By Sarah Taylor
Courage. Regenerator. Master.
There is no explicit presence of the element Air in today’s reading; there is no allocated space for your thoughts to lead you through this leg of your journey. Instead, they play a supporting role to your creativity, your emotions, your connection to your body and those things of use in the world around you.
I have tended to view the Rider-Waite Smith version of the Seven of Wands as an emergence of the unconscious, and the ego-based reaction of resistance: an armed figure who is alone save for the six wands that rise up to meet him, held by no-one. This breakthrough into awareness is echoed in the Voyager Tarot.
The imagery in this version of the Seven of Wands is archetypal, representative of the world of Spirit; the only hint of human-ness is a hand holding a stone cross. There is a sense of one’s being brought into the presence of something larger than oneself, a form of reckoning, a confrontation.
The word “confrontation” can conjure up images of conflict and aggression. It might be that these are by no means new to you. They have been with you all the time; they are you: the you that has felt little peace, the you that has fought to hold something in check, and which is now asking for you to let it go, and let it in. In psychotherapy, the term “confrontation” is a wake-up call, and the message it carries can come through to you like a gradually brightening light, or a strident alarm that throws you out of bed. Either way, you have always been the architect of your own awakening, and you have the means to work with it.
The title, Courage, suggests drawing on what is available to you to support you in this experience: you have creativity, you have heart, you have others — whether people, or places, or things. Underlying all of these is your intuition, which is the intermediary between conscious and unconscious, helping to ease communication between the known and the unknown.
But if you’re counting on thinking your way out of this one, then it might be useful to understand that it was thought that got you there in the first place: thought at the expense of your connection to your heart, your inner fire, your rootedness in existence. What was rational and logical — what made sense — offered its own form of safety. Next to thinking, after all, the alternatives can feel chaotic, a forest of grimacing totemic gods. But gods laugh at our plans. So do our heart and the fire burning inside us. Right now matter has little need of intellect; we justify much on the path of compromise.
And, so, after emergence, a re-connection to wisdom. The Sages in the Voyager Tarot are the elders, the wise man and woman, and both the Sage of Cups and the Sage of Worlds indicate a maturing of heart-centeredness and deepening of purpose. From vertical, upward-thrusting movement, the cards transition into circles — the nautilus, the wheels — suggesting a new cycle. What is unleashed from its psychic prison becomes a valuable resource that is both practical and holds the potential for mastery.
Astrology/Elemental correspondences: Seven of Wands (Mars in Leo), Sage of Cups (the earthy aspect of water), Sage of Worlds (the earthy aspect of earth)
The Voyager Tarot website: www.voyagertarot.com
If you want to experiment with tarot cards and don’t have any, we provide a free tarot spread generator using the Celtic Wings spread, which is based on the traditional Celtic Cross spread. This article explains how to use the spread.