Roots of Asia Tarot:
8 of Swords
The next 3 Swords cards, the 8, 9 and 10 look “very RWSy” to me.
RWSy!?? Is that a word?
Well, it is now – and you read it here first – maybe……;)
The 8 of Swords shows us a person, sitting in full lotus shielding his/ her eyes so as not to see. The person is surrounded by swords. An Owl is perched on his/ her head.
In the LWB we are confronted with 8 of the vices and pitfalls that every practitioner of Buddhism has to struggle, guard against and ultimately overcome: When I translate my German copy, I have:
1 -Being caught in the body – meaning being caught in everything ordinary, mundane, including sexuality, lust, needs of all kind and creature comfort.
2 – Being in company of negative influences – that includes about everything we with our “Western sensibilities” would assume it does, but ultimately also the problem of being away from the Shanga, the community of Buddhist practitioners on the same path…..
3 -Wasting of time and energy – includes following any and all notions and needs of the body and the ego and anything, that keeps us from following the Dharma, from meditating and concentrating on our spiritual advancement.
4 – It also means indulging in things like gossip, or idle talk, kind words that are not necessary to be spoken, kind words, that make oneself feel good when saying them, kind advice that was not asked for and or is not in line with advance in the Dharma,
Simple silly fun is also frowned upon: just as frowned upon are games and games of chance …..There is no such thing as chance, all is grounded in cause and effect…..!!
So, basically, what I am doing here is also frowned upon, (- but I will not let that bother me…)
5 – Further one should not have or cultivate unsuitable friends = ones that are NOT members of the Shanga
6 – nor should one ever be lazy!!!!
7 – …or excessively sexual!
8 – But lastly one also should not become an obsessive ascetic! One should follow the golden middle.
One should not strive to be the most devout or most knowledgeable in the Shanga – community of Buddhist disciples or meditate to excess…..
So, as I see it, all these “DO NOT orders” have the practitioner here in this image badly frazzzzeled!
I feel for him/ her.
But Of course, you all know me and so know, that I am immediately focusing on the Owl on his/ her head.
Buddhism like Siberian shamanism sees the Owl as a bringer of esoteric wisdom. Help in “seeing through things,” through the darkness and fear and confusion.
So, to me she says, calm down, do not give up, even ifff it all is a bit much!
The 8 swords in the background I see as forming a protective half circle around the person. They have his/ her back so nothing can come from there!Seeking refuge in meditation here is a safe place. One also will learn quite a bit – also quite a few hard lessons…..
This image feels very familiar to me:
I can not tell you how often I went on a trance journey and felt Lira, my Miahanit, sitting right on top of my head, digging her claws into my scalp and so somehow steadying me and helping me stay “on point”.
Then, when I come out of trance, I often put my hands in front of my eyes just like this, still seeing the flimmering Otherworld, but already hearing and feeling my tonal surroundings.
Then, rubbing my eyes helps me to re-focus them and see through the receding visions back into the every day World around me…..