30 May 2012

Today's Tarot - 2 of Swords

The 2 of swords is often read as "mystical unity" or some reference to re-joining, or reunification or one-ness from many. I suspect it is from the crossed swords on the classic Rider-Waite artwork.

I was reading earlier, doing research for "The Vampire Diet" when I came across an interesting statement..."We believe the body is the vessel for our spirit." (Valentine, Cunningham Kindle version, location 116-18) On the surface, this seems like a very enlightened thing for a diet book to say. It is certainly head and shoulders above the body-focused diets that have been popular in the past.

Yet it just doesn't get real mind-body unity. Yet again, it smacks of the way modern medicine uses holistic-ish things in a modern medicine way...like prescribing an herb in the same way you would prescribe a medication...holistic health doesn't work that way.

Neither does real whole-ness, mind-body connection OR the 2 of swords for that matter. (YES - you know I'm loving the chance to put my two favorite topics in one blog post, holistic health and tarot!)

Think of this spirit-in-the-body concept as water in a glass. Yes, it is IN the glass, but the water and the glass are not ONE, they are not a holistic unit. The glass can break, but the water doesn't.  You can evaporate the water, but the glass continues essentially unchanged. While this is a beautiful example of how the spirit can continue after death...it isn't an example of wholeness.

While alive, the mind, body and spirit are unified in a much more integral way. The body isn't the spirit's muscle car. The body is deeply inhabited, right down to the cellular level. We are more like water in a sponge than water in a glass. Either way, the water and the thing holding it can be separated, but while together, the integration is more complex, deep, and thorough...more sponge than "vessel".

That is one of many lessons the Two of Swords can teach. Not the structural differences between a glass and a sponge...the idea of real unity. At this level, the analogy becomes even less like water in a glass or a sponge, but more like salt dissolved in water. The card hints at unity taken to another level, a cosmic level. We are one with the cosmos even more than salt molecules are one with  the water molecules in the ocean. When you are talking about all-that-is, that kind of unity can be a very powerful idea.

So mad props to the authors for teaching about body-spirit connection in a diet book, but I think it is worth remembering we are more than souls in a vessel, we are spirits saturating the material world, which can be both comforting and empowering, exactly the intent of the 2 of swords.

Source: Valentine, J., Cunningham, J., 2003 "Weight Solutions: The New Body-Mind-Spirit Approach"  Kindle edition, originally with Trafford Publishing.

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