Friday, January 4, 2013

Tarot's Number 14 - "Temperance"

"You've got to accentuate the positive,
 Eliminate the negative
And latch on to the affimative
Don't mess with Mister In-between."

                                "Accentuate the Positive" by Johnny Mercer

Maintaining balance in our lives can be tricky. We walk a variety of worlds during a single lifetime.
When one or more of them dominates us our attitudes start down a slippery slope.  The angel in Major Arcana's #14, Temperance, knows a thing or two about control and focused intent.  While our Heavenly friend has one foot planted squarely on the earth, or the material world, the other foot remains in water, the element of the spiritual world.  The emblem on his robe represents spirituality co-existing in the material world.

The angel pours water carefully from one cup to another, reminding us that our spiritual connection must always travel with us no matter what world we're in.  It's too easy to become unduly influenced by the multitude of attitudes and philosophies so readily available to us in the digital age.  From the time we wake up, to the time we fall asleep, our perception of reality is distorted by information gleaned from news, the latest cultural memes, or by the ranting of a political pundit whose ideals we believe we support. One of the hardest things about life these days is to know your own mind.  The Temperance card asks us to carry our inner voice with us and, more importantly, to listen to its message. The angel reminds us to use our spiritually connected self to assess all information we receive.  When we intake information through the spirit, we can decide whether or not it has any value to us in terms of accomplishing our life's mission without our ego becoming involved.  We are free to respond to stimulus rather than merely react to it.

Each moment offers us the chance to start anew - to decide what thoughts and actions fit how we want to live and who we wish to be.  All we have to do is live consciously and accept that all the previous moments in our lives are gone.  The ones in our future haven't happened yet.  There is no regret, no trouble to borrow.  In the present, each moment is sufficient unto itself.  Am I telling you that it's easy to live this way? No.  If living in the moment were easy there wouldn't be any need for spiritual and self-help sections in bookstores.  There would be no need for The Golden Rule, or The Beatitudes.

Wayne Dyer likes to say that on a boat all evidence of forward motion occurs at the bow. The wind hits us head on.  The water splashes against the hull as it cuts through the waves and objects steadily move closer to us.  The evidence of past motion happens at the stern. The boat's wake trails out behind us as we pass the places we've been.  Dyer goes on to remind us that it is very easy to get caught up remembering the past, but that if we wish to truly live in each moment of our lives, we must move to the bow of the boat and experience life as it happens.

Learning to live by bringing spirituality into your everyday life isn't always easy.  That's why the angel is pouring from cup to cup with so much control.  Events happen in our lives that engage our emotions and our egos.  When that happens it's good to have the tools we need in place to help us sort through the issues at hand.  Meditation, fellowship with like minds, books etc., all remind us to reconnect to spirit when we falter.

The year 2013 is still bright and shiny.  Individually, as well as collectively, we have the opportunity to make it into anything we want.  The possibilities are always limitless.  Turn off the cable news, ignore the community conflicts that appear so urgent and connect in your inner spirit.  Let it guide you.  And remember that the best view of all is at the bow of the boat.


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