Inspiring Enchantment & Illumination with Tarot & Intuitive Guidance

Tarot Card of the Week: May 23-29, 2011

Nowhere can man find a quieter or more untroubled retreat than in his own soul.
~ Marcus Aurelius

Another four this week.  This time, we are visited by the Four of Swords. Fours in the Tarot are about stabilizing, grounding, and completion of a cycle.

In the Swords, which are so often about conflict and strife, the four gives its quieting influence. So this card indicates a time of retreat, rest, and renunciation of worldly pursuits, within a sacred space.

Tarot artist and scholar Robert Place tells us that there was a practice called “incubation,” in which ancient mystics would lie as if lifeless, imitating the state of death, sometimes for days, in order to induce visions and deep trance. Such practices are common in magical and spiritual initiations even to this day.

What soul-flight do you need right now?  Perhaps now is the time for such inward work.

In the Northern Hemisphere, the burgeoning Springtime now intensifies as Summer Solstice approaches, only a month away. As happily extroverted as this time may be, the rather unusual appearance of the Four of Swords indicates we would be better served by attending to that requires our introspection, solitude, and even a time out.

In this time of ever-escalating change and conflict, intensity is a the new normal. Super-charged, over-stimulated, caffeine- and adrenaline-amped, wired-in 24/7, we spend every waking minute immersed in a cacophony of opinion, infotainment, distraction and the commoditization of consciousness.

But if we never unplug or take a time out, how can we know how we really feel, or (more Swords-like), what we really think?

Do you need time for quiet reflection?  Solitary meditation and prayer offer solace and renewal.  This is a time to hear your own voice, see your own authentic visions.

The gift of the Four of Swords may come disguised as a delay.  Look for opportunities to exercise patience or even disengage from a situation, in order to let time pass.

What rest do you need right now? What quiet healing is available, if only you will turn away for a little while?

Allow yourself this gift of taking your time.  Sort out what only you alone can, offering yourself an untroubled retreat within your own soul.  Thus may you be the better prepared for more active days that surely lie ahead.

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  • May 23, 2011, 4:05 pm Arie

    Native americans have the “Vision Quest”.
    You sit beneath a tree in the forest without food for about 4 days.
    We have this here also, brought by someone who learned it in the US.
    Maybe I’ll try it some day. 🙂
    Lying down it Savasana yoga position and relaxing all the muscles can also induce such a state.

  • May 24, 2011, 10:55 am Maria

    I’ve been “incubating” for a while now, particularly in the last couple of weeks. I feel like when I go out, it’s too much for me — going to the store, noise, etc. All I seem to want to do is sit quietly, read, and think. The card seems to indicate that I’m doing exactly what I should be doing.

  • May 24, 2011, 8:32 pm jamye

    I with Maria. Continuing the incubation. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to rest and the beautiful view from my couch!

  • May 25, 2011, 11:08 am Carolyn Cushing

    Interesting. I have the Gaian 3 of Air for my card of the week (I’ve started a little practice of this on FB). In contrast to the 3 of Swords, the Gaian 3 of Air can offer you the advice to get out / write down the things that are worrying you; it suggests the help that you need to move beyond the “scary” 3 of swords image. With that worry expelled, you’ll be able to incubate the new. And James Wells on his blog has a Imaginer / Moon / the dreaming card post up … and dreams are great places to incubate!

    So a powerful message to clear the way for and then practice incubation of ideas this week! I like it!

  • May 25, 2011, 11:08 am Acquafortis

    I am with Maria too. All I keep on searching is peace, away from noise. There seems to be a deep seated desire to unite with one-selves gravitational centre when everything seems going too fast & too exuberant to cope with.

  • May 28, 2011, 5:47 pm Carolyn Cushing

    Ah more synchronicity! Today – the 28th – both The Tarot Lady and Coneflower Tarot – have the 4 of Swords as their cards of the day!

  • May 28, 2011, 6:00 pm Beth

    Ah HA! How about that! We are all entrained with each other since RS11! 🙂