Welcome to part 9 of my 22 part Tarot Meanings Deep Dive series – each week we explore ONE major arcana card and uncover it’s secrets, symbols and messages.
Today we’re diving into Strength to explore how gentleness (the maiden) can relate to wildness (Lion) and how we can face our fears and meet our challenges with gentleness, respect and compassion.
Grab your Tarot journal and pen, pour yourself a cup of tea and settle in….
Keywords: power from within, fortitude, perseverance, gentleness, respect, compassion, taming
Symbols: Lion (a challenge), infinity loop, mountain, maiden (softness), maiden looking into lions eyes (facing one’s fears and challenges)
Dark side: Not honouring your own boundaries and letting others walk all over you, identifying your soft side as “weak”, not understanding where your true power and strength comes from.
1) Inner Power
Strength represents the power that comes from within as opposed to power gained through outer circumstances or physical strength. A fortitude of the soul. Those who possess this inner power exude a quiet confidence and authority and show respect and compassion toward self and others. These people are calmly rooted in their values and sense of themselves and are not easily manipulated or intimidated.
How does one cultivate this kind of inner strength? By facing one’s fears and loving and respecting others and self.
♥ What fears have you not yet faced? Which one’s are you ready to face?
♥ How can you face your fears AND be gentle and kind to yourself?
♥ Who do you know that possesses this “inner power”? How do you know they have it? How do they treat others?
2) Gentleness (Respect & Compassion)
Strength is about taking a soft, subtle and gentle approach to a challenge. It’s not about forcing your will or whipping anyone or anything into shape. Gentleness is often how we show respect and caring to self and others and Strength recognizes and respects the divine spark in all life – all people, animals, plants and nature.
Strength honours her adversaries and challenges and sees them as opportunities to cultivate more compassion and understanding.
♥ How can you cultivate more respect and compassion for self? For others?
♥ Where in your life are you being harsh, forceful and ungentle? How can you soften your approach?
Sometimes we equate boundaries with being cold, distant and unloving, but Strength knows how to be assertive, stand up for herself and maintain her boundaries yet remain loving, compassionate and respectful. Strength creates her boundaries as a way to honour and respect herself and others.
If self respect and inner power are lacking, setting and maintaining boundaries can be difficult. Strength advises us to set our boundaries from a place of honouring (ourselves and others), as a way to help us be more compassionate and loving.
♥ How do you feel about setting boundaries?
♥ How good are you at maintaining boundaries?
The Wisdom of Strength
True strength is unassuming. True strength comes from within and it has nothing to do with throwing your weight around or maintaining control over others. Strength is all about mastering the art of taking a soft, gentle and kind approach to challenges. You radiate strength when you have respect and compassion for self and others, are able to face your fears and maintain flexible boundaries.
Let me know in the comments below…Did you enjoy this exercise? Did you learn anything new about Strength? Or about yourself?
♥ Join me next week as I dive into The Hermit and reveal the secrets of the most introverted Tarot card in the deck!