Happy new year to all my friends who celebrate Samhain! May it be bright and blessed for you all. Today’s deskhenge takes a look at the friend/foe situation, just because who couldn’t use a little closer look at who our friends are and who our friends aren’t? The column on the left represents our friends. These are the people or energies who work on our behalf, whether we like them or not–often people can be good teachers and we just can’t stand being around them. This doesn’t make them “foes.” This just makes them those difficult life lessons that the Universe tosses at us occasionally to help us get to where we’re going. We can’t like everybody, and that’s ok. And not everybody we don’t like (forgive the double negative) is an enemy, and it’s a mistake to treat them that way. The distinction lies in how they use you and treat you, and it’s a lifetime lesson for some of us to determine the difference. I have always tended to believe that nobody would ever be rotten or evil or act as an enemy to me, but that’s a weakness of mine. It makes more sense to me now to try to see people as they really are in the moment rather than as I would want them to be, as their Mom and Dad maybe saw them on the day they were born.
Keeping that in mind, our friends (the column on the left) are represented by the 10 of Swords, the Knight of Wands, and the King of Wands. See how dreadful the 10 of Swords looks? That’s the clue that just because somebody won’t treat you like the pretty pretty princess you think you are doesn’t mean that they aren’t your friend. I have had some difficult relationships in the past with difficult people, but I know in my heart that those people were in my life to teach me powerful lessons that I *had* to learn. They were unpleasant people and the lessons were hard, but I’m grateful for them now. The Knight and the King show that our friends are creative and passionate, and probably very educated, well-traveled, and opinionated. They can be fiery. They can also be vain and judgmental. But they are also a source of powerful creativity and connection in our lives, and for better or worse, they help things MOVE. They help us activate the fire in our hearts and minds, and they challenge us in the best way to become our best possible selves. We may not like them (and of course we may love them very much), but we absolutely need them in order to thrive.
Our foes (the column on the right) are the trickiest kind of tricksters. They are represented by the 2 of Pentacles, the Page of Cups, and The Devil. Watch out. These people are sweet, beautiful, exciting, charming as hell (literally), and full of magic and captivating stories. They do the dance of life so skillfully that it’s impossible to not become captivated just watching them, and in so doing, maybe we forget to live our own lives. We feel smaller and smaller and less and less activated, which is a good clue that we are being manipulated in a bad way. We’re being not only tempted to lift them higher so we can lift ourselves higher, but our perception of the world around us becomes skewed, as if we were standing on the deck of one of those ships in the 2 of Pentacles: the horizon seems to never get any closer, but we’re moving up and down with these huge waves that make us feel like we’re moving (when instead of moving forward we’re just moving all kinds of up and down). We trust what is not real, and that’s a danger. The Page of Cups is a dreamy lad who speaks to the unseen. This in itself is not a problem. The problem occurs when he becomes so captivated by what he sees and hears that he stops, sits down, and never moves again. His job is not just to hear the little fish in the cup, but to carry that cup and the fish in it to its next stop. The Page is a messenger, and what good is a messenger who becomes so in love with the message that he loses track of the reality of the path he’s on and never delivers the actual message he was entrusted to carry? That’s when the Devil manifests. Sometimes in readings we de-horn The Devil and just call him “addiction” or “temptation.” But that’s doing a disservice to the power of this card. There is evil in the world–evil tends to like it here on Earth, so I’ve been told. We are great big tasty energy treats to it, and it will eat us up if we’re not careful. So it’s very important to learn to recognize evil when we feel or otherwise sense it, because evil can wear a beautiful face. This is not to say that every beautiful person out there is evil–not by any means. It’s just a reminder to look beneath the surface, and pay as much attention to deeds as to looks. Just like your Mama used to tell you to. 😉