For those of you who treat doubt as a sign of weakness, this post might be an eye-opening one. One thing I just want to share before going forward is that doubt, if treated well, can be a powerful way to move forward in life.
A few weeks ago, a student came up to me stating that he’s interested in tarot reading and wants to learn it. As the conversation started, I explained the basic concepts of the archetypes, suits, spreads, and more. Eventually, everybody always wants to be read — and I love to do it for them — so I pulled a spread for her in response to her question, “How can I be more committed to my creative work? What is that one thing which is holding me back?”
The following spread suggested several things, but in the place where a card is meant to suggest what tool to use to move forward in life, the situation appeared a particularly interesting card — the eight of swords. The card shows a woman loosely bound and blindfolded, surrounded by swords that are stuck in the ground. It may seem like she is a prisoner of some sort, but if you look more closely, you’ll see that if she took off her loose ropes, unblindfolded herself — both of which she is perfectly capable of doing — she could simply walk out of the circle of swords.
This further signified water pools at her feet, suggesting intuition and emotions which, presently, she cannot see. She is not aware of her own power.
Hmm, then I thought. How to interpret this card as a tool to move forward. The card, and the situation at hand, screamed to me that my student was filled with doubt about her creative talents and how to handle them with success. And then it struck me — doubt was the tool to move forward. Doubt — the concept of it, how it played out in her life, what it looked — should be what she next explored in her form of art.
As a conclusion, Yes, you can live a whole life avoiding things that might hurt you, scare you, bring you down or make you uncomfortable. But with the passage of time, a life built in this way will begin to feel less like life and more like a prison. The medicine for avoidance is acceptance and moving forward.
So my question for you today is this: What is your eight of swords? What is putting you in that prison cell, that you refuse to take off your blindfold to look at, so that you stay safe in your circle of steel? Is it doubt? Is it pain? Is it tenderness? or Is it love?
Hard to answer, I do realize this. Let me help you here. First, say it slowly out loud to yourself. Then, if possible, draw a picture of it. Or write a letter on it or a brief story about it. Sing a song you made up about it or dance about how it feels. But just express, don’t hold back what you got inside of you.
Here’s a famous Carrie Fisher quote, “Take your broken heart, make it into art.”
So, it’s your time. Take your pain out, and become its partner. Look it in the eye, and say, “It’s time we got to know each other better.” Because this is the only way to get ahead of the situations you are facing in life.
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