XVI The Tower | The Court Cards
Whether we are anchorite nuns, mothers of millions, CEOs of Fortune 500 companies, we will all experience, God help us, that lightning strike that leaves us shattered like a broken mirror.
Most often we associate this colossal blow with personal disasters such as the death of a loved one; an incident that leaves us cored, without a centre, without the familiar roles that anchored us to our lives so securely.
The tarot card that illustrates this collapse of ourselves is The Tower.
We build a tower for ourselves in life out of all these roles. Each brick builds the tower walls thicker and higher.
Sometimes the tower that we unconsciously create is a restrictive prison – how fed up are you at returning to the family home to slot straight back into the role of ‘rebellious teen’ and you’re nearly 55? Just me?!
Sometimes we nestle inside, secure and hidden behind this enormous facade that we have built – it can protect us. We’re safe here from The Big Bad Wolf. He can huff and puff as much as he likes, but he’s never blowing down these walls.
But of course, he does.
Because they were never really bricks and they were never mortared in place with anything other than our relationships -with outselves and with others.
The bricks tumble and fall and our view of ourselves – and sometimes the way the world views us too – is forever altered.
The number of The Tower in the tarot deck is 16 and we have 16 court cards in the deck. Yes, it’s just a co-incidence but humour me and stick with it for a couple of moments.
For me, all the bricks in the Tower are the court cards. They are all the different faces that we show to the world. The caring Queen of Cups sits alongside the enthusiastic student Page of Swords. Of course, some bricks will be bigger and more important than others. If you are the Head of the IMF, your Pentacles Court bricks will be GINORMOUS and maybe those Cups bricks are reduced to nothing more than some pebbles in the mortar.
Suddenly the lightning bolt strikes and the whole edifice falls apart. Well, that’s got to be the end of the world, right?
But I put it to you that while it is the end of ONE world, it also offers up a brand new opportunity to step into a new one. One where the bricks are in a different order, perhaps with a different priority.
The lightning strike can illuminate you and awaken you to new possibilities.
You can consciously build yourself a NEW Tower. One that better reflects who you are NOW.
And, over time, THAT tower will also tumble and we will take our bricks and begin again.