When they go low, we go high.
What a busy week lies ahead! We welcome the New Moon, our Jewish friends begin the Days of Awe with the New Year of Rosh Hashana. We feel the stirring of Jupiter’s slow turn direct (which began Saturday). And we are witnessing countless existential challenges to land, sea, air, and humanity. Into that bubbling cauldron of beginnings and changes, let us welcome The Lovers.
On the surface, The Lovers is often assumed to focus on our romantic love relationships. And often, it does. But this important card of the Major Arcana is more precisely about how our true nature is revealed by the choices we make.
In fact, in some decks, such as the Tarot of Marseilles, The Lovers depicts a man standing between two women, evidently deciding whether he will succumb to darker temptations, or choose a more respectable (but perhaps less spicy) relationship.
In the Rider-Waite-Smith deck, there is no temptress, but a more mystical scene, suggesting the choice made in the Garden of Eden. The woman gazes heavenward, the snake and the tree behind her; the man looks to the woman.
Presiding over this tableau is an angel, sometimes identified as Raphael, but (based on what we know of the Order of the Golden Dawn’s rituals), it is probably the solar fire angel, Michael.
Thus, the R-W-S deck broadens the message of The Lovers to be, not only choices about a particular relationship or social situation, but how, who, and why we love.
As you may know, the opposite card of The Lovers is The Devil (to learn more about why this is the case, you can visit here).
The Devil of the Tarot is how we allow ourselves to be weakened and paralyzed through our fears, habits, and self-sabotage. We make our deals with The Devil in order to stay numb, in denial, or keep us “safe.”
It is a devil’s bargain, for instance, when we trade freedom of speech, rightful protest, and even righteous expressions of rage for the fist of “law and order.” Or sacrifice our elders, our schoolchildren, and even our own health for “the economy.”
But The Lovers invokes the higher self. It suggests that our true nature is to be free, unafraid, and at home in the world, which is the paradise that was never lost. It shines before us with all its hope, beauty, and blessings.
What do you believe?
Curses and Vengeance
I write these words in the face of a powerful riptide of evidence to the contrary.
I know that everyone reading this has friends and loved ones, or may themselves be, facing death and calamity beyond comprehension: wildfires, economic crisis, massive societal injustice, hurricanes, and an utterly ruinous, botched response to the pandemic.
Meantime, The Occupant flaunts all good sense, blaming everyone else for these tragedies at every turn. He tramples on Justice, deliberately works to crush the spirit of Liberty, and spits his putrid hatred on the sovereignty of the sacred Earth.
The fear is huge, and growing, that he might not vacate the premises IF he, in fact, loses the election.
Yes, I know.
Although, I do subscribe to the Rede, “An it harm none, do as ye will,” I can absolutely see how these are desperate times when wishing for or even working magick aimed at deliberate harm is tempting.
But The Lovers is a reminder that we are living in a multiverse that is created in the heart of Divine Love.
Does this mean that I only wish The Occupant rays of light, rainbows, and unicorns? Hell no. I want him bloody gone, scraped like dung from the shoe of history.
But I still believe that our greatest not-so-secret weapon is actually the most powerful force in the multiverse. Love is not a cliché, and it’s not the sappy, gooey New Age gunk that we may have been swindled into believing.
Love is a nude, profoundly vulnerable woman who can look up and see, actually see, the presence the exalted messenger, Mikail. Love is a wide open, defenseless man, who knows to look to the woman, in order to experience this Divine blessing.
Love is the two, together, in harmony, in a garden that was never lost. Not even in the face of firestorms beyond understanding, or a literal demon who is feeding off the energy stirred by his wickedness.
The Lovers teaches us that we are always safe and empowered. We do not need to sell our souls for protection. We are cradled in the arms of Love, even unto the grave and beyond. We need only break the spell and remember — and then act straight from that knowing.
The ONLY Thing That Works
This week, the Universe may be offering you a very important choice. It may be about a relationship, or something else that you care deeply about.
To what or whom do you give yourself without fear or reservations? What would you choose if you had no fear, but simply a heart overflowing with joy and trust? What would you do if you knew you could not fail?
With whom does your heart simply open, so that your neediness or fears melt away and you see them for what they are — illusion? In what situations do you become filled with the awareness that you are being blessed?
In harmony with this week’s card, and at whatever crossroads of choices we may find ourselves, Michelle Obama sums it up best:
Over the past four years, a lot of people have asked me, “When others are going so low, does going high still really work?”
My answer: going high is the only thing that works, because when we go low, when we use those same tactics of degrading and dehumanizing others, we just become part of the ugly noise that’s drowning out everything else. We degrade ourselves. We degrade the very causes for which we fight.
But let’s be clear: going high does not mean putting on a smile and saying nice things when confronted by viciousness and cruelty. Going high means taking the harder path. It means scraping and clawing our way to that mountain top. Going high means standing fierce against hatred while remembering that we are one nation under God, and if we want to survive, we’ve got to find a way to live together and work together across our differences…
We are being tested. Love is a choice.
In the dark of the Moon, plant your seeds. And in the name of all you hold holy, choose love.