We Live Within Dichotomy. And That’s A Good Thing

Ashes And Earth Tarot

The monthly tarot calendar is a collaboration with Ashes and Earth Tarot.

—April 2022—
Joy Amid The Chaos

April | 3 of Cups and 7 of Swords

How do we find joy when everything around us is falling apart? How do we keep our hearts open when all we want to do is build walls to protect them? In these challenging times, it’s hard not to feel an underlying sense of grief and fear in all we do. It’s hard not to feel a sense of guilt when we enjoy ourselves, while we see so many others suffering. We think, ‘I can’t be okay until everyone is okay.’

Firstly, this sense of cognitive dissonance is an integral part of being an empathetic human being. It’s impossible for our hearts not to ache when we see harm and destruction around us. Empathy is so important in our experience. We need it to relate to one another. To provide true support, aid, action, and create heart-centered courageous change.

It’s important to remember that empathy comes from love. It comes from wanting to see others live with safety, equality, and happiness. And it’s also okay to want those things for ourselves. The 3 of Cups asks that we bring more joy into our hearts. That we see joy as healthy for our emotional wellbeing. It does no one any favors when you don’t allow yourself some respite amongst the chaos. Yes, acknowledge the pain and suffering. Yes, take the actions you can. Yes, process what you see happening in the world. And? Turn off the news. And? Spend time with those who light up your life. And? Take adventures. Read juicy novels. Eat delicious food. Watch movies that make you laugh so hard you could cry. Refill your cup.

The 7 of Swords represents a lack mentality. It’s a survival instinct that kicks in when we feel we aren’t safe or don’t have enough. It’s what makes us hoard supplies before a disaster, no matter the cost to our community. Or hoard our money when things are tight, even when there are people around us with so much less. When we feel afraid, it can bring out the worst in us.

Don’t let what is happening in the world trigger this inside of you. If you are feeling twinges of this, step back and recognize it. What can you do to calm your system? How can you reinforce your sense of safety?
We have to acknowledge the both/and of life. We have to lean into the paradox of things, rather than wanting life to ‘be okay and safe for everyone.’ It’s not going to be. We all go through times of great suffering. And then the pendulum swings the other way. We can be grateful and wish for more. We can be happy and feel sadness. We can be angry and have sympathy. Most of the time, we live in this dichotomy. And that’s a good thing.

We can learn to embrace this going forward. We alone cannot remove the burdens of the world, but we can understand that they are a piece of our puzzle. Life is never without pain and hardship, but it is also never without love, joy, and wonder. Let’s celebrate this complexity.

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