Weekly Tarot Card for April 16-22:
Four of Swords
This week the Four of Swords confirms it’s time to rest and reflect as the dust settles on recent changes we have implemented. Any time big shifts occur in life, it’s necessary to take stock, checking in with the self to confirm aspects of identity and renew personal truths. In the discussions of the previous weeks’ cards, I’ve been using the example of moving homes to illustrate our theme of dealing with change. I actually did move homes recently, so these examples aren’t arbitrary! It was a huge change after spending five and a half years in one place (and came as a full-on Tower moment that I had been resisting). After the hard work of moving, I was tempted to reassemble my life as closely as possible to the old one, putting up the same pictures, recreating old furniture arrangements, but instead I took some time to get to know myself in the new situation. What still suited me, and what needed to be altered to fit these surroundings?
Exertion transforms us. We learn we are capable of a lot more than we thought, and it’s important to incorporate this new perspective into our identities. We also owe it to our minds and bodies to honor those efforts with recuperation. In the Motherpeace deck’s imagery, the Four of Swords shows a figure self-isolated inside a meditation pyramid designed for healing and chakra activation. Obviously, it’s not realistic for most of us to enjoy a fully sequestered retreat any time we need rest and recuperation. We have jobs, families, and other responsibilities than can’t be extensively put on hold. But even with those responsibilities, it is possible to find time for healing and reflection, often in connection with self-care activities that are already part of our regular routines. It’s just a matter of adding some extra awareness into these actions.
Exercise for this week: Realigning the self
How might you create mini-retreats inside of your busy life? Take a walk around the neighborhood, sit in silence in a favorite place, or enjoy a cup of tea at the local café while you write down your thoughts about recent experiences. If it’s too tough to carve out this extra time, turn one of the times you already spend alone taking care of your basic needs into a personal ritual. For example, use bath or shower time as a mini-retreat by increasing awareness of the activity as yours and yours alone. Be present with yourself instead of just going through the motions as a means to an end. Select a special scented soap or add salts and herbs to your bath. Play your favorite relaxing music. Be aware of each part of your body and how it feels as you honor it through cleansing. If you have trouble finding time alone, don’t be ashamed to ask for help; perhaps you can trade breaks with a co-parent or a friend who is also in need of a little self-care.
You might also take a suggestion from this illustration in the Motherpeace Tarot and give some attention to each of the chakras as a way to reconnect with the self. You can do this through meditation, if that is your practice. (Peacock Ore is said to be a great stone for realigning all the chakras, so consider incorporating a piece of it into your session.) If you prefer to engage with these concepts in a more cerebral way, try a journaling exercise exploring how each of the following are represented in your life. Give extra attention to any that seem underrepresented: