I started shuffling for this week's reading with a lot of curiosity. What would the cards have to say now that we're in the midst of summer, starting (or continuing) to stretch our wings into the extra free time and warm weather.
We tend to see time off as inherently relaxing and rejuvenating. Just look at all the commercials for cruises in the Caribbean with beaming families cavorting in the ocean. The reality, however, can be a lot different, especially since we're conditioned to value productivity above all else these days.
What happens when we stop being productive and just relax?
The reading for this week shows the more complex reality of leaving the at times comforting and at times stifling confines of our normal routines.
We begin with The Devil, a card that suggests we may be tempted to jump into some wild hedonism right out of the gate (I'm looking at you, 4th of July...) Pleasure, overindulgence, and excess are calling to us all at the beginning of this week.
This card is a reminder for us to be safe and as moderate as we can without shying away from fun completely. Yes, it can be done, though it might not match up with our usual way of cutting loose.
The Devil often refers to well-worn negative patterns. In what ways are we comfortable being careless and wild? What part of us does this behavior serve? And what can we do to step outside these ruts?
This is a card that asks us to rethink the usual and peer into why we're so attached to certain rituals.
It isn't necessarily all negative. Sometimes we need to immerse ourselves in our bad habits so that we can realize we've actually become sick of them and need something else.
The Eight of Cups shows exactly this transformation. It's a bit of a melancholy card, but one also steeped in bravery and transformation. In the middle of the week we'll be asking ourselves some deep questions and heading off to find the answers.
This is a card that highlights moments where we choose to look for new meaning in our lives. Sure, what we have could be "enough" (i.e. the negative habits of The Devil), but right now we're sensing that there's more out there. More growth, more bounty, and more joy.
Summer has a tendency to bring this out in us. It's the unspoken side-effect of free time: it also gives us the time to think more about our lives and to feel th feelings we were able to avoid when we were busy.
So after we have a jaunt in th seductive excesses of The Devil we find ourselves a bit hungover and motivated to make some healthier decisions either physically, mentally, or spiritually. Or all three.
Solitude and introspection will be immensely helpful in making sense of it all. The Two of Swords shows us making a helpful connection between our emotions, intuition, and thoughts towards the end of the week. The clarity we're seeking will be found best my removing oureselves from external distractions and focusing on our own feelings, thoughts, and perceptions.
If we're feeling a bit burnt out and maybe dragging our feet in making some adjustments to our way of doing things it might be helpful to remind ourselves that we have all the tools and all the time we need. Immediate action is not necessary right now and we can give ourselves the helpful luxury of feeling things out and letting it all percolate into coherent thoughts.
There's no rush and no pressure. Just us, time, and the beginning of a new and exciting way of being in the world.