which represent the processes associated with moving through our “dark night of the soul.” The Sun represents lightwork at its highest, most universal level: connecting to our joy to disassemble lower vibrational consciousness. When we consistently make choices to connect moment by moment to the things that create coherent states of joy, we contribute this frequency to the universal collective.
How has the Tarot helped you to understand your own spiritual transition? In what other ways can it assist us in coming to terms with our awakening and lightwork? If you are a Tarot practitioner, how can you use your own spiritual awakening and your connection to your tool to assist your clients with their own spiritual initiations?
Over to you.
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