Today’s card is from The Wildwood Tarot by Mark Ryan and John Matthews. The illustration is by the brilliant Will Worthington.
9 of Bows – Respect.
This card has come up a lot on my personal readings recently and has given me food for thought. At first glance the Wodwose on the card looks rather ferocious as if he means to frighten you away from your chosen path through the wild woods of your inner self. And in a way that is his intention. He is here to challenge your beliefs and actions. He stands in your path, blocking forward movement. He is the challenge that has to be overcome to reach your goal.
When we meet challenges and obstacles in life we often do a detour to avoid facing them. Sometimes they are fears within us, at other times these may be physical blockages to our actions. They may even be other people’s aversions to our chosen path. The problem with avoidance is that we can never reach our goal. We may instead reach a lesser destination that doesn’t meet with our expectations or fit our soul purpose. For a while this destination may even seem ok, but after a while it will not satisfy our needs. The answer is simple. To reach your goal you have to overcome challenges. So where does respect come in?
Respect comes into this situation in many ways. Firstly to overcome the Wodwose you must first respect him. You must offer him the chance to prove what he is, and why he is there. Look at your challenge carefully. Dig deep to find out what the cause may be. If it is another’s view of your path, why are they challenging you? Is it because you are doing things in the wrong way, you have some priority wrong, you are not offering respect to others but instead washing over them with your course of action? Perhaps it is merely their fears surfacing in which case you have no need to take them on board.
On the other hand you may need to overcome a fear to reach your goal. Don’t just tell yourself that you are being weak, take time to respect your fear, look at what specifically bothers you. Is there a message from your subconscious in that fear, that is warning you of something, or is the fear misplaced? In other words whatever the blockage is that is stopping you from reaching your goal, you must respect it and spend some time with it so that you can gain any wisdom it is offering you, and then work out how to overcome it in a beneficial way that means it will not reoccur.
Another way that respect comes in here is, when you have challenged the Wodwose and won you gain greater respect for yourself and your abilities. You gain self belief. But you also gain the respect of others who have seen your struggle and know your hardships.
You gain respect for your goal. When something is hard to reach, but you still get there, you appreciate it far more than something that is easy. You respect its value in your life and the lessons you have learnt in reaching it. You also respect others in their struggles to reach their own goals.
Respect is something that can only be earned through hard work and learning the lessons thrown at you on your path. So what challenge lies before you? What does your Wodwose look like? Is he outside of you or within you? Spend some time today studying him. Show him the respect he deserves and then he may answer your questions and show you how to reach your destination. Battle and avoidance are not the correct way now. It is time to study this opponent and see him for what he really is.
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