By Kara Cavel, LICSW, Ph.D.
If you have read my contributions to the CML Newsletter in the past, you know how I love to use the practice of Tarot to ground and center me. In keeping with this newly established tradition of writing about this practice, I would like to offer a meditation on “The Lovers.”
I chose this card because it is the 6th card in the Smith-Rider Waite Tarot deck, one of the 22 cards known as the Major Arcana, and June is the 6th month of the year.
The card is full of imagery, but to summarize, we see two people standing in a garden, the Tree of Life behind the male figure, the Tree of Knowledge behind the female figure, and an angel overlooking both. The number six represents harmony, cooperation, and reciprocity.
The two states of reason (head) and passion (heart) are invited to emerge and join as one, helping us consider how to reach a divine and awakened spark within. This spark is difficult to achieve in isolation, and “The Lovers” card suggests that love of others, as a spiritual practice, helps us transcend life’s separation from each other and all beings, returning to the mystical ideal of wholeness. The angel hovers to remind us that we are not alone and that if we look closely and with intention, we can discover connections with all beings despite our differences.
Recently, my partner and I helped one of our senior pets cross the rainbow bridge. This was a difficult decision, but we made it our last act of love to help our beloved animal leave his physical body in peace, surrounded by care and calm. A few days later, a small bird with hints of green feathers flew into our sliding glass door. My heart, tender from our recent loss, cried for the bird as we moved her to safety. We brought a bottle cap full of water and sat with the bird for a while. To my surprise, the bird recovered and flew away. Relief and joy filled my heart, and the connection I felt for the beings of our world was strengthened.
“The Lovers” card reminds to make the decision to love, to ask what I can learn about love from others, and to learn the lessons from others that I may not really want to learn (like how to let go). In both the love I had for our beloved pet, and the concern I had for the temporarily injured bird, I was invited to understand the lesson of letting go and embracing the difficult cycle of birth, death, and re-birth.
During the season of summer, it seems like growth and love are abundant. People are tending to their gardens, flowers, chickens, and walking outdoors more with their furry friends. Everywhere I look, I see the magic of how tending to something with love facilitates growth. And as the summer fades and we transition into yet another season, we will find that there is love in the process of letting go, as we see all that we have tended to slowly move into the dormancy of the winter months.
Let the most abundant season of our year, teach us the importance of how love transforms.