XI – Strengt / Lust (♌︎)
Strength by G A Rosenberg
Surrender the struggle
to her passionate embrace
Strength found through release.
Give forth to every yearning
real and imagined
Let yourself go into ecstasy
Ride the Lion with Seven heads
with Bare abandon
Know me through pleasure
Yearn for satiation
yet care less to find it
Abandon yourself to all forms of debauch
and know me there
Drink deep from my grail
and loose yourself
beyond all reasoning.
Let me be whore and mistress
and giver of delight
for in passion’s heights I am found by all
in surrender to every desire
you will drink of my cup
and know madness
and union with my mysteries
True Strength comes not from repression
but through knowledge of the beast within
free yourself in my cup of pleasure .
— G A Rosenberg
What does it mean to master the inner self? Does it mean that we clamp down on our every wayward thought, habit and desire? I have met many people like that and they tend to resemble time bombs or pressure valves that will one day lead to a disastrous explosion. We cannot find that kind of inner control by repression. For one thing, it becomes way too easy to lose sight of that which we are suppressing in the first place and where our hungers lie.
True Strength comes from letting our feelings and hungers out and examining them in a loving and compassionate way. It means finding places and situations where we may do this safely. By giving reign to these passions, we learn to name them and work with them and use them. Our wants, desires and wounds that need to be healed are seldom the problem. It is the way we treat them that tends to make them into uncontrollable demons that terrify us. It takes strength and courage to face our demons and find that they may become our greatest allies.
In his Thoth deck Aleister Crowley calls this card Lust. Many people are afraid of the strengths of their lusts. They want or need things that they feel they have to keep secret and lose sight of why and how they lust. The satisfaction of our desires can lead to union with an ecstatic union with our inner selves if we allow them to. There are always ways to do this that do not involve harming others or ourself. In this way we come to wisdom and a greater self-confidence and mastery than any we have known before.
Astrological Correspondence-Leo(♌︎)-The Leo energy has immense self of itself and its power. It is as enthusiastic and courageous as its symbol the Lion. It is ruled by the sun and takes its pride of place in leadership and holds it through its sense of dignity and honour. The Leo energy is great for friendship but needs to know it has control. It likes to have the spotlight and can be very dramatic. Leo has an immense capacity for enjoyment of life in all of its forms but wants to both make it fun for everyone and wants everyone to know that it comes from its largesse. Leo is amazing at group dynamics especially when it is at the head of the pack. Leo is an innovative energy and dislikes few things as much as routine.
Runic Correspondence-Uruz(“Aurochs”)–Uruz is the rune of sexuality and health. It is associated with the wild boar or aurochs. Uruz is unrestrained health, strength and energy and there is very little repressed about it. While the force of the rune may seem threatening, it offers an opportunity if one flows with it and learns to master the force through learning its ways. This is the rune of the warrior and also of the wanton. Other runes attributed to Strength are Wunjo and Sowilho
Path on the Tree of Life 19-Teth-The meaning of Teth is Serpent. It is known as the intelligence of the secrets of spiritual activity. It represents both control of wild animals and discourse with spiritual beings. Since the serpent is the serpent of wisdom, it does not represent a control of the control but rather control of the heart. It connects the sephiroth of Chesed (grace or mercy) and Geburah (Strength or Severity). It takes the devotion of Chesed to harness the strength of Geburah, a willingness to understand the wildness within rather than to try to surpress or repress it. Teth’s number is 9 and represents the feminine energy of the triple goddess.
When the Strength card turns up in a reading, it may indicate that it is in a time when we feel that the querent has things under control. Things that have been stressful have been mastered and the querent has confidence in their ability to deal with anything that may come up. The card may also indicate that there have been inner struggles that have been resolved not through brute force or through repression but with compassion towards themselves and others. Perhaps the querent is undergoing some form of inner test where they are attempting to master either an addiction or some perceived weakness. The Strength card could be leading them towards the hunger that the weakness is feeding and show that they have it within themselves to satiate the hunger without the addictive behaviour. This leads to true mastery of the situation rather than repression. If this is a present struggle than the querent can be assured that this mastery will come in time and that they will find the inner strength they need.The Strength card can also indicate that the querent needs to present a stronger more self assured face to the world.
Inversed the Strength card may show that the querent feels week and that they can no longer continue the struggle. They may feel like they are the victims of their inner demons and lack confidence. It may indicate addictive behaviour that has been triggered in some way or it may represent a long term struggle. The Strength card reversed may indicate that they are in a relationship that is destructive and where the passion is out of control in a negative sense. The querent may need to be reminded of struggles they have overcome in the past and mastered and need to be more compassionate towards themselves.
“George smiles to himself, with entire self-satisfaction. Yes, I am crazy, he thinks. That is my secret; my strength.”
― Christopher Isherwood
It is doubtful that I will ever see life in the same way that the majority of people in my environment do. On the day that this ceased to be a concern for me I felt liberated. No longer would I try to wear a reality view that fit me worse than the borrowed suit I wore to my brother’s wedding. No longer would I try to follow the crowd while my inner voice shrieked and howled that this is not how its supposed to be. Instead of worrying how others see me I have given myself a much more difficult criteria. I now have to act in accordance with how I see myself. The biggest difference is that when I put the view of others ahead of my own inner self, part of me died. Every time I act with the integrity of my being, my life shines brighter.
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Aeon by G A Rosenberg
At the Jewel’s Centre by G A Rosenberg
Nine of Wands (Strength / Intensity)
Nine of Wands (Strength) by G A Rosenberg
Once you are sure then proceed
Beware of Judgement
Once you are sure then proceed
At Dawn they come
I hear the drums beating
as they plan their approach
I alone remain
to meet them
I cannot give way
Will this battle be the one I cannot win?
I will not surrender
My gods watch over me and so much has been lost
The drums echo louder as I kneel in prayer
Leaning on my staff for support
My company of nine
eight well used and on e freshly carved
tell of other times
that I came through
Drumming louder, drumming stronger
and voices heard
“The dr will see you now
you may go in”
–G A Rosenberg
The suite of Wands deal with force-creative, spiritual, and vital. The Nines represent a coming to completion of the energy involved if not the completion itself. This energy has been through almost its whole cycle of manifestation. It has seen conflicts and resolution and tho weary it is ready for anything that comes its way. Tho after encountering conflict and emerging victorious do we forever after have the expectation of conflict somewhere in our minds. Are we perhaps too ready to see everything as a conflict? Perhaps or perhaps we have come to a healthy point where we see everything that comes our way positive or negative as being a challenge. The difference between a conflict and a challenge is that while conflict always needs to be met with either greater conflict or surrender, a challenge takes much more flexibility and fluidity.
Astrological Correspondence – Moon in Sagittarius – This energy is both competitive and adaptable. It is not a laboured one that thoroughly plans its every move but one that changes to fit every contest. It grows impatient when held to any plan. The Moon in Sagittarius is optimistic and its optimism carries it through no matter what it may encounter. It is a very in the moment energy and will always forge its own unique path even if its not willing to stick around and take responsibility for debris in its wake afterwards.
I Ching Correspondence – 7) Shi – The Army / Multitude
The Trigram for Earth is over that of Water. This hexagram ties back to the days when China had no standing army but the peasant class would when needed during war time serve. This made it unnecessary to have a large number of men at hand always in readiness for conflict. Water stored in earth arises only when necessary. It is always good to avoid the use of force if there are alternatives. When the use of force does become necessary proper application of it is essential. It is also useful to adapt how we use our force according to both inner will and outer circumstances.
When the Nine of Wands shows up in a reading, there may be an indication that it is time to marshall our strength and be in readiness for conflict. It may also mean that we are ready to take on any challenge that may come our way and be able to meet it fully. The Nine of Wands may also mean that we are involved in a contest for the ‘thrill of the game’ rather than to gain anything specific. This card often speaks of a great struggle, depending on where it comes in the reading, it is either ongoing, in the past or about to start. In any case, it is a challenge that will be well met.
The Nine of Wands reversed in a reading may show that we are being over-cautious and hyper-vigilant. We may have been preparing ourselves for a great battle for so long that we have grown rigid and unyielding and jump at shadows. It can mean that we need to become vulnerable for awhile so that we can once again be ready to engage with proper and flexible readiness.
“In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.”
― Albert Camus
Bleak o’erhanging mood
Have to look up to see down
Glad I’m not there now
When I was younger, I’d go into the dark a few times a month. I’d mope around with an unhappiness so intense that people could feel if not see the dark cloud hanging over me. I was unhappy with my self, unhappy with my life and I wasn’t quite sure how to change it. These moods would never last very long. Eventually I would joke my way out of it as I can’t go very long without noticing something that strikes me as funny. If I strung enough of those together, my mood would inevitably improve.
As I got older and learned to watch my moods and my self from the perspective of the witness, these moods came far less often and were a lot shorter in duration. Part of me misses feeling that intense of an emotion however dark tho I did learn from it that I do have that capacity for feeling. A good thing to know.
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Dreaming in Colour by G A Rosenberg
Soap Bubble by G A Rosenberg