Today’s card is The Serpent, number sixteen of the Major Arcana. In a more traditional deck, this card is known as The Blasted Tower. The Major Arcana shows us the various phases, or lessons if you will, of the spiritual journey. There is a natural progression from The Fool, who represents innocence, naivety, and the beginning of a matter, to Oneness (The World) when one realizes that they are an integral part of all living things in the Universe and that we are all linked by Spirit. Note that moving through the phases of the Major Arcana doesn’t complete your journey. The concepts continue to present themselves to you at ever deeper levels as they spiral in and out of your journey.
The cobra, an ancient symbol of the Goddess and Kundalini energy, represents pure divinity. This divine power can be used for good or evil, positive or negative purposes, thus the initiate (seeker) is faced with a dilemma. Kundalini energy rises and falls naturally in the cycle of each human’s life, according to their spiritual growth pattern. The use of this energy determines the karmic justice that is attached to a person and is dependent on the moral character and spiritual goals. A deep level of of spirituality and balance must be applied to ensure that these cycles are followed and not forced, the results of which can be disastrous.
The keywords for this card are Forced Change and End of a Cycle. This card signifies the ending and beginning of cycles and the initiate (seeker) is being faced with making necessary changes. If we fight against these changes, only suffering will result. The large ‘King’ pillar about which the cobra/woman is coiled represents the World Tree, and the connections between the UpperWorld and Earth, or Gods and mortal men and women. This pillar, and the others in this scene, signify the many paths that each of us experience, and the faces in those pillars, the many lives that each of us live and the shapes each of us have become over that time. A vine can be seen twirling its way around the King pillar; tis is a symbol of the spiritual existence that twists throughout your many incarnations. On the hill behind her stands an ancient oak, symbolic of the many Gods upon which we can call for strength and guidance. Rays of sunshine come from behind the shapeshifter, representing the great force that can be used for creativity or destruction. The seeker has reached a point where connection with the Gods is necessary in order to avoid spiritual disaster.
This card indicates the beginning or ending of a cycle in life. Change and conflict are upon you; unless you are careful and flow with the changes, chaos will follow. Difficult decisions must be made in order to avoid total disruption. Upset in life is necessary to create something new.
May you find that you are at a time of new beginning, and may your endings be swift and painless.