Staying bright in the winter is a challenge for me. When 3 degrees above freezing is considered balmy, and the sun starts setting just after 4:15, I can’t help but get a little gloomy. But, since this is going to be the situation for at least another four months, and I don’t want to be miserable that long, I thought I’d ask my cards for a little ‘how to get through the winter’ coping advice. Here’s what it said:
In the position describing the general energy surrounding my question, the Knight of Swords appeared. In the RWS version of the card, a young knight is travelling at top speed on an energetic white horse. His sword is in the air, his red cape and feather plume are flying behind him, the clouds are ominous in the sky. Is that me!? It’s certainly how it feels outside today.
This figure seems to be charging into the storm. He’s not afraid of the wind or the snow. He’s got things to do and he’s moving so quickly he’s probably not cold at all. ‘Don’t coddle yourself’ is what I’m hearing. ‘Move fast and face the weather head on! ‘
The second card drawn represents the suggested attitude to take during this cold, dark season. The card in this position is the 2 of Wands. A man in a stately cape and tunic stands holding a wand in his left hand, a globe in his right. He looks out across a gorgeous landscape of lush trees and ocean. Another wand is securely fixed to the balcony wall beside him.
Whenever I see this image I think of California – the sky has a soft haze (smog maybe), the ocean, the mountains, a celebrity mansion. It could be many places, but my deck knows me well. It’s almost a cruel joke that it gave me this card. Is the recommended attitude to be as I am when I’m in one of my favourite places? Maybe.
I think the card is trying to say that whether you’re in the light or the dark, the cold or the warm, it’s up to you to decide what you want your world to feel like. The fire is inside, not out, as is your perception of the universe.
And another thing …. if you hate it so much in the cold, you can always go find a warmer place. But if you decide to stay where you are, that’s your choice too. It’s about actually making a choice, accepting that choice, and moving forward with positive action. One thing this card is definitely not saying is to wallow around and complain.
And in the final position, the Emperor card appeared. Its placement describes the physical behaviour recommended by the deck. My first thought when looking at the image is that this guy has on a really warm outfit, and he’s wearing amour under it. I also notice he’s got long hair and a beard to keep him toasty. And what’s with that orange glow on the mountains? Is it the sun or a giant fire he’s built for himself?
Like the 2 of Wands, this card is about taking command of yourself and your own physical environment. But it’s taking the message to an even higher level. This is the Emperor we’re dealing with here, a Major player. What he decides is what happens.
This card asks us to take our world in hand and make it what we will. The Emperor is all about practical physical action. If you want to stay warm, put on a good coat. And if it’s illumination you’re looking for, light a fire or turn on a lamp. If the snow buries your car, dig it out. The message is straightforward – determine what you want and make it happen.
So that’s the answer. No sugar for me. There’s work to do, and no time to waste on whimpering. Step up and face the season. Make my own warmth and sunlight. And maybe a trip south sometime between February and April is in order as well. We’ll see.
Till then, I’ll enjoy the relative mild outside right now, and this weekend I’ll get my winter wardrobe together. The snow will be here soon and I’m going to be ready.