8. Strength – The 21 Faces of God


There are three rules to bullfighting, parar, templar
y mandar, stop the bull, act with elegance and restraint, and control the bull. This is a good metaphor the four cardinal
virtues, one of which is strength, and they are needed to tame the ego. The ego must be controlled, and eventually
killed, just like the bull. The key to this card is learning to control
the power of the Chariot. On the material plane, the ego ruled and fulfilling
its desires reached its apex in the power of the Chariot, but now we enter the intermediate
stage between the body and the spirit, we are firmly in the realm of the psyche, and
the key is to reign in the ego, have it die so we can be reborn to the spirit. On this second level of the cards, the psychic
level, we encounter three of the four cardinal virtues which date back to Plato- fortitude
or courage in the Strength card., Justice, Temperance and finally wisdom, which we could
associate with The High Priestess. All four of these card are necessary for us
to begin to transcend the desire and passion of the ego. The Platonic soul has three parts, the charioteer
of reason which guides the two horses of spirited passion and the appetites. The three virtues guide the soul, reason needs
the wisdom of the high priestess, passion needs the courage of Strength, and the appetites
need Temperance. If these virtues guide the soul correctly,
one lives the Just life. With the virtues reigning in the ego, we become
aware of ourselves, of our persona in Jungian terms. There is a separation, the physical self,
which is insatiable and entirely focused on survival and reproduction discovers the other. The time is arriving to look inward and encounter
what it is that makes us aware of ourselves. The voracious lion will now lies down with
the lamb. One of the ego’s most deceptive tricks is
that of righteous indignation, as it gives our passions for violence and power full justification. It takes fortitude and courage to not give
in. Forgive Herod? Forgive the Romans? Forgive them all. But the Romans have butchered hundreds of
innocent people, young people old people lives ended without
mercy, without trial. Surely you who can’t mean to forgive that
master. We must meet the sword with
the sword. All who take up the sword shall perish by
the sword. But we must end the voice of weeping in Israel! Barabbas, your zeal blinds you to the truth. The New Jerusalem will not be built by
murder and uprisings. The wisdom of God will fill the land as water
fills the sea. The lion will lie down with the lamb. There’ll be no more killing or
destroying and the voice of weeping shall be heard no more.

One Reply to “8. Strength – The 21 Faces of God”

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