Today's Draw: Beautifully Big (Empress) from the Circo di Vision Circus Insight Cards.* Do you love yourself as you are? Do you love your life as it is? How can you be your biggest you this holiday season?
If you have been properly stalking me through this blog, you know the ONE thing that can really piss me off about a deck is card stock. I have only come across two decks in all my collecting that gather dust primarily for reasons of card stock. And this, unfortunately, will be one of them. It's like shuffling tissue paper. The other deck, the Tarot of Transformation, would probably be one of my favorite decks if it weren't for card stock. It may sound like I'm cutting off my nose to spite my face to not use these decks regularly, but tarot is as much a tactile and sensual thing for me as it anything else. Touching flaccid paper is the same to me as trying to be inspired by ugly imagery.
That said, this IS a cute deck. And I was totally charmed that the first card I chose from the deck was "Beautifully Big". Not "The Fat Lady". Not "The Obese Empress". But Beautifully Big. So this kind of smoothed over the stock issue for me. :D (I chose the Empress from another deck today, so I think the universe is trying to tell me something.)
And the book (which gives two pages of interpretation from different angles for each image) goes on to talk about enjoying life to the fullest. Being open to love. Nurturing others. Being a comfort to others. Being warm. And being a celebration in and of ourselves. These are perfect thoughts for bringing into Christmas day, no matter where you're going or who you're with.
In fact, one of the meanings attributed to this card is loving yourself as you are. What a holiday gift that would be, huh? Imagine how different the world would be if we all do just that. A little self love and self respect would quickly defuse the Pol Pots of this world.
One of the wishes of the holiday season is peace on earth. You see it on cards and hear it in songs. And many carry the wish in their hearts. But peace is something that has to begin within and radiate out. It's not as if we can achieve world peace through the efforts of people with self hatred in their hearts. There's too much baggage that goes along with self criticism and self hate for it to create anything peaceful. And how do we even know what peace is if we haven't felt it within?
There's a song that is kind of cloying to listen to, but the lyrics are perfect: "Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me." Peace, kindness, compassion and forgiveness are choices, just as are anger, cruelty and intolerance. In any given moment, each of us can choose peace over conflict, forgiveness over vindication. We can't blame our reactions on the other person or on the situation. The onus is entirely on us. It's a choice. If peace is going to begin with you, you have to drop the rope in your tug of war and greet anger with kindness somewhere along the line. And if you try it once and it doesn't work, then you have to choose to try it again and again.
We can go on and on about what's wrong with this world and with other people, but until we exhibit the kindness and compassion that we'd like to see in this world, we're just part of the problem. When you radiate the change you'd like to see in this world (as the Buddha teaches) then you're modeling behavior for others to emulate, just as you are when you choose to fight over choosing to yield. In short, choosing peace is being beautifully big.
So that's your thought to bring into the holiday (and continue well past the holiday). Since this is the Christmas Eve edition (even if you're reading it the night of the 23rd) I'm going to wish you a Merry, Peaceful and Beautifully Big Christmas. I'm going to take off a couple of days and, depending on my mood, may put up classic posts or may put up nothing at all. :) See you later in the week!
*I got this deck through a Kickstarter campaign and can't find anywhere it's for sale online. But I'll bet if you email the creators through the link I provided above, you can find a way to purchase them.