[Note: at the bottom of this post, there is a link to a recording of me reading it, for those of you who prefer audio.]
For a long time I’ve pondered why it is that in the Samurai Tarot, the Strength card has the keyword vision. To me, the Strength card (more commonly showing a woman taming a lion) has always said patience. What is the connection between strength and vision?
I found the connection today, when I started thinking about a person in my life who consistently views everything in a negative way. He always has bad luck, the system is against him, nothing will ever change, he’s sick of it. Etc. I tend to see the world more through rose-colored glasses, but when I respond with positivity, he waves my rose-colored glasses away. To him, the idea of looking mainly at the positive side of things is a lie. He prides himself on seeing the the cold, hard, gritty truth.
On reflection, though, I realized today that his glasses are no more accurate than mine are. While I may be seeing the world through rose-colored glasses, he sees them through shit-colored glasses. He looks around and sees nothing but shit and people behaving in shitty ways, basically shit multiplying anywhere that he has to dig himself out of. And it makes him fucking crabby.
But why are his shit-colored glasses presumed to be more accurate and factual than my rose-colored ones? The fact is, we are both looking at the same set of facts–we just see those facts through different filters. I could take my glasses off entirely, and see the world blurry (since I am very nearsighted). I could close my eyes and see the world as colored tints on the back of my eyelids. Or fall asleep and see the world as it appears in my dreams. Which world is the right one? Which world is the true one? Which world is accurate???
Look, I’m not the Queen of Swords here. I can’t tell you which world is accurate, if any of them is. What I CAN tell you is that your filters affect your behavior. I can’t respond to what I don’t see. That’s why I should really ALWAYS wear my glasses when I’m driving. Frankly, shit-colored glasses block out a hell of a lot. They block out SO much that if you wear them for very long, you’re likely to give up. Why bother? Everything is shitty anyway.
But what happens if I wear my rose-colored glasses? I say to myself, hey. Look at all these small things that are starting to make a difference. And then I align myself with those things. I start to feel hope (the Star!). My rose-colored glasses motivate me. They say to me, I CAN make a difference! And then I start to fill with creativity and solutions. I start to work on things in whatever small way I can. Whether my rose-colored glasses are more accurate than the shit-colored ones is not really the point. The point is that the rose-colored glasses get me moving so that I can improve my world and make a more peaceful and organized life. You can’t create a peaceful, happy life unless you first VISUALIZE it. You have to see your destination in order to swim for it. You NEED glasses that let you see where you want to go, because if you don’t have that kind of filter, you’ll never reach your destination. You’ll just flail around helplessly.
Not to state the obvious, but: rose-colored glasses are EMPOWERING.
And I’d like to add a thought about this for those people who are empathic, like I am: part of being an empath is that people hold out their own glasses, their own filters, to you all the time, and you willingly put on those glasses and see through their eyes. And then your heart goes out to them. But you have to be able to take those glasses off again and hand them back. You need your own eyes and your own filters to navigate through life. There is a real danger in being an empath that you might get buffeted from one person’s filters to another and not have a chance to develop and use your own. That’s why we need good strong energetic boundaries, so that we don’t have to get sucked into other people’s dramas. I’m saying this to myself as much as to you–because this is a massive problem for me. Someone tells me their problems and I WORRY about them all day. When I should be getting other things done. I need to contain those problems and the filters that let me see them in some kind of container, within boundaries, maybe plexiglass boundaries, so I can SEE them and be of help to the person in question without having my entire life taken over by their shit-colored glasses.
The Samurai Tarot is right: Vision IS a vital part of Strength.
For those who prefer to listen to this post, here is a link to a recording of me reading it: https://www.dropbox.com/s/xnt9t76393j1bai/Why%20Rose-colored%20Glasses%20Are%20More%20Empowering%20Than%20Shitty%20Ones.mp3?dl=0