Welcome back to your weekly Tarot Tuesday! It’s official, humanity is collectively experiencing some very strange and vivid dreams. (Both the waking and the sleeping kind, come to think of it. Maybe we’ve been in a dream this entire time? Anyway.) The other night I had a dream that I got “TEMPERANCE” tattooed in very big bold capital letters across my arm. Ironically, I got it done very hastily, realizing only when I returned home and took off the bandage that the word had been spelled wrong.
So why is “TEMPERANCE” calling for attention, especially now? Merriam-Webster defines the word “temperance” as “moderation” or “voluntary self-restraint.” So why tell me to chill when I’ve been chilling? We have all been at home; no one is exactly going wild at the moment. But this could be the perfect time to reflect on how we have been living, and how best to find balance in our lives moving forward.
This card’s imagery shows an angel, representing living in a way that is in harmony with our inner divinity. In many illustrations, the angel stands with one foot on land (the physical world) and one in water (the spiritual realm), pouring water between two cups to represent a balanced flow between self consciousness and subconsciousness. The reminder is to maintain a balance in your attention and behavior. From Amber Jayanti’s Living the Tarot: “It is by engaging with life in this way that you progress beyond the extremes of either living a completely worldly life or totally withdrawing into spiritual realms. Wholeness is experiencing the spirituality of the material world while simultaneously recognizing that material things and daily situations are spiritual instruments.”
The term “temperance” is also a reference to metallurgy. In Jayanti’s words, “When metals are tempered and tested, they are heated and cooled to purify and strengthen them.” We are being called to consciously navigate our responses to life. We must find our footing in our own temperance so that we can respond to the challenges life gives us with strength and resilience. Please take this time to reflect and ask yourself, is there an area of your life, physically, emotionally, or spiritually, that more attention could be poured into to create more balance? If you need to, as I often do, please remind yourself to pause and think before you act or react.
Embodying temperance in one’s life leads to wisdom and mastery of the self. When you learn from what you have been through and consciously integrate your wisdom into how you navigate life, you are choosing to elevate your consciousness. You’re leveling up! Look, nobody’s perfect, but the goal here is to not live in extremes. Are you indulging one particular area of life and neglecting another? Now is the time to take a look and consciously decide how you would like to balance your attention to live more harmoniously. When you give your attention to this, you become aware of the opportunity for every moment to be an act of divinity.
My guess is that my dream was making fun of me a little bit, in a cautionary way. Although I consider myself a mild child, I’m a Pisces – us sensitive water signs are especially prone to impulses that we must consciously resist giving in to! (Thankfully I’m at peace with all of my impulsive tattoos so far – though I was relieved to wake up and not be stuck with a misspelled one.) I have lived my life in some extremes, indulging in some phases, and restricting in others. It is my goal to live and act from a state of higher consciousness always. I think I do a pretty good job of “tempering” my nature these days, but I know it is an eternal learning process. I have worked hard on it and feel I have come a long way. If you are striving to achieve more balance in your life, I know you can do it! By making a conscious choice to live in a balanced way, you are making it possible for yourself to do it. Together we will always be learning how best to shape ourselves to meet the changing waters of the world around us. Please take time to reflect so that you can direct your energy’s flow.