We are stardust,
We are golden,
And we’ve got to get ourselves
Back to the garden.
— Joni Mitchell, Woodstock
We receive another nine this week. The nines of the Tarot are the cards of completion, with the tens being an overflowing of the energy of the suit. So this week, we move from the dark visions given by the Swords, to the lush plentifulness of Pentacles.
All of the nines speak to us in aloneness, seen most obviously in the Major Arcana nine, the Hermit. The Minors’ nines are a pause, as we fully absorb the energies of that suit. And the Pentacles are the energies of the material world: wealth, health, the land, and abundance of all kinds.
Here we see a strong, self-reliant woman of comfortable means. She stands tall under a sunny yellow sky, her garden lush with grapes. The flowers on her dress are reminiscent of the symbol for Venus, reminding us of the Empress.
This is a woman who surrounds herself with life, fruitfulness and the beauty she creates and chooses. She is graceful in her independence, and finds happiness in herself.
She holds a hooded falcon – the wild spirit who obeys the will of its mistress. This is a reminder that although she is surrounded by cultivation and refinement, and is certainly a gentlewoman, she can also tap into her fierce, predatory instincts when needed. For now, though, restraint and peace dominate the scene.
While fear and bad economic news continue to roil across our globe, this card is a reminder that most people reading this are staggeringly wealthy, compared to the majority of the world’s population. And we take for granted comforts that would astonish kings and emperors of old.
Now is the time for reflection on what safety, wealth, and security truly mean to us in our own private lives. Many of the structures of wealth and security upon which we have relied are proving to have been artificial and false. But even as they crumble, we stand here in our garden, surrounded by fruitfulness, beauty, and Nature’s bounty.
Our real safe haven is the natural world, which was never our enemy, and from which we cannot really be separated. Healing our history of domination and exploitation, we are invited to remember how to honor and cooperate with that which supports and nurtures us.
What is good for us? What do we really need, not only to survive, but to thrive? How do we now create a sustainable, lush, truly happy civilization?
What treasures surround you? What feeds and nurtures you, body and soul? Now is the time to tend to the things that matter most, and, just as importantly, to appreciate all that is given. For by taking stock of what we have with deepest gratitude, we will discover that we have all that we need.
And so much more.